With his health declining, McFarland took control and turned his life around.
At 52, the author was what has become your Standard American Male–obese, sedentary, hypertensive and in deep denial–when his doctor reported that he was a prime candidate for type-two diabetes. The good news is that he decided to do something about it. In frank language, he discusses his renewal strategy and the routines and behaviors for rebuilding his physical and mental health, finding balance and peace in the process. First he had to own up to his rotten condition, his blubber and sloth, and become conversant with his body’s cardiovascular needs, his metabolism, what comprises a healthy diet and his need for physical activity. Thus began his education in cholesterol, stress, midlife depression, the body mass index, blood analysis, high blood sugar and a host of other subjects–all of which he manages to convey in clarity and modest depth, despite his lack of professional training. He endeavored to use common sense in his eating and exercise, gradually creating a life script comprised of the seven Fs: Fitness (he provides a detailed, gradual program), Finding what is important in your life, having Faith in what you believe (discovering some spiritual support), eating the right Foods, time with Family, Friendships and having Fun. He consistently stresses the elemental need for self-respect; without it, he says, you won’t have the will to embark on what amounts to a complete lifestyle change.
A helpful if arduous map for living a better life that certainly beats the alternative: giving up and dying.