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Fit for Life: Be Grateful

Saturday, December 01, 2018


Matt Espeut

I’m writing this note on Thanksgiving so by the time you read it, it will be a week later.

By now the warm fuzzy feeling of the holiday has worn off, so I want to see if I can help you carry it with you a little longer.

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday because you get to be around friends, family, enjoy good food, and not have to stress about buying obligatory gifts.

Although giving is the greatest feeling you can get, it’s better when you do it on your own terms and not be pressured by the outside distractions of purchasing retail items, fighting crowds, traffic, and crazy people shopping for deals.

I like Thanksgiving is because it forces you to put perspective on finding something thankful for. Something we forget once the holiday’s pass us bye. That’s why I feel that we should be thankful and try to give back throughout the year.

You might not realize it, but we actually have a lot of things to be thankful for. Some are so non-eventful that we tend to forget and overlook how fortunate we are. I want to challenge you to find something to express gratitude for every day and to practice seeing the good things that take place in our lives on a daily basis.

If you are reading this email, be thankful for two things. You have the ability to read, and you have the ability to see. Yes, these are common things, however, some people don’t get to experience them. Again, it’s the simple things in life that we take for granted without realizing how lucky we are.

Do you have family and friends that care about you? If you do, you should give gratitude for this, because there are many folks out there that live a lonely existence. Even if your family drives you crazy, and you don’t see eye to eye on many issues, you should be thankful to have them.

These are a couple of instances that you had nothing to do with that you should give gratitude and be thankful for, however, there are several things that you can control, and do to make your own life better as well as someone else.

How’s your health? Well if its good, you should be grateful for that, because in today’s day and age good health isn’t necessarily common. With all the diseases and sickness caused by living an unfavorable lifestyle, being fit and healthy is something to give gratitude for. If you are not in great health, you have ability to make it happen. There are many resources out there that are within reach, so you should be grateful for the opportunities available to us.

Speaking of opportunities, let’s all be thankful to live in the land of opportunity. Let’s give thanks to the soldiers and vets that are responsible for this great country. We have the ability to become as successful as we want to be. I know just because we are free, life isn’t easy, however it’s a lot easier than living in other areas of the world. You happen to be living in the greatest country in the world, go give gratitude and thanks for this.

Lastly, be grateful that you can create impact in someone else life.

Another season of high school football ended last Wednesday night before and, several of the kids came up, hugged me and thanked me for training them.

One kid however, came up and said, thank you coach, your words at practice meant a lot to me and I will carry them with me wherever I go. We hugged and looked at each other with a tear in our eyes, then went about our victory celebration.

To me that was one of the greatest feelings in the world that not only carried me through the holiday with gratitude, but still resonates with me daily. I actually reached someone and was able to have a positive influence on someone’s life. What a gift that was to me.

We try to do this on a daily basis, through Providence Fit Body Boot Camp.

I try to earn a living by changing lives for the better and creating impact in the community by helping people improve their health and wellness.

I am thankful that I have the most important job in the world, and a great team to help spread the mission.

Not only are we helping folks lose weight, but we are getting them off medication, improving their self-esteem, and making them feel good about themselves again. I am grateful for that ability, and grateful for the opportunity, and trust people put in our organization.

You have the ability to make someone smile every day, and that’s one of the most rewarding things you can do.

So, give some deep thought for something to be thankful for, and you will find that you won’t have to think very long.

We all have something in our lives that is good and rewarding, so figure out what that is and embellish in your thoughts.

Even holding the door, smiling and saying hello could make someone’s day so be thankful for that ability because I am.

With thanks and gratitude


Matt Espeut, GoLocal's Health & Lifestyle Contributor has been a personal trainer and health & fitnesss consultant for over 25 years. He is the owner of Fitness Profiles, a one on one, and small group personal training company, as well as Providence Fit Body Boot Camp, located at 1284 North Main St., on the Providence/Pawtucket line. You can reach Matt at (401) 453-3200; on Facebook at "Matt Espeut", and on Twitter at @MattEspeut. "We’re all in this life together – let’s make it a healthy one.


Related Slideshow: The 7 Best Health and Fitness Apps

Here is a list of some of the most obsession worthy health apps.

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MapMyRun is the number one selling running app for a reason:  it is easy to use, offers community support if you want it, and tracks and stores your exact routes for you.  If you are training for a race or a serious runner, users say that the extra perks in the upgraded paid version are well worth it. 

Made for iPhone, Android and Blackberry 

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MyFitnessPal seems to be the clear favorite amongst everyone polled.  It is helpful not only for the fitness tracking aspect, but everyone polled mentioned how much they loved the food/diet aspect as well. From carb counting for diabetics to recipe ideas to complement your fitness goals, users love this app. 

Made for iPhone and Android

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JeFit is another fitness app that has rave reviews.  It not only tracks progress for you, but offers a huge database of workouts.  While many apps offer community support, JeFit allows you to sync workouts with friends who use the app, offering a (real) virtual buddy system.

Made for iPhone and Android

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Strava gets the highest mark of all the cycling apps.  While it is also great for runners, the cyclers seem particularly inclined towards the fierce competition that can be ignited by this app.  You can track all of your rides via GPS, then you can compare your efforts to those logged by others in the community on the same stretch of road.  You can also join ongoing challenges that can net you great prizes (in addition to bragging rights). 

Made for iPhone and Android

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YogaStudio gets the top vote for Yoga apps.  It has a lengthy collection of full class-length videos available at your fingertips.  Unlike many other apps, this one also allows you to customize your own video yoga class.  All of the poses are done by qualified yoga instructors, and you can find classes suitable for all levels of yogis.

Made for iPhone only

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SimplyBeing meditation app offers the best of both worlds.  You can choose to run this app as a background for your meditation with soothing music or natural sounds that run for a set amount of time.  Conversely, for those of you who have trouble focusing during meditation, you can choose a soothing voice-guided meditation. 

Made for iPhone and Android

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Fooducate is an app all about educating people so that they make healthier food choices.  Although not perfect, this app is easy to use (you can even take pictures of bar codes to instantly find foods in their database).  It gives food a letter grade, tells you the pluses and minuses, and gives you better ranked alternatives.  You can also use it as a weight loss tool by tracking your daily calories. 

Made for iPhone and Android


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