One of the biggest blessings of my life was my father. He gave me a solid foundation, a stable home life, got me to church and got me through high school and college. He modeled decency, manhood and he showed me what hard work and what working together was all about. I knew he loved my mother and always showed her the utmost respect. Engaged in many activities, he was busy all the time but somehow through all of it he found time for me; cub scouts, boy scouts, little league, fishing, hunting… guy stuff. As a Mechanical Engineer, he had a high level job as Maintenance Superintendent of Mobil’s largest petrochemical refining facility’s in the country, and if that was not enough, he was on the School Board for an elected term during the tumultuous 1970’s desegregation of public schools in the south, and also served as the Police Commissioner of our local small town in Texas where I grew up. As a churchman, he was a Deacon, and served on the local church board. When it came time to relocate the Church, he led the campaign to build a new facility, which stands today. I saw my dad love; mentor, lead, pray, care for the elderly, tend to his family, work and enjoy his life. He was the best thing that happened to and for me, and for many for that matter, and as I age I see the value of his blessings on my life.
My dad also taught me an extremely valuable lesson about fitness, nutrition, and the journeys end. He had the high stress job; had the ever increasing “to do” list, was involved in many a good cause, but as with many, all of the “to do’s” edged out taking care of him. We both had local gym memberships back then. Heck he took me there, if I remember correctly, one of the very first times we ventured in to the “Nautilus” to check out what weight lifting was all about. Something I think, he thought, we could do together as father and son, and so began our journey, well sort of. As well intentioned as he was, as many are, the workouts for him over time became more social in nature, less “time under tension”, more time in the wet room and in chit chat kind of thing, eventually ending all together. Dad’s fitness lesson is about PREVENTION.
Nutrition and what we know about it, has come a considerable distance since then, and based on my genes, I have the same propensity to potbelly as he did, if I don’t work at it. Belly fat as we know now, is a killer of man and womankind. Less than 35 inches at the waist line for women and less than 40 for men is optimal. Dad, never got there and often joked about the “spare tire” he carried, grabbing at it, looking at me with that good old wonderment “dad smile”. As sad as it is to recollect, in his early 70’s, he had a series on mini strokes and a bit later an aneurism that in combination therewith, pretty much left him incapacitated for his last years. We know today that nutrition and exercise play major roles in cardio vascular and brain health. We also know the awful truth about belly fat. You should, as I do, know something about your gene pool, based on your parents and grandparents. Will you have their same fate? We don’t know. Prevention is actionable; waiting around wondering/fearing is not. Here’s what I am up against: Stroke, Dementia, Alcoholism, Emphysema, Cancer, Alzheimer’s, and Aneurism. Know what you are up against, as it can, and should be a great motivator. Know your numbers; blood pressure, cholesterol, triglycerides and waist girth. Most importantly get started in the prevention battle and stick with it. It is true as said: “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. If you need help getting started or just don’t know what to do, call us at Fitness Together, and we’ll do it for our dad’s. 619 794 0014