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You can lead a horse to water...

Posted by eric on December 4, 2011

I realize that I have a bit of a skewed view - I've been into fitness for as long as I can remember. Joined a running club in high school, continued running and weightlifting throughout college, and married a fitness buff who's now a personal trainer. So maybe that's why I simply can't understand why so many people are so unwilling to address fundamental problems with their lifestyles that will end up impacting their longevity and quality of life.

Why is that?

I suppose if I knew the answer to that question, I wouldn't be troubled over helping my wife start up her fitness business. Given it's no secret that:

  • Being overweight causes numerous health issues
  • Processed foods contain chemicals that our bodies really shouldn't be ingesting
  • Exercise helps stave off the effects of aging
  • Living healthy increases your odds of living longer, more robust lives

People should be flocking to nutritionists, personal trainers, and other wellness advisors for help in addressing shortfalls in their diet and exercise plans. Or for most of them, to start a nutrition and exercise regimen. But instead, even given multiple opportunities to invest less than the price of that latte they purchase every day in their health, they choose to continue down the same path.

It's frustrating. It's difficult. It's painful to watch those you're close to - family you love, friends you hang out with, parents of your children's friends - make those negative, life-altering choices. I want my friends and family to grow old with me. Not that exercise and nutrition will guarantee a long life, but it certainly is more likely not to cause a short one.

So my new challenge is to try and understand the psychology of the out-of-shape. Perhaps it's a belief that exercise is too difficult. Perhaps they feel they're too far along the path of poor choices. Whatever it is, I want to discover how to change their minds - truly convince them through words, actions, whatever it takes. Not so I can retire early (it's getting a little late for that) - but so I can retire with those I hold dear. If I figure it out, I'll pass it along. We all need to do what we can to help.

Stay fit everyone.

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