I was doing some research for a meeting I was having the other day and found some interesting numbers. In 2014 there where over 2 million people that finished a half marathon. Just 5 years earlier there was a little over 1 million. In a 5 year span the half marathon has essentially doubled in size.
The half marathon isn’t the only distance that is seeing growth. It makes me excited to think that we may actually be on the verge of a health revolution in the United States. From the late 1970’s until the late 90’s obesity rates climbed dramatically among adults. From the late 90’s until around 2010 rates have stayed statistically pretty much the same. Some statistics show slight improvements in some categories since 2010. I really feel like all things are pointing toward a healthier population in the coming years.
We are raising our kids today to know the difference between eating whole grains and processed foods. Sure a Twinkie and whole wheat toast both have carbs, but that doesn’t mean they are the same nutritionally. Drinking sugary fruit drinks isn’t the same as eating fruit. Getting a second helping of vegetables isn’t a good thing if your vegetable is mashed potatoes. All of these things are good and can be enjoyed it just about keeping a healthy balance.
Little Debbie and I go way back. I don’t think it’s possible for me to cut her completely out of my life. The change I have had to make is the frequency at which we get together. That is the same for fried foods and salty snacks. I enjoy good food. Some really good food isn’t healthy so I just don’t enjoy those things very often.
Run Richmond is becoming more than what I had imagined it from the beginning. I am having opportunities put in front of me that I would have never dreamed of before Run Richmond. I don’t think it has anything to do with my vision or even me at all. I think Run Richmond is a success because of a change that is happening in society. The numbers show it’s true. There is some progress happening in obesity rates across the USA. People are becoming more active and paying attention to their bodies. Think about the looks you would have received if 5 years ago you walked up to a person and said
“How many steps have you taken today?”
Things are different now. No a large percentage of the population will look at their wrist and give you an answer. We have technology available to help motivate us. We can now see how inactive we really are at our desk jobs. That makes it easier to understand why it is so hard to lose 10 pounds. Increasing movement burns more calories. The more calories burned the more weight can be lost. It’s really pretty simple. At least the theory is simple. The hard part is finding the correct balance of calories in and calories burned. I think we are starting to get it though.
I may just be optimistic, but I hope many of you are too. Optimism just like pessimism is contagious. Start sharing the optimism you have for your future and others will jump on board with you and change their future. Run Richmond is a testament to that fact.