You don’t get it, and to be honest, I forgot some of it.
There is a saying that goes, “We teach what we need to learn.” Back in 1998 I was fat, sick and totally unhealthy at age 29. It was terrible. I got fit, I got healthy and it totally changed my world forever. In fact, I committed to teaching what I had learned and built a gym. I worked in some other gyms for a while and then built my own, and it has been 13 years now as of May that I have been teaching other people all the things I have learned and continue to learn.
There are people that are easily fit, easily lean, easily successful in sports etc., but I am not one of those people. I have to pay attention to working out consistently, carefully watch what I eat and out train everyone I race against just to stay average. My genetics don’t necessarily support how I wish to be, so I have to follow the old adage – hard work beats talent.
Daily I meet people who say that they want to be fit and healthy, but the reality is, some people don’t get it. In fact, most people don’t get it. To be fair, I forgot about it for a while too. I got lazy, I was coasting along, eating pretty well, working out pretty well and I gained 20 lbs. I still look pretty healthy, but that doesn’t cut it for me.
So for the past month I gave been totally dedicated to eating well. For the past six weeks I have trained nearly perfectly. The results are slower than I would like at age 46, but I am practicing what I preach – focusing on progress, not perfection. I am getting absolutely reacquainted with how hard it is to stay on track. I am thrilled with the improvement in energy and sleep and I no longer require a daily hit of coffee.
Life is not designed to support good health and nutrition any more, even though it’s more available than ever. Now more than ever, things disguised as food are everywhere and in fact taste good. They seduce us into a false sense of happiness, they are cheaper and more convenient that real healthy food.
Getting amazing fitness results mean focus and dedication in the face of all the distractions that exist.
To get really fit and healthy, here is all you need to do:
Eat well. There are many variations and opinions and some research on this, but all of them require the same thing – planning, preparation and knowing in advance what you are going to eat each day. It means saying ‘no’ to a lot of things and we are programmed to see that as some sort of hardship, which is total garbage. Being healthy and making good choices instead of caving in to your buddies and eating a bunch of crap food and drinks just because it is Friday is not a hardship. Yes, I believe in a cheat meal once a week and having some ‘fun food’, but for most people, that leads to a day or a weekend blowout.
Exercise. You need to move your body, because that is what it is designed for, from digestion, to lymph node movements, to strength and power. We are designed to move. Sitting all day is deadly (that is a fact, not an opinion).
Drink water. You don’t need to drown in two or three litres a day, but you do need to drink water so that your cells can work.
Do that, and be healthy. Try it for a month and see what happens.
Scott McDermott is a personal trainer and owner of Best Body Fitness in Sylvan Lake.