The word wellness has become so comically performative that I cannot use it with a straight face. It would require so many disclaimers and apologies and contextual additions to move it beyond the associations with wealthy white women (thanks Gwyneth) it’s not worth the bother. But it’s also equally true most people do not feel well. The feeling of being healthy eludes us.
Our health degrades more quickly than we’d imagined, as if planned obsolescence wasn’t a term for software, but rather a term that describes our bodies as we move beyond our twenties. It feels intimidating to try to staunch the flow of time.
We acquiesce to our obligations, our stresses, our weaknesses and our limits. And our health degrades further. And with each turn of the wheel it seems even more impossible that we could feel any other way. But I promise you this does not have to be your life. You can feel well. I’ve come back from the brink of chronic disease. It is possible. It’s just all extremely boring and time consuming.
It’s hard work and it’s boring and repetitive and frankly your work won’t show results for months or even years. But you are not doomed to lose your health to outside forces simply as a consequence of time, stress or overwork. I’ve written a beginner’s guide to biohacking as well as an introduction to supplements. Anyone can pick up the basics and begin to improve how they feel. Just don’t expect miracles. And yes it’s a position of privilege to pursue most of it. But there are ways.
If you look at one of my typical days I split a third of my life into some type of preventive work. Just in case anyone ever wondered why I don’t socialize much. I put most of that time into my body.
I sleep a full eight hours. I meditate. I go to therapy and group every single week. I do full body compound lifting three times a week. I do steady state cardiovascular work an hour every day. Ok that’s just a fancy way of saying I talk long walks. I take my vitamins. I eat protein and vegetables. I stretch. None of that is privileged or even interesting. It is just slow boring work that builds over time.