“The first wealth is health.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson
Start with Health
At age five, I enrolled in kindergarten. Then I moved to elementary school, middle school, high school, and college. My times in college were fun coupled with working productively and playing hard as I had my first alcoholic drink during my freshman year.
But after years of social conditioning thinking formal education is the only path to success, I made schoolwork my number one priority.
Investing in an internship during my senior year in college helped me land a job after graduation. Because the workplace was in the San Francisco Bay Area, California, I moved back home to live with my parents for convenience and increased savings.
After transitioning from college to the professional world, I quickly shifted my focus to building my career. To make a positive early first impression on my fellow coworkers, I would go to work early and stay late.
Unconsciously, I was following society’s definition of success defined by having the following:
Dedicating most of my time chasing success, I didn’t have much left to take care of my health. As a result, my body and mind slowly deteriorated.
It didn’t help that my mom always made delicious yet unhealthy food.
And after just one short year in the professional world, I had gained fifteen pounds of fat. Often times I felt sluggish and lethargic.
The only thing I wanted to do after work was to eat and sleep so I can get ready for the next day.
In addition, running errands and maintaining my social life filled most of my weekends. Rarely did I dedicate time to taking care of my health by exercising and eating nutrient-dense food.
Health Transformation Journey
But what tipped the scale and allowed me to make a lifelong change was that one memorable night. I was in the bathroom getting ready to take a shower and saw myself in the mirror. To say the least, I wasn’t happy with I witnessed.
There were fats hanging on the sides of my body that I have never had before.
As I leaned closer towards the mirror, I became more disgusted with myself. I didn’t like the heavy feeling of carrying around the extra weight. Feeling sluggish and lethargic, I felt insecure about my body. Angry emotions erupted as I slammed the bathroom sink and said:
“ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!”
“Stand up and take action!”
“Do something, do anything!”
“I’m sick and tired of feeling lethargic!”
“This is not me and I will make a change!”
That night, I made a lifelong commitment to myself to never look like that again. It catalyzed my health transformation journey.
The first thing I did was research online for the best workouts and healthy eating habits. I watched endless exercise videos on YouTube and started doing them. It didn’t work although being consistent for a few months.
But despite the lack of results, I didn’t give up. The momentum of taking action propelled me to work harder. Desperately looking for answers, I asked my friends. Fortunately, they introduced me to a workout program.
With a level ten commitment, I followed it religiously. Every day after work, I went straight home and did the exercises. In addition, I also said “no” to my mom’s cooking.
She didn’t take it too well. But I had to do what was necessary to get the results I wanted. Slowly but surely, the extra weight started to disappear and I was back to my former weight.
Filled with energy, I was ready to take on the world. After getting bored with the regimented workouts, I wanted to try something new.
I started running.
My fondness for running caused me to sign up for a half marathon. One led to another and eventually to a full marathon. Afterward, I started cycling and that led to two century rides.
Now my current focus is swimming because my goal is to do an Ironman.
All these milestones are constant reminders to push me forward. But the ultimate objective is longevity filled with vibrant health.
Benefits of Living a Healthy Lifestyle
With consistent exercise, healthy eating habits, and meditation sessions, I have made living a healthy lifestyle a daily practice. As a result, I have more energy, confidence, and equanimity to go after the things that are important to me. Here are some of the benefits:
I’m more engaged at work.
I have the confidence to face my fears and any challenges I encounter.
I’m grounded and present throughout the day.
I tell you all this because I want to inspire you to take your health more seriously.
Do you want to have more energy?
Do you want to have the confidence to pursue what is most important to you?
Do you want to have the groundedness to live your life aligned with your values?
If so, then start investing in your health. Imagine a few years from now after you have worked on your body and mind.
You’re at the peak of your health and are doing things you once thought were impossible.
You have the energy to play your favorite sport.
You have the confidence to talk to that beautiful woman or start your business.
You have the calmness to be resolute in difficult situations.
How great would it feel if you can do all that? You would wish you have started earlier.
The Negatives of Remaining the Same
Unfortunately, the opposite is true as well.
Imagine five years have passed and you didn’t do anything to improve your health. It might be the same or worse.
You’ll still be dissatisfied with your health but still wanting to make a change.
Your family and friends will be afraid to lose you because of your poor conditions.
This reality is closer than you think.
Consistency and Dedication
Your body is your sacred temple. You only have one, so please take care of it. Feed it with healthy nutrients.
Imagine this, if you have an expensive sports car, would you fill it up with low-quality gasoline? Absolutely not, so why would you do that to your body?
You don’t have to be impeccable all the time because perfection doesn’t exist. However, there’s perfect effort. Focus on eating foods that are closest to their natural form. This means eating whole and raw foods.
Diversify your food sources to get plenty of essential nutrients. Eating healthy can be more expensive, but that’s because you’re used to eating processed foods that are cheap.
You can spend money on healthy foods now or use it to pay your medical bills later. You can fight for what you want now or fight against what you don’t want later.
The choice is yours.
The price you pay for living an unhealthy life is the poor quality of life.
What’s the value of your money if you don’t have the health to enjoy it?
Is the extra money you save by not eating healthy worth the time you will truncate from your life?
Your time is your most valuable asset, so increase it by living a healthy lifestyle. Prevention is the best cure for all diseases.
Fortunately, you can initiate that process by investing in your health. Start now, don’t waste another second.
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