My nursing career spans over 30 years, with time spent in critical care, psychiatry and in management. I have a master’s degree in nursing administration with a certificate in healthcare education.
Since 2007, I have been dealing personally with a growing list of medical conditions and they have brought me to my knees more than a few times. It began with Fibromyalgia, multiple cervical (neck) spinal concerns and menopause, and continued with sciatica, multiple lumbar spinal concerns, chronic bilateral knee problems, shingles and benign paroxysmal positional vertigo.
While I am not an athlete, I have been physically active most of my life. Walking has been my exercise of choice for most of this time, with a mixture of aerobics, some weight lifting, Tae-Bo(r), yoga, Pilates, cycling and lastly swimming. I have stayed active in order to keep my weight down or under control and to stay fit, especially as my jobs became more sedentary in nature.
Being a nurse, I have been careful to eat correctly, and I have changed my eating habits based on the current knowledge of the day or because it just made sense to add or eliminate certain foods. I stopped eating pork and beef in my mid 20s. My health has been extremely important to me because as a nurse, I routinely teach others what to do with their bodies, and I wanted to be a role model for “do as I do” versus “do as I say.”
This has been very challenging to me over the decades because it seemed that the more foods I gave up to be healthy, the more the dietary industry advocated for certain foods to be eliminated in order to maintain health. I have never regretted my dietary choices, although from time-to-time I miss the foods I have given up.
Another reason my health has been so important to me is because in my profession I have seen what illnesses, a sedentary lifestyle, and poor eating habits can do to the human body. I didn’t want to set myself up for those conditions that I have control over. As I have learned, not all of those things are always within one’s control. Some conditions are genetic, and all things being equal, some conditions are caused by the wear-and-tear of life.