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Why You Should Invest in Your Health, and My Plans for Better Self-Care

November 11, 2015

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Your health is much like your retirement account: you have to make regular contributions to keep it healthy and up to speed. Why investing in your health is so important via @shoeaholicnomore

I’m going to let you in on a little secret that’s not going to be so secret anymore after this – I’ve gained weight since I quit my job.

At this time last year, I weighed about 30 lbs less than I do now. I was working out regularly (MWF) at a gym, and I was going on a brisk walk with one of my dogs every day. I had nothing to measure the amount of exercise I was getting, but I do know that I lost some weight, my clothes were fitting loosely and I felt pretty good.

Fast forward a few months to just after the new year and I stopped going to the gym. I no longer had time in the evenings to fit in both my workout and to get all of my business tasks completed. I had to make a choice and I chose my business.

On the plus side, this reduced my monthly expenses by $80/month and also helped me to bring in more income so I could quit my job. The downside is that I had an extremely optimistic view in my head of what self-employment would be like, and it isn’t exactly what I imagined.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m very happy with my decision to quit my job and work from home. I love what I do and I wouldn’t go back for (almost) anything. But that vision in my head of having lots of spare time to exercise, cook, and work on projects around my house is laughable now.

Instead I’ve taken on more, bigger, clients and have really started to see the fruits of my labor in terms of business income. The downside though is that I’ve spent a lot more time sitting at my desk and a lot less time walking than I used to. My trips to the rest room and the “break room” (aka – kitchen) are about 5 steps vs the long trip across the office when I was working full-time. Thus my weight has ballooned about 15 lbs since I quit my job in July, and it’s got to stop. (Partially because some of my capsule wardrobe clothes are too tight now too.) 🙁

Investing in your health is something you always need to make room for in your financial budget and in your time budget because if you don’t have your health, you don’t have anything.

Here’s my plan for better self-care.

Track, Track, Track

I broke down and bought a FitBit (which wasn’t in the budget plan) so I can track my steps, my calories in and out, my heart rate, my sleep, and more. I’ve had it for just over 2 weeks now and it is definitely motivating me to get more steps in my day, and to watch my food intake too. Food has definitely always been more of a struggle for me than working out.

I’ve always been one who’d rather workout a little bit longer so I can have a Snickers (or something else) instead of not having one at all. I’m definitely more aware now that I’m tracking my exercise and my calories in and out.

Find Accountability

I read a great post from my friend Carrie at Careful Cents the other day and I also watched her Periscope where she talked about needing to take better care of herself. As soon as I saw those, I reached out to her to see if she’d like to work together to be more healthy.

We’ve added each other on FitBit and have done a great job at checking in about food and exercise with a daily text. We talk about what we did well as well as the things we need to improve on. Neither of us are perfect, but we are both working really hard to do better each day.

Improving your health and losing weight isn’t easy. In fact, it’s extremely hard and takes a long-term period of effort to see results, but it’s one of the most important things you can do for yourself. Of course I’m a big advocate for getting your finances in order, but right above that is your health because your finances won’t matter if you aren’t around anymore due to poor self-care.

Are you trying to lose weight or take better care of yourself? How can I help? I’m always looking for more accountability! 🙂

Your health is much like your retirement account: you have to make regular contributions to keep it healthy and up to speed. Why investing in your health is so important via @shoeaholicnomore

Stop living paycheck to paycheck. Start earning $10,000 per month.

Fill out the form to learn how I scaled my business from zero to $10K with these three things and why I'm confident they can work for you, too!

26 responses to “Why You Should Invest in Your Health, and My Plans for Better Self-Care

  1. I love this! I gained about 30-40 pounds over the past few years and it’s probably partly due to the fact that I sit at a desk all day and don’t watch my diet. I purchased a hybrid elliptical on Craigslist last week and I’m going to start doing the 21 Day Fix and drinking shakeology after Thanksgiving so I can work out at home, hopefully eat better, and lose weight. All in all, the investment for everything will run me about $250, but it’s still cheaper than a gym membership and it will help me become healthier so I’m excited about that. Good luck on your goal and I’m glad the business is running well! Sounds like I should really get a Fitbit as well 🙂

    1. I’m loving my FitBit so far, but I had been thinking of getting one for over a year before I finally did. I think they can be a good tool if you know it’ll help you stay motivated. Good luck with your elliptical and shakeology. I hope it works for you!! 🙂

  2. Hey Kayla, I can definitely relate. My highest weight was after I had my daughter and I remember looking at a pic about 3 years ago that we took together at one of her preschool events. I was literally in tears! Before getting married and having her, I always prided myself on being able to manage my weight (even if just a little bit).

    Around July or so last year I was inspired by an instagrammer (Lakeitha Duncan) to try the LCHF (Low Carb, High Fat) lifestyle. It’s mainly where you focus on eating health fats (butter, coconut oil, olive oils, etc) and keeping carbs to the lowest amount you can tolerate.

    Well, I lost 40 lbs. last summer! In October I found out I was expecting my son, so after I had him this June I picked right back up and lost another 10 or so pounds. It’s really easy to stick to and you never feel deprived. Matter of fact, sometimes I have to remind myself that I need to eat.

    Only drawback (and where I could use some accountability), allowing myself an occasional treat. Recently it led to a two week binge full of all the candy I could get my hands on. I gained 10 lbs. in a week! I am slowly coming back from it, but I feel terrible! I’ve had achy joints, headaches, and I’ve been tired and irritable.

    So, yeah, I could use a little nudge to make sure I don’t get my hands on anymore Reese’s cups. Lol.

    Thanks for the post, it’s inspiration we could all use!

    1. Hey Latoya! Congrats on that working for you. That’s awesome! I think weight is kind of like money in that both are taboo topics that people don’t want to talk about. I think that’s kind of crazy, so I’m just openly sharing about it today, lol. I have a long way to go (more than just the weight I’ve gained lately) in order to get to where I want to be.

  3. Good luck and thank you for the encouragement. Yesterday, my co-worker and I discussed holding each other accountable concerning healthier choices. We also sit too much!

  4. When I quit my job many years ago to be home with my baby, I thought the same thing. I’d really be able to take better control of my life, including my diet and exercise. Nope. Like you, I was better able to control all of that while I was at a 9-5 job. It’s great that you’re getting a hold of this early. I could write a blog about lifelong weight issues. I offed an entire box of Hostess Sno Balls yesterday! Man, they sure were good though.

  5. Agreed. I had this ideal vision in my head that I would freelance and have plenty of time to workout since I would be home all the day. Now I’m working more hours that I ever thought and my poor dogs think my laptop is a greedy member of the family. I need to schedule in the time like I do for everything else. Thanks for being so candid!

    1. Kristin – scheduling it in is a great idea! I have been going on a walk with my cousin (who lives here too) everyday at 2:00-ish in the afternoon. It has helped me get out there and get moving. Yesterday she wasn’t able to go, but I was used to my routine so I went anyway just to stay on track (and because I knew I couldn’t go today as it’s blizzarding).

  6. I had the opposite problem. I worked out more, BUT…I’m not killing it as a freelancer like many of my counterparts. Health has always been #1 for me. Why does it seem like we always have to sacrifice SOMETHING? 🙁 Best of luck on your new health journey!

    1. Hey Tonya, I know what you mean. It seems that if i put one thing at the forefront of my focus something else slips away. For example, before I quit myFT job my house was a disaster b/c all of my time and energy was being put toward my business and my job. Now my house looks better and my business is going well but my self-care has suffered and I’ve gained weight. Sigh! I don’t know if there’s ever a perfect balance.

  7. Ooooo another fitbit friend add me too! I really need to lose at LEAST 15lbs. We’re going away in March and id really like to use that as a motivator. I go through stages ot being super.motivated and then not 🙁 for me i know i MUST get back into tracking it helps. I also need to move more walking isnt enough for me i need to kock ot up.

    1. I’ll try to add you on there today. 🙂 I hope your trip is the motivation you need to get into gear. I always have trouble starting something new.

  8. I’m on a weight loss journey too, Kayla! I’ve lost 10 pounds so far. And I’ve got at least 20 more to go! I’ve been following Tim Ferriss’ Four Hour Body slow-carb diet for over three months. Accountability partners really help! But I’m always struggling to find time to exercise.

  9. Congratulations on taking control of your health! That’s the best (and hardest) step. I have no doubt that you’ll be back to your desired weight in no time. I hope to transition to working from home within the next few years, and I think about the exercise aspect A LOT. Right now, I work full-time at a university (in PR) so there’s a university gym within walking distance from the office. This means that I can sneak in run during my lunch break, which is awesome! But it also means that I don’t know what will happen when I eventually move on to self-employment, haha. So I can imagine that the struggle is real! Can’t wait to hear how the journey goes!

    1. Thanks Taylor! There are definitely a lot of benefits to working at home, but I definitely struggle to find ways to get more steps into my daily routine. Part of that is because my business has become a lot busier than I thought it would. (A good problem to have.)

  10. It’s always good to take care of your health before serious problems set in. Unfortunately I waited too long for that, but it’s never too late to make some kind of an improvement. My wife and I ate better and exercised more last year and both lost some weight, but we need to get back to it as we’ve slipped quite a bit. Watching your weight is like watching your budget, you have to remain vigilant or it will begin to creep out of control!

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