I’m a Marine. I was on active duty from 1986-1997. Currently, I’m a soldier in the Texas Army National Guard. As such, I’m a member of many groups on Facebook that are filled with veterans. One thing that really gets me upset is the number of veterans who bitch, whine, moan, and complain about their health. They try to blame everything wrong with them on their military service. Now, bad knees, work-related injuries (a HMMWV tire falling on your knee and breaking it), and perhaps some inoculation-related illnesses are legitimate, however, blaming things like sleep apnea or being overweight are completely unrelated to military service, and in my opinion, incongruent with the discipline taught us in every branch of the service.
I was morbidly obese. I let myself go. It wasn’t until I became fed up with my weight, scared for my health, and learned from my cousin that it’s possible for me to lose weight without exercising for hours a day and without having to starve myself and eat bland food. Whole30 and Paleo changed my life. But the thing that allowed that change to happen was the motivation I had learned as a Marine. I learned to persevere, and I used that skill to get me through the hard times.
This blog is my attempt to help others learn to persevere, to motivate themselves, and to allow people to discover the discipline they have inside them to get healthy and lose weight. I feel that military folks have an edge in this area due to the training we’ve received, but it’s not something we have a monopoly on. Anyone can do this.
With that said, it is my hope that any military people reading this who find themselves obese or unfit find the motivation to get themselves back into being healthy and fit. Here is my message to the veterans:
Nobody else will do it for you. You need to pull yourself up and do this. You are capable of it. You’ve done more difficult things, through more difficult times, and often under more difficult conditions. This is a cake-walk for you. Stop feeling sorry for yourself, stop making excuses, and start Don’t put it off any longer: just start now. You don’t need to run miles and miles to lose weight; you only need to do that to get fit. To lose weight, you just need to learn to eat right, and you can do that at whole30.com, thepaleodiet.com, or just search for Whole30 or Paleo. Keto and IF are also worth looking into. Whatever you choose, stick with it and do it. Don’t give up! Never surrender! Don’t cheat, because you’re only cheating yourself. Besides, cheating is more like sabotage, and why would you sabotage your own progress?
Being obese isn’t something we become. It’s something we did. Being obese doesn’t have to be a part of life that just happens to us as we get older. It’s completely within your power to change this. You’ve changed your life before; perhaps it’s time to do it again.
Honestly, that message applies to non-veterans, too. I’m certain that at some point in everyone’s life, they’ve had to buckle down, do some hard work, and persevere to achieve something special or great. Taking over one’s health is within reach with some hard work, but it’s not impossible work.