We are each our own biggest critic. Before I begin this post, it is important that I lay the ground work. #SAfit is about being your healthiest self: physically, emotionally, and socially. #SAfit is about focusing on your own self-confidence and knowing that you are preparing your mind and body to face the day.
You can always find someone in student affairs who seems to have it all and do it all. You are connected with them on social media. They seem to be a successful marathon runner. They are completing their 60th day of Whole 30 and enjoying the kale in the process. Their laundry is always finished and they actually enjoy cleaning their shower. #SAfit isn’t about comparing ourselves to others or chasing perfection. #SAfit means feeling that you are in the best state of balance. It will give you a clear mind and body to be your best self for the students and campus you serve.
So how do we achieve this elusive balance?
Think in small achievable blocks of time. Plan your day to find the time and space to be selfish about your health. It could be as simple as adding in two 10 minute breaks a day to do ½ mile loops around campus. If it’s raining or snowing outside, you can explore the student center and stay dry and warm. An added bonus is that colleagues and students will see you out and about and you may connect with individuals with whom you haven’t previously connected!
For the more hardcore exercise blocks, I try to do a 3-mile run during lunch once a week. I fit in a 30-minute workout video after my baby goes to sleep. I also try to do at least one 30-minute session per week at the school gym while my partner is picking up our child from daycare.
For healthy meal options, my partner and I plan four meals we will cook each week. I plan a meal more than 24 hours in advance so I can break it up the tasks into smaller chunks. I’ll cut up the veggies the night before and marinate the chicken before work. We also have a “bank” of 10 easy meals that we can cook quickly that are also healthy. Once a week, we also incorporate a new, simple recipe to avoid getting bored.
We all have “it’s just not going to work” moments.
It’s been raining for days. Your work schedule doesn’t allow for bathroom breaks, let alone lunch breaks. Your kid needs to be picked up from daycare, but as a #stuconduct pro, you are struggling to get out off the phone with a parent at 5:30PM. It’s 8:30PM and you are not insane enough to do Insanity. Or, my absolute favorite, the duty phone calls. So these are the nights where a quick ab workout will have to do and “eater’s choice” is on the menu for dinner.
#SAfit is truly about being selfish in all the right ways.
As a live-on professional, Director of Student Conduct, administrator on call, nursing mother of a 5-month-old, and partner to a student activities, student affairs professional, there are days where I know 30 minutes of exercise and a healthy dinner after a long day at work are the best ways for me to be the most present for my family. We owe it to our colleagues, students, family, and most of all ourselves to strive to be #SAfit. I want my 5-month-old to see his #stuconduct mom as patient, confident, loving, and happy. This is even the case on days I feel like I am running as fast as I can but I’m not making any strides towards my “destination”.
#SAfit isn’t about the number on the scale or winning the fitbit workweek hustle. Rather, it is about carving out a little time so we can be the healthiest version of ourselves.
This post is part of our #SAfit series for April. With the constant hustle and bustle of our profession, we can’t forget to put ourselves at the top of our to-do list sometimes. It is essential that we remember to take time for self care and this series highlights how our colleagues work #SAfit into their lifestyles. This can look different for each of us and your journey is your own. For more info, please see Mandi Stewart’s intro post. Be sure to check out the other posts in this series too!