The Business of Setting A Healthy Example….

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A chance meeting

While working out at the gym the other day, I was exercising alongside a gentleman who seemed to be happily giving it his all. He looked to be a healthy gentleman approximately in his mid-50’s,  This guy was really enjoying himself!  He commented to me that he was “trying to keep this old body limber.”  I replied, “yeah, after 50 it isn’t so easy”……… as this was my own experience! His response was, “yes……well, I’m 83.” I almost dropped the dumbbell in my hand. I couldn’t believe it. This man looked amazing!!

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We struck up and conversation and my curiosity got the best of me.   I decided to dig deeper into his wellness history. I asked him if he had always worked out and eaten healthy. He shared his lifestyle story with me…. and it was amazing. He said that in his younger years, when his friends would head out to the local bars after work, he would head to an underground gymnasium to exercise for a few hours. In the years that followed, he worked to remain mindful of his eating habits and worked out diligently. He and his wife, (who are now celebrating 64 yrs of marriage), went on to have 4 children.  He very proudly told me that all of his children graduated from college. The good news?  He didn’t even have to pay for two of them.

Consistency has a trickle down effect

Through the years, this man’s family followed his lead by eating healthy, exercising, and taking care of themselves.   As a result, two of his children went all the way through college on athletic scholarships. His grandson had also been awarded an athletic scholarship. His entire family had been influenced by his example of self-care, fitness, and healthy eating.  This lifestyle became the cornerstone of their family story.bicyclists-1405997_1920

The trickle-down effect of this man’s life choices on his family are further proof that healthy living can be a generational choice that can continue to enrich the lives of loved ones. In an article on the PBS website by Food & Fitness,  author Len Saunders states that “By setting the basic foundations of life, parents are the number one source affecting the way children feel about living a healthy lifestyle.” “The bottom line: children are watching their parents’ every move, mirroring their every action; if a parent is sedentary, there is a good chance their children will be too. However, parents who eat healthily and exercise with their children on a regular basis are teaching them many valuable lessons.”

Healthy eating habits, exercise, and a positive mindset are practices that can not only give us the best chance for a strong, healthy, and long life.   It’s important to note that these choices can also have a profound effect on the health of our families for generations to come!