Your Health, Your Choice

Recently at a party, I overheard a  person talking to his friend about one of his colleagues who fell sick in spite of living a healthy lifestyle. He said his colleague always exercised and ate healthy. He was early to bed and early to rise. But was diagnosed with a disease which he now has to fight and win over.

So, this person, who apparently did not believe in exercise or diet said his philosophy of “what has to happen will happen. So why worry about it. Eat, sleep and make merry while you are alive” was proven once again.

I have always believed in eating healthy and exercising. And I owe this big time to my dad who has always led by example. He made sure his family always ate right. He bought healthy  food ingredients from wherever he could and made sure we ate them. He did his share of exercises and always kept himself fit and healthy. He experimented with various ingredients and some of them became his signature dishes and some, well, we requested him to never try again!

When I became in charge of the health of my family, I took tips from him and have always tried to have a healthy and tasty menu in my kitchen. Whenever I added too many healthy ingredients and ended up ruining the dish, I would blame it on my genes!

Exercising has always been a priority for me and I love my exercise regime. I have always tried to motivate my friends and family  into leading a healthy lifestyle through right exercise. I make an exercise pattern for my hubby also so that he can get some quick exercise during his busy schedule.

So, for a person like me, to hear something like ” What is the purpose of all these when we really don’t know what is in store for us in the future! “, sounds a little bizarre. I in fact felt sympathetic to that person. I couldn’t tell him anything because he was a stranger. I decided to write about it.

We are never fully prepared for what life has in store for us. But that doesn’t mean we don’t save, plan or dream. Even when we do not know if we would wake up the next morning, we set an alarm.

For all you know, his friend must be confident of bouncing back to health because he knows he has done his homework. His recovery (which is to a large extent driven by one’s positive frame of mind, which in turn depends on how much of homework one has done) will surely be faster and easier.

Some kids attend exams fully prepared. Some go for the exam unprepared. The chances of scoring good marks is definitely higher for those who go prepared. Now, if the question paper turns out to be very difficult, both category of students may fail. But those who went prepared can always say, ” I tried.” They know they have done their part.

Those who did not study may say ” Oh no! If only I had tried!” . They may not even be able to recognize between the tough and the easy questions. They will blame themselves for not trying.

The same logic holds good in this case. The chances of falling sick and of recovering from any illness is definitely higher for those who have taken care of their health.

The choice is ours. And at the end of the day, what matters the most is what we feel about the situation we are in.

The situation that we are in is not under our control. But how we come out of it is completely our call.  And to come out of it, we need some support ( some kind of a walking stick). Doing our homework and being prepared serves as that support when and if we need one.

Wishing all my readers the best of health, now and always!



Run Baby Run!

I have written this blog so many times. Each time I run, I write this blog! This is a small effort to make a couple of more people run. Run Baby Run!

There are so many articles and research materials on the internet on the benefits of running. So, what more can I add to the already existing endless list? What I can add to this list is “my experience” , “my thoughts” and “my conversations” while I run. I started running only recently! I was not athletic while in school.I only took part in team games. So, inspired by the many articles on the benefits of running, when i decided to give it a shot, I was only driven by my determination. There was no “I was good at sports when I was younger” to fall back on!

I set very small goals for myself. The first one being running continuously for 2 minutes. Then increased to 5 minutes, then 10 and so on. There are many who prefer running in a park. But i prefer training on the treadmill. The LED lights depicting the distance and the time  really motivate me. As a kid, when I was introduced to the measurement concepts in Mathematics, I always wished, if only one minute had 100 seconds and one hour had 100 minutes instead of 60, how easy the calculations would have been! But on a treadmill, I thank the same people for keeping it as 60. And now,  I wish if only 1 Km was 600m instead of 1000m, it would have been so much easier to get to my target !! 🙂

The first time I ran a 5K, my target was to somehow cover the distance. I ran, I jogged, I walked and I almost crawled to the finish line! The second time, I was determined to jog the complete distance. Its only recently that I started focusing on the time taken to complete it. My goal for this year is to do a 10K. And I am working towards it.

Each person follows a different technique while running. For me, towards the end of the first km is when I feel the most tired! Once I finish the first km, the body just gets into a rhythm. What really works for me is: listening to my favorite songs. Songs take me into a different world and my body catches a rhythm . And then, the legs keep running! 

I have invested in the following items as part of running : 

Comfortable Running Gear .  I cannot suggest one particular brand because what works for me may not work for you.  Nike, Puma, M&S, all of them have good ones. Nice bright colors always pep me up ! At pinkathon this year, I have seen ladies running in all ethnic wears. So basically, just wear what you are comfortable in!  

Wireless Sports Bluetooth Headset: If you love to listen to songs and run, invest in good wireless headset. You don’t want to be bothered about the quality of sound or having to adjust it in your ear while running! I have one from TAGG and I am happy with it. 

Running Shoes : Light weight and comfortable pair of shoes is the only requirement.

This is how I would like to sum up my running experience:

A team of all my body parts,
Led by the undisputed leader “my mind”
Working towards a goal of
Reaching the finish line!
Legs say ” We are tired”
Mind says ” you are strong, you have done it earlier”
Lungs say “I need more oxygen”
Mind says “the nostrils are doing their job”
Heart says ” I am pumping too fast”
Mind calculates and says ” it is well within the limit”
Stomach says ” I am hungry “
Mind says ” there’s refreshment at the finish line”
Finally all the parts fall in place and run
Mind keeps singing ” run baby run” 

If meditation is looking inward, then that is exactly what I do when I run. That experience of “only me” ( me, my body, my internal conversations and my goal) is beyond words. The thrill and happiness of reaching the finish line is bliss! This is one journey where both the destination and the process feels equally euphoric!