Finding Balance

Finding balance is hard.

I had a conversation on Twitter yesterday and I was telling a follower how I can never go “all in” with one activity. Rather, I always choose to keep up with all of them, meaning that I never am truly good at anything. Case in point? Training for this 55k. Getting all my runs in has been a struggle because I keep going to CrossFit, keep skiing, keeping exploring the backcountry and–oh yeah–keep running. I completed my last long run yesterday {16.2 miles} and instead of finishing with a smile, I found myself asking, “Did I do enough? Am I ready for this race?”

That’s no bueno.

This push to do everything carries over into my daily life too. When our company closes for the winter, I can’t just sit back, relax and take it easy for three months {truthfully, that would be boring!} Instead, I focus on my writing. This winter, I’ve experienced a lot of success in that arena and have regularΒ articles due every 3-4 days, in addition to anything I post on my lil’ blog. Sure, that schedule is fantastic now when I’m not working the day job, but what will happen when we start back up in March? How will I maintain that writing schedule when I’m running a business, planning a wedding, nurturing a relationship and taking care of an adorable-yet-neurotic dog?

Tals

Love this face! PC: Will Rochfort

It’s definitely possible, but it could be easier. And I need to cut myself some slack and remember that downtime is just as productive as frantic typing or four hours on the trail.

Will and I chatted about this a few weeks ago since he is even busier than me. As a result, we headed up to Steamboat Springs last night for an extended weekend getaway. We didn’t invite any friends and we even left Tals behind; it’s just the two of us. Winter Carnival is in full effect in this mountain town and we planned a long weekend of skiing, eating, watching the events, and simply spending time together. {Side note: I’m definitely excited for the shovel event! Apparently grown adults sit on a shovel and a horse pulls them down Main Street….sounds like carnage!}

2014-will-heather-6557

Looking forward to spending time with this guy! PC: Julie Ellison

I don’t care if my Garmin vivofit starts flashing red, telling me I’ve been sedentary for too long. And I don’t care if I *maybe* inhaled an entire bag of chocolate chip cookies last night in an attempt to satiate my long-run-induced appetite. Yes, my lungs will suffer a bit but sometimes, finding balance is all about letting go. And I’m cool with that!

This is the final post in a six-part series sponsored by Garmin and Whole Foods Market as part of their #PathtoFit program. The views and opinions expressed above are my own. If you want to join in on the fun, use the above hashtag on social media to share your upcoming goals!

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How do you find balance in life?

 

31 Comments

  • Reply Sara from Sweden at

    With regards to your sporty lifestyle: maybe it’s a good thing not go all in? I’ve seen way to many injuries from people who get keen on running a race and then just keep running as a way of getting fit and ready for that race event. And if you don’t get injured from doing the same thing over and over, it will kill your motivation. At least that’s the way I am. I rarely get injured from doing the same stuff over and over (like running) because I simply don’t do it. I get too bored! I participate in races and long distance running, last summer I did a 50k trail adventure, but I believe that all the other things I do: like roadbiking and skiing and snowshoe adventuring, also forms a good base on which I stand on – ready to take on everything.

    Now if I would participate in something and really compete, like having a time to beat or so, then it’s a different matter altogether. But who cares about hours, minutes and seconds when you risk to miss out on the adventure, the scenery and the experience itself?

    • Reply heather at

      I think it is. I’ve learned that I burn out if I try to ONLY run or ONLY CrossFit–the range of activity keeps me healthier. It also stresses me out from time to time πŸ™‚

  • Reply Art at

    It’s funny that you talk about how you do so many things so you’re not great at any. It makes me think of the Malcolm Gladwell book “Outliers” and his theory that one needs to do about 10,000 hours of deliberate practice at something to really be an expert at it. Maybe expert wasn’t the word, maybe it was genius, I’m not sure. Of course, I want to be an expert at everything I do, but the day is not nearly long enough for me to cram in all of my interests. I am finding that balance is the key, but it’s also one of the hardest things to swallow. Down time is important, yes, but doesn’t it feel like it’s at the expense of something? Even time spent working on a goal can feel at the expense of another. Maybe that was your point. I have been lucky, though, in that my life has changed to force me into a long train commute every day. This fits nicely with my goal to read more, and more specifically to read 52 books this year. It looks like I’ll beat that pretty easily because of my commute. So, I find balance by having no choice in one part of my day and checking off a big goal during that time. Then, I can section off my other free time into different goals and feel as though I am not losing track in any one thing. But I have to keep my goals clear and to reduce the number of those! It’s been great so far.

    • Reply heather at

      Downtime often feels like I’m “wasting” time but that’s the exact mindset I’m trying to get rid of. We’re back home now and both Will and I keep saying how nice this weekend was and how refreshed we feel as a result. Clearly, downtime helps! πŸ™‚

  • Reply Axel (@apkussma) at

    I feel the same way. So many hobbies seem to demand exclusivity and can’t be done in a dabbling way (Crossfit strikes me like this, I don’t know how you manage!). Sometimes I get down about it, but at the end of the day, dabbling in a little of this a little of that; be it exercise (swim/bike/run/ski/weights/yoga/etc.) blog writing (I have two!) or even couch surfing (sitcom with the wife, or super-hero movie?) is what makes me happy, and I’ve always been like that.

    • Reply heather at

      CrossFit is definitely NOT like this! I think the stereotypical image of the sports makes it seem that way but honestly, for me, it’s the most beneficial to work it in halftime with other stuff. That way, I can see the benefits in other walks of life rather than just saying, “Oh hey, I’m getting better at..CrossFit!” Of course, this is just my two cents πŸ™‚

  • Reply Mattie @ Comfy & Confident at

    I totally relate! I work full -time at my day job and that itself is exhausting, but the things I love – writing, blogging, exercising, running, skiing, my husband- are hard to juggle. You will figure it all out, somehow it always works itself out. But, I think I could use a weekend away, that sounds lovely!

    • Reply heather at

      It was pretty awesome and totally needed!

  • Reply Hayley@healthyregardshayley at

    Aw I love this, you two are so cute! Balance is hard. I try to find balance however by making sure to mix up my routine, I can get in the “do the exact same thing every day” routine = no balance = no bueno.

    • Reply heather at

      I bet. And thanks– I kinda like the guy πŸ™‚

  • Reply Kovas - Midwest Multisport Life at

    Balance is what I struggle most with in life, but one of these days…

    • Reply heather at

      Ha, that’s what I keep telling myself too!

  • Reply Christine @ Love, Life, Surf at

    Love this Heather and totally get it! First off, you and Will are too cute. Love that picture of your two. I can’t go all in with any one activity or really any one thing. I love having that variety in my life and I think that in some ways that helps me find balance.

    • Reply heather at

      Thanks Christine! I sometimes wish I could focus on ONE thing and really try to succeed at it but then other times, I remember that’s not how I function πŸ™‚

  • Reply CARLA at

    YES!!!!
    Im not too too religious but the very notion of LET GO LET G-D has always resonated with me.
    xo

  • Reply RFC at

    Ahhhh balance, such an illusive word in my life! I totally get what you mean about training. I realized long ago that I will NEVER be an elite athlete, so instead I do what I ENJOY. Which means I run when I should be cross training, I lift weights when I should be running, I put an OCR a few weeks before a big marathon that I should be tapering for. I’ve found following my “life is short” intuition helps: rest when I need it, unplug when I want to, and just GO when I feel up to it.

    PLEASE tell me there will be pictures of the horse/shovel rides!

    • Reply heather at

      Oh, and yes– shovel photos/carnage to come!

  • Reply Angela @ Happy Fit Mama at

    The mysterious balance! I’ve come to believe that there is no such thing. Why fight it? Life it meant to be a constant seesaw of up and down. It keeps it interesting and on my toes. BTW – love the pic of you and Will. So cute! And horse/shovel rides sounds like a perfect balance. πŸ˜‰

    • Reply heather at

      Haha oh man– wait til you see photos of the shovel event. It was CRAZY!

  • Reply Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine at

    This is so important to realize! It is okay to have downtime and savor every moment, taking care and doing what we need. When things pick back up it will only propel us forward with all the power we need! XOXO

    • Reply heather at

      To me, you hit the nail on the head: if you’re too busy or mentally stressed to enjoy what you’re doing at that moment, something needs to give!

  • Reply Sandra Laflamme at

    Finding balance . . . ah, this is the holy grail. Just when I find sort of semblance of balance chaos ensues. I guess you have to embrace it all and do what you love and try not to stress. Easier said than done. Right? You will be great in your race and you will conquer all of your other challenges and tasks. Great inspiring post Heather!

    • Reply heather at

      Thanks Sandra! Of course, now I’m starting to stress about the race… πŸ™‚ T-minus 12 days and counting!

  • Reply Paula at

    Hi, are we twins? πŸ˜€

    Haha! I’ve been struggling with this lately too. I’m finding, though, that the more I say no to extra things the more I enjoy what I’m doing! My cut-off is always when I’m so busy that I stop enjoying what I’m doing, I’m too busy!

    • Reply heather at

      Truth! Have y’all started wedding planning yet? Wait til that rolls down the tracks! I kept thinking we had tons of time…until we didn’t!

  • Reply Anne at

    You guys are so precious. Also, just want to point out the irony that you’re talking about balance and spending a weekend away… while blogging about it during your vacay πŸ˜‰

    • Reply heather at

      Haha touche, my friend! But, to be fair, the Garmin/Whole Foods campaign had deadlines for posts and I was about to hit mine! The computer was packed away for the rest of the trip πŸ™‚

  • Reply Rachel at

    Oh my how I love this post… as I am striving to find balance (even if it were for a day… or an hour in my day). And yes… by the way… you two are ADORABLY cute. AND… I totally love my UD pack too πŸ™‚

  • Reply Kayla @ kpLOVINGit at

    Oh Em Gee!!! This is the first time I’ve gotten on blogger in a LONG time!!!! I’ve missed you!

    What is balance?!?! lol. Just kidding. I feel like in the last 9 months, every time I start getting my bearings on life, another rug gets pulled out from under me. I’m very slowly starting to find my balance, emphasis being on slowly.

    I’m glad you and Will are taking the time to get away together. Y’all deserve some fun time alone!

    • Reply heather at

      I noticed you’ve been missing— but you always have a baby πŸ™‚ That’s a busy job!! Love seeing his adorable face on FB!

  • Reply Logan at

    Oh man, I have been struggling with this lately! Mostly my problem is finally being back in Colorado and wanting to say yes to ALL THE ADVENTURES! I have to keep reminding myself that I live here now…I don’t have to pack it ALL in RIGHT NOW, even though I want to! As much fun as it is, it’s leaving me exhausted and without time to do some of the things that also really matter (like finding a job to replace the one that ends in 2.5 weeks..ahhhhh…).

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