Bundesen decided to live healthy two years ago, when her physicians recommended a much-needed back surgery. It would have been her second back surgery, and she’s the first to admit how badly she didn’t want to go under the knife again, fix her back again, or spend a considerable amount of time recovering—again.
So she put her back condition front and center, and searched for alternative treatments that might physically resolve her spinal issues, add a healthy element to her lifestyle and ultimately prevent surgical procedure. Rather than a second operation, Bundesen opted to swim.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, swimming is the third-largest sport among Americans. It also presents myriad mental and physical health benefits; water therapy helps people improve conditions including arthritis, fibromyalgia, peripheral neuropathy, heart disease, back problems and more.
Bundesen cleared her plan with her doctor before taking to the pool. After months of her all new—and, at times, arduous—routine, Bundesen strengthened her back and swam her way out of surgery. She saved her time and money, and developed a learned sense of accomplishment. “I’m proud to say that I don’t need back surgery anymore,” Bundesen said.
When it started, Bundesen swam five times per week. Over time, she added aerobics, cardio, weight training and walking to her regimen; she enjoys taking her son and their two dogs to the park, something she does regularly. “It ensures that I’m feeling my best,” Bundesen says of her consistent exercise. “I want to feel my best all the time.” She still swims twice each week, as part of her exercise routine.
Bundesen also has hypertension, due to a small heart condition—something she addresses with a daily prescription drug. Her healthy diet and active lifestyle help her control the condition, nearly ignoring it completely. “I actually forget I have it sometimes,” says Bundesen of her heart condition. Like her back, Bundesen was able to put hypertension behind her. She continues to achieve balance between health, work, and family. Through her actions alone, she inspires others to pursue healthy alternatives, wholesome decisions and strict regimens that lead to happy, wholesome lives.