Awareness, Examples and Fun: My Gateway to Healthy Living

BlogHer Original Post

Fortunately, neither horror befell me. Instead, I learned what it meant to fly. As the cars lingered in traffic around me, I cruised with the sun on my back and wind in my hair. It took me less than 20 minutes to get to Venice. From Brentwood at that hour of the day, you'd be lucky to get there in 45 minutes in a car. I was free -- free in every conceivable way. I could go to the beach whenever I wanted no matter what day it was. Most people avoid the beach during holidays and weekends because of traffic, but that no longer applied. Traffic didn't apply. Gas didn't apply. Finding parking didn't apply. Paying for parking didn't apply.

Soon, I decided that I would ride to any meeting or errand I had that was under five or six miles. Riding had become more than a neurotransmitter fix -- it'd become a sort of real-life exploit where I got to access places in L.A. faster than anyone else could in their cars. I'm a nerd, so the idea of a real-life exploit was exciting enough to get me out of bed earlier, which simultaneously landed me in bed sooner.

And of course, all that riding made me somewhat sore -- and I hated how much effort it took to carry my bike down the apartment steps -- so out came the Wii Fit. Like a trail of dominoes, everything in my life fell into place one after the other. Without a single resolution, without self-doubt, fear or shame, my whole life had changed. And it all had to do with my environment, the stuff I was reading and working on and the people around me.

I find it interesting that over the years we've spoken so much about whether bad habits are contagious or not, but haven't deeply explored the more positive side of that equation.

I think knowing there are alternatives to the way we currently do things is important. There are tasty treats out there that aren't bad for you, for example. There are activities out there that are good for you that don't feel like a chore. It's not hard to imagine this, but we're social animals. Nothing beats seeing this right in front of us, true as the sky above. Maybe that's what's "wrong" with my neighbors. Maybe that's the appeal of workout blogs, Pinterest boards, and sites like DailyMile, where people chronicle their workouts the way foodies check-in and do on-the-go reviews for Yelp.

It all did start with Twitter in a way.

AV Flox is the section editor of Love & Sex and Health on BlogHer. You can connect with her on Twitter @avflox, Google Plus +AV Flox, or e-mail her directly at av.flox AT BlogHer

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