What the Health: Part 1

Sometimes, when I tell people I’m into health, they get a surprised look on their face.

Okay, I get it. I’m not fit enough to run a marathon and I get winded after carrying my groceries up a flight of stairs.

Then I just laugh a little bit and let them know, in the kindest way possible, that they have a misconception about what health is. In reality, it’s about balance.  There is so much more to being healthy than being this super in shape person who only eats kale.

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Autumn Goodman via Unsplash

If you’re anything like me, you’re wondering why the heck I have this authority to talk to you about health. I’m going to be upfront: I’m just a normal person, a self-proclaimed expert at balancing.

I graduated from my undergrad program in May  2017 & now I’m a nurse in an ICU in the Midwest. I see a lot of people who could learn about how to balance things in their life.

There’s a great interview with Mindy Kaling I was watching the other day where she’s talking about running and makes a comment that it takes a lot of effort to look like a normal, chubby woman. But that’s the great part. I’m not a health nut, I definitely enjoy donuts. But I’m also at the gym on a regular basis.

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Me on a hike last summer in the Adirondack Mountains

I love this quote from the World Health Organization, “Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”

It’s a state of being- not a character trait or a body type.

 

I was not healthy in college. I mean, I tried to be healthy, but I had very little will power. I was SO involved: student council, the senior banquet committee, small groups, and student leadership. All that and normal classes! When was I supposed to go to the gym?

 

Does anyone else feel that way? We try to balance eating pizza for three meals in a row with maybe trying to find something green. Or we’ll go to the gym if we’re doing really well at procrastinating.

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Most of my meals looked like this!

I knew when I graduated that I was going to need to change something. In college, even if you don’t go to the gym- you’re walking all the time. You at least have veggies there as an option if you really wanted them. And you have a built-in community of peers around you.

I had the looming fear of all the advice that was telling me that I was going to become this insane and sedentary person.

PSA: I hate cooking, working out, and talking about my feelings- all very normal things that healthy people do.

My current life mantra is: I’m in a constant state of self-improvement, but I don’t beat myself up over it.

 

So let’s dive in to Part 1, shall we?

 

The first thing that comes to mind when you think healthy is usually working out.  And I promise I hate it more than you.

Here are some tips & tricks that I’ve uncovered!

  • It’s okay if you can’t afford a gym membership!
    • Scope out YMCA memberships [you could get a family membership with your pals]
    • Donation-based classes are available in some bigger cities such as New York and LA
    • Check out as many free-trials as you can! [I’ve been to so many Cycle Bar classes without even paying for one.]
    • YouTube has AMAZING tutorials. You can find one that is just your speed with minimal (or no) equipment.
    • A lot of jobs will have a discount program or at least a small gym in house.
  • Group exercise classes are FUN
    • If you hate exercising, sometimes the added pressure of some people around you helps give you that boost.
  • Try to get active at work.
    • Walk for 10 minutes at least every hour.
    • Ask for a standing desk if appropriate (maybe not if you’re a fireman or someone who tests the structural integrity of chairs).
  • Workout straight from work.
    • Pack your clothes on the way to work.
    • Do not make eye contact with your bed. Or you’ll never leave.
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NeONBRAND via Unsplash

Find what works for you! Maybe you’re a runner, maybe you like the elliptical. I prefer to run inside, but some people can’t stand it.

 

Try out a few things before settling on your jam! Let me know what you find!

 

Go work it out!