Most people have a hard time investing time and money in something that does not produce a tangible return. When we are unable to see the results of the efforts we make, it may be hard to stay motivated to work toward our goal. This happens frequently with health, as many of the investments we make today are not realized until later in life.
We all hear the mantra, "Eat less, exercise more." But how many of us say, "I'll do that tomorrow" or "I'll start my diet next week?" We tend to think we're invincible and would rather indulge today than follow healthy diets and get regular exercise for something that may not pay off for years.
Committing to a healthy lifestyle takes dedication - no one will argue with that. The key to staying on track with good health is to look to the future. Although sometimes it's hard to live past today, we will not truly understand the effects of the decisions we are making unless we determine how we want our lives to be in the future. Think about these statistics: overweight individuals die 3.2 years earlier than normal weight people. And those who are obese will lose 6.5 years. Two-thirds of the U.S. population, those who are overweight and obese, are cutting YEARS off their lives!
I've heard the argument from people who just don't care about dying prematurely, as long as they can enjoy their lives today. However, it is not only years that people are losing, it's also quality of life. People who maintain a healthy weight report having more energy, feeling more productive, having less stress, and they're better able to deal with the demands that everyday life presents. They are obviously going to be enjoying life a lot more than those who are overweight and inactive.
Most people go through a serious medical event at some point in their lives; broken hips, strokes, bypass surgery, or cancer is common. Individuals who eat right and exercise throughout their lives will delay these events between 7 and 13 years. Think of all you could accomplish in that amount of time. Not to mention the medical bills and medication costs that will pile up.
By investing a little bit of time and energy today, you are insuring a full, rich life well into old age. Regular physical activity and a healthy diet actually stop the process in your cells that leads to chronic diseases. And research has shown that a healthy diet and exercise can have a greater impact on health than most of the common medications doctors routinely prescribe.
So when you think about reasons to stay healthy, try to look toward the future. You'll thank yourself later.
In 2001, 70% of all cancer deaths could have been prevented or significantly delayed by a healthy diet, a tobacco-free lifestyle, and regular exercise. 82% of heart disease deaths could be prevented.
Rachel Lukasavige is a Health Coach at Lukas Coaching. Visit www.lukascoaching.com/resources.htm for a ton of free tools to help you improve your health, finances, business, career & life!
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