Special to the Tribune-Star
TERRE HAUTE —
When was the last time you solved a problem by sitting in front of the television?
As the general discussion goes, we are a fat nation because of technology. Technology has allowed us, as a nation, to become soft and disease-ridden. Computers, iPads, cell phones and email have made us more productive, but the cost on our health has been devastating.
Technology has made our lives easier, and that luxury is killing us. There are more ways to consume our free time and occupy our minds than ever before. The problem is few are productive and most do not require any thought or physical effort.
The one variable that remains constant and has no substitute or technological equivalent is exercise. Going to a gym is a great way to de-stress, lose weight, sweat and feel good. The beauty of the gym is there are plenty of diversions to distract you from thinking about what you are doing. Therefore the gym fulfills the exercise and social need in our lives. What may be missing is the silence that allows you to think and be creative.
Bear with me as I take you into uncomfortable territory. What would happen if you ventured outdoors and left the electronic gadgets behind? Could you function without an iPod, heart rate monitor or cell phone? A chilling thought, huh? Imagine the silence and what your mind will conjure up once you get past the anxiety of not being tethered to your gadgets. The increased blood flow to your organs and muscle will perfuse the brain and you’ll notice something you have not experienced in a while: thoughts and ideas infused with creativity.
Now, imagine the SUV owner who never goes off-road. Same is true for the gym dweller who loves to exercise but can’t step foot outdoors or on a trail because there is no technological safety net or air conditioning. We get stuck in a routine because we like habits and don’t like change.
Consistent exercise, regardless of where and when you do it, will help you reduce disease risk, lose weight and feel better. Consistent exercise away from all the technological distractions will accomplish the same things as gym training and maybe more.
When was the last time you experienced real quiet time? I mean no distractions. The only noise you may experience, besides your footsteps and breathing, are birds chirping, a stream flowing, the wind whispering through the trees, or an occasional airplane flying overhead. Combine those natural sounds with sunshine on your face and fresh air and you may find solutions to most of your problems.
You hold the solution to most challenges that face your life. Overcoming challenges requires a combination that is available to you if you know where to look. Escape the noise and go in silence to reveal what has been eluding you for so long. Peace.
Chris Davies, MS, owns Fitness Solutions Inc. He can be reached at