I started my journey towards an active lifestyle simply by taking a walk on my lunch break. At some point, over the time of adding more walking, progressing to work out videos and running, then joining the gym, etc. I've moved away from that walk. I recently read an article that said if you spend the majority of your time sedentary, like for instance, sitting at a desk for 8+ hours, you could be negating your workout. I don't know how much that is true, but I will say that it does make sense to get off my duff and do something on my lunch break. It only takes me about 10 minutes to eat, so I've got 20-50 minutes to do other things. So, I added back the walks. The walks aren't intense, I still maintain my workout program, it's just to move mid-day. I've also started grabbing my boss for these walks.
Today we had one of these walks. There was a woman that I didn't recognize sitting on our office's back patio. After watching us go around the parking lot a few times she said, "You guys are so dedicated walking on your break." That comment alone was a nice, ego boosting gesture, which anyone who's struggled losing weight, getting fit or just trying to be active in a sedentary society can appreciate. Unfortunately she followed that comment up with, "You should work some lunges in there." Hm, was that really necessary? I can understand why her observing two overweight women walking lead her to add that comment, but it was completely unnecessary and only negated her initial comment. She basically said, good thing you are doing something, too bad it's not enough.
Now, some of you may be reading this and agreeing with her. I'm not saying that the addition of lunges to our walks wouldn't have added benefits. They most certainly would. I could lunge everywhere I go for a year and I'd have legs and an ass of steel, not to mention I'd bring comic relief to those around me. What I don't agree with is someone watching me for less than 5 minutes and surmising that I need to add some lunges into my lunch break walk. Everyone starts somewhere, everyone works at their own pace and makes their own decisions. I decided this time around to become healthy and active. I acknowledged that it would take time and dedication to get to a healthy body weight. I accepted these things and decided to create a program that worked for me and was sustainable. This program has evolved, tweaked, had pitfalls, relapses and taken lots of turns, but I'm maintaining, progressing and happy with where I'm at.
My point here is, if you see someone making an effort towards a goal, ENCOURAGE them. Give positive reinforcement, even if you think you have a better way or you've progressed further along towards the same goal or never had to work towards that goal in the first place. No one needs your well meaning, unsolicited advice or poorly timed judgement.