Monday, February 16, 2009

Reconnecting with my Body - An Introduction

I've never been a health-nut. I've never been an athlete. I've been on healthy eating and exercise binges on and off for the last ten years. Leading up to my wedding, I worked out and ate decently pretty consistently. It's been all down-hill since then.

I'm not 18 any more - I can't eat what I want, sleep very little, not work out, and still look and feel okay. Since the wedding, I've taken appalling care of myself. Really, I'm not exaggerating. Yes, I know I'm in the "newlywed contentment" phase, but that's not excuse for being completely unhealthy.

I live a high stress lifestyle, and I'm coupling that with little to no exercise, a diet filled with fats and carbs, and no focused way of managing or alleviating stress. I've put on the pounds, I'm tired, and it's taking a toll on me both physically and mentally.

It's time to make a change.

Let me be clear. I'm not looking to lose weight here - although that wouldn't be a bad thing - I'm looking to make small, step-by-step changes to enhance my quality of life both physically and mentally. After all, I've got a wonderful husband, family and friends I love, beautiful pets, a lovely home, and a good job - why shouldn't I look and feel great about my body as well?

By documenting my progress in this blog for the whole world to see (well, you know, all of YOU to see at least) I figured it would help cement my goals a little more, and hold me accountable. I'll be working on several, small changes at a time. Too often, I set out with huge lofty goals and set myself up for failure - not this time!

This week's steps to reconnecting with my body:

1) Substitute coffee for herbal and fruit teas.

I never even used to like coffee! Now I drink it every morning, and periodically throughout the day leaving me feeling dehydrated and with a headache. While I don't need to completely eradicate it from my diet, I'd prefer to drink tea instead. Still a little caffeine when I feel I need it, but with many more antioxidants.

2) Drink water.

It's not uncommon for me to go through an entire day without a sip of water. I'm serious.

3) Begin exploring local yoga studios.

I used to be such a yoga nerd! I first discovered it in college, and used it primarily for relaxation. After college, I focused more on the physical benefits of yoga practice - increased flexibility, better posture, good digestion, and tension release. I can't believe I've been off the mat for so long, and am itching to get back. I think it will really help me physically, and help focus my mind as well.

So there you have it, we'll see how this goes. Do feel free to comment with any words of wisdom, or ideas for "next-steps." I looking forward to making my already great life even greater! : )


Alison said...
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Alison said...

I'm with you on the tea - I started drinking tea every morning instead of coffee...much better! I still treat myself to a good Biggby coffee about once a week and it's much more enjoyable that way.

Try to eat more veggies/fruit with every meal - they'll fill you up more so you won't eat as much of the protein or carbs.

I also try to keep healthy snacks in my desk at work - fruit cups, dried fruit, trail mix. That way when I get a bit hungry or just want to munch on something I don't have to wait until I am starved or have to eat some other junk :-)

Joanne said...

I do the same thing - my desk is loaded with good snacks. I just discovered 100 cal packs of Craisins! Yum! I actually do really well with eating throughout the day at work -- it's when I get home that the problems present themselves! Ha!