The leaner you are, the richer you’ll get

I am sure that this article by Thomas Kostigen of Market Watch, analyzing a recent study looking at the impact of fitness on productivity and wealth, will upset some people. However, it is any surprise that tall and fit men earn more than short and fat women? Taken directly from the study:

"All other things considered, taller people earn more than average, whereas obese people tend to earn less, although the adverse consequences of obesity are greater for women than for men. However, these findings could reflect biases linked to the social acceptability of body images rather than a direct link to productivity."

Thomas Kostigen of Market Watch also wrote:

Many studies show that better health increases both the number of hours worked and the probability an individual will be employed. … healthy people can put their money to work in other ways, namely to increase the quality of their lives. The healthy are, for instance, more apt to invest in their own education, thereby boosting their productivity. They are also more apt to save more in expectation of a longer life, thereby increasing the funds available for investment in the economy. This helps not only their prosperity, but also society.

So don’t be stupid: Get in shape to get rich.

I woke up this morning with the feeling that it was time to recommit to a structured fitness plan. Finding this article certainly reinforced that decision. I find maintenance to be hard, like walking a tightrope. It’s so very easy to fall off and slide into a path of weight gain. An extra 100 calories here and there coupled with a skipped workout or three will inevitably lead to weight gain rather than maintenance. Mel, who lost 1/3 of her prior body mass, writes beautifully of her struggle with maintenance. While many of her posts focus on adding good habits or new recipes, there are many true gems, like this one.

I have been avoiding the scale. We’ve had chocolate Halloween candy in the house. It’s been calling me. Yes, I’m allergic to dairy. Yes, it was foolish to succumb to the call. Yes, my skin rash is back from eating foods that I’m allergic to. Yes, I still ate 4 Hershey Nuggets yesterday. Today, however, I feel motivated and ready to get back on plan. Some of this is externally motivated. The in-laws are coming next month for my husband’s graduation from Law School. I know it’s shallow but I’d really rather fit well in my "skinny" pants when they are here. So this morning I braved the scale. It could be worse. 133.6 lbs; 22.4% body fat. I suspect some of the gain is hormonal water weight. I’ll have a better idea of where I really am next weekend.

Here’s what I’m thinking for the next month:

  • Fasted Cardio in AM: 30 to 60 minutes; 5 to 7 days a week; 2 or 3 of these will be HIIT
  • Weights in PM: 30 min max; one body part per day, might do abs 3x per week; 5 days a week
  • Nutrition: essentially Paleo with carbs (oats or yam) in post-workout meals. This will give me 4 protein + green veggie meals and 2 protein + fruit/veggie + starchy carb meals. For me, this will definitely be a caloric deficit situation. I haven’t plugged my nutrition into excel recently but I estimate that I’m eating about 2300 calories a day and essentially maintaining.
  • 1 free meal per week. I already know what I want. PF Chang’s has spun out a take-out/dine in restaurant Pei Wei. I will be splurging on brown rice & Pei Wei Spicy Shrimp.
Posted in Fitness, Personal Development