By Paul R. Ross, U.S. Navy Bureau of Medicine and Surgery Public Affairs
I’m a typical man. I get a monthly manicure. I lather, rinse and repeat. I even cry every time Patrick Swayze hoists up Jennifer Grey at the end of “Dirty Dancing” … err … I mean “Road House” – when he beats up all those guys.
So maybe I’m not John Wayne. I may not even be John Stamos. My dad, who has more blue on his collar than in a clear day’s sky, says I have got writer’s hands – which is his way of letting me know that he still loves me even though I don’t know the difference between a claw hammer and ratchet set. I’m the guy whose wife gets sick and tired of sitting outside of dressing rooms as I parade around in my new skinny tie and plaid shirt combo, asking if these chinos make my thighs look big.
But regardless of the lack of calluses on my soft hands and despite my complete lack of knowledge of how to fell a tree or skin a deer, there’s still one aspect of my life that can be as manly as the bearded lumberjack who mocks me from my paper towel packaging – my health.
Throughout the month of June, Navy Medicine is celebrating Men’s Health Month by urging our male Sailors, Marines, civilians and family members to Get Healthy Like a Man. (And for our female population, we will be doing a similar campaign during October, which is Women’s Health Month).
Over the next 30 days we will be featuring health and fitness tips and guidance on Navy Medicine’s Facebook and Twitter pages as well as our Navy Medicine Live blog. We’ve enlisted the help of some of the enterprise’s finest experts to provide how we should be working out, what we should be fueling our bodies with, and how to maintain our overall physical and mental health.
To show that we are practicing what we preach, I will be adopting a completely healthy lifestyle throughout June. For your amusement education, I will be blogging about my experiences and challenges, but it will most likely be me complaining as I realize that Doritos Locos tacos aren’t part of my new diet. So even if you don’t want to Get Healthy Like a Man, you can tune in to our social media sites to find out how many miles it takes me to throw up my protein shake, or to see pictures of a grown man crying from side cramps while wearing designer gym shorts.
A large portion of our audience has to perform a yearly Physical Readiness Test (PRT) because they wear a uniform to work every day and fitness is a key to Navy readiness. Although I turned in my Air Force blues a few years ago, I will be put through the Navy PRT at the beginning and the end of the month to track my progress. During the hardest 30 days of my life June, I will be doing a variety of activities including a Marine Corps Martial Arts Program class, a military obstacle course, a wounded warrior yoga class, as well as working out regularly and eating right.
So, if you’ve been reluctant to get back to the gym or on a healthy eating plan, then Men’s Health Month is the perfect reason to get fit.
My male friends, it’s time. It’s time to put down the remote. It’s time to rise up from your couch cushion crevice and brush the tortilla chip crumbs from your shirt. It’s time to get healthy … like a man.