I wrote this blog originally for publication on The Guerreiras.
We crave structure in life because it makes us feel comfortable and secure. Knowing what lies ahead allows us to plan and set ourselves up for success. But when something breaks our structure, like travelling, illness, or injury, it can be hard to get back into the groove of daily life. I had this experience recently after a short trip to Chicago. I loved visiting my friends and had a blast, but it also took me away from my comfort zone for a few days.
I was eating things that are definitely not on my Sensei’s diet plan – oops. I know I’m happier and feeling my best when I’m eating right and staying active, but at the same time, I found myself dreading getting back into my routine. Here are some things that got me past my post-vacation funk and back in happy/healthy mode again.
- Remember that breaks and set backs are temporary. Unless you’re constantly traveling or dealing with a long-term injury, know that the “dread” feeling will go away after you get back into your routine. Make a decision to get back into that mode and stick with it. It’s no longer an option: it’s about taking care of yourself and fueling your body properly.
- Blast the tunes. I have a really hard time getting out of bed in the morning. The day after I came home from Chicago, I was exhausted, but I knew I had to wake up early the next day and cook my healthy food to set myself up for success. I’m always in a better mood after I put on some upbeat music – so as soon as I dragged myself out of bed, I pumped up the jams. Sure my neighbors maybe didn’t appreciate that at 6 a.m., but it helped me wake up and motivated me to get the food preparation done.
- Hide the goodies. It’s not that you can’t ever have them – but if you’re getting back into your routine, you can’t have them right now. They’re just going to derail you. I hide food on myself all the time to keep me on track because if it’s out of sight, it’s out of my mind. I’m pretty short so I hide things in cabinets way up high, or in drawers I don’t open very much. I put healthy food in places that are easier for me to see, like fruit on the table. That way I’m not thinking about bad stuff when I can grab a banana or make a smoothie.
- Re-stock the refrigerator. Go to the grocery store, even if it is late and you’re tired from your trip, at least just to get you through the next day or two. Get all the healthy food that you usually eat, so there is no excuse to eat anything else that might keep you off track.
- Get in a really good workout. “Hey gym/mat/workout DVD, it’s been a while, how have you been?” Make an appointment to get reacquainted with each other and do not bail. You will feel better after.