Monday, April 9, 2012

Wellness is happiness

As most of you know fitness and wellness has been a big part of my life in recent years.  I'm not big on preachin' it to anyone who will listen though, I have this fear of being seriously annoying already.  Anyway, I can't point and exact time or day when I sat up and said "screw this couch, and this ice cream.  I'm gonna get fit."  It really happened in baby steps over a long period of time.  Which, honestly seems like the best way to do it.  Trying to change too much all at once invariably leads to failure.  

I had an unplanned lifestyle change about 5 years ago though that really worked out for the best and kind of kickstarted everything.  I had a habit of going out after rehearsals 3-5 nights a week and drinking and eating crappy bar foods.  At 10 at night.  Once that stopped, I lost about 20 pounds in 2 months.  Without changing ANYTHING else in my life.  When I noticed my clothes were hanging looser and my scale seemed to not cry when I stepped on it anymore I remember thinking how good that felt.  

And like any true addiction I wanted that feeling all the time.  So I started working out.  Just a little tiny bit a couple days a week.  I'd never been big into fitness and the thought of working out years ago would send me into a panic attack.  But I figured if I WANT to, then I should take advantage of that.  I remember reaching for something at work one afternoon and nearly falling off my chair when I saw a triceps muscle pop up on the back of my arm.  There was that rush again.   I WANT MORE!!

So I started watching the foods I was eating.  Just minding what I was putting into my body for a few months, not following any special diet or trends, just making mental note.  I found good and bad trends and started finding correlations between IBS attacks and certain foods.  I paid attention to how certain foods made me feel.  I made small adjustments here and there with every new discovery I made.  My IBS all but went away, my moods were better than they have EVER been, my depression was at an all time low.  I felt better than I've ever felt.

Then I started training with weights and bumping up my exercise to longer workouts and more days a week.  I lost another 20 pounds and was back to my high school weight.  My cholesterol is in the "ideal zone", my BMI is normal, my body fat percentage is almost normal, I can count on one hand how many IBS attacks I've had in the last 3 years, and I am happier than I've ever been in my life.

I want to bad to yell to everyone around me and say "you can feel great too!!  It's so easy!!"  But as I said I don't want to be that person.  It can be so annoying.  Plus, it's NOT easy.  You have to work at it and more than anything you have to be so patient.  It took me probably 4 years to totally change my lifestyle around to be where I am today.  Just changing one thing at a time.  And it;s still work.  Things come a little easier, but living this lifestyle requires a lot of planning and preparations.  I've been pretty lucky with my health, too.  Not everyone can just start working out and changing their food intakes so easily.  

Anyway I just wanted to share this n hopes that maybe it can help inspire someone else out there to start making small changes towards improving themselves.  Even just one small change can start the chain reaction that can change your entire life!

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