"Today we are faced with a challenge that calls for a shift in our thinking, so that humanity stops threatening its life support system. We are called to assist the Earth to heal her wounds and in the process, heal our own."
- Wangari Maathai

Friday, March 12, 2010

Health, Fitness and Losing Weight

I learnt a new word yesterday and, I must say, I am quite taken up with it.  The word is 'phantasmagoria'.  It means a 'shifting series or succession of things seen or imagined as in a dream'.

I suffer from phantasmagoria a lot!  For instance since my health and fitness levels have improved, I feel so much stronger and faster that I can see myself leaping up into a certain tree that I pass on my morning run ( much like those guys in a Kung Fu movie).  The tree is perfect.  It has just the right bend in its trunk and this is where I will place my foot as I run and leap upon it.  It has a branch at just the right level and just the right size for me to seize as I fly upwards into its branches.  Honestly, this series of images is so strong that I think it is just a matter of time before I carry it out in reality.  Of course, there is a strong possibility that instead of flying up into the tree I will only manage to jump a centimeter off the ground and finish off in a spectacular crash landing.  There is also the possibility that as I crash, a car will drive past and all 20 occupants will be staring at me. 

I play out millions of things in my imagination and most of them start up of their own violtion.  I would never have started the thing with the tree on purpose, so where did it come from?  Phantasmagoria. 

These shifting scenes as seen in my mind have altered considerably since consciously improving both health and fitness levels.  When I was still working full time a more likely scenario would have been a phantasmagoria of a confrontation with someone (usually after the confrontation) telling them all the things I thought about afterwards that I should have said to them.  The difference, when I think about it, is significant.  The tree thing is far more fun and enticing.  The confrontation scene is unpleasant and stress inducing. 

So, losing weight whilst improving both health and fitness levels has made me feel better physically as well as psychologically and a whole new cycle of feeling good has begun.  The cycle of feeling bad has been broken.  Thank goodness for that. 

Diana Elsmere