Friday, 28 June 2013

A value on health?

How did you go with your walking this week?
After my post last week I got to talking with my husband about walking, and asked his opinion on why we have stopped doing something we did quite naturally a couple of years ago.
The answer is rather simple.
We live in the tropics, and for nine months of the year it is simply too hot, and humid, for either of us to do anymore than a lap around the block! Over winter here, when the weather is pretty much the same as a temperate summer region, walking is wonderful. But, I don't want to set up this wonderful habit only to fall away as soon as spring arrives with its stifling heat once more.
So, we discussed the value of our health. Have you ever done that - put a value on your health?
It's quite a daunting thing at first because our lives are usually so rushed that the importance of maintaining, or beginning, a good health plan, doesn't enter the life plan radar, or if it does it's a rather fleeting visit.
On Saturday morning I actually made time to look at myself critically. I rain my fingers through the long greying hair, saw the lack of twinkle in my 54yo blue eyes, patted the soft pudgy flesh around my middle, and wobbled some flesh on my inner thighs. I saw that my nails - both fingers and toes - were cracking and peeling, and there was more dry patches than ever before across my legs and upper arms. Rounding cheeks could not hide from the mirror, my knees complained as I bent down to read the scales - and finally, the breathlessness that struck when I had to bend over to tie the laces on my trainers.
One body, one life on earth. Have I invested into it? Not really. 

So with the blessing and assistance of my husband we went shopping for a treadmill. We knew this would be a huge financial investment that in monetary terms was going to set us back a bit, but boy did we underestimate that cost!

After the initial shock of a price tag in the thousands for one that monitors heart rate, has lots of programs for varying fitness, as well as being suitable for the long haul with three of us at home using it every day. We thanked the sales person for their time, and decided to look for their same current model second hand. Within two hours we were loading one into the station wagon, exactly the same model, barely used and with all it's warranty intact, for just a 1/4 of the new price!

It's brilliant. Rain or shine, humidity or not, we can walk every day. We can walk flat, up hills, we can jog, or we can do a mix of all. It has a socket for my ipod so I can listen to music, audio books, the Bible, and podcasts.
This was great on Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, but then I got sick. So Wednesday and Thursday I was laid up with a tummy bug, but today I am much better and can get back to the new routine.
I'm just pleased that I made a conscious decision about my health, and rather than putting it aside till another day, I acted on it immediately and am already reaping the benefits. 
I have more points of value to work towards, but making life changes is all about one step at time.

Can I ask you this week to think about, and write down, what value points you put on your health?


I lost a whole kilo this week, but I think that was a mix of the walking and the tummy bug. For one whole day I only managed to stomach large glasses on gingered water, but the second day I enjoyed my coffee again and some fruit smoothies.
This fruit smoothie is one that I have most days, with slight variations. If I'm not very hungry in the morning, or if I am 'very' hungry mid afternoon,  I'll have this ....

1/2 banana
1/2 cup of frozen berries or cherries
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
2 teaspoons golden flaxmeal
2 teaspoons of stevia sweetened cocoa

Blend it for about 30 seconds and enjoy.

When I am extra busy I but the unsweetened almond milk, but other times I make my own. You can find the easy recipe HERE in a previous post.

Have a lovely week ahead, and please take this week's challenge.

Write down the things you may need to change in order to truly value your health.
Choose the one you know you can do straight away, and make that change today - or at least take one pro-active step towards that change.
Keep a list of the others in a prominent place - perhaps on the front of your fridge?
Look over them every day and as you are able, make those changes too.

It is only by slowly and patiently chipping away that a sculptor can turn a shapeless and worthless piece of rock into something of value and admiration.




Friday, 21 June 2013

lose it:naturally...

If you've had a read through the last few years of sporadic posts on this "poor-neglected-second cousin-blog-of-mine", you'll know that I have had a constant struggle with diet, weight, exercise, and healthy eating.
Girls, I have studied this stuff for YEARS.
The head knowledge is crammed tighter in my brain than a stuffed rag doll full of polyester fibre-fill!
I can lose weight - no problems there, because I know how, and it always works.
BUT, having a mindset to commit long term to smaller serves, healthier food choices, daily exercise etc...that's the revolving door issue I always discover a few months in. And nine times out of ten I walk into that revolving door and end up walking 'round till I'm back where I started - out of breath, overweight, and plagued with sugar-fueled migraines.

Well, I want to change that. 
Weight loss can be a fairly private affair for most people. We know the pounds are expanding in our flesh when doing up your jeans zipper leaves your head spinning from lack of oxygen and you almost pass out (yep, been there a lot lately); the mirror becomes our nemesis because it certainly doesn't say, "hey girl, you sure are the fairest of them all!" anymore; and we watch the vibrant fruits and vegetables stocking our refrigerator since last grocery day go limp, even mouldy.
But hiding alone to get in shape isn't going to keep me or you going long term with our desire for a healthy, active, toned life. 

Even though I have the knowledge to lose weight, I'm no expert at keeping my motivation - if I was, I think I'd be striding hills with confidence and energy at dawn every day! 
Between the knowing, and the being, there is a chasm I haven't been able to cross. And I think it's because I try to cross it alone. 
Even Moses needed Aaron and Hur to hold up his arms when he was weary during the battle of Rephidim! (Exodus 17:8-14)
Are you doing this alone too? Do you need some support? 
My arms are wide open, friend. Welcome to lose it:naturally.

I'll post here every week, sharing any new information I've discovered to help with changing my physical life for the better. I'll also offer some spiritual health along the way, because how we think correlates to how we respond to, and choose, what's best for us.

As I said before, it's hardest to make these changes when you're doing it alone.
If you're ready to walk with me, then neither of us is alone anymore.

You can put that grab button (up on the left) on your blog if you like, but it's okay if you'd rather not go public about the journey we're taking.

I'll set us both one task each week, a new habit to begin; the first of many life giving habits.

Week 1 Habit


It doesn't have to be difficult. You don't need special equipment. You don't even need special clothes.
Just put on your most comfortable shoes and some loose clothing, and walk out the door.
This can be to the corner and back, around the block, or up the hill; if you're embarrassed to walk outdoors (hey, I've been there too!) just walk around your yard. 
One lady in Australia started walking around her clothesline, and ending up writing a book about it. She started where she could, with what she had...but she started. And she actually succeeded in losing her weight and changing her life. By walking.

Let's walk this week, ok?