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Running on Fumes

There will come a day (hell, days) in your fitness journey where you have to admit you’re running on fumes. It’s that point where life and all of her grand chaos have placed every type of stress possible on your shoulders. When work, home, and everything in between collide, you’re left wondering what has to stay and what can go so that you can find some semblance of normalcy. Often times in the chaos, the first things to go is the great attention to detail we’ve been giving our health and fitness. We start grabbing quicker, unhealthier food; we start putting the gym second to last; we start sleeping less, meditating less, affirming ourselves far less. And before you realize what has happened, you’ve fallen right back in to all the old habits you’ve worked to stay away from. You might think I’m heading in to an accusatory ‘scold you’ tone, but it’s just the opposite. I want to say it’s OKAY. Forgive yourself and allow yourself to be human. It’s okay to recognize how often our priorities and obligations take precedence over our self-care, BUT when you realize THAT is what’s happening, you have a responsibility to yourself, and your well-being, to put yourself first.

To dig a bit deeper, we have to recognize that for so long, we have put ourselves and our wants/needs to the back burner so that everything else going on in our lives is handled before we see fit to take care of ourselves. It is important to remember that you have very little to offer when you’re running on fumes. It’s hard to be present and accounted for in the lives of others when you aren’t present and accounted for in your own life. Studies show that a lack of balanced eating, lack of proper rest, and lack of exercise all contribute to depression and other mental health concerns. There is added benefit in taking care of yourself first when you feel like you’re running on fumes. I’ve been under a ton of work stress lately. And in the midst of getting ready for the holidays in this stressful, non-stop, ‘Can I Breath?’ ass period in my life, I decided to put MYSELF first. I opted to sleep 7-8 hours, because the work will be there when I get up in the morning. I opted to enjoy a long soak in a hot bath, because I deserve a moment to breathe and feel at one with myself. I opted to continue to cook at home vs. eating out, because spending money to gain back the weight I spent money to lose is ridiculous. And I opted to get to the gym at least 4 days out of the week, because I deserve some alone time to meditate with my thoughts and sweat it out. I can honestly say that taking care of myself during stressful periods of my life has made it so much easier to cope and rebound. On this journey, I keep finding that putting yourself first makes it easier to be healthy, happy, and present, even in times of chaos.


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