July 30, 2015

Stop, Start, Stop, Start

General Health

Happy end of July everyone! (Wait…what?!)

Before you know it, schools will be back in session, schedules will be busy-busy again, and Christmas decorations will be out (ok, let’s hope not THAT soon).

Much like a school year, I think people sometimes think that weight loss has a start and stopping point. We plan for that class reunion, that wedding, or other big event, and once it’s completed then what? It’s almost like we go on “summer break” until the next event comes on the calendar, and we start over again.

We see the satisfaction in a short-term goal—we may lose weight quickly, and go to more ‘drastic’ measures to gain a certain image. When we have “something” (a date, a dress, old classmates, etc) to work towards, it becomes a focal point of our efforts. We are more inclined to work out daily, eat less calories, and give up some of the foods that we enjoy, but we know it will ‘be worth it’.

Why can’t we or why don’t we feel the same about lifestyle changes that help us gain health and help us live longer and feel better? You know, the things that should matter?

We have to place a value on our health, and how we want to feel. Certainly there are health ailments that we cannot control, but I’m talking about the ones that our lifestyle has a direct effect on, such as weight, blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes.

One of the cool programs that Fort HealthCare offers is the Movin’ and Losin’ adult and kids program. Both programs are designed to help change your lifestyle, and to get you excited about health. My friends Heidi Jennrich and Alyssa Villareal are in charge of the kid’s program, and I am one of the facilitators for the adult program.

With the Movin’ and Losin’ adult program, we have a goal to make learning about lifestyle modification fun, educational, and attainable. The class is two days a week (Mondays and Wednesdays) and both days incorporate a mini discussion about a health-related topic. These are presented by various individuals at Fort HealthCare (doctors, nurses, health coaches, dieticians, etc) who all have a vast knowledge base in what they’re presenting.  These topics include exercise, stretching, sleeping, support, stress, reading nutrition labels, and MORE. After we do the presentation, it’s time to exercise!

Now, we aren’t doing anything over-the-top like training for a marathon, or walking 100 flights of stairs, BUT, we will offer lots of equipment choices, different workouts, and a little sweating. The hour FLIES by, and there is such a sense of accomplishment from exercising and taking the time to learn about whatever the health topic is.

We are going on our third round of this 24-week class, and I cannot tell you how much I’ve learned from all of the presenters, and our department’s intern Cody who has revamped the exercise component of the class. The success of the class has skyrocketed with many of the changes that have been implemented within the last session, and it is SO cool to see and hear testimonials of how much better the participants are feeling, and the knowledge they are gaining.

Health is so much more than the number on the scale. It is the lunch you bring to work; the amount of sleep you get daily; the aches and pains you feel from stress, and so much more.

By improving our health in one, two, or a multitude of ways, you are giving yourself that opportunity to feel the best you can feel, which in turn, will keep you wanting to keep up the path you are on health-wise.  This will also help to stop the “on again, off again” mentality that so many of us fixate on. You owe it to yourself to start the journey today, and to make each day the BEST it can be.

Until next time!