What Do You Desire Most In This World?
Is it buying a Maserati? Your dream house? Is it the pride you will feel walking your daughter down the aisle?
Is it retiring at 60, and seeing the world with the one you love?
Your Deepest Desire is Finally Yours
Whatever your deepest desire is, picture the moment you achieve that goal. You’ve worked toward this achievement all your life. You have sacrificed so much and worked so hard. You have put your heart and soul into it…
Finally! It’s yours.
You finally get to say to your high school teacher who said you wouldn’t amount to anything…
“Up yours Mr McLoughlin, I made it!!”
And then you have a heart attack.
You have your feet amputated because your diabetes is too far gone.
You’re in a wheelchair after a stroke which took the use of one whole side of your body.
Or any number of sucky diseases which are totally avoidable, but are killing or debilitating thousands of Australians each year.
How Good Is That Dream Looking Now?
Driving my Maserati seems way less cool with no feet!
My daughter wheeling me down the aisle is not how I pictured giving my daughter away.
Seeing the world through a hospital window doesn’t give me the warm fuzzies.
A Bit Harsh? Sorry, Not Sorry.
Am I being dramatic? Maybe.
Is this a reality for many Australians? Definitely.
Does it have to be? Hell no!
Why Are Obesity Rates Growing?
If I knew the ONE answer to that question, I’d be driving my Maserati and seeing the world with my wife and kids right now! (my kids are 2 years old, and 4 months old, so they won’t even be dating for at least 30 years, let alone getting married).
What I do know is that one of the biggest factors is that we do not prioritise our health enough.
Too Busy to Exercise
Too Busy to Make Healthy Food Choices
Too Busy to Take Time For My Mental Health
About 20 years ago, at my local GP, I saw a crumpled, black and white photocopy of a quote that has stuck with me for life:
So What is the Answer?
Ok, I keep going on about how bleak it is, and how we’re all doomed to have our dreams come crashing down. Enough of the negativity.
Do I have the solution?
Of course I do! Well, sort of. You’re beyond help, but your kids aren’t so let’s help the next generation.
Just kidding, you’re not beyond help – yet – but I believe our focus should be on helping ourselves in order to help our kids.
One of the most valuable things you can ever give your children is an appreciation of a healthy lifestyle.
If you can show your children that exercise is an essential part of existence – that it can be fun, empowering, build mental strength and clarity and that it is so important for success in all areas of life, you will instil a desire in your children to move.
This gift will make it easier for your kids to make friends, to excel at school, to get a job, to minimise so many of the stresses of growing up. Do you want your kids to have the best chance in life?
Of course you do.
Give Your Kids a Kickstart in Life
If you show your children that exercise is a chore, and only something to do so you can fit into your short-shorts at Summer time, they will (probably) end up on this vicious – and dangerous – cycle of poor health and fad-dieting.
So What Do We Do?
We Help Ourselves in Order to Help Our Kids
We lead by example.
We make our own health a priority, and we empower ourselves with a healthy lifestyle.
Our kids look up to us – and if they don’t, they should. Inspire them.
It Isn’t as Hard as You Might Think
The first step is admitting you need to change.
You need to truly believe that your health is a priority.
You must take the time to think about what is most important to you, and understand how that will only be possible if you have your health. And to have your health, you must make change.
Find Your “WHY”
Find your “WHY” – The true reason that your health is important to you. It’s not just about being healthy, it’s about what that health will allow you to experience – or in reality, what experiences will poor health rob you of?
Once you have admitted you need to make change, and you have found your “WHY” – it is now time to find something that inspires you. You don’t have to be a gym-junkie to be healthy. Run, surf, climb, hike, ride a bike, or find a super-supportive Group Fitness Program like The Shake UP.
Find something you can see yourself doing long-term. Something that will help bring about lasting change.
You are in this for the long-haul, and it isn’t only you who is affected by your willingness to accept that your health must take priority.
We MUST reverse this trend of growing obesity.
Not just for us, but for our kids and their kids.
It starts with you.
This article was inspired by our Shaker of the Month, Catherine Baker
Cat is a busy mother who is juggling a demanding job, study, and the thousands of roles that come with being a Mother and a Wife. Cat is committed to regaining her health & fitness and to setting a positive example for her gorgeous daughter, Georgia. Cat came into The Shake UP Community 9 months ago. It has been inspiring to see her grow from strength to strength.
In the interview below, Cat mentions a ‘mental shift’ – this mental shift was visible from the outside. I could almost pin-point the day it happened. She always gave it her all, but once her focus and attitude changed, her entire demeanour changed. It was obvious there was new-found focus and determination. This came from within, but it is a great example of the less obvious benefits of exercise – the mental toughness and clarity that is bred by pushing yourself and being pushed by the positive influences that you surround yourself with.Thank you so much for your commitment, your positivity and your energy.
The rewards are obvious, and you definitely deserve all the positivity that you have created for you and your family.
Congratulations Cat : )
Tell us a little bit about yourself…….
38 years old, I am marketing manager for a local property developer, I have a really busy desk job, I have a daughter who’s 6 (Georgia) and a husband (Lindsay) – so I have a very busy life! I am currently studying a diploma of social media marketing.
How long have you been with The Shake UP?
You’ve been a part of The Shake UP Community for 9 months, what was it that brought you here?
I was really aware that once I got over 35, the incidental exercise I was doing wasn’t keeping me fit enough. Over the years, before I had my daughter, I was always doing something – lots of different gyms, pilates and yoga. I guess once you become a mum, it goes out the window a little bit, and I realised my weight was going up, and my fitness was going down, and I just really wanted to snap myself out of that feeling of sluggishness that I was feeling all the time.
I was told about The Shake UP when my daughter was about 2 y/o, because Vicky was Georgia’s teacher – and then Nicole.
I decided to come and write a blog on you guys for work, and because I was interested to try it out myself, and I really loved it. I loved the people and the friendliness, the community feeling. The workouts were challenging but not too long.
Can you tell me one achievement that you are proud of to date:
I think the thing I’m most proud of is the change in my mental attitude towards it. I feel like I had a real breakthrough where when I first started, and probably for about the first 4 months, I was coming and about half way through, I’d be thinking to myself “Oh my god! I’ve got another 15 minutes of this, I don’t think I’m going to be able to handle it.” And each exercise I was flopping around feeling sorry for myself, and thinking I couldn’t do it. And then I decided, “Right, I’m going to stop being a big baby, and I’m just going to focus on each exercise as if it’s the only thing in the world. I really narrowed my focus. And then when the next exercise comes, just focus on that one. Stop thinking about the time, stop thinking about how long there was to go, how much we’d done, and that really changed it for me. I was able to get my form better and all of a sudden it’s finished because you’re not focussing on it anymore.
What is it that drives you to train?
I don’t ever want to be an unfit person. Exercise has always been a big part of my life. I want to set a really good example for my daughter. I want her to always have fitness in her life. It’s so important. I think health is the most important commodity we have. You can own a million things, but if you don’t have your health, you have nothing.
To make those changes, you have to push yourself pretty hard during the workouts, what is it that gets you through a workout?
Lately I’ve been trying to focus more on my form, and trying to notice how much better I might be at a burpee than when I started, or can I feel more muscle than I used to be able to feel. So I’m really internalising, and focussing. Trying to get that mind-muscle connection. But bigger picture than that, I know how much better I’m going to feel all day if I’ve gotten to a training session in the morning, so that gets me through as well.
So what is it that you like about The Shake UP? What keeps you coming back?
I love the music, I love the people. It’s so different from a gym. When you walk in, even if you go to a class, no-one talks to each other, everyone ignores each other, but at The Shake UP, people say hi, people chat. You get to know people. There’s a really supportive environment. People encourage each other. I think it comes from you and Ben. You guys act the way you want others to be in the group, you set the example, and everyone looks up to you guys, and everyone wants to be good, genuine people. You’ve surrounded yourselves with like-minded people, which is cool.
Can you tell us how the Shake UP has impacted your every day life?
Because I’ve been focussing on mind-muscle connection, I think it’s actually improved my posture. When I’m sitting at my desk, I’m trying to keep my core switched on, I’m trying to keep my back straight. I’m thinking about trying to move more in my everyday life. I’m more aware of more muscles than when I was kind of soft. My daughter thinks it’s really cool. The couple of times I’ve brought her here she’s like: “Oh mum, it’s so cool what you do.” And when I do a workout at home, she does it with me, and she’s started gymnastics. I just think that’s so cool that from such a young age that she’s going to have that. She wants to be just like me, so I think I’ve given her a love for moving her body. And I really worry having a daughter, because there’s this pressure to be slim as a woman and to meet this certain role model. I try to always say to her that someone can be this shape and they’re still fit and healthy. We can be all different shapes and sizes and you should never judge somebody by their body. I really don’t want her to feel that pressure.
Which exercise is your least favourite?
It used to be burpees, but I don’t mind them much anymore.
Probably triceps-dips. I feel like now there’s no workout where I think “Oh my god, I can’t do that!” Even running now, although it’s hard, I know I can do it.