Living Better (Or “A Short Post About My Health”)

Although I’m writing this sitting on my couch, and I have yet to work out today, I can say with 100% certainty that I’m in a much better place health-wise than I was a week ago.

For about a month, I’ve been trying to slowly add more running to my workouts (which generally consist of walking 30 minutes a day, four or five days a week). Up until last week, the most I’d run was about 3 minutes out of my 30 minute walk. Not a bad start.

But this past Wednesday, I was a having a really crappy day and I needed to let the negative energy out in a positive way. So when I got home from work, I got on the treadmill and said to myself, “okay, we’re gonna go for ten minutes today.” I borrowed the Couch to 5K strategy of running for one minute, walking for two, and before I knew it, the workout was over and I had spent ten minutes of it running. Surprisingly, instead of feeling the pain I usually feel from my knees, I felt great. So I tried it again on Friday, with the same result. The only thing that hurt was my ankle, so today I went out and bought more supportive running shoes. I’m also pushing myself to walk for at least 15-20 minutes on non-workout days, even if it’s just down the block and back, so I can say I did something every single day.

Aside from changing up my exercise routine a bit, my mom and I have been doing our best to eat better. Instead of relying on going out, or on frozen dinners when we get home from work and/or school, we’ve been making more fresh meals. We also haven’t been keeping snacks in the house, and when we feel like snacking, we’ve both been drinking tea instead (I’m drinking some Constant Comment as I write this).

Right now, my body is starting to feel better than it has in a long time. It’s a slow start, but it’s a start. What I definitely have to work on, though, is my mental health. I was diagnosed with anxiety and depression in 2009, and although I’ve found ways to manage it on my own, there are some days that make me realize I have a lot further to go than I thought. I’m hoping that, if I get accepted to Disney, the change of scenery and working in a place I love will help — it did last time. But I need to find ways to remain in a good mental state at all times, not just when things are going really well.

I’m hoping that a lot of my stress will clear up once DCP decisions start to go out (assuming my process goes the way I want  it to, of course). But until then, I need to figure out ways to keep myself distracted and keep my stress levels from taking over my life. The exercise is a great start. But there’s still a lot of work to be done. I feel better because I’m taking the steps to get better, instead of just passively waiting for life to get better on its own. Taking an active interest in my own health instead of doing the bare minimum just to get by is exactly the start I need to get on track.

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