New Year, New You, right?
This is the arbitrary time of the year when most of us will make resolutions of one kind or another. Even if we don’t say it out loud.
This is the time of the year that is like manna from Heaven for gyms and fitness clubs.
True, it is often the best of times to sign up, and you can get all sorts of great deals. But it is also the worst of times to sign up, because in all likelihood it will be a wishful waste of money.
By the way, there are other moments of the year when you can get equal, if not better, deals. Low times for gym attendance, like the summer months. But that’s not the point of this post.
My point, and it is a short one, is to suggest a different kind of resolution for the new year. One that is easy to keep, and doesn’t cost you anything. In fact, it may save you a whole lot of money.
The idea is simple: Apply a systematic filter to the advice you hear or read about fitness and health in 2015.
Let’s face it, we all want to be fit and have health for a long, active life. So we are prone to believe those who tell us we can get it, provided we eat this food, or take that supplement, or join this or adopt that. Especially if it means almost not effort on our part.
When it comes to health, we are gullible. And it pays off for many unscrupulous people. Entire business plans are built on that kind of gullibility.
To help you fight that, I’m proposing a kind of checklist that you should use to evaluate the advice you are being given. It is not meant to replace your instinctual willingness to believe, but rather as a sobering second thought. You’ll still need to do the rest of the considering on your own.
So, here are the verifications to make before accepting advice on health and fitness (and, truth be told, anything, really):
1) Is the person providing the advice profiting financially from the advice?
2) In particular, is that profiting financially revolving around the sale of products such as supplements or special items, as opposed to straight out guidance and support?
3) Does the advice include claims that are extraordinary?
4) Is the advice claimed to be something very few people know, or that some conspiracy would normally preclude from being widely known?
Most health-related advice on the web and in magazines these days get a check mark on all four. Steer clear!
Claims of requiring no effort, of guaranteed results, and such, qualify as extraordinary, by the way. For things like that, you need proof, and not just some “before and after” photos which are so easy to fake.
Getting two or more check marks, especially towards the bottom of the list, must trigger an alarm bell in your head. Yes, there are some evil folks on this planet, but there is no great conspiracy of the medical establishment against effective remedies. Otherwise my wife is still waiting for her membership card.
Getting only the first one checked may not be so bad, since there are legitimate service providers (like personal coaches) that are well-meaning. But beware especially of those that cause you to check #2 as well.
Remember that fitness comes from being more active, first and foremost, not from buying products. That’s my advice, and it’s a no-brainer.
For this advice, and any other you are bound to hear in 2015, use the checklist above.
Your wallet will thank you.
Pictures from Pixabay.