The gym wasn’t as crowded this morning as I’d expected, yet I’m sure there will be a serious lack of machine availability, class spaces, and stretching mat real estate for at least the first couple of January weeks. Similarly, a whole lot of folks are lacing up shiny new sneaks to hit the pavement and jog away the blurry holiday memories of meals gone by. What if you were to lace up for Food on Foot (or a similar organization near you) in addition to your fitness resolutions?
Since 1996, Food on Foot has, with dedicated long-term and short-term volunteers, provided the poor and homeless of Los Angeles with nutritious meals, clothing, and assistance in transitioning into employment and housing. Every Sunday, food and clothing and food gift cards (for those recipients who choose the “Work for Food” program and pick up trash in the community) are distributed to hungry individuals and families. Volunteers can sign up and show up at the distribution point one Sunday, or on an ongoing basis—they are out in the neighborhood giving 52 weeks a year—so you can give of yourself at your own pace. When you go to help “FOF” you may find yourself in some pretty fine company…Neil Patrick Harris won Celebrity Jeopardy on behalf of the organization, Fergie and Josh Duhamel support and were just at the Christmas celebration, and other famous folk pitch in incognito. (In addition to volunteering, consider donating dollars or gently used clothing)
It can be tough, with the stress hangover from the holidays and all your commitments to yourself, to make commitments to others at the same time–but you won’t regret it. Even if you volunteer, for any worthy cause, just once, you build the world as a better place.
That is what 2013 is all about!