Don’t Give in to Giving Up


fitness-whats-your-excuseEach year about this time I do an assessment of my health and fitness, and ask myself if I am remaining true to my core values to remain healthy, live actively, and keep myself focused on the living my life with purpose. The start to this new year has been no different.

A little back story and true confession: After being the recipient of injuries at the hands of other people driving and texting over the last few years, there were times that I just wanted to give in to the mentality that most people give in to about using my age and the reality of being in a few accidents that have been a long and painful road to recovery as justification to take it easy and not be as driven to be healthy, fit, and active as I have historically been.

I almost bought into the lie that because I was dealing with so much pain and the healing process was taking so long, that I could justify the failure mentality that many people get as they hit middle age (and even pre-middle age).

This encouragement is for you who have toyed with the idea of giving into complacency as it concerns your health and overall fitness.

DO NOT GIVE IN TO THE LIE that it is acceptable to eat unhealthy, be fat, and not exercise.

DO NOT MAKE UNWISE CHOICES to live a life that will lead to premature aging, heart attacks, stroke, disease, and all forms of preventable illnesses.

DO NOT GIVE UP on making a daily choice to live life to its fullness in every way, starting with your health and fitness.

The reward for this is great! You will be glad you did. I know I am!

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Getting Started on the Road to Physical Health and Conditioning

Getting started on a physical training regiment can be really overwhelming for some, especially those suffering from obesity. There are two things that I recommend to people who have been out of it for a while. So that we are all clear on what “people who have been out of it” means, “IT” defined is the human responsibility to care for their bodies the ‘temple’ and its overall health. Being “out of it” means that a person has let themselves get to a point that even walking for long periods of time or climbing steps makes them short of breath, or where a person is so out of shape that they cannot do a push up or bend over with their legs straight and touch their toes.

Before I get into this, here is a little information on the diagram incase you are wondering. This is film taken of two women.  The image reveals the stress causing nature of fat on the vital organs like the liver, heart, and digestive system, as well as the compressed joints in the knees and ankles. These are only a few issues that ultimately bring a decline in the overall health of someone who is obese.  …on with the article…

Here are some simple instructions and points to remember that I recommend for anyone who feels that they are ‘too far gone’ in their physical appearance to do anything that can make a difference. These are simple to follow, non-threatening action points that can make a dramatic difference in your efforts to regain your health and physical appearance.  I can promise you that the short term and long term benefits to your health by simply implementing these basic principles will change your life.

1)  Begin setting aside 20 minutes a day to walk or ride your bike and make a commitment to do it everyday for three months time.

2)  When you start taking your walks or bicycle rides, let someone know you are making this commitment and ask them to hold you accountable for doing it.  Accountability is paramount in personal and business success, but especially when it comes to exercise.  Ideally, if you can find a friend to walk or exercise with you, you both will enjoy the day to day process of improving yours and their health together.

3)  Make your first week or so casual, easy going walks or rides. Don’t push yourself, but really just get out and do it.  This is an important part of the psychological process of increasing the ‘pleasure’ aspect of your commitment.  A great walk and a great talk with someone you enjoy being around is a great way to ease into your routine.

4)  After a week or so – once you start getting used to feeling a bit ‘sweaty,’ begin increasing the intensity of your walks and rides during the middle 10 minutes of your exercise so that you really work up a sweat and are able to feel your heartbeat from it.  I am not talking feeling your heartbeat where you feel it pounding in your neck and head, but just a noticeable increase in your pulse to a slightly uncomfortable but not overly stressed feeling.  If for any reason you start feeling overwhelmed or your heart rate gets too high – slow down, walk slow, and breath deep until you can pick up the pace again without feeling overwhelmed, faint or like you want to throw up (I know. It sounds gross, but it happens).

IMPORTANT:  Check with your doctor to be sure walking or riding your bike like this is OK. This is especially important if you suffer from clinical obesity or another chronic illness where such elevated exercise could be dangerous for you.  Typically, unless you are a heart patient, most doctors will tell you that any and all exercise is good for you.

5)  Daily stretching should be incorporated into your walking or bicycle riding activities. Stretching is extremely helpful in healing and restoration of your body on many levels, so do incorporate it into your day in addition to your twenty minute exercise sessions. You can Google stretching exercises and find a ton of Websites for stretching.  If you do Pilates, Pilates is a great way to stretch and get in shape in the process.  Another great way to get your body stretched out is doing yoga. The point here is that stretching is your friend, and prevents sports injuries. While walking and bicycling are not “sports” per say, they do use muscle groups that should be warmed up through controlled stretching.

6) Begin to increase your water intake gradually until you can drink one half of your body weight in ounces of water every day. This means that if you way 250 pounds, you will want to drink 125 fluid ounces of water (H2O) every day starting with one quart of water first thing in the morning as you are just waking up. Keep it next to your bed so you can sit up and drink it before your feet even hit the floor. This regiment gets your digestive track turned on and starts your colon’s flushing mechanism to clean toxins out of your system.

7) If you drink any kind of soda or carbonated drink of any kind or any beverage with artificial sweeteners in them, STOP! This one willful act of change in your life style will make a huge difference in your health. I also recommend that you ween your body off of caffeine, especially coffee. A cup every few days or less, MAX! Caffeine is highly toxic to your liver (as are a wide range of other comfort beverages and foods). As your liver is an important key to your overall health and to every other organ and system in your body, liver health is VITAL to your overall body health. A sick liver means all sorts of other sickness in your body, from major organs to glandular imbalance.

8) If you are still reading this, it means you really do want to change your physical health, so here is one recommendation that while it will require some hard choices in your diet, it will really make a difference in your success to lose weight. Remove (completely) one source of carbohydrates, fat, sugar, and/or processed food source from your diet each week until the only carbohydrates you eat are from vegatables and healthy sources of carbs, i.e. vegetables, wild rice or brown whole rice, etc. That means bye bye to pastas and breads my friend – at least as you know pastas and breads to be. There are several great alternatives to these that are healthy choices, like rice or spinach pasta or millet and flax bread (without yeast). This will be a huge step towards physical health and weight loss.

REMINDER: Check with your primary care physician before undertaking any new or potentially stressful exercise program. If you start implementing these 8 success action points, you will be amazed at how much better you will feel if you have not been used to doing things as simple as even these.

Write me or leave a comment here if you have some feedback on your experience. I would love to hear about it. Who knows! You might be one of our featured ‘success stories’ in our coming video testimonial section! As always, I remain for your lasting health in every way.

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