Breaking Up Your Goals
To say I was having a few problems getting my head right would be an understatement, but that was the challenge and that was what had to be done. To dissect the process I went through to complete the race would take longer than we have time for here, but in a nutshell it was a matter of breaking the challenge up into manageable sections that I could deal with – physically and mentally.
This approach is applicable to everyday life and one I advise people to use when it comes to managing their COPD. I've talked before about COPD being individual and everyone having their own COPD challenges, but regardless of your limitations, they can be improved by applying this simple processes.
However difficult the task ahead of you, it can be made simpler by breaking down the process. Complete the tasks in manageable stages, one at a time, day in, day out, and build a routine that's consistent and aims to increase your activity.
There's a phrase I tell people to remember when they’re struggling: “The body will do what the mind tells it to!”
Life has many challenges and being mentally strong enough to navigate through the ups and downs is a valuable tool. I have no doubt that the training and races I have completed in the time before and after I was diagnosed have shaped the way I deal with life's challenges. We all have those moments in life when we are battling to breathe when exercising or even simply walking up stairs, but pushing through those times rather than giving in is what makes us stronger.
I was recently told by a fellow patient that someone needs to bottle that magic potion I take so all people with COPD could do the exercise I do. Well, there's no magic potion: it’s just hard work and a desire to live as normal life as possible that drives me.
There are many COPD patients who are active and living a great quality of life and they do this the same way I do.
If You Don't like the World You're Living in, Change Your World
Doctors, patients, carers and respiratory specialist all over the world are advocating more and more the great benefits of exercise for people with respiratory disease.
You can choose to sit on the couch and be inactive, which often leads to obesity, shortness of breath and other health issues, both physiological and psychological. Or you can change your world – be active, eat healthy and become COPD active. You don't have to run marathons, you just have to start moving and little by little your world will change.
Wouldn't you like your family and friends to admire you rather than feel sorry for you? Pity should never be something you seek, as it will feed a sense of worthlessness and consolidate the feeling that everything's too hard.
Remember the golden rule for changing your life is consistency. Consistency will soon be replaced by habit – good habits – and then you’re well on your way to a better life.
Join the club, become COPD active; your body and mind will thank you.