Shepherding the heart – my physical heart

I recently started on a fitness programme. It is to strengthen my heart. Last month I had a health scare – my blood pressure shot up to 150/90 consistently and I started experiencing regular heart palpitations throughout the day. So I googled and lo and behold, I discovered the Singapore Heart Foundation. I called them up and discovered that they had a Heart Wellness Programme for heart patients and those at risk for heart disease. I quickly saw a doctor and got a referral.

organization_logo - SHF


What I like about it is that it gives such good support at such an affordable rate. Registration is $20 and for $40, we get 10 sessions of training. The first session is diagnostic. I gave them a 3-day food diary and a nutritionist gave me advice regarding what I should/should not eat. I gave them a copy of my medical report, they took my weight, height, family history, etc and a physiotherapist interviewed me and came out with a training programme just for me (“Oh precious little me”).


I also bought this.
It costs more than my exercise sessions.
Well, it is useful.
But I bought it mainly because it looks so beautiful…

I have just gone for my 3rd session of training. I exercise on the treadmill, cycle-machine, arm cycle and cross trainer. I also do weight lifting, leg press and side-walks. I see some others working on the rowing machine as well. Including 5 minutes of warm-up and cool-down, the whole session takes 1.5 hours. I have not felt so “exercised” and so tired for a long time. But it feels really good, to become more strategic in achieving physical fitness. I do feel my heart getting stronger. My blood pressure has gone back to normal and I do not get heart palpitations anymore.

Heart Wellness Centre

This is where I exercise!
There are 4 TV screens, showing 4 different channels…
But with no sound.
I am bombarded with visual images for that 1.5 hours once a week.
I have never been so incompletely well-informed my whole life.

I thank God for directing my path. I have always taken my health for granted, and overworked my heart. Then one day, my heart started failing. I knew I had to do something drastic if I wanted to continue to live. So I did. I had to cut down my activities to the bare minimum and in the process, I had to break a promise. It saved my physical-heart, but my soul-heart was broken and perhaps somewhere out there, another little heart was broken too.

I determined then, that I will never let it happen again. I will never let the lack of faithfulness and stewardship on my part – at least in my physical body – cause me to have to step down from a responsibility towards someone else again.

I heard this – that people don’t do things for themselves; they do it for people whom they love. That is true for me. I am selfish and self-loving. I know that keeping my body healthy is loving myself. But isn’t being physically lazy and unrestrained eating for pleasure just as loving? I may be destroying my body with my lifestyle but isn’t it MY OWN BODY for me to use – for work or for pleasure?

But you see, when you have people around you whom you love, your body is no longer your own. It belongs to your husband/wife, children, parents, friends, co-workers and nation too. They value your physical presence and your life, so you have to stay healthy, if you love them.

It is not easy living a healthy lifestyle. It takes a lot of effort and discipline. I don’t stick to it all the time. I am not disciplined enough to do it perfectly. But as long as I am in my right mind and love surrounds me, I pick up from where I left off, and I press on.

May you similarly find the motivation to cherish your body and your health.

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