Matching Habits to Values

Getting back into the swing of things after a holiday and a longer break is tough. Granted I needed that break more than I even knew. I feel like life has been a whirlwind of graduating, moving, immediately starting a new job and commuting four hours a day, moving again, and exploring a new city. My free weekends have been filled with travel to see my parents, visit my sister, or return to Vermont. It's been great, but it's been anything but restful. When I get caught up in the moment and am exhausted and busy it's so much harder for me to follow healthy habits. I cook less, I eat out more, I'm in situations that involve alcohol more often, and o exercise less. Anyone out there feel me on this (cue hand raise). After four days of eating copious amounts of pie and Thanksgiving food (we have two Thanksgivings) I just felt blah. Sure I wasn't feeling energized or all that great prior, but I also wasn't very intuitive with my eating over break. It was a turning point for me. I want to feel healthy and energized. 

So what do I do? First, I want to be more present in the moment and for me that means slowing down, breathing, and trying to relax the anxiety that comes with settling into a new job and a new place. I joined a yoga studio with the hopes of going once, maybe twice a week. If anything to simple set my breathing back to a normal pace and to appreciate my body. I'm also trying to listen to upbeat music when I leave work to help me focus on the positives rather than worry about things (I'm a worrier at heart). It also helps for me to talk to my parents. I'm a person who needs to talk things through out loud, I like feedback and struggle with working things out inside my head. My parents are wonderful support and listen to me day in and day out ( luckily they're both retired).

I also want to nourish my body so that I have energy and feel ready to tackle the day. This may mean avoiding certain foods that upset my stomach (I made a dish with lentils and onions this week...probably won't make again). It also looks like more fruit and vegetables, whole grains, and lean or vegetarian protein. I made two meals this week for lunch and dinner. Breakfasts have been a crunchy peanut butter and jelly sandwich or peanut butter oatmeal. Snacks have been fruit and nuts.

On the exercise front, I feel able to handle anything that comes my way when I've committed to moving more. Over the summer I was lucky if I worked out on weekends because that four hour commute was a killer. Lately I've been exercising three days a week. My goal is to get up to five days. And this doesn't mean high intensity every day. My goal is one day of yoga, two days of cardio (running or spin), and two days of lifting. So far this week I've done one long run (5ish miles) and upper body lifting with 15 minutes of cardio. In and out workout sessions are my jam, I don't want to spend forever at the gym. Luckily I have a roommate who has similar goals and will workout with me.

This isn't about weight loss for me. It's about hitting a point where I realized I didn't like how I was feeling. Sure some days I'll still choose to come home, like in bed, and watch Grey's Anatomy. But I don't want this to be the rule but rather the exception. I want to move my body most days and nurture myself with nutritious foods most days. You better believe I'll be enjoying a glass of wine (or two) and going out to eat on occasion. But after so so so much wine and food over Thanksgiving I realized that my habits weren't matching my values and how I want to feel and how I want to live.