I often say that healthy living is a journey not a destination. You don’t just change your diet, start exercising, lose weight and then put your feet up, that’s why I call healthy living a practice, as in it has to be practised every day to make a difference. As we grow and our lives change, our health will change too and we might need to change our approach or get back to basics to continue to be our happiest, healthiest selves.
I’ve come a long way from the person I was 7 years ago when I decided enough was enough and I was going to lose weight. I’ve had my ups and downs and now as a mother, my life and health looks very different.
I said in my 2015 and 2016 goals posts last week, that I felt like my health and wellbeing goals didn’t quite materialise. I feel like part of this is because at the start of 2015 I still didn’t appreciate how different my life would continue to be with a baby. I had grand plans to get back to fitness and lose weight, but in the end, all I could manage health-wise was keeping myself going through sleep depravation and illnesses! Add into that moving in with our parents while we wait to get into our new home and my routine was shot to bits.
But with a new year comes a fresh start and the ability to look back over 2015 objectively. Reflecting on things is something I do with clients because we really need to make sure we learn from where things didn’t go quite right, and then plan ahead to make sure those areas are addressed.
The things I really want to focus on now health-wise include:
Boost my immune system
I came down with some nasty viruses last year and even ended up with cracked ribs twice due to coughing. I know it’s normal to get poorly sometimes and I’m definitely being exposed to more viruses via Finley being at nursery, but they’ve hit me very hard and I’m bloody sick of it! I know that things like sleep, rest and eating better come into this, so as well as some extra supplements I need to focus on those things too.
Prioritise sleep more
I’ve totally accepted that Finley just isn’t a great sleeper, I can generally cope unless we have a few bad nights in a row. Last year was tough because I didn’t accept or ask for enough help. Now James is taking Fin in the mornings on weekends which means I can have a lie in. That’s making a huge difference already! I’m also starting to have afternoon naps with Finley when I can.
Last year I was the excuse queen when it came to working out. I scraped through my Great North Run training and did some metafit classes but overall it was very sporadic. Exercise makes me feel so good as it gives me energy and makes me feel better about myself, so I know it has to be prioritised by stopping the excuses (I know that sounds like I’m being quite hard on myself, but I really was slacking!) and recognising the huge positive impact it has on my wellbeing.
I can be quite an intense person in that I’m type A goal getting, motivated and ambitious, which has its pros but most definitely has its cons as well. I do find it hard to really relax and turn off sometimes and I know that my underlying stress levels are high. Now my aim is to make sure I make time for those activities that fill me up and recharge my batteries. I’ve made a commitment to myself to go to a yoga class at least once a month, to have dates with James and family activities, to take long baths and see my girlfriends whenever I can.
Figure out a new healthy life
My overarching issue last year was that I was comparing my new self to my old self. I am not the twenty something child-free woman I was! My life looks vastly different and there’s no way I can possibly do the same as what I used to do around my health and wellbeing. Now I need to figure out a new balance of what I need to keep myself happy and healthy in amongst being the best mother I can be to Finley, the best wife, daughter, sister and friend and running my business.
Ah the big one. I’ve gone backwards and forwards with this goal for a while. I actually love my body, I don’t hate it at all, but as I said in The Truth About Losing Weight, you can still love your body and want to lose weight. I think it’s because I know I’m not the healthiest I can be right now and that the bit of extra weight I’m carrying isn’t helping. Now I’ve made the decision I’m monitoring my weight with the scales once a week and the fit of my clothes, I have a lovely pair of jeans I’d like to fit in comfortably! I’ll never go down the route of excessive weight loss I did before, I know what size is achievable, and most importantly maintainable for me now.
What areas of your health and wellbeing are you focusing on now?