Most of my adult life had been beset with illness and frequent hospital visits. However, just before my 40th birthday and after a particularly difficult month in hospital I came to the realisation that things had to change, there simply had to be more to life than cycling through states of being reasonably okay, not being okay and experiencing deep and troubling depression. It was clear that even though I had excellent resources, great doctors and a very supportive family, there was still something missing.
I spent a great deal of time that year in reflection. A major realization was how negative my internal dialogue and thoughts were. So began my first real big change, which was to stop being my own bully and becoming my own cheerleader.
It was small steps to begin with but in 8 months I had lost 30kg, was healthier than I had ever been and the handfuls of medication I was taking morning and night diminished considerably.
Fast forward 6 years and I was medication and therapy free, to nowadays where I very rarely need to see a doctor, (even then it is only for general ailments) and I am excited about my future. I also spent these years studying, researching, learning and trying to understand what actually happened and why. Was it really as simple as me just changing the way I spoke to myself?
It Really Is A Journey
As much as I wish it was so, I was not hit by a single epiphany or a watershed moment where I had to make a life-changing decision. It would have been great to pinpoint ‘the change’ and then let everyone know what to look out for, but as I have come to realise, life does not work that way. For me, it was a bit like waking up from a deep sleep where it takes you awhile to become alert and be fully conscious. My ‘process’ has been (and still remains) a journey rather than a single moment and I have learnt many things along the way. Initially, it was very difficult to find information, especially since I did not know exactly what it was that I needed to do. But, for each new thing I learnt, I was able to get more direction and finally see a path.
Things grew from hours of internet searches to reading books to finally reaching a point where I decided I wanted to do professional training.
I realized very early on that my state of mind and thoughts were a major catalyst and as such I enrolled in the Institute for the Psychology of Eating. I became a certified Eating Psychology Coach; where I solidified my belief that wellness and health were inextricably linked to mindset.
Movement and exercise was another integral part of my journey. I began with walking and slowly escalated my level of exercise, culminating in a serious back injury due to over zealousness at gym. This was a major learning curve for me where I realized that we often chase what we think we should do as opposed to finding what is appropriate for our bodies and psyche. While I am currently enrolled for Personal Trainer training. I am doing these studies not to become a personal trainer but because I want to understand the body better. Understanding the body systems in relation to our thoughts and nutrition is an important pillar in creating a healthy lifestyle.
My younger self always looked to food as a source of weight gain or weight loss. It took a serious illness to make me realise that food is so much more than that. What we eat becomes us and our bodies are not simply input and output machines. Realizing that my weight loss and eventual health was more about what I ate than how much I ate was a profound realization.
I studied and became a certified Culinary Nutrition Expert and joined their international team of Accredited Trainers, (see my Nutrimentals page for ACN accredited workshops as well as my own cooking classes and how to’s). This helped me truly understand how powerful food is and not just a fuel source.
My choice of studies solidified what has now become the foundation of what I believe to be the road to health. We cannot isolate a component like food or exercise if we are looking to improve our overall health; just like our bodies systems, they are not independent of each other. Our bodies and therefore our health journey is a cooperative system that needs to include mind, body and nutrition.
The Way Forward
Through this website, classes, workshops and blogs I will share my thoughts, knowledge and discoveries on each of these topics, sometimes separately, sometimes collectively in the hopes that you too can find your way to health and wellness.