Taking a Day Off

As I have noted a number of times in this blog, I try to maintain a healthful diet and exercise regularly. I’m convinced that doing so helps me manage my multiple sclerosis, and it just makes me feel better overall.

But I do tend to be obsessive about such things. For many years, I was convinced that the whole scheme would crumble if I missed a day at the gym or overindulged on a not-so-healthful food item. I was one of those people whose day revolved around her workout schedule; by extension, that meant my family’s schedules did, too.

It’s taken me years to recognize that I needed to chill out. My slavish devotion to my exercise routine was nearly as bad for my body and mind as lying around like a sloth every day would be.

Nowadays I try to be flexible: I go to the gym as often as I reasonably can without interfering with everyone else’s day, and I recognize that missing a day now and then is not the end of the world. I feel much more balanced and happy now that I’ve figured that out.

The revelation came into sharp focus this past Sunday, when I went on a road trip with my 19-year-old daughter to visit a historic home located about an hour from where we live. It was a glorious summer day, and the rural scenery was delightful. We spent a couple of hours at the historic site, then decided to enjoy a leisurely lunch before stopping by another museum.

My daughter looked at her watch. “But, don’t you want to go to the gym?” She knows the gym closes early on Sundays.

I didn’t hesitate. “Nope,” I told her. “I’m taking a day off.” Spending time with her, doing things we both love, was way, way more important than squeezing in some treadmill time.

It was a terrific day. I even ate a slice of excellent lemon meringue pie, something I wouldn’t normally do.

I’ll try to get to the gym this afternoon. But if I don’t, it’s no big deal.

That attitude is, I believe as important to my good health as anything else.
Tags Healthy Living      0

Jennifer LaRue Huget, Blogger

Jennifer LaRue Huget was diagnosed with MS in 2001. A freelance writer and children's book author, she lives in Connecticut with her husband, two teenage kids, and two brown dogs. Her website is www.jenniferlaruehuget.com.