Changing Lifestyle II
“Intensive care plan”
That other alternative medication discussion never happened with my doctor. Without really understanding, why, I decided to start an intensive self controlled fitness programme. Perhaps I felt that, unless I do something, I may soon get in very bad shape and simply die very soon.
I realized that the stupid 3 x 30 minutes per week on fitness center bicycle did not really play any real role in getting into better physical shape. After testing myself with different exercising levels, I realized that, what was really needed (in my case), was minimum 1 full hour of real running or similar intensive physical activity – and every day. It was not easy to find time for every day sports activity. In fact, there was every day many reasons and excuses to not to do any work out; everything else was more important: work, friends, family, or simply because I felt tired, lazy or sick.
It was quite a challenge to run, step or cross country train for 30 minutes and do some weight exercise for another 30 minutes every day. The first several weeks in the beginning were hard – every day, I decided to only make it 15 minutes today – but somehow found courage to make the full hour after all. Making that 122 kg to move was a major effort!.
After the hard start, increasing the running time first to 45 minutes and then to 60 minutes was not that hard any more; and my weight started to go down slowly but surely. And I finally had the opportunity to do fitness also in the morning and the evening for several months in row.
4 months of hard work, and I went back to see my doctor; we were both surprised to find out that, in spite of dropping out the medication, my cholesterol levels and blood pressure were good! – What happens to you, Mr Rapo, your values look great!
Well, I realized that my life was not fading out yet and I decided to make this my life new permanent style. As often as I could, I moved my training activity from the fitness room to outdoors. Very rapidly, my figure was changing. Every month, I was able to drop a kilo or more and soon I found myself running 10 to 12 kilometers every single day of the week and sometimes even more! I started to dream about getting to at least quarter or half marathon competitions – not to win more than myself!
About a year and a half ago, I started to go to quarter marathon competitions in Bangkok, where I have now lived for 2,5 years. Not having attended any sports competition in my adult life time did not discourage me and for the first competitions, I was probably within the last third of the 10,5 km runners – I got it through in about 1hour 15 minutes or so – not any world record, but I liked it!
To run in real competitions, was not quite the same than running 12 km in the fitness center or in the park, but not so much far away neither. I increased both my speed and time in fitness center step-by-step and I soon surprised myself getting an amazing 38 minutes time for 10 kilometer running at the running machine.
During the past little more than one month period, I have successfully participated one half marathon (21 km) and five quarter marathon (10,55 km) runs! And I am enjoying every moment of it, this running has become an addiction to me!
I have decided to keep on running as so many of the runners in the competitions that run along with me. There are both men and women that probably are at least in their seventies, so the age is not a limiting factor to enjoy the life! I encourage everyone to enhance their lives by taking control of their time and just making it happen!
Make it happen in your life if you feel like me 3 years ago! Do not let anybody to discourage yourself!
Pertti Rapo, Bangkok, December 2005
P.S. 1 I recently listened the Thai diabetes guru, Dr. Thep’s presentation about healthy life style knowledge to my company’s management. It was amazing, how closely his story about medical, fitness and dietary facts match to what I have found in my very real practical life. I realized that day how important it would be for many many people to listen and learn about simple rules to follow to gain more healthy life…
P.S. here are some facts of my achievements in medical records:
|Before 3 year||After 3 years of|
|program start:||consistent training:|
|Total cholesterol level||256 Often higher than 260||198|
|Blood pressure||average 145/95||average 120/73|
|(Often much more)||(sometimes lower)|
|Weight||122 kg||86 kg|
Best of all: The good feeling of not having to die of overweight or Diabetes related reasons at least for now!
I am currently working on getting also the sugar levels a bit better. Hopefully not eating any sweets (hardest bite: I love ice cream!) and total abandon of alcohol since the beginning of this year will show in my future tests.
Recommendation to anyone to start feeling better very fast:
1. Take control of your own future and decide yourself!
2. Start with 30 minute fitness training every single day. Run, step exercise, cross country, bike or anything. Make sure you do it enough to get out a good sweat! Check your blood pressure every day to notice the difference!
3. After first month, increase your efficient exercise time to 45 minutes/day.
4. After second month, increase the efficient exercise time to at least 1 full hour.
Based on my own experience, I can guarantee, that you will drop your eventually dangerous cholesterol and blood pressure values drastically within a 6 month period. I am quite sure that, combined with controlled food intake, also your sugar levels would improve to better. Learn more about good diets! You can easily find very good information on Internet. And remember: You yourself must be in control of your own health, not the busy environment!