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More Than Just This

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Much More

On yesterday, I received a message from a very dear friend that sent me into an emotional cyclone. I kept trying to identify why the message sparked such emotion. Was it because I love this friend so much and my heart ached because she is currently in a tough place? Was it because I felt honored that she would share such intimate details with me and her message reminded of the value of friendship and trust? Or was it because her closing sentiments reminded me of what I am passionate about and of how we never really know who is watching, who we are inspiring and who we are motivating … all without knowing? My resolution was that it’s all of the above. When I woke up this morning still thinking about our exchange yesterday, I decided to write about it – my way to release (or capture) this experience.
My friend’s message was directly and indirectly about so much more, but one of the elements was around weight loss. For those of you who follow and read my blog regularly, you know that I have been on a journey this year to recommit to my health and wellness. Being out on summer break has given me the time and energy to kick things into a completely different gear with more focus on eating whole foods, balancing my nutrition and incorporating more challenging workouts more days a week.
BUT I also acknowledge that this is so much more than a declaration to “eat well and exercise.” For many of us, the commitment to maintain a healthy lifestyle is a daily choice – and for some a daily struggle. Some of us will continue to focus on this for the rest of our lives and may never feel like this is just natural for me. Some of us will have to break-up with food and find new relationships with non-food related practices that allow us to celebrate, handle stress, engage in recreational activities, catch up with friends and curb cravings. Some of us will work through body image issues and revisit childhood norms that helped to lodge us in the places we currently reside in re diet and exercise. Some of us will have to revisit former and current relationships that aided in us feeling less than worthy of being the best “me” or added so much to our plate that we failed to make time to take care of ourselves. Some of us will garner the courage to come face to face with our endless excuses of why we are overweight and/or don’t exercise OR why we think just because we are thin, we are healthy – with little to no care in what we eat, how often we eat and the lack of physical activity.
Some of us will realize that this journey is so much more than just food and exercise.  Some of us will do the hard work to get to the bottom of our habits. And along the way we will realize that just as others have motivated us to get off our as!?*& to make a life change, there is someone who is also watching … gleaming … hoping … moving right along because we have become a source of inspiration for them.  Some of us will learn somewhere along the way that it is so much more …

It’s Our Anniversary!!!

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blogaversary_sign (2)

 

One year later and I am so thankful that I decided to commit to starting and maintaining my blog. Thank you all for following, reading, commenting, “liking,” supporting and virtually encouraging me to keep writing. Here’s to many more years and writing ventures to come!!! 

Well … Me

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Wellness

 

When I woke up this morning my day just felt a little different. I wasn’t sure why or what was going on … nothing special planned and no idea why or how I arrived at work an hour early. But it turned out to be one of the best me-days I could had.

About a month or two ago I went a little wicked with purchasing Groupons. Most of them were/are for health related and/or fitness services and classes and most were things I’d never tried before. So today was my very first acupuncture appointment. At some point I realized I was in a wellness zone and before I left for my appointment, I had several wellness visits scheduled including my 6-month dental cleaning and annual physical. I scheduled my spa visit with one of my favorite women in the world and begun making preparation for my upcoming birthday with a few other pampering appointments. To top all this off, I realized that tomorrow is the one year anniversary of Carter’s Corner (!!!) and exactly 4 weeks ad 2 days before my birthday … 4 weeks and 4 days before a very, very, very special trip. So yes, today was a very special day.

My first acupuncture visit was amazing! Although I was a little nervous and ambivalent about anticipated pain, I was so relaxed during my visit that I actually fell asleep several times on the table. My body was a little sore from the weekend’s workout schedule so I knew I wanted to try to squeeze in a yoga session afterwards. Not only was I able to make it to yoga, but I made it to the 45-minute meditation prelude.

Needless to say, my day and my evening were amazing!!! I feel renewed, rejuvenated and relaxed. I feel refocused, centered and satisfied. I feel well. I feel whole. I feel … me.

This Space

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Ray of Sunshine

I don’t think I have written two posts back to back … but I am feeling some sort of way this morning and want to capture it. In this moment I feel uber excited, intensely hopeful and extremely fortunate. I feel connected – or reconnected – to me. I feel inspired. I feel whole.

Perhaps I have more days like this than not, but today is special because I have had about two full weeks with minimal distractions and a lot of time to reconnect with myself. It feels great. Clearing my head, meddling with my thoughts, refocusing my attention, checking in with regards to my goals and desires … being me. Becoming me. And this has reminded me of how all the noise of Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, text messaging, frivolous relationships, the radio, news broadcasts, and telephone chats can so easily blur my vision and distract me. These last few weeks I have taken time to disconnect at night, have a long quiet drive a few times a week (with no radio or phone time) and indulge heavily in me.

So today this post is just me feeling wonderful … and hoping that you receive a little bit of the sunshine I am radiating.

Do This … Not That

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Journey3

Like scores of others, I made a commitment at the beginning of the year to take better care of me: mind, body and spirit. I am now at the midway mark so this post is a partial check in that corresponds to one predominate part of this commitment. But this past weekend I also visited a family member. We spent hours chatting about lessons learned in re health, wellness and weight loss. Therefore, the other intention behind this post is simply to share what we discussed. None of this is new – just things that have really worked for me … a refresher. Enjoy!

  1. Start small. Go slow.
  2. Be realistic.
  3. Make an exercise date with yourself that you don’t break.
  4. Find a supportive network of people who share your lifestyle: some who are where you want to be and some who are on their way.
  5. Don’t apologize for making healthy choices.
  6. Remain flexible.
  7. Give yourself a break when you fall short of your expectations.
  8. Each meal is an opportunity to start over (per Weight Watchers).
  9. For every bad habit or unhealthy food you limit or eliminate, find a replacement.
  10. Monitor your progress in a variety of ways: scale, measurements, and clothes.
  11. Find non-food rewards. Indulge in non-food rewardsJ.
  12. Find what works for YOU and stick with it.
  13. Take advantage of every opportunity to exercise – it all adds up!
  14. Don’t compare your journey to those of others.
  15. Continue to find new ways to challenge your body.
  16. The scale is both your friend and your enemy ~ treat is as suchJ.
  17. Honor your body; take good care with it.
  18. Listen to your body: rest when needed; eat (only) when hungry.
  19. Don’t apologize for keeping your date with yourself to exercise.
  20. Plan ahead. Period. Plan treat meals. Plan meals out. Plan meals at work. Plan.
  21. For some, more structure in the beginning helps establish healthy eating and exercise routines. Try keeping a food diary that tracks both exercise and food. Write a weekly workout schedule on a visible calendar – and stick with it.
  22. It HAS to be a lifestyle. No quick fixes.
  23. Remain committed!!!! No matter what …

Being You while connect as We!!!!

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She IS a Princess

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Lanitra

Last year was the end and the beginning of many things. In the midst of all the chaos, I remained determined to find snippets of light among what seemed like grand darkness. Several things blossomed from that season: I returned to school; I rediscovered my true self; I opened myself to new adventures, new relationships and a new way of living; I let go of my “perfect life” and become open to creating and recreating a wonderful life regardless of where I thought I’d be or who I thought would be along for the journey. That has worked out well. This summer I also celebrate the one year anniversary of this blog – one of the best gifts I could ever give myself – and the first full year of the Carter Alexander Scholarship Award!

When I contacted my high school Alma mater for a pool of recipients, I never imagined the awardee would be so close to “home” – that has made this endeavor that much more special! She is from my small sub-town, I know her family intimately – we all grew up together – and she is attending a satellite location of the same college where I completed my graduate studies. I am so proud of her and elated that she is the first recipient of the Carter Alexander Scholarship Award!!!

Introducing Ms. Lanitra Bennett – In her own words: I am Lanitra Bennett. I am the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Alonza Bennett. Currently I am a sophomore at University of South Carolina Upstate in Spartanburg, South Carolina majoring in Business Administration. Once I get my BA in Business Administration, I plan to attend the University of South Carolina in Columbia, SC and major in MA in Human Resources. After obtaining my graduate degree, I would like to work in the Human Resources department of a large corporation or non-profit organization.

My first year in college was a wonderful experience because I received a quality education, while meeting lifelong friends. If there was one thing I can say I had to work on, it was managing my time – thankfully I am a quick learner! My favorite part of college was meeting new people and being independent. The most challenging part of college was learning that not all teachers are the same.

During my spare time I love to read, talk on the phone and hang out with my friends.

I just would love to thank you for allowing me to receive this scholarship. You were truly a blessing to me and my family and I can not thank you enough!

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