Long time, no see! I think I'm finally settled in enough to develop my get-back-to-running plan for this summer! The biggest thing I have realized that I need is accountability, and I have the greatest group of people to help me accomplish my goals: all of you!
I have decided that every Sunday I'll check in about my training for the previous week. It actually won't just include my running schedule or strength training routine; I will also talk about the other wellness habits I'm trying to foster to help me become the best version of myself. Sometimes, I don't think I do a good enough job of explaining all of the things I'm learning about health and wellness, and maybe it would be helpful to some of you to glean some information from what I'm trying to do for myself. That's not to say that you should copy me completely; something different works for everyone, and you should definitely follow instructions from your doctor.
At this point in my life, being healthy and well means that I am not held back physically or mentally from doing the things that make me happy. In fact, I would like to try to do things that bring me joy every single day. You only get to live each day of your life once, after all. Not everything will be easy, but I think things are supposed to be that way. How would you learn and grow otherwise?
To start, I will lay out some long term goals that I hope to achieve. Maybe I will aim to reach these goals by the time I go back to school, but I'm not really sure how possible that's going to be. Even if I don't reach them right away, these goals are things I will probably be striving towards until I achieve them.
- Get back to feeling great while running. I haven't been on my game since winter track of my senior year (February 2014). I want to run happy and run fast!
- Start doing track workouts more and get faster. Since I haven't had to with a team, I have been kind of avoiding the track. I think putting in that work makes a real difference in developing speed, and I need some help breaking out of the same pace I have been trying to push on for the past year.
- Cooking for myself more again and eating intuitively. As you read yesterday, I have struggled to get back in the kitchen and focus on food as a source of nourishment. I hope to get back in the kitchen not only to get creative for the blog, but to reconnect myself with what's on my plate and develop healthier eating habits. I don't want to have to count calories to make sure I'm getting the perfect amount of energy and satisfaction; I want to trust my body to tell me exactly what it needs. At the same time, I want to get strong so I can run and dance and do all of the other activities I like to do.
- Stretch and/or do yoga every day. I have neglected this severely, and my poor legs can feel it.
- Spend a little time each day to cultivate a meditation practice. Over the past year as I have piled more activities and projects onto my plate, I can hear all of the mental chatter building and making me even more stressed. I just need some time to be quiet and calm and focus my energy and thoughts so when I do sit down to tackle things, I can do them efficiently so I have time to do other things for fun!
- Spend less time being sedentary during the day. Since I have gotten a fitbit, I have become so much more aware of the time I actually spend doing activity each day. Just because I work out doesn't mean I live an entirely active lifestyle. Since I now work in an office, I would like to get on my feet every hour.
So in order to start reaching towards these goals, here's what my plan is for the week:
- Well I don't think I will actually be running this week, because my legs kind of died on me last week. It's because I haven't prioritized strength training, and my body just can't take the load I'm trying to put onto it right now. This week, I will go to the gym every morning and rotate through workouts to strengthen my legs, core, and upper body. Also, I will spend time stretching/rolling afterwards and at night before I go to bed.
- When I get up in the morning, I won't look at my phone first thing. I will drink some water and think about my intention for the day. Even if I can only manage it for 5 minutes, I will try to clear my mind and just be for a little while.
- When I need to eat, I will step away from what I'm doing otherwise for 20 minutes and prepare and enjoy my food with my full attention (and prepare things in advance if I have to).
- Remember (or maybe even set a reminder) to get up every hour! Last week at work, I actually tried to do some jumping jacks, high knees, and butt kicks each time I went to the bathroom. (I do it when there's no one else in there so I don't feel silly!)
- At least an hour before I go to bed, I'll turn off all of my technology or put it away so I can decompress and relax to have a good night of sleep. I can spend that time stretching, rolling, doing yoga, meditating, or reading. I hope to get to bed between 10 p.m. and 11 p.m., because I was once told nothing good ever happens after 11, and I think that's true.
So, how does that sound to all of you? I'm excited for this new approach, and I hope it helps me feel like I'm living a more balanced life and achieve the goals I have in mind. Thank you so much for helping me along this journey!
As a reward, I will provide you with more adorable dog photos as I take them! Here are some from City Dog Rescue's adoption event at Wylie Wagg yesterday! Check out citydogsrescue.org for more information about these dogs and the other animals they have up for adoption!
Also, as a non-wellness goal that I'm working on, I really want to improve my food staging and photography skills as well as my photography skills in general! I don't think I have done too bad so far, but I want you to see pictures of my recipes that look delicious and appealing so you'll definitely want to make them yourself! Just as a note for how I hope to improve the content coming through here going forward :).