It might appear to many people that I am completely and totally obsessed with my health and fitness.
I workout six days a week, a majority of my social media posts are about fitness, I eat almost entirely organic, gluten free foods, I’m a certified personal trainer, and my favorite outfit is a pair of athletic shorts and a gym shirt. And in many conversations, the topic usually ends up falling on one of the above mentioned items.
The truth is, yes, I deeply care about my health and fitness. It consumes a great deal of my energy and effort, as it is truly a part of my identity.
However, it is important to note that I did not decide to commit to being health and fit just to be healthy and fit.
The whole point of me starting my fitness journey was to live as long a life as possible to be there for my family. It would go against my original and ongoing inspiration if my dedication to my health and fitness came before the time I spend with my family.
And that is why it is so important that as a fit dad, I must guard myself against pushing past the point of dedication into obsession.
There have been many times over the past five years that I have felt myself getting close to being unhealthily consumed by my attention to my physical health. Whether it be obsessing over a missed workout or denying myself food because it isn’t healthy enough, if left unattended, these thoughts can turn into actions that damage those relationships that are most important.
You must be intentional about not becoming obsessed.
It’s crazy to even write that, as many people, especially when they are just starting out, struggle to get into a routine with their fitness. But believe me, there comes a point where the struggle dissipates and habits take over.
My family and I recently took a vacation to San Diego, and I made a commitment to myself that during those five days, I would not think about the workouts I missed, I would not think about how the food I was consuming was unhealthy, and I would not waste a second thinking about “catching up” in the gym the following week.
And it was worth it.
I had an incredible time with my family, I ate amazing food and drank some amazing drinks without once thinking about macros, and I didn’t get the urge to workout once.
Mentally, my mind needed the break. And truth be told, so did my body. But I was only able to fully “turn off” because I consciously made the decision to do so.
I encourage you to constantly take stock of your priorities and how you are spending your time. If your health and fitness – or anything, really – is unhealthily becoming an obsession that takes you away from the most important things in life, get it in check.
The gym will still be there, even after five days spent lounging on the beach in San Diego.