Health, Fitness and the Whole Person

woman on a hiking trail at Elm Creek Park Reserve

I’ve been looking at the idea of the Whole Person for several decades now—ever since college.

I graduated from Oral Roberts University. Love it or hate it, I was greatly impacted by this excellent school. One of the concepts Oral Roberts built into the education at ORU was the idea of educating the Whole Person…not just the mind.

We’re Not Segmented People

Why is that important? Because we’re not segmented people. Health…fitness…wholeness…isn’t just about the mind, or the body, or the spirit or the emotions.

In fact, I think we all know we can be healthy in one area and very unhealthy in another area—with the result that we aren’t wholly healthy.

What I’m after in my own life and the life of my family is whole person health.

Maybe you are, too.

Going After Whole Person Health

It’s a big job to go after whole person health. It means we keep track of all the major areas of life. The areas of life that make the rest of life meaningful.

It means we pay attention to physical health: to what we eat, how and when we move, how much sleep we get.

It means we maintain enough control over our time so we’re not stressed by toxic schedules.

kayaker on a river at sunset, lighthouse and bridge in the background

It means we master our emotions instead of being mastered by them. Learning to respond to situations and people in healthy ways instead of reacting to them in reactive, emotional ways.

It means we use our minds to think deeply, widely and much.

It means we’re aware we have a spirit, too. I believe I’m not just physical matter. I believe there’s a real God who created us. (In fact, I happen to believe in the Christian God of the Bible. If you don’t, that’s ok. We can still get along!) Keeping my spirit strong and healthy adds to my whole person health, too.

So what does Twin Cities Outdoors have to do with Whole Person Health?

As it turns out, a lot!

That’s because regular outdoor activity—both alone and with others—is one of the healthiest things we can do for ourselves.

Both components to this—being active and being outdoors, especially being outdoors in a natural setting—have been proven to be very, very good for us!

Maybe you know that already and that’s why you’re here. Maybe you didn’t know that, and it’s a pleasant surprise. Either way, the facts are that being active and being outdoors positively affect so many different areas of our whole person health:

  • Boosts our immune system, which means our bodies are better able to fight diseases of all kinds…from cancers to diabetes to heart disease to the common cold. And yes, even to covid.
  • Boosts our emotions by helping us fight off depression and discouragement and helping us feel more confident, positive and creative.
  • Build our spirits by connecting us to the Creator of all this wonderful stuff.
  • Helps us think rightly. Are you seeing how this all works together? We’re integrated, complex beings. Healthy emotions and a healthy spirit help us think right thoughts. Thinking rightly in turn helps build healthy bodies, because every bodily system is connected to our brain.
  • Builds relationships with those we’re with by enforcing positive emotions, building memories and opening up communication.
  • If you’re a parent you have the wonderful privilege of showing your children how an active outdoor lifestyle helps them become whole people, too. Grandparents, that’s you, too!
2 women on a bike trail in the woods

Whole, Healthy People are Better…

Whole healthy people are better spouses, parents, children, siblings, friends, employees, bosses, neighbors and citizens.

We’re not claiming you’ll automatically become whole and healthy because of Twin Cities Outdoors. But we sure want to help you find local resources and give you ideas to help you work towards that yourself.

We’re surrounded by beautiful natural resources. We live in an area where local governments have done much to take care of those places by developing parks, trails, waterways and campgrounds for us to use.

Of course, our taxes pay for them—so these places are ours! And some local businesses and non-profits have done a lot to help make these places great, too.

Living as a whole, healthy person—mind, body, emotions and spirit—is a worthy goal.

We hope TCO will help you become that by showing you the local resources available to you.

three sisters in winter gear, including face masks; frozen waterfall in the background

Where to go from here: