Don’t wait until it’s too late.

Know the “health” statistics.

Generally speaking, Get Momentum members are senior leaders and entrepreneurs. They are VERY successful people who are ready for the next level of coaching. They want to get to their next “there.”

Usually, within 6 months of working together, we get to another level in our conversation. Of the membership, more than 70% are all between 35 and 65 years old. (It’s who we usually work with.)

They know there’s a lot more time behind them, than out in front. You know I’m generally an optimistic guy, but look…if you’ve just turned 46 [you know who you are!] you’re about half-way done. Sure, you might “beat the odds.” But this week in Wichita, I reviewed the obit page and found that the average was less than 90 years old…

So, when I see it’s the 29th of February, I know it’s easy to think of it as a throw-away day.

Or, you could think of it as an extra day. So, how are you taking care of you? So that you can take care of others?

I’ll outline why I think there are FOUR reasons to include a “health and wellness” plan in with your personal (and professional) development plan. When you press “PAUSE” and reflect on WHY you’re studying your health habits, mindset, and results, you’ll find immediate benefit.

Here are four reasons to make the most of this month’s Get Momentum Leadership Academy Theme “The Wellness Advantage.”

1. Overall Health

It’s not just about joining a gym. Or changing your diet. Or buying new clothes. Or spending time with new people. Or…
It’s not about only one thing. Your overall health and fitness should be a priority. And, if it is going to be the priority (at least for the month of March) then you’ve got to develop full-body balance.

Balance does NOT mean everything is equal. Balance means everything is accounted for. Measure. It. All.
Start with the choices you make. Then go to the voices you hear. Then go to the results you achieve. Write things down, make checklists, and promise you’ll check in with the people who care most about you.

2. Weight Loss

The easy one to point fingers at, and the hard one to control. Weight loss is about a good many factors, this month we’ll address all three: Nutrition, Movement, and Rest. After you’ve met with a doctor/wellness professional, and have the clearance to start working on this stuff, work on your weight loss methods.

In January, here’s what I did:took alcohol out of my diet completely for a month;ate a minimum of 5 servings of fruit/vegetables a day;worked out a minimum of 75 minutes, more than 4 days each week;went to sleep when I was tired, and got up without an alarm clock.

It was a month-long reset…Oh, and I lost 7 pounds between December 23rd and January 31st.

3. Stress Relief

This month’s focus is on wellness, and that includes our minds and our hearts as well. Stress doesn’t just go away on it’s own. And, it doesn’t show up on it’s own, either. The BEST thing I (Jason) can do to identify my stress is to make a list of things that are “stressing me out.” Big, little. Personal, professional. Long term, short term. I’ve got to see it, so I can feel it. Make sense?

Again, check with your doc to make sure it’s ok to work out BEFORE reading the rest of this…studies have shown that intense workouts produce cortisol, “the stress hormones.” So, if you’re not in a place of wellness – mind, body and spirit – then suddenly starting a workout routine will just continue to weigh you down…and stress you out!

4. Socializing

Call someone and invite them out to for a walk. Sign up for a local 5K walk, and post it on Facebook. Do a google search for “hiking group” in the city you’re traveling to next. Stop by a running/outdoor store while you’re on a work trip. Bottom line: If you want to go far, and get better, go together.

Joining a group, signing up for an event, or even hosting an outing (think a group walk at lunch at work!) is a great way to meet and expand your circle of friends.

What Do the Pros Say?

Heather Kampf is a professional runner from Minneapolis, MN. At not even 30 years old, she’s won gold medals and even won three races in three days back in January, 2015: the Bermuda Invitational Mile, 10k, and Half Marathon.

This year, 2016, she won the mile race for the FOURTH time, finishing in less than 4 minutes and 43 seconds! She gives some advice here:

Go Long. Go Hard.

I found this comment she made, “Even while training for the mile, I do weekly long runs of 12 to 15 miles.”

For those of us who won’t ever run a competitive mile, here’s my thinking: “There are things you do in sprints (lead challenging meetings, have difficult conversations with your partner/spouse, handle incredible stress and overwhelm) and the long, hard work you do prepares you to be able to do all of that…better.

Go up. Go down.

Heather has talked about doing “plyometric drills” in an article I found in Runner’s World. I love this quote, “Besides giving me a stronger, more powerful stride, they reinforce good running form…”

Here’s our question, “What are the ‘drills’ you need to do, so that you’re ready to perform when it’s time?”

Go out. Stay out.

Heather has been quoted many times on staying out there a “little more” than what’s comfortable. If she’s consistently running 4:35, 4:45, 4:55 miles, why should she spend hours a week running? She says that she has a workout that “grinds on you like a race; you have to focus on trying harder just to keep the same pace.”

I happen to know MANY of you need to do this kind of mental AND physical training to be ready when the time comes.