Wellness sisters, welcome! The third Sunday of June means it’s time for Wellness Weekend 06.2020. Sharing an update on my wellness goals and talking a little bit about mind exercise. This time last month, we were 2 months into the stay at home restrictions. In that month’s wellness post, I updated my goals and talked about water sport. If you missed that post, click here to read it. Then in May, I updated my goals, here, and shared a little about how a sense of commitment returned me to blogging after a mini social media break.
This bright Sunday, let’s see how I’ve done in the past 4 weeks toward improving my wellness. Still committing to all 5s by the year’s end. But fair warning, I think I’ve slipped a little since May.
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WELLNESS WEEKEND 06.2020 GOALS UPDATE
It feels kind of like El Paso is beginning to wake up after the long Covid-induced hibernation. Still staying at home most days except when sitting my pumpkins across the mountain. And still always wearing a mask in public. Let’s see where I am for Wellness Weekend 06.2020, at this mid point for the year.
PHYSICAL HEALTH – 3.0 (Holding steady)
- Stretch and work out 4x a week , Weight Watchers to maintain weight – we’re still enjoying these very do-able HASfit workout videos and running a mile 3-4 times a week. Some evenings at sunset, we take a quick 2-3 mile bike ride before settling down in front of the TV. And have begun to swim laps using our new Speedo mask, snorkel and fins. Also using the kickboard I ordered last month. Haven’t been tracking Weight Watchers but have miraculously kept my weight right at my WW lifetime goal. Yay ME!!
- Get 7200 steps and 3 floors a day – this has been a struggle. I think I must need to climb Mt. Everest for my new fitness tracker to register that I have gone up a story or a floor. Our 17 step stair case doesn’t make an impression on it at all. And my battery wears out before the day is done causing me to miss out on valuable steps toward my goal.
- Walk in nature for 30 minutes a day, 5x a week – well, heck, now that Cia is back to daycare, we’ve had to discontinue our walks. Need to return to walking during my time at home.
NUTRITIONAL HEALTH – 4.5 (Holding steady)
- Cook meals at home 4x a week – in El Paso, restaurants are opening up slowly with limited seating. We did go for sushi on the patio at Kona Grill. The occupied tables were spread apart quite a bit so I felt fairly safe. We haven’t done much drive through and no delivery other than pizza a couple of times. Most days I cook. Tonight it’s this Weight Watchers crockpot hamburger stew and cornbread.
- Eat 1 fruit and 1 veggie every day (sad, I know) – yes, yes, yes!! Finally something I am doing well. Since we have started drinking a smoothie every morning, we are getting loads of fruits and veggies in our day. Check out some of our favorite smoothie ingredients, here.
- Indulge in alcohol and sweets on weekends – somehow some red, white and blue M&Ms snuck in here, dang it! Seems positively unpatriotic to let them go to waste. So there’s that. We did enjoy a bottle (small) of Mango Tango the other night on the patio, too. But it was a Sunday night…that’s still the weekend, right?
SPIRITUAL HEALTH – 4.0 (Holding steady)
- Develop a morning routine M-F – I’ve always had some sort of routine but Covid and Cia sitting have shaken it up a bit. Finding my new normal now that PC has returned to work at the office, we are trying to get up early enough to exercise before he goes. For some additional direction, I am checking out Make Over Your Mornings/Evenings. As I have mentioned before but this time I am really checking them out. And thankfully back to my paper to-do list making.
- Enjoy quiet time M-F (devotional, writing, reading, moment of silence and prayer) – yes. Continuing to hit snooze every morning then using that extra 10 minutes to say my prayers. Finished reading Present over Perfect since my last update. Have just begun reading a new book, Devotions from the Beach, a gift from my BFF Sharon.
- Use aroma therapy during my morning routine – had cleaned off my desk and was doing my devotional up there but now I have moved to the patio. Need to move my diffuser out there.
MENTAL HEALTH – 3.5 (Holding steady)
- Get dressed every day (not active wear), wear a dress or skirt to church – there’s no getting dressed for church…YET. Our church did open last weekend but we have to RSVP to one of the services. When I tried on Saturday for the following morning, the services were all full. We’ve decided to give them a week or two to iron out all the kinks before we go anyway. In the meantime, ordering and wearing lots of shorts (these and these and some cute ones from JCrew Factory) and jeans with graphic tees and kimonos.
- Weekly artistic activity; word games, journal – had been playing word games on my phone but when I took a social media break, I also deleted Words with Friends. Might reinstall, might not. Have been journaling, and scrapbooking with my sister. Making some patriotic decorations…stay tuned for more.
- Read 3 books a month in order to meet my Goodreads goal (are we friends on Goodreads yet?) – our public library is still closed but the book return is open. Have 3 books to drop by there tomorrow. Slowly working my way through Pearls of Wisdom by Barbara Bush, just finished Educated by Tara Westover and Truths I Never Told You by Kelly Rimmer. And thoroughly enjoying Beach Read by Emily Henry. Looking for a great summer read…check it out. If you are looking for a great online book club, holler! I’ve got just the one for you.
RELATIONSHIP HEALTH – 3.5 (Up .5)
- Unplug at 8:30 pm, implement evening routine – my break from social media helped me to get started doing this again. We’ve watched several series on Hulu. Gone on bike rides and walks. But have also just turned off the blessed TV and sat outside on our patio. Or gone up to bed early to read.
- Date night with PC 2x a month (bucket list activities) – with restaurants and stores opening up again, we have enjoyed a couple of dates…not necessarily at night. Have walked the outlet mall, had sushi, tried a brand new restaurant, Chase the Taste. Sure will be glad to have a movie date!
- Me time, develop friendships, take a class or do something for myself – not much. My ‘me time’ has involved crafting, finishing my spring cleaning, listening to books on Audible and Dave Ramsey on Stitcher. The gal who is teaching the mosaic classes is back in business; hoping to grab Lauren and go.
PREVENTATIVE HEALTH MAINTENANCE – 2.5 (Holding steady)
- Improved skin care, routine facials – I like the RoC Retinol Correxion night cream I bought on Amazon. It does dry my skin a bit so I am only using it every other day, though. Checked out the cryo facials available on Ft. Bliss but they are pricey. With a capital P. Pricey. Once the germs settle, I might just go back for another micro-dermabrasion facial.
- Weekly dry brushing – even though the brush is hanging there by the shower door, I keep forgetting to do this.
- Regular manicures – girls, I am so hard on my nails! Need to do this desperately as I am not ready to go have a professional mani quite yet.
FINANCIAL HEALTH – 3.0 (HOLDING STEADY)
- Continue saving each month – in addition to making itty bitty deposits in my money market account, I’ve been playing the stock market using Robinhood. It’s been fun because I have ‘researched’ some stocks and purchased a share or two in things like Pinterest, Michaels, and Siri.
- Save for birthdays and Christmas – saving a little each month.
- Keep spending under control – have reeled in the spending a bit, did buy 3 pairs of shorts, some metallic flats, and this swim shirt for avoiding sunning while swimming laps.
Last week our gym reopened. We popped by in our masks just to check things out. Neither of us is really ready to get back in there yet. Maybe by next month’s Wellness Weekend.
Each month we have an optional theme for these posts. For Wellness Weekend 06.2020, the prompt is mind exercise. To be perfectly honest, I feel like my mind has gone to mush during this stay at home period. So this theme might be right on time to save me.
As I explained above, I uninstalled Words with Friends from my phone during my brief social media break. Haven’t put it back on yet. And that game had been about the extent of any mind exercise in my life lately. Decided to put on my research librarian hat and look into the benefits of mental exercise.
According to an article on BeBrainFit, to be sufficiently stimulating brain exercises must be “novel and complex…proactively shaking up your daily routines is key to a healthier, sharper mind.” [source] The article suggests these “15 top brain exercises to keep your mind sharp.”
Simple Exercises to Try
- switch hands – use your non-dominant hand for simple activities, hair and tooth brushing maybe?
- eat with chopsticks – yikes, I have enough trouble with a knife and fork
- do chores with your eyes close – me thinks not cooking, but the authors suggest doing the laundry, showering
- do things upside or backward – wear your watch upside down, or put the clock upside, or draw/paint upside down. You might have seen the speed painter at George Floyd’s Houston memorial painting the deceased upside down. I attended a presentation at the El Paso Holocaust Museum where participants drew a portrait of a young victim of genocide upside down. Drawing upside down is a great way to reduce insecurities related to art ability.
- read books out loud – doing this with Cady, and I find if I ‘whisper read’ my own books, my attention is better. And listening to books read aloud (Audible) engages the imagination in a different way [source].
- simultaneously engage all 5 senses – I think cooking is a good way to do this. The article suggests visiting a farmer’s market.
- try new things – join me for Stepping Outside My Comfort Zone, last day of the month.
More Challenging Activities
- master a new skill – can’t wait to get back to learning pickleball, interested in trying YouTube piano lessons
- turn off technology – I am lucky to spell my name right these days without help from spellcheck. Forcing myself to spell things first as closely as I can then look up the word to check my spelling. Same thing with simple math problems. I add/subtract in my head then double check with a calculator.
- make diverse social connections – blogging!!
- try meditation – using Calm.com; try it for free
- get physical exercise – improves the circulation of nutrients and oxygen to the brain
- take up a creative hobby – hey, my scrapbooking, rock painting, garland making are actually worthwhile activities
- be a lifelong learner – anxious to be able to get back to taking classes
What are you doing to exercise your brain?
Over the past couple of months, have your felt like life has been turned upside down? Have your body and mind turned to mush like it seems mine have some days? Or maybe you feel on top of things, have found new ways to stay strong. Maybe you have good days and bad? Whatever the case, I think we have all probably done the best we could do under the circumstances. This spring hasn’t been easy for anyone.
If you, like I, have fallen off a little on your wellness goals, take comfort! We have a half-year still ahead of us to get those 5s on each of our goals. We can still do this thing!
Thank you for encouraging me on my wellness journey. Please keep in mind our upcoming themes for the remainder of the year. And come back on the 3rd Sunday of July to check in with us.
- July 19: Fun activity
- August 16: Flexibility
- September 20: Balance
- October 18: Walking
- November 15: Peace
- December 20: Wrap-up
Please use the link up to share your wellness related post.
Enjoy your weekend, my friends. Stay well!!
Hugs and kisses,