Joel Peterson, Personal Trainer

Joel Peterson – Level 5 Personal Trainer Apple Athletic Club

Way back in 1946 in the year I was born, there was a statement made by the World Health Organization:

Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.

A friend asked me a while back, “What is your biggest frustration as a personal trainer and health coach?” That’s easy – my clients pay me good money to ignore my advice. I’ll bet that is also the biggest frustration of most doctors and health providers.

Clients come to me after years of assaulting their bodies with the consumption of devitalized, chemically laden, processed to death (literally) garbage while their main exercise is chewing food, and expect some magic formula to health without having to change their lifestyle.

I don’t know how many times I’ve heard “this is just not working” or “it’s been three weeks now since I started exercising and eating an apple every day and I’m still weak and overweight.” I want to cry! After thirty, forty or fifty years of neglecting any resemblance of living a healthy lifestyle, they expect a three-week or a three-month miracle. Friends, the journey to good health from bad health is just that – a journey!

Good Health Good Life

The great news is that even though it may have taken us years or decades to damage our health it only takes a fraction of that time to repair our health. God created us with an amazing ability to rapidly heal our bodies. But let’s be realistic about it. If you’re going to get discouraged in a few weeks, especially from a halfhearted attempt at healthy living, you are, well, unrealistic.

I have seen many miracles take place in dozens of my clients. And I’ve sadly seen too many failures. What made the difference? I can boil it down to two major factors:

  1. The successful ones did what I asked them to do.
  2. The successful ones were patient and PERSISTENT.

I believe both of these factors boil down to this: Successful clients wanted it bad enough! Wouldn’t you think everyone would? Do you?

Successful Journeys

Let me use a real life example to illustrate my point. A 40ish man came to me in despair. He was 60 pounds overweight, diagnosed with Type II diabetes, aching joints, depressed, chronic fatigue, weak and a plethora of other health problems. I asked him for an honest weekly food log. It was one of the worst disease producing diets I had ever seen. Also, after walking the 18 steps up to my office he was winded and had to sit down to catch his breath. I asked what he was willing to do to get out of the deplorable condition he was in and journey to good health? He answered “whatever you tell me to do”. I’ve heard it before!

I told him we would first go to his house and toss every last bit of health robbing food in his kitchen, under his bed and in his car. Then we would go to the grocery store and stock up on the items that would immediately begin to heal his body. He agreed and it was done.

I put him on a sensible, progressive exercise program. Three times a week he had to report to me his food intake and exercise log. I gave him recipes and set him up with a support group which he utilized with enthusiasm. I watched this man lose the 60 pounds of fat, add 10 pounds of muscle, lose his diabetes, gain a happy, positive attitude, lose his pasty color for a healthy glow, gain super energy and become an inspiration to others. I was and am elated. He has since moved away but still (after five years) sends me his food log and work out records. This is a person who wanted it bad enough – AND GOT IT.

Now, let me make this disclaimer: When I said successful clients did what I told them, I didn’t mean that you have to be dependent on me to achieve good health. There are so many great books and videos, etc. today that educate us on this topic that you should be able to get great health information easily.

Ok, with that said, let me give you some common sense. Doesn’t common sense tell you that you will function better and feel better and age better if you engage yourself in a sensible exercise program? Doesn’t common sense tell you that eating food that is un-natural to your nature, i.e., junk food, processed food, is going to harm you? Is it not common sense that eating fresh, unprocessed fruits, vegetables, nuts, etc. are going to be conducive to your vitality and good health?

The very fact that you are reading this tells me you are serious enough to embark on this great journey. By the way, there is no destination here, just the journey. It’s over when you draw your last breath, hopefully when you are 110 and have enjoyed a healthy, happy and robust life.

Principles of a Healthy Lifestyle

Let’s list some of the most important principles of living a healthy lifestyle. Think to yourself:

  1. How many of them are you adhering to?
  2. How many do you want to adhere to?
  3. What are the consequences of ignoring them?
  4. What are the benefits of adherence?

Sunlight: One of nature’s best of healing agents. The exposure of our skin to direct sunlight, unfiltered by the myriad of lotions and powders that are available, will help the body in producing vitamin D. In the United States of America, over 20,000 people die annually from lack of vitamin D and insufficient exposure to ultra-violet rays. Dr. Ward can test you for vitamin D and B12 deficiencies and help you with a plan to increase these levels on the clinical level.

Rest: All mammals require rest for their bodies to function normally and efficiently during the daytime. And sleep is an indispensable way of getting the rest that we need. Even God rested. The recommended number of hours of sleep is eight.

Exercise: Every muscle in our body requires exercise or it will go into disuse and then degenerate into uselessness. Similarly, the heart is also a muscle and it also requires exercise so that it can pump the blood around your body efficiently and exercise simulates the production of a chemical called serotonin. This serotonin makes you feel happier and less stressed.

Believe it or not, the best exercise for healthy living is walking. If there is anything that reduces blood sugar, it is walking. The benefits of walking can only be experienced if you practice it. Walking gives all around health. It is well known that exercise burns calories and burning calories makes you lose weight. For healthy living you have to lose a lot of calories. If you are overweight, exercise will help you achieve your ideal weight.

Nutrition: You are what you eat. Eat whole foods. What does “whole food” mean? Complete. It means the food has not been cooked, hasn’t been processed, and hasn’t had stuff added to it — artificial sweeteners, colors and hydrogenated oil.

An apple is a whole food. Whole food is complete and has everything your body needs. Eat as fresh as you can, as much as you can! Eat at least 60% fresh fruits, salads, and vegetables. If you really want to lead a healthy lifestyle, eat at least 80 % fresh fruits, nuts and vegetables.

Water: That water is essential to life can be seen by the simple fact that the human body is about 60% water in males and 55% in females. Lean muscle tissue contains 75% water by weight; blood 95%; body fat 14% and even bone contains 22% water. Every day we lose about 2.5 liters of water which must be replenished to prevent dehydration. The Reference Daily Intake (RDI) of water for an adult male is 3.70 liters and that for a female is 2.70 liters, Water acts as a solvent, a temperature regulator, a lubricant and a means of transportation in the body.

Temperance: This applies to all factors in our daily lives: work, sleep, food etc. Abstinence can be defined as “the act and practice of refraining.” Apply this to all factors that affect our health. Temperance in diet is rewarded with mental, physical and moral vigor. It also aids in the control of our passions. We must always be in control of our bodies and not the reverse.

Relationships: I believe if you have been doing all the above, you will be satisfied and healthy. You will figure out how to process your relationships. Focus on your relationships and do what you can to improve them.

Passion: Have passion in your life and share that passion with other people. Get out there. I think you know what I am passionate about. I’m passionate about sharing this information with the world.

Let’s Get Healthy Together

So make some small modifications, and you are really going to have a healthier lifestyle. You’re going to feel fantastic.

Ok now, really, how bad do you want it?

Back to the main Let’s Get Healthy Together page.