My last post in October was about how I was excited to be in the middle of a strength training plan that helped me drop some weight and get back into fighting mode. At the end of it all, it really did work: I lost about 15 lbs and a handful of inches and it was just the kickstart I needed to get through the holidays with a healthy mindset.
Then January brought a health scare that I talked about a bit on Instagram, when I found a lump in my breast and went through a month of testing before finding it was benign. That month brought new levels of anxiety that I wouldn’t wish on anyone: migraines so bad that I ended up in the ER one morning at 3am, a pinched nerve in my back/chest that my doctor had me get an Xray for, and itchy hives all over my body. Working out took a backseat, so yes, I dropped off the face of this blog, and gained some of the weight back. But once the anxiety cleared and the results were in, I returned to working out pretty regularly.
Then the coronavirus showed up.
I’m not going to clog up your feed with any hot takes on this bullshit, but I’m also not going to sugarcoat how I’m handling it. We’re blessed in that my husband and I both still have our jobs, and we’re working pretty much 8-5 every day, just to maintain some kind of schedule, and to KEEP those jobs. It’s been a struggle here, much like I’ve heard from other people. I’m not glad it’s happening, but I am glad that it’s shining a light on the importance of being aware of your own mental health and taking care of yourself when anxiety is at an all-time high. It’s a shame that it took locking us all up in our houses to realize it, but here we are.
I don’t know what’s going to happen tomorrow, or the next day. But I’ve been working out to maintain my sanity, whether by shutting my laptop off in the middle of the day and going for a run around town (while I’m still allowed to) or by carrying handweights around the house every hour when my watch tells me to stand up (while I wish I’d gotten a treadmill before all this happened, I sure am glad I got an Apple Watch for Christmas). I’m also still doing my good old DVD and playing Just Dance on the PS4, and using my watch’s 7-Minute-Workout app a few times a day just to get my heart pumping.
If I can laugh at anything about this whole thing, it’s the fact that suffering from extreme OCD in college – to the point where I washed my hands 50-60 times a day and bled from cracked skin on my knuckles for months at a time – has prepared me for the contamination fears we’re all experiencing today: I can track what needs to be disinfected and know exactly how to open every kind of door without using my hands. Score one for living with an acute anxiety disorder for 3 years.
But I just figured I’d pop on here and share what’s going on over here in the hopes that it reaches someone – anyone – who might need a little pick me up. I know it seems dark right now, but trust me. We’ll get through this.
4 thoughts on “Sweating Through Health Scares and Pandemics”
Hi Jess, It’s nice to read a post from you and to see that you’re getting “back in the saddle.” It’s a time like no other in living memory. We are all trying to cope the best we can, under the circumstances. Be kind to yourself. You’re right, it’s a time of imposed re-evaluation. I hope we come out more human.
My love to your mom.
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thank you for your thoughts – and said so beautifully! I’ll be sure to send my love, stay safe and sane! ❤
So glad to see a post. This pandemic is truly messing with my mind. I need to hear that we will get through it. I have continued exercising as it is so helpful to my mental health. This time has made me take a look at my life and count my blessings. I also know I have to work on my health. My diet has been crap lately and it must change. No excuses either. Looking forward to seeing you here more often. Glad to hear the health update. I had the cancer scare a few years back. It was hell on my anxiety. Both my parents died from cancer and I was spinning. God is good and I was cancer free. Just nodules. Sometimes we need a scare to be grateful.
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