Exercising and eating healthy to prevent serious illness

by monica

mom was diagnosed with ideopathic pulmonary fibrosis a few months after this pic was taken.  I think I was 32 at the time.

mom was diagnosed with ideopathic pulmonary fibrosis a few months after this pic was taken. I think I was 32 at the time.

mom was diagnosed with ideopathic pulmonary fibrosis a few months after this pic was taken.  I think I was 32 at the time. raising 4 crazy kids keeps you busy but it doesn't keep your body healthy mom doing all the office work at dad's business teaching my son to play the piano

We don't have much time left with mom and I often wonder if her disease could have been prevented with regular exercise. I know that so many other conditions are easily prevented with regular exercise and a healthy diet (not a long story but a sad one).....


Both my grandmothers were diabetics and so many of my family members suffer from depression or severe menopause or have high blood pressure and high cholesterol or heart disease.

I think this is one of the reasons our mom was so gung-ho about signing us up for any and all available activities when we were kids. Some of those activities I loved (ballet/tap/jazz, marching band, swimming) and others I absolutely hated (soccer, tennis, karate, track).

Mom encouraged us to bike, skate, and walk places and had a basketball hoop and jungle gym installed in the backyard so we had plenty to do since she only allowed us one hour of t.v. per day. She also never had soft drinks or sugary cereals or junk food in the house. I don't think she ever imagined that I would end up with my own personal training business but looking back it makes total sense. It's like she was sending a big loud message to the four of us that being healthy and fit is the best way to live and I was the one that really absorbed it.

The thing is that like both my grandmothers mom wasn't into exercise but she stayed super active cooking, sewing, cleaning and chaufferring around 4 kids plus she helped run dad's business and somehow still found time to practice the piano and teach piano lessons. I honestly don't know how she did all that she did but I suspect that high stress levels and not taking the time to take care of her own body could be one of the many reason she ended up with a terminal lung condition (ideopathic pulmonary fibrosis) for which there is no known cause or cure.

This horrible disease has been destroying her lung tissue for nearly 9 years and she is now in the last stages which is incredibly difficult for her and for dad who takes care of her 24/7. It's also very difficult for the rest of us who have seen her transform from this vibrant energetic person into a very fragile 100 lb woman permanently attached to an oxygen tank and a wheel chair. Her condition is so serious now that getting out of her chair or bed to go to the bathroom could send her into cardiac arrest.

Mom told me a while back that she wishes she had loved to exercise as much as I do. She too feels that maybe it would have helped her stay healthy longer. The truth is, you don't have to love or even like exercise you just have to do it. If not for yourself do it for your family who wants to keep you around as long as possible.

As you may have guessed by now this is my #1 underlying exercise motivation.



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