Be thankful; sweat

By Brian Cole, Personal Training Associates

First, I think we should all acknowledge that we’re living in the easiest conditions ever known to our species. While I can fill this page enumerating the advantages we all share, asking you to take a moment and think about it for a bit will personalize the acknowledgment. I rarely value humility but on this subject it dwarfs my natural ego/assertiveness/self-confidence, etc. Thankful Man is all I can offer. Very Thankful to be able to spend my life in these years of human existence.

But these advantageous conditions, like most positives, come with their built-in challenges if taken too far. It appears our culture has taken our abundance way too far. The easy availability of unhealthy processed food is a major contributor to our overweight population. Combine that with all the “labor-saving” devices technology offers, and it becomes clear why health care, and therefore, the insurance to cover it, is so expensive. It’s just supply and demand. Too many relatively sedentary folks eat and drink in an unhealthy manner. So they develop health problems—that cost all of us lots of money.

As I naturally and comfortably cast humility aside, I confidently say: I have the solution to the problems caused by our culture’s abundance. It’s so simple too. Sweat. Sure, we all can and should improve our nutrition but that won’t solve it. Sweat. Most individuals today don’t have to. All individuals need to. Every day. Those of us who regularly seek this body’s cleansing know the rewards. For those to whom this sounds like a foreign language, I have no illusion that my column is going to inspire you to stand up and spend the next hour or so enjoying physical exertion. But one of you may give it some serious thought. And later, after you decide it was your idea all along, you may try it. You may take that first small step. And if you stick with it, two steps tomorrow, three by the weekend, like that, you’ll be rewarded for the rest of your life.

This isn’t about six-pack abs or even flat stomachs. This isn’t about form-fitting t-shirts, perfect legs and butts or wearing bikinis. This is about feeling better, moving with less discomfort and having more daily energy. And I’m saying you can have all that but you can’t have it unless you sweat. So stop looking for some “easy, quick way to...” or for the next stupid diet craze. Just eat and drink in a sound, balanced way and start daily activities you enjoy (hopefully you can find some clues from your youth). Activities that will allow you enough physical effort to sweat.

That’s a simple and effective goal. A goal almost everyone can achieve. Your excuses will not hold up to scrutiny. We have clients from healthy and working to improve to paraplegic working to improve. They all sweat.

Hey it’s summer in Virginia. Just a nice long walk outside in the heat and humidity ought to do for a start.

Back to Articles