I came to a realization today, more clear than it has ever been. My failure to really transition my diet the way I have desired is a lack of faith. Nothing more. Now I hardly have what one would call a bad diet. If you want to talk percentages, mine may be in the top five percent of the population at large, give or take, in terms of how healthy it is. But it’s not where I know it should be. And it is not a physical issue. Yes, there are physical cravings and the like. But I’ve found they’re never that severe. Nor is it mental, really. Yes, the mind plays tricks, and tells us what we want to hear, about everything, diet–especially–included. And there are what we may call “mental” cravings, and these can be more severe. But they’re certainly not insurmountable. There’s only one other key realm, and that’s spiritual. You could say emotional too, but I consider that an outgrowth of the mental. So what is the problem? It’s really so simple. It isn’t complicated at all. It’s spiritual–a lack of faith. How so? I’ve been wanting to base my diet on raw foods since the 80s–yes, the 80s! I know that dates me to no end, but there it is. I remember reading about Ann Wigmore, and her living foods diet. Ann first popularized the drinking of Wheatgrass juice for improved health. She was also a major advocate of sprouting seeds to unlock their nutrient content. Those ideas were pretty far out in the 80s, but now they’ve become chic. I was fascinated by this pioneer’s health findings. She seemed to be living her beliefs, with apparent amazing recovery once she dramatically changed her diet. I wanted to change my diet to one based on living, sprouted foods. But–to simplify the issue–I didn’t have the nerve. I didn’t have the faith to see it through. Now you may be reading this, saying to yourself, “Thank God you didn’t see it through, you’d end up looking like a cancer patient!” And perhaps you’d be right, but honestly, I don’t believe that. I realize now that faith is doing what you see you’re led to do, without looking to the right or to the left. Without having to inundate your mind with endless studies. Without having to watch endless YouTubes and hear endless discussions, and find just one more example of someone who is successfully living on raw, living foods.
Because it’s never enough. There is no amount of knowledge that can overcome a lack of faith.Do you have to know what you’re doing when you make a change like this? It certainly helps to “gird the loins.” And frankly, at this point I have enough knowledge to move much further down this road than I have. Understand, I’m not advocating that you do anything. And this article is not so much about raw food as it is about faith. Faith moves all things. I have been fortunate to be on the front end of many health and fitness trends, including raw foods, but also yoga, Pilates, kettlebells, barbells, and many of the trends that have become big over the years. But frankly, as far ahead of the curve as I was, I never seized any of these trends and capitalized on them in a big way. I’d be a lot richer man if I had! And I’ve been “passed up” by many with much less experience in these trends than myself. I’m not begrudging them. I’m complimenting them, really, for seeing a growing trend and riding the wave. So where does that leave me today? Merely in a position to feel more and more comfortable about being willing to step forward with faith alone. Recently, I have written an e-book about how I overcame weakness, illness, injury, and even surgery to be in better condition today at the age of 58 than I was in 20 years ago. I did this even though I’ve never written a book before. I read several books on how to do it, and just did it. Later I went through a new string of light injuries (I’ve spent my life overcoming them), and as a Certified Personal Trainer, also helping clients–particularly older clients–work through joint injuries. I began to think deeply about how to better help them. One night I went to bed wresting with the problem, and literally all night I continued to do so in various states of consciousness. It started working itself out, and by the early morning I was scribbling in my training notebook the idea that turned into my first video, Greek Yoga™. By the way, although the idea of Greek Yoga was created that night, it didn’t just come out of nowhere. I have been long been practicing a very personal form of body movement encompassing many disciplines I’ve picked up over the years. I should probably get into this further in a future post. It’s pretty fascinating how all the things I “stumbled into” along the way led me to what I know, and where I am today. The larger point I’m making is that these ventures I’ve started are a direct result of my being increasingly willing to step out on faith. Regarding the embracing of a raw foods-dominated diet, I have been inching forward a long time on this, but lately have really been watching the way that the wrong foods can have an extremely negative effect on me, and the opposite–the right foods–primarily living foods–can have an extremely powerful positive effect on me. And I notice one more thing–this morning: the wrong foods can cause mental dullness–and again, the opposite–they can cause mental sharpness. This may sound like a pretty obvious observation, as anyone can who’s eaten Thanksgiving dinner can attest! But it’s noticing the subtleties–that’s where I’m at now. I want the best physically-mentally too. And spiritually too–yes, spiritually. Eating live food causes the mind to light up! I’ve experienced it, oh yes, it’s real! I want to be at the top of my game. I have much I want to do, and to not be able to move at the right speed and in the right way just seems such a waste. I hope this post has been useful to you. Please let me know if it has. As always, I welcome your comments.
Patrick Rooney is the Founder of OldSchoolUs.com, a website that believes “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Its focus is Health, Success, and Freedom—yeah, in that order. Patrick is the author of GREEK PHYSIQUE: The Simple, Satisfying Way to Sculpt Your Body—Even if You’re Old, Weak, or Broken Down; and is also the creator of Greek Yoga™ and the Greek Yoga for Beginners video. To reach Patrick, email him at[email protected].