I have been prioritizing my health and getting healthy for over a year now.
I have lost more than 50 pounds in the past year. Yes, that’s awesome, but I have yet to reach my goal.
And I am getting tired.
I’m getting tired of always making the healthy choice. I’m getting tired of planning the meals, making time for exercise, making sure I am taking time to refresh my soul in the midst of busy.
Is anyone following me?!
If you are in the middle of a long health journey, stick with me. It can be hard when you have been making healthy choices for a long time, but you feel you still have so far to go.
Friend, don’t give up in the middle! Change takes time. It’s pushing through the hard times that builds our resolve and really creates those habits that will last long past the “diet” phase.
I find that in the middle of a long journey, it’s good to take a break. This is true on a road trip or long flight.
If you’ve ever taken a long drive, you probably stopped somewhere in the middle to get out and stretch your legs. We have done many long road trips. We usually find a place to let the kids run around. We change the music in the car or think of new discussion topics. On a long flight we often get up and do a little walk around the plane.
It is in our human nature to get bored.
But when I get bored on a road trip, I don’t turn around and go back home. That would be ridiculous! No, I change it up but I keep moving forward.
So how can we translate this to our weight loss journey? How can we change things up but continue going the right direction? How do we stop from getting bored?
Below are 5 “breaks” you can take in your healthy journey to recharge and keep going the right direction.
- Take a break from Menu Planning
I’m starting with my own situation.
I am experiencing ‘menu planning fatigue’. Is that a real thing? I have no idea. But I have it.
We started a long round of Whole30 in the middle of February. It’s now June, and while we haven’t done strict Whole30 the entire past 4 months, I have menu planned 7 dinners a week for the past 16 weeks!
In the past year I have fallen in love with cooking. I love menu planning and finding new recipes. But it takes work. It takes energy. And I just don’t have it right now.
I just don’t want to think about what our family is going to eat every. single. night.
While I need a break from all the hardcore menu planning, I don’t want to resort to eating out or caving to pasta, pizza, and other frozen meals.
I still want to nourish my body. I still want to make healthy choices. I just don’t want to have to think about them right now.
So we are re-activating our subscription to Hello Fresh. We did Hello Fresh last summer and it was amazing. This will not be an in depth review of Hello Fresh, there are many of those online if you want more information. Feel free to send me an e-mail or comment below with your questions, I could say more good things than I have time!
Here’s the bottom line: With Hello Fresh I am given six options for dinner for the week and I pick three. Then it gets delivered to our door completely measured out and ready to cook.
My brain loves this right now!
It cuts down the choices from millions of recipes available online to six options.
If a recipe needs a tablespoon of thyme, there is a tablespoon of thyme in the bag for me to use. I don’t have to think at all. Maybe I sound incredibly lazy to you. That’s fair.
But that’s what I love about Hello Fresh. I can be lazy with my menu planning and food prepping and still feed my family fresh, homemade meals.
On the downside, this can be quite expensive. I’m thinking we will do this for a month, or maybe the summer. It will give me the break I am wanting, and then I will be ready to get back into the swing of menu planning. If you are in the UK you can use this link to get £20 off your first box.
Hello Fresh is not the only company who provides these types of meals, but it’s the only one I’ve used. If this description is making your heart sing, pick one and do it for a few weeks. Give your brain a menu-planning break.
- Take a break from your morning routine
Whether it’s intentional or not, you most likely have a morning routine.
You may get up early and enjoy a quiet house with a cup of coffee and your bible. You may go for an early morning run. You may have a workout you turn on your TV and follow.
Or you might jump out of bed and run around the house like a crazy person trying to get everyone ready to go their separate directions for the day.
Whether it’s organized or chaotic, your morning most likely has a rhythm.
Can you do something to intentionally change this rhythm? Can you add or take away something to give you some new excitement in your journey?
Can you get up 30 minutes earlier and follow a workout video?
Do you need to sleep in an extra 30 minutes to get more rest and get the workout in later in the day?
Can you spend 10 minutes listing what you are grateful for from the day before instead of spending 10 minutes scrolling through social media?
Can you pack lunches, lay out clothes, and sign papers the night before so your morning has a few minutes to spare to pray before you get too busy?
Can you make a change to your morning that will energize you throughout the day?
- Take a break from the way you exercise.
This is usually a really good place for me to start when I get stuck at a certain place in my weight loss.
Sometimes I am not exercising at all. Simply adding an intentional time of movement can give a big boost to your weight loss and energize you to keep going on the journey.
Don’t overcomplicate this. You don’t have to get a membership to anything. Just start walking at a brisk pace or find YouTube tutorials you can follow. Do something in the privacy of your own home if you are not comfortable going out.
If you are already exercising, can you change up what you are doing?
Maybe you love running, but you’ve been running four days a week and you are starting to get bored with it. Run a different route. Ask someone to run with you. Listen to a podcast instead of music. Ask for playlist suggestions for new music to listen to. Do something to change up the feel of your exercise without having to change what’s actually working.
Maybe you want to stop running for the summer and take up swimming instead.
Is there a change you can make to what you are doing that will breath new life into your exercise routine?
- Take a break from Social Media
Can we be honest with ourselves? Sometimes watching other people succeed is incredibly motivating. And sometimes it can be disheartening.
Sometime you see people losing weight and getting healthy and reaching their goals and you are so happy for them and inspired to go after your goals as well.
And then sometimes you see it and you think of how far you have to go before you are at that point. You think of all the things you are doing and the results you are not getting. And you start to wonder if those sacrifices you are making are even worth it. Your life is getting nowhere fast, it does not look that good in photos, and it’s hard to be happy. It’s hard to keep your motivation.
Take a break from the comparison mentality. Take a break from the perfect pictures. Take a break from living up to someone else’s life.
Take some time to live your life without sharing it online.
Take some time to love your life, not someone else’s.
There are a lot of positive, encouraging voices on the Internet. I pray and strive to be one of those voices. I follow many people that encourage me to be a better Christ-follower, wife, mother, and person.
But regardless of how inspired we are by someone else, there is a pull in our hearts to compare our life to others. This is not healthy. This is draining. This will suck your motivation faster than anything else.
Friend, be a positive voice.
Share the good. Encourage others. But never become a slave to an online image.
- Take a break from perfection.
My heart needs this one.
A healthy soul, a healthy family, a healthy body—those are life-long pursuits. Those are not things that I am going to follow a program and achieve. Those are things that require time and patience and failure and learning.
There are times to realize you need a change and to stick to a healthy eating plan 100%. There are times to “never skip a Monday” when it comes to your workouts.
Then there are times to drop the expectations and settle in for the long haul.
There will be times I am going to fail. There will be days that I skip a workout. There will be afternoons where I search the house for chocolate and indulge. There will be times when I throw myself a pity party.
And then I will get back up and I will keep going.
Perfection is not a reality on this earth. Perfection is sabotaging. Perfection is exhausting.
Take a break from impossible standards.
Friend, this life is a journey. Sometimes we need to break up the monotony of a long road. So take a breath, pull over, and give yourself that rest.
Are you getting tired on the journey?
Tell me below what area of your life needs a break. What change—big or small—do you think would energize you to keep going?
I would love to encourage you to take that break and then to keep going! Don’t turn back now, you’ve come too far for that!