My Best Health and Fitness Decisions

Last week’s training was full of lessons and discoveries, so it was appropriately timed that today’s Fit Dish linkup’s topic was the top 5 all time best health and fitness decisions.  It’s going to be hard to narrow it down to what’s had the biggest impact because I feel like I’m still learning and becoming the best version of me when it comes to being healthy and fit.

I’ll pull a page from David Letterman’s book and work my way backward.

So here’s the:

Top 5 All Time Best Health and Fitness Decisions

#5: Listening to my body

From the first onset of calf pain after hill repeats back in 2010, I should have listened and took a break.  That pain was the start of a eventual stress fracture.  From that moment on, I knew that the key to staying injury free was listening to my body and to not push it if my body was telling me otherwise.  That was a smart decision because I’ve been blessed to be injury free since then and even added in a run streak.  I’m still in tune with my body and listening. 

#4: Running for Life

Since my decision to start running for life, I’ve felt this huge weight lifted off my shoulders.  I still have goals and plans for myself but my focus has changed.  I want to be that 80+ year old woman who is still running marathons.  I have to treat my body kindly and with love now so that I can do that later.  I’m having more fun now than I ever did!   Part of that process also involves reset training which involves heart rate training.  I can just feel myself become stronger and healthier.  I could not continue to bounce from one hard training to the next.

#3: Stretching, Rolling, and Cross Training

I’m kind of lumping in all non-running things into this category.  When I first started running, I was all about the miles.  I was like a kid in a candy store and the roads were always calling me.  Part of the reason I became injured in 2010 had to do with not taking the time to stretch or cross-train.  I just wanted to run.  Since then, I realized that even though I love running, I have to add in stretching and rolling as part of my daily routine.  I stretch nightly before I go to bed now. I roll as needed, mostly after long runs.  Cross training is now part of my fitness plan and includes most strength training.  I take classes at the Y, take part in a daily 2 min plank challenge, and videos at home, if I don’t feel like hitting the gym.  I have to learn how to balance it all, but the end results are worth it.

#2: Surrounding Myself with Support and Inspiring Others

I took that first step towards running a half marathon by myself and it was scary.  Nick was with me the whole step of the way with training and so supportive!  After coming across the finish line in OBX in 2009, I was hooked!  Everyone had to feel the way I was feeling.  After some convincing, I had 2 friends who were willing to start training for a half in 2010.  The 3 of us ran the Flying Pirate half!  By 2011, there were 7 of us at Flying Pirate.  Our running group continued to grow and there are probably 30 of us, not to mention tons of friends in several other running groups.  Some of our girls’ trips have had as many as 10 girls going!  It’s been the most unexpected thing to me!  When I first started running for me, I didn’t realize that it would actually bring me to a supportive group of friends (runners) who inspire me daily.  may

and finally…

#1: Quitting Smoking

This decision started it all!  By finally realizing that I had to make a change, a big one, to get my health headed in the right direction. This would ultimately bring me to where I am today and still moving towards in the future.  I’ve met some of my greatest friends through running.  I love myself and what I’m capable of doing.  I feel stronger in mind, body and soul.  I’m a role model to my daughter and showing her that even as a mom, you have to take time for yourself.  Running makes me a better person.  I wouldn’t have gotten here without that one decision on December 27, 2008, over 6 years ago, to stop smoking.

What’s your best health and fitness decision? Share it with me!

Hop over to the Fit Dish link up, Jill Conyers at, & Jessica Joy at,  and see what other bloggers are sharing!

Happy Week!

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14 thoughts on “My Best Health and Fitness Decisions

  1. Awesome! I should have included quitting smoking too! I totally forgot about it because I quit in 2009, and when I think about ever having been a smoker I really can’t believe it! I also agree with listening to your body and surrounding yourself with support and inspiring others. These are all so important ad it’s so great that you have made them a part of your life! Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  2. I never would have pinned you as the smoker type. Congrats for quitting such an addicting habit. Much like you listening to my body and “NOT” a training schedule has allowed me to take my running to a new level and cut way down on down time caused by injuries. And since I’m no longer a spring chicken anymore haha lol 😛 stretching, rolling, and recovery are a must-do!! That’s the only way I can keep up with these young whipper snapper runners in these races lol 🙂

  3. Well hello, running stud! I love your passion for it, and I love how much you respect your body. Bravo. So excited for all your adventures, and seeing your running group really inspires me. What a blast! Thanks so much for linking up, #fitfamlove

  4. I just wrote a comment, but it may have gotten deleted. boo. But, what I said was, you a running super star. Look at you go! I love how much you love running, and how you respect your body. Thanks for the inspiration! I really want to get a big group together for a race now. What a blast! #fitfamlove

  5. I’m very happy that you quit smoking! I know from friends who have gone through that how hard it can be, but you’re right, it’s the #1 best decision for your health! I love running friends- I’ve made so many more friends since I started running and racing. The best thing is that we can have non-stop running conversations and they don’t look at me like they want me to stop talking!

  6. I’m reallyyy bad with #5, because I always feel like I should be able to do more, but I’m learning to listen to myself! Totally with you on #2–having support makes such a big difference!

    And best for last, #1–I’m so, so happy and proud of you (and I’m sure your daughter is too)! That is a huge, huge accomplishment!

  7. Listening to the body is HUGE and so many of us go-getters forget that it is okay to take a break when your body needs one! Great post… and congrats on quitting smoking. That is HUGE and hard to do. My brother has tried over 10 times, but goes back to them every so often. Hopefully one day he will quit for good!

  8. Loved everything about this post and like you I want to be running for a long time. I am a late bloomer as I didn’t start til my 40s and have only been running almost 3 years.

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