Exercise and nutrition frighten the toughest people. Intelligent, wealthy, thoughtful individuals fail with fitness and overall health. You see it everyday. Up and coming national political figures, popular singers, heads of large companies, even medical professionals and scientists. When it comes right down to it, many people don’t view exercise and good nutrition as a priority. They are focused on their jobs and making money, family issues, community development, etc. By ignoring health, they keep the scary monster in the closet.
Others turn the knob and peak through the cracked opening of the doorway to see the monster sleeping but do nothing to get him out for the battle. They know that health is a high priority but they simply do not possess the skill set required to execute. They struggle with time management – not knowing how to fit exercise and cooking time into their calendars. The gym is unappealing, and they really don’t know what to do if they go. They experience aches and pains. They love their current food choices and find solace in the experience of their meals. They know the demons are there, doing them harm, but they simply don’t know what steps to take to fight them off.
The bottom line for many takes its toll every year as the scale continues its journey towards overweight and obesity levels. It happens slowly, gradually. Your clothes start to get a bit tighter. Something important in your life happens, like having a baby or going through an injury or illness. The body’s change isn’t tectonic, but months and months can pass by without much of a consideration of inertia’s effect on your health.
Like in a spooky movie, the intensity builds.
A glance in the mirror. “Oh my.”
The trip to the dressing room. “Yikes!”
A comment your mother makes when you visit for the holidays. “I know, I know.”
Your annual visit to the doctor’s office. “Shriek!”
The culmination varies but hopefully you possess a breaking point, a realization so vivid that you have no other choice than to face the scary monster that is your declining health. You take a deep breathe and open the closet door because you know that fighting the demon is so much more appealing than allowing your poor health to control and therefore ruin your life.
Start today by embracing the evil. Indulgence, relaxation, celebration are all positive attributes to unhealthy choices. They have their time and place. When the time comes to include them, they add zest to otherwise bland work weeks and stagnant years. Instead of casting away all of your indulgences, start by adding one healthy component to each day. Here are a few easy ideas:
Wake up 10 minutes early and do the following routine, twice. For 30 seconds each: walk in place, jog in place, jumping jacks, squats against the wall, push ups, sit ups, bicycle crunch, side-lying lateral leg lifts.
Take two flights of stairs. Five times a day. Or ten flights all at once.
Go for a brisk walk at lunch. Bring your phone and make a work call if you need to. Multitasking never hurt anyone.
Watch television on your floor and do leg lifts and sit ups as you watch the news.
Eat an apple. Not applesauce, not apple juice. A whole apple. Then have your bagel.
Down a big glass of water before a meal. It helps fill you up a bit but doesn’t hinder your stomachs ability to breakdown food.
Health and fitness can indeed frighten the strongest and brightest. You can manage them however, and there’s no better time to start than right now. •
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