JUST FOR THE HEALTH OF IT: Maintaining discipline, and knowing when to take a break

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First Posted: 7/15/2013

This past weekend I turned 41. I’m not quite sure how I feel about it, but what I am certain of is how thankful I am for every day that comes my way. I feel blessed for what I have, not for superficial reasons, but because of my loving family and friends.

Birthdays have a way of putting things into perspective. I’m a thinker. I always analyze things, perhaps a bit too much. It keeps me on track and allows me to clearly see my life, to appreciate where I’ve been and to look forward to where I’m headed. Spending time in contemplation allows me to blueprint my goals and helps me follow a path, instead of taking a random, less thought-out approach.

My goals aren’t always “super goals;” sometimes they are as simple as getting in my two workouts per week or even making sure I drink enough water throughout the day. By being task-orientated it allows me to feel a sense of accomplishment. This catapults me into my next set of goals and helps me maintain discipline and stay motivated during my downtime.

I still work two jobs. I have my Monday through Friday 9-to-5 gig and spend early mornings, nights and weekends at the gym, my true passion. I still haven’t figured out the balance I’m striving for, but I’m working at it week by week.

Getting burned out with work can put things into a downward spiral – like your workouts and eating habits, and I know this firsthand. I try to keep things in check, reminding myself to reel things back in if I feel myself slipping away from my normal routine. For me, it’s mentally and physically important to stray for a bit, usually a month or so this time of year. I still get in 2 to 3 workouts a week and I eat decently, but my workouts have been less intense and I satisfied my sweet tooth more than usual. Now it’s time to get back on track!

Luckily, I never feel at my best when I’m “on a break” so I’m always anxious to get back to my regular routine of workouts and meal prep. As I look ahead to this upcoming year I will continue to learn, I will continue to analyze my strengths and weaknesses and I will try to continue to set aside time to work on myself. I will also learn to separate when it’s grind time, prime time and unwind time.