When Life Shuts You Down (damage control included)

I haven’t worked out in 4 weeks, or if I did workout, it wasn’t a full session.

I haven’t cooked or meal prepped for 3 weeks and my dishwasher didn’t get ran once.

And I ate two miniature birthday cakes over the past 2 weeks.

The cake I ate this week.
The miniature cake….

My life got crazy; my house is sold and I have to move in 30 days.  My long time boyfriend and I are going our separate ways…..(some of you are familiar with him, as I referenced his expertise a lot).  Much of what I knew and loved in my simple but comfortable life is now gone.

So what did I do to overcome this devastation and hurt?  I slept.  Well, I went to work and then slept when I got home.  Sleep is great in the sense that you temporarily can’t feel any emotional pain AND your brain can turn off for a bit.  My brain doesn’t turn off in general, so throw some negative life events at it and WHOAH.  Give me some melatonin and let’s put me outta my misery!

What happened to my fitness level and body composition over the past month?  NOTHING.

Yes, that’s right.  I actually am still as strong as I was (tested out some strict pressing and chin ups yesterday and was pleasantly surprised).  I likely lost a few pounds because I wasn’t taking part in my mindless pleasureful snacking (because I was asleep a lot and not in a pleasure-zone).

Whew, I look the same! Damage averted.

Although this “life lesson” is not what I wanted to happen, I want to share it with you.  I’m sharing it only because I want you to know is that as much as some of you panic when you miss a workout or have ONE bad week  — when you think that you will gain fat, lose strength and ruin all of your goals — that is nonsense.  Not even the fitness professionals we look up to can keep up the perfect routine and diet 365 days per year.  You have to allow yourself to go through life events, good and bad.  Live, relax and simply allow your fitness/food routine to complement your life, not be your life.

I care very much about my health but my emotions and energy levels were drained.  And that was okay.  I had a faint voice saying “Get up!  Go unleash on a workout, do it!  Go throw some weights around!”  But that voice was too faint.  I’m not that person.  That’s not how I deal with being upset.

However, I’m back at it now, getting into a new groove!

A Few Helpful Things To Do When You Are Drained and Off-Course:

  1. Take your supplements.  My meals (if you can call them that) were lacking nutritional value, so I made an effort to take my multi-vitamins, fish oil and powdered greens (in almond milk).
  2. Get sleep.  Yes, I slept a lot.  But if you have a fighting chance to make it to work, take care of your kids, pack your home for a move, etc….you need real, 8 hours a night sleep.  Not just that “I’m so upset I’m going to lay on the couch after work” sleep.
  3. Walk.  If you can’t visualize killing a high intensity conditioning session or going for a PR in your deadlift, at least try to get in some walking.
  4. Yoga/stretch.  It was nice to get a good stretch on and work on some mobility.  Even if it was only for 5 or 10 minutes.

I write with a message to give yourself permission to go through stress and adversity with or without your fitness and diet regime in tact.  I want you to be fine with the fact that you missed a class or workout.  Be fine with the fact that you ate some less than nutritious foods.  As long as you don’t forever lose site of your health routine, do what you are feeling during adverse times, not what you THINK you should be doing.

Life is definitely a journey — I feel fortunate for each and every day — so I really want to get back to it.  It’s been an eventful past 4 weeks but life can’t be a ball of fun everyday — it definitely is a box of chocolates though.  You never know what you’re gonna get!  (Couldn’t help myself).

Enjoy the journey and have fun when you can!
Enjoy the journey and have fun when you can!

Hoping you all have a ball of fun on most days —— cheers.  xoxo

~Melissa

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