The Storm Before the Calm

job stress

by Kelly Songy Nelson

Life is full of ebbs and flows. I find, and many of you may find, that my times for working out are a big ebb and flow area of my life.  Right now, in the heart of the summer, it may be tough to stick with your workout program or your nutrition plan.  I fell off the workout wagon about three weeks ago.  No real reason why – just one morning off turned into 3 weeks off (I’m very much a routine-driven person).

This morning I took a moment to reflect on life without working out.  My husband, Coach Jimmy, is SUPER disciplined with his workouts – most days he gets in two workouts thanks to having workouts that we are able to do from home!  I admire his dedication and discipline so much and he’s been such a great motivator and inspiration for me.  He knows that in order to keep his sanity (and maintain his 100 pound weight loss), that he must take time for himself, to work on himself.

Being a Work At Home Mom to 17 month old Asher, my “ME” time is pretty much slim to none!  So for me to find an hour to carve out for ME with no distractions is pretty tough – as I’m sure lots of parents can attest.  I am a morning workout kinda gal, but recently, I’ve taken to hitting snooze or letting Asher be my alarm clock (he’s up by 5:30am most mornings!).  So my day starts with a jolt, throwing off the covers to soothe and nurse Asher at 4:30am.  Most mornings I can get him back to sleep for about an hour.  I’m so exhausted that instead of getting my workout done for the day, I climb back into bed to enjoy the quiet peacefulness.

When Asher wakes up for the day, I stumble out of bed again and we make Shakeology and then it’s time to start the day.

My day is non-stop.  As an Executive Assistant to a very successful CEO, I need to bring my A Game each day.  I may not work the 40+ hours that I used to in Corporate America, but my job is just as demanding and the stress of doing a good job is still there.  I juggle emails and calendars along with Asher and Jimmy.  I need to be on the ball, clear-headed and focused.

Once I step away from work in the evening, it’s family playtime followed by dinner, bath time and bed time.

I know most of you can relate and probably have schedules that make mine look like a walk in the park!  I’m not sure if you workout consistently or not, but going on 3 weeks of not working out, I noticed some things.  And I wasn’t happy about them.

I’d like to think that I’m a fairly laid back girl.  Over the years, I’ve learned to manage my stress levels.  This week, things have been different.  I’ve had lots of anxiety.  Any time an email comes in, I can feel my blood pressure go up.  Now I will give a disclaimer – this has nothing to do with the work that I do or the people I work for.  I’m the type that when I hear or see an email come through, I need to deal with it immediately.  So as emails would come in, regardless of what they were about or who they were from, I could literally feel my blood pressure rise and my whole body tense up.  WHY?!  It seems so silly and trivial, but it’s progressively gotten worse over this last week.  I answer the emails in a timely manner, but I still cringe every time a new one arrives.

Friday night, we had date night.  Asher had a sleepover with his grandparents which allowed Jimmy and I an evening of fun.  We went out for happy hour, caught a movie, grabbed food after then headed home.  This morning, before going to get Asher, we laid on the couch and did nothing…watched crap TV and vegged!  Normally, I’m all for relaxing on the couch, but I found it incredibly difficult (and frustrating) not to be able to relax.  I could feel my abs, legs and even my neck clinched so tight.  I had an anxious feeling in the pit of my stomach that I just couldn’t shake.  I got up to shower and my hip flexors were so tight, you’d have thought that I would’ve been sitting in a chair all night.  Heck, even my ears were tense!

I stopped, took a deep breath and tried to let go.  What was stressing me out so badly?  While I want to do a good job at work, that couldn’t have been the root of this tension.  My home life is amazing, so that’s definitely not it.  Then it hit me…hello, I haven’t worked out in three weeks…I have been a lazy sack of potatoes and my body was crying out for help.

As I showered this morning, I started at my head and worked my way to my toes, breathing and stretching through each muscle group, trying to work out the tension.  My body smiled and obliged.  That’s it…that’s the missing link.

job stress1

By neglecting not just my “ME” time, but time to focus on my body and my health, so many things changed in just a short amount of time. Tension, exhaustion, headaches, laziness – which led to poor food choices…and the list goes on.  It really hit me square in the face! I’m so blessed.  Jimmy has been such a motivator.  He’s tried several times this week to encourage me to set a time to workout – to work on ME.  This week, I’ve kind of let it go in one ear and out the other with the thought of “oh, I’ll just hop back on tomorrow”.  My friends, tomorrow never comes.  NOW is the time to act and take steps to change.

Jimmy and I are starting a new workout program on Monday.  Body Beast.  Yes, it’s going to be as challenging as it sounds.  I’m nervous (who wouldn’t be with a program that has BEAST in the title!?!?!), but excited…and more importantly, I’m ready.  Ready to work on ME, ready to have that time back to improve my health, ready to get out of this rut and into a healthy routine and ready to see results!  Remember, you can’t expect to see results if all you do is look at the box.  OPEN THE BOX and PRESS PLAY!

I am so blessed to be surrounded by such an amazing support system.  Jimmy plays a vital role in that, but he’s not the only one – our team of coaches is UNBELIEVABLE.  Sometimes, I have to pinch myself and check to see that there’s no hidden camera around!  The CREW is there to share encouraging words and help us stay on track…and most of the time it’s a little random post, but it’s exactly what I needed to hear!  I’m surrounded by all of this amazing support and I fell off the wagon.  Can you imagine what it could do to a person who has fallen off the wagon and hasn’t surrounded themselves with a proper support team?

I don’t want to keep feeling the way that I do.  I am ready to hop back in the saddle and Crush this!!!  I am ready for my blood pressure and anxiety levels to go down; I’m ready for my sleep to feel more restful and to wake up with energy and focus.

If you’ve found yourself in a similar position and are ready for change, but don’t know where to turn, I encourage you to leave a comment below.  We would be honored to help you get on the path to uncovering the best you!

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What Jimmy's Trainees & Crew Members are saying

Tulin E.

"I was a skeptic. Thanks to Coach Jimmy's leadership 1.5 years later, I earn twice the income of my previous full time job, we lost 150 lbs as a couple, and helping hundreds of plus size women. Fitness has become our family's life bringing us closer together!"

Andy Tuttle

Branch Mgr, Oak Mortgage Group

"Coach Jimmy's constant support and encouragement has helped me be a better "me". Down 17lbs. More engaged in my marriage. More focused in my business. Couldn't have done it without you. Thanks Coach!"