Unleashing Your Inner Olympian


I was talking to a diabetic patient of mine one day who was was worried about the an upcoming trip to Disney with his grand-daughter where he would have to do more walking than he was accustomed to. I asked him if he exercised. He held up his hand in a “stop right there” gesture and said, “Do not speak to me about exercise, I follow the religion of comfort and exercise is uncomfortable.” His statement left me completely speechless (and if you knew me you would appreciate how uncharacteristic that is).

This is for all of you who have lost touch with your inner Olympian.

Couch Potatoes Arise!

More than two thirds of us are overweight, diabetes is an epidemic and preventable heart disease is disabling and/or killing us, so why do so many of us still hold to my patient’s “religion of comfort”?

Maybe it’s the big screen TV, the recliner chair with the cup holder, and the remote with 200 channels. Or maybe it’s the computer and the Internet. With the virtual world sitting in our laps why go out and explore the real one? To find the motivation to exercise we must unleash our inner Olympian!

Life is an Adventure

If you think back for a minute and remember some of the high points of your life. I bet none of them occurred in front of the TV or computer. Not that those aren’t entertaining past times, it’s just that they don’t ask anything of you. You sit passively and consume whatever you are fed.

Life’s adventures are active – you try something new, you travel somewhere, you meet someone new, you practice something to get better at it. It’s the ultimate 3D experience because life is happening in, around and through you, in full color, tickling all of your senses.

The Olympian Spirit

Whether it’s running a marathon, climbing a mountain or just walking to the mailbox and back without getting short of breath, it’s the spirit you bring to things that creates the adventure. When you connect with your inner Olympian, exercise will become a pleasurable necessity in your life rather than a chore. That is what you are shooting for.

When you think “Olympian” maybe you are thinking of famous athletes like Michael Phelps or Shaun Johnson who become rich and famous. But they are the exception not the norm. Most Olympians never become famous and they go home from the Olympics to live lives just like yours. No, it’s not the fame and money that drives Olympians – it’s something else. To understand what I’m talking about think about the Special Olympians, people with handicaps who reach outside themselves to find out what they’ve got and to have fun.

Going for Your Own “Personal Best”

Seeking health and fitness through exercise should be a fun adventure that gives you a chance to bring out the very best in yourself. Whatever activity you choose (and it doesn’t matter what it is) – enjoy it. Physical activities that give you pleasure will be activities you want to return to again and again.

Set yourself some goals. It doesn’t matter what they are as long as they matter to you. Then go for them. Be faithful. Keep showing up. Being faithful to your goals and the simple passage of time will surprise you – sooner or later.

And once you’ve achieved one goal, raise the bar and go for another goal. Before long you will realize that going after things that you decide are important and meaningful is the point of life after all. Your life will have a powerful new force in it – your inner Olympian will be unleashed at last.

This information is offered for educational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, prescribe or treat. For that please seek direct care from a health professional.

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1 comment so far. Add yours below.

#1 | On March 25, 2011, PC Recycling said:

If you plan on attending the show, you’ll want to make sure to be a part of the unleashing.He has a peg leg from when a whale bit him.I have taken classes from the eight artists featured in this book including the author,Lynne Perrella.

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