This is a page that I completed yesterday in my art journal, and it’s called, “Rediscover Your Heart.”
For me, 2016 has been a year of reclaiming my health, one small improvement at a time. This summer, I’ve set a goal of losing ten pounds and have established a daily exercise regimen, which unfortunately isn’t something to which I’ve been greatly committed in the past few years.
Back in 2010-11, during a period of great anxiety and uncertainty, I gained 60 pounds after being prescribed the antidepressant Prozac. The excess weight took a major toll on my small frame, and strenuous activities such as running (which I’ve loved my whole life) put a lot of stress on the joints in my legs and became exceedingly difficult and painful. In addition, the extra pounds caused me to experience more issues with my asthma. Consequently, I pretty much stopped exercising and my fitness level suffered greatly. In 2014, when I stopped taking the medication, I quickly lost 40 pounds, but up to this point have been unable to drop the last 20. While I don’t feel terrible about my current weight, I know I could still stand to lose a few pounds. I also know I could and should get back into some semblance of good physical shape, because I’ve always been healthier and happier when I’ve been active. Exercise is beneficial for one’s lungs and heart, and that’s of the utmost importance as I get older, especially with my family history of cardiovascular disease.
I started running again a few weeks ago, and even though I struggle with some old injuries from my days as a high school and college tennis player, it’s been going well. To prevent pain in my hip joints caused by frayed cartilage, I wear compression stockings and shorts and run only short distances; I augment my runs with low-impact biking and swimming. I can feel my strength and stamina growing, and my breathing is getting better. I’ve even lost a couple of pounds already!
This page, which celebrates my rediscovery of my love of exercise and the importance of being heart-healthy (both physically and emotionally), was built upon a collage of old book pages, paper napkins, ephemera, and Washi tape, and also includes spray inks & stencils, pigment inks & stamps, tape, stickers, die cuts, and pens.
What is a goal you can set for yourself this summer, to improve your health? Take one step at a time, one foot in front of the other, and you can make it happen!
Have a great week! 🙂