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Why Your Goal is About Your Health and Not Your Body

By Genevieve Cunningham

As Americans, or perhaps simply as a part of the human race, we often get caught up in appearance. When we hear someone talking about health and fitness, we immediately think of body image. We think of a lean body with strong muscles. We think of losing weight and lifting weights. But the truth is that health is so much more than the way that your body looks. If you've been thinking of improving your health, you have to think beyond what pant size you wear. If you're ready to set goals and make progress, take a look at why you should be focusing on health over body in your quest for fitness and a healthy life.

Because Body Image Doesn't Equal Health

While there is certainly some truth to body fat percentage and its connection to overall health, carrying around a little bit of extra weight does not mean that you are unhealthy. If you are struggling with obesity, then losing weight will definitely improve your health. But if you're carrying around a simple 5 or 10 pounds, it's possible that you're completely healthy. It's possible that your heart and your lungs are functioning perfectly well. It's possible that your blood pressure and blood sugar are within reasonable levels. Your body image does not always equal what's going on on the inside. If you want to use your appearance as motivation, that's fine. But do it in a healthy and smart way so that your insides and outsides are both improving.

Because Everyone is Completely Different

Sometimes we get caught up in a quest to look a very particular way. We find a celebrity or a fitness model, and we think that their body is the ultimate goal. But everyone's body is completely different. Everyone's body works in a different manner and loses weight or gains muscle at its own pace. If you get too caught up in looking like someone else, you won't be able to appreciate the changes that your own body is making. Instead of worrying over the appearance, take note of the more important things like lost inches, muscle definition, and the function of each of your body systems.

Because It's About How You Feel

The whole goal of better health is to make you feel better. If you don't feel good, then you have more progress to make. You could be at the perfect body weight, but still be suffering from blood sugar or blood pressure problems. You could look perfect from the outside, but have a serious lung condition or heart disease. Appearances are so deceiving. If you focus on how you feel instead of how you look, then you're much more likely to notice progress and also to improve your overall quality of life.

It's OK to want to look better in your clothing. It's OK to want to lose weight and improve the look of your muscles. But the appearance of your body shouldn't be your only goal. Make sure that you're focusing on the inside, on the things that really matter to your overall health and wellness. If you go about your fitness journey in the right way, then you can improve the things that matter and improve your appearance all at the same time.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Santa Monica, Calif.

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