In her famous anthem, Aretha Franklin belts out, “R-E-S-P-E-C-T!!!”

My weight loss centered around W-A-L-K-I-N-G!!!

To walk, I require the clothes on my back, comfortable shoes, and a pedometer which I purchased for $25 from

Many people psyche themselves out of walking because it is so basic. Are you aware that you burn just as many calories walking as you do running? Novel concept, huh? Walking requires no membership application. Walking is great for those who wish to be alone. Walking is great a social activity. Walk fast. Walk slowly. Walk some in the morning. Walk instead of driving to the diner for lunch. Walk after dinner. Walk and listen to music. Walk and pray.

R-E-S-P-E-C-T W-A-L-K-I-N-G!!!

I really came to respect the power of walking in July 2012. I took my then fifteen year old daughter to lunch at her favorite BBQ restaurant twenty miles outside of Washington, DC. We both ordered our standard rack of ribs. She inhaled hers and then pointed out that I had only eaten half of my rack, and she was delighted that I gave the remainder. On the drive home, my stomach became volcanic. As we entered DC, I prepped her to jump out of the car and open the front door as soon as we hit the driveway. Not to be too graphic, but I had to race into the house and to the bathroom. My body violently purged my high fat, greasy meal. That was the second such episode in a four week period.

I share this story because that was the moment that I truly came to R-E-S-P-E-C-T the power of W-A-L-K-I-N-G. Simply walking had begun to tighten my abdominal muscles. It had made my digestive system far more sensitive to the types of food that my new body could and would tolerate. And, walking was changing my tastes in foods and my relationship to my meals.

I began to go to the nearby grocery store’s salad bar for lunch. I started keeping a piece of fruit and a bottle of water on my person. Since I had become fearful of having another violent bowel event, I stopped lusting for my former food fantasies, e.g. ribs, burgers, French fries, loaded pizzas, etc.

I suggest that you remember that your pounds took months and years to accumulate. R-E-S-P-E-C-T that it will take months and years to reshape your body. What are your excuses for not walking? It’s raining; carry an umbrella. It’s cold; put on a sweat shirt. It’s late at night; take your dog or a walking stick.

Consistency, not intensity!

God bless you,

Youthful Memories are the Enemy!!!

Youthful Memories are the Enemy!!!

Youthful memories bring back our nostalgic pasts.  Remember filling up the station wagon and driving across states to visit our grandparents?  Think back to how delicious the iced watermelons tasted in back yards on picnic tables during summers past?  Recall swinging on ropes and dropping into the local swimming hole back in the day?  Those are sweet, youthful memories which all of us should cherish.

For too many Americans, they get jobs, work long hours, suffer stresses, come home, eat and drink to salve their souls, deal with the kids, pay bills, take out the trash, and plop down onto their sofas in front of their high definition televisions to watch Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune.  After years of this, they wake up one morning and look in the mirror after showering to discover that they can’t wiggle into that outfit they’d planned to wear.  Then the holidays roll around, and they give themselves license to eat and drink with no limits because that’s the American way.  When January 1st arrives, everybody has the greatest intentions to hit the gym, train for a 10K run, and/or aggressively attack the latest and greatest diet.  True, right?

Why do so many adults’ fitness resolutions fail? They suffer from their youthful memories.

Most older adults remember playing outdoors all day long and never tiring when they were children.  They recall how they used to train hard or play sports with the best of them.  They flashback to how they had once been able to drink like a fish and then go play basketball or tennis all afternoon.

The problem is that our bodies change as we age.  We become less flexible.  We require more recovery time for doing seemingly less exercise.  Our muscles atrophy.  Our cardiovascular systems diminish, and we put on tons of fat.  Still, people join expensive gyms and work out with the same intensity like when they were still playing for their high school ball teams.

When I was about to commence my new workout program and lifestyle change, I spoke with a fellow West Point grad, Monroe H.  Monroe had lost over one hundred pounds, and he had run a marathon.  I asked him how he got started, and he simply replied, “I ran around the block.”

I suggest to all adults who’re embarking on their own weight loss and lifestyle changes to just fuggedabout it!  Forget that you were once the star cheerleader.  Flush from your memory banks that you were once a stud muffin athlete who pranced around campus in your letterman’s jacket.  Learn to just run around the block, and do it consistently.

Consistency, not intensity!  That should be your mantra to weight loss.

God bless you!  Now get moving!