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    Frustration with “Un-Fit” Family Members

    August 21, 2010

August 21, 2010

Frustration with “Un-Fit” Family Members

 So this is something that is near and dear to my heart.  But unfortunately, it’s one of the biggest frustrations I live with….because I can’t do anything about it!  What you say?!  You’re a Team Beachbody Coach, you’ve sold P90X, Insanity and a bunch of other “stuff” to hundreds of people and helped change their lives….you’ve helped start 6 Fit Clubs in Charlotte and have coaches all over the country running Fit Clubs…you got all the answers to help people….or so you might think.

The problem is, yes, I can motivate people who I may not even have met before they bought a program from me or came to my Fit Clubs….but I can’t seem to get through to certain family members that Alisha and I have.  And that hurts the most, because they’re family.  Family always comes first right?  Of course.  It’s because of the love that I have for certain people in our families that I struggle so much with the decisions that they make.  I want my family members to be around for a long time.  I want them to see Carly grow up, get married, have kids, all that stuff.  But the path that some of them are on, truly isn’t going to allow that to happen.  And here ensues the problem.  It’s the same problem that I run into with strangers or good friends but the difference is that I feel that because they’re family, I should have more influence.  You can’t make people change.  They have to do it themselves.  It’s just a cold hard fact that I struggle with daily.

The hardest thing I’ve come to understand is that with family members or friends, they have to have what I call the “ah-ha!” moment.  Oprah may have coined that, I can’t remember.  But it’s the moment where they look in the mirror and realize that it’s not about 6 pack abs or tans or any of the superficial stuff.  It’s about blood pressure, cholesterol, heart disease, diabetes…just to name a few.   It’s about the fact that the country seems to be in denial about the obesity trend that’s going on.  Have you ever really looked around yourself when you’re in public?  Seriously?  If you haven’t, it may be because you don’t want to acknowledge what you see, or it could be because you’ve become numb to it.  I find myself doing this a lot.  We’ll be out to eat at a restaurant and I’ll look around and survey not only the people, but what they’re eating.  The first thing I almost always notice is how “fat” a majority of the place is.  I don’t say that to be critical or judgemental….but it’s true.  At the age of 35, I can’t remember a time that I was in a room surrounded by fellow dads of my age where 95% of them didn’t have the “beer belly”.  The next thing I notice is what they’re eating.  I saw a man the other night with a waste so big that he was a good 4-6 inches away from the table and he’s chowing down on steak, fries and some other yellow or brown food.  His entire plate was yellow and brown.  What’s the problem you may ask?  I think you know the answer, but if you don’t here it is.  THERE’S NO FRUITS AND VEGETABLES!  And when I say vegetables, I don’t mean fried squash.  I mean grilled veggies, fresh fruit or God forbid a salad.

People, you need to get serious about your health.  If for no other reason than for your family.  I plead to you to think about what I’m saying.  The reason why I feel so justified to make these comments and yell is because of the picture to the left.  I was one of them.  I was the fat dad going to Sonic and eating like crap.  I remember the joke used to be that I would break a sweat going to check the mail.  Sound familiar?  I also remember trying to workout and failing miserably.  I’d lift weights for a couple of days and nothing would change so I’d quit.  Or I would have every excuse as to time and reasons why I couldn’t do it.  Then one day it took me laying in bed after a serious fall I had and flipping on the TV and seeing the P90X infommercial.  And for some reason, it just caught my attention.  It was also compounded by the fact that every time I went to the doctor my cholesterol was high as was my blood pressure.  It was the fact that my dad’s side of the family has serious heart disease cards stacked against me.  I watched my grandfather die in his hospital bed due to cancer from smoking.  My other grandfather died when I was 5 due to a heart attack.  Then I would look in my daughter’s eyes and ask myself “Is she worth it?”.  Of course she is.  I had my “ah-ha!” moment.  If I could ask God for any power or ability, it would be to induce the “ah-ha!” moment on people who need it and haven’t had it before it’s too late.  But that’s never going to happen.

So what do you do?  First you don’t get discouraged because you’re not in shape.  You accept where you are and you begin the journey.  You do what you can and make it a priority.  You don’t come up to me and tell me that you don’t have time to workout 30 minutes a day for 3-5 days a week….right after you just told me you have 2 hours of Soaps to watch.  Seriously?  Your Soaps are more important than your family and living a healthy life?  The 6 packs of Little Debbie snacks I see you put in your buggie are more important than discovering the use of olive oil with sauteed vegetables?  These are things I’ve observed in my own family people.  It literally drives me crazy.  I want my family members and you to make yourself a priority.  I want you to realize that yes the junk food taste good, but it’s not worth the cost of not seeing your child or grandchild grow up.  It’s not worth the cost of being able to run, bike and play with your kids.  It’s not worth the joy you get when you can live a healthy active lifestyle.  I went from being one of them to slowly becoming one of the most active, fit people I can be.  I’m in love with Karate, hosting Fit Clubs, and working out.  I love the way it makes me feel and you know what?  The superficial stuff is pretty freakin’ cool too.  See that’s like God’s reward for “treating your body like a temple”.  When you take care of yourself, you feel more confident.  You become the “FIT” dad.  Do you know how cool it is to be the 35 year old dad at the pool and feel good about how I look?  That’s not why I did it, but I’ll take it!

The other thing that you have to remember is that it takes time to get from point A to point B.  Instead of stressing and dwelling on your immediate results, enjoy the ride.  Enjoy the experience of learning from your new habits and take in the changes as they slowly happen.  Because as they do, it’ll excite you for what’s to come.  It keeps you motivated to push on.  So that’s my tangent or my passion for fitness.  I prefer passion although I can come across as preaching.  I can’t help it, I feel like I’ve found a meaning in my life and if it helps one person to change their life….then it’s worth it.

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