Thursday, August 30, 2012

One for the road

The motor on my Kia is quite picky.

My mileage plummets when I get gas from an unfamiliar station. My "CHECK ENGINE" light will shine like a Christmas tree if I try to fill the tank with anything less than high-octane fuel.

Lately, I've found myself wishing my body was more like my Kia -- sleek, sporty.

Wait. What? No.

While sleek and sporty would be nice, sometimes I wish people came with fancy gauges and on-board computers with little blinking lights to tell us when we're experiencing difficulties.

Could you imagine?

"Sorry, I can't do laundry tonight. My CHECK KATHRYN light just came on."

Even if our bodies had little knocks and pings to tell us when we're in distress, it would be helpful, right?

Guess what? Our "on-board computers" generally work just fine. We just need to understand its encryption.

Our bodies often give us indications when something is amiss. My indications came in the form of side aches and joint pain. Sometimes they came in the form of disturbing dreams.  (More about this in a later post.)

Oddly enough, up until my severe bought with depression, I always thought I could read my body's signals pretty well.

Fact of the matter is I didn't have a clue until I slowed down, gave myself a long timeout and really started acknowledging my own feelings, stresses, fears and weaknesses.

When.I.Stopped.Trying.To.Be.A.Pillar.And.Admitted.That.I. Needed.Help.

That's when I realized that not only was my CHECK KATHRYN light glowing, but my whole dashboard was lit up like the Vegas Strip.

Even then, it took me awhile to quit ignoring the light (which I still often do) and to admit I was using the wrong fuel for maximum performance. I will testify right here and right now, though, that what you put into your body has a direct impact on the performance you get out of it.

It's easier -- and a lot cheaper -- to run on garbage like soda and sweet treats, but I think most people know we should be fueling up with fruits, vegetables and lean meats. (I think I just had a Dr. Seuss moment.)

If we know this, then why is it so hard to feed our engines the proper fuel?

I think I know the answer. I'll talk about it on Monday.

In the meantime, I have another challenge for those of you who like to finish your meal with a sugary dessert. Try replacing the sweet finale of your noon and/or evening meal with a half cup of fruit and see what it does to your sweet tooth.

And remember...really listen to what your body is telling you.

What are your plans for the holiday weekend? Leave a comment below, tweet at me or email me.

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