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Knowing vs. Knowing About

Let’s say that there are a thousand 89-year-old grandmothers out in the parking lot right now, and one of them is my mother. She is a little over five feet tall, has white hair, and is absolutely beautiful. Do you think you could go and pick out my mom? I know I could go out and within seconds give my mom a big hug and kiss because I know my mom. You only know about her, but I know her. There is a world of difference between just KNOWING ABOUT and really KNOWING something.

There's an old saying that goes something like this, “There are a hundred people who believe in honesty for every honest man.” Likewise you can say, “There are a hundred people who believe in, or know about, exercising for every person who exercises,” or “There are a hundred people who know about nutrition for every person who eats well.” That’s why there are a hundred people who want to be healthy for every healthy person.

Knowing about something is really a spectator sport. Knowing something is left to the participants.

I know about climbing Mt. Everest. I’ve seen it depicted in movies, on TV, and in National Geographic. But I’ve never set one foot on that mountain. I haven’t prepared for that altitude or that searing cold, nor do I even know what it would be like. Frankly, I have no desire to know these things first hand. When it comes to Mt. Everest I am content to remain a spectator.

I do know running a marathon. I know what it’s like to prepare day in and day out when you’re sore and dog-tired. I know blisters. I know what hitting the wall feels like. I know what every step of 26 miles takes. When it comes to running a marathon, I know.

One billion spectators just watched Olympic competitions with athletes who have been preparing for years, even decades for some. Does anyone really believe that sitting in the stands or lying on the couch while watching others perform is going to improve their personal situation? My Dad was a great athlete as a youth, but as he aged he gained weight and stopped exercising. I know it made him feel guilty. I watched him deal with the guilt by periodically buying a piece of exercise equipment. He never used these, but I think it made him feel less guilty, for a while. I got a lot of nice, free exercise equipment that way.

It reminds me of this: a man read that smoking causes cancer, and of course he didn’t want cancer, so he stopped reading. Why do we do what we do when we know what we know? Here’s an interesting exercise: stand near the check-out stand at your supermarket and watch what people have in their carts: there is a surprising amount of soda and Lucky Charms passing by the scanners, getting bagged, and making their way into people’s homes.

Does anyone really believe that eating Twinkies, Cheetos, hot dogs, French fries, Krispy Kremes, and washing them down with a Red Bull or a Rock Star is going to make them healthy? No! Then why is this exactly what so many of us do?

Habit. Bad habits are hard to break. I read of a certain chain smoker that was dying in the hospital from lung cancer and emphysema who literally wore a hole in his pajama breast pocket, reaching for the pack of cigarettes that wasn’t there. That is the habit he’d developed day in and day out for many years and he couldn’t stop himself even though he knew the pack wasn’t there and, of course, he knew it wasn’t good for him even if it had been there.

Break those habits earlier. You know what to do and can start developing the good habit of filling your shopping cart with nutritious, wholesome fruits and vegetables, and Sunwarrior Superfoods. Ask yourself this question and then start making changes today. Are you going to just KNOW ABOUT good health or are you going to KNOW good health?

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