Thursday, January 19, 2012

Peer pressure, or coincidence??

When we moved to Colorado about 4 1/2 years ago, we had been working as a family to try and be more healthy.  My wife and I have always struggled with our weight for all of our lives, and we had slowly been working towards trying to eat better, exercise etc.

Over the last year, we really made a concerted effort to truly understand how food impacts us, and to strive to eliminate processed foods, inflammatory foods, and to concentrate on whole organic foods whenever possible. During this time we both started exercising more, and I developed my Incline addiction, and a passion for trail running.

During the time we've been in Colorado, I began to notice something about the community here that I didn't catch right away.  What dawned on me was that whenever we were out and about shopping etc, the number of overweight people was really low.  Having always struggled with my weight, I know that I would often see other people and think "well, I'm not as heavy as that guy" etc.  I know that's not the right way to think, but it's human nature nonetheless.  Everywhere else I have lived, that was fairly easy to do, but not here.

So, that led me to wonder how much of this has had an impact on the changes we've made.  I know that the steps we took last year were just part of a longer progression that we had started before, but how much of that feeling of being the odd one out contributed to a push to accelerate our pursuit of improving our health?

Doing a little research, I discovered that Colorado is considered the fittest state, and the only state with an obesity rates being under 20%.  Of course, the state also offers great outdoor activities that support an active lifestyle, but so do a lot of other states.  Regardless, I guess I'm happy we live in such a healthy community!

Peer pressure or coincidence, either way I'll take any help I can get to continue the journey to better health and fitness.  And more importantly, transfer that healthy lifestyle on to our boys so that to them it's not a lifestyle change, but just "life".

Anyway.... food for thought I guess... (pun intended).   Interested to hear your thoughts on this, so please share!  Thanks.. and have a great week and weekend!

Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.  ~World Health Organization, 1948


Coy Martinez said...

Well, I'm the polar opposite. I live in Kentucky, one of the overweight states. I live close to a rural community and believe me when I say that I'm the exception. I get funny looks all the time with my wet pool hair, sneakers on with running shorts. I hate to say it but half of the women in the town where my kids go to school couldn't fit into running shorts. Needless to say Mountain Dew can be a common denominator. It's sad but I hope that it changes.

Barefoot_Chiropractor said...

Cool chart! I guess I had better whip Minnesota into shape. I guess we can all point our collective fingers at Mississippi and laugh. In seriousness, obesity relative to the fame of the state's barbeque seems to be at work here.

Jeff Gallup said...

Yeah Andrew... get with the program! I've taken care of CO.. ;-)

Jeff Gallup said...

Me too... but you are doing your part! Dang... Mountain Dew.. one of those things I do miss sometimes :-)

Stan said...

I wonder what the chart would look like for Canada...hmmm. I've visited Fort Collins once and I do have to say that it's a great place for outdoor activities.

Whether it's food or soda or video games, I really believe it all starts within us but what sparks the thing inside us is our parents.

My dad would always kick me out of the house so that I will go play outside or he would bring me to his soccer games and practices. That's all I knew growing up so to me, when I took up distance running, I never considered it a lifestyle change but rather a natural progression of my life.

Kudos to you and your wife for keeping active and transferring this to your boys.

pensive pumpkin said...

I've lived in some of the worst states, and now on the West Coast. this totally makes sense. When I go back to where I grew up, I practically starve myself as soon as we get home out of fear. It takes a while to get back to my normal.

Mamarunsbarefoot said...

I lived in Florida and I still was healthy.. it's just who I am regardless of where I live!

UltraRob said...

I've lived here all my life and it seems that we have plenty of overweight people here. Even though I'm active I fall into the heavy weight category. Most of the time I travel to places where people are also active but sometimes I go to places where people aren't active. When I do, it's a real eye opener as to how bad people's weight is some places.

joshua80033 said...

Where was that last picture taken?

Jeff Gallup said...

I don't know! but it looks amazing. This is back when I first started blogging and found pics online without looking for its origins in order to give credit.. best I can tell this came from "Lost in the Redwoods" 2010 on Flickr, but I was not able to find the original there yet..