Okay. Here’s the situation.
We are more overfed, and yet, malnourished than ever before. Our food supply sucks and is getting worse. And it’s very difficult and increasingly expensive to eat a healthy, nutritious diet. We’re literally eating ourselves into disease, and ultimately, death.
The average American is chronically sleep deprived, and one in five Americans has a confirmed sleep disorder. We simply aren’t getting the rest and recovery we need on a day-to-day basis, which has a cumulative effect (this isn’t helping things!). And it’s killing us slowly.
The vast majority of Americans live mostly-sedentary lifestyles and nearly 4 out of 5 Americans don’t even get the recommended minimum amount of weekly exercise. Physical activity is more and more regarded as an unpleasant experience and/or inconvenience. And exercise is largely considered a commodity.
As if it wasn’t bad enough already, about half of all adults have at least one chronic health condition (e.g. heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes, obesity, and arthritis). HALF! And 1 in 4 adults have 2 or more chronic health conditions. Plus, the TOP THREE causes of death are from preventable lifestyle diseases. Think about that for a moment.
Not to mention that…
1 in 4 adults experiences a diagnosable mental disorder each year.
We’re hopped up on meds like never before, which has all kinds of documented (and undocumented) side effects.
We’ve massively overdosed on stress, which makes everything worse.
And that’s just the beginning! Shall I go on?
Needless to say: things aren’t looking good. The great health experiment has failed. We are in really really bad shape. And get this. There are actually people out there who think that “one weird tip” will do the trick. Obviously, we’ve got our work cut out for us.
So, what do we do about it?
Well, we have an epidemic on our hands – several, actually – and the crisis we’re facing is overwhelming. Today, the status quo is so extreme that it may seem impossible to solve the problem, reverse the trends, and get our nation (and our world) back into good health and fitness. And when you look at the issue from a macro level (e.g. like looking at obesity trends, for instance) – and come up with potential solutions – it is equally mind-boggling and paralyzing. You could even say that it’s a pessimist’s wet dream. And there is no end in sight. At least, not a good end.
But when you look at the issue from a micro level (i.e. like looking at one person’s lifestyle), the solution becomes very clear – even simple – and very difficult, yet doable.
- The solution is clear because more than ever before, we know exactly what we need (e.g. quality sleep, good food, physical activity, etc.). We’ve got scientific research coming out of our ears! And all of the knowledge we have access to today has confirmed that we’ve known the basics of good health and fitness for millennia. It has become abundantly clear that we don’t have a lack of knowledge. We have a lack of application.
- The solution is simple because although health, fitness, and nutrition are all extremely complex, sophisticated subjects, the process of improving them really boils down to a few key basics that will have a huge positive impact. So, yes. Biochemistry is like rocket science, but eating more vegetables and getting more sleep isn’t.
- Of course, the solution is difficult because practically everything in our society today will be working against you (e.g. technology, social norms, expectations, economic and environmental factors, etc.).
- But here’s the thing: we know it’s doable because people like you and I do it all the time. And it’s awesome.
Despite everything working against them, some people still manage to break through it all and make things happen – oftentimes, overcoming incredible circumstances. And these people aren’t the smartest, wealthiest, most capable, etc. They’re just normal people like you and I. They are the exception, not the norm, simply because they choose another path.
So, while you and I can’t solve these culture-wide problems, we can improve our own lives dramatically. All it takes is making a choice to do things differently, which will have an impact on everyone around us.
And that is the solution, folks. That’s exactly what it would take to reverse the trends, and in time, solve our health and fitness predicament.
Now, I know it’s not popular to think about our duties. These days, people don’t want responsibility. But whether you like it or not, you are responsible for your health – and to a degree – for the health of those around you (and certainly those whom you have some responsibility over). And together, we are responsible for the health of our communities, our nation, and our world. The future generations – our children and grandchildren – are counting on us.
So, will you choose to be part of the problem or part of the solution? Will you choose selfishness or selflessness? Will you choose a life of health, vitality, and exuberance in service of others or will you choose a life of disease and over-dependence on others? Please choose wisely. We’re counting on you.
Here’s a great way to get started:
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Health-First Fitness Coach