- High Blood Pressure, Triglycerides, and Diabetes (oh my!) The general “exercise is good for your health” admonition when you are young and energetic falls on deaf ears. When your doctor gives you scientific data on the deterioration of your body and risk factors at middle age, it can be a wake up call. Triglycerides levels are directly related to exercise and diet. Everything that is attacking or killing the people your age can be mitigated with a good diet, exercise, and smart health decisions. I’d really like to avoid stroke and heart attack. I don’t want diabetes. Period. Exercise and diet are no guarantees but I want to give my body a fighting chance.
- Fat Pictures No, these pants do not make me look fat. The extra 40 pounds on my frame make me look fat. Looking at my picture from the side I noticed jowls. I do not want jowls. The straight on mirror shot is not too bad and I can suck in my stomach for a quick fix but other views cannot hide the body only a desk job could love. Yes I am a bit vain about my appearance, though not obsessively so. I’d like carved abs instead of looking like a soon to be carved turkey so I crunch. I remember my beefcake pictures from the year of exercising faithfully and would like a repeat.
- Struggling Old People When I see an old person walking or standing up with great difficulty I think, “there but for the grace of God and some smart decisions go I.” There are no guarantees but if I exercise now I’ll build my bones and muscles instead of allowing them to deteriorate as they will do when not challenged. Of course disease or other factors could debilitate me and I’ll be pushing a walker but I’d rather be taken down by a cause than to be a weak old man because I didn’t get my tail off the couch and fight to keep the muscles. I hope to be one of those old people who still have a spring in their step and are able to walk, work, and enjoy life because they trained their body to be strong.
- Grandchildren To Be Named Later Since my oldest child is 18 years old, I hope it will be many years before I have grandchildren. But, if I am so blessed, I want to be able to walk and play with them as much as possible. Thinking about reason #1, I want to live to see them so I need to give my body the best odds of surviving until they arrive on the scene. I also want to be an energetic old grandfather who takes them to museums, playgrounds, and trips. In order to have that strong body, I need to start building today.
- A Happy and Prosperous New Me. Exercise helps reduce or remove depression without the unpleasant side effects of medication. I feel better about myself and have more positive energy when I’m active. This helps me perform better at work and helps me build confidence. I am able to deal with work pressures so much better, especially when I can exercise during the middle of the work day. In addition to a more positive attitude at work, a healthy life means more working years when I should have the experience and wisdom to be in better paying jobs within my industry. I want to minimize the chance of being taken out by injury and disability before the prime earning years. Economic stability also helps keep depression away.
Whatever motivates you to get in shape and stay in shape, embrace it. The motivation must come from within. No amount of preaching by your doctor or spouse will motivate you. You must find the reasons that you want to maximize your health and let it build a better you for tomorrow.