lifestyle balance


When I began my new job this year (teacher associate), I was very excited and happy to have a job that’s one step closer to teaching. After being there two months however, I found myself bored on a daily basis itching to do more, well, teaching. I was growing impatient, and even discussing the option of looking for full time classroom positions for right now instead of waiting until next fall.

A few weeks ago, I made the decision to slow down, and use the extra time that I have been given to “fix” some things in my own life–to gain better habits (flossing, anyone?) and get rid of some not-so-good ones. After some time, it turned into a bigger change–I wanted to do more things in my life than just go to work and watch tv, and I wanted to find a better version of myself. I was tired of feeling like I’m 45-50 when I’m only 25. So I did the hardest thing there was to do–I started trying to change things. 

I started just doing little things–flossing once a day, eating a salad at lunch, going to the gym. No high expectations, but I had two main goals: start trying, and more importantly, keep trying. 

When I began, I took a balance assessment to see which areas of my life were out of whack. I was very honest with myself, and found that my physical health is very out of sync with the rest of my life. I felt like overall, I was happy and positive about pretty much all aspects of my life—except that one. I will also add that I am by no means obese, and am generally sitting at the high end of my BMI range. But my physical habits were leading me no where great.

Since I started, I have grown to flossing at least once a day, often twice. I found that I really like kale, and it’s an easy lunch to make. I made macaroni and cheese and instead of wolfing down 2 bowls of it, I had a 1/2cup and a sandwich. I had ice cream from a restaurant yesterday, and only ate half (the rest is in my freezer). 

I started at fitness forum with the females in my family (we all complain about the same things) and so far we’ve had fun sharing tips and tricks as well as complaints. One day I stumbled upon a wellness heath center website out of Denver, CO., and they were having a monthly contest for a free wellness package (consultation and program). I entered my name, and I won! I felt like since I had started thinking positively about wellness, that I had opened the door for this to happen to me right now. 

I spent all of last week tracking my food (ugh brutal in its honesty) and really saw how much junk I was eating compared to healthy stuff. And last week was a “good” week! I made sure not to get too upset over it, and instead looked at all of the good changes I had made in my eating habits (portion sizes, etc.) and vowed to keep trying. And then I went to the gym.

My overall desire when talking to the wellness consultant I am working with was that I didn’t want to completely do a 180 in my life–I love my husband, my general career area, and pizza, and didn’t want to all of a sudden become a yogi living without any clothes on a mountain. No offense if you do that, more power to you, but it’s not for me! I wanted to shift my life in a more positive direction, add more yoga and veggies, but still eat chili during the Bears game on Sundays. I just don’t want to eat so much of it. I wanted to be in control and aware of what I put in my mouth no matter where I am or what the circumstances are (work’s Friday pot lucks, out with friends, vacation, family christmas party) because there is no such thing as a normal day. There’s always things that affect how and what we eat (for example, this week there was the election-I had no work and stayed up late to watch it; then I was sick for two days and had friends over on Friday). And it goes like that every day. I wanted to become a better version of myself but still be me.

As of today, I am four weeks from where I started. While it’s been a completely messy roller coaster of trying and succeeding & trying and failing, I have not stopped trying. And it’s with great pride that I can look at my calendar and see that I exercised for multiple days this week. I made a few good food choices, both in what and how much I ate. I bought a pedometer and wear it all day to keep track of how much I move. One step at a time.

You know what? I think that’s pretty darn awesome. Pat on the back for me.


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