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Don’t Get Caught In This Trap!

Don’t Get Caught In This Trap!

Today, we live in a world that’s filled with deception. Many people are living fake lives on social media, the food industry are throwing around terms like Paleo and Organic to portray a fake image of health (btw, I eat organic but just because something is labeled organic doesn’t mean it’s healthy), pharmaceutical companies are pushing drugs as the answer to health, and bodybuilders and fitness models are portraying themselves as health experts. It’s actually quite sad, because people’s livelihood is at stake. Terminal illness is at an all-time high. This is crazy since billions of dollars are going to fund medical research. The problem is many people have the wrong perspective when looking at health. They don’t have a clue what health really is. Now we typically look at those who are overweight as unhealthy, and yes, that is a sign of an unhealthy individual. Unfortunately, there are many who are not overweight, some who are quite lean and muscular who are very unhealthy as well. We’ve all probably heard someone use this phrase “I can eat whatever I want and not gain weight”. Yes, some people are fortunate enough to eat whole pizzas and not gain a pound. However, this does not mean this person is healthy on the inside. I know this from personal experience and in this article, I will share my story of an eye-opening experience that changed the way I looked at my health.

After college, I had a strong desire to play professional football. I had an insane work ethic, too. Nobody would push themselves in the gym like I did. Many didn’t even want to work out with me because they said I was crazy. I was sitting at a solid 200 lbs of muscle with under 10% body fat. I was a lean and mean athletic freak (the pic is a throwback pic of me when I was 24 years old prior to a pro tryout). During this time though, I was at a dark time in my life. With getting very little interest from professional teams and in addition to not being able to find a job despite graduating from a really good university, I was down all the time. My mood was always grumpy, I complained a lot, blamed my circumstances on outside sources, it was a bad time in my life. Working out was my savior, it was the bright spot in my day that took my mind off my troubles. One day, I decided to get a physical and what I found out was very shocking. When the nurse checked my blood pressure my pressure was 180/110!! If you’re unfamiliar with blood pressure that’s extremely high. The doctors told me I would need to be on blood pressure medication for the rest of my life. I refused their suggestion of drugs and decided to take a deeper look at what may be causing my high blood pressure.

Initially, I couldn’t figure it out because here I was in great shape, muscular, by looks the poster child of health. Fortunately, after extensive research, I learned what was causing my high blood pressure. It was all these factors:

1) Stress – Like I said, this was a dark time in my life. I was broke, negative, and homeless (well, I lived in my mom’s basement). I had bill collectors harassing me on a daily basis and was being rejected by corporate America daily due to “lack of work experience” (I had just graduated). I was compounding this stress by training at the crazy level that I had been training at. I was so overtrained and not letting my body recover which was adding more stress that I certainly didn’t need. By the way, working out is great for stress, but like I said, I was working out 2 times a day, 6 days a week, killing myself each workout. Stress is wreaking havoc on people’s health daily and it was definitely affecting mine! I’ll speak more about this in future posts because it’s very important to understand and learn how to deal with it.

2) Inflammation – Again, I was a workout freak killing myself. My leg days were so hard, I literally struggled to get out of bed some days. I didn’t care though, I just pushed through. I also was eating foods that didn’t agree with me. Cheese was something I ate daily. I love cheese! I found out that dairy causes joint pain in many people. After cutting it out for a week I learned I fell into this category. My body was so inflamed it’s no wonder why I was always in pain and my blood pressure was so high. Like stress, inflammation is killing people and needs to be dealt with.

3) My Mental State – During this time in my life I was a very negative person. I had very little optimism, loved to complain, blamed others for my situation, and had little self-confidence in myself. After reading the book The Secret, I learned that this was why I was not getting positive results. After switching my words and thinking the first thing I realized is I started to feel better. It was amazing because I was still broke, jobless, and lived in my mom’s basement but I actually started to feel good. This taught me in order to have a healthy body you must have a healthy mind (this why most of my posts are on psychology and mindset). Now, more than ever, people in America need a mind shift because the negativity that’s going around is ruining people’s lives.

4) Diet – I touched on this a little bit with my reaction to dairy but overall I was not eating properly. I was broke so I really ate whatever my mom bought (which wasn’t the healthiest). As the popular phrase says, “you can’t out work a bad diet” and it’s so true. I may not have been overweight but I was unhealthy and had I not figured out what was going on, I would’ve been in some serious trouble. Fortunately for me, I started dating a woman who is very holistic and despite my current flaws, she stuck with me. She began cooking me gluten and dairy free meals from scratch. I began to drink herbal teas on a daily basis and supplement with the proper nutrients. This was life changing and I still eat this way to this day! I’m 31 now and feel better now than I did when I was in my early 20’s.

After addressing these issues I was able to get my health back in check and it’s been that way ever since. I’m glad I went through this experience because I’m now able to help others take control of their health. I’ll explain in more detail how to specifically address these issues in later posts. In the meantime, don’t be fooled with fake images of health. Focus on your lifestyle and assess what areas can you improve in. If you need help with these, reach out to us at Ingrained2train or email us at teami2t@ingrained2train.com

I hope you learned something from this article. If you know someone who has been struggling with their health please share this information with them by clicking the social media buttons below! Thanks for all your support!

James Carter

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