Ignorance, denial, or overwhelmed?
Wednesday, December 12, 2012
A friend that is a fitness instructor posted something on Facebook that caught my eye:
"Found this poster at my uncle's house from the early 80's. Near 30 years later Diet and exercise are still considered the keys to health and longevity, but yet we fail to recognize that still!"
I wanted to comment but so many thoughts streamed through my head! I really don't think it's something to which we are ignorant. I would love to know how many people really don't realize this by now. I feel like it's an obvious concept - it's making the changes that can be difficult, for whatever reason. We recognize it, we just don't act on it. That explains dietitians and other health professionals who don't always walk the walk (myself included!). Why do we ignore it?
A member of my family asked me this weekend if he should take vitamin B12. My immediate response, before I could even filter myself, was "no, you should exercise!" I knew he was going to say it was because he was tired all the time - which was his response. I told him it may seem counterintuitive, but some physical activity could give him more energy. I also asked him if he has been wearing his CPAP for his sleep apnea - something I know he doesn't like to do and he had not been. Two behavioral modifications that would help relieve his fatigue, but it is still much easier to pop a vitamin once a day! I did tell him he could ask his doctor to check his level along with other labs to see if he was anemic or had some other deficiency to explain it. But deep down, I think the other two issues were bigger concerns.
I don't blame him for longing for that easier way out - I did the same thing when I was a teenager. I had terrible stomach aches growing up and I always wanted it to be some actual medical issue, like a disease of some sort that was beyond my control. I hated when the doctor would just tell me I needed to eat more fiber! I didn't want to have to change my habits. I thought it would be easier to have some surgery or have to take some medicine! I realize now how silly that is. After living a healthier lifestyle, I realize it is really not that hard!
I remember when I came to the realization that I needed to do something to stop gaining weight and actually make an attempt to lose some. I burst into tears because I was terrified I was going to start a cycle of crazy dieting and weight fluctuations. And I do this for a living! It is really overwhelming to start all this. But then while you're in the swing of things, it seems so easy! Getting into the autopilot where the exercising and the tracking is not optional, but mandatory didn't take long. I almost feel like it took longer to break the habit!
I am mostly writing this as a message to myself when I want to start losing the baby weight! Don't deny what needs to be done. Get back on track with what worked so well the first time:
~Track every bite and preferably before you eat it
~Workout as much as time allows - and stop telling yourself walking doesn't count!
~Remember the quote "Someone even busier than you is working out right now!" Find the time, it's for your health.
~Make every choice considering what your body deserves
~Only splurge when it's worth it - don't eat it unless you love it!
~Just do something, even if it's only one healthy thing a day
Now in the meantime, I need to focus on trying to stay physically active for the remainder of this pregnancy. I haven't done anything for exercise since I did the Color Run - which we actually ran less than 1k of! That was in October. So the goal is to walk at least once a week for at least 20 minutes. I find it hard to get myself to get up and go to the gym because I start thinking "it's just walking, it doesn't really matter that much if I skip it!" But some is better than none. I want to maintain the habit of visiting the gym or devoting a little time to working out. Actually it's more like reestablish than maintain at this point!!