Being healthy is much more than hitting the gym and eating right or being skinny. It's how you take care of yourself on a day to day basis. Being healthy isn't just physical, it's mental as well. I do my best to stay active and eat right and over the last two years, I've noticed a big improvement in my health. In college, staying healthy can be tough. I got sick at least once a semester, and at one point even had pneumonia. After that, I decided it was time to step it up! It took me about 8 months to feel back to my normal self and lose the few pounds that I put on during that time due to steroids and lack of physical activity. I am a chronic asthmatic, which didn't exactly help my case. I've always tried to do my best to live healthy, but I wasn't doing enough. I was exercising regularly and eating as best as I could for living on a college campus, and looking back, I wasn't pushing myself and taking care of myself like I should have been.
I've lived majority of my life on medication due to my severe asthma and allergies. My asthma is triggered by weather change, and I spent many, many days in the hospital as a kid. It was really tough, but my doctor always encouraged me to stay active and reminded me that I had to potential to grow out of this as I got older. While I haven't grown out of it, it's under control. Once I really started taking better care of myself, I felt a difference, but I was still having to take my daily maintenance medicine. Because of my history (...like going into respiratory arrest at 6 years old), I never really saw myself being able to be as active as I am now, and I certainly never imagined that I would complete 2 half marathons. I carried my inhaler with my for the races, but thankfully didn't have to use it! When I last saw my doctor in February, I was really feeling good and asked about potentially not taking my medicine during the summer (when I don't really have problems) to see how I felt. I stopped taking it in May and I haven't needed it since (knock on wood!!)
My point is that being healthy isn't just eating right and working out. It's what you do to constantly improve yourself. When I first started running, I could barely run a mile without being completely winded, but this was while I was still getting back in shape after having pneumonia. So I decided to set goals small weekly goals for myself with my ultimate going being a half marathon, which has now turned into a full marathon!
It took a lot of effort to get some of those miles in. There were some days where I didn't want to do it or I wanted to cut my run short by a mile, but I knew that wouldn't get me to my goal. I knew I had to push myself. I had all kinds of workouts that I planned and motivational quotes to help me get through them! I think my favorite is "pain is weakness leaving the body." I know that when I get through any tough situation, I'm that much stronger.
I strive every day to make healthy choices because I know one of the best things I can do for myself is invest in my health. Everything from eating right and working out to washing my makeup off every night before bed no matter how tired or lazy I feel. I am the only person who can do this; no one can do it for me. I can turn to people for help and advice, but ultimately, it's my choices now that effect my future and I want a healthy and happy one!