My Health Initiative

A few years ago during a doctor’s visit a nurse said in passing that you didn’t want to carry a lot of weight into old age, as it would literally weigh you down. I am reminded of that discussion every time I see someone struggle to make it up the subway stairs back to street level. I don’t find three stories of subway stairs particularly easy, but I’m determined to do my best to keep them from getting any harder on me.

Also, being middle-aged, my later years are staring me in the face asking me what I want the future to look like.

I was not raised with a focus on physical health. My parents were not exemplars of exercise. My family members, me included, like to sit or lie down and read books. We also like to watch movies or television. We like narratives.

My life, or put more simply–how I spend my time, is my story. It is a story about  my personality, values, habits, and about inward and outward love.

I’m trying new ways of being loving towards myself. This consists of two changes: 1) move my body more often, frequently by walking, and 2) be more mindful of the foods I eat.

In order to do #1, I need to schedule exercise into my weekly schedule ahead of time, and I need to seize the opportunity to walk whenever it presents itself. To do a decent job of #2, I need to go food shopping at least once a week to make sure I have ample interesting fruits and vegetables on hand so making better choices comes with ease and pleasure.

I’m better at movement than thoughtful eating, though I’m making steady progress in both categories. My health initiative takes effort.

(Concentrating on health while taking 10 hours of class a week is…interesting. I’m giving up certain things for this six-week class-taking period, like writing fiction. It’s a temporary sacrifice. But I am not going to give up on my health.)

And it’s exciting to see the new me slowly unfold, with a small strut, as I gradually feel better, and gradually fit better into my clothes, and into my future.

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