Coronavirus and increased anxiety due to my general health

In previous blog posts, I’ve written a few times about the British media and my view that most media channels hone in on bad news rather than good as keeping a nation anxious and fearful (to varying degrees) ensures continued sales of newspapers and significant viewing figures. I feel a delicate balance is needed in as much as there is a need to understand what is going on in the world without being force-fed negativity on a daily basis. As such, I try to catch 1 national news bulletin each day and no more, whilst also continually trying to source alternative and reliable news resources.

The current Coronavirus situation is a case in point. It is stating the bleeding obvious to say that this is a major and worrying situation we find ourselves in, yet the media just feed on that. Rather than presenting a balanced view of the current situation, the daily headlines hammer us with figures relating to new cases and the daily death toll. Whilst these are important figures to note, rarely are the survival rates shared. If they are, they are usually buried deep within the updates.

However, despite all this, Coronavirus has got me concerned right now. I’ve recently talked about the current lockdown situation meaning that issues with anxiety haven’t really come to the fore with me of late, primarily due to not experiencing the scenarios which typically prompt these feelings, though I am anxious about my own health. I’m hoping I’ll be fine regarding Coronavirus – as a household, we’ve certainly adhered to the lockdown guidance – though it has prompted me to consider what might happen if I contract the virus. Recent health checks have shown that I don’t have any underlying conditions, with the only issue of note being that I am carrying excess weight / body fat. As I’ve written about previously, I know I need to lose at least 3 stone to get to a weight / body shape I’ll be happy with, though I haven’t managed that yet. That bothers me, even more so in the current climate.

My real concern is that I’m not just overweight, but my general level of fitness is poor. Really poor in fact. I can’t commit to any significant physical exertion for more than a few minutes. I tried the Joe Wicks daily work-out with my daughter a couple of weeks ago and was whacked after the warm-up. I don’t say that for comedy effect either – I say it to be brutally honest and to emphasise that I need to do something about this. A short walk taking in any moderate incline often results in a tightness in my chest. My joints, particularly in my legs, are usually stiff and lock with ease. All this bothers me. Thankfully there may not be any underlying conditions but none of this is good. These days I’m more and more conscious of my age and the need to get myself in the best shape possible. I’m 46; certainly not ancient but I’m careering headlong toward 50 and therefore very conscious that I need to take care of myself more than ever before.

So, what to do about it? Well, I’ve dusted off the old Wii fitness disc and now workout with that every single day. It isn’t quite at Joe Wicks levels yet but it’s certainly strenuous (I’m feeling the burn, as no-one outside of 80’s fitness videos says any more) and I can increase the intensity as my fitness levels improve. I’ve also dusted off the fitness aids I have in the house, such as kettle bells, my trusty old stomach cruncher, a very portable rowing machine simulator and a skipping rope, the latter only to be used in the dead of night though – I’m not having my neighbours or any drones catching sight of my heaving carcass wobbling about the garden in broad daylight…

I’ve also prioritised health and fitness podcasts in my long list of downloaded episodes and I’ve just bought a smart watch to monitor, amongst other things, my daily exercise, step count, heartbeat, sleep patterns, water intake, and calories burned. I’ve previously taken a dim view of smart watches – I never truly saw the need for them – but this Covid-influenced world we’re currently living in really has changed my opinion.

I’ve previously written about the need to shed fat and get healthy, though I now need to step this up quite significantly. Mental and physical health are intrinsically linked and I can’t allow my state of mind to suffer due to my physical state. I doubt it will solve every issue I harbour though I’m fully expecting getting fit and healthy to be of huge benefit to me. I’ll keep you posted on how that’s going.

Thanks for reading, take care and stay safe.

Best wishes,

Mick

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