Fitness, Health And Wellness


I need someone to explain to me how when you know something is not good for your health, you continue to do it and do not even consider making changes. I am not talking about drug or alcohol addiction, because I comprehend the chemical pull that these two can have on the human body.  I think about this all the time, because I meet and know people who with a few changes in their daily nutritional habits could make a substantial change in their health. In my corporate professional path the term Pareto or Pareto 80/20 rule would always pop up.

DEFINITION of ‘Pareto Principle’

A principle, named after economist Vilfredo Pareto that specifies an unequal relationship between inputs and outputs. The principle states that, for many phenomena, 20% of invested input is responsible for 80% of the results obtained. Put another way, 80% of consequences stem from 20% of the causes. Also referred to as the “Pareto rule” or the “80/20 rule”.


This principle serves as a general reminder that the relationship between inputs and outputs is not balanced. For instance, the efforts of 20% of a corporation’s staff could drive 80% of the firm’s profits. In terms of personal time management, 80% of your work-related output could come from only 20% of your time at work. The Pareto Principle can be applied in a wide range of areas such as manufacturing, management and human resources. In Pareto’s case, he used the rule to explain how 80% of property in Italy was owned by 20% of the country’s population. (

You are asking yourself, what does this have to do with health and fitness? I can tell you a lot because at a minimum a 20% change in your habits and nutrition can be an 80% change in your health overall. In some cases a change in drinking water versus drinking sugary drinks could be a change in your health that is immeasurable. But, as I write this with all the information about obesity, descriptive and better food labeling and people all around us being challenged by high blood pressure and diabetes; some folks refuse to make healthy changes, even SMALL CHANGES.  I am learning as a certified personal trainer to meet clients where they are mentally, and use my knowledge not so much my personal experience. However, in the case of mental change I am the perfect candidate. Not so much because of the change aspect, but make the mental commitment to change. For over 30 years in some form or fashion I have been involved in fitness and health, but there was a 9-10 year window where I spiraled downward and neglected my health.  Through a series of circumstances I got back on track and not have look back. The circumstances

  1. Change of insurance and got a new doctor.
  2. Change of career
  3. Requiring my children to be active, meant I had to be in shape and active.
  4. I knew better and had the knowledge.
  5. My doctor told me if I did not change my lifestyle, I would die. My doctor had the information in his hand of what was going on inside my body. When I took a step back, I knew I had change! I change from a 32 waist to 38, and 195 lbs. to 245 lbs. Not Good.

It was #5 that got my attention, maybe this might be what I have to tell my family, friends and clients when I talk to them about their health. What you are risking if you do not change; it is not a slow death but an expedited possibly painful end for you and your family. Is it easy? Nope. Will getting in shape and eating better be uncomfortable? Yes.  But, these two are temporary compared to what you are risking by not eating healthier and being active. A simple philosophy to use is the 80/20 rule for your health.

The 80/20 Rule for health

The 80/20 rule is a key part of the clean eating lifestyle. While it would be ideal to eat the freshest foods all the time, no one has a perfect diet. Adopting the 80/20 rule gives you guidelines for how to eat your healthiest while leaving room to indulge on occasion.

  • 80 percent of the time: Eat healthy, nutrient-dense foods like fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
  • 20 percent of time: Eat the foods you enjoy that may not be good for your body—a drink with friends, a sweet treat, or your favorite takeout.

Following the 80/20 rule is a great way to establish habits for a healthier lifestyle. By allowing yourself to enjoy the foods you crave, you’re less likely to have major cravings that send you on an unhealthy eating binge.  ( )

No one lives forever, but while you are living at least try to be the best you can be if not for yourself, do it for your family and friends. The first step is a few small changes and then a few more and they get easier and you get better.

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