This is the real live story of one of the scariest experiences of my life.
As you may imagine, I live a pretty healthy lifestyle.
(PRO TIP: One of my favorite hacks for staying consistent with your fitness is NAMING A F*CKING GYM AFTER YOURSELF.)
You may think I’d always feel easy, breezy about my health.
But I gotta confess, I suffer from some neurotic tendencies when it comes to my health (among other topics, if I’m being real).
A few years ago, your author noticed some scary-feeling rhythms in his heart. For anyone who’s experienced this, it’s damned disconcerting.
Happily I have an amazing doctor. I reached out immediately, and after being assured that it was likely not a big deal, I went to a cardiologist. We did a bunch of tests, just to be safe. I was told my heart was very strong and healthy and the occasional extra beats were nothing to worry about.
Now I knew death was probably NOT imminent. But human brains are a funny thing. Between my original doctor chat until the cardiologist gave me the all clear, I sincerely felt my days were numbered.
In particular, I remember going on our yearly apple picking day with my wife Shina and our dog Gizmo. The whole time I couldn’t escape the heavy feeling that this was my LAST TIME PICKING APPLES.
Alas, we all know who wins when your forebrain and your lizard brain get into a tussle…
The reality is we are all going to get older. And the vast majority of us will face health challenges. While genetics matter, your behaviors are going to play a role. And while I’m certainly not without my vices, I’m committed to lifestyle behaviors that support my physical (and mental!) health.
This difficult experience was mercifully short with a happy ending. But it drove home the truth of this proverb…
A human who has their health has 1000 dreams.
A human without it has only one.
I tend to focus on the benefits of fitness in these love letters. After all, there are a LOT of good things that come from fitnessing: higher energy levels, clearer thinking, improved mood, better stress management, increased confidence, etc.
But when we regularly exercise, eat nourishing foods, and take care of our sleep and recovery, we’re also going to be more resilient to the slings and arrows of poor health.
When you’re nudging yourself to hit the gym for that workout you really don’t want to do, it;s usually best to focus on what you gain. Sustainability is best created by “moving towards.”
But while I’m no scaremonger, it’s also true that not taking action has a cost. And one of the most reliable kinks in the human brain is an aversion to loss. So sometimes this crowbar can get you movin’.
Let’s be clear: you’re in charge of your life. I want the best for you, but ultimately you are the boss.
If you’re currently stoked on your levels of fitness and your lifestyle behaviors? Jumping high five to you! I hope you’re feeling a lot of self-esteem and personal pride for making “the hard choices that make an easy life.” It’s not easy to do and I salute you!
But if you know you’ve been indulging a bit more heavily than ideal…
Or you’ve been skipping some — or all — of your workouts…
That’s ok. That’s normal.
However, I want to make sure you get to have 1000 dreams.
So I hope this is received as a gentle nudge to make some time for fitness.
And as always, if you want some friendly experts to help, your ol’ pals at MFF stand at the ready.
Life-affirming and consent-confirmed squeeze of your knee,