Tag Archives: Health

Living each day.

Living each day.

Whether it is the dangers of the ring, such as the one that has seen Ishika Lay on her long road to recovery from second-impact syndrome, or something closer to home, such as the sudden illness of a relative or friend, living each day to its fullest is an important mantra:  even when that means walking away from the things we love to do.

That means not only pursuing your dreams, but knowing when to sit out because the risks are too great.

Have a headache after sparring that won’t go away?  Go and get it checked out and follow the mantra:  when in doubt, sit it out.

I know we all tend to ignore the long-term effects of our actions or even cast a “blind eye” to their very existence, but headaches and the like are also symptoms of acute problems that can be dealt with much more readily early on.  Sometimes it is only a matter of facing down the demons that seem to haunt us when we contemplate the “why” question that prevents us from taking the next step — say to a doctor’s office.  Not to do so, however, is to play a dangerous game of roulette with one’s own health and well-being.  It is also an example of breaking a cardinal rule that can best be translated as cheating at solitaire.

Here’s another one: Do you have indigestion every time you eat a slice of pizza?  Or in the absence of that, cough after every pasta or pizza meal?  Has it seemed to escalate at night lately, even when you don’t eat pizza? Go and get that checked! And P.S. … stop eating pizza and pasta till you know what’s going on.  At the very least you might have GERD (Gastric Esophageal Reflux Disease), but it also might mean (depending on your age), that you are starting to see changes to the actual make-up of your esophagus (Barrett’s Esophagus) which can lead to “no joke” complications.

I bring this all up because so many of us “live” with things that we think are nothing that end up being a big something in a hurry when we least expect it.  When that happens the effects are often horrendous, both to the individual undergoing treatment and to family and friends who suffer along with each bump in the road.

Athletes presumably have a great sense of their bodies – certainly of the cause and effects of too little sleep, poor eating habits and so on; however, that doesn’t always translate into evaluating the relative risks of injuries or of even recognizing that the twinge in a shoulder is really a rotator cuff injury about to blow.

That’s when we all have to take some responsibility not only for our own health and well-being, but for what we see going on around us by taking to heart the “if you see something, say something” mantra.  Sure, you might be accused of putting your nose into someone’s business, but you well might recognize something that your sparring partner just doesn’t see.

Part of living each day certainly translates into living it with gusto, but we also need to be cognizant of all the aspects of our day, even the things we’d rather ignore.  The problem is the things we ignore have a way of slamming us in the face whether we acknowledge them or not, and for my money, it’s better to face an issue head on than wait for the unexpected surprise.

If you have your health …

If you have your health …

I have close friends and family who are in varying states of getting their butts kicked by illness and the uncertainties that ill-health can bring.   Whether life-threatening as in some cases or debilitating to the point of being life-altering, the old adage that goes, “if you have your health you have everything,” rings truer than I can say.

Watching formally healthy and robust people impaired by illness — even for the shorter term is difficult to reconcile.  And yet those of my friends and family who find themselves at that place where the fight for a modicum of normalcy equates to a lot of wishful thinking puts me in mind to how grateful I am  to be able to choose or *not* choose to haul myself to the gym to work out, or to fight my way from dreamland on to the mat for morning Yoga.  Which of course reminds me of the fact that I’ve blown it off of late — and in working through how to get back into the habit of pre-dawn downward-facing-dog poses I am not only thinking of it as a matter of will power, but of something deeper:  taking responsibility for my health, frankly, while I still have it.

As every boxer knows, the dedication to workouts, healthy eating, making weight safely, and importantly, a training routine that works with one’s body not against it are what’s needed before ever stepping into the ring.  And why not with life too — and with the everyday fun of work and play with minds and bodies free of the stresses that too many late nights, fast-foods loaded with fats and sugars and not enough time spent attending to the prevention of illness can bring.

Goodness knows I am not one to talk having just eaten the delicious slice of Mother’s Day cake my daughter lovingly bought me, but … that’s not to say that one can’t have one’s cake and “eat it too.” One can put some thought into eating and living healthily with the occasional cake and ice cream carved in to it — and no, not a pint of chocolate chocolate chip at one sitting, but a hearty scoopful.

I guess the point is to mind what your mother always told you, stuff like, “a good breakfast is the most important meal of the day,” or “take your vitamins,” or “don’t watch too much TV, it’ll rot your brain.”

Well you get the drift.  Doing what you can to stay healthy really does count for something, so please, for your Mom, try to remember yours.