I want to confess something —
The secrets to living a healthy life have been pretty much nailed down since before anyone reading this was born. In a time when disruptive innovation is changing the way we do just about everything, some people just plain lose sight of how simple life can be.
Before you come after me for downplaying the last 50 years of biomedical innovation, let’s review what health authorities have had to say about this over the last 3,000 years:
[Healthy people eat a variety of good food and move around often]
– Ancient Civilizations from India to Asia
Hippocrates (c 460–370BCE) [remarked] “eating alone will not keep a man well; he must also take exercise”.
“Eat food, not too much, mostly plants.”
– Michael Pollan, 2014
For all that we’ve learned about how different factors improve health, the core ideas have remained startlingly consistent. Whether you like it or not, the numbers on the scale, the sizes of your clothes, your body fat % – none of that changes the importance of taking good care of yourself, day-in and day-out, for as much of your life as possible.
Why does this matter to me?
Fitness is one of those terrifying tasks that never seem to get easier. The more you learn, the less it all makes sense and somehow everyone on the internet has six-pack abs.
Take a look at the comments on any major article on nutrition – people are desperate, sad, and angry about their inability to lose weight while preventable chronic disease kills more people than anything else.
Transforming your body is hard, and there are many reasons to do it – but I want my stance to be clear: You don’t need me, or anyone else’s help to protect your health.
However your life unfolds, if you can only:
Avoid (or quit) smoking cigarettes
Eat several vegetables a day
Move around throughout the day
You’ll be better off than most Americans.
When you’re trying to change your life, never lose sight of the difference between taking care of yourself and chasing those goals. Whether or not you end up with 6-pack abs, the journey is what really matters.
Next one will be more concrete I promise, If you read this far then let me know about your experience with dead ends and setbacks in your life and training in the comment section!
This article was written by Michael Chronley, CSCS, Fitness & Nutrition Advisor.