2022 · health · Julie's Journey

Hiking the Health – My Way

Making my way up an incline at Arches National Park March 2022.                                                       📷 Paige V.

Traveling uphill has always been a difficult thing for me to do. Most of the time I am lagging behind my husband & daughter.  My mindset usually in a bad place. Angry- at myself and them to be honest.

In July of 2020 we went hiking near Manhattan, KS.  That hike was an embarrassing moment for me. It wasn’t too huge of an incline but for an out of shape, over weight, injured ankle almost 50 yr old woman trying to keep up with the others it was hard. The Kansas temperature didn’t help either.

The reason it was embarrassing for me mostly is because I ended up having to lay down on the ground once I hit the top. I seriously thought I was having a heart attack or something, my daughter watched. That’s the embarrassing part. I felt like such a failure in those moments and following.

I know what I did wrong & what others did wrong on that hike.

I didn’t want to be in a place like that again if possible.

I didn’t jump into action quickly though. By the end of the year I had ankle surgery which meant time to heal. Less walking and patience in healing.  I still wasn’t eating better. By August 2021 I’d had enough with my choices & knew I wanted to enjoy March 2022 hiking vacation to Utah.

So I took what I knew about myself, also what I’d learned in my diabetic education and made minor changes to my eating. I set goals, made a vision board, joined a text health deal for support, got back on the elliptical, made sleep a priority and started putting me somewhat first.

I’m now a 51 yr old woman, still overweight but making more confident choices, 12 pounds lighter, hormones in check (with bioidentical hormones), mentally better but at times I’m not. The key is that I bounce back quicker and  am more independent.

Things I changed  in my mindset:

Stop waiting for others to support you – it won’t happen.    Support yourself.

Apply the little things to create successes in your mind & health.

Going slow is okay.

Celebrate your success even if it’s small.

As I hiked  during our vacation in Utah, I found myself thinking about a couple things.

“I could be doing this 12 lbs heavier, how would that feel?” I’d smile and think of how proud of myself I was.

Also how I don’t have to go as fast as others. I need to do what works for me and if that is taking that incline slower, so be it. I’m still a winner. I’m still here, doing something hard and reaching the end still standing. They can wait on me.

I’m showing my daughter that change can happen in small increments & make life better. That my reaction to a circumstance doesn’t always have to be dramatic and emotional from me.  (although I think showing emotions is essential in life.)

The hikes were wonderful, hard for me at times and easy in moments. But what I loved most was how I felt being out in nature physically moving.  How it fed me.

Most of my life I’ve lived to care for others, being somewhat codependent and not figuring out what I really want in life. The past 1.5 years has been a slow journey to change some of that. I’ll always be a “caretaker ” but I’m learning it’s okay to care for myself too or even first.   That it’s okay to take the time to create my own dreams, even if that means pursuing them alone. Creating goals and dreams for the life I want to live.

The past part was written in April 2022. I’m now going to add to it and publish it and it’s July 2022.

In May of 2022 I started back working more on the mental part of my health. I had made choices before then that benefited me but sometimes people need help. People need assistance in moving forward. I’m there. I’m moving forward.

I’ll be honest, I’ve done the elliptical once in the past two months. Even though it now sits smack dab in the middle of my quilt room and I see it daily. The garage got too hot with the Kansas summer. I’ve ate more candy than usual since our Omaha trip in early July and my jeans aren’t quite as loose. But ya know what. I still walk daily and get 10,000 steps usually. And and on the days I do not, I’m okay with it now. I don’t beat myself up because I have made effort and change. Since 2017 I have lost a total of 32 pounds and kept the majority off.

I eat veggies first before other stuff on my plate and drink alot of water too. In fact, I don’t drink anything else. I had to give up decaf coffee even due to another health issue. There is so much to celebrate about where I am and where I’m going that I just decided I don’t want to be stuck in the same ol’ same ol’ anymore.

It’s been a slow going way. It’s been a uphill climb and a super easy slide down at times but you know what. That’s okay because it’s my way.

Take it your way folks – just be kind, open minded with yourself and others and think before you proceed but not for too long. 🙂

Thanks for stopping by!

Julie

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