Record. Week 1. Day 4.

Week 1 Day 4

Mistake Three: Not keeping records

Most of the business gurus seem to stress setting measurable goals. Without a measurable goal, how do you know if you’re on track at the end of the day?

The same principle applies to health. For example: if you resolve to eat less and exercise more, exactly how do you know if you’ve accomplished that goal at the end of the day? Beneath that simple goal, you find complicated questions: How much less do you need to eat? How much more do you need to exercise? What exercise should you do? If you miss a day of exercise or if you eat an extra piece of pizza, how do you compensate tomorrow to reach overall goals such as losing 20 pounds or breaking free of your hypertension medication?

Losing 20 pounds will be accomplished by behaving in a particular way for many days; so, the 20-pound goal will be accomplished more successfully in the people who set measurable daily goals. If we win or lose our lives in day-tight compartments, then it’s in the accomplishment of the daily goal that we achieve long term dreams.

Solution: Keep a simple daily record

The better the performance, the more likely you will find detailed records. Successful people in every area of life keep good records. The super coaches and athletes keep good records. Very healthy people often keep records. James Loehr tells (in his book, Stress for Success) how he coached Olympic and professional athletes to superior performance by asking them to keep records. He tells how to use similar records to improve your performance with work and with your health. I highly recommend his book to understand the power for records.

Is it artificial to keep records about your health?
Yes, I suppose so.
But, being trapped in a box (called house and office) instead of working outside is artificial.
Driving a box (called a car) instead of walking is artificial.
Having monstrous amounts of food available without doing any physical work is artificial.
It may take something artificial to counteract our modern environment.

Keeping a record of your accomplishment of daily goals which lead to long range goals does more than keep you honest with yourself. It also keeps you focused on what’s important. Just defining what you will track with your record can work magic.

It’s better to track healthful activities done and not unhealthy activities. By tracking the good things you do, the record will be more fun and you’ll be more likely to repeat the good activity. This goes back to using the good to replace the bad.

Also, a good record system to improve your health should take no more than five to ten minutes per day. For example: don’t record every calorie eaten–that’s not something you can do for the rest of your life. Instead record simple activities you can quickly track and which make a dramatic change in your life.

We’ll talk more tomorrow about how to make a health goal. So far we’ve mentioned these characteristics: day-tight goals, strive for something positive (not stopping something harmful), take baby steps, make it a measurable activity, and keep a daily record.

Read Genesis: Chapters 22-28 __
Walk 3 miles: Actual miles walked_____
Eat 5 fruits or vegetables_____
Virtue: Temperance-eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation_____

Best regards,

Charles Runels, MD
Books by Dr Runels<--


Jan 2. Crowd Out Harmful with Health-full

Crowd Out Harmful With Health-full

Around January 1, I see people try to begin or end a habit as part of a New Year’s resolution. Correctly thinking that habits greatly change their health, they use the first of the year as starting point for beginning new habits. I’ve noticed six things that successful habit changers do that the stuck do not do. You might consider these six things as you go about constructing resolutions for the year.

Neither the physical world nor the emotional and spiritual world tolerates a vacuum. Abruptly ending a habit forms a vacuum. Then the person eventually refills the vacuum–usually either by returning to the old habit or by adopting a new habit as destructive as the one abruptly ended.

For example: someone may abruptly stop smoking and then adopt more food to replace the cigarettes. Sometimes this leads to unwanted weight gain. Or the person may tolerate the vacuum left by the absence of smoking for a time, but eventually the vacuum becomes unbearable and they return to smoking.

Rather than resolving to abruptly end a bad habit, some will carefully plan and implement a good habit that they think might crowd the bad habit out of their life.

For example: Some will start chewing gum and think that this habit might replace smoking. Usually, chewing gum is not powerful enough to replace smoking, but the replacement tool can operate powerfully. A better choice might be walking. I’ve had no patient that developed the habit of walking three or more miles a day (six or seven days a week) who continued to smoke; it’s simply difficult to do both (you either quit walking or quit smoking).

When doctors prescribe Welbutrin, they use the replacement tool. The patient usually takes the medication for one or two weeks before they even attempt to quit the cigarettes. Usually, the medication will make the cigarettes less desirable and the patient will just quit smoking (as long as she continues the new Welbutrin habit).

Using this strategy (pushing out the harmful with the helpful) to change your life demands that you carefully chose the new habit. The new habit should be less harmful than the old one and it must be powerful enough in its effect to push away the old habit. The new habit should also be something that you can actually do for the rest of your life (else when you stop the new habit, the old one comes home again).

Tomorrow, we can think about mistake #two. Today we consider what habits do we really want to give up. What habits do you think you could begin that might crowd out the bad habits? It’s a good time to carefully consider such strategies. Consider making a list of harmful and helpful behaviors that you would like to begin or start.

Hopefully, scanning through this daily reminder will be a small habit that could keep you moving in a healthy direction and help crowd out harmful behaviors by redirecting focus

_Read Genesis: Chapters 8-14

_Walk 3 miles: actual miles walked

_Eat 5 fruits or vegetables

_Virtue: Temperance–eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation

Peace & Health,

Charles Runels, MD
Cellular Medicine Association

More about these "365 Health Strategies"