Brain Brawn & Body
Brain Brawn & Body blogs on health, nutrition/fitness, lifestyle, leisure and finances.
My wife often asks me to walk with her. She is an avid walker. She gets her day started with a brisk walk through our neighborhood. I admire her commitment to this daily exercise routine.
As a former athlete, a weekend warrior really, I still look at walking as a wimpy way to get your fitness fit. But I must admit, it’s better than nothing and nothing is what I’ve gotten good at.
My greatest wish is for all to have the best health possible. As one who has faced many health challenges over the past 20 years, I know and appreciate the importance of good health.
While I have never asked, “why me”, I have often wondered just how someone who has never been a drinker, nor a smoker could have been hit with such devastating health issues. Obviously, there are many other factors that contribute to or detract from one’s health. But it is clear that these two aforementioned vices, which, when they become habitual, can be detrimental to one’s health.
You may not recognize his face and certainly, his was not a household name like that of James Gandolfini, the star of the hit HBO series the Sopranos. But Christian Benitez’ fate was the same as that of Gandolfini’s in that both men died of a heart attack; both unexpected.
I don’t know much about soccer. I’m not familiar with the stars of the game. I was watching ESPN and saw the story of this young man who had succumbed to an apparent heart attack. The people in the story who knew him were devastated and in shock.
Health Reporter, Essayist, Blogger
I am standing in line in one of our state's legal pot clubs, which sells marijuana to anyone with a doctor's letter of recommendation. The "patients" look similar to the customers in a middle-market liquor store. There are a preponderance of frat boys and surfer dude-types, women with tattooed shoulders and piercings and a few older folks, who might be military vets fallen on hard times. Most of us look like we are shopping for something to put the spark into Saturday night, but I am here in the hope that marijuana will help my 11-year-old daughter enjoy her food once again.
I was stunned and saddened by the news of the death of television star James Gandolfini. My daughter called to tell me. She knew I was a huge fan of the show, The Sopranos when it was on HBO.
It was hard for her to tell me, I’m sure, not only because she too is a fan of the show, but because of my recent heart issues. Gandolfini is reported to have died of a heart attack. Just a few weeks ago I suffered my third heart attack and it’s been rough on my family, my daughter and my wife especially.
In our home, we have adopted a trend that has swept America. Our home is our office. While we both have office space elsewhere, we choose to work from home often. The convenience of being able to open our laptops, participate in strategic phone conversations and conduct business from the comfort of home is in some way liberating.
All of this and we may still be in our pjs. (Don’t try to envision that!)
On this Saturday morning I can’t help but overhear my wife engaged in a phone conference with an organization we both belong to, but as president of the Milwaukee Chapter of the Black Public Relations Society, or “Beepers” as we call it, she deals with the national folks.
Lying in bed, unable to sleep, thoughts race through my mind. Those things that keep me awake are probably no different from those things that hundreds of thousands of small business people have contemplated for decades before me.
Second guessing decisions that resulted from many hours of deliberation with others and in your own mind; decisions and conclusions that seemed so hard to come to in the light of day are now so easy in the cool, dark, quiet of night.
For me now, much of it is academic; elementary even.
How could there be a question of the importance of addressing the healthcare needs of Black men? How can those who have resources, overwhelming resources at their disposal be so reluctant to attempt to improve health outcomes for African American men?
I am quite fortunate. I have lived for the past twenty years with a chronic illness. Knowing that there is no cure for the disease known as polymyositis, I've had to rely on a daily regimen of pills and medications that sometimes left me wondering if I would have felt better without them.
Clearly, I needed each one of the medicines at the time they were prescribed, but the side effects of some have left me with permanent scars. But I'm still around to talk about them. I'm also around to do something more important - I'm here to try to shed some light on the whole ordeal of living with a chronic illness - telling you that it isn't as bad as it may seem at the outset. The key, at least with most maladies that will be with you for the duration of your life is to follow your doctor's instructions, take your medications and get your rest.
Those three instructions were given to me very early on by my rheumatologist. I followed them to the letter and while it was difficult at times to obey and conform, I recognized that I had little choice if I was going to survive.