‘I’m not sure….what day is it again?’ That’s how most of my conversations (and thoughts) went this week. More than just not being recovered from the holidays, I seem to have adapted to the work Monday, Tuesday, vacation, work friday, off again, holiday schedule — which doesn’t seem to be catching on as an on-going national trend, unfortunately.
We’re going strong, heading in to week 2 of The Whole Damn Thing, and while I’m clear through the sugar quitting phase, I was dragging. I could tell you what day of the challenge I’m on, but ask me for a day of the week and I’ve got nothing.
On Tuesday, instead of going to the 7am MAD class, I slept in until 7:30. I worked all day mostly in a fog, and with a considerable pace deficiency. By 6:30 that night I was fading fast; low on energy, low on general capacity, and I continued with what was my constant assumption for the day — I’m just hungry. I’m definitely guilty of getting lost in work for hours, and lunch between 11 or 3:30 can be pretty normal for me, so throw in The Whole Damn Thing, and the probability that I would not be eating regularly enough seemed like a definite possibility….only that wasn’t it.
It wasn’t until after I had dinner (and then another big post-dinner snack to make extra sure) that I realized that perhaps food wasn’t my issue. I had eaten — all day really; I ate great meals, clean, balanced, and nourishing meals that are right in line with some of the best I could have managed (including a killer smoothie in the vitamix to power me through the mid-afternoon hour). But what I didn’t think about, and what can often get buried behind the focus of fueling with food, is making sure I’ve gotten enough rest to even be able to function on good fuel.
I’ve been burning it at both ends. Even though I took ‘off from work’ for the majority of the last two weeks, that was just off from my full-time job and didn’t really account for the fact that all of the ‘free’ time that comes with vacation was then immediately allotted to the other businesses, strategic planning, and the million little things that I haven’t been able to get to with all of my working and traveling full time. While this is pretty normal for me and I actually function better on a tight timeline with lots of moving parts, I needed just a little extra recovery time.
With The Whole Damn thing, with MAD, and just life in general, it’s great to have focus and commitment, but forfeiting that recovery time amidst craziness was a major miss for me. So, I’ve tried to adjust – where I can. Here are a few habits I’ve been trying to revive (or in some cases form) to help bring a little balance and rest into my life:
1) Sit down to eat. I’ve gotten into the habit of rushing meals, eating at my desk…standing… and taking zero time to just de-load. Making this change is so critical in really creating a little quality time for my mind to slow down and my body to re-set.
2) Drink Water. Seriously, our brains are something like 70% water, right? We need water, so the 6 hour IV of coffee that I was in the habit of living on had to be adjusted to stop the midday headaches, keep me fully functioning, and most of all have me hydrated enough to truly handle our intervals.
3) No phone in bed. This is a big one, and something I’ve heard a number of our coaches talking about as well. From causing a divide in relationships, having late-night chime/text/call wake ups, to even the risks the constant screen time plays on your eye balls and sleep habits, the phone has got to go.
4) Sleep. Seriously, sounds stupid, but I can’t tell you how much I’ve been benefitting from shutting EVERYTHING down before 10 and letting my body rest in full. It’s too easy for me to keep burning the candle into the middle of the night, unproductively shifting between everything, unable to keep my wheels from turning when I’m trying to fall asleep.
5) 7th hour stretch. I work predominantly from home — for all my jobs. While I’m definitely luck that one of them includes owning fitness businesses with unlimited opportunities to sweat, I spend at LEAST 11 hours a day sitting working for my ‘real’ job and trying to crank out a few things each day for the businesses. It’s a thankless position, and even though I do try to stand for portions of the work day, there’s nothing quite as necessary as a little childs pose and ad-hoc office-floor stretching to mitigate some of the stress. Maybe this should really be about breathing…so here you go…
6) Keep Breathing. Pretty self explanatory, and pretty important. Just do it.
7) Take time for food prep. Regardless of if you’re eating clean or not (though clean eating DOES help regulate hormones, sleep patterns…stress…) make sure you are taking time to prepare meals, and have good healthy food available when you need it. There’s nothing worse than literally having nothing good to feed yourself, causing you either to cave and eat processed garbage, or to venture out into the world in a full out hunger-panic — which isn’t safe for anyone.
None of these things are life-altering discoveries, or new information at all…in fact, most of these I used to do as a habit in my younger years when things seemed less serious, but these days I sometimes just need the reminder. All in all, this week has been laborious, but necessary in getting back on track and re-balancing life. Today is day 8 for us on the challenge and I have to say, outside of the complete smash back into reality, it’s been a pretty smooth ride.