Ok guys, I have to be 100% honest with you. I have COMPLETELY fallen off the eating healthy bandwagon. It started off with forgetting to take my lunch to work and then being so busy that I’d have to pick up something from the grill at the airport or fast food. Then the weather became cooler and my mild love of Starbucks became a wild obsession. I tried to order healthier i.e. avoid the really sugary syrups or just have cream. I realized however that even ordering half the syrup in my favorite drink and nonfat milk (ok with the whipped cream) wasn’t helping me on my caloric intake. I gained a few pounds. Nothing crazy, but when you are only 5ft tall. 5 lbs looks like ten. I also stopped working out like I had been in the past thinking that the physical labor involved in my job, lifting heavy bags, running, taking the stairs etc, would make up for that. Trust me it doesn’t. I thought I was taking good care of my body but on Sunday even after really stretching and preparing to be in the cargo bin of an aircraft stacking bags, I did something terrible to my right shoulder.
It didn’t hurt at first. There was a loud pop and some tingling in my right hand but as the day went on it began to hurt to lift my shoulder. Then my right pinky finger became swollen and numb. As soon as I left work, I went straight to urgent care. I didn’t want to go and it took my supervisors, friends, and parents to convince me I needed to be seen. So here I sit, in a sling, typing one handed because I’ve apparently injured my rotator cuff. Misery. End of story. It doesn’t appear as if I’ll have to have surgery but I may have to have an injection or two and some physical therapy. It is a huge reminder that I’m not getting any younger and that I have to start taking better care of myself.
With the end goal of living full time on the boat, I started researching some ways to stay actively working out. A major part of living aboard is discovering how you can fit your life into such a small space. So I wanted to share some tips of what I do and what I hope to be incorporating soon.
The biggest hurdle to overcome in my opinion is just getting started. Most people when they think of working out think of the gym. That’s not always an option when living aboard. Here are a few suggestions and tips that I hope you’ll find useful at sea or land.
The easiest exercise to do is something that you love or enjoy. Think of swimming or if you’re in port, walking.
Make sure you set aside a specific time and try to stick to that schedule. Just like I have a sleep schedule, I also have an exercise schedule. I really attempt to stick to that schedule as best as possible so that it’s routine. I also try to find healthy ways to reward myself for sticking to the plan!
Have a routine that’s easy to follow and doesn’t get boring and find a friend to keep you accountable or to pass the time with.
Put your jam on! Thankful my neighbors in the marina don’t live aboard otherwise they might not appreciate my workout music vibe! But find music that motivates you. Maybe it’s the Rocky theme song, or in my case early 2000’s rock but find it and get moving.
Yoga is a great exercise to incorporate into any lifestyle. I find that I’m able to use my body weight for the workout and there’s definitely room on the bow of the Rialto Zephyr to lay out my mat. I love yoga. I was a pretty active practitioner until I moved to the South. It wasn’t really a big thing here but is slowly catching on with all the trendy hipsters moving into the area. Thanks Hipsters! I also incorporate some calisthenics into the routine. Planks, lunges, sit ups, crunches (God I hate crunches) tricep dips, you know the things you hated about gym class, can easily be done on the mat as well.
Don’t forget that eating healthy is important as well. I no longer follow any diet fad these days but try to live more by a guideline. Low sugar, fresh produce, low dairy (even though I LOVE cheese) and no processed food. Sometimes that can be a challenge if you are at sea. I recommend taking fruits and veggies that hold for the long haul. I find that when I’m living on the boat, I tend to eat smaller meals which is also a major plus for me. And McDonald’s hasn’t built a float thru driveway to my knowledge YET. The jury is out on whether Starbucks has considered this option. In that case I might be in trouble.
Find what works for you and stick to the routine.
And don’t forget that staying active, fit and healthy is important but nursing our mind and body is as well.