Motivations come and go, but true commitment never ends. A leading authority on health and wellness, Seamus Mullen is also an award-winning chef, restaurateur, and author. Launching what would become a successful culinary career in his early 20s, a diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis powerfully shifted Seamus’ outlook on food and his life. As Seamus puts it: food nearly killed him, then food saved his life. Valuing movement both in and out of the kitchen, Seamus gives us a taste of his world.
At what point in your life did you know that you wanted to invest more in your personal fitness?
I was always very athletic and active when I was younger, but as I started to focus more energy on my career, my fitness fell by the wayside. By the time I was in my mid-twenties, I went from being an elite athlete (I was a semi-pro mountain biker) to being overweight and on the path to ill health. I was eventually diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis, and by the time I was 33, I walked with a severe limp, I was in chronic pain, and I never thought I would be active again. At age 37, I completely turned my health around, lost 65 pounds, got off all my meds, and started riding bikes again. So I would say at age 37, I realized that I needed to invest in my fitness.
What piece of advice would you give your twenty-year old self?
Yoga!!! If there is one thing I wish I had done when I was younger, it would have been to invest in my mobility.
"Lifting some heavy weights, jumping in cold water, pushing your limits…these things all make us better equipped to deal with the unexpected."
What keeps you motivated?
Knowing how sick I was and that I will NEVER go back to being sick like that again.
How do you embrace the “Better Than Yesterday” mindset in your day-to-day?
The past is the past, we can only change the future by changing the NOW. Sometimes, the day before yesterday was pretty damn good and yesterday sucked, so rather than dwell on the past, I try to focus on the now.
What’s on your fitness bucket list?
The Trans-Andes mountain bike race, climbing Kilimanjaro, mountain biking across Mongolia, learning to kite surf, getting better at enduro motorcycling….can I go on?
Why do you prioritize fitness in your life?
It’s the glue that keeps me on track. When I move well, I am more prone to eating well, and when I move well, I tend to sleep well. I truly believe that a well-used body is a healthy body. We are way too sedentary and inclined to default to comfort. Short term discomfort leads to long-term strength. Lifting some heavy weights, jumping in cold water, pushing your limits…these things all make us better equipped to deal with the unexpected.