FED UP. is expanding, and I am proud to publish the first official post from a FED UP. reader – my dad…the one and only Mark “Marquis” Laurrie! I wanted to make this blog a forum for people to share their thoughts, success stories, struggles, and tips, so I asked my dad to write something he felt was important to know about living a healthy life. My dad is one of my biggest inspirations when it comes to healthy living. He has always struggled with his weight and has tried, succeeded, and failed at many different approaches to getting fit. That is, until a few years ago when he decided to make a radical and necessary change in his life for good. He lost over 80 pounds, adopted a workout regimen, and has never wavered from his new lifestyle. I couldn’t be more proud of him, and I’m thrilled to share his first FED UP. post with you!
The least known and probably most overlooked pillar of healthy living is actually the simplest to comprehend and one of the most fundamental aspects of life. It is frequently not even connected to physical well-being and sometimes elicits negative connotations.
Sleep and rest, however, are absolutely imperative to healthy living and need to be as planned and scheduled as your daily diet and exercise regimen. How many times have I said, ” I can’t take the day off; I will gain back all 82 pounds!” or, “I slept in and now I see fat rolls developing as I look in this mirror!” I just say, “Go! Go! Go! or its back to 282 gross pounds.” But nothing could be further from the truth. Living a healthy life isn’t solely about constantly being on the go; it’s about learning how to take care of your body – physically and mentally.
When you sleep and rest, there is less time to eat, opportunities for restored mental and physical energy, increased muscle recovery and – most importantly – an eagerness to a attack your next workout with renewed vigor. Slowing down mentally and physically in a planned and thoughtful manner by accepting the fact that life has to take its course is actually a learned skill. A day of rest and consistent nights of uninterrupted sleep should never result in a weight gain. That is tough for some of us to grasp, as ridiculous as that was to actually write. Why is it so difficult for so many of us? Probably because we want to be the best at everything we do.
Remember, the journey toward healthy living is preparation for a long and happy life. A day off, quiet time, and rest restores your body and often gives you the mental peace of mind that your body craves just as much as that extra scoop of whey protein or those intervals on the StairMaster. You just need to program your brain and alter your mindset in order to be effective, though.
Good nutrition and a well-planned fitness routine need the support of sleep and rest. There is nothing wrong with sleep; no, it will not make you fat and it most certainly does not mean that you are lazy. All of the time and energy it takes to prepare meals and work out will be much better spent if you are rested and rejuvenated every morning. So, hit snooze a few times if you need to. Then, wake up and be the best.