My wife and I make regular payments into our IRA and we invest money where we can. Like many of us, we’re always looking to save for our retirement. However, according to the latest research, 56% of Americans have less than $10,000 saved for retirement. That’s a pretty sad state of affairs. This statistic made me wonder how much effort people are putting into their health retirement or what I call your FRP or Fitness Retirement Plan.
Once you do retire, how will you live? What will your quality of life be? Will you enjoy those last 10, 20, or 50 years? Or will you be spending your time visiting doctors, dealing with disease, and fighting off all the typical ailments that come with aging? My plan is to continue to stay fit and enjoy every last day I have here on this beautiful earth.
One issue I see is that most people don’t feel the same way and the statistics are proving it. With the horrible state of health in our country, my bet is that most people haven’t thought about how they’re going to live in the last third of their lives. Your solution is simple: take care of yourself now and never stop making your well-being priority number one. After all, if you don’t have your health, all the money in the world isn’t going to bring you back or make you healthy. Just ask Steve Jobs.
The old adage is true, if you don’t use it, you loose it. It’s more true now than it’s ever been before. I’m here to tell you that if you plan on living long, staying healthy, and feeling amazing, you better start working on it now. I have had way too many clients who come to me in their late 40’s or 50’s saying, “I’ve beaten myself up for most of my life and now it’s time to put myself back together.”
I view my health the same way I view my financial retirement plan. I have to save a little everyday, or in this case, take care of myself everyday. We are all so lucky to have a life in the first place. I firmly believe we should take care of it as often as possible. To me, the simple plan begins with gratitude. I’m continually awe struck when I think of how many trillions of cells are working together to keep us going. Life really is a miracle.
Here are 6 steps to living a great, healthy, strong life:
Gratitude. Be grateful for waking up, a lot of people never get the opportunity.
Sleep well. At least 7-9 hours every night. This will keep you well rested and ready to be present for the rest of your life.
Eat right. Lay off the sugar, alcohol, too much caffeine, and any toxins. Eat mostly plant based, nutrient dense foods and healthy fats.
Exercise. Sometimes I get tired of hearing myself say this, but so many people continue to be inactive. I’ve taken it on as my mission to continue screaming the benefits of exercise from the mountaintops because it is so easy to make activity your lifestyle. 22 minutes each day is all you need. A brisk walk, HIIT, yoga, running, cycling, or anything, anywhere. This needs to be a non-negotiable in your life, otherwise you will pay for it in the end.
Give. There is nothing like helping others. I recently watched the CNN special We Will Rise with First Lady Michelle Obama. It was all about educating women. She said that making trips around the world and realizing how many girls still need education makes her realize how much work needs to be done. I feel the same about wellness. There is so much work that needs to be done and we can all help each other. Help someone else and you’ll also be helping yourself. Grab a friend and go for a hike or a walk. You won’t regret it, I promise.
Love. In so many forms, love really is the answer. A simple hug, kiss, or quality time can do the trick. If we begin to lead with love more often, not only our country, but maybe even our world will come together for the benefit of all it’s people. We are all humans.
God forbid, if something horrible happens and you die early. At least you felt strong and took advantage of the beauty and joy life has to offer instead of waiting until it’s too late. Now get out there, help some people and live your life to the fullest. I’m always here to help you on your journey: @teddymcdonald
Originally published at teddymcdonald.com