It is easy right now to compromise our health and to rationalize poor decisions. Many patients have told me that their sleep schedule is wacked out, their diet is shot, and their workouts are not what they were. People try to fill the holes in their routines with substitutes, some good and other not-so-good. The goal in life is to consistently choose good things over “bad”, and sometimes it is just choosing less bad than bad.
I follow a health and fitness account on Instagram. They love posting “eat this, not that” type pictures. One side of the picture will be an image of a bowl of Cap’n Crunch with a slash through it, the other side a bowl of Cheerios with a banana cut up. The account is trying to help people find satisfying substitutions to help satisfy their cravings. Occasionally though, I think they have lost their minds. Today they posted a picture of a crossed out delicious Krispy Kreme original glazed donut next to a bowl of kale. No one in the history of forever has wanted a glazed donut and been satisfied with a bowl of gag food. Here is the thing, one or two glazed donuts are not going to make you fat, give you diabetes, or give you heart disease. But consistently choosing a glazed donut over a more nutritious breakfast will eventually hurt your body.
I miss my gym dearly and the home workouts are just not the same. I know that my wife misses me going to the gym too, she keeps commenting that the muscles that used to be around my chest and arms are now flab around my equator. After about six weeks of the shut down I realized that I had been stress-eating too much and my physique was showing it. Since then I have taken the time to try to walk or jog when I can, I have tried to choose healthier foods that are less calorically dense, and I have tried to drink more water. I did not notice changes right away, but after a few months they are evident (at least to me, my wife still points out my spare tire).
In the past few months, I have seen an obvious uptick in patients complains of new pains that they have never had before. In discussing things, we learn that a change in their routine has caused new habits, like sitting on the couch more, or working on a laptop instead of at their workstation. Using a laptop for five minutes on the couch is not going to cause any problems, but hours and days in a slumped over posture will certainly create issues. Pay attention to your posture during the day, and make sure that you are being good more than you are slouched, twisted, or slumped. And give us a call if you have already caused yourself aches, pains, or stiffness. We will help you get right and make it easier to starting doing more good.