Friday, December 7, 2012

What is healthy?

Healthy. I hear the word all the time and I definitely use it a lot. What does it mean to you?

Does it mean, working out? How about, eating clean - i.e. eating less minimally processed food or less boxed items or more veggies? What about visiting your doctor or dentist for your annual or bi-annual visit?

In my opinion, living a healthy life has so many components. Working out/training, sleep, nutrition, stress, work/job, professional and personal relationships. Of course, these factors can be in any order but what I think is important is the quality of each.

I was talking with my dad, Roberto, the other night about sleep. We were discussing what I considered 'good sleep'. It made me think a little deeper about the sleep I get and if it is really good sleep. He spoke about the quality of sleep, am I sleeping the entire time or do I wake up throughout the night? I realized that if I sleep through the night, I feel better and I am more refreshed.

I admit, I am not getting a full 8 hours of sleep every night. Some nights I can get the 8 hours I want, other nights I may only get 6 1/2 hours. For example, Wednesday nights: I work until 7pm, drive home, arrive around 7:30pm. I will get ready for the next day, pack my food, shower, clean up, get clothes ready and then turn in for the night. If Alex is around, he helps me and that is amazing because it allows me to hopefully go to bed sooner. My goal every Monday and Wednesday night: 8:30pm. Actual time that I hit the bed: 9pm-ish. I wish I could just pass out as soon as my head hits that pillow but after training and coaching, it still takes me a little bit to unwind. So it is more around 9:30pm some nights.

Why do I go to bed this early on Wednesday? I coach early Thursday mornings, with a 3:50am wake up call. I am smiling/laughing right now because I can probably see some people's eyes wide open and their jaw drop. Yeah, it's really early and not the average wake up time for most people, but I love what I do and in order to do it with full attention, I have to go to bed early. This is important to me.

So there was small tangent right there, but my point was to show that a lot of thought and energy goes into my sleep and what is important to have 'good sleep' for me. Every person is different but I believe sleep is important to your recovery and daily activity. Add in long hours of training and it is very imperative to performing well.

In regards to the other aspects of living a healthy life: relationships, work, nutrition, stress - minimal stress that is, you should look at each aspect and define what healthy is to you. From my perspective, having a life that is balanced is very important. I try and find balance every day, reevaluating each component and making sure that I feel stable and am enjoying life at the same time.

I used to stress a lot about stuff, big and little things. I would always make sure to get things done right away. This definitely served me, I was on top of all my 'to-do lists' but then I was always looking at the next item on the list, verses enjoying what I just accomplished. Ask my mom and dad and even my sister. They all could definitely tell you stories :)

I have learned a lot and have 'chilled out' more from my life experiences and the people in my life. Thank you to everyone who has taught me something. I am living a healthier life each day. Find your healthy and live it.

One last note... I have updated my website: www.mcafitness.com, and if you have a chance to glance through it and share your thoughts, I would greatly appreciate it. Thank you!

~ MCA