Name: Amanda Pitcher … or “Pitch”
Occupation: Digital Project Manager/Producer
What does health mean to you?
For me health is about balance. Balance between nutrition, exercise, and (something I’ve never been great at) rejuvenation/rest. Unfortunately, like many people I know, I’ve learnt the hard way that pushing yourself 150% only works for a short period of time … and only works when you’re younger.
There was a time when health to me meant 11 training sessions a week between weights, running, cardio and more cardio, not sleeping more than 5 hours a night, eating a very restrictive Paleo diet, and generally going at a million miles an hour. It’s not sustainable, and it’s certainly not healthy.
So now – on a daily basis – I strive to achieve a good balance between a healthy diet that includes all food groups, a mix of intense and restorative exercise (including stretching), and trying to allow enough time for a good night’s sleep.
How do you keep healthy
I’ve developed a “bare minimum” approach that ticks MOST of the boxes of nutrition, exercise, and rest. Some weeks I can do better, and some I can only managed bare minimum. Bare minimum includes eating a very healthy, vegetable-based diet 5 days with lean protein and minimal junk, three 1-2 hour training sessions (swimming, running, weights), and walking as much as possible.
Plus, going to bed by 10pm every night. This is often my biggest challenge, but it reaps the most benefits for me. Often people (me!) compromise on sleep first – before nutrition and exercise – but it’s really the foundation of good health. You can’t exercise efficiently if you’re exhausted, and lack of sleep will send you straight to the junk food. If life is going crazy and I’ve gone off the rails, getting back on track begins with an early night.
How you stay motivated?
Surround yourself by people who inspire you every day! Alana and Chris Bowles, two incredibly hard-working people who are always so warm, kind, and generous with their time and who are truly committed to improving the health of their local community. My wonderful partner, Sarge, who is THE most genuinely lovely and wonderful person in the world (I’m biased) inspires me to be a better person and is helping me to soften some of my sharper edges.
Plus, I keep two items of clothing in my wardrobe … a pair of pants from when I was at my biggest (close to 100kg), and the first item of clothing I bought after losing 35kg (a Charlie Brown dress). One represents when I was at my biggest and least happy, and the other represents when I was at my smallest and still not happy (and not very healthy either). Somewhere in the middle of those two extremes equals happiness and health. I keep those items of clothing as a reminder that balance really is the key.
Why do you like coming to Health Associates?
So many reasons! Firstly, they’re best in field practitioners. Chris is a brilliant, brilliant chiropractor who has been instrumental in my recovery from a serious back injury/condition that had been misdiagnosed for at least five years. I’d been suffering for at least six months of extreme pain before he identified the actual issue, and within three weeks I started to show improvement – and it’s been onwards and upwards from there! Two years on and I’ve maintained good back health, achieved some awesome goals like running my 16th half-marathon, and have a MUCH greater appreciation for my body and its limits.
Carlie is THE best remedial masseuse I’ve ever been to, and with a history of marathon/half-marathon running I’ve been to quite a few. She is so incredibly knowledgeable about the body and the way exercise, imbalances, and stress can affect it, plus she can always find the tight spots and work them out … which IS painful, but for great rewards.
Plus, they’re all so darn friendly! I really feel like I’m coming to see family when I come to see them.
Advice for others wanting to improve their health?
Start small, don’t try to change everything in one go – it’s not sustainable. Take it one day at a time – it’s less overwhelming. Do exercise that you like, you’ll be more likely to stick with it, and find a group of like-minded people to train with! There is NOTHING like group support to keep you motivated.
“Get knocked down seven times, get back up eight times.”
“Nothing in the world is worth having or worth doing unless it means effort, pain, difficulty … “ Theodore Roosevelt
“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” Lao Tzu