It says something about the way that 2019 has begun that I’m writing this blog post in February!
2019 has started off busy – in a good way!
I’ve welcomed a couple of new Online Coaching clients. I’m always excited about the opportunity to change people’s lives through a healthier lifestyle.
Although I managed to give myself a mild rotator cuff tear when I fell skiing in the first week of January, my rehab is progressing well and I’ve been able to work around it in my weight training sessions.
This post represents a look back at 2018 and a plan for moving forward.
It might give you some ideas for what you want to achieve.
If you’re wondering how things were looking as I started 2018, check out My Year End Review of 2017.
Growing As He Grows
My son Kai turned four in 2018 and started Junior Kindergarten in the Fall. While the transition wasn’t as seamless as we expected (no more naps…yikes!), he’s now settled into the JK life.
This autumn he did kung fu classes and in January he went back to his weekly ice skating classes.
He also started going to Czech classes on Saturdays and began doing acrobatics once a week too.
As my son takes on more activities, I’ve done my best to keep learning new things as well.
I’ve been working on my ice skating skills. Although I’ve been skating since I was a kid, I got a lot better in the last few months just because we went skating so often (probably a dozen times this season so far).
Those backwards moves are looking more confident!
Too many parents sign their kids up for activities and classes several days a week, without giving a thought to their own development.
Life isn’t over because you’re a parent or because you hit a certain age.
I’m continuing to develop my Czech skills. Although I was born in Prague, I stopped speaking Czech when I was five and I never learned to read or write. I’ve been working on learning the Czech language since around the time my son was born.
I’m currently using the free language app Duolingo, which I highly recommend.
In December, I started learning piano, after finally finding an app that I like, SimplyPiano. Apart from recorder as a child and a depressing year with the trombone in middle school (envision the sound of irritable elephants), I haven’t had experience with musical instruments. So it’s a fun mental task for me to learn music.
Keep Learning, Stay Young
I loved THIS POST about a 65-year-old Norwegian woman who took up skateboarding at 61. She’s also recently taken up acrobatics and graphite art.
Sounds like my kind of woman!
It’s so inspiring to see people in their 60s pushing the boundaries, when many people as young as 35 or 40 have already given up.
When you consider yourself too old to do something, that’s when amazing opportunities for joy and self-development disappear.
What are you working on for 2019?
What do you want to try or get better at?
Your life isn’t all about your child(ren), or at least it shouldn’t be.
Your personal health and achievements need to be priorities too.
Health Issues And Solutions
As healthy as I try to be, like most people I still have my share of health issues.
I’ve suffered from GERD and IBS for over twenty years.
I tried the FODMAP Diet for IBS in 2018 without success.
After a CT scan of my sinuses proved clear, the ENT doctor told me the incessant coughing I’d been experiencing was acid travelling up my esophagus from GERD.
Early in 2018 I tried giving up dairy, reducing chocolate, and limiting caffeine to one cup of tea a day in order to control my GERD symptoms.
It didn’t help.
After two decades and endless diets, I haven’t found any dietary measure that eliminates my GERD (although spicy and greasy foods can certainly make it worse) entirely.
I did discover that my symptoms can be exercise-induced. Whenever I push myself hard, either with weights, martial arts, or running, my stomach gets worse.
It used to happen years ago when I was a competitive karate athlete. Whenever my stomach got better I would start pushing myself harder with my training. Then my stomach would get worse again.
So the lesson there is that I can’t always physically push myself the way I would like.
I need to avoid running and jumping, for the most part. I need to take it easy with my martial arts training so I haven’t been able to attend classes where I might start feeling competitive and go too hard.
I tried a kung fu class at the school my son was attending last year and ended up having an acid reflux flare-up that lasted two weeks!
So I have to pace myself, which I admit isn’t always easy.
I skipped competing in fitness model shows last year because I was struggling with GERD symptoms. Given that my symptoms get worse the more I push myself, it seems like a more moderate approach is warranted. And my competitive nature means that I don’t want to give a half-hearted effort.
So I won’t be competing in 2019, and perhaps not at all.
Where is all that time and energy going to?
A bit of skating, language learning, and piano. And perhaps I’ll finally have time to finish that fitness book I’ve been writing for a few years.
After not travelling at all in 2017 (booo!), we finally got back into it in 2018.
In April, we went to St Lucia for a week to escape the freakishly cold and seemingly-never ending winter.
We then hit the Czech Republic, my birthplace, for a couple of weeks to visit family. We were also able to check out the fairytale village called Cesky Krumlov, that I’ve been wanting to see since an Australian workmate told me about it in 1998.
Plans For 2019
A lot of my focus is on helping my Online Coaching clients change their lives through nutrition and exercise. I do strive to make what I do life-altering. I want to change people’s relationship with food and fitness, rather than just helping them achieve some arbitrary new year’s resolution.
I love what I do and my business will get more of my energy this year.
I’ll also be spending time writing more blog posts and contributing as a fitness & nutrition expert to various outlets.
Writing will be a big focus in 2019.
And having just booked a week-long vacation to the island of Martinique in the French Caribbean in March, it might be time to brush up on my limited high school French!
Best of luck with YOUR plans for 2019.
Hopefully this will be a special year for you.