The Importance of EDUCATION in Health and Well-being
“improving your life doesn’t have to be about changing everything – its about making the changes that count” – Oprah Winfrey
Before I start writing about this topic in particular, I feel like I should explain WHY this is becoming so important to me. Not only is it becoming so apparent in my everyday life but I am beginning to fall in love with the process too. Can I ever reach my potential? How do I get there?
My health over the past couple of years has been a rollercoaster. Now I can’t imagine any skint, club loving, traffic cone stealing, drunken kebab eating student in their 20’s will be at the peak of physical fitness, unless of course they have the determination and motivation to strive for said physical composition; but I, alongside many others have not had that. I do believe that in this day and age, technological and other influences have made us lazy, not only in body but in mind too. I see so many young adults like me spend at least 80% of their day sitting at desks (which there is nothing wrong with of course career wise) but tie that in with arriving home, sitting down with a greasy takeaway and watching Judge Rinder on catch up, it’s not a great mix.
I cannot deny, I am also victim to this. It’s hard not to be. But I also fell into the category of being sucked into media’s representation of what makes girls attractive and how a body should look. Without fully knowing what I was doing, I went down the route of living off tins of soup, pizza of course!… but only one slice. Low calorie microwave meals, forgetting to eat, eating too much, Haribo/ Percy Pig stashes beneath my bed, living off of numerous cups of coffee, half an apple with diet coke…. and downhill it went, you get the gist. Now Imagine the nutritional value in my diet, imagine how my body must have been SCREAMING.
Ok so yes, I was exercising and yes, that is healthy BUT only if done properly and with a proper diet. I endured intense work outs at college which in effect left unable to function properly as a human being never mind a dancer. I thought that the small amounts of rubbish I ate I would just burn off, and I’d be fine. Just ignore it, I’ll be ok I thought. How silly was I? Baring in mind my timetable can consist up to 4 and half to 5 hours of intense training a day. I ended up looking like that size 4 plastic figurine in the window, but I was the most miserable person fathomable. My body is just not built to look that way, some peoples are, some aren’t.
Getting to the point, I ultimately just didn’t look after myself. It was my own fault, no one forced me into behaving the way I did, ending up with a vitamin deficiency. No one forced me to lose strength, energy, muscle mass and even my hair. I did all that myself. But I’ll tell you something for nothing. I have learnt SO MUCH.
I have learnt what it feels like to be weak, too weak to walk to the shop or up the stairs. I’ve dealt with that little devil we call paranoia sitting on my shoulder, and the numbing social anxiety. But I also know what it feels like to be STRONG. I know what it feels like to take part in spinning classes, Bikram yoga sessions, and circuit training sessions carrying barrels on my back. I know what it feels like to train for marathons and the exhilaration and endorphin’s one can feel from finally achieving that extra mile.
The health problems I faced are well over with now and I am now in an extremely happier and better place, both in body and in mind, which Is why I can look back on my experience with such clarity and talk freely about it. Awareness needs to be raised for those who are moving away from home, and who like me just had no idea about nutrition and was regrettably easily influenced.
TO BE HEALTHY is the target here. A target that needs to be achieved to reach my own personal goals and aspirations. Although fully recovered I am back to square 1. My muscles are far from being where they were before and it will take a lot of hard work and perseverance to get it all back. I want to be athletic, strong and capable of dancing without attaining injury after injury.
This is about HEALING and the physical and mental journey that will be taken to do so.