Disclaimer: I was compensated for my participation in Coca-Cola’s Balanced Living Workshop, but my thoughts and views are my own.
Pre-family I was a svelte size 8 actively working in the fashion industry. I worked hard, loved life and embraced everything with vigor. Dancing, swimming, workouts, eating well, were just simply life. I also grew up with parents who served lots of vegetables and fish during meals and has a father who ran a couple of miles every single morning and sometimes even tagged us along. My now 71 year old father up to this day still wakes up every 5am in the morning to do Tai-Chi. Because we lived and breathed it, the word “nutrition” was never a topic I ever dealt with.
That word – “nutrition” became an emphasis when the kids started coming along. I was lost and confused and just simply tired. It is all about the kids now. All suddenly a totem pole erected. As each child was given life to this family, I went down that totem pole. The last time that I consciously watched what I ate and did to keep healthy was when I was pregnant with each child. Which is really because of them inside of me so maybe that doesn’t even really count when positioning myself on top of that totem pole again.
I’m pretty sure I’m not any different from all the other moms out there. We simply do not have enough time to dedicate to ourselves. In most cases too, not enough time to learn about nutritional values to shop for the right food, doing the right exercise, and all that encompasses more time away from doing the normal get up, get the fastest things to get the children to school, take them to school, clean or leave for work, pick them up, feed them he fastest things you can find, drop in bed and then start all over again the next day.
Taking part of the #CCBalancedLiving was simply getting me to change the way I think about taking care of myself. A crash course on what to do, when to do, and what not to do. Exactly what I needed!
Happily peeled away from our family, I shipped out to the Conrad Chicago Hotel for an intensive 2 days of learning / re-learning. While I was ready and gung-ho into learning new things to re-invent myself, I just simply realized to get rid of the totem pole and start from the basics again. Live like how we lived as my parents did. Not such a novel idea, but with all the high-tech modern way of life, I succumbed to so many latest and greatest that I forgot that there were no fixing needed in that part.
I learned that for me to be successful in this journey, I have to allow to create a tunnel vision of what would I’d like to see myself be as a healthy person. We were given a blank cardboard to cut out & paste and make our own vision board. It was the simplest of all segment in our 2 days of #CCBalancedLiving, but it is one that stayed with me the most.
Beyond reading the labels in grocery aisles (which is by the way very important!), and the new learned exercises, I walked away knowing that one day I want fab hair, luscious skin, dare to bare bod, more travel, more gardening, and more importantly, more sex. Hey, don’t we all?
With keeping my vision board in mind…I am jumping aboard with all of the other things I learned from the event.
Photo Credits: The Coca-Cola Company and Bruce Powell Photography
Make sure to check out the other blogs/bloggers that participated in the #CCBalancedLiving Event
About the Author: Head Chicagonista, Co-host of the Chicagonista LIVE! show, Lead blogger for TheChicagoMoms.com, and Co-Founder of Women Driving Excellence. MJ is also the annual host of SocialRevUp - Brands & Bloggers Summit (#bbsummit) attended by about 200 professional high-profile bloggers nationwide. Follow MJ on Twitter: @mjtam