Be the Example

Posted: July 28, 2013 in fitness, health, motivation
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Well, here’s a shocker, you can’t shame someone into being healthy. In fact, you might just have the opposite effect.

One more (actual) shocker,  I sometimes have credible sources to back up my opinions.

This peer reviewed journal, from PLOS ONE, has the results of a study that looked at the BMI’s of over 6,000 Americans with varying body types.  If you don’t feel like reading the whole thing, which I highly recommend doing, there are two main takeaways:

1)    People who were already obese at the first check-in (2006) were three time’s more likely to remain obese at the next check-in (2010) if they had experienced weight discrimination.

2)    Overweight people who experienced this discrimination at the first check-in were more than two times as likely to become obese by second check in.

What does this mean to you and me?  Simple.

Negativity doesn’t do jack when it comes to motivating people to be healthy.

You can’t shame somebody into being healthy.  While this study looked at people who were overweight and obese, it applies to any aspect of being healthy.  Just as you can’t force someone to alter their lifestyle to drop those extra pounds, you can’t force a skinny person to make changes so they aren’t just skin and bone.

The only way you can get those around you to take control of their health is to make changes yourself and lead by example.  That’s how I got started and that’s how some of the people around me got started.

I saw a friend get healthy and thought, “Man, I want to do that.  I can do that.”  

I know that some of the actions my family have taken towards being healthy were somewhat influenced by me.  The same goes for a few of my friends, some of which I had no idea even struggled with body issues until I began writing this blog.

What not to do

Don’t go force feeding your healthy lifestyle down the throats of people you care about by criticizing their choices.  So they got a Big Mac for lunch, not your issue.  It’s their life and their body.  All you can do is stay on your path, if they want to hop on the wagon, then it’s your job to support that decision.

You can’t force people to go work out or be active.  Now, I will shame the hell out of my workout partner if he bails on a gym day, that’s the relationship we have and it’s how we hold each other accountable.  What I won’t do is look at that same person who got the Big Mac and say, “Wow, you’re gonna eat that and not workout?  Good one.” 

Why?  Because that’s how you get labeled as a douche-rocket.

What to do

You’re own damn thing.  It’s that simple.

Eat right.  Exercise regularly.  Be the example.  Whether your trying to lose or gain, people will notice and inevitably somebody will decide they want what you’re working for.

Speaking from experience, finding out that other people are motivated by your actions will in turn motivate you even more.  On those tough days when I’m tired, sore, or just plain out of it: I keep going because somebody else is counting on me to do so.

Moral of the story:  Don’t be this guy.



– Moody




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