I read that sentence recently and it resonated with me at this time in my life “Health is Wealth”. I’m practically at the front porch of knocking on forty’s door and this year, this last year of my thirties, I’ve had more chronic health conditions than I think I ever have. It’s literally been one thing after the other. I can happily say that I’ve managed to get rid of most of them due to lifestyle change.
I should also note that I have a chronic autoimmune disease, endometriosis, which, even after an operation in 2019 to try and remove it all, has started to creep right back in with a host of symptoms that change from month to month.
So, to cut a long story short, I have realized one very simple thing during the whole lockdown experience of 2020, that if I don’t get my act together now, I am going to spend my next forty years with chronic pain. Don’t get me wrong, I am a healthy woman in general, however, I can hand on heart say that I learnt consistency this summer. Gone are the days where I could be really health conscious Monday to Thursday and then just let loose at the weekend, the consistency has to be an everyday thing.
So, as I had a huge amount of time of my hands during lockdown (my therapy practice was closed), I decided to go back to running, every other day. I also combined this with yoga sessions and the odd online HIIT class. I up’ed my game with water, like seriously. Two litres of water (measured out with my special bottle that keeps track) and herbal teas on top of that (I haven’t given up coffee, but I have just one cup a day now). I’m working on cutting out chocolate and crisps entirely and basically, everything that enters my mouth now is from a fruit, vegetable, pulse or lean meat (I have seven to ten portions a day of veg & fruit now), 98% of every meal I eat is home cooked, with fresh ingredients. Takeaways are now a thing of the past, or a two-monthly treat, as opposed to twice a week. Everything is in moderation now, so alcohol is well under the 14 units per week and only on Friday’s and Saturdays. Even desserts like ice cream I’m saving as a Sunday treat. Is this too regimented? I don’t think it is, I don’t feel like I have much of a choice now because as soon as I overindulge in something like white bread or pizza, I feel awful the next day. I could write a whole blog on exactly what I have been eating, but I will save that for a later post.
With the running and exercise, I make hay while the sun shines. What does this mean exactly? My chronic illness means that for one week of the month, I am poorly. I have what can only be described as a split physical body disorder! Obviously, I have made that up, but honestly the difference between my heathy days as opposed to my unwell days is startling. During my good days, I can get up at 7am without so much as a yawn, do housework, do this task, that task, play with my daughter, go for a 4 mile run, come home, prepare a dinner from scratch, do a hobby or something in the evening….with the same amount of energy I started with in the morning. Then, at around day 19 of my cycle, symptoms begin to creep in. It starts with nausea after every meal, especially dinner time, it doesn’t matter how slow I eat, I want to vomit for 30 minutes after eating. Sharp pains intensify, sometimes in my back, mostly on the left side (where my surgeon had to move my ovary that was stuck to my pelvic wall last year), this pain shoots down my leg or constantly grinds in my back. When my period is due, I have the most intense exhaustion, to the point where sometimes I don’t get dressed. I can sleep for 12 hours straight but still wake up with the worst brain fog, I forget words, or cannot concentrate, I drop things constantly, I walk into things. It can be hard for me to hold a conversation….I don’t want to talk to anyone. I am a complete shadow of the woman that was pacing along the streets with her ear pods in a week earlier! Sorry for TMI but I have very heavy bleeding that intensifies the pain and lowers my iron levels, meaning I have to up my supplements (and not give up meat, something I have chosen not to do yet until I get my endo under control). I haven’t got it under control yet, because nothing works for me (from a medical point of view), so I am trying every avenue at the moment, as that one week that it takes from me add’s up to a lot of time in the bigger picture.
As much as I hate this illness, I understand that endo is not the worst illness to have and in comparison, to others, I am very lucky, someone with a life threatening illness would take it any day of the week compared to what they are going through.
So why am I telling you all this? Is it to gloat about how I’ve managed to stick to a healthy practice routine or that I’ve lost over half a stone by doing this? No, it isn’t . Because it has taken me half of my life to understand the importance of good nutrition and proper care for my mental, emotional, physical and spiritual needs and this year, during one of the worst times in our recent modern history, I cracked it. I tell you this because if you, like me, are approaching the mid-life years, or are well into the your winter years, if you are not educating yourself about your health and trying to do better, then you need to bear the consequences of what that means to you. I understand that some conditions are not our fault (as you have read, I have one of those) but, we are all responsible to make healthy choices to ease what we have been dealt with and to prevent other things from starting, because believe me, if you neglect your body now, they will come.
So, today is the youngest you will EVER be. Why not make hay whilst the sun shines and start implementing some better choices, practices and plan how you want your future to look? I personally want to retain the feeling I have, on my well days, for as long as possible, well into my golden years! It is a fact that we are all living longer now. It is so easy, when you are in your twenties and thirties to think you have all this time and that cause and effect doesn’t really apply when you are young…..well actually, you are wrong. I think for a the lucky very few, they can get away with drinking, smoking, eating crap all their life, but let’s face it, we are not all Keith Richards are we? So I say, do it like the French do, everything you love in moderation, find the balance, know what foods your body wants and needs, avoid those that make you feel awful and move your body (if you don’t use it……you lose it).
I am a working Medium, Psychic Tarot Reader, Coach & Holistic Therapist. My passion is developing my spiritual experiences and most of all, sitting with people and contacting their loved ones who have passed to spirit. Come on the journey with me!
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