Photo on 3-29-16 at 15.01

I have been feeling under the weather for a couple of days, probably because I had a heavy weekend where I did too much. I kayaked over 2km and cycled 50km and it was hot, hot, hot in Phuket (hottest time of the year before the rainy season comes).


There is a beautiful Indonesian/Malay word ‘manja-manja’ for which there is no English equivalent.  It’s the soft, kittenish and child-like way of seeking affection and cosseting that we all need now and then because it is this softness which makes life all warm and cosy. We are humans, not robots, and we need that soft touch sometimes to remind us of the beautiful side of being a human being.

So I called my cardiologist and told him my sick story. Yes, mania-manja.  Bless him for never being sick of my sick stories, for never saying, ‘Hey, you are a doctor, you should know what to do!”

Instead he said, “Have an easy day, hey, Jac. Just do 20 minutes cardio and some yoga. Rest, drink lots of water and eat appropriately.”

I always follow doctors’ orders so:

(1) Food

I ate easily digestible, nutrient-rich food.  Bone broth with an egg poached in (yummy!) – I added some millet for carbs, but not a lot. I always have bone broth in the freezer so it was just a case of adding some fresh greens. Bone broth recipe here.

And of course, I had lots of healing green smoothies loaded with chia and flax seeds. There is absolutely no need for medicine or vitamins.


(2) Exercise

Screen Shot 2016-03-31 at 13.59.46We have to keep moving. Lying in bed moaning and groaning does not help the body.  When you are not feeling 100%, excessive workout is not a good idea (it taxes your body too much) but you have to move your body so that all the systems are animated and innervated. A slow hatha yoga practice is ideal for those who are not feeling well. But if you want to add yoga into your fitness regime, I strongly recommend Ashtanga Yoga though I have been doing Bikram at a studio on the beach in Phuket. I run 35kms a week, my hamstrings get really tight and stretching in the hot room really helps (though it is a torture).  That’s me stretching out my hamstrings.

It is important to be limber – if muscles are tight, your body locks up, movement is not fluid and energy doesn’t flow smoothly. The worse case scenario is an inflexible and weak body.

Note: The classic Sun Salutation works very well for those who are not up to a heavy practice.



(3) Cardio

It annoys me when I read negative things about running.  Running doesn’t kill you any more than other high-intensity exercises like uphill cycling or competitive swimming, to name but two. The only thing about running is, it is high impact and unless you run ‘correctly’, you could damage your joints in the long run. Other than that, it is a brilliant cardio workout.

I cannot emphasise enough the importance of a daily cardio workout. You only have one heart and the only way to keep it healthy is to give its muscles a good and committed workout EVERYDAY. No vitamins could do that for you, and heart transplant is rather drastic compared to commitment to a daily cardio workout. As my cardiologist said, 20 minutes will do.

This are the steps leading up to my house.  152 in total. I ran up and down and it was my cardio for the day.

I feel a lot better for it, so come on, folks, let’s hear it for your hearts ❤

Note: being in the sunshine and fresh air help too – Vitamin D and better respiration!