Author Topic: Healthy Choices 2020  (Read 2107 times)

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Healthy Choices 2020
« on: January 05, 2020, 01:59:52 PM »
Here it is, 2020's edition of the shame-free, judgment-free space for discussing your personal wellness goals and the incremental steps you're taking to meet them.

I want this thread to be comfortable for as many people as possible. With that in mind, I have two boundaries to suggest:

No unsolicited advice--please ask for ideas if you want advice and hold your tongue (er, keyboard?) if no one asked
No calorie counts or specific weight talk--there's usually a weight loss thread for that kind of thing

What do y'all think of those? Are there other boundaries I've missed? What are you working on in 2020--better sleep, more consistent exercise, more nourishing food choices?

ysette9

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2020, 02:25:10 PM »
Good thread. I hadnít thought of formally making a goal for the year but this is a good way to frame it. I need to exercise every day or nearly so for my mental health maintenance regime.

chaskavitch

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2020, 04:09:02 PM »
I'm trying out some meditation apps to attempt to increase my productivity at work and my attentiveness to my kids at home.  Right now I'm starting with Smiling Mind, but does anyone have recommendations?

Also, I am trying to floss every night :) 

Our 9 month old is still bad at sleeping, so my sleep is completely borked right now and I feel terrible, but these are things I have control over.

I've already posted in the Fitness thread with specific health things, so I'll leave those alone.

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2020, 04:30:07 PM »
@chaskavitch, I don't but I hope someone else does. I was watching a YouTube video with my husband the other day where this guy was summing up all his "challenge" videos--quitting sugar for 30 days, quitting the internet for 30 days, etc. And the one that he said was hands-down the most valuable and the one thing he was still doing, was meditating. So I've kinda had it in the back of my mind to try it.

Sorry about the sleep :-(.

Good thread. I hadnít thought of formally making a goal for the year but this is a good way to frame it. I need to exercise every day or nearly so for my mental health maintenance regime.

Me, too!

SquashingDebt

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2020, 08:19:49 PM »
For meditation apps, I did a paid year of Headspace and then a paid year of Meditation Studio.  This year (today actually!) I signed up for Headspace again.  I like how they have courses you can progress through, and some good incentives (streak tracking, total number of hours meditated tracking).

It's $70 for the year, but for me that's money well spent.

Luz

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2020, 08:29:01 PM »
I've been trying to make a few things habit, but am spinning my wheels. I've been intending on making these changes for years.

2020 health goals:
-drink at least 1/2 gallon of water per day

-wear sunscreen on my hands and get lip balm with spf

-floss after every meal (I'm genetically predisposed to gum disease, so my dental hygienist suggested more frequent flossings- it's also cheap, takes very little time, and makes my teeth look much better)

-somehow remind myself throughout the day to improve my posture: shoulders back, tailbone tucked (I'd love feedback on how to go about remembering this, because how I hold my body is so subconscious at present)

-consistently (most days of the month) go to bed at least 7.5 hours, but ideally 8 hours before I have to wake up

-think of 1 big and 2 small things I'm grateful for while doing some other daily routine task (like showering or brushing teeth)

I'll post again with possible strategies for how I'm going to accomplish these things.

MaybeBabyMustache

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #6 on: January 05, 2020, 08:38:10 PM »
Goals for me for the year:
-I wear sunblock on my face regularly, but want to wear sunblock whenever I'm working out outside. I had a mole removed on my leg, and it was a really not fun process. I want to avoid future occurrences.
-Meditation. I'm a dabbler, and want to make it more consistent.
-Reduce alcohol consumption. I'm a Friday-Sunday, 2 glasses of wine kind of a drinker. So, nothing crazy. However, when I travel for work, or am on vacation, I also have wine. It's more of a calorie & financial consideration, but am interested in just reducing my consumption overall in 2020.
-Reduce stress. (See meditation above). Work out consistently, which like @ysette9 helps me maintain my mental & physical health

I have a few more: using lotion, flossing my teeth EVERY day, etc.

oneday

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #7 on: January 05, 2020, 08:46:43 PM »
This year for me is about strength & general fitness habit building and as part of that I'm in a Jan challenge.  I'll come back to this once that challenge is over.  I found the thread helpful last year.

Frugal Lizard

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #8 on: January 05, 2020, 08:50:09 PM »
I am just going to follow along - I am recovering from PTSD symptoms so I am doing my healing (and grieving) work as I am able. 

Tess

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #9 on: January 06, 2020, 09:44:10 AM »
* Go to dermatologist to have moles checked
* yoga 2-3 x/week
* run 3x/week
* walk 1-2 x/week
* 12 step meetings (AA and/or Al Anon) 3x/week
* eat meat free 3x/week
* lower sugar consumption (one small treat/day)
* be mindful about eating (eat when hungry not to change the way I feel)
* avoid all recreational shopping for 2020 (joined the "buy NO clothes in 2020" group 
* stay clean and sober
* read at least 26 books

ysette9

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #10 on: January 06, 2020, 10:45:03 AM »
* Go to dermatologist to have moles checked
* yoga 2-3 x/week
* run 3x/week
* walk 1-2 x/week
* 12 step meetings (AA and/or Al Anon) 3x/week
* eat meat free 3x/week
* lower sugar consumption (one small treat/day)
* be mindful about eating (eat when hungry not to change the way I feel)
* avoid all recreational shopping for 2020 (joined the "buy NO clothes in 2020" group 
* stay clean and sober
* read at least 26 books
This are great goals. It also seems like you are signing yourself up for a lot and our self control is limited. Your not overextending yourself, right?

chaskavitch

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #11 on: January 06, 2020, 10:49:17 AM »
* Go to dermatologist to have moles checked
* yoga 2-3 x/week
* run 3x/week
* walk 1-2 x/week
* 12 step meetings (AA and/or Al Anon) 3x/week
* eat meat free 3x/week
* lower sugar consumption (one small treat/day)
* be mindful about eating (eat when hungry not to change the way I feel)
* avoid all recreational shopping for 2020 (joined the "buy NO clothes in 2020" group 
* stay clean and sober
* read at least 26 books

Thanks for reminding me that I need to go see a dermatologist for a baseline exam!  I'm turning 35 this year and it seems like a very good idea - I'm fair skinned and have had many, many sunburns over my life.

Raenia

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #12 on: January 07, 2020, 09:37:18 AM »
My goals for January are:
- Meditate every day, at least 5 minutes.  I've been doing 15 min most days.
- Establish a bedtime routine to get more/better sleep.  So far I had DH pick our lights-out time and our screens-off time, because I'm more likely to succeed if I have his buy-in.  I'm also going to move my evening reading from the bed to the living room, to improve sleep hygiene.

Continuing goal from last year:
- Drink more water.  I'm up to about 80oz per day, and that feels pretty good.  I'm pretty good about it on work days, less so on weekends.

Other goals for the year:
- Starting in Feb, take a walk every day.
- Catch up on medical appointments: primary care, gyno, dentist, vision, and dermatologist

Frugal Lizard

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #13 on: January 07, 2020, 11:00:54 AM »
Some of the recommendations spurred me to make a whack of appointments.  Dental appointment was at 11:30 and I am going back Thursday am for replacing two fillings that appear to be "leaking".  Family doc is Monday morning for a referral to dermatologist.  Eye doc for updated prescriptions is next Thursday.


ysette9

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #14 on: January 07, 2020, 11:37:11 AM »
Some of the recommendations spurred me to make a whack of appointments.  Dental appointment was at 11:30 and I am going back Thursday am for replacing two fillings that appear to be "leaking".  Family doc is Monday morning for a referral to dermatologist.  Eye doc for updated prescriptions is next Thursday.
You are so good. I need to do exactly the same

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #15 on: January 07, 2020, 01:15:20 PM »
Some of the recommendations spurred me to make a whack of appointments.  Dental appointment was at 11:30 and I am going back Thursday am for replacing two fillings that appear to be "leaking".  Family doc is Monday morning for a referral to dermatologist.  Eye doc for updated prescriptions is next Thursday.

Well done!

Does anyone have suggestions for a (preferably) free, low-barrier-to-entry way to start meditating? I don't have a lot of intellectual energy to devote to learning how to do a new thing but I think it would be helpful.

I have been owning my "problematic" feelings lately and asking for the support I need! I am very fortunate to have a partner who is good with feelings. He just hugs me. Even if I was doing something and I'm like, can you put your computer away and come hug me for a while because something sad happened in the book I'm reading and now I have Feelings?

All this talk of appointments is reminding me I need to make an appointment with a NEW dentist. I am in a new part of town and the first new dentist I tried, I didn't care for, so... on to the next!

mspym

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #16 on: January 07, 2020, 01:42:09 PM »
Signing up for this year! I am practising
- using my train commute to meditate (to work) and practise Spanish (from work)
- continue to reduce my animal product consumption, specifically dairy which my body HATES and which I am soooooo close to completely removing. I am not going Full Vegan just yet - I find that any 100% goal triggers a lot of anxiety/perfectionism - but we have enormously reduced our meat consumption over the last few months and I am loving it.
- keep doing the mobility exercises my physio gave me for my sprained ankle with the goal of getting back to running.

ysette9

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #17 on: January 07, 2020, 01:45:15 PM »
Some of the recommendations spurred me to make a whack of appointments.  Dental appointment was at 11:30 and I am going back Thursday am for replacing two fillings that appear to be "leaking".  Family doc is Monday morning for a referral to dermatologist.  Eye doc for updated prescriptions is next Thursday.

Well done!

Does anyone have suggestions for a (preferably) free, low-barrier-to-entry way to start meditating? I don't have a lot of intellectual energy to devote to learning how to do a new thing but I think it would be helpful.

I have been owning my "problematic" feelings lately and asking for the support I need! I am very fortunate to have a partner who is good with feelings. He just hugs me. Even if I was doing something and I'm like, can you put your computer away and come hug me for a while because something sad happened in the book I'm reading and now I have Feelings?

All this talk of appointments is reminding me I need to make an appointment with a NEW dentist. I am in a new part of town and the first new dentist I tried, I didn't care for, so... on to the next!
Iím no expert. I did YouTube guided meditation videos that I would just listen to with my eyes closed in bed. People have recommended various apps in the past but naturally I canít remember the names of any of them.

mspym

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #18 on: January 07, 2020, 02:46:50 PM »
Re meditation @Frugal Lizard
- I like the free Smiling Mind ones but if you find the Australian accent off-putting then David Cain (Raptitude) has a Camp Calm program which I have tried and found both his voice and approach excellent. Specific program I tried was his Camp Calm Relax, which was about meditating on bodily sensation to calm down the mind.

Tris Prior

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #19 on: January 08, 2020, 08:48:46 AM »
Ahhh, new thread!

My goals are:

- gym 2x a week
- Doing a no-grains January. Though I've already fallen off the wagon a couple times. With oatmeal, because the egg casserole I made was disgusting and slimy. I guess it could be worse.
- Booze only on weekends.
- Get health stuff sorted. I have to do a $3k minimum spend by end of March to get a big airline miles card bonus; I am ashamed that this has convinced me to finally make a dentist appointment (I need MANY thousands of dollars of work that I've been putting off because $) and an eye doctor appointment (same; I need progressives and I don't know anyone who's paid less than $800 for them even with insurance).
- I also need to find and go to a primary care doctor. I don't have one. Yes, I KNOW. I do have a gyno and was just there last week, so it's not like I'm getting zero medical care.... but, yeah. I'm in my late 40s and shit is probably going to start breaking.

My therapist says I should meditate, but when I try it makes me panic. My gym has yoga nidra classes, which I've gone to now a couple of times in hopes that would ease me into regular meditation, they're about half yoga and half guided meditation. But it is so ice cold in the studio that I couldn't concentrate on relaxing and quieting my mind. Too busy shivering. Under 2 blankets. Maybe I will bundle up to a ridiculous level and try it again? Dunno.

Moonwaves

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #20 on: January 09, 2020, 02:53:42 AM »
...I find that any 100% goal triggers a lot of anxiety/perfectionism...
I can identify. And I have the annoying kind of perfectionism that doesn't lead me to doing something until it is perfect but rather the kind that tells me I'll never be able to do it perfectly so why even bother trying. Working on that. I also have the perverse kind of brain that often treats setting a goal as a reason to rebel and immediately do everything except what will lead to that goal being achieved. As if setting a goal is daring myself to give up that target immediately. Working on that (in therapy) a lot, too.

Having said that, what I am now trying to do is not give myself goals but instead to be better about just doing things and then actually acknowledging that I'm doing them. So far this week that has meant:
- Following the organised mum method for dealing with housework - falls under healty choices for me because if my kitchen is clean the washing-up is done there is more chance I will actually cook.
- Bringing fixings for sandwiches to work for lunches (and actually having those sandwiches for lunch every day)
- Actually cooking dinner last night, even though I was tired and really didn't want to (helped by having taken something out of the freezer in the morning that I had to use or throw out)
- Moving in the office - getting up three or four times a day and doing some exercises. Only doing a very small amount, literally just something like five push-ups against the windowsill or wall but basically anything that will get me out of my chair on a regular basis.
- Arranging with the colleague who is taking a chair from me that as payment she will bring the exercise bike I just bought from another colleague. She brings the bike to me and takes away the armchair I love but just do not have space for or need.
- Signing up for the obesity clinic at my local hospital.
« Last Edit: January 09, 2020, 04:26:50 AM by Moonwaves »

Malkynn

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #21 on: January 09, 2020, 04:48:57 AM »
Some of the recommendations spurred me to make a whack of appointments.  Dental appointment was at 11:30 and I am going back Thursday am for replacing two fillings that appear to be "leaking".  Family doc is Monday morning for a referral to dermatologist.  Eye doc for updated prescriptions is next Thursday.

Well done!

Does anyone have suggestions for a (preferably) free, low-barrier-to-entry way to start meditating? I don't have a lot of intellectual energy to devote to learning how to do a new thing but I think it would be helpful.

I have been owning my "problematic" feelings lately and asking for the support I need! I am very fortunate to have a partner who is good with feelings. He just hugs me. Even if I was doing something and I'm like, can you put your computer away and come hug me for a while because something sad happened in the book I'm reading and now I have Feelings?

All this talk of appointments is reminding me I need to make an appointment with a NEW dentist. I am in a new part of town and the first new dentist I tried, I didn't care for, so... on to the next!

The Headspace app is a great starter for mindfulness meditation. I've gotten at least a hundred people into meditation through that app even though I don't use it myself.

Malkynn

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #22 on: January 09, 2020, 04:52:20 AM »
I've been trying to make a few things habit, but am spinning my wheels. I've been intending on making these changes for years.

2020 health goals:
-drink at least 1/2 gallon of water per day

-wear sunscreen on my hands and get lip balm with spf

-floss after every meal (I'm genetically predisposed to gum disease, so my dental hygienist suggested more frequent flossings- it's also cheap, takes very little time, and makes my teeth look much better)

-somehow remind myself throughout the day to improve my posture: shoulders back, tailbone tucked (I'd love feedback on how to go about remembering this, because how I hold my body is so subconscious at present)

-consistently (most days of the month) go to bed at least 7.5 hours, but ideally 8 hours before I have to wake up

-think of 1 big and 2 small things I'm grateful for while doing some other daily routine task (like showering or brushing teeth)

I'll post again with possible strategies for how I'm going to accomplish these things.

Not for posture, but for other muscular habits, I tell my patients to find a repetitive occurence to check their body, as in every time they check the time, or every time they check their email, or whatever you do frequently all day, just take a few milliseconds to also check your posture. It will make your brain more aware of your body position.

On top of that, mindfulness is actually amazing for being aware of what your body is doing.

Lastly, Pilates is crazy for posture. When I got into Pilates, I gained a full 3/4 inch in height and I just couldn't slouch.

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #23 on: January 09, 2020, 01:46:38 PM »
@Moonwaves, she sounds a little like The Fly Lady, who I used to follow. Maybe I should get back into it for cleaning. My husband does the laundry, grocery shopping, and cooking most night (he gets off work early to be the after-school parent) but cleaning is not really his thing, so I do more of it. But the house is never cleaning enough for me :-).

I am trying to get down on added sugar and today I didn't have any sugar in my coffee! Just cream. I am not a black coffee drinker. Cream is a food, as opposed to the flavored Oreo creamer I used most of last year.

mspym

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #24 on: January 09, 2020, 02:06:52 PM »
My healthy choice for today is taking myself off to the Dr to get my inner ear infection looked at before I attempt flying with this.

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #25 on: January 09, 2020, 02:14:43 PM »
My healthy choices for this year as FIREd a person are:

- Doing a sportive activity multiple times a week. I would like to say every day, but I like to have the option to skip some days when the weather sucks. This week has been good.
- Regular yoga or meditation. I did the Palouse mindfulness 8 week course before the summer and liked it. In December I started again with yoga. I find meditation more difficult to start with. I tried a 30 minute sitting meditation recently and quit after 25 minutes.
- Get enough sleep. This is going quite well so far.
- Reading lots of books.
- Seeing friends.
- Healthy eating, but we do that practically every day. It is a habit.
« Last Edit: January 11, 2020, 08:12:11 AM by Linea_Norway »

Tess

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #26 on: January 11, 2020, 07:16:35 AM »
Report back for last week:

*2 x yoga
*2 x running
*1/2 book read
*4 x AA meeting
*no recreational shopping
*sober but took a sleep aid 1x that should be avoided going forward (gives a warm floaty feeling which is a dangerous thing for this addict/alcoholic!)

MaybeBabyMustache

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #27 on: January 11, 2020, 02:34:06 PM »
Reporting back from last week:
Goals for me for the year:
-I wear sunblock on my face regularly, but want to wear sunblock whenever I'm working out outside. I had a mole removed on my leg, and it was a really not fun process. I want to avoid future occurrences. - haven't worked out outside
-Meditation. I'm a dabbler, and want to make it more consistent. - x2
-Reduce alcohol consumption. I'm a Friday-Sunday, 2 glasses of wine kind of a drinker. So, nothing crazy. However, when I travel for work, or am on vacation, I also have wine. It's more of a calorie & financial consideration, but am interested in just reducing my consumption overall in 2020. - no week day alcohol. Had a single drink yesterday, vs my standard 2.
-Reduce stress. (See meditation above). Work out consistently, which like @ysette9 helps me maintain my mental & physical health - I ran 2x, 1 stretching workout, & 2 strength workouts

I have a few more: using lotion, flossing my teeth EVERY day, etc. - I've been using the evenings (getting off all electronics by 7:30 is another one of my goals) for a bit of self care. Taking a hot shower, using lotion (hit or miss with this one) & flossing. I have consistently flossed every day. Woohoo!

ysette9

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #28 on: January 11, 2020, 03:18:41 PM »
Good job flossing! :)

Luz

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #29 on: January 12, 2020, 08:27:55 PM »
I decided to try making 2 things on my list a habit (maybe 30-60 days) before tackling another 2.

First up:
-flossing after breakfast and lunch
-going to bed 7.5 hours before it's time to wake up

I'm going to stick my floss in the toothbrush holder as a reminder for the post-breakfast session. After lunch I do paperwork, so this week I'll look for a way to somehow attach flossing to that.

For going to bed, I've found it much easier to turn in on time if I brush/floss my teeth and wash my face earlier in the evening. If I save it for the last thing before going to sleep, it feels like such a huge task and I end up procrastinating. So this week I'll try washing my face before I read.

I'll check in with progress every week.

Tris Prior

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #30 on: January 13, 2020, 07:57:45 AM »
I consistently - I mean, EVERY night unless we are at plans outside our home - fall asleep in front of the TV. I know this isn't healthy, but I hate going to bed by myself (it makes me very anxious and then I just lie there anyway wide awake and freaking out so that's not great either). Boyfriend likes to stay up late so he never goes to bed before 12:30 or 1.

I know this habit has to change but I don't know what to do about the anxiety. I don't want to take meds for it, or to take sleeping pills. (and honestly, unless Boyfriend and our two young cats are both SILENT, even if I fell asleep in a reasonable amount of time, I'd be awakened constantly. I cannot sleep through the tiniest noise even with the white noise fan on as high as it goes. Thanks, perimenopause, for robbing me of my ability to sleep like the dead through anything!)

Has anyone broken this habit? I know part of it too is being resentful that really my body wants to be asleep at like 9 p.m. and sometimes I don't get home from work until 7. So having only 2 hours to eat dinner, tend to the cats, come down from the stress of the day, and spend a little time with my partner is very unappealing. Jobs are stupid.

Malkynn

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #31 on: January 13, 2020, 10:01:50 AM »
I consistently - I mean, EVERY night unless we are at plans outside our home - fall asleep in front of the TV. I know this isn't healthy, but I hate going to bed by myself (it makes me very anxious and then I just lie there anyway wide awake and freaking out so that's not great either). Boyfriend likes to stay up late so he never goes to bed before 12:30 or 1.

I know this habit has to change but I don't know what to do about the anxiety. I don't want to take meds for it, or to take sleeping pills. (and honestly, unless Boyfriend and our two young cats are both SILENT, even if I fell asleep in a reasonable amount of time, I'd be awakened constantly. I cannot sleep through the tiniest noise even with the white noise fan on as high as it goes. Thanks, perimenopause, for robbing me of my ability to sleep like the dead through anything!)

Has anyone broken this habit? I know part of it too is being resentful that really my body wants to be asleep at like 9 p.m. and sometimes I don't get home from work until 7. So having only 2 hours to eat dinner, tend to the cats, come down from the stress of the day, and spend a little time with my partner is very unappealing. Jobs are stupid.

I would work on tackling what it is that makes you dislike going to bed alone, and perhaps look into some mindfulness meditation and/or CBT to resolve that barrier to going to bed.

Tris Prior

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #32 on: January 13, 2020, 10:36:05 AM »


I would work on tackling what it is that makes you dislike going to bed alone, and perhaps look into some mindfulness meditation and/or CBT to resolve that barrier to going to bed.

Mostly it's that Boyfriend and I have disparate amounts of downtime/mental recharge time simply by virtue of the fact that he needs less sleep than I do, and that we don't get much couple time except on weekends because I cannot stay awake. I would like to spend time reading or watching a favorite show with him or just *talking* after work. I do not want my evenings to look like arrive home--> tend to cats --> feed self --> exercise if it is a night that I have a class at my gym --> do necessary chores and/or pack orders if I've had sales on my side business --> maybe have a brief conversation with boyfriend if time --> go immediately to bed. And that's what my evenings would need to look like. We live in a fairly small apartment, and I also feel like there's no point in going to bed super early because Boyfriend shouldn't have to tiptoe around the house or be constantly shushing the cats simply because the tiniest noise will jolt me awake. That's not his fault.

Part of it is also a sense that Something Bad will happen if I go to sleep alone. Not certain what the origin of that is. Probably worth mentioning in therapy. Meditation has never resulted in anything other than a panic attack for me; I'm not certain what I am doing wrong.

I think a lot of the problem is dreading the constant repeated wakeups in the middle of the night so, perversely, that makes me not want to go to bed and deal with yet another night of that. So I put it off until my body makes the decision for me wherever I happen to be. I have a really hard time staying asleep. Sleep meds don't tend to agree with me. We just got legal MJ in our state as of Jan. 1 and I'm told that can help so I'm thinking of giving edibles a try once all the hype calms down (currently all dispensaries are constantly out of stock and there are 4-6-hour waits in line to get anything).

Malkynn

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #33 on: January 13, 2020, 01:59:57 PM »


I would work on tackling what it is that makes you dislike going to bed alone, and perhaps look into some mindfulness meditation and/or CBT to resolve that barrier to going to bed.

Mostly it's that Boyfriend and I have disparate amounts of downtime/mental recharge time simply by virtue of the fact that he needs less sleep than I do, and that we don't get much couple time except on weekends because I cannot stay awake. I would like to spend time reading or watching a favorite show with him or just *talking* after work. I do not want my evenings to look like arrive home--> tend to cats --> feed self --> exercise if it is a night that I have a class at my gym --> do necessary chores and/or pack orders if I've had sales on my side business --> maybe have a brief conversation with boyfriend if time --> go immediately to bed. And that's what my evenings would need to look like. We live in a fairly small apartment, and I also feel like there's no point in going to bed super early because Boyfriend shouldn't have to tiptoe around the house or be constantly shushing the cats simply because the tiniest noise will jolt me awake. That's not his fault.

Part of it is also a sense that Something Bad will happen if I go to sleep alone. Not certain what the origin of that is. Probably worth mentioning in therapy. Meditation has never resulted in anything other than a panic attack for me; I'm not certain what I am doing wrong.

I think a lot of the problem is dreading the constant repeated wakeups in the middle of the night so, perversely, that makes me not want to go to bed and deal with yet another night of that. So I put it off until my body makes the decision for me wherever I happen to be. I have a really hard time staying asleep. Sleep meds don't tend to agree with me. We just got legal MJ in our state as of Jan. 1 and I'm told that can help so I'm thinking of giving edibles a try once all the hype calms down (currently all dispensaries are constantly out of stock and there are 4-6-hour waits in line to get anything).

So...what *do* you actually aim to accomplish? A middle ground between going to bed very early and staying up late until BF decides to go to bed?

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #34 on: January 13, 2020, 02:32:00 PM »
@Tris Prior, I so empathize! I have more like 3 1/2 hours between coming home and my ideal bedtime (10), at least most nights. But I have kids, and that breaks up the night. So I get in and it's immediately dinner time (shout out to the Boy for making it!), then it's time for the kids to be getting ready for bed while we do the dishes and hustle them along, then it's time to read to them, etc. Generally I get home around 6:30/6:45 and the boys are down for the night by 8:30/8:40. Not much time to spend together as a couple, work on our individual projects, etc.

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #35 on: January 13, 2020, 03:07:53 PM »

So...what *do* you actually aim to accomplish? A middle ground between going to bed very early and staying up late until BF decides to go to bed?

That's a great question! Yes, a middle ground. I think my ideal outcome would be go to bed at a reasonable hour - like, 11 or 12, I get up for work at 7, so that seems sufficient. And - the key - *sleeping through the night.* Not waking up every hour in a panic. I feel like if I solved that bit, and was getting quality sleep, maybe my body would be less likely to randomly fall asleep any time I am not moving or doing something active. Maybe that is unrealistic for a woman of my age? From what I've read this seems pretty common for perimenopausal women.

Mainly I want to stop falling asleep in front of the TV and actually be able to finish a show sometimes. Maybe the sitting is what's the problem. Maybe some light stretching or whatever instead while I am watching. Probably would help relieve stress and wind down too.

I personally kind of doubt that Boyfriend is functioning as well as he says he is on 4-5 hours sleep, but, well, it's his body and not my problem to solve. I think both of us resist going to bed because we haven't had enough downtime to decompress from our stressful jobs. He just doesn't doze off at the drop of a hat like I do.

@Tris Prior, I so empathize! I have more like 3 1/2 hours between coming home and my ideal bedtime (10), at least most nights. But I have kids, and that breaks up the night. So I get in and it's immediately dinner time (shout out to the Boy for making it!), then it's time for the kids to be getting ready for bed while we do the dishes and hustle them along, then it's time to read to them, etc. Generally I get home around 6:30/6:45 and the boys are down for the night by 8:30/8:40. Not much time to spend together as a couple, work on our individual projects, etc.

It sucks, doesn't it! And I don't even have kids! Just needy cats who need attention and playtime or else they will be partying loudly at 3 a.m., haha. Also no time to actively work on reducing stress.

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #36 on: January 14, 2020, 08:54:31 AM »
-Switching alcohol for seltzer. I've done this before, so I know it's one I have a good chance of maintaining.  My goal is to only drink alcohol socially this year (less than once a month).
-Add in exercise.  My first goal is 5 push ups a day. (I need to start super slow, time wise.)  Second goal is to add 15 minutes of cardio.  I'll probably add this after a month or two of the push ups. 
-Find a healthy and cheap (if possible) snack that I actually like eating.  Going to try raisins first, but I'd love any suggestions you have!

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #37 on: January 14, 2020, 11:20:54 AM »
Some of the recommendations spurred me to make a whack of appointments.  Dental appointment was at 11:30 and I am going back Thursday am for replacing two fillings that appear to be "leaking".  Family doc is Monday morning for a referral to dermatologist.  Eye doc for updated prescriptions is next Thursday.

Well done!

Does anyone have suggestions for a (preferably) free, low-barrier-to-entry way to start meditating? I don't have a lot of intellectual energy to devote to learning how to do a new thing but I think it would be helpful.

I have been owning my "problematic" feelings lately and asking for the support I need! I am very fortunate to have a partner who is good with feelings. He just hugs me. Even if I was doing something and I'm like, can you put your computer away and come hug me for a while because something sad happened in the book I'm reading and now I have Feelings?

All this talk of appointments is reminding me I need to make an appointment with a NEW dentist. I am in a new part of town and the first new dentist I tried, I didn't care for, so... on to the next!
same.  My husband's doc recommended a meditation app.  Looking for more recommendations.

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #38 on: January 14, 2020, 11:24:25 AM »
@mm1970 @La Bibliotecaria Feroz I've been using the app "Let's Meditate." It's free, although you can give a donation if you want. I like that they keep things fresh by adding in new meditations on a regular basis at no cost, and you can choose between male and female voices if you care.

mm1970

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #39 on: January 14, 2020, 11:26:54 AM »

So...what *do* you actually aim to accomplish? A middle ground between going to bed very early and staying up late until BF decides to go to bed?

That's a great question! Yes, a middle ground. I think my ideal outcome would be go to bed at a reasonable hour - like, 11 or 12, I get up for work at 7, so that seems sufficient. And - the key - *sleeping through the night.* Not waking up every hour in a panic. I feel like if I solved that bit, and was getting quality sleep, maybe my body would be less likely to randomly fall asleep any time I am not moving or doing something active. Maybe that is unrealistic for a woman of my age? From what I've read this seems pretty common for perimenopausal women.

Mainly I want to stop falling asleep in front of the TV and actually be able to finish a show sometimes. Maybe the sitting is what's the problem. Maybe some light stretching or whatever instead while I am watching. Probably would help relieve stress and wind down too.

I personally kind of doubt that Boyfriend is functioning as well as he says he is on 4-5 hours sleep, but, well, it's his body and not my problem to solve.
I think both of us resist going to bed because we haven't had enough downtime to decompress from our stressful jobs. He just doesn't doze off at the drop of a hat like I do.

@Tris Prior, I so empathize! I have more like 3 1/2 hours between coming home and my ideal bedtime (10), at least most nights. But I have kids, and that breaks up the night. So I get in and it's immediately dinner time (shout out to the Boy for making it!), then it's time for the kids to be getting ready for bed while we do the dishes and hustle them along, then it's time to read to them, etc. Generally I get home around 6:30/6:45 and the boys are down for the night by 8:30/8:40. Not much time to spend together as a couple, work on our individual projects, etc.

It sucks, doesn't it! And I don't even have kids! Just needy cats who need attention and playtime or else they will be partying loudly at 3 a.m., haha. Also no time to actively work on reducing stress.
I can sympathize.  I'm peri-menopausal, and I have kids, and my husband and I have vastly different schedules.  We don't talk as much as we'd like.  I basically have a schedule where I'm asleep by 9 and up by 5.  I cannot break this schedule for my own mental health.  That means my kids are awake later than I am.  My spouse goes to bed much later (11:30 ish) and gets up around 6.  I also doubt that he's functioning well on less sleep, but it's his body.

I do struggle with sleep - little things wake me up and his snoring does not help.  I use Unisom every night, which ensures that I go BACK to sleep more easily if I get up to pee or his snoring wakes me up.  I have been focusing strongly on sleep for 2-3 years - I get 8:20 on average every night (some nights 8, some nights 9), and it's been amazing.  It's totally worth it.

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #40 on: January 14, 2020, 12:26:17 PM »
I'm going to rework my goals a bit.
I thought it best to go for the low hanging fruit: flossing, sunscreen on hands, more gratitude in my day.
But I think sleep, hydration, and posture are what I want to focus on this year. I usually break my year into semesters (spring, summer, fall) and will focus on 1 thing each semester, starting with sleep.

I'm doing the 50 Books and Internet Use challenges on the MMM forum, so a focus on sleep fits in seamlessly. Logging off my computer an hour before bed gives me time to unwind by reading while still getting to bed at a decent hour.

After the toddler is in bed and on the days I'm not spending the evening out/doing something with my husband, my evening routine is: catch up with my husband, do an hour of side hustle, do an hour of surfing or projects, then 30-45 minutes of reading before it's time to sleep (at 9:30pm because I wake up at 5am).

My goal is to go to bed at 9:30pm 28 days of the month, January-April.
My strategy is 1) do my side hustle before using the computer and reading so I'm not tempted to use the latter two to procrastinate getting my work done, and 2) do my bedtime routine after I log off the computer and before I start reading, since it's infinitely easier to just close my book and go to sleep than to get out of bed and do all my day-end tasks. 
I expect that I'll get less than 28 days per month at first, but hope to get there by April. I'll check in here with the times I don't make 9:30pm to investigate what went wrong and what to do about it.

I have a good feeling about some serious forward movement this year!

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #41 on: January 14, 2020, 12:59:58 PM »
...I find that any 100% goal triggers a lot of anxiety/perfectionism...
I can identify. And I have the annoying kind of perfectionism that doesn't lead me to doing something until it is perfect but rather the kind that tells me I'll never be able to do it perfectly so why even bother trying. Working on that. I also have the perverse kind of brain that often treats setting a goal as a reason to rebel and immediately do everything except what will lead to that goal being achieved. As if setting a goal is daring myself to give up that target immediately. Working on that (in therapy) a lot, too.

Having said that, what I am now trying to do is not give myself goals but instead to be better about just doing things and then actually acknowledging that I'm doing them. So far this week that has meant:
- Following the organised mum method for dealing with housework - falls under healty choices for me because if my kitchen is clean the washing-up is done there is more chance I will actually cook.
- Bringing fixings for sandwiches to work for lunches (and actually having those sandwiches for lunch every day)
- Actually cooking dinner last night, even though I was tired and really didn't want to (helped by having taken something out of the freezer in the morning that I had to use or throw out)
- Moving in the office - getting up three or four times a day and doing some exercises. Only doing a very small amount, literally just something like five push-ups against the windowsill or wall but basically anything that will get me out of my chair on a regular basis.
- Arranging with the colleague who is taking a chair from me that as payment she will bring the exercise bike I just bought from another colleague. She brings the bike to me and takes away the armchair I love but just do not have space for or need.
- Signing up for the obesity clinic at my local hospital.

I have that second kind of perfectionism too! I have to give myself a stern talking to in order to start anything. I always wondered what the first kind would be like.
I recently read something about goals that I really liked. It was about rewording how you describe them. Goals are simply something you want for your life that you're not currently doing for whatever reason.
That works so much better for me because I have an aversion to things that feel like a task. If I know I should do it, I find reasons not to.

So in my case, I want to go to bed 7.5 hours before I get up most nights because a good night's sleep has a positive effect on everything else in my life. And I want that extra sparkle. The work in forming this habit is all about figuring out what's getting in the way of my desire and removing as many barriers as possible (like your mention of making dinner even though you didn't want to in the moment, because you had defrosted food that would otherwise go bad).

I'm finding that it's those simple moments and not the big intention I start with, that make or break a life change.

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #42 on: January 14, 2020, 05:24:32 PM »
@mm1970 @La Bibliotecaria Feroz I've been using the app "Let's Meditate." It's free, although you can give a donation if you want. I like that they keep things fresh by adding in new meditations on a regular basis at no cost, and you can choose between male and female voices if you care.

Thanks for this suggestion! Will try! I have done 2 meditations 2 days in a row so far with Headspace. Not sure yet if I like it--I think it takes more than a couple of days at 5 minutes a day to notice a difference :-).

-Switching alcohol for seltzer. I've done this before, so I know it's one I have a good chance of maintaining.  My goal is to only drink alcohol socially this year (less than once a month).
-Add in exercise.  My first goal is 5 push ups a day. (I need to start super slow, time wise.)  Second goal is to add 15 minutes of cardio.  I'll probably add this after a month or two of the push ups. 
-Find a healthy and cheap (if possible) snack that I actually like eating.  Going to try raisins first, but I'd love any suggestions you have!

My go-to is fresh fruit and cashews from Costco.

Moonwaves

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #43 on: January 15, 2020, 01:17:14 AM »
@Moonwaves, she sounds a little like The Fly Lady, who I used to follow. Maybe I should get back into it for cleaning. My husband does the laundry, grocery shopping, and cooking most night (he gets off work early to be the after-school parent) but cleaning is not really his thing, so I do more of it. But the house is never cleaning enough for me :-).
I remember reading Flylady a bit back in the day but although I liked the idea of the clean sink every evening, I never really did anything else and that's the only thing I remember of it. So it was more of a reading than a doing thing for me. That was at the start of my blogging/online life days, when I was really ramping up on finding ways to everything in an environmentally-friendly way and I remembering disliking the FL method of shining the sink, even if I appreciated the idea of it. It just put me off. The same way I wanted to love the Curly Girl book but it was all just so much more effort and product than I normally used (even though it was much less effort and product for most people).

Anyway, I was away for Sunday and Monday, came back just in time to go to an extra choir rehearsal on Monday, was in work all day yesterday and then had normal choir rehearsal after that. So, the only thing approaching housework or tidying I have done this week is to put away the dishes that I left drying on Sunday morning. But I also have only been home to sleep, so that's just the way life is. Back to it this evening.

Last Saturday my colleague brought me my new-to-me exercise bike and took away the chair and footstool that was taking up too much space in my apartment. I cleaned up the bike and just did five minutes on it on Saturday. This evening I want to do half-an-hour and then, for my cool down, I will hoover my apartment and maybe even mop the floors, too. That will catch me up on most of the TOMM stuff.

Thanks for the meditation app recommendations from me, too. I tried headspace once when it first came out but found the guy's voice (more his accent, I think) really irritating, which was not very relaxing. So, I should probably try out a bunch of them until I find one with a voice I like.

This morning, I very nearly gave in to the thought of going to the canteen and getting a big plate of chips for lunch but at the last minute grabbed my last portion of slow cooker chicken and chorizo with lentils out of the fridge. So that will be lunch today. And now, I'm going to get up and do my five fake push-ups, and some leg movements.

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #44 on: January 15, 2020, 01:55:51 AM »
...
I recently read something about goals that I really liked. It was about rewording how you describe them. Goals are simply something you want for your life that you're not currently doing for whatever reason.
That works so much better for me because I have an aversion to things that feel like a task. If I know I should do it, I find reasons not to.

So in my case, I want to go to bed 7.5 hours before I get up most nights because a good night's sleep has a positive effect on everything else in my life. And I want that extra sparkle. The work in forming this habit is all about figuring out what's getting in the way of my desire and removing as many barriers as possible (like your mention of making dinner even though you didn't want to in the moment, because you had defrosted food that would otherwise go bad).

I'm finding that it's those simple moments and not the big intention I start with, that make or break a life change.
My current therapist has been really good in this respect, either through her insights or helping me to reach my own. It really is incredible how wording something differently can make a huge difference sometimes. My latest big revelation was realising how much I was internally rebelling against the idea that I might need help (this was in relation specifically to housework and hiring a cleaner) but when I reframed it to myself as needing some support, I began to see it in an entirely different light. Just a different word for essentially the same thing but it happened to click in this time and place for me. Words can be so powerful.

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #45 on: January 15, 2020, 07:00:28 AM »
...
I recently read something about goals that I really liked. It was about rewording how you describe them. Goals are simply something you want for your life that you're not currently doing for whatever reason.
That works so much better for me because I have an aversion to things that feel like a task. If I know I should do it, I find reasons not to.

So in my case, I want to go to bed 7.5 hours before I get up most nights because a good night's sleep has a positive effect on everything else in my life. And I want that extra sparkle. The work in forming this habit is all about figuring out what's getting in the way of my desire and removing as many barriers as possible (like your mention of making dinner even though you didn't want to in the moment, because you had defrosted food that would otherwise go bad).

I'm finding that it's those simple moments and not the big intention I start with, that make or break a life change.
My current therapist has been really good in this respect, either through her insights or helping me to reach my own. It really is incredible how wording something differently can make a huge difference sometimes. My latest big revelation was realising how much I was internally rebelling against the idea that I might need help (this was in relation specifically to housework and hiring a cleaner) but when I reframed it to myself as needing some support, I began to see it in an entirely different light. Just a different word for essentially the same thing but it happened to click in this time and place for me. Words can be so powerful.
Hmmm.  Pondering this.  It once occurred to me looking at the GD bathroom sink full of toothpaste spats again - I had cleaned the sink three times in 30 hours- That my kids were brushing their teeth a lot.  Toothpaste splats in a sink transformed from something that made my head explode to mere archeological evidence of good oral hygiene.  My life improved. 
So hmmm, what other changes in labeling could I make......hmmmm

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #46 on: January 15, 2020, 06:12:22 PM »
I think I'm going to cut out hard liquor. I we went out for after-dinner drinks last night, and I had a single martini for the first time in a while. I used to love these, but last night the gin smelled like lab solvent (which, to be fair, is one use of ethanol). It hit me so hard that by the time we got home, I was asking my husband, "what the hell do they put in those things? Ketamine?" I slept horribly and woke up with a headache and heartburn.

Wine and cider only, I think, except for a rare single pour of very good whiskey. And more alcohol-free days.

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #47 on: January 18, 2020, 01:20:47 PM »
...
I recently read something about goals that I really liked. It was about rewording how you describe them. Goals are simply something you want for your life that you're not currently doing for whatever reason.
That works so much better for me because I have an aversion to things that feel like a task. If I know I should do it, I find reasons not to.

So in my case, I want to go to bed 7.5 hours before I get up most nights because a good night's sleep has a positive effect on everything else in my life. And I want that extra sparkle. The work in forming this habit is all about figuring out what's getting in the way of my desire and removing as many barriers as possible (like your mention of making dinner even though you didn't want to in the moment, because you had defrosted food that would otherwise go bad).

I'm finding that it's those simple moments and not the big intention I start with, that make or break a life change.
My current therapist has been really good in this respect, either through her insights or helping me to reach my own. It really is incredible how wording something differently can make a huge difference sometimes. My latest big revelation was realising how much I was internally rebelling against the idea that I might need help (this was in relation specifically to housework and hiring a cleaner) but when I reframed it to myself as needing some support, I began to see it in an entirely different light. Just a different word for essentially the same thing but it happened to click in this time and place for me. Words can be so powerful.
Hmmm.  Pondering this.  It once occurred to me looking at the GD bathroom sink full of toothpaste spats again - I had cleaned the sink three times in 30 hours- That my kids were brushing their teeth a lot.  Toothpaste splats in a sink transformed from something that made my head explode to mere archeological evidence of good oral hygiene.  My life improved. 
So hmmm, what other changes in labeling could I make......hmmmm

I recently read that the Danes are masters in reframing their thoughts. There are a number of external factors that help them consistently rank among the world's happiest nations. But I think their ability to keep perspective plays a huge part. It's a skill I'm working on and trying to teach my daughter.

We have plenty of evidence of good oral hygiene in our home too. It'll be hard to think of it any other way now, thanks!

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #48 on: January 18, 2020, 01:55:00 PM »
Something I struggle with a bit is my coffee consumption creeping up. I did have a third cup yesterday--I have a sinus infection and would have gone home early, but that would have left a colleague in the lurch--but generally I am sticking to two.

AND I have been drinking it with only half and half, no sugar. I was using flavored fake creamer.

Been going easy on myself this week, because of the sinus infection and I also seem to have some tendinitis in my hips. No biking to work or gym. Which is sad, but I think it's what my body needs right now.

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Re: Healthy Choices 2020
« Reply #49 on: January 18, 2020, 02:18:53 PM »
LBF, those sound like healthy for now choices.

To reduce stress, I'm aiming to have a less packed schedule. Today I successfully moved a regular appointment from a normally busy day day to a completely open day! Now I just need to be sure not to fill that newly opened time...