Amanda Thebe is a fitness and women’s health expert. She is a force of nature for women who are experiencing menopause hell and want to start feeling healthy and fit in their 40s and beyond. You can pre-order her upcoming book, Menopocalypse, on her website, Fit & Chips. Amanda contracted coronavirus in March, 2020. Hoping for a quick recovery, Amanda continues to deal with the long-term effects of this debilitating virus. In this podcast, Amanda and I talk about what it means for an active fitness professional to find themselves taken down by Covid-19.
Until I had this chance to talk to Amanda, I had only come across one story, on BBC Sport, were a fitness trainer, someone who was also a successful Olympic weightlifter, fit and healthy, in their twenties, talking about how three months after the fact, they have still not recovered. I also know from personal experience, having a client who was confirmed as virus positive, having had asthma as well, continuing to really struggle. He has a garage gym, a small walk from his house, obviously, but even that short walk can take him out, forcing him to sit down on a bench and take ten minutes to recover before he could move again. Therefore, this is an important subject because, as Amanda says in the podcast, beyond people recovering or dying, there is little talk in the press or conversation otherwise about the long-term suffering of a large group of people who have been diagnosed with Covid-19.
Like everyone else, Amanda watched how celebrities like Tom Hanks and Idris Elba were dealing with their own bouts of coronavirus. As she watched their very public recoveries she felt disheartened by her own long-term symptoms and lingering suffering. She discovered a Facebook group, Covid-19 Survivor Corps, one of many, where she came to realize that there were thousands of people like her, suffering lingering effects with a great degrees of suffering and damage, weeks and weeks beyond diagnosis.
One of the salient points made by Amanda about her experience is the way it has reshaped her approach to exercise. Obviously, she was a very active, very fit, professional trainer who had to adapt to the limitations put on her output, which is very hard for a person with that kind of background to do. Amanda didn’t get to train for four months which left her feeling very weak. So, we get to talk about how she has adapted and what that means to anyone who has to come back from trauma or injury or any other situation that leaves them unable to jump back full-throttle into a workout regimen.
Usually I am doing podcasts about putting on muscle and advancing your personal development but this was a fascinating insight into something that is affecting everyone around the world, and it certainly opens your eyes up to issues that are not prevalent in discussions about Covid-19 as well as helping us understand how fortunate we are if we have the luxury of being able to get in a gym, lift weights, workout, and do the things that we enjoy. It is very true that if you don’t have your health, you don’t have much. Fortunately, Amanda is continuing to develop on her journey out of Covid-19 and I hope she is restored to being 100% as soon as possible.