Not too long ago, I hit a point where my body was in the best shape it had ever been. I don’t mean I have ripped abs or buns of steel, it’s just that there isn’t anything WRONG. I have as much energy as anyone could ask for, I sleep through the night, for the most part. None of my joints hurt and my stomach isn’t bloated. I don’t get headaches or allergies and, if I feel like getting up and running three miles, I do.
But I wasn’t always like this. Luckily I came from a healthy home and a very informed momma. I started from a much better beginning than a lot of children do. But for the last ten years I have struggled with various food allergies, “chronic” knee pain, intense anxiety and depression, never-ending fatigue, and debilitating seasonal allergies. My life wasn’t horrible by any definition of the word and, honestly, I didn’t really care to get much healthier.
Then … I’m not sure what the catalyst was … maybe it was when I moved in with my now ex-boyfriend. I suddenly felt this overwhelming need to nurture and I started researching how to get both of us healthier. I started cooking and discovered that I was good at it. I think the circumstances of my life just caused it to snowball from there.
So as I mentioned above, after all this discomfort, I find myself very happily wrapped up in the healthiest body I’ve ever had. I cannot credit any one avenue I’ve taken for giving me total health. However, there are a few things that I discovered just work. The general rules that I’ve figured out and will continue to let define my lifestyle are:
1. Absolutely no medicine. Aside from crisis care, I never pop an Advil for a headache or glug down Nyquil because I can’t sleep. I have my own methods of coping with stress and illness. I have come by them after lots of experimentation and I will continue to look for newer, healthier methods.
2. Sleep is key. Sleep is your body’s regeneration time. So often I hear people complain about a whole range of ailments and then add, as if it’s nothing, that they haven’t slept a full night in 5 years. I need at least 8-10 hours sleep to feel adequately rested. It just what my body needs right now to have full energy and health when I’m awake. I’ll compromise many things to get that sleep.
3. Quality food is worth the money. GMO’s are horrible. Sugar is in everything. Pesticides are toxic. So are animals injected with antibiotics and hormones. Enough said.
4. Exercise doesn’t just give you rock hard biceps. It also gives you energy, puts you in a good mood, helps with digestion, and keeps your metabolism running. 15 minutes of sweating a day is enough. Find what works for your body, interests, and schedule and GO FOR IT.
5. An aligned spine and flexible muscles make for a happy system. An aligned spine (nervous system) and good nutrition (immune system) takes care of the frame, engine, and fuel source for your body. They work together to keep nerves communicating and organs functioning. Flexible, mobile muscles provide a safe and comfortable ride.
6. Nothing works unless your mind is on board. The power of your mind is heavily underestimated. A happy, joyful person handles hardship like a champ. A thankful heart has the power to squelch a bad mood. Surrounding yourself with love takes care of many problems before they arise.
So that’s what I’ve learned so far. I will continue to explore these areas of my life. There’s so much knowledge out there and so much experimenting to do. And it’s so fricken fun!
What are your general rules for health?
I hope you’re having a great Thursday. Love and a smile – Ash