The Sixty Year Fitness Challenge

We won’t turn the tide in America’s fight with obesity until we give people of all ages the tools to manage their own health and fitness.

For all our advances in medical technology and understanding of how the human body works, we don’t seem to be getting any healthier. In fact, the first generation in American history with a shorter life expectancy than their parents has already been born. Lousy diet choices and a culture that demands sedentarism from cradle to grave have spawned a health crisis that costs us $147 billion annually and is the second leading preventable cause of death in the United States, and worldwide.

The answer to all of this, according to Ben Rollenhagen, is how we equip people from an early age to manage their own health and fitness. Ben’s job is to create future physical education instructors at Central Michigan University, and he believes that a move away from the current emphasis on sports and performance is crucial to creating a population that doesn’t require personal trainers, much less bariatric surgery.

Ben and Pete Hitzeman discuss the foundations of his lifelong fitness philosophy, how we can decide for ourselves how strong is strong enough, and the current threatened state of physical education in America. He unpacks the mindset behind many of the excuses people use not to get fit, and discusses the nature of the challenge we face in helping people overcome those excuses. He illustrates the danger of blind adherence to arbitrary performance benchmarks, and talks about how he’s working to save physical education through his work at the Specialized Foundation.

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