There’s nothing like a visit to the doctor (a walk-in clinic, nonetheless) to make one think about the decisions one makes regarding diet, exercise, bad habits, and medication. After two serious bouts with bronchitis, sinusitis, and laryngitis within a matter of a few weeks, I am thinking about quitting smoking. I am fairly motivated and am doing the “preparation” steps to make it happen, which will also make me healthier.
Another wake-up call came when I stepped on the scale. I’ve gained 13 pounds in the last three months. Winters are always a time for me to pack on the weight, but it has more to do with the fact that I am eating regularly now and not purging…and not exercising.
I have felt really disconnected from my body for a long, long time. And when I did feel connected, it was as if my neurons were mis-firing, making me think of only (what I consider to be) my negative physical traits. But mostly, it has been a feeling of disconnectedness. My body has felt awkward, like I don’t have any control over how I move or my muscles, even with fine motor skills (except for typing).
I was talking to Goddess of Mindfulness about this a few weeks ago and her suggestion was to exercise. I was being fairly willful about it (as I have been for over the last year), and said that I thought I would try meditating and stretching (like I used to do every day). As it turned out, I didn’t really get into it, I think, because I was scared of what I might find if I reconnected with my body.
As I was saying, after being weighed and being ill twice in a short time period, I thought long and hard about what I am putting my body through, and also what I am not putting it through. I have had periods in my life where I have lived very healthfully, physically and, to a certain extent, mentally. Now that my moods are more stable (and I had the doctor’s visits), I am very strongly feeling like I want to make my physical health better, which I have completely and totally neglected for about the last two years.
For the past three days, I have walked. The first day I walked at a good pace for 30 minutes, the next day 45 minutes, and the following day 60 minutes. The endorphin rush I get from walking is amazing (I used to walk up to 9 miles a day, usually 6 daily) and I had forgotten how much I enjoyed it and what a self-soothe and sacred self it is for me.
In addition, Dr. Love set up the BowFlex in the basement, along with free weights, and I worked out on it two out of those three days for about 20-30 minutes each day. I used to lift weights all through high school and loved it loved it LOVED IT and had really forgotten how much I got out of it.
One other thing that I am doing is my stretching and mindfulness for 20 minutes each day. It’s great to take a walk, do the Bowflex, and then sit and listen to my Celtic music while I stretch. SO RELAXING. Talking about it, I’m really looking forward to more of my routine today!
Dr. Love joined me in the walking and lifting on two out of the three days, and it turns out that it’s a really great way for us to reconnect at the end of the day. It’s also a good motivator for me, and for him, as well, as he says he has gained weight since we met and he used to be really physically active and is not so much anymore (other than the occasional martial arts class). It’s really a huge plus for our relationship.
In the moment, my mind and body are very connected in my head. I am being mindful of being thirsty and drinking water instead of diet soda, little aches and pains, the difference between actual hunger (I had really truly forgotten what it felt like to be hungry) and emotional eating type of hunger, and basically just feeling every last thing.
So, life is good. Now it’s all about fine-tuning, developing a routine, and getting in a healthy rut. I’ve done it before and know I can do it again. I really have the confidence and determination and internal motivation to do it now, and I am really looking forward to feeling physically healthy again.
Workout Mix by Paul that I found on YouTube. It’s fairly long, but gives you a good idea of songs to put on a workout mix. Also, there is some gangsta rap that contains language that some may find offensive.
One thought on “A Healthier Year”
Congrats on the job! That sounds so perfect for you! Working 8-5 will definately help you with a routine and be really good for you. Your last two posts have such a positive vibe to them that I can totally tell that you are on track and doing great. One thing that I have found in my battle of the bulge is that you can control what you eat at work all day by packing breakfast, snacks, and lunch. 100 calorie packs and lean cuisines are my best friends so I know what I am going to eat in the middle of the afternoon when my sweet tooth starts acting up. I started about a year ago with this walk run program that I love. It starts out with walking for 5 minutes and running for one. You do this for 30 minutes three times a week and walk for 30 minutes the other two days and sometime in the week take two days off. (I’m not 100% the exact schedule since I haven’t used it for so long but if you are interested maybe I could email it to you). Then the next week you walk for 4 minutes and run for 2. Then you keep going until you are running for the full 30 minutes (about 2 miles). I have never been in shape before this but I have fallen in love with running and it really helps keep the weight off. Once again congrats on the job it sounds awesome.