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There are times in life where every day just is the same as the previous one. Nothing seems to change. Wake up, exercise, get dressed, eat breakfast (I hope), go to work directly or via a school-run, do the office hours, go home, eat, watch some tv or go out and sleep. Slipped into a comfortable routine. Where everything kind of stays the same. Don’t we all have those days? 

Until… From one moment to the other, everything changes, irreversible. In a not so elegant way, because that is probably the easiest way to deal with it: the deck of cards has been reshuffled, whether we want to believe it or not. Am sure we all know these moments too. 

Exactly a year ago I left my successful international expat job. I remember the feeling of euphoria after closing the office doors behind me for a last time, with nothing in my hands but my sunglasses. It was a cold and bright January day. And as I took a deep breath, I knew that I was going to be fine. Because soon I would move in with my boyfriend and him and I would continue to build our lives together.

A few hours later the feeling of euphoria vanished like snow in the Cyprus sun. The boyfriend decided we should go our separate ways (!). 

From intense feelings of freedom and personal power, to despair and panic the next. Jobless, homeless and heartbroken in a few hours.

Without an alarm to wake up to, without a boss that is expecting results, without someone to share things with, life was very empty all of the sudden. 

An example of a wonderful mix of events that could lead to nights of Netflix, 10 kilo’s plus or minus, high phone bills of calls to friends, substance abuse and the like. I don’t think I need to elaborate. 

And clearly a lot of healing to do. 

This is where Triathlon club Nireas came in.

Being active on a regular basis, and mostly the swims, kept, and increased my fitness. The swimming forced me to eat and to take care of myself. I am so hungry when coming from the pool! Yes, the pizza part of the story is coming. 

Not only that, at regular times in the week I had to go out, get dressed (yes, even putting on a track-suit was an effort in those days) and meet other people. At least say hello. It kept me social, connected to the world and community. And in a routine. Seeing your faces, always happy to be swimming and with a kind word, made and makes a world of difference to my days. 

And then, the encounters with the incredible healing forces of nature: from endless swims in the sea, to the cycling expeditions to the mountains or a simple run in the lineair park. Being in nature enabled me to breathe again. To connect with something profound inside me. 

Trees heal. The sea is meditation. Some of the mesmerizing views make you realize your insignificance in the whole (something we tend to forget often these days). 

Being active on a regular basis, meeting other people and spending time in nature. 

Basic ingredients for a happy healthy human being. 

And those basic ingredients turned Triathlon Club Nireas into my pizza. 

The special thing about Nireas is this: you can make it, or have it, as any pizza you like, with any toppings of choice:

Incorporate the latest technology, gadgets and data related stuff, become an expert on digital and social media, learn and share about nutrition and food related items, become a pro, turn triathlon a business, only do one of the sports, or only do it in summer, make it a family affair, whatever you want to add to this pizza or eat from it, it is possible and available. 

And if you are a bit like me, you keep things simple with a pizza Margerita: 

Dough, tomato sauce and lots of stringy cheese: Swim, Bike, Run.

Ah, and how I am doing compared to a year ago? My heart is healed, I have a roof above my head, and on the work front I am driving things in the direction that is mine. 

Have a blessed 2019! 

Inge Nieuwenhuis

Inge Nieuwenhuis

Inge is a writer and a life coach. From January 2019 she is the president of the Triathlon Club Nireas.

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Triathlon Club Niras is a non-profit organization registerd by the Ministry of Internal Affairs under registration number 1439. We are the oldest Triathlon Club operating Nicosia Cyprus since 26th April 1994. We love sports and avoid politics.

All content on this website is copyrighted by Triathlon Club Nireas, distributed for free publication or has permission for publication.

Web site, and logo by Pavel Kozlov.

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