Time to follow Doctor’s orders……

This post has nothing to do with creativity, not a thing.  Which makes it harder to write, as I’m WAY more comfortable talking about arty goodness than I am about.

Oh crikey.

Health and fitness.

Somebody shoot me now.

I adore my work, and because I adore my work I do it every single day, I do it early in the morning and late at night, I do it when I need to be resting, goofing off, sleeping, eating, cuddling my fella – and exercising.

So.  I shall own up.

I have overdone it, burnt the candle at both ends and treated my body like it’s a robot with a never-ending power supply and self repair mechanism.

Which it isn’t.  Obviously.

Lately, my body is rebelling by picking up colds, unsettled digestion, hayfever, crappy skin, general exhaustion and headaches – which is really slowing me down and making me feel about 100 years old.

Also, depression triggered by boredom triggered by not being able to do the things I love, crabbiness, general ennuie….

I’m coming out of the closet, so to speak, as overtired and overworked, and under nourished in every which way at the moment.

I’m coming out of the closet as ‘not perfect, not coping right now, not OK at the moment’.

I’m also totally done feeling like this. Enough says I!

I’ve decided I’m going to actually follow doctor’s standard advice for optimum health – 30 minutes proper exercise 3 times a week, 2 litres of water a day, 5 portions of fruit and veg a day and 8 hours sleep a night.

For at least 8 weeks.

And the best way to stay accountable is to record it for you, dear reader – and perhaps you’ll see something useful for yourself in my journey, who knows?

If you are as not-into-health-blogs as I am, then you can skip the ones in this category, I honestly won’t mind.  I’m kind of boring myself, already, with all this talk of sensible living!

So, day three is where I am now.

Actually, I don't think I look like that smug person in the top frame, not even when I'm fitter than I am now!

Actually, I don’t think I look like that smug person in the top frame, not even when I’m fitter than I am now!

I started a running programme on Monday – right at the beginning beginners section as it’s been so long since I did any regular exercise.  Even the beginner interval training felt stupidly hard.  I am too embarassed to say how little running I did, and it was still hard.

As I ran home (for which read:  limped, panting and red faced), past our local school, I could hear a PE teacher yelling.  It was like some awful high school flashback.

Honestly, I don’t like running much – but it’s simple (no equipment other than shoes which I already have, and I can do it from home at no cost – removing many excuses!).  I know it’s best to find an exercise you enjoy, but I really only enjoy dancing and swimming in the sea, and I can’t get to a class three times a week, and I don’t really want to turn dance into an obligation, either.  The sea here?  It’s cold except for one afternoon a year, sometime in late July.  I am not kidding!

So, unless I get my act together for some other form of 30 minute exercise, running it shall be.

I was really pleased there were no people around to see how badly I struggled on my first run.  It was quite sunny and I got really hot and just couldn’t get any kind of stride going.  It was not a pretty sight, I’m sure.

Run two is tomorrow.  

I’m using the ‘5K’ runner app on my iPhone for the runs, so there’s an annoying voice (you can choose between male and female – equally annoying) telling you when to run and when to stop.

Honestly, based on my performance I can’t possibly imagine being able to run 5K in 8 weeks like they say – luckily I’ve done this before and I know it’s possible!

(I trained for the Great South Run years ago with a group of people from work – I still didn’t enjoy running by the time I could do 10 miles, but I did enjoy how good I felt!).

The food and sleep bit was much easier – I drank plenty of water and because I wasn’t working in the evenings, the good night’s sleep was easy for the last two nights.

I worked from home yesterday so eating regularly was simpler, too, although on both days I think I had more fruit than veggies, and I think it’s meant to be one or two pieces of fruit to three or four veggies, so I’ll try for that today – it’s veg box day.

Of course, as is always the case when I change to healthy living, I feel awful today.

Which may mean I’m allergic to running.  But probably doesn’t.



Disclaimer thingy

I am sharing because I want to remain accountable and I think it may help others to witness a real experience.  Please DO give me encouragement and kind wishes.  Please DO NOT give me any health, fitness or diet advice, thanks!




Time to follow Doctor’s orders…… — 17 Comments

  1. Ah Jani! I feel your pain! I have been there! and indeed still am, in many ways! Couch to 5k is a great programme, you’ll do fine. Like you, I don’t enjoy running, but I WANT to enjoy it! Now I’m 10 miles away from the nearest gym, it’s really the most sensible form of exercise for me, plus I do have gorgeous scenery to distract me from the horribleness of it, so I’m going to try to join you with 3 runs a week in the hopes I will grow to love it! Oh and I know you don’t want advice but hopefully you won’t mind this – get a wetsuit – doesn’t have to be a pricey one, mine was £15 out of Aldi, but it makes sea swimming much more doable – I managed a sea swim here in Scotland in mine a couple of weeks ago 🙂 Thanks for your honesty and sharing, its why I love your blog! xx

  2. Hi Jani
    I have used that app too, it is great and I can identify with your post.

    I sometimes put on a great song and just dance at home, its great fun especially when no-one is watching – I don’t need special equipment.

    I can’t recommend the Book Moon Time enough – it helped me understand the ebbs and flows of energy that goes on throughout the cycle and often when I am at my lowest ebb is when I am often telling myself I need to exercise more… (not that I am suggesting for one minute it is what you are doing!) For me the greatest lesson was to listen to my body and rest.. accept that I need to have a sanctuary sometimes.

    hugs x

  3. Thanks Susanna – I will look that book up as it’s something I’m very interested in! I am taking a sanctuary day today as I feel like poop (on account on the running allergy, you see!).

  4. Thank you Jani for being an open book! You have an awesome opportunity to channel your creativity, passion, and determination into a process that is so difficult for so many. I will certainly be cheering you on at every stage!!!!! 🙂 🙂

  5. Yay, a long distance running buddy 🙂 I am thinking of a wetsuit, actually, as I do really miss swimming in the lakes, rivers and seas and it’s just been too cold the last few summers. Sea swimming is Scotland though – hardcore, Missus!

  6. Running allergies can be very serious you know……I have to medicate mine with chocolate, or wine, or both, tho not at the same time and not whilst running.
    Dog walking is my chosen/ imposed routine. Sometimes I do it really energetically and the dogs wonder what the hell has happened as I am more generally inclined to mooch with the pooch.
    Belly dancing was my most favourite ever structured excercise thingy…….got the equipment for that…..namely the belly and a jangly belt.
    Sometimes this fundamental level of self care is just so hard to do/ easy to ignore.
    All I can say is ‘go Jani’ ……hear me clapping and cheering you on?

  7. Jani, this couldn’t have been more timely for me to read. Thank you for sharing and I wish you both rest and exercise (cos somehow they can be the same thing). For a host of reasons, I’m in a ditto situation and feeling absolute pants. I know perfectly well what I need to do but oh isn’t it tough to get started? So… pouring a big glass of water right now and off to borrow a dog…

  8. You go, girl!
    I have huge admiration for anyone who tackles the Couch to 5k challenge and uses an app to record progress and success. I’m sure you’ll be recording plenty of both!
    When I was told I had Diabetes Type 2 and needed to lose weight, I first got irritated with the doctor because I’d tried to lose weight/get fit on many occasions but not succeeded. He gave me two pieces of advice – cut out carbohydrates and walk. I could only walk 15 minutes at a time to start with and I’ve never progressed to running because it troubles my knees. Nevertheless, from 12st 4oz, I went down to 10st and felt great.
    Little, often and consistently seems to be the best target – good luck XXX

  9. Jani,
    I must say that this is THE MOST HILARIOUS blog post I have ever read on Health/fitness, which made it thoroughly enjoyable and I’m rooting for you!! I appreciate your honesty and your sense of humor is reliably in tact, which can go a long way toward health/fitness tolerance. 😉

    Be refreshed,
    Dawn Herring