As an avid runner/athlete, I am always planning my days, weeks, months around workouts and or races. If you are a runner, swimmer, triathlete, soccer player or whatever, you know what I am talking about.
If you are fairly serious about your athletic endeavors, you plan your bed time, your meals, your “going out” availibilty and everything else around your sport.
You often hear your “non-active” friends calling you “lame” or a “health nut”, or “obsessive”. But, you generally just smile or nod or make some half-ass joke to appease them. All the while, you are thinking about your “long run”, your “tempo run” or something along those lines.
You will often hear older co-workers, friends or familiy say “Yeah, when I was your age, I was thin and in shape too..but just wait until you are 30, 40..blah, blah, blah”. They’ll say “I use to run 6 miles a day, EVERYDAY, too!!”
It isn’t uncommon to hear things like “I would love to workout or run everyday, but I just DON’T HAVE THE TIME!!!”
So, on that note…I am going to stop all you Debbie Downers right now!!!
First off, I am not saying to go out and sign up for a marathon tomorrow…Hell, for that matter, I am not even saying to take up running at all. I will say, running is one of my passions..but, I know it isn’t for everyone.
But, what I am saying is this. You CAN DO SOMETHING!!! That something could be going out and walking the dogs for an hour every evening..it could be taking the kids to the park and running around with them…it could be taking up swimming, or joining a soccer league, go for a bike ride with the hubby/wife, roller blade on the boardwalk..OR, you could start running!
I know, I know!! You just don’t have the time!! Or, it’s easy for ME because I have always been thin and have always loved being active!!
Nope, that is far from true! There was a time (in the very recent past) that I was a heavy drinker, a smoker and very unhealthy. In the span of about 3 years, I went from 150 pounds to 218! I didn’t even own a pair of running shoes at the time.
I was unhappy with my health, my life and generally everything else…But, once Crystle and I moved to Va. Beach in April 2010, we started making some changes…not overnight, but gradually we started becoming more active…we changed up our lifestyle and over time, we started seeing some positive results.
Now, 2 years later, I am back down to 155 pounds…I have found the love of running again (as has Crystle). We are constantly on the go..enjoying as much time outdoors as we can.
Aside from my own personal testimony and weight loss, there are a few others in our running group who have had the same success story through running. Several of them were big time out of shape and were extremely unhealthy…But, with a few changes, they have completely transformed themselves.
So, does this mean I have given up everything I love to live the life of a Running Monk?? No way!! I still enjoy my beer and my Buffalo Wings..but, just not everyday of the week like before.
I also find little ways to do some extra things that I know add up. For instance, when I am working over at the Naval Station Norfolk base, I purposely park outside the gate and walk to the ship that I am working on. This ends up being a 3 mile walk (round trip). It takes me 30 minutes each way and done over the course of a week, adds up to 15 miles of walking (that’s a couple thousand calories burned right there).
In the grand scheme of things, you are not only hurting yourself by being out of shape and overweight. You are also hurting your family and friends. If you don’t care much about your own health and diet, chances are, you don’t care much about your spouses, or your childrens…This ends up being a vicious cycle that can be passed on for generations.
Your health, or lack there of, is always a joke until you get some disturbing news from the doctor. You can joke all you want, but NOBODY really wants high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, etc. Not to mention, many of your health issues are hereditary and can be passed on to your children.
My good friend Thomas Hicks has MS, an Afib and currently has a tumor blocking up one entire lung..Oh, and he also found out yesterday that he has a serious sinus problem that will also require surgery in the near future….BUT, GUESS WHAT? He will be out there tonight running with the rest of us!
For those of you who have a problem believing what I am talking about…I have included some before and after photos of myself and some of my running buds to prove that changes can be made.
So, instead of just wishing and hoping..get out there and get going! Take a walk, dust off the treadmill that has become a clothes rack, or air up the tires on the bike that has been sitting in the garage for 12 years. But, whatever you do, just DO SOMETHING!!