Why I Focus on Wellness, Not Just Fitness

Good Afternoon Fellow New Runners!

Today’s question in the fitness blog challenge was to describe my most embarrassing fitness story.  I am happy to say I don’t have one.  Honestly!  Believe me, it is just as shocking to me as I am quite the klutz so the fact that I don’t have an embarrassing trip or a story of me running into a post or a tree is pretty surprising.

Instead I am going to skip to the next question which was why did I get into fitness?  This is a great question, mainly because there wasn’t any one reason.  When I was very young I was a swimmer, swimming competitively in both individual and team events.  I really loved the group atmosphere and I loved swimming.  I didn’t do any sports from about 5th grade until high school. This little break gave me the opportunity to miss sports, miss the camaraderie and miss those wonderful endorphins following through my body.  It is because of this break that I continue to make fitness a part of my daily routine.

In high school, I became a cheerleader and as part of cheering I found that stretching and weight training was something I needed in addition to cardio.  Luckily for me, my parents had a family membership at our local YMCA and I would go there almost every day.  I tried everything, weights, cardio equipment, aerobics classes.  Funny enough I tried everything except running.  I would talk to other patrons and the instructors and learned a lot about fitness and nutrition.  I continued this in college when I worked at our campus wellness center.  My job was focused on students wellness, overall health.  I like this approach so much better as it looks at nutrition and fitness as part of a overall healthy lifestyle, rather than the only two focus points.

As an adult, I find it is harder to incorporate any type of wellness into my daily life.  There are so many other needs: work, home, family, kids, friends.   You have to make taking care of YOU a priority, this is the crux of the wellness philosophy.  This means setting aside the time to go for that run, ensuring that you buy healthy fruits and vegetables for your meals or finding the time for that overdue massage (yep, that is wellness!).

Obviously, this is so much easier said than done.  The drive thru at McDonalds is way easier to do than preparing a full meal for the family.  It is much more tempting to sleep in than to get up and work out.  That Fettuccine Alfredo dish smells much more delicious than this grilled chicken with vegetables.  This is where wellness comes in.  We can all have cheat days.  Heck, we can all have a cheat week if we want, so long as we eat properly the rest of the time.  Sleep in if you need, but make sure you go for that run the other 4 days of the week.  Treat yourself to fast food, but for the next two weeks, it is healthy, nutritious meals only.

wellness

I am so happy that I have made fitness and wellness part of my daily routine.  Yes, I do stray from time to time, but I try to eat as healthily as I can so I CAN stray and not feel guilty.

Enjoy the Run!

Yvonne

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