Balance is the Key
At 36, I‘m definitely not your stereotypical fitness blogger, immaculate and without a wrinkle in sight, spending their free time posting (staged) Instagram photos. For me, that’s not what sport is about. For me it’s all about health and finding a balance in life rather than about the latest fads or crash diets. Blogging is a hobby for me and I write alongside my proper job whenever my full schedule allows. My job is as senior advisor for a communications agency but I’m also studying for my Masters in psychology, and am completing a qualification in the psychosocial sector. I need to also find time for my volunteer work, my friends and family, my training and healthy eating. Needless to say, there are times (exams!) when this is hard to manage, but it’s precisely this variety in my day-to-day life which stimulates me.
From uncoordinated child to competitive sportswoman
It was as a teenager that I really found sport. I was not a very coordinated child; the tale goes that by mistake I once did a somersault over my doll’s pram. I quite enjoyed sport at primary school, though of course we just played dodgeball every session. At secondary school, it all changed. I thought sport was stupid and so uncool! The sporty crowd were my nightmare. My tactic was simply to always go and stand at the back! But at 12, I discovered basketball and spent years as one of the few girls playing streetball. When I was 14, I decided to join a club and slam dunk competitively. I was part of a really fun team, which made training four times a week and weekend matches a pleasure. During my Matura exams, time was at a premium and I had to shelve competitive sport. Sport had become such an integral part of my life that I missed it terribly.
After my exams, at the start of my undergraduate career, I signed up at a fitness studio – student rates. Later I was lucky enough to train to be an aerobic and fitness trainer, thus turning my hobby into my profession. Since then I have tried many types of sports – for me, variety is the key. From ballet to hip hop, via a revisited affair with basketball to running, Ashtanga yoga and bodywork through to musical dance and much more. Sport is a constant in my life which I need to achieve a balance. At the moment, I am enjoying strength training, running and yoga. I exercise 3 or 4 times per week on average though I have days and sometimes even weeks when I struggle to motivate myself.
For me, balance is just as vital in sport as it is in nutrition. I will never be the kind of person who turns up to a family meal at the weekend with a Tupperware box with nothing but chicken and vegetables. Healthy eating does not mean constant abstinence, but for me is far more to do with body, mind and soul. Exceptions are important as without them, it’s hard to stay focused. Gigi Hadid’s words ring true for me, “Eat clean. Stay fit. And have a burger to stay sane”. This is how it should be! Or use the 80-20 rule: eat 80% healthily and ensure you enjoy the other 20%. And if there are occasions where the balance tips the other way and it is 20-80 for once, the world won’t stop turning.
My days are generally packed so I make sure that I have a satisfying breakfast; oats, fruit etc. This provides strength. I eat light in the office, to avoid falling into a post-prandial coma when all I want to do is sleep. In the evenings I am often at university, so healthy snacks such as date bars are essential. I exercise in the evenings as I am just not a morning person.
To help boost my motivation levels, I love using sport apps such as FITAPP.
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Picture Credit: Rudi Froese