I’ve been kinda quiet lately but I’ve been on a personal journey the past few months.  Lots of things have happened and lots of things have changed.  I started hormone replacement therapy for menopause March 1st and that’s when my quality of life started to climb out of the dark pit it was in.  I started sleeping again.  I love sleep and rarely feel like I get enough but I’m finally getting more and that’s why things are different now.  I have energy to exercise.  I have a positive outlook which makes it easier to eat right.  I also started working with a women’s only nutrition and life program called Balance 365.  All things combined and I’m finding my way back to the best version of myself possible.

I don’t lift heavy right now but I do strength workouts both body weight and hand weights and with a home gym.  I’m working on budgeting for a ladies bar and weights so I can do even more at home.  I haven’t been running as much as in the past but that’s o.k.  August 1st  I’ll start kicking up the miles to prepare to run the Walking Tall 25K at Big Hill Pond State Park in south central Tennessee.

I don’t want to make this an update about “look at me, I lost weight” because that’s a tiny part of what’s happening.  I’m tracking my calories nearly every day.  I’m learning that hunger is not like a house on fire; I don’t need to extinguish immediately.  Let it smolder for a bit, I will not die.  I’m seeing a side of myself return that I feared was lost forever to menopause and midlife misery.  I’m down 15 lbs and 8.75″ overall since March 1st.  I have around 15 lbs left to lose and I hope to have 6-8 more pounds off by October 19th when the 25K is.

The best part is that the changes I’ve made are ones I can sustain for life.  I run for fun and fitness now.  I no longer run as a punishment for something I ate because diet culture shamed me into thinking I should have the willpower to resist.  Food obsession is gone from my life for the first time in 35 years.  I don’t eat foods I hate. I don’t diet.  I live a new lifestyle that involves healthy eating within a calorie range that has me in a deficit most days so I can shed excess fat.  I enjoy running and strength work so much more now because I do it for fun and a feeling of health and fitness.

Part of the process the past few months has been discovering what the make-or-break things are for my journey back to a vibrant life.  For me, it’s sleep.  A few days without good sleep and my weight loss stops, I can’t fathom exercising, and I’m looking for sweets and carbs every hour again.

Give this some thought today and see if you know what your make-or-break habits are for living your best life.