Take a break when you need one

April 3, 2007

Sugar is really, really unhealthy for you. (I’ll go into greater details in a later post).

About five years ago, I decided to ban sugar from my life completely. Before that point, I was a complete sugar-addict, and I’d eat sugary stuff all day long. It helped that I wasn’t a tea or coffee drinker back then. But still, going through days without sugar was very difficult.

I gave in after about two weeks. It was impossible to give up sugar completely back then, but I did appreciate the fact that sugary things were treats, and not things to munch on all day long.

Fast-forward till about two months back, when I realized that I was having too much tea and coffee, with a lot of sugar each time. I decided to start having most of my cups sugarless, since that was tastier than low-sugar. About two weeks back, I started on an intensively self-disciplined program which included waking up very early, cutting out most sugar (one teaspoon a day), exercising vigorously and throughout the day.

I collapsed a few days back, after a really strenuous yoga class left me with a back-ache. As I was leaving the class, the instructor advised me to put hot water bottles over any aches. I disregarded that advice, and the pain went away with some light stretching. But I just didn’t feel like working out. The next day, my workout was a mild upper-body workout, and I had sugary dessert (a little bit). The day after that, I felt I didn’t want to work out, I was craving sugar, and I was tired. So: I didn’t work out. I gave in to my sugar cravings, and had a tiny piece of sugary dessert. At night, I decided that if I still wanted sugar, I would have piece of my favorite dark chocolate. I didn’t, since I forgot the chocolate while I was browsing and talking with my SO, but I woke up two hours late the next day.

And I don’t feel the slightest guilt. I’ve already had a good upper-body workout, I no longer crave sugar, and I know I’ll be up tomorrow 🙂

I think we need to accept the fact that our bodies have limits. Trying to push myself in three directions simultaneously is a bit difficult. But apart from difficulty, I don’t believe you should push yourself excessively.  I’m glad I took a break. I feel quite rested, and in retrospect, I didn’t do anything very harmful, like gobbling up two or three chocolate bars.

The danger of taking a break is that it becomes permanent. But recognizing it as a break is ok: and I’m happy, now that I’m back on my track.

A seperate health blog?

April 3, 2007

My major blog is Life PBS.

I’m not really an expert on health. But I do give it utmost importance in my life, and as such, I tend to read up a lot about health-related things. And then I practice those in my own life. Unlike many people who just read good advice, appreciate it, and then forget about it. Practicing something makes you understand whether something actually works for you or not.

However, I’m not sure if I should keep a seperate site for my health advice and thoughts, or whether I should merge with Life PBS, which is mostly a site about happiness.

For the moment, I guess I’ll try to maintain the two seperate sites. I might, however, merge them in the future.

Being healthy is a lifestyle

March 29, 2007

aerobics-girls.jpgHealth is one of the great blessings that we take for granted until we lose it. One of my favorite sayings about being healthy is this: he who does not make time for exercise, must make time for illness.

That about sums it up– if you neglect your health, it will come back to bite you. Of course, many things cannot be prevented, but even then, being in shape is an advantage in weathering the difficult times and while recuperating.

These days, being healthy is not easy. That’s because our default lifestyle is completely different from that of our prehistoric ancestors– even though our genetic structure is still basically the same. Instead of eating fresh produce, we have artificially cultured and grown food. Instead of being active hunting and gathering, we sit on our asses watching TV and working all day long. We rarely stop to consider that our lifestyles are actually very damaging for us. And chocolate cake is always too tempting!

Being healthy is difficult, and there are no quick fixes. You have to sweat while you exercise, and you have to forgo some of your favorite foods.

It can be made slightly more pleasant in some ways. However, your mindset must be there: that it might not be as easy as lying back and drinking beer, and it’s not a road of least resistance, but that you’re willing to do what it takes, and that you really, truly understand the importance of being healthy.

Photo: “The Aerobics Girls Warming it Up” by kk+