I’m never one to think I’m doing a good job, with anything, so it’s unprecedented for me to say that, right now, I’m killing it as a mama.
When the world turned on its head last March, and we started to realize we were in this for the long haul, my husband and I committed to making sure our girls lives remained as normal as possible. And by and large, we have done it. They are in school, they see their friends, they play sports, most important they are safe and happy kids.
Where I’m failing, quiet miserably is taking care of myself.
Which is an odd feeling because, Pre-COVID, I was in a good routine. I hit the gym several times a week, planned a few girls weekends, and made time for date nights and quiet time. Not all the time, just enough to help me feel like I was replenishing my soul a bit.
But pandemic parenting has taken its toll, (did you ever think your house could be so loud??) and I’m feeling the strain in more ways than one.
My stamina is at an all time low, I have a hard time focusing, and I feel overwhelmed and bored at the same time.
So I decided, if I’m going to keep my promise to my family and get us to the finish line of this big mess in one piece, I have to pull it together and get out of this rut.
Today, I’m sharing a few of the things that are starting to help me feel like my old self. I’m not 100% there (not even close) but I feel like I’m taking the right steps to put myself back together.
We’re so close to this being over, that when life goes back to normal, I want to be able to jump right in, head first, feeling my best.
How I’m (Trying) to Get Out of my 2020 Rut
A lot of what I’m focusing on is health and fitness related, but I want to be really clear that the most important thing for me is perspective.
This year hasn’t been without its challenges for my family, but by and large, in the scope of this pandemic, we have been fortunate. The way I look at it is, I have no excuse not to get it together.
When times get tough, or I feel my anxiety and depression start to to rise, my gratitude practice as been the single biggest factor in helping me navigate out of it.
And I know how much better I feel when I put into practice a few simple activities, like regular exercise, drinking lots of water, and using food as fuel.
It been my experience that you can’t make physical changes unless you take care of your emotional health too.
Getting Back on Track
This journal is both cheeky and helpful. It’s filled with prompt to help you think about what you can let go of. Below are two that I love:
What extra efforts do you make to feel virtuous? Are they worth it?
What could you stop trying to fix and just enjoy?
Right? Think about that.
I like it so much I ordered a handful to send as a Valentine to girlfriends.
* Don’t buy if you’re offended by cussing. 😉
Water Bottle, $22
A few months ago I featured the gallon size of this water bottle. I used it religiously, until my 2 year old broke it. When I went to replace it I accidentally ordered this 64 oz version, which turned out to be a happy mistake. It’s a lot more manageable.
Fill it up in the morning and leave it on your kitchen counter. Yes you’ll have to pee every hour, but you’ll get the benefits of proper hydration almost immediately.
Daily Planner, $11
There isn’t a calendar/planner/organizing app I haven’t tried. Where I struggle is keeping on track during the day. I discovered these day planning tear sheets on Caitlin Covington’s Instagram and ordered them right away. I keep it on a clipboard and jot down what I need to do each day – so easy and uncomplicated.
Workout Gear Upgrade
There is nothing more motivating than new work out gear. The next few items are from Old Navy. They are cute, well made and affordable because this girl just can’t get behind a $500 workout outfit.
Built-In Sculpt Leggings, $38
We’ve talked a lot about leggings here over the past few weeks. Remember there is a difference between the leggings you wear in an outfit and the ones you work out in. I LOVE these built-in sculpt leggings from Old Navy (a big thank you to my friend Sarah for recommending them!).
They come in a ton of colors and all sizes for under $40. Sold.
Sports Bra, $19
I’ve never been one to wear coordinating workout gear. Instead, I’ve stuck with all black or grey pieces to mix and match. But one afternoon, while shopping with my 11-year-old, she convinced me otherwise. So I let her pick out a few fun, colorful “sets” for me.
I wear a 36 C traditional bra and comfortably wear this in a medium.
Fleece Zip Hoodie, $40
I love this cozy fleece zip hoodie. I can throw it on before and after a workout, I’ve worn it with jeans, it will look cute over shorts in the summer. Sometimes a few fresh pieces are all you need to get your motivation back.
Fitbit Charge, $132
I dug out my Fitbit and started tracking my steps again. For the past year I’ve pretty much stayed in my neighborhood, and now with the snow there are even less places to go. My Fitbit basically guilts me into walking around the block a few more times until I feel the fireworks on my wrist. Whatever works.
In the Pre-COVID world I loved my group fitness classes. From cycling to strength training, if it had a killer 90’s hip-hop playlist, I was there. All that obviously came to halt this time last year. I’ve searched everywhere for something to recreate the bouncy, peppy cardio I’m missing. The kind that makes you feel joyful when you’re done.
I’ve only recently discovered The Sculpt Society, by Megan Roup and I LOVE IT!!! It’s easier than Tracey Anderson but still a challenge. She’s a delight, super motivating and accessible. Highly recommend if you’re looking for something to do at home while we wait for spring.
Food as Fuel
Body Love Every Day, $56
I’m a huge fan of Kelly LeVeque. Here signature Fab Four Smoothies have been a game changer for me, and really started my journey to better health. I enjoy her straight forward approach to food, how she clear explains why something is good or bad for you, and her use of science.
Her second book, Body Love Every Day will walk you through a 21 day reset and generally help motivate you to make small yet impactful choices ever day.
Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers
Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers.
Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail.
Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.
If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please follow on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.
Sign Up for Daily Content and Receive Our Free Classic Wardrobe Checklist