Many of you are familiar with my basic Body & Soul core premises as to why we manage our bodies well:
Worship: How we treat our bodies is a spiritual decision and an act of worship. Romans 12:1
Leadership: It's not just about you. It is also about the people who love you, the journey you take them on and the life you model for them.
Stewardship: ALL the resources in our lives are a gift from God which we are temporarily managing; Finances, relationships, careers, opportunities etc....and our bodies. We are responsible to do the best with what we have been given. (Lots of proverbs and parables that exemplify this)
Another related idea is QUALITY of LIFE.
How you manage your body wisely, whether you neglect it or obsess over it can be filtered through this. Some folks do nothing and pay for it. Some folks do too much and pay for it in other ways.
Poor quality of life can look like:
You are too frequently sick and the sickness lasts longer than it should.
You are low on energy for the most basic tasks.
You have felt poorly for so long it has become normal. You don't even remember what it is like to feel "good."
You are easily injured by simple movement.
You are hauling around way too much weight and are suffering from, or definitely WILL suffer, all the maladies associated with obesity including diabetes, heart disease, joint degradation, proclivity towards certain kinds of cancer etc....
The way you view yourself in the mirror as well as the way you view your own character as it relates to your body.
The medical costs associated with this lifestyle. Medications, co pays, chiropractors, sometimes higher insurance costs etc...
Premature illness and even death. The unnecessary and premature grief we put our loved ones thru.
There is a lot more. But you get the idea.
Poor quality of life can also look like this:
Inordinate amounts of time spent working on your body and the time it takes you away from important relationships and priorities.
Too much money spent on unnecessary supplements, memberships, exotic foods. Plus all the lost time spent on this stuff.
Being miserable on a fitness model/body builder diet that will get you into single digit body fat because you want to...? Why?
The sometimes inherent vanity and self superiority that can come with obsessing on how you look.
The temptation to use illegal drugs to get just the right "look" because everyone else you see in media has done it.
It can become your god. Your whole self image can get tied up into how you look or perform. When something happens to compromise that, and it WILL, your whole sense of value gets thrown off.
Plus a whole lot more...
Our goal is be to live wisely and well. Our bodies are just one of the resources we have been temporarily given to manage in life. There is a law of diminishing returns on either end of the neglect/obsession spectrum. It is true that to make a major change in your health it will, for a time, require a disproportionate amount of energy. But, I believe there is a heathy middle ground that brings us a high quality of life and honors the God who gave it to us. Let's all be in pursuit of that.