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12 Days of Fitness 2014: Day 11 – Are You Winning the War?

December 20, 2014 0 Comments

(This is Part 11 of a 12 part series to provide you with some helpful health and fitness tips over the holiday season)

holiday-weight-gain-torranceThere are two guarantees in life: death and taxes. The rest of course is up for debate. Every politician that runs for office promises no new or reduced taxes (yeah, right) and there are those who claim that their products or techniques reverse the effects of aging or prolong life. (good luck with that one). There are those however that take a very negative, self-defeating mindset when it comes to living a healthy lifestyle thinking “What’s the point?”; “I don’t have time to exercise”; “Why eat healthy? I want to enjoy life.” And the excuses mount on and on until one day it bites them in the backside and it’s too late. Then it becomes, “I’m just old”, “I have a family history”, or “I never had the time.” I’m not here to tell people how to live their lives but what I can share is a perspective that most never think about or worse, don’t even know that it’s going on. So let me share with you some key points regarding everyone’s health that should probably be taught more stringently and you can determine if you’re winning the war or not. Your health is not an entitlement.

  • Cells are the basic units of every living creature. We have approximately 37.2 trillion of them.
  • There are hundreds of different types of cells in the body and with few exceptions are all constantly dividing and regenerating as little as every two days or more than 30 years depending on the type of cell they are.
  • Every time cells regenerate, they have to rely on materials present to carry through with the process. That’s what we provide through our nutrition.
  • Cellular health depends on the quantity and quality of building materials being made available. Think of two buildings that are knocked down and rebuilt – one is made consistently with concrete blocks and the other is also made with concrete blocks but straw is gradually being used in place of the concrete until ultimately the building can’t be erected anymore. Are you providing quality materials to build strong or weak cells?
  • Over time as the cell is provided with less and less quality material it grows weaker to the point where even intermittent good quality materials are brought in can’t be used optimally.
  • The more and more these tired and weak cells are left to their own to survive the sooner they begin to die off and slowly start bringing more of their surrounding neighbors down with them.
  • The body is designed to keep this scenario from happening at all costs and it does an amazing job of doing just that. But in time, there’s only so much it can take, it gets tired, and begins to throw in the towel.
  • The body fat; the unwanted pounds; the high blood pressure; the high cholesterol; the diabetes, etc. are all examples of the cells losing their individual wars.

So what’s one to do?

  • Every single time you ingest something, whether it be food or drink, you are having an affect on the strength and rebuilding of your cells. You can enjoy all there is in life, but be aware that every choice has a consequence.
  • Every day that you’re not engaging in some form of physical activity, the cellular environment gets stale and sludgy, like a body of water with no movement. In time the net effect compounds and makes every effort to the contrary that much harder.

The best advice will never go away. You need to be mindful of your eating; not perfect. You need to engage in regular physical activity; not just for fat loss. You are not only what you eat, but what you absorb. Exercise goes well beyond just sweating for 30 to 60 minutes a day; it’s an inherent need that when our bodies aren’t getting that movement have no choice but to surrender, and not on your terms.

See you tomorrow for the conclusion of the 2014 12 Days of Fitness


Til next time, train smart, eat well, and be better


About the Author:

Jeff Harrison is a fitness coach based in Pottstown, PA. He received a BS in Exercise and Sport Science from Penn State University and is an NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS), NSCA Certified Personal Trainer (NSCA-CPT) and ACE Advanced Health and Fitness Specialist (ACE-AHFS). Jeff's articles have been published in peer-reviewed journals as well as consumer oriented websites and magazines.

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