7 things I’ve learned from the past 7 months

Hi friends! I hope you’re having a lovely morning. I’ve been cranking away on a post about tracking your cycle and how to adjust workout intensity throughout the month, and it’s taking me a bit longer than expected. Stay tuned for that one later this week. This week has been a good one so far. I took a super sweaty hot yoga class last night and we took Caro to the dog park! We haven’t been to the dog park in years – Bella was attacked at one in San Diego so we haven’t gone back – but Caroline is SO docile that she doesn’t try to compete for Alpha Dog status among the other dogs. We figured it would perk her up since she’s seemed kind of down lately. She had such a great time smelling the other dogs, trotting around, and rolling over so everyone would rub her belly.

Today’s post is kind of on the random side, and an attempt to focus on some of the rare bright spots in the past 7 months. It can be so easy to focus on the negatives, like lost opportunities, canceled events, and the inability to go places or travel freely. I feel like everyone I talk to lately feels the exact same way: overwhelmed, with a heavy heart, and just so dang exhausted. I’m really looking forward to when we come out the other side of all of this, but in the meantime, I thought I’d share some of the things I’ve either learned or was reminded of other the past 7 months. I’d love to hear anything you’ve learned or habits you’ve created that you want to continue in the future.

1. Coffee from home is better than from the coffee shop. After having coffee purely from home for months, I have to say that I prefer it now! Don’t get me wrong, I still go crazy over a pumpkin spice latte from Starbucks, but as far as regular ol’ decaf coffee goes, I love the one I make here at home. It has collagen, almond milk, and vanilla monk fruit and isn’t nearly as bitter as coffee shop coffee.

2. The kids can entertain themselves. When the world first turned upside down, I was like, “What the heck am I going to do to entertain these kiddos?” I was basically their cruise director, scheduling online activities, time outside, and planning something new and fun each day. I even kept a list so that we would constantly be doing new things. Around day 32, I burned out. I just didn’t have it in me, was running out of ideas, and was finally like, “Just go play with dolls or spray each other with the hose.” And they LOVED IT. The girls can easily play for hours now, drag out the art supply box, or work on a puzzle. I still plan fun things to do as a family because we enjoy it and it gives us something to look forward to, but it was freeing to let go of the pressure to constantly entertain. 

3. “Time is non-refundable, so spend it wisely.” This whole situation and losing Bella recently have been a huge reality check for me to make the most out of time and savor all of the good moments. I know I soaked up every moment I had with Bella and still feel like I would do anything to have 5 more minutes with her.

I’ve cut back on mindlessly scrolling on my phone and reading things that make me feel badly, when I could be enjoying time with the girls, reading a book I enjoy, or listening to a podcast. During the past 7 months, I started saying, “Yes” more often. Yes to baking random 3-layer cakes, jumping off cliffs into slide rock, extra books before bed, late-night movies, and endless hide and seek games because we finally have time to do all of these things. Before March hit, we had something every single day of the week after school and Sunday was the only day sans activities. I can’t wait for the girls to get back into the things they love, but it’s going to be less frequent with some built-in down time.

4. Health and relationships are all that really matter. At the end of the day, that’s really all you have. It’s not about how many *things* you acquire, how many work-related accomplishments you’ve achieved, or how much money you have saved. Focus on preserving your health and the quality of relationships. I’m thankful for the family members and friends I’ve been able to stay connected with this entire time even when we’re not physically together.

5. A whole new level of appreciation for the jobs people do to keep our society running. I’ve always been thankful to the delivery truck drivers, grocery store clerks, mail carriers, TEACHERS (omg teachers), medical professionals, first responders, etc. This whole thing has taken it to an entirely new level.

6. I don’t really need a gym to get in an awesome workout. While I definitely miss the motivational gym atmosphere – they’re finally open here again in Tucson but I haven’t made it back yet with childcare, distance learning, etc- I’ve been able to do my thang with the equipment we have at home. I’m looking into adding a treadmill to the collection; let me know if you have one you love!

7. Nature is truly healing. Time outside, pool time, and our family walks have been a gamchanger during this whole thing.

So, tell me friends: what’s something you learned or were reminded of during the past 7 months? Any habits you want to keep with you? I’m definitely going to try and stick to at least one walk a day.

xo

Gina

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26 Comments

  1. Michelle on September 15, 2020 at 8:07 am

    We splurged on the Peloton Tread+. It is amazing. I can’t believe how quiet & comfortable it is to use!

    • Fitnessista on September 15, 2020 at 3:31 pm

      ok that’s the one i have my eye on.. i might just have to pull the trigger

  2. Angie on September 15, 2020 at 11:07 am

    Love this post and agree with all of your points! #2 had me smiling/laughing with tears in my eyes…so great to see the kids just PLAY ON THEIR OWN!!!

    • Fitnessista on September 15, 2020 at 3:31 pm

      yes! they’ve been able to just be kids instead of carted around to various activities all day and turns out they like it 😉

  3. Katie M Sommerfeldt on September 15, 2020 at 11:12 am

    So much YES to this entire post! I’m actually enjoying coffee at home as well 🙂 I started doing the “mushroom” coffee to help my adrenals a bit & I’m loving it! (I would love to hear your favorite teas/ drinks if you’d want to share since you’re on the decaf train too!) One thing I’m loving… Facetime calls! <3

    • Fitnessista on September 15, 2020 at 3:31 pm

      yes the mushroom coffee is so good! i can definitely share some of my faves 🙂
      amen to the FaceTime calls, too. those have been so much fun during this time

  4. Crystal on September 15, 2020 at 12:32 pm

    I agree with these, especially #4. I love my job, but have realized that it’s not everything, and it’s not the end of the world of something doesn’t get done on time or 100% correctly, and that has actually lowered my stress level a lot! Lol basically I’ve learned to be okay with occasional mediocrity. Anyway, great post 🙂

    • Fitnessista on September 15, 2020 at 3:30 pm

      i’ve learned to be ok with frequent mediocrity lol

  5. Katie on September 15, 2020 at 2:43 pm

    Ah I love this! I’ve learned that sticking to a very rigid schedule wasn’t serving me anymore, and that working out at home actually works better for me than the gym at this point in my life since it provides so much flexibility in timing. I also realized that there is a difference between being informed and obsessively reading the news. I stopped visiting my news apps multiple times per day (I will often go for a week or more now), and it has significantly improved my mental health.

    • Fitnessista on September 15, 2020 at 3:30 pm

      yes! i couldn’t agree more! initially, i was watching SO much news and reading everything i could and it literally made me feel sick to my stomach. i’ve cut way way back and am so much happier

  6. Katie on September 15, 2020 at 4:33 pm

    This is exactly the list I would have written as well!

    • Fitnessista on September 16, 2020 at 6:23 pm

      <3 <3

  7. lauren on September 15, 2020 at 4:58 pm

    Sounds ridiculous, but i’m curious to know what type of coffee you use and what ratio of scoop to cup (unless you have a keurig or similar)! I’ve been messing up my coffee left and right and really miss it !

    • Fitnessista on September 16, 2020 at 6:23 pm

      i use the decaf peru coffee from whole foods! (i use to love the decaf bulletproof but haven’t been able to find it)
      i use 10 oz coffee, 1 scoop of collagen, a generous bit of almond milk and 5 drops of monk fruit

  8. Leah on September 15, 2020 at 5:28 pm

    Yes to all of this! I really hope my kids can one day look back on this crazy time with fond memories— memories of family meals every day, playing games, hours in the backyard playing together, endless hikes and walks. While I can’t wait for life to resume a more normal semblance, I hope we take the good things from this time and carry them on.

    • Fitnessista on September 16, 2020 at 6:23 pm

      i really hope so, too <3

  9. coco on September 15, 2020 at 5:34 pm

    it was soul searching period for me, I cut down social time (not in my phone), learned to practice gratitude and meditation, be mindful, deep work, reading 1-2 books a week, and started bullet journal Life changing indeed.

    • Fitnessista on September 16, 2020 at 6:22 pm

      i’ve been wanting to bullet journal! did you buy a specific journal for that or do you freestyle it?

  10. Tracy on September 15, 2020 at 5:54 pm

    I’ve learned that I love to workout at home! We’ve added to our equipment and I feel like I get a great workout and so much more efficiently. I miss the social side of the gym but I feel like I can focus so much better without any distractions. I’ve had fun working out with my daughter and husband, too <3

    • Fitnessista on September 16, 2020 at 6:22 pm

      ahh i love that! i feel like i can focus pretty well here at home too

  11. Reenie on September 16, 2020 at 11:23 am

    How’s Caro doing without Belle? 🙁

    • Fitnessista on September 16, 2020 at 6:22 pm

      she seems depressed without her buddy. 🙁 bella was the one to force her to run around and beg for food with her and now she sleeps a lot. we’ve taken her to the park and on walks but she’s definitely in a bit of a funk

      • Reenie on September 17, 2020 at 10:48 am

        Awwww! xo

  12. Jessie R on September 16, 2020 at 8:52 pm

    Great list! #3, 4, & 7 especially! Downtime is so important and relationships are everything. <3

  13. Amanda on September 18, 2020 at 7:13 pm

    This truly resonated with me. More baking, more life, more fun, less filler. I’m a long time reader and I’m so sorry about Bella. You gave her a long full life. She was lucky to have you.

    • Fitnessista on September 19, 2020 at 12:23 am

      thank you, friend. i appreciate it so much

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