I got a cold. Yup. I’m sure you’re thinking, big deal! Is that really blog worthy?
Well, for me, yes, and here is why…It’s the first cold I’ve had in years! In fact, I don’t even remember the last time I had one. It’s also the first time I missed work due to an illness in a very long time. This is a major shift since for years I had been constantly sick with just about everything you can imagine, multiple sinus infections per year requiring antibiotics, pneumonia, bronchitis, allergies, asthma, eczema, constipation, etc. AND monthly colds since my childhood, only getting worse as I got older. However, since making diet and lifestyle changes, most significantly adding the Juice Plus Trio (fruit, vegetable and berry capsules) ditching the dairy, adding in a daily plant-based protein shake and leaving a toxic relationship, I just haven’t gotten these minor, but irritating illnesses. I had gotten so much healthier! So yeah, it’s kind of a big deal.
So this prompted me to take a look and ask, “Why now? Why was I not still feeling healthy? Why do I feel like I have some some extra padding?” I didn’t have to look too far. What happens when we fall in love? (Or experience any major life event!) We eat! We eat with abandon, we eat, thinking that what we’re putting into our mouths doesn’t really matter because hey, we are in love! Right? Nothing else seems to matter when our hearts and stomachs are full. I suppose that’s why my not so healthy habits crept up on me over the months; weekend and sometimes even weeknight cocktails hanging out with my love, my new husband’s exceptional cooking, eating at all hours (some due to my schedule.) Truly, I wasn’t giving much of it any thought, thinking I was ironclad and acting like I was 25. It was just easier to give in, indulge, live in the NOW rather than stick to what I knew worked for my particular body. And why not? He cooks and spoils me every single day. He even makes adjustments so that there is no dairy in what he makes, just for me. The food he cooks is not necessarily unhealthy either, although he does fry food more than I do. It’s just different from what I know works for my body. He loves his meat, eggs, hot sauce, and jasmine rice. He also likes to eat late. While I enjoy those things, including the luxury of eating later, I need more vegetables and more of a plant-based diet overall and eating past 7 PM, well, it’s not my friend. I learned this through listening to my own body over decades and feeling what works and what doesn’t. As I’ve gotten older, I found that late night eating is terribly detrimental for my middle area and my inflammation. We just get so busy and distracted and honestly, eating early is just not very convenient sometimes. Before we know it, it all piles up.
So at some point, some of you are probably thinking what does all of this have to do with getting a simple and common virus like a cold? When our bodies are under stress (emotional and physiological) and undernourished by not enough essential phytonutrients, we are not as prepared to fight off simple things like viruses, and certainly not equipped to deal with heavier and more chronic diseases like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, high sugar, autoimmune diseases, cancers and more. We need a healthy mental state, essential nutrients from WHOLE FOOD, not necessarily isolated multivitamins, clean water, and adequate sleep to fuel our bodies to perform optimally. When we let any of that slip, we put ourselves at a disadvantage.
Learning all of this was surely not an overnight process, (clearly, I am still learning) so is why I felt a bit frustrated with myself. I KNEW better. But KNOWING is not always DOING! But again, part of loving ourselves is giving ourselves grace. I did not purposely try to hurt myself. I honestly gave it very little thought, because after all, I had found love and such happiness that very little outside of that mattered at the moment.
The best thing about all of this is that we are resilient, and that we can shift at any moment to get back to what we know works for us.
So, as I start to crawl out on the other side of this annoying cold, I feel stronger and more focused than ever. I am more sure than ever that the Shred10 lifestyle I had incorporated into every day habits over the past 6 years really does make a difference. Becoming ill can be a blessing. It forces us to stop and reflect, or at the very least stop and rest which is what most of us need at one time or another but don’t do. Thanks for listening to my musings! Maybe somewhere in all of this, you will find some inspiration and hope for your own wellness and happiness journey and if needed, to get BACK AT IT or to get a new start in the first place!!! As Heather, my dear friend and a Hope Builder community member often reminds me, “Giving up is not an option!”