Tough Guy Book Club takes January off (who wants to talk books when you're busy breaking your New Years resolutions?) so February is our first meeting of the year. That means it's also our first challenge. For 2022 we decided to dust off an old classic: get your blood pressure checked. Go to your doctor or pharmacy or your mate who has a machine, get your numbers, whack them up on our Facebook group with the hashtag #bpcheck.
As challenges go, this should be one of the easier ones. But it's surprisingly difficult for a lot of guys. About half of all men have high blood pressure, but most don't bother to see a doctor, let alone do anything about it. Which doesn't make sense to us, because it's such a simple way to understand your health better, maybe even improve it. Because health is important, and so are you.
TGBC goons tend to be a little more aware than the average man, so a lot of our guys speak to their doctor regularly. But TGBC goons also are Average Men, so plenty of them don't speak to their doctor at all.
See, this is why we have challenges. Cos they're challenging.
The good news is, what we saw this year was a bunch of guys actually doing something about their health. For the goons who had healthy blood pressure it was just a big of reassurance, but a good chance to check in. For those who put up scary numbers, that's okay too! A #bpcheck can be a timely reminder that you need to start looking after yourself, because that's what goons do.
There's actually a lot you can do for your blood pressure. Boring stuff like diet changes, reducing your intake of salt, caffeine and alcohol... a subject upon which TGBC has made its feelings very clear elsewhere. Luckily, there are other things you can control in your life, like losing weight and getting regular exercise, that not only lower your blood pressure but improve your health more generally.
Making healthier choices can be hard, but it gets easier. And it's not just your blood pressure benefits. Losing weight gives you more energy and makes you more aerodynamic when chucking yourself down a slip & slide (see Camp Of The Sunburnt River). Exercise is fun and you can do it with your fellow goons. And if you take care of your health, you'll have more time to plonk down on the couch and read a book! Two birds with one stone!
This won't be the last you see of #bpcheck, so we'll see how everybody's numbers look next time. Until then, stay healthy.