Friday, May 18, 2007

You've Got to MOVE It!

Is there anyone that can say with absolute certainty that they couldn’t feel any better? I doubt it, but if so, I want to meet them.

It is possible, though, for someone to be able to say they feel “great.” By the grace of God, I’m one of them.

Go through a few years of chronic “status asthmaticus” and you’ll appreciate how it feels to draw a breath without it feeling like your sucking air through a coffee straw.

Get over a few days of the nasty flu that was going around. Compared to that, you’ll feel great!

Talk to someone who lost 80 pounds and they’ll tell you they feel great. Like the Bible says, “…let us strip off every weight that slows us down…” (Hebrews 12:1). For them, life is so much easier now, than before.

As you can see, feeling great is a relative thing. No, not your extended family coming over to visit… that’s a different kind of relative thing—that may or may not make you feel great. (In my case, it makes me feel great!)

It’s how you feel when you start to feel you’re not a loser anymore. Or it’s how you feel after you become a loser, and 15 pounds lighter, notice a little spring in your step.

It’s how you feel when you look down and see your toes for the first time in 20 years. It’s how you feel when you realize that going up the stairs didn’t gas you like it used to, just a short time ago.

It’s a feeling of satisfaction that you’re doing the right thing. It’s a sense of purpose that you’re being a better steward of your body.

It’s the warm fuzzy feeling when you catch your spouse giving you the “look” that you haven’t seen for a long time, and all you did is take your shirt off!

I’ve probably way overdone it on metaphors, but you get the idea, right? Feeling great is within reach for everyone. All it takes is a little time, a little work (o.k. maybe a lot of work), and a desire to feel better.

The first step is to figure out what you want. What’s your goal? More energy? Lose 20 pounds? More, perhaps? Figure it out.

Then, get a plan together. It’s going to take action. Start moving your body. That’s it. Just start moving. Join the Y. Join Curves, join a gym. Buy a treadmill. Walk a mile first thing every morning.

I love what they’re doing at a local grade school with their walking program. A bunch of kids have committed to walking at least a mile a day after school. Teachers too!

Start lifting some weights. Put some muscle back on that body. Everything gets easier with a little more muscle. You’ve got more strength to do the things you want to do.

Studies show that people in their 80’s can improve muscle strength and endurance after just 6 weeks of working out! How much more so, for you, if you’re only in your 30’s or 40’s, 50’s, or even 60’s?

Pick a sport. Try it. If you don’t like it, pick something else. Enjoy the process. You don’t have to be Nadia to enjoy learning gymnastics. Or fight in a cage to enjoy learning Jui Jitsu. Trust me. I’m doing both, and it’s a wild ride!

You want to feel better? Or better yet, feel great? Start moving. Like the song says, “You’ve got to move it move it. You’ve got to move it, move it. You’ve got to move it move it. You’ve got to…MOVE IT!”

Saturday, May 05, 2007

What's Up With Us?

Why do we keep doing things the same way, even when they’re not working? Why do we keep doing things we know will harm us, like smoking, excessive drinking, and overeating?

Why do we start another exercise program, thinking, “this time we’ll keep doing it,” only to let other things pull us away, after just a few weeks?

Why do we buy an Ab Lounge™, Bow Flex™, Skiers, Treadmills, Exercise Balls, and then let them sit there collecting dust in the corner?

Why do we say we’re going to make changes, and even make attempts at it, but then give up, again? What’s up with us, anyway?

In his seminars, success coach Anthony Robbins talks about how people sometimes sabotage success. Afraid of the consequences if things do change, we’ll do things to insure that things don’t change.

I think that sometimes, that’s true. I also think that sometimes, we just get lazy and comfortable in our ways. We take the easy road.

The bible gives us another perspective: “No matter which way I turn, I can’t make myself do right. I want to, but I can’t. When I want to do well, I don’t. And when I try not to do wrong, I do it anyway… Oh, what a miserable person I am!” (Romans 8:18-24).

Ever felt that way? Me too. And come on. We know right from wrong. We know when we should be doing something, and when we shouldn’t be doing that other thing.

It’s time to step up and make some changes. To start doing the right things. Look at it this way. A change is gonna come, one way or another. Ultimately, everybody ends up six feet under. So how do you want to go?

Time is going to pass, whatever you do. Ten years, twenty years, thirty years; whatever time you have left. How will you spend them?

Personally, I’d like to be productive till the end. Studies show that people in their eighties can improve muscle tone and strength, after just six weeks of training!

I’d like to have them telling me to slow down, worried that I might hurt myself. Maybe go skiing with my grand children.

I’d like to be like Moses, or Aaron in the Old Testament. God told them that it was time, and he was going to “gather them” to their people.” That’s how I’d like to go. Not in a bed somewhere, unable to do even the basic things to take care of myself.

Sure, bad things happen to good people, and accidents and disease can strike anyone. But it’s also clear that there are many things we can do to reduce the risks.

Certain foods help fight cancer. Other foods reduce the risk of heart disease. And everyone knows they need to exercise. Next week, I’m going to start a list of things you can do to turn things around. If you do them, you’ll start feeling better. You might even look better, too? Interested? See you then.