Dan doing Medicine ball, basketball, and BOSU ball plankWhen I talk to people about their fitness, often the most used excuse is “I don’t have access to a gym.”

We’ll folks, neither do I. Actually I lost over 45lbs and kept it of without the use of 1 piece of “gym” or membership. You see we all have access to an amazing fitness center. It’s conveniently located in my town, your town and there are some in every major city. They are absolutely free and it’s called “Earth.”

Now don’t get me wrong. There is a reason for gyms. For starters, it’s a healthier place to meet people if that is your sort of thing. Certainly much more heart healthy than sitting in a smokey bar and trying to use the next greatest line. However the last I checked though, gyms are not for comradery rather for working on your body to reduce stress, cholesterol, and unnecessary body fat; maybe even ad some muscle. They ~are~ a nice place to learn proper technique from a licensed trainer– if you can afford one. Now I am not bashing gyms or the people that work for them, however in this current economy I am no longer able to continually pay the trainer I had several years ago. I think I spent about $36 a month for the gym and about $1750 annually for a weekly thirty minute visit from a professional. I learned that I had no idea what I was doing, learned that there are dozens of wisdom on what is the ‘proper way’, and I learned that when I left the gym, I had no concept of dietary requirements because a licensed trainer is not allowed to tell me any of this. So I was pretty sure that the McDonald’s in the parking lot was not proper recovery from 10 minutes of squatting with an iron plate strapped to my back.

Then I learned about “In-Home Fitness.” I was apprehensive about the subject. How could I get in the best shape of my life by using mostly body weight, and a DVD player? We’ve seen this before. In the 50′s it was Jack LeLane, in the 80′s it was Jane Fonda, in the 90′s it was Abs of Steel; but the new millenia it was BeachBody. So I picked up a copy of P90X and was assigned a personal coach who happened to be a friend of a friend. This man spent the next 3 months with me (and my wife) motivating me and helping me with working out in my own home. I can’t tell you how invaluable this experience was. The investment was less than $130 and one year later, I am still using the same 13 DVDs and nutritional guide.

Dan doing Upward Dog with Yoga DVDOk, so I am not here to sell you P90X or any BeachBody programs. I am here to help you “just get it out of your head” about excuses. If you own a 4 foot square space somewhere on this planet, you can turn your health completely around. Spend that 30-40 minutes a day for yourself. You are getting older so your excuses are also getting older. If you think “nah, I am ok. I don’t need any help,” ok it’s not for you. Then get out of the house and sweat for 30 minutes a day. Ride a bike, but really push a workout. Go running, but really push yourself. Or even better, grab a cinder block and throw it around the neighborhood for 15 minutes. Do something. We were designed to do this. Nature did not give us the Megga-Mart to forage for our meats and produce; it gave us legs and arms to hunt and gather. Use them. I constantly remind myself of the famous words of Edward Stanley:

“Those who think they have no time for bodily exercise will sooner or later have to find time for illness”

I wish we could all be super heroes, but let’s face it. We are not.

Here is a video Monique and I shot demonstrating how to get outside and make Earth your gym. Hugs!

— Daniel Merk

POSTED BY Daniel Merk | 06:17pm 27th-Jan, 2010