Fit For Life: Everything’s Changing – How Are You Doing?

Sunday, December 04, 2016


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This week I had a bittersweet moment. It was my last time training the seniors on my high school football team that I work with. Most of them had been with me since I started 4 years ago, and it was great watching these kids develop into great athletes. This was the toughest group to watch go, because I had trained them the longest, and really enjoyed working with them. This is a good example of how personal growth can sting sometimes, but at the same time something positive has happened.

This week begins the last month of the year! How exciting! Many of us are busy preparing for the holidays, year-end celebrations and tying up loose ends. Many people also get depressed this time of year – and - I think a big part of it is due to one simple thing...CHANGE.

Year end and holidays remind us how things have changed and what will continue to change in the new year. But - many of us don't like change and have a hard time adjusting. We'd rather keep things as is. But, if things and times don't change, then progress doesn't happen.

Yes, it’s hard to know I won’t be training these senior football players anymore, but a good amount of them will carry on and play college ball. This is an example of a positive change that is happening to many lives. From them, to their parents, to the coaches, and teachers that helped mold young impressionable lives – all positive change.

I'm at a point in my life where I embrace change. I tend to jump in with no hesitation believing that failure is never an option. I love learning and growing and challenging myself to accomplish things that are truly out of my comfort zone.  I wasn’t always like this. I used to like to leave things the way they were; but several years ago I learned that in order to improve at anything in life, you can’t keep doing what you are doing and expect growth.

So after years of workshops and self-help books and tapes, I love to make changes. If I can do something better, or if I find a product that’s better and more efficient, I’m all over it, and willing to sacrifice the comfort of what I know vs the fear of the unknown, to make improvements in my life. The world is constantly evolving and changing for the better, and if you aren’t willing to make changes, you will miss out and be left behind.

There is one exception to what I am talking about. There is one thing that has been the same since the evolution of man. This is the one thing that can’t change, and if you do make changes, negative things happen to you. The thing that can’t - and won’t - change is the formula for ultimate health and fitness.

And here it is:

Drink clean water: The population has changed to soft drinks loaded with sugar and chemicals that has caused the demise of the human population. If you made this change, hit rewind and go back to drinking water only.

Eat whole unprocessed food: When we made the change to genetically modify our food, and have a diet of primarily processed manmade garbage, the instances of death and disease keep on climbing. Before you know it, 75% of the population will either have diabetes, cancer, heart disease, or become obese. So, if these items consume your nutrition plan, let’s make a change back to eating off the land, and consuming only whole and organic foods.

Sleep 8 hrs. Most of us live such a high paced life, we lack sleep. Folks work longer, and watch way too much TV, and miss out on their sleep. There are too many reasons why rest is important to list here, but muscle recovery, and a strong immune system are both by-products of solid rest. So if you aren’t getting enough sleep, it’s time to make a change in your routine, and get to bed earlier.

Exercise 30 minutes a day. If you aren’t doing some kind of movement based exercise daily, it’s time to change the routine and get it in. What, no time? Providence Fit Body Boot Camp runs 30 minute sessions guaranteed to get you results. We run 11-13 daily, so the excuse with time is irrelevant. You need to move and stay active in order to become fit and healthy, so find the time to get this in.

Change is tough. It’s scary and uncomfortable, and can be sad at times, but we all need to do our best to embrace it and move forward. Some changes are forced on us. Like the change my team will be making. It’s part of the process for people to grow and move on. You parents have felt it, or will eventually, and that’s not a bad thing. Yes it’s sad to say goodbye, but when you look at the road ahead, it’s necessary because the future holds promise.

Some changes need to be made voluntarily. Like a change in lifestyle if you are sick or out of shape, or change in a career when you plateau and stop growing, or changing a relationship that’s toxic. Yes, it’s hard but living an average, or below average, and unhappy life is a lot worse. “I have never done that before”, or “that's not how we usually do things” are two of the most dead-end statements you can make. Those are statements sure to halt all personal growth.

Folks, the world is constantly changing and we all need to embrace change in order to grow.

My advice for today is to find a few things in your life that need to improve in order for you to become happier and more content. Than focus on making small changes daily and creating good habits for yourself. When change occurs that you can’t control, find the positives and focus on that, and don’t worry about the way things were, think of how things are going to be.

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Matt Espeut, GoLocal's Health & Lifestyle Contributor has been a personal trainer and health & fitnesss consultant for over 25 years. He is the owner of Fitness Profiles, a one on one, and small group personal training company, as well as Providence Fit Body Boot Camp, located at 1284 North Main St., on the Providence/Pawtucket line. You can reach Matt at (401) 453-3200; on Facebook at "Matt Espeut", and on Twitter at @MattEspeut. "We’re all in this life together – let’s make it a healthy one!


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