Instead of a 2018 New Years resolution, I decided to do a separate “mini” goal every month of the year. You can read all 12 of my monthly goals here. I’ve had fun working on something small and short-term every month, but I’ve mostly enjoyed experiencing the results and figuring out what I want to work on long-term. I’m also learning what I can release after a month of trying it and just say, “that wasn’t for me.”
In January, I meditated every day (read here.)
In February, I kept fresh flowers in the house every day (read here.)
And in March, I did a workout every day.
So, I did a workout almost every single day that I planned.
(There were 4 days in the middle of the month when I was letting my foot heal from a minor injury, which was some inflammation in my second metatarsal bone due to running in old running shoes. I bought new shoes and rested my foot for a few days, and I was good as new the next week. So I rested from any workout, even walking, on those 4 days.)
I’m training for a half marathon, so lots of those workouts were outdoor runs by Lady Bird Lake! I also did 2 yoga classes, 14 barre classes, and a week of loooong walks (when I was in NYC I would sometimes walk 12 miles a day, so I counted that as my workout.)
This is what I thought I would learn:
I thought that I would get into the swing of it and realize how strong I felt, and by the end of the month I’d be inspired to do a workout every day, or at least 5-6 days a week.
But in reality, this is what I learned from working out every day in March:
I’m not enjoying intensity in my life as much as I used to.
Those of you who know me in real life (my family, close friends, college aquantainces, etc) probably known this, but I’ve always been a goal-oriented, intense, stick-with-it sort of person. I’ve always thrived in competitive situations (especially when I can be competitive with myself), and that’s why I thought a month of working out every day would be something I’d enjoy.
And even though I feel strong right now (my abs feel really sturdy from all the barre, and my cardio seems to be in a good place from the miles of running), I don’t feel as happy or healthy as I thought I would feel from finishing this goal.
I think I’m shifting to a more intuitive lifestyle where I’ll embrace workouts that I do based on what I’m feeling, not what I feel I’m “supposed” to do.
I’ve noticed the same thing in my eating: when I limit myself in what I can eat (like cutting out dairy, or gluten, or anything else completely), I don’t feel as happy or healthy as when I just trust myself to eat what I want. Maybe I could call this a “whole” approach to living. I might be able to force myself to not eat a certain thing (or this month, in my case, I forced myself to do a workout every day), but if I’m not feeling truly happy from that decision, it’s not going to ultimately make me into my healthiest self.
(Sometimes I’m typing these things out, and I think did everyone else figure this out about 10 years ahead of me? Haha! I’m 27, and this seems like a pretty simple idea. But I’m just figuring it out for myself.)
That was it for March. I discovered something really important about myself, so the effort of working out every day was worthwhile. I didn’t get the result I thought I would, but I that makes the conclusion even more exciting!
For April, I’m writing a letter each day. I’m heading out to get some new stationary now (I haven’t shopped for stationary in years!), and I’m excited for the simplicity of this goal.