Healthy Truth – Introduction

the Bible
This entry is part 1 of 13 in the series Healthy Truths

Right now, around the nation, gyms, personal trainers, and fitness instructors are gearing up for their most intense time of year. Americans’ tendency to start their year with a New Year’s resolution regarding health and fitness is so well-known it’s little more than a punch line anymore. The only more common punch line is the tendency of those same Americans to abandon their resolve within a matter of weeks. By March, most gym memberships created in January have been canceled.

The success of our health endeavors has nothing to do with the condition of one’s body. It has everything to do with what’s in our hearts and minds.

Perhaps you’re like me and you’ve contributed to that punch line before, after a year or more of contributing to your waistline instead. This year, though, you’ve decided to do things different.

You’re not going to give up again like last time, or the time before. No more excuses. You really mean it this time. You’ve failed before, so know you know the pitfalls. You’ve got a partner to hold you accountable. You’ve prepaid a year at the gym to keep you driven. You’ve budgeted for a personal trainer for the next six months. You’ve bought a new pair of jeans a couple sizes smaller to inspire you. Recognize any of that?

The Reason We Fail

As a personal trainer, general student of the industry, and former fitness delinquent, it’s a familiar refrain to me, too. But for all the reasons I’ve seen people fail, either as clients or as friends (or as that strange-looking fellow in the mirror), I believe that very very few of them failed because of any reason outside of one: they were deceived.

Since the Garden of Eden, lies have ruthlessly plagued humanity, leading to both death and a hollowed out version of life. Fitness is certainly not an exception to this rule. Our depravity as a race corrupts all aspects of our lives, including our health. This deception is why we fail.

Some Examples

It affects everyone, from all walks, with all experiences.

I’ve trained with a person who had an uncanny body and was able to achieve and maintain a high level of fitness without any real deliberation or strenuous effort. Yet this wasn’t always the case. He had not been in good condition at all, having a sedentary job that required little from him for decades. Then came a day when he faced and embraced some core truths, and he worked his way into the condition he’s in today. It took work, but he’s now able to do very little to keep himself where he’s at because he’s now taking advantage of the truths he’s internalized.

Not everyone gets dealt such a good hand. I trained one guy who faced severe obesity and multiple strokes. Then, he was hit with a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis. Yet he faced all that with a firm resolve that drove him to success despite the intense adversity he faced. He had refused to be deceived even by the apparently terrible hand he’d been dealt. And his overall health continues to improve even as MS does its best to thwart him.

The success of our health endeavors has nothing to do with the condition of one’s body. It has everything to do with what’s in our hearts and minds.

After all, for every one of these success stories, there’s a long line of others who don’t stick with it, and they, too, have a variety of bodies. One guy I trained wasn’t even overweight, but he wanted to improve his overall health, yet he wasn’t willing to put in the time it took to do it. Another put in the time, three times, and then quit. One person I trained with established a strict diet and exercise regimen, only to quit after winning a bet on how much weight he could lose in a certain amount of time.

We all start from a different place, and we all progress at a different pace, but so many people drop off before progress has a chance to be made. Excuses abound, but all of them center on some basic, fundamental deceptions.

Healthy Truths

I can usually tell which clients will succeed based on how much or how little they embrace these principles.

The better a client grips reality, the better their training will go, and the more their satisfaction in their fitness will spill over into the rest of their lives — which is far more preferable than their frustration in their lack of fitness draining from the rest of their lives.

I try to present a truth-oriented, sober assessment to my clients from the start, focusing on imparting some core principles. I can usually tell which ones will succeed based on how much or how little they embrace these principles.

Health is far more connected to beauty than to appearance, and if you think about that for a moment, you probably know it to be true on some level. Yet the diet culture that has fraudulently assumed the mantle of authority on fitness in America would have you reject that reality and instead embrace their various models which have earned a whole 5% success rate. Rather than assuming that industry gets it wrong 95% of the time, they convince you that only 5% do things right. And you can keep buying their products until you, too, become a five-percenter. Really? It’s no surprise that Jes Baker writes, “the suspension of disbelief is the engine upon which diet culture runs.”

So, if you’re going to give fitness a go this year, be it to look better for your spouse, extend your longevity, counter disease, or even to improve your sex life (seriously, studies show it works), it’s time to internalize some basic healthy truths.

Over the next few weeks, I’ll present a list of twelve Healthy Truths that you should write on your heart. If you do, you’ll be equipped for success. Getting these truths embedded in your soul is far more important than CrossFit vs. Zumba, personal trainer vs. fitness consultant, or any question of diet or rep ranges or celebrity endorsement.

So, read on, and start off the coming year right.

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About Phil (244 Articles)
Philip Osgood is a Christian husband, father, and writer who considers himself a passable video game player, fiction reader, camping and hiking enthusiast, welder, computer guy, and fitness aficionado, though real experts in each field might just die of laughter to hear him claim it. He has been called snarky, cynical, intelligent, eccentric, creative, logical, and Steve for some reason. Phil and his beautiful wife Clara live in Texas with their children in a house with a dog but no white picket fence. He does own a titanium spork from ThinkGeek, though, so he must be alright.