Okay, maybe not the Greatest of All Time, but for just a minute let's think a little bit about boxing.
So we've got two evenly matched fighters. The Champ and the Challenger. The Champ has faced many, many challengers, and whipped them all. Just keeps beating them down. The Challenger has a different style though, and he's violent.
Under normal circumstances the Champ should knock the Challenger smooth out, right? Of course. But what if the Champ got lazy?
Here we are, a few months before the fight and these guys are EXACTLY even. The Challenger is going to bed at 10 every night and getting up at 6. He's getting a full 8 hours every night. He's cut back a little on alcohol, and if he drinks he isn't binge drinking. He's enjoying the occasional glass of wine, or a beer or cocktail. He maintaining his weight, and he's staying away from crappy processed foods. Matter of fact, he's loading up on good proteins, and he's eating an anti-oxidant rich diet with things like extra virgin olive oil, lean fish, and green leafy vegetables. This guy is drinking 100 fluid ounces of water a day, and getting plenty of Vitamin B, C, and D. He's going outside and letting the sun do its work for the D, he's getting Vitamin B injections, and he's drinking plenty of orange juice and STILL went to Rapid Recovery for a Fresh Squeeze IV. The Challenger is doing everything right. He's lean, he's getting the nutrients he needs, he's hydrated, he's well-rested, and his attitude is great. He's in tip-top shape.
The Champ has been in great shape, but he's not really paying great attention to the little things these days. He's eating too much fast food and not enough at We Olive. Almost everything he's eating these days is either processed, fried, or fatty, or all the above. He's drinking a little more alcohol, and a lot less water, and he's staying up pretty late. Matter of fact, he's not getting to sleep until around midnight, and the dogs are waking him up at 6. He's lucky if he's getting 6 hours a night. He noticed his morning urine is yellow instead of clear, but hey, what does that really hurt?
Now we're 2 weeks from the Big Fight, and the Champ gets serious. He starts pounding the water and cuts back on the crappy foods, and tries to get more sleep. The Challenger cruises along with his usual program.
The Champ expects he might knock out the Challenger in the first round, but that damned Challenger is stronger than the Champ expected. Adrenaline carries the Champ through the first few rounds, but what happens when that fight gets into the the 6th? He starts to fade. Not the Challenger though. He seems to have something in reserve.
The Champ is huffing and puffing in his corner, getting all the help he can from his handlers, but in the back of his mind he knows it's his fault. He'd have won this fight, and maybe early on, if he had taken care of himself the way he was supposed to.
If you haven't guessed it, the Champ is your Immune System, and the Challenger is a virus. You've won one fight after another against every virus this planet has thrown at you, but you won for a reason. You were stronger than the virus. When you were 20 and you were lean and active and went outside you didn't need to watch what you ate or anything else. Now that you're the seasoned veteran, you've got to do the little things to stay stronger than the Challenger.
If you aren't getting enough sleep, eating right, staying hydrated, and getting the appropriate vitamins and minerals, you're going to be in for more fight than you want when the Challenger enters the ring. If you get knocked around a little it's nobody's fault but the Champ's if you don't train like the Challenger.