Are You Ignoring The Signs?

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Today I want to talk about personal accountability for your health.


I recently had several conversations with clients, friends and former clients that made me realize many people are still treating a regular fitness routine as something close to last on their priority list – until it’s too late. Often they neglect exercise and let their body spiral into bad shape for years, and it’s not until their doctor breaks the news to them that they have health problems that they finally decide to make a change. To be honest this strikes a nerve with me, as it's something that hits close to home with my own family history. The last thing I want is for people to go through the pain of watching a loved one suffer from gradually deteriorating health. So I'm writing this article to give you that reality check you might sorely need.



This week I had one client tell me two of her relatives died suddenly from diseases that could have been prevented if they had been more active and physically healthy. A good friend of mine who has just started training with me for 3 weeks admitted that his body has not felt this good for over 3 years, and that he didn’t realize he’d let it slide that far. A former client of mine who has struggled to lose weight most of his life told me that he has no motivation to restart regular exercise, despite all the health risks he is facing.


My answer to these and similar types of situations is this question: you may or may not enjoy exercise; but do you enjoy living a long and healthy life? Is being physically available to spend quality time for your friends and family important to you? Because if it is, it shouldn’t take a health scare from your next check-up at the doctor to give you that hard wake-up call that finally gets you to make regular purposeful exercise a significant part of your life. And yes I do mean Purposeful (as in break a sweat!) exercise, not incidental light activity like walking to the tram stop or taking the stairs at work. 




This may not sound socially acceptable, but I’m going to say it anyway. It shouldn’t be about whether you feel like working out this week, whether you have time in your busy schedule, or even whether you have high fitness goals or not. Those are all excuses distracting you from what really matters.


Everyone has a hectic lifestyle with limited time, and everyone has days where the last thing they want to do is break a sweat. But here’s the thing: you need to make time for it, and yeah sometimes you’ll need to force yourself to get through an exercise session when you’re not in the perfect mood for it (you’ll probably feel much better afterwards anyway!). Because this is your health, your likelihood of living that we’re talking about here. Everything else stems from that; no career, no amount of money in the world will give you back the years you take away from your life by not paying attention to your health today. So you need to make your health #1 on your priority list.





Strive for good news from your next Doctor’s appointment.   


Your doctor feels like a broken record. 

That’s right—he’s sick and tired of telling you how important exercise is to your health because YOU DON’T LISTEN. 

He’s sick of explaining how so many of your health problems will improve or even disappear as the result of a consistent exercise program. 

He’s tired of tallying your controllable risk factors that include physical inactivity and obesity. 

So why does he continue to give you the same lecture? 

Because he’s seen exercise change lives. 

He’s even seen exercise save lives. 


1. Feel Great: The first thing that patients tell their doctor after starting an exercise program is how much better they feel. People don’t realize how bad they feel. They get used to feeling bad. Then when they start exercising they feel so much better.  

Your energy levels boost and you feel great. 

2. Pain Be Gone: Next patients notice a reduction in aches and pains. Chronic muscle and joint pain that they’ve lived with for years begins to fade. For some, joint replacement surgery is postponed. For others, arthritis pain is reduced. 

Your muscles and joints feel better than ever. 

3. Goodbye Coronary Heart Disease: While patients can’t feel this healing benefit of exercise, it is the one that saves lives. Exercise removes two of the major risk factors that lead to heart disease: 1) physical inactivity and 2) obesity. Exercise also increases your good cholesterol (HDL) and lowers your blood pressure. 

Your risk of heart attack or stroke is reduced. 

4. Goodbye Type 2 Diabetes: Patients with type 2 diabetes gain substantial benefits from exercise. Exercise improves the body’s use of insulin, and the related weight loss improves insulin sensitivity. Of course patients with type 2 diabetes need to get guidelines from their doctor before starting an exercise program. 

Your blood sugar levels are better controlled. 

5. Goodbye Sleep Apnea: Patients with sleep apnea are often caught in a destructive cycle. Their weight promotes occurrences of apnea then inadequate sleep promotes weight gain. Regular purposeful exercise prevents this and ensures that your quality of sleep improves. I can honestly tell you that over the past 10 years, most nights of the week I sleep like a baby - as in, lights out as soon as I hit the pillow. I can probably count on one hand the times that I couldn't fall asleep...with my body always being active and recovering from an intense session, it naturally promotes deep unbroken sleep.


With all of these benefits it’s hard to see why anyone would avoid exercise. What’s your excuse?

  • I know you’re tired…exercise gives you energy.
  • I know you’re in pain…exercise alleviates your muscle and joint pain.
  • I know you’d rather stay in bed…exercise makes your sleep more restful.
  • I know you’re pressed for time…exercise improves your efficiency and extends your life.

Take a moment and imagine your ‘ideal you’. 

What does the ‘ideal you’ look like? How does the ‘ideal you’ spend their time? Who would the ‘ideal you’ spend time with? What would the ‘ideal you’ accomplish? 

The distance between you and your ‘ideal you’ is created by laziness. 

When faced with decisions, big or small, do what your ‘ideal you’ would do, rather than taking the easy way out. Don’t think about starting your exercise routine next week or tomorrow; don’t plan to make plans to workout. Ask yourself, what can I do to improve my health today? 


If you have any questions at all about how you should get started or what improvements you should make to your current exercise situation, please don't hesitate to reach out to me. I will always take the time to respond and do my best to help out :)








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