October 07, 2016
Where do I start? How do I become healthy?
The most common question that I have heard over time is, where do I start? How do I become healthy?
Start where you are at. Wherever that may be. With whatever you are comfortable starting with. And stick with it. This is compatible with the practice of crowding out when trying to eat better. Adding in more good food choices will naturally leave less room for those that are not so good. Most diets fail because they are based on restricting and/or removing foods from a person’s diet. Instead of focusing on what you cannot have, spend some time determining what you can and would like to add into your life.
I'm A Quitter And I Like It
A hundred years ago, when I quit smoking, I did so through a program called Smokenders. Ok, maybe only 30 years ago – on February 26, 1986 – to be precise. A large part of the focus throughout the 6-week program was on the benefits of being a non-smoker. We worked on identifying our triggers and breaking those patterns. We journaled. And we spent a lot of time brainwashing ourselves on the benefits of being a non-smoker. Worked for me. I know people who have quit for years and still crave a cigarette. You couldn’t pay me to go back to it – not for any amount of money.
Quitting smoking was the most empowering thing I ever did for myself, at least until that point in my life. I still remember the feeling when I woke up on that morning – February 26, 1986 – as a non-smoker. I can still feel it, through that memory. The key, however, was that I was ready for the change. My son was a toddler at the time. So I was motivated for my own health, and also for the sake of my son’s health. Quitting smoking was one of the first steps that I took in my journey to regaining my health.
My next step was to add in regular exercise. I used to get up at 4:30am to dance to my aerobic/step videos. Anyone remember Charlene Prickett? I had a lot of her videos. A lot. Then in 1997 I was asked to join a group at work to run a race in our local Corporate Challenge games. And my love of running was born.
Along the way, I have cleaned up my eating. I make careful and thoughtful food choices – for me and for my family. I don’t have a perfect diet – far from it. But I eat much better than I once did. And I supplement regularly with the best that I can find. Because I know that even if I eat clean and pure, it’s almost impossible to get the nutrients that we need solely from our food today.
Start Where You Are
As you can see, my journey to health has been a long one – and it continues. So my advice? Start wherever is comfortable for you. And just keep going. The body has an amazing capability to heal itself given the right tools. Work on providing those tools. Whatever you need… as you need it. Congratulate yourself for having the courage to be responsible for your health. And then enjoy the rewards. Good health is the best gift I have ever given myself – and I wish the same for you!
B - The Healthy Guerrilla