I swear there is a correlation between the two things in the title I chose for this post.
As I approach my 27th year of flying through the universe on this tiny rock we call home I am doing some reflective thinking, mostly things to do with my health this year. My day of birth is on Friday. Thus far, I have been super fortunate to not have any serious issues. Minor injuries due to running. Over the past year I have maintained my weight and found the balance between leisurely binging when I mentally need to & being healthy 85% of the time.
Up until this past year– constantly thinking about what I am putting into my body but not actually implementing what I know will help me has been a struggle. I still wouldn’t say that these feelings have completely disappeared but like I said I have found a sort of balance. Balance is key. Without it you end up with feelings of guilt and you body shame yourself. This is will ultimately lead to a mental breakdown.
I was at my best physically during college when I lived in San Francisco, 4-6 years ago. Holy Crap– speaking of reflective thoughts, how has it already been that long?! When i moved home I gained weight and lost track of my goals. For anyone who hasn’t experienced transitioning from college life to “the real world”… it is a bitch to say the least. This is true for me, maybe not true for every one else. It took me a solid two years to pick myself up and get back to where I wanted to be mentally and physically. One of the biggest factors that made the transition of getting back to my goal self a challenge was working an 8-5 office job where you are meant to sit most of the day. It is unbelievable how drained you are after nine hours of coworkers, computers and sitting at a desk.
Now, cue Christmas 2016– here enters my Fitbit. The gift I never even knew that I wanted or needed. I am going to be real blunt here and say my initial thoughts about activity trackers and what I thought of them before I owned one. I literally thought, activity trackers are for fat people. Fat people have them to make people think they’re out there being fit and health. Cringe. Not only was I wrong– but now I would like to formally apologize for my close minded assumption. I’m sorry.
My new activity tracker began to give me the cold hard facts about just how active I was actually being. It initially had me feeling like I was living a lie and it forced me to be held accountable for my health. During a 9 hour shift at work I was only walking an average 3,000 steps. Unbelievable. With this new knowledge about myself– I started to occasionally walk on my lunch break, I started to walk my dogs when I got home from work and on the weekend, I started to consistently run again, I signed up for two half marathons and a marathon, I tried to beat my step count every day. When I got this new job that allows me to walk around more — I get up and walk as much as possible– I find any excuse to walk more. It has become a full blown competition with myself. I now average 6000-7000 steps a day before my work outs.
It didn’t stop there either. Now that I could see how active I actually was and how many calories on average I was burning, it motivated me to be once again conscious of my diet. You know what they say, you can’t out exercise a bad diet. Why would I go through all of this effort if I was just going to put trash and excess calories into my body along the way? It was my stepping stone into making the most healthy home cooked meals in this past year than I have made in the entire past 26 years. I began to listen to and read a lot of health advice. I begin to utilize portion control. Portion control is a super key thing, I could write a whole post on the power of that alone. I was back to being consistent and living my best life. & I am still here doing the damn thing.
My 26th year of life has been my most mentally and physically healthy year to date. I think I owe my best year of living — 2017 — my 26th year of life — not only to myself for sticking to my mental health commitments I set for myself privately, but honestly I also owe a big part of it to my Fitbit. I think this is the first time I am actually taking the time to appreciate technology.
Having a birthday in January definitely helps with feeling rejuvenated and being ready to set goals at the beginning of the year, along with being able to easily reflect on a year in its entirety. I am very hopefully for 2018 and being 27 years old. Now, let’s fuck shit up.
*A note about the pictures I posted in this blog. They are one month apart. I usually never take before and after pictures. But after our Mexico vacation I was feeling like a piece of shit from over indulging. I knew after the vacation I was going to come home and work my butt off (training for a marathon) and give myself the proper fuel to thrive, so I documented it. I am too damn proud of the short progress to not share.