Today’s message won’t be like my usual notes full of weight loss tips and nutritional tidbits. Today, I hope to share some feelings and observations that have been welling up inside of me, that I believe you have probably felt in your life at some point, too. Life has an uncanny way of continually asking us to change our perspectives. We observe the world through different lenses as we age.
I am writing this today as a 31 year old male. This fall my dad and mom will turn 61 and 66 respectively. This summer I had the blessing and privilege of spending a week with my parents and other family members in the mountains of Colorado. It was an awesome time full of fun, many deep conversations, and much bonding. For those of you who have great relationships with your parents, you likely look up to them, seek their wisdom and knowledge and look to them for guidance and strength.
That will never change.
As kids, we also looked up to our parents as our physical protectors. We believed that they would be there to keep us safe if anything went wrong and that nothing could ever harm our protectors. But there comes a time in all of our lives when we become adults and our parents somehow become the same age our grandparents were in our earliest childhood memories.
My grandma (who was one of the best influences on my life), I viewed as a fragile woman who was physically slow, but loved more than almost anyone I have ever met. We developed a very close, nearly inseparable bond. Which leads me to the realization I want to share with you today that has really hit me lately…
My parents aren’t as strong, fit or quick, as they once were and they are heading towards the same “fragile” state my Grandma faced late in her life. It is a hard pill to swallow, but part of the aging process we must all deal with. I am very fortunate, all things considered, my parents are in FAR better shape and health than probably 80-90% of people their age, but they are not really close to the physical state they were in my teenage memories of them.
So why am I sharing this personal dialogue with you, and my own parents who read every letter I write?
Like I mentioned, lately it has really hit me that my parents are aging. I want them to as healthy and fit as they can be for as long as possible. I want them to be there when I get married and have my first child. I want them to have energy to play actively with their grand-kids. I want them to be able to travel the world and spend quality time together, just the two of them. I want them to enjoy the quality of life they deserve after all the MILLIONS of sacrifices they have made for me and my 3 younger siblings over the years.
Okay, let me bring this sharing in for a landing and explain what these realizations has done for me and how all this might affect you…
Last week our Fit Moms For Life team met and discussed what we wanted to focus on for the remainder of 2014 and beyond. We always try to base our decisions on our company’s mission and core values. It became clear that creating a program that would serve my parent’s age group so clearly fit in line with FM4L core values and mission, that if we didn’t offer this program, we would actually be doing a disservice to our community.
Let me explain…
Creating healthy, fit families is one of our top core values. Let’s say I am working with a mom who has two little kids. She is doing her best to change the family’s eating habits and working at having the kids spend less time on the iPad and more time running around actively playing. This mom takes the kids to the grandparent’s house for a week during the summer. At the grandparents, eating healthy and being active is NOT the norm, and so everything the mom is trying to teach her kids is being counteracted at the grandparents’. The grandparents love their grand-kids, of course, but they only know how to feed them processed junk, and they are in such poor health themselves that playing with the kids outside is just out of the question, so most of their grand-kids’ time is spent in front of some screen.
This whole scenario can go the other way around too, though…
We could have a man or woman in their late 50’s who are making strides to improve their health. They are reducing the amount of processed food they are eating and making positive, active changes in their lives. Their grown children and young grand-kids, though, are not on the same journey of healthy living and are instead living the typical western lifestyle. Their children’s family is getting overweight, sick, and tired. The grandparents are trying to live a healthier lifestyle and be a good influence in their family’s lives, but the habits and priorities of their own kids and grand-kids are not making the job easy. It hurts the grandparents to see this happening to their family.
Our team at Fit Moms For Life wants to support both generations live healthy lives and give them each specific tools to use to improve their health. The success formula is the same for both generations, there will just be different ways to execute the formula based on age, abilities, goals, and lifestyle.
This week we launched Fit and Fabulous over 55. It is our first big scale, focused program designed to serve men and women who are in their 50’s and beyond. It is our FM4L team’s hope that moms who are in their 20’s, 30’s, and 40’s will encourage and inspire their parents to make some changes that will radically change their entire family’s lives for the better. Our team also hopes that as men and women in their 50’s and beyond start to make healthy changes, their grown kids will begin to take notice and be inspired to start their own journey which will then have massive, positive change in their grand-kids’ lives as well.
A couple years back, I created a few total body workouts for the 50 plus crowd called Boomin Bodies. They are awesome and have transformed so many lives and I recommend them to anyone who can’t make it to Madison to train with the Fit Moms For Life team in person.
The Fit and Fabulous over 55 private small group training program will only be offered in Madison, WI right now, but as we continue to tweak and develop this program, I hope to be able to launch a similar program online, that can be a life-changer for you and your parents, wherever you live.
If you have made it to the end of this, thank you for reading and listening to this outpouring of emotion. If you are in my situation and are watching your parents age, I encourage you to reach out your parents, tell them how much you love them and express how much you want and need them to be around for many more decades. If you are closer to my parent’s age, I hope that this has inspired you to take a look at your life and realize that you have so many more awesome decades to experience life and to mentor and help the younger generation. Reach out to your kids and let them know how much you love them and look forward to being around for them for many more decades to come.