Sweating the Really Big Stuff – My Health

The following is a post by staff writer Crystal at Budgeting in the Fun Stuff. Her blog covers living expenses, saving for your future, and the fun stuff along the way.

My husband and I dream of early retirement in about 25 years. My husband looks forward to gaming more often. I look forward to having more time to volunteer. We both want to travel more as well. The trick to all of our dreams is to continue saving and to stay in good enough health that we can actually accomplish our goals.

Health is truly something I don’t notice much until I am sick. When I am sick, my world stops and I just suffer. I am a wussy when it comes to pain and usually just try to hide away under my covers when I feed bad. It’s hard to admit that my laziness now may hurt my future happiness.

Keeping that in mind, I am starting to concentrate more on health-related issues now than I ever had worried about it before. Here are a few examples.

Exercise

I exercised a lot as a child and teen simply because I enjoyed sports. I also enjoyed rollerblading to all of my classes and jobs in college, so I stayed in good shape. At the age of 22, fresh out of college, I took a desk job and stopped exercising at all.

Now I’m 27 and am trying to introduce activity back in to my life. I walk my dogs and hike with friends. I need to do more, but I am trying to find an exercise buddy so I don’t lose interest. I started the Crystal Light Challenge, which does keep me honest, but it doesn’t solve my need for human companionship while doing something boring.

Food

I’ve always eaten a bunch. I was not a picky eater as a child and I’m even less picky now. Being open to new foods isn’t a bad thing unless you also tend to overeat if something is really tasty. That’s me. I have a very hard time limiting myself when it comes to really great food.

For the last 5 months, I have been trying to decrease my portion sizes and have stopped eating after 9pm Sunday-Thursday nights. This has helped me sleep better. I’ve also lost 15 pounds. I’ve only cheated a few times, so it is nice to know that I’m not too old to learn new tricks, lol.

Prevention

I completely blew off flu shots and checkups in college. I figured I could always get some medicine if I got sick. Seeing as my family does have a history of weight problems and diabetes, I’ve decided to be more proactive with my health. For the past 5 years, I haven’t missed my annual checkup, blood workup, or flu shot appointments.

I also started caring way more about my weight and have been eating healthier for the past year. My husband and I went from eating out almost every day of the week to just once or twice. We have even started experimenting with new recipes, which is a small victory in my opinion, lol.

Hopefully my realization that I am not indestructible will lead to a more productive future. It would be nice to be able to enjoy the later years of life. :-)

Do you ever think about your health? What do you concentrate on to keep yourself healthy?

14 Responses to Sweating the Really Big Stuff – My Health

  1. Daniel says:

    I absolutely love the Crystal Light challenge. What a PERFECT name!

    I think a big issue with retiring early (or being self-employed) are the medical costs. Sure, there’s less traveling to work and no need to cater your wardrobe to work life, but this having insurance that will cover you and have it not cost a fortune is a major concern for a lot of people.

  2. Briana @ GBR says:

    I’ve been thinking about my health a lot lately. I’m constantly getting sinus infections which is beyond frustrating. I’m on the quest to lose 30 pounds by August. I, too, used to exercise all the time when I was young but once I hit college, it all went downhill and my weight went uphill. I go to the doctor probably more than the average person but the thing is they don’t do anything to help me out besides give me medication and send me on my way. I even ask for a physical and they refuse!

  3. Melyssa says:

    There are many reasons why I decided to get healthy.
    -Working out was my first passion. I’ve strayed and now returned.
    -Being healthy is cheaper when it comes to medical bills.
    -You learn about nutrition and therefore don’t waste money on junk food or over eating.
    -I get to spend more time with family and friends because I have the energy.
    -We only live once so I want to savor every moment.
    -I plan to get life insurance soon and I am hoping I’ll be paying lower premiums.

    There are so many awesome reasons to get healthy and I’m glad that I realized that.

  4. Valerie says:

    Great thoughts!

    On exercise – I agree, boredom is the big enemy. I have tried to branch out in my activities. New ones include spinning classes (a good instructor with good music can make it actually pretty fun), racquetball, hiking, and gymnastics. The name of the game for me is to be have a focus other than “keep moving my legs”. When I can focus on a sport or a skill, much better than focusing on the time left clicking down on the elliptical.

    On the flip side, when I am exercising regularly I find it helps the other health areas. I feel like eating healthier, I sleep better, etc.

  5. krantcents says:

    Up to the age of 31, I never really thought about fitness! That year I gained 15 pounds over the holidays. After the holidays, I seriously worked on it and succeeded in losing 35 pounds and kept it off! That was 33 years ago! Ever since, I watch what I eat and exercise at least 2-3 times a week. I have a home gym and bicycle 20 miles twice a week. I feel and look great! The exercise relieves stress and keeps you healthy. Physical and mental health is tied together and helps me with my financial success.

    I invite you to check out my personal financial blog (www.krantcents.cm).

  6. I’m 27 too and usually my metabolism is so fast, but things are slowing down! I’ve been trying to schedule in yoga to be more active, and taking the stairs when possible.

    15 lb weight loss is great!! Another thing that works is decreasing your carb (refined) portion to lose weight.

    • Daniel says:

      @youngandthrifty, For me, taking the stairs is a small thing you do that probably doesn’t have that much of an effect. If anything, you think about it every time you have the choice, and maybe that stresses you out or makes you think you’re not doing enough.

      Don’t get me wrong, I also take the stairs sometimes and there’s no way it negatively affects your health. But there are bigger things to do.

      I say, instead of worrying about that, why not take 20 minutes once or twice a week to exercise. There’s no doubt that running every couple of days will make a bigger difference than a few flights of stairs each day.

    • @youngandthrifty, but if stairs are what you can and will do, don’t give them up unless you get into a different successful routine! It’s better than nothing while you try to get a real exercise schedule going. :-)

      I don’t take stairs unless I have to and don’t have a regular routine right now…bad combo, lol.

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