While I was on vacation, I read French Women Don't Get Fat. You read that right. I read a diet book. On vacation. On purpose. I find diet books to interesting and (often times) amusing, so yes, I occasionally read them for fun. (Actually, I read a lot of things while I was on vacation. Reading is fun.) And, I found that the book is actually full of some pretty good advice. The thrust of the book seemed to be, "slow down, be choosy, make time for yourself, and enjoy what you have." And, I think my life could use a little more of that. I think most people could probably use a little more of that.
I've been thinking about my life and about how stressful being a graduate student can be. I have school work, research, lab hours, and teaching responsibilities that I have to balance with the business of being a grown up, which luckily for me just means making sure that my cats and I eat, sleep and exercise and that the bills are paid on time. And, when push comes to shove the parts of my life that get dumped first when I'm busy are my eating, my sleeping and my exercising. But, I have thought about this a lot, over the last eight months or so and I have come to the conclusion that taking time away from the eating, sleeping and exercising doesn't help me get any of the other stuff any easier. In fact, it makes everything just a little bit worse, likely because I'm not getting the vitamins/nutrients/calories I need and I don't have a place to appropriately blow off steam.
So, before I even picked up the book, I was already on the look out for little changes that I could make that would just get more movement into my life. I have decided that starting on Monday, I am challenging myself to 30 days of 20 minutes of yoga in the morning and to 30 days of a stroll after dinner. I'm a little nervous that I won't be able to keep it up but I think these are necessary changes that need to be made so I'm going to make it happen.