When you think about popular Christmas gifts you might think of a piece of jewelry, maybe a new tech device, or even an experience with your spouse or family. Never in a million years would a weighted vest come to mind, am I right?
When our founder, Luke, opened a mysteriously heavy gift from his family on Christmas morning, he was shocked. Well, let me tell you why we both agreed this might be the most life-changing accessory you never knew you needed.
Listen. We all know what it’s like to carry around a little too much weight. And I’m not just talking about body weight, I’m talking about mental weight. The kind of weight that stops you dead in your tracks from completing the tasks on your to-do list and coerces you to “do them tomorrow”. The kind of weight that feels like a toxic ex or friend you’ve been meaning to ax from your favorites list but “there’s never a good time”. The kind of weight that you’ve been mentally hoarding in your brain that leads to debilitating stress and anxiety. That weight. It’s often worse than physical weight and can lead to even more problems down the road. But no matter how you slice it, extra weight never feels great. I’ll give you an example straight from Luke after he started proudly wearing his haute heavyweight accessory.
“My family bought me a weighted vest for Christmas. It’s amazing! Almost immediately I went for a run, hiked, walked, and worked out in it. I wear it for several hours daily to get extra exercise just by “living”, but wearing this 40-pound weighted vest around has messed with me. Man, that’s a lot of weight to lug around.”
Did you know that on average, roughly 40% of Americans in ANY age bracket are overweight, in fact, obese?
From wearing this weighted vest this past week; “My neck was jacked up. My lower back hurt. My attitude was off. My sleep wasn’t great. I had tension and migraine headaches from the extra stress on my body. It was a lot.”
Clearly, this vest looked great on paper, but in reality, it takes a lot of work to carry around that kind of excess poundage. It’s hard to prepare yourself for the kind of toll it can take, but once you experience it, you want it gone.
When I first heard Luke got this vest, I thought to myself – man, he’s so hardcore I wish I took my physical health that seriously! Little did I know the effects he’d share after only wearing it for a few short days. It really got me thinking about the kind of daily effects any amount of extra weight can have on your wellbeing.
I thought about my last year and how at the end of 2022 I knew I needed to make some major changes. I heard myself tell someone that I operated at about 70% last year, but the reality is that I was probably closer to 30 or 40%. There was so much weighing on me that I didn’t even realize, both mentally and physically. It wasn’t enough just to hire a personal trainer for 6 months only to drop off and go right back to the sub-par shape I swore I wouldn’t stay in. It wasn’t enough to talk to my therapist 4 times in the year and think I’d be able to operate at maximum mental capacity. It wasn’t enough to preach cutting back on alcohol only to have a brush with real potential harm right at the end of the year. I might not have been wearing a weighted vest, but man did I feel like I was carrying the weight of the world on my shoulders. The reel of the last 365 days went racing through my mind and I realized the pressure from it all felt insurmountable.
Luke’s experience with his weighted vest was exactly the kind of reminder I needed to kick me into high gear. It was just the wake-up call I needed and the reminder that I have the opportunity to immediately shed the extra pounds. I have the chance to take off the weighted vest of life and start with a lightness in my step that not everyone gets.
Ask yourself: Am I carrying too much weight? Are there things I can immediately shed to lighten my load and rid myself of the extra burdens that are limiting my full potential? Does this vest go with my outfit? Seriously though…I’m seizing the moment to take back my featherweight footsteps and challenge you to do the same, right now. Don’t wait, or the weight might keep piling on and you could find yourself staring at the icy black diamond run you just aren’t ready to face. Start making moves toward ridding yourself of daunting challenges living rent free in your mind and body. At Cadre we believe that wellness can’t wait, so I ask you…what are you waiting for?
Have an amazing year,
Director of Strategic Partnerships