I’m tired of starting these posts remarking how it has been awhile. hopefully I won’t have to anymore, because things are different now, but… let’s just get to it, hmm?
I have been working through a lot of deep thoughts about my wellness, my WHY (which I have written a lot about, over the years, as something to guide our wellness journeys), and freedom. Hopefully I can get all that edited to share with you soon. Right now it’s 4500 or so words entirely in stream of consciousness.
So much has changed recently, y’all, and I am so excited to share it with you, and, hopefully, by the end of the year, with more people, in the form of my first book! I have no idea what that’s gonna look like, but, it’s coming, in some shape or form.
First, a confession: for most of the time since I had my big mental/emotional breakthrough in June, I have let my physical wellness be a lower priority than pushing through these mental/emotional barriers. This meant inconsistent food, exercise, rest, and general self care. I had periods of making effort, but they were sporadic, and that isn’t gonna getcha anywhere. So, while my Word of 2020 is Boldness, My wellness word is consistency.
Let’s get to the check in:
Nutrition: the short and simple version here is that I am working to balance all I have learned from IE with some intentionality about eating foods that serve my body- and that I enjoy!- instead of a more lackadaisical approach, because I am tired of being stuck. SO much more on all that coming soon in a separate essay. I am tracking my food in MFP for a few reasons, including awareness, being able to observe relationships between what I am eating and how I feel physically and emotionally, workout performance, my period regularity, and, not least, shifting my body composition. I don’t have rules as such, but am focusing on whole foods, mostly non starchy, eating a few more starches on days I have a hard ride. I am not restricting anything too closely, but am trying to keep carbs under 150g on high carb days still, and aiming for 150g of protein every day, or as often as is easily achievable. I’m basically plugging in what I plan to eat each day and making sure it’s enough, and especially enough of the right stuff to fuel me for that day. I am still having a glass of wine on date night, maybe some dark chocolate, and taco and BBQ nights aren’t going anywhere. I’m only a few days into this renewed tension, so I can’t say much yet, other than I have a slight “sugar/carb flu”, where my head hurts a bit and I feel a little foggy. I’m sure I will have a lot of thoughts next week on how the changes are making me feel.
Rest: In general, I have been doing so much better with this over the past month. Bedtime is getting more consistent, getting up early is getting generally easier, and my recovery numbers are veeeery slowly improving on my WHOOP. I am also making myself have “down time” every single day, regardless on what my to-do list looks like. I want to get allll the things done, but I know I will never function on the level I want to be, or even close, if I drive myself into the ground in the process of trying to get there. None of this is new, I am just doing better at noting and respecting my own needs. Today I am VERY tired, so, other than this post, my Morning Pages, some bible study, and a very short recovery ride and stretch later, I am doing nothing but recover today. I plan to watch a show, maybe crochet, and maybe even snooze a bit this afternoon.
Exercise: I am keeping it simple with strength (currently HIITMAX Strong45) 5x a week, yoga in some form every day, 2 “real” and 3 low impact rides a week. It’s a bit exhausting right now, because I am still getting back into the habit of working out after being extremely inconsistent for the last quarter of last year. It’s hard to rebuild and respect my need for rest at the same time! I am already getting stronger, though, and I am SO excited to see that increase even more. Scott got me TRX rings to use for bodyweight rows, so I have great hope that my first pull up is closeer than ever! My goal for this week in this area is to finish strong and be ready to tackle next week’s workouts on Monday, so that when I start the second half of the program a week later, I will notice improvements in all areas of my performance. My reward for finishing STRONG45 at the end of February will be a set of 20lb dumbbells and an EZcurl bar to help take me to the next level.
Self care: I am getting more consistent with my beauty routines and making time to take showers. It’s almost embarrassing to write that like it’s an achievement, but, I really lost myself in a lot of ways for awhile, and it is still difficult for me to make sure to do things that used to be habit. Hopefully over the next week or two I will get to the point where I am taking a bath twice a week for my muscles and to relax. Aside from the physical, I am doing really well at building a soul care routine daily, and that is making a big difference. I know that once I get it dialed in, and make it happen on weekends too, it will be even better.
Body image/Love: I want to start including this, because it’s a struggle, and I want to do better. I’m going to be totally honest here, but even when how I’m seeing things is on the negative side, I am going to find something to celebrate.
This week I feel nervous that all the intention I am putting into this isn’t going to pay off in feeling or looking better. All my pants and leggings, and even my tops are tight. I can rationally tell myself that some of it is because I just had my period, and more is because my muscles are sore and retaining water. Some of it is because I gained some weight over the fall, but I cannot change that now, and a lot of good stuff happened during that time. So, gotta look forward. But, if I am honest, I’m still bummed and afraid to hope. I want to feel like my body is mine, and and not a side effect of all the trauma and struggle I have undergone the past five years.
I am choosing to celebrate that over the past week I have gone from being able to do sets of 3 on my pull up rings to sets of five, even though the last one is always SO hard! I am choosing to celebrate that I am stepping in the right direction in caring for this body and loving it. I am celebrating that it has been strong enough to carry me through this hard season, and and will be better nourished and cared for in this season to come.
On my horizon (Soon, but not sure when); Friend dates, massages, time outside the house to write undistracted, and more. I am SO excited by how my wellness is improving, and am both committing to and praying for consistency in all these things to bring me healing, freedom, and so much more!