Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Baby Steps to a Happy Heart v.2

An ongoing list of steps I'm building to nurture a happy heart...
3.  Get moving...
I go through phases with exercise.  Some weeks I love it, feeling energized and 
renewed after I work up a sweat.  At other times, I feel drained before I even step foot 
in the gym, arguing with my subconscious about why I should NOT have to exercise 
today.  But I keep trying, every single week, I try to get moving.  Even on those days 
when all I want to do is get home from work and curl up into a ball and sleep for just a 
few minutes, I try to get moving.  Because the reality is that exercise is good for me,
 it makes me feel better and keeps my body healthy.  Stretching, running, lifting 
weights, yoga, dancing: it all leads to a stronger, happier version of me.  Three times a 
week, one hour at a time, I go to the gym and spend time strengthening and toning my 
body.  With a full time job and a family depending on me, those three days sometimes 
feel like a big sacrifice.  But it's a commitment that I feel resolved to, knowing the feeling 
I get as soon as those endorphins kick in.  No matter how much I might dread walking
 into that gym, I know how awesome I will feel once I get there.  On the other days of 
the week, I try to get moving at home with my family: bike rides, hiking, frisbee in the 
yard, anything to get us all moving together.  Burning energy in a healthy way keeps us 
all a little more sane, and that is a good thing.
4.  Go outside...
I am a born and raised country girl and feel most at home with my bare feet in the grass 
and the sun on my face.  The love for the great outdoors that Shawn and I share is 
the reason we moved home to our little town on the bayou after Isabelle was born: 
we wanted our babies to have the room to run wild.  We wanted the opportunity to have 
home with a big open yard, we wanted the space to grow a garden or two or three, 
we wanted to spend time in nature appreciating the beauty that surrounds us.  Most 
days, you'll find this little family outside, reluctantly packing up our things and heading 
into the house only as the sun sets.  Being outdoors is medicine for my soul, lifting my 
mood and filling my heart with positive feelings.  When I am feeling sad or overwhelmed 
or tired or stressed,  I grab my gardening gloves and head outside to my flowers and 
herbs.  I strap Brees on the back of my bike and ride.  I sit on my back porch with a cup
 of tea and a good book.  After an hour or two of fresh air and sunshine, my troubles
 usually don't seem as big as they did before.  Being outdoors, with the birds in my ears 
and the trees blowing their branches in tune with the wind, life seems to take on a 
much more simple, beautiful form.
A few photos from this last weekend with my in-laws in which we moved and played and 
sat outside for hours, making all of our hearts so happy...





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Marie V said...

Love your photos Olivia, so many nice moments shared. Being out, I think it is what I miss living in a flat. Every time I feel overwhelmed I take my coat and go for a walk. I would enjoy a garden, a good book, a cup of tea or coffee, running around or do some yoga outdoors, in my space. 
This is often what I asked my husband for when he says what would you like to have in your next home - a big kitchen and a garden!!!
Have a lovely day dear! xx

Megan @ Mackeymadness said...

I agree...there is something SO healing/comforting/uplifting in being outside! Gorgeous pictures!!

Olivia said...

Thank you!!  I had some pretty gorgeous subjects:)

Olivia said...

A big kitchen and a garden: that's what I always wanted, too!!  

Randalin said...

Going outside ALWAYS makes me feel better! I cannot wait for nicer weather so we can spend more time out there! 

Olivia said...

It really is so uplifting!!  So good for your soul and good for those babies!!