Many days, as I pedal down a bike path or road, I come across people who are attempting to live a healthier life. Now, they aren’t quite there yet . . . but the effort is there. While in a bike group, I’ve over heard comments from other people discussing the particular weight of an individual or age or how close someone is to a heart attack. My reaction is always the same: “Hey, man, at least he’s trying.”
I am the first one to get aggravated with the individual on oxygen and tipping the scales at 400ish pounds when she is riding a scooter around Wal-mart. It also burns my butt to see two grossly overweight parents in a restaurant shoving fries and other garbage down their already obese children’s throats. And don’t even get me started on the millions of tax dollars funneled into hospitals from Medicare and Medicaid to pay hospital bills of people who have lived a gluttonous and slovenly-kept life (My wife is a nurse. I hear the stories). I won’t even mention the one day a week when morbidly obese people come into the hospital or clinic to have their butts wiped because they can’t reach it. Yes, one day a week. Okay, maybe I did just mention it, but you pushed me to it. I digress.
Back to the people who are actually trying to live a better life, I am very proud of them. I know that I don’t even know them, but I am. My heart goes out to the man or woman who is quietly shuffling or pedaling down a road. There has been a profound moment in that person’s life to say that something has to be done. Many, many times I notice a person who has stopped with his hands folded on top of his head and gasping for breath. Most of the time, I greet the person and roll on . . . when in all actuality, I want to stop and pat him on the back and tell him that he’s doing a great job, not to give up, you’re one step closer than you were, or something encouraging. I wish I had a little sign on my bike that would deploy, with a flip of a switch, and a thumbs-up picture would pop up. For what it’s worth, let me address those who are trying . . .
Whether you just starting or have been at it for a bit, don’t give up. I know that everything hurts or you feel that you are wasting your time. Just take another step or turn the crank one more time. In years to come, you will thank yourself for what you did for you and your family. Think of that. Hold a mental picture of who you want to be and how you want others to see you. Get tough withyou. You must stoke the fire that caused you to rise up, in the first place. Set goals. Talk yourself through it. Don’t make excuses. Don’t create excuses. Eat food that coincides with how hard you work, so that you see results faster. Just don’t give up.
I am not even close to the greatest athlete in the world, but I love to see people enjoying the freedom of a healthier life. Whether I am riding my bike, doing a WOD at Crossfit, or swimming with my family, I feel good. My joy comes from knowing that I doing all that I can to ensure a happier and healthier life for me and my family and being a good example for my children.