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All In. The Non-Negotiables of a Fit and Healthy Life

Motivation is the intangible factor that links us to what we desire – money, health, muscles, or happiness.  So, I’m just going to wait here till I get the motivation, and the good news is, I’ll be here when the job guy comes to the door, and my soul mate shows up. You see where I’m going here? Our bodies are the machines we harness to get everything done, so why can’t we put the tuning, fueling and action of our bodies on the non-negotiable list? I will move for 30 minutes every day. I will drink 8 glasses of water, eat a plant rich diet, sleep 8 hours a night, banish sugar, processed foods, and stress. In caring for our bodies, protecting our children, running a business or a household, there are non-negotiables. How many days could you go without brushing your teeth or showering?  Would you drive without a seatbelt?  Willing to skip the daily medicine prescribed for a chronic condition?  You won’t. You can’t. We believe there will be a dire outcome to forgetting or refusing. So we accomplish the chosen tasks, without fail, day after day, motivated by the fear of what will happen if we don’t, or maybe we’ve just made these tasks intrinsic to survival.

I was brought up by Catholic parents to be duty-bound, and distinctly remember sensing a moral obligation to keep my word, finish my homework, do my chores, practice my flute. I don’t remember looking for or finding motivation, I just remember work and repetition. This is the key: we build motivation every day.  We don’t find it. If you want to know how to fit in fitness if you work outside the home, are a single parent and/or have limited childcare, this is the first step: realizing that your functioning body and healthy state of mind is a non-negotiable. It needs attention daily. You are the conduit to all of it. The next step is just doing one thing at a time until it becomes intrinsic.  This is what it looks like in my house: wake up, make a cup of organic, black coffee, roll out my exercise mat in the middle of the kitchen, turn on my computer and follow along to my chosen workout of the day. When my seven year old comes down early, he joins in or does his own thing. He sees that movement is part of my day, just like feeding him breakfast and buckling him into the car for school.  Am I motivated every morning? No. Are there interruptions and shifts? Yes, but the doing has become its own reward, and I don’t have to make a decision every day.  Work and repetition are my non-negotiables.  All in means all in every day and every way.

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