Now that I’m at the ripe, old age of almost 29 (I’m kidding about the old part), and I have a 6 year old, I’m starting to feel like a grown-up. I’m starting to think in terms of “the rest of my life.” As in, I want to have a consistent eating style for the rest of my life.
One of the problems, I have with school is that it encourages kids and young adults not to think of the life they are living as Real Life.” Because let me tell you, if you are alive, this is REAL LIFE. This attitude of not taking their lives seriously or putting off changing bad habits until they are out of high school or college or grad school or when they are married or when they have kids, is extremely detrimental.
The habits that we establish as young adults can follow us for the rest of our lives. And studies suggest that the way we eat when we are children and teenagers can affect our health when we’re older.
What I wish I had understood when I was younger was that I was never going to be all grown up. There is never a point where your real life starts and what happened before doesn’t matter.
We need to start taking our lives seriously now, at whatever age we happen to be. Don’t put off growing or changing until you are out of school or the kids are older or out of the house. Establishing good habits of eating, exercise, learning, work and rest are important now.
The point is not that you are going to jump in and be an expert in Spanish in 90 days, because you won’t be. And if you don’t keep up with the language you will forget it. The idea is to establish regular, consistent patterns.
I have to keep reminding myself of this with my running. I want to be able to run a marathon NOW dammit. And I have to stop myself, and remember that I want to establish a habit that I can maintain for the rest of my life. Who cares if I can run 10 miles straight by next year??
If I remain steady at 2-4 miles a day for the rest of my life, that is much more beneficial than running like a maniac this year to get to marathon distances, and burning myself out and not exercising for months afterwards. Not that running a marathon next year would be an impossible goal, but I need to establish a good rapport with running first.
The same goes for diet. If I have about 10 pounds extra on my body, I could cut my calories and exercise more, but if I am eating an unsustainable portion amount and exercising more than I can maintain, then I will just gain all the weight back, and probably more. I need to slowly modify my diet to wean myself off processed goodies, and eat a diet that keeps me healthy. And create an exercise habit that I can maintain.
For our kids, we may need to remind them that they are living real life now. Especially teenagers. An older teenager would have been considered an adult at any point before the last 100 years or so. College used to be a place where you went to study hard for a reason. Now anyone can get in, and for many it’s mainly a place to party and be irresponsible.
We need to encourage our kids to develop consistent, healthful habits. And by encourage I don’t mean force, that can have the opposite effect.
Thanks for reading.
Breakfast: whole wheat homemade pancakes with water-sauteed apples on top with maple syrup
Lunch: small fruit salad of pineapple and bananas, and leftover carrot soup, and a pita (homemade, whole wheat)
Post-workout snack- 5 clementines
Dinner-Leftover curry (sooo good) with a pita, and I’ll probably have some pineapple for dessert maybe with some banana whip if I feel like making it
Workout-Ran with some walking for about 50 minutes, played some 2-on-2 basketball (which wasn’t much of a workout)