Just Do It!
Sound familiar? Nike had it right with this simple slogan yet I wonder how many take physical exercise and fitness seriously.
Recent article on Fitness Statistics by Sarah Marshall at MyFit.ca gave this sobering summary, ” More than 60% of adults don’t get the recommended amount of regular physical activity. Worse yet, 25% of all adults are not active at all! Nearly 50% of young people age 12-21 are not vigorously active on a regular basis. Only 19% of all high school students are physically active for 20 minutes or more in physical education classes every day during the school week. “. How do you measure up? No pun intended as my measurements have gone up consistently over the years as my exercise routines have diminished.
Keeping fit is vital to healthy living as my doctor reminds me at our regular semi-annual visits. Making time for fitness is another matter. We can all look at our daily calendars and say that there is just not enough time. But is time or the lack of it really the problem?
Of course not. When we get honest with ourselves the truth is we just don’t see it as a high enough priority. Many other more pressing activities crowd in and fill every waking moment. In fact if you are like me, an avid multitasker, you are handling at least two if not more demands at a time. You probably sing the same song with me, ‘ There’s just not enough time! ‘
But is that true? I have a number of friends who run miles everyday and they live very busy, productive and highly successful lives. So what is my problem?
I know that I need to get fit physically or at least make time every day for exercise. Not likely that at my stage in life I will need or be able to develop a body like Arnold S. but it would be great to have more energy to play with my grandchildren. So what should I do? What can you do to make sure you make time for fitness?
The first thing that I did recently was recognized that a holistic approach might be the best motivator. I realized that being physically fit without attention to my mental, emotional and spiritual well-being would not serve my long-term goals.
Anything that we want to carry out starts with our mental state. Training and education are critical components to mental fitness. Just like physical exercise we can train our mind through a variety of methods using our natural curiosity to keep our minds alert and active.
Keeping our emotions in check is easier for some than others. I have always thought of myself as a very confident and emotionally stable person. In recent years I have faced some very challenging experiences that put my stability and confidence to the test. I realize now that if I had not been practicing sound emotional ‘exercises’ by taking the time to understand myself and get in touch with my emotions, the challenges I faced and still face could have thrown me off balance.
This area is too often ignored and yet has also gained a lot of press in recent years. Your spiritual domain is not just about what ‘religion’ you adhere to or what ‘belief system’ you follow. It has more to do with being in touch with the Creator of all life. Without attention to the basic Laws of Nature or Spiritual Laws of the universe life are void of meaning. A recent book by Reverend Graham Tomlin, ‘Spiritual Fitness’ talks about the balance needed between spiritual and physical fitness. One reader wrote, ” (in) ‘Spiritual Fitness’ (the author) conceptualized a powerful antidote to the consumption and luxury-driven culture advertised by modern media… “.
Finally, physical fitness, when balanced with all areas of our life becomes something that we cannot do without and still enjoy a full, vibrant and successful life. I am not advocating that you start running marathons tomorrow but a little walk everyday will do the heart and mind a lot of good.
One man I have read about walked thousands of miles if not hundreds of thousands through most of the middle eastern countries including Turkey, Greece, Italy, Cyprus, Sicily, Malta, Israel, Lebanon. All this he did when there were no modern roads as he travelled these areas during the 1st century AD. He was an avid writer and he spoke about the importance of training using the Greek work gymnazo when he penned these words talking about life, ” Run (life) in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games (life) goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown (gold medal) that will not last but we do it to get a crown (reward) that will last forever! ” I Corinthians 9:24-25
So what will you do now? I suggest that you assess these four areas of your life. Are they in balance? Do you spend time on each area daily to become a strong, balanced person? Do you need to consult a trainer in any one of these areas?
I must run now – or more specifically take the dog for a walk!
Remember – The Best Is Yet To Come!