For many, life is about routine and control. No one likes surprises and there is nothing worse than a curve ball being thrown at you when you least expect it. But life happens and every day we are faced with challenges which sometimes side track us from our normal routine and goals.
My question to you is what is your goal? Don’t get me wrong, but I am not talking about being rich, or an event such as a marathon. I am talking about something way bigger.
I travel a fair amount and meet people from all over the world. Most are lost when it comes to this goal, but many that I have met do see the bigger picture. There is a nice little expression which says may you live to one hundred and twenty. When I tell this to people the usual response is “no chance”. “I don’t want to live that long”.
However, then I came across someone who gave me a different version of this and he said to me may you live to one hundred like a twenty-year-old. That is, it! Absolutely spot on. The main goal we should all be aiming for in life is without a doubt health. Health is the true measure of quality of life.
Personally, I have seen first hand how the baby boomer generation lived their lives around a focus on enjoyment. Food, travel, smoke, alcohol and plenty more emotionally addictive habits. They lived it up nicely and I can look back and say yes many enjoyed plenty of the few years that life had to offer. But while all this was going on two massive industries were growing rapidly the one being fast moving consumer goods specifically unhealthy fast and convenient foods laden with everything to make you lick your lips. The second the health industry mainly pharmaceutical and medical technology expanding just as fast with big advances in medical treatments and new market drugs.
While all this was going on the baby boomer hit their middle ages thinking life is short just enjoy and look forward to those early retirement years but then something big happened. A trend of major health issues hit them so hard it was like a domino effect reaching far and wide to all corners of the globe. No matter who you were and what status you held there was absolutely no escaping the ill choices you made when you were younger. Lifestyle diseases such as diabetes, emphysema, coronary disease and many more started to take its toll and not just on the baby boomers but to many of their children who were just as exposed to these ill-chosen lifestyles.
I am a baby boomer child. I have witnessed so much illness from the generations before me. I witness their daily suffering and have over heard some of them begging for an end to it and an early death. I said to one such person it will never happen. The health care providers and pharmaceutical companies are going to keep you alive as long as they possibly can. They will make sure you live long no matter how bad your suffering. Doctor visits, hospital admissions, blood transfusions, endless medication and operations will become the norm. Why? Because this is where they make most of their money. Your suffering are the billions of dollars that enter their pockets. They will not let you go quickly or easy.
I personally am in two minds here. On one hand I am very angry with you as a generation. You took life for granted, you argued and debated you knew better. Every single bad health choice you made you justified with the biggest load of nonsense that even as a child I understood. You not only made the ridiculously health damaging choices for yourselves, but you were so selfish you exposed us all to your unhealthy lifestyles and infected many us in the process making your own children fall victim to illness and only because of your own selfish emotional desires.
However, on the other hand I do need to thank you. You opened my eyes and gave me the opportunity to decide a long time ago never to follow in your footsteps. I chose a different path. I have put health first and I will educate my children and the masses to take on the same road.
You all have a fork in the road of life which I hope you hit earlier rather than later but here is the shocking truth.
The fork to the left is the one following in the steps of the baby boomer generation and falling victim to health issues and illness early on in life. Allowing you to become another money-making figure for the pharmaceutical and health insurance companies and believe me they will extend your life and suffering for as long as possible to keep their revenues high. If you think you can get away with it then I wish you good luck. I promise you that neglecting it will allow you to live many miserable years of suffering on this planet.
Or, you can take the road to the right, choose health and a quality life. Nutrition, exercise, sleep and stress can all be managed if you make the conscious decision to prioritize and place it first above all else. You think it is hard, but if only you knew what was awaiting around the bend for you if you don’t. I have seen it first hand, don’t fall victim to the mistakes of the previous generation. After all, without health there is no hope, without hope there is nothing.
One hundred like a twenty-year-old, now that’s a goal!
All the best
Mark Wolff is a certified sports nutritionist and an endurance nutrition and physiology expert with over 20 years experience. An endurance multi-sport athlete with a triathlon, mountain biking and weight lifting background, he works extensively with professional and amateur athletes in a variety of sports disciplines as well as those just wanting to change their lifestyles. He firmly believes that a person can only reach their full potential when their health and nutrition is down packed. Mark’s focus on nutrition and physiology is not just on training and racing, but he places major emphasis on recovery, immune system health, emotional stability, stress management and performance. Mark is co-founder of 32Gi, a sports nutrition company, focused mainly on health and endurance nutrition.
A very honest article, written from the heart. It all really comes down to taking responsibility. Oddly, people seem to view the word ‘responsible’ as a negative. Punishment almost. Being responsible can be loads of fun. Choose to enjoy being fit and healthy. Finding what works for the individual. Getting creative with it
This is so true… Well Said!!!
Here’s to 100 like a 20-year-old…
I saw no fewer than four pharmaceutical marketers with their bags loaded with free samples and brochures in the patient waiting area of my doctors office today. They all seem to know each other.
Sounds correct 🙈
[…] age of fifty he or she has most likely not even hit half way yet. I wrote a previous blog called The Fork in the Road. (Click to read). You can play the games with your body when you are young but I can promise you […]