For me, defying convention has never been about wanting to be different. It has been about wanting to have a snowball's chance in hell of staying healthy in a world that has often seemed intent on making me sick, fat, and depressed.
What really kills us prematurely, and all too often imposes years of misery beforehand, isn't a list of chronic diseases, but the factors that cause those diseases. What really takes years from life and life from years is a willingness to know WHAT, yet neglect the opportunity to know HOW.
My favorite running accessory is my bright orange therapeutic foam roller. I lean on top of it and roll out my shins, thighs, and calves. It hurts a lot to roll them out, but it helps immensely with injury prevention in the long run, and it feels great afterwards.
Any good roadmap has structure and suggestions, but that doesn't mean you can't choose to detour. What's important is to accept each day for what it is and to be present in it. Choose to be the best you can be in the moment.
Is this approach silly? Is it overcomplicated? No doubt some will say yes. If the real goal is a holistic, adjusted approach to eating that can be sustained for the rest of my life without turning me into a permanent neurotic record-keeping calorie bore, should I even be using these crutches?
To be healthy, fit, and confident in our lives, we must accept and appreciate the weight of words. That's right, there are "heavy words," and there are "light words" -- words that can help you gain or lose emotional weight.
Pain is relative and suffering is optional. Do not choose to suffer through anything in silence. Who knows, you could be the driving force responsible for assisting a person in completely recovering or even avoiding their next personal crisis.
We need doctors who understand how well the body reacts when the whole system is treated, not just the symptoms. One doctor in particular, Lissa Rankin, has made a career out of a calling she felt to serve her patients on the most authentic level possible.
These are the psychological stages of long-term weight loss. I hope knowing that is helpful. You can lose weight and keep it off. It's a process. It takes work. And even though it does get easier over time, the work continues or the weight returns.
Getting to health doesn't need to be all that complicated. And it also doesn't need to be about "should." Don't pursue health because it's an obligation, or because someone says you should. Pursue health because health is a currency you can spend on living better.
Believe it or not, those of us in midlife today are tomorrow's wise elders. What sage advice do you want to leave the generations that follow? Better start thinking about it. It will be tomorrow before you know it!
The methods I employ to achieve my goals are quite simple. I have them, I set them, but then I let them go and just do the next thing, showing up as fully as I can with who I am, wherever I am and in whatever I am doing.
I know it is hard to stay committed to any behavior change like exercising daily. I also know how much better you'll feel if you exercise, stay fit, and eat right. Try to think of exercise as movement rather than a strict regimen.
Healthy eating and living isn't about sacrifice; it's about recognizing the gift of life you've been granted and honoring yourself. Filling our bodies with processed foods weighs us down both physically and emotionally, limiting our ability to shine.
At its most basic, self-awareness is simply self-appreciating the self. To find an answer to a question we are all interested in -- "How am I doing?" -- you have to be willing to look in the first place.
To those who are overwhelmed by the prospect of what is required to reach these goals, my advice is this: Be better than you were the day before. That's the secret. That's what drove those athletes to greatness.
At some point during the thrill of watching the Olympics, the question emerges: How do they do it? The answer is supposed to inform the rest of us on the "secrets" to living, well, like an Olympian -- to living with superhuman health. Is there such a formula we can glean from our prized athletes?
The choice to live our lives to the full measure of our potential in every aspect can only be made by each one of us and only for ourselves. But once we take ownership, there is a better chance that the accomplishments will last.
If you want to stay healthy for life, you need to take care of yourself. That's the conventional wisdom. But the real secret to lifelong good health is actually the opposite: Let your body take care of you.