Coach

Words of Wisdom from Coach Brian Kelly of Notre Dame

Coach Brian Kelly has a popular phrase: “You can’t start winning until you stop losing.” The first time I heard it, I instantly applied it to the way we approach health and healing.

You can’t start being healthy until you stop being sick. That means you can’t expect to get healthier when you’re thinking and behaving like a sick person.

Healthy people don’t camp out at McDonald’s. Healthy people don’t gorge themselves on pre-packaged, preservative-filled foods. Healthy people don’t mope around all day telling everyone how sick they are! Healthy people don’t hydrate themselves with coffee and Mountain Dew. Healthy people don’t avoid exercise. Healthy people don’t smoke cigarettes.

These are things that sick people do. They do it so much and so often that it becomes habitual. Living any other way seems foreign, if not impossible.

The result of doing what’s easy and the result of doing what’s hard are often quite opposite. It’s easy to sit on the couch, eat Super-Sized Extra Value Meals from McDonald’s, and chomp on Tums when your heartburn kicks in. Opening the medicine cabinet for Tylenol is easy when your head hurts. And let’s not forget how easy it is to gain weight.

Much more discipline is required to exercise daily, buy and prepare healthy meals, and avoid activities that stress your system.

Ask yourself this… which lifestyle offers a one-way ticket to the local nursing home (assuming you live that long), and which will help you stay active and healthy during your retirement?

It’s easy to think we can buy health in a bottle, but facing the fact that it just doesn’t happen that way is hard. I hope that in 2010 you can review your lifestyle and, if necessary, discipline yourself to replace the bad habits with good.