Behind The Butter

Simmer Down

All day long I’ve been meaning to go for a run. It hasn’t happened yet. And quite honestly, I don’t think it will.

It feels good to rest.

We live in such a high strung society where where its drilled into our brain that we have to keep busy every second of every day. Your worth is measured in how many days a week you exercise and how hard you push yourself.

Am I the only one who doesn’t think it makes sense that despite all our vigorous activities we are still a nation leading in obesity, diabetes, heart disease and cancer?

Perhaps we should slow down. It feels so goooooooooooood.

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121 Comments

  • Reply
    Kate
    April 23, 2010 at 3:23 pm

    Eat Live Run A Food journal of a Girl with A Healthy Mission
    I just started reading your blog lately and I have read about cupcakes, wine, chocolate, sugar cookies……………….and more non so healthy treats. I like your blog but maybe you should change your title.

  • Reply
    Sharon
    April 23, 2010 at 3:24 pm

    While I think for people who maintain as tough an exercise regimen as you do, there is definitely something to be said for rest days…unfortunately those in our society suffering from the ailments you speak of are often not pushing themselves enough physically. But yeah, I feel you on the rest day. I’m supposed to be going to Pilates today, but am really thinking of ditching it. I ran yesterday and my legs ache….when does that ever stop?

  • Reply
    Cyclist Kate
    April 23, 2010 at 3:27 pm

    Yes! I agree. I love to move my body. I also love learning to honor my body and my brain when it says a day puttering around the house would nourish my soul more than going for a bike ride. There’s something so lovely about being healthy and fit and feeling good and having the mental balance to incorporate slow days into our routines.

  • Reply
    Chelsea (Chelsea's Chew and Run Fun)
    April 23, 2010 at 3:27 pm

    There’s a sound by Radiohead called, “Fitter, Happier” that perfectly summarizes the sentiment in this post. I agree whole-heartedly, the pressure to be productive seems to be an omnipresent theme in our society, yet in a weird twist we tend to burn out, rely on fad diets, plastic surgery for quick fixes, and crappy diet food to cut calories…what we really need is to hone in our individual intuition and be real. I think your blog is a fine example of that. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Erin
    April 23, 2010 at 3:28 pm

    agreed. ๐Ÿ™‚ So good to stop. Smell the fresh air…listen to the wind..the birds..look at the colors…feel quiet. To rest. So important to our happiness and health. Love your blog…read it mult. times a day. ๐Ÿ™‚ Helps me when i feel lonely…as I am also far away from home.

  • Reply
    Maggie
    April 23, 2010 at 3:29 pm

    You must be reading my mind or something, because your words are just what my soul’s sayin’

  • Reply
    OrganicAshley
    April 23, 2010 at 3:32 pm

    I cannot agree more. I stopped running to focus on yoga and slowing down. Everyone kept asking when I was going to start again and what race i was doing next. We are the only country that wakes up at 5AM to run 5 miles as the sun rises and then don’t eat carbs for the rest of the day and wonders why we are all so sick and unhappy. I ended up with all this doubt and it made me so self conscious. I’m just not sure that pushing our bodies so hard is healthy.

  • Reply
    Crunchy Granola Gal
    April 23, 2010 at 3:37 pm

    hmm, i may have to disagree. it depends which crowds your run (or don’t run :P) with – not everyone is health and exercise-obsessed, and not every media outlet urges this kind of lifestyle. depends who you hang with, who and what you listen to, and what you read, amongst other things. chose wisely.

  • Reply
    Sana
    April 23, 2010 at 3:40 pm

    bahaha @ Kate- everyone eats/drinks cupcakes, wine, chocolate, and sugar cookies! You would be UNHEALTHY if you did not. Get with it ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Jil
    April 23, 2010 at 3:41 pm

    I agree – we all need to ‘stop and smell the roses’ a little more often. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Bec
    April 23, 2010 at 3:42 pm

    Great reminder that we need to slow down, this morning I forced myself out of bed to go to yoga even though I didn`t get enough sleep and I didn`t get as much out of class as I could have and I have been so tired all day. I definitely should have had a SLOW morning and stayed in bed:)

  • Reply
    MollyM
    April 23, 2010 at 3:44 pm

    I think the title ‘eat, live, run’ perfectly describes what this blog and you, are all about- balance. You obviously balance an active exercise life with a love for good food! And what is life without those little moments of quiet? I love your outlook on life- never change!

  • Reply
    Caitlin
    April 23, 2010 at 3:45 pm

    Hahah I think the reason we lead in preventable diseases deaths is not enough people exercise! But yes, YOU should take a break ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Reply
    Mindy
    April 23, 2010 at 3:48 pm

    I know what you mean about the need to go!go!go! I have to remind myself that it’s OKAY if I don’t workout today.. life will go on LOL. And.. have you seen Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution? That’s why we’re the leading nation in obesity..

  • Reply
    Lisa
    April 23, 2010 at 3:48 pm

    What is “resting”??? I so don’t remember. I go-go-go and train-train-train. Funny how my dreams and fantasies are usually involving me on a sunny beach with an umbrella drink. Is that a message from my subconscious or what? ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Mary @ What's Cookin' with Mary
    April 23, 2010 at 3:50 pm

    I like the way you think ! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Reply
    Lauren @ A Fit Foodie
    April 23, 2010 at 3:51 pm

    I agree whole heartedly! Preach it!

  • Reply
    Allie (Live Laugh Eat)
    April 23, 2010 at 3:51 pm

    Usually, if I am not gung ho about going out for a run (i.e. I keep crawling in my bed and/or munching on cookies to delay leaving the house) then I figure I might as well chillax and give my body some lovin’. I’ll save my run for the days I jump out of bed ready to go go go.

  • Reply
    Lauren
    April 23, 2010 at 3:54 pm

    Jenna- you are a breath of fresh air! I love your blog SOOO much…I’ve been reading it for over a year now and comment rarely, but I just wanted to let you know. I’m in university and in the middle of exams right now. I have been reading old posts of yours on and off today as my study breaks, and I just love your attitude and way of thinking. It’s cool to see how much you’ve grown- you are less rigid now and just generally happier (that’s what it looks like from your writing anyways!). I really love reading your blog everyday! ๐Ÿ™‚ You have no idea how much you have helped me…Hope you are feeling better today! <3

  • Reply
    eatmovelove
    April 23, 2010 at 3:58 pm

    Yeah, that first comment is stupid – sorry, I hate that word, but it is….anyways – amen – slowing down would solve the WORLD’S problems girls!!! Stop and smell the roses…or whatever’s cooking…and then scarf it down like i do ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Reply
    Katy ( The Balanced Foodie)
    April 23, 2010 at 4:05 pm

    I appreciate this a lot. It was hard to get back into working out and while I love being active, it was nice to listen to my body and rest for more then a couple days. Sometimes you need a break! Especially during hard times, your body needs REST!!!! You’re doing a great job taking care of yourself, and that’s most important.

  • Reply
    Meg
    April 23, 2010 at 4:15 pm

    I agreeeee 100% ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Reply
    liane
    April 23, 2010 at 4:20 pm

    I’m totally one of those people who has every moment of the day filled, I constantly have to remind myself to stop scheduling so much and enjoy my surroundings.
    Have a fabulous evening ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    MMiller
    April 23, 2010 at 4:26 pm

    I agree Jenna! (Although I do give myself a few too many “rest” days!) When I first quit my job a few years ago, and started to do “nothing” and take care of myself and rest, I felt better that I had in years! I even started going to the gym regularly…For me! Just for about an hour, but I tried to go most days! Just to get moving a little! After battling Cancer and a recurrence that brought a stroke and kidney failure with it…I was still trying to work…and it was killing me! I have a lot less stress in general, but do get stressed over money often! Work needed me to work more hours and I was struggling to work the 15 hours that I was doing! By the time I showered and got ready for work, I was exhausted…and I hadn’t even gotten to work yet! I decided that whether I lived or died, this isn’t how I wanted to live…whether it was for 12 months or 12 years! I had just lost my sister and grandmother and just wasn’t going to push myself anymore! And my doctors are all thrilled, they can’t believe I am still alive!

  • Reply
    Angi
    April 23, 2010 at 4:34 pm

    In the past year I have been working sporadically – I have been forced to take time to slow down. I have really struggled with that idea.

    But I am hitting my groove where I am figuring myself out and taking steps towards doing more what I really want…I am starting to get more fit because I no longer care about being perfect and in control all the time.

  • Reply
    Breanne
    April 23, 2010 at 4:37 pm

    I’m with you Jenna
    Let’s slow down and see the beauty in life
    Taken in all that God created for us
    If you don’t want to run one day … then don’t
    I’m all for it

  • Reply
    Amanda
    April 23, 2010 at 4:43 pm

    It does feel good to slow down : ) I find it really ironic that our nation seems to be obsessed with being thin yet we have record numbers of obese people. *sigh

  • Reply
    Charles
    April 23, 2010 at 4:45 pm

    It’s an interesting observation.

    On the one hand, healthy living has almost become a luxury, in that the least healthy options are the also the least expensive. They’re also the most convenient. See fast food “value” menus, for example. But that’s a whole other discussion for another time.

    On the other hand, I think it’s the mental attitude that you mentioned, to push and push and push, for the ever elusive “more”. More of whatever it is you’re pushing yourself towards. Being able to reflect and say, “I truly enjoy what I have, so I have enough.” I think your current choice of apartment decor, available space notwithstanding, speaks volumes in this regard.

    Balance.

  • Reply
    Jessica @ How Sweet It Is
    April 23, 2010 at 4:47 pm

    I adore rest days. I am a full believer in taking them when you need them!

  • Reply
    Erin (Travel, Eat, Repeat)
    April 23, 2010 at 4:48 pm

    I think people get obsessed with the idea of “dieting” and fall for whatever is the latest trend, which, of course, fails. It’s about permanent change and that includes indulging in wine, pasta and baked goods.

  • Reply
    T
    April 23, 2010 at 4:51 pm

    I so needed to be reminded of this today!
    Thank you,
    a going crazy mother and wife

  • Reply
    Suzanne de Cornelia
    April 23, 2010 at 5:05 pm

    I have much more French ideas–ours is not the only culture in the world. I do what’s right for me, appreciate what’s good, and ignore what doesn’t make sense. In the end–you are creating the spirit that live’s in eternity…and eternity doesn’t care if you ran a 9 minute mile!

    To me, to know what most need to live your right life–consider [and re-evaluate this each year] what is the one moment you’d live with in eternity if could only chose one from your entire life. You will not be able to recreate this memory, but it will tell you what is most meaningful for you. Mine was very simple–and I realized all the money in the world couldn’t replace it. Then I also knew what I needed to be happy, balanced and free. Am trying to put as much of the quality of my ‘eternal moment’ as possible into my life.

  • Reply
    Suzanne de Cornelia
    April 23, 2010 at 5:05 pm

    I have much more French ideas–ours is not the only culture in the world. I do what’s right for me, appreciate what’s good, and ignore what doesn’t make sense. In the end–you are creating the spirit that live’s in eternity…and eternity doesn’t care if you ran a 9 minute mile!

    To me, to know what most need to live your right life–consider [and re-evaluate this each year] what is the one moment you’d live with in eternity if could only chose one from your entire life. You will not be able to recreate this memory, but it will tell you what is most meaningful for you. Mine was very simple–and I realized all the money in the world couldn’t replace it. Then I also knew what I needed to be happy, balanced and free. Am trying to put as much of the quality of my ‘eternal moment’ as possible into my life.

  • Reply
    Erin
    April 23, 2010 at 5:06 pm

    I loev the simplicity and bluntness of this post. You need more of these affirmation-like posts Jenna. Thanks for reminding me to put on the brakes:)

  • Reply
    Maggie @ Fit.Fun.Food
    April 23, 2010 at 5:09 pm

    Great post! You made a great point about how crazy-busy Americans are. I know I could definitely benefit from slowing down once in a while.

  • Reply
    briana
    April 23, 2010 at 5:12 pm

    Hi Jenna I don’t comment much but I love reading your blog and this post is exactly how I feel all the time! You hit the nail on the head we need to just stop and relax sometimes its HEALTHY!

  • Reply
    Suzanne de Cornelia
    April 23, 2010 at 5:15 pm

    The ‘chocolate, wine, cookies’ remark also reminded me what love about the French–and EatLiveRun. Health oriented and fit and also fully enjoy very good food, wine, chocolate, etc just everything in moderation.

  • Reply
    Staceyhttp://stacey-healthylife.blogspot.com/
    April 23, 2010 at 5:19 pm

    That’s right you rest and relax, you have had a tough week and you have all weekend to workout.

  • Reply
    Mom
    April 23, 2010 at 5:26 pm

    Thank you Suzanne!

  • Reply
    Motivations for Healthy Living
    April 23, 2010 at 5:31 pm

    I absolutely agree that we MUST slow down!! Life is too short! why make it even shorter by rushing through everything?! For examples, on Saturday mornings I love to just kick back after breakfast and have some coffee while reading my favorite magazine. Whatever you love to do, is good to make time for it.

  • Reply
    Cynthia (It All Changes)
    April 23, 2010 at 5:33 pm

    I’ve tried to take this approach a bit more lately. Not enjoying myself and always worried about exercise was stressing me out. I’m enjoying life a bit more lately.

  • Reply
    Nicole
    April 23, 2010 at 5:38 pm

    I just want to say that I’ve been following your blog for over a year now and you truly are a role model to me. I have struggled with anorexia for 4 years and do have my high and very low points. From reading your blog, I realized that it’s ok to indulge at times and what well balanced meals look like. I hope to one day become an RD as well as meet you. I know that you probably get tons of e-mails and comments and don’t respond to all of them but I honestly hope to hear from you. Also, how do u get companies to send you healthy food samples? I need some connections girlie! Your the best, God Bless, Nicole

  • Reply
    Gwen
    April 23, 2010 at 5:43 pm

    I needed to hear this tonight. I too often measure my week in how hard I worked out, how far I ran, how well I ate. Tonight, I went to TJ and bought some brie (okay it was light), blackberries and a bottle of Moscato. I didn’t tear in to them tonight, but the simple act of buying them made me feel so good. I skipped my long run and came home to relax. I needed it. Thank you!

  • Reply
    Kristin (Cook, Bake and Nibble)
    April 23, 2010 at 5:45 pm

    I reeeeallly need to slow down. Thanks so much for this!!

    xo
    K

  • Reply
    Sarah for Real
    April 23, 2010 at 5:47 pm

    I’m with you on that one! I took a two hour nap today… Love the hippy-vibe bus ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Reply
    Kath
    April 23, 2010 at 5:47 pm

    I stopped to smell the Sonoma wines tonight and missed you ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Katie
    April 23, 2010 at 5:47 pm

    Ah needed to hear this. I’ve been thesis-ing at least 12 hours a day, training for a marathon, and applying to jobs. I look forward to driving because it means no work! How sad! It’s good to be reminded ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Jin
    April 23, 2010 at 5:50 pm

    Jenna, thank you, thank you, thank you for writing this.
    So often, I feel imperfect compared to the many bloggers who seem to strive for perfection each and everyday.
    You continue to inspire me.

  • Reply
    Rachel
    April 23, 2010 at 5:52 pm

    Nah, seriously, your blog is so so REAL. I love healthy living, exercise, nutrition, the whole bit…in fact, at a time, too much. Some real life perspective of somebody who is the same, but is able to accept to just slow down is refreshing, and to be honest, encouraging.

  • Reply
    Greta
    April 23, 2010 at 6:04 pm

    Amen! I’m pretty sure that stress and sloth are about equal demons. Have a great weekend Jenna!

  • Reply
    Deva (Voracious Vorilee)
    April 23, 2010 at 6:06 pm

    I think that slowing down is good. I took a rest day today because it’s what my body needed. I can’t go go go everyday with workouts – three days in a row, one day off tends to work best for me, and I like it that way!

  • Reply
    Meghan@traveleatlove
    April 23, 2010 at 6:17 pm

    I married a European, enough said ๐Ÿ™‚ I learned to be a lot less insane and to live a little more than I was before!

  • Reply
    M(a different M than the other M!!)
    April 23, 2010 at 6:24 pm

    Thanks for all the heartfelt posts Jenna.
    In appreciation of your blog!Merci!!

  • Reply
    lola
    April 23, 2010 at 6:40 pm

    I agree with you Jenna, but sometimes is so hard for me to take a rest day!!
    Your post about grief is so beautiful, if baking makes you feel better, go for it! If eating those 5 dozens of cookies will make you feel better, do it, also.
    You are such a brave, beautiful soul, my blessings and good vibes go to you ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    postcollegecook
    April 23, 2010 at 6:48 pm

    This is not necessarily related to this post, but I just wanted to say that I’ve really enjoyed your blog lately, Jenna. I’ve been reading for about a year, but rarely comment, and it just seems like lately you’ve really found your voice. I love your honesty, and you crack me up more often than not. Looking forward to reading your book!

  • Reply
    Samantha J
    April 23, 2010 at 6:52 pm

    Amen to that. I’ve been living by that a lot lately. The last month I’ve traded my usual cardio heavy workouts and crazy schedule in for leisurely walks or simply just sitting outside and taking it all in. And ya know what? I’ve never felt more relaxed and content with my life.

  • Reply
    dannielle
    April 23, 2010 at 6:53 pm

    i dont think that society measures people’s worth by how much they exercise. the problem is that people keep SAYING that. who actually suggests that you exercise all the time? who are these fictional people measuring worth by fitness? i think healthy living blogs should start talking about taking responsibility and not saying that things are “drilled into our brain”. i just dont quite understand how this is true!

  • Reply
    Mastering Public Health
    April 23, 2010 at 6:58 pm

    I definitely like your concept but as a public health grad student, I must agree with Sharon — those who are sadly suffering from those health conditions that result from physical inactivity unfortunately need to do just the opposite. ๐Ÿ™ It’s fine to take rest/relaxation days if one leads a generally balanced lifestyle (healthy diet/non-sedentary) — like you — but those top diseases that face our nation generally result from a need to “speed up”! But, again, I feel the serenity vibe that you’re coming from.

  • Reply
    ida
    April 23, 2010 at 7:04 pm

    nothing beats a good rest day! so important for the mind and body. your blog is wonderful, and so are you.

  • Reply
    jenna
    April 23, 2010 at 7:09 pm

    love rest days! you dererve it ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    jenna
    April 23, 2010 at 7:09 pm

    love rest days! you dererve it ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    steph-exercise physiologist and artist!
    April 23, 2010 at 7:23 pm

    You know what is so funny. I didnt get healthy (that means lose 60lbs of excess weight!) until I learned to SLOW DOWN.
    Before that I was so OBSESSED with calories/exercise/carbs/fat/eating/not eating…… bad body image.
    My mind would race and race and race around these subjects from the time I opened my eyes in the morning until I went to bed a night.
    Once I was able to slow it down step back and figure out what was really important to me, the weight began to come off and food was no longer bigger than me.
    Slowing down is underrated and almost frowned upon. silly really

  • Reply
    Christie
    April 23, 2010 at 7:28 pm

    Do you mean our society in general? That I do agree with. I for some reason thought Northern Cali was different… no? Thoughts to share on that? Maybe it’s just the wine country vaca’s I hear about from friends!

    ~Christie

  • Reply
    diana@mymarblerye
    April 23, 2010 at 7:44 pm

    I always simmer down..but pronounce it “simma” down…anyways, I agree with you. Americans spend more money and time trying to “lose weight” than any other country but we are the heaviest!! I blame all those sugarfree, lowfat products out there….ESPECIALLY the dreaded high fructose corn syrup…AND..stress….OH the stress of our daily lives.

  • Reply
    Midgetkeeper
    April 23, 2010 at 9:09 pm

    Slowing down is so good for the soul.

    Sadly just because everyone is always busy doesn’t mean it’s active, so that plays into the obesity part big time.

  • Reply
    Annie@stronghealthyfit
    April 23, 2010 at 9:35 pm

    I took a rest day today too, and it felt good for my body AND my mind. i had time to practice the piano, spend time with my husband, and also just lie down and close my eyes for ten minutes. There are a lot more things to being healthy than just working out! Thanks for the message Jenna ๐Ÿ™‚
    What’s with that first comment? Hi-frickin-larious.

  • Reply
    Kait
    April 24, 2010 at 12:36 am

    break days can equal great days…i wish I gave myself days off more often. Maybe tomorrow I’ll let it all go and just take a day off

  • Reply
    Jennie {in Wonderland}
    April 24, 2010 at 1:01 am

    Ever since I read ‘The China Study’, I no longer wonder why the Western world leads in ‘diseases of affluence’ like cancer, diabetes and heart disease. But that’s another story! I really recommend the book though; I think you’d enjoy it!! It’s riveting.
    I love your posts lately. I feel like you’re letting us into your heart. It’s really lovely, Jenna. Thanks for this!

  • Reply
    lena
    April 24, 2010 at 1:41 am

    i totally agree! thanks for echoing my thoughts! they’ve screwed our minds so much so that we worry too much about what we eat and how inactive we are if we don’t exercise! unlike in the 70s and 80s, we never had to worry about these things or eating so much processed food, plus there were less ailments despite eating what is deemed unhealthy for us these days, even though they are natural food! what is wrong with the world? sigh…

  • Reply
    andi
    April 24, 2010 at 4:23 am

    ditto to mastering pub health and sharon–the overwhelming majority of americans have slowed down too much in terms of fitness. i live in a high stress, very competitive area and think that perhaps if we express balance; a balance of vigorous activity to leisurely activity, a balance of workout days to rest days, a balance of indulgent foods to healthier choices, a balance of work to life…i could go on…if we’d get different results. instead, everything is bigger, faster, harder, do more, earn more, go go go go and we’ve gotten into an all or nothing mentality as a country. imho, of course.

    (and love the blog :))

  • Reply
    Sarah (Running to Slow Things Down)
    April 24, 2010 at 4:46 am

    Exercising and staying active is important…equally important is that we (a) enjoy the activity (it should never feel like punishment!) and (b) take much needed rest days!

    Good for you for resting it up! ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Reply
    Sarah
    April 24, 2010 at 4:50 am

    Love, love, love. The need for SLOWING DOWN is why I love yoga. That is where my mind finds rest. Now, granted, my yoga practices aren’t as tough as some of the practices you do!

  • Reply
    Jewels
    April 24, 2010 at 5:09 am

    Slowing down is def important and it’s never good to stress. However I’m not sure most of the country is obsessed with exercise , def depends on who you associate yourself with. While it’s not great to be I’m a constant state of stress I am still a fan of vigorous activity and actually think it would help some of those diseases you mentioned I agree wholeheartedly that you should give yourself some time to relax and you def deserve it. Sorry if the train of thought makes no sense I’m tired
    Have a great weekend Jenna and thanks for the though provoking post!

  • Reply
    theemptynutjar
    April 24, 2010 at 5:18 am

    I have been forced to slow down (physically) for over a year now. If you are able to now, just breathe…sit, eat, breathe. Ride with it. Don’t fight it. Don’t resist it. Forget the coulds, woulds, shoulds.

  • Reply
    Debbie B
    April 24, 2010 at 5:45 am

    My husband is European and he has a completely different outlook on eating and rest without guilt. Over and over I hear him say he will never retire in this country because he wants to retire in peace and enjoy his life. At first I took offense to this being a proud American, but now I honestly do get it. I am the type of person who feels guilt over taking a nap. I keep thinking of what I could or should be doing. My husband thinks it’s rediculous. I’m trying really hard to change that about myself and learn to rest and enjoy life.
    I love your blog and love to read the comments! I can’t wait for your book!

  • Reply
    runnerforever
    April 24, 2010 at 5:55 am

    Agreed, everyone is always rushing around these days. Sometimes we forget to stop and just enjoy life!

  • Reply
    hungryforbalance.wordpress.com
    April 24, 2010 at 6:03 am

    I completely agree! I love that my yoga practice has taught me that (although I need reminding quite often).

  • Reply
    Karen
    April 24, 2010 at 6:40 am

    I took a “rest” day yesterday, but stayed home and cleaned for 5 hours??? Kinda wish I had gone for that bike ride, lol….

  • Reply
    Jess
    April 24, 2010 at 6:46 am

    I totally totally totally agree!

  • Reply
    Lisa
    April 24, 2010 at 6:50 am

    I completely agree! As a homeschooling mom that also has all the other extracurricular activities, social life, etc. going on, I DO make time to just hang out and read, play, explore the outdoors with my kids. I think this is one of the greatest things I am teaching them!! Annoying how people use their busy lives as excuses for everything, we are ALL busy, but have choices in what we do!!

  • Reply
    Sandy
    April 24, 2010 at 6:51 am

    Hi Jenna,
    Love your blog!
    I have been thinking about the same thing lately. I used to feel fabulous (and quite virtuous) about getting to my Pilates class or going for a walk/bike ride. Lately though it feels like only exercising for one hour is the equivalent to doing nothing. Women in my pilates class talk about how they just came from an hour long workout a the gym, or are heading into bar-sculpt class immediately after reformer. I find myself buying into it and berating myself for only exercising once a day. This is of course ridiculous. I’m trying to get over it and realize that the fact that I do get up and move my body once a day is worthy of that fabulous feeling and that taking a rest day is well deserved and keeps me motivated to get back on the reformer or back on the bike.

  • Reply
    Heather (Heather's Dish)
    April 24, 2010 at 7:13 am

    i totally agree. you’ve been to france, so you can probably say for certain whether this is true or not BUT: in french women don’t get fat she talks about how french women walk a LOT and do a ton of yoga and just very light weight training like crunches. and they don’t get fat. i can’t help but wonder what our society would be like if every city or town was easier to walk around, and then maybe people wouldn’t feel totally inclined to join gyms and spend hours there…

  • Reply
    Alison
    April 24, 2010 at 8:01 am

    Love this post, Jenna! I always love your blog but this one really hit home- we do need to slooooooow down!

  • Reply
    Lauren
    April 24, 2010 at 8:35 am

    living a healthy life means doing what is best for you, and if that means baking cupcakes and sugar cookies and taking a break every once in awhile than that’s ok with me! i got thai last night with some of my running friends and we were discussing our workut for this morning and i said happily “i’m taking the weekend off, who’s up for dessert?” ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Kelly @ Healthy Living With Kelly
    April 24, 2010 at 8:43 am

    Good for you for listening to you body!! As for your first comment (by Kate) let me just say to her: that no one is forcing you to read Jenna’s blog…if you don’t like it, don’t read it. But negative commenting and rude remarks really are immature and childish and not something this blogging community needs and or wants.

  • Reply
    kate
    April 24, 2010 at 9:19 am

    Such a good point? Why are we the unhealthiest?

  • Reply
    kate
    April 24, 2010 at 9:20 am

    I meant Such a good point!
    Have a good weekend ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Meg
    April 24, 2010 at 9:49 am

    Well said, Jenna! I love your balanced approach to exercise and eating!

  • Reply
    jillian
    April 24, 2010 at 10:27 am

    Amazing post and SO fitting for me to read today. I love when that happens. Go slow today, and breathe…. you deserve it!

  • Reply
    C
    April 24, 2010 at 12:17 pm

    Thinking of you, Jenna! Hope you’re taking a well deserved rest and getting some jenna-time.

  • Reply
    Adam
    April 24, 2010 at 12:46 pm

    Awesome pic!

  • Reply
    Lauren @ Running Examiner
    April 24, 2010 at 1:10 pm

    Great post, Jenna. I fully agree that it’s essential to honor and respect our bodies AND minds by allowing them the chance to be still. I have been a competitive runner for over a decade, and in the past year have begun to feel a little burnout. While exercising for health and fitness is obviously important, I don’t think you should push yourself do to something at the expense of your happiness and internal wellbeing. For this reason, I began to focus on yoga, running only three days a week (a major cutback for me). I must say, I’m the happiest and healthiest I’ve been in quite awhile. I feel a newfound reverence for my body and all that it can do. You can learn so much by reevaluating your expectations of yourself, and permitting yourself the freedom to just breathe, stretch, and be mindful.

  • Reply
    Julie @ Pickley Pear
    April 24, 2010 at 1:26 pm

    I completely agree. I use weekends for chilaxin’ ๐Ÿ™‚ Rest days are good. I am one of those people who doesn’t feel great unless I work out and sweat. I’ve taken 4 days off working out (gym is closed for renovating) so I took this opportunity to slow down, rest, eat healthy and get back on track next week. It feels amazing.

  • Reply
    Helen
    April 24, 2010 at 1:40 pm

    I agree! We all need to slow down and appreciate life, spend more time with the people we love. I too was going to go for a run today but decided to skip it to spend some much needed time with my bf!

  • Reply
    Jessica @ The Process of Healing
    April 24, 2010 at 2:15 pm

    So SO SO true!!!! Amen sister.

  • Reply
    Anthony
    April 24, 2010 at 2:28 pm

    Great post, Jenna. I fully agree that it’s essential to honor and respect our bodies AND minds by allowing them the chance to be still. I have been a competitive runner for over a decade, and in the past year have begun to feel a little burnout. While exercising for health and fitness is obviously important, I don’t think you should push yourself do to something at the expense of your happiness and internal wellbeing. For this reason, I began to focus on yoga, running only three days a week (a major cutback for me). I must say, I’m the happiest and healthiest I’ve been in quite awhile. I feel a newfound reverence for my body and all that it can do. You can learn so much by reevaluating your expectations of yourself, and permitting yourself the freedom to just breathe, stretch, and be mindful.

  • Reply
    Leslie Hanley
    April 24, 2010 at 2:48 pm

    I made your chili yesterday. It was super yum! So glad you mentioned putting it over noodles when you were a kid. My kids loved it!

  • Reply
    Amanda
    April 24, 2010 at 3:32 pm

    Loooove just slowing down!! Today I chose to take my dog for a relaxed trail walk. No music, no pounding heart … but we had sunshine and fresh air, and it was just so rejuvinating!! Enjoy resting ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Paul
    April 24, 2010 at 3:35 pm

    Loooove just slowing down!! Today I chose to take my dog for a relaxed trail walk. No music, no pounding heart … but we had sunshine and fresh air, and it was just so rejuvinating!! Enjoy resting ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Sarah-Mae @ Eat, Run, Knit
    April 24, 2010 at 3:40 pm

    I couldn’t agree more! It’s sooo hard to let the ego slide and listen to the body sometimes, but it’s usually when you find a way to slow down that you actually feel the best.

  • Reply
    eatmovelove
    April 24, 2010 at 4:43 pm

    There’s a book out now called “Live a Little…” (and something else – I forget the whole title!)…but basically related to this post in that were berating ourselves over everything nowadays…a brownie and french fries aren’t going to kill us…neither is “just a walk” , neither is catching a little bit of sun or having a glass of wine…

  • Reply
    New Friend
    April 24, 2010 at 5:18 pm

    Jenna,

    I have only recently began reading your blog and I am already so addicted to your view on life. Reading about how much you enjoy to exercise and eat foods that are genuinely healthy and wholesome rather than just low-fat, low-carb, low-cal, etc. You truly embrace the healthy living style that so many experts are begging Americans to embrace instead of this yo-yo lifestyle. Healthy means taking breaks, enjoying the best things of life and embracing the challenges we all face willingly. I can’t imagine the difficulty you’re going through right now, especially this week, but my heart reaches out to you with every step you take to stay positive, optimistic and healthy in every way. From what I’ve read about your brother he truly understood that healthiness is very simply happiness.

  • Reply
    Rebecca @ How the Cookie's Crumble
    April 24, 2010 at 5:27 pm

    I meant to go for a long run today too but… I just got my hair did yesterday and wanted to keep it fresh for tonight! ๐Ÿ™‚ Headed out to a wine tasting shortly, much more fun. There’s always tomorrow, and the day after that, and the day after that for exercise!

  • Reply
    sophia
    April 24, 2010 at 7:18 pm

    Your worth is measured in how many days you exercise? By whom besides yourself? I think that’s a very personal comment that could be made for yourself and possibly the people in your own world but I don’t think that it is at all accurate in anything larger than that.

  • Reply
    Adam
    April 24, 2010 at 8:05 pm

    I meant to go for a long run today too but… I just got my hair did yesterday and wanted to keep it fresh for tonight! ๐Ÿ™‚ Headed out to a wine tasting shortly, much more fun. There’s always tomorrow, and the day after that, and the day after that for exercise!

  • Reply
    nora
    April 24, 2010 at 9:28 pm

    Just hoping your slowing down is bringing you peace.

  • Reply
    j
    April 24, 2010 at 11:11 pm

    i find your latest blog posts hypocritical. just because you eat sugar cookies, doesn’t mean the ones who don’t are suddenly considered too uptight. just because you give up on a day’s run, doesn’t mean those who run more regularly “need” to simmer down.

  • Reply
    Steven
    April 24, 2010 at 11:45 pm

    Just hoping your slowing down is bringing you peace.

  • Reply
    Karen
    April 25, 2010 at 12:58 am

    i find your latest blog posts hypocritical. just because you eat sugar cookies, doesn’t mean the ones who don’t are suddenly considered too uptight. just because you give up on a day’s run, doesn’t mean those who run more regularly “need” to simmer down.

  • Reply
    ForDGRedial aka Amy
    April 25, 2010 at 1:45 am

    I just wanted to say lovely post and totally agree. Personally I am at the beginning of my healthy living journey and at first I kind felt overwhelmed, reading about just how healthy people ate and how much exercise they do. I am a perfectionist, tend to suffer from an all or nothing attitude and have a habit of setting myself ridiculously high standards and not giving myself some time to just be. They are things that I am working on. Your blog and a couple of others that I have started following recently are helping me see that it is ok to take small steps, running/walking for 45 minutes 3 times a week doesn’t make me a failure – it makes me someone who is working toward where they want to get to. :o)

    Oh and to people new to the blog, who think Jenna needs to rename her blog or is hypocritical because she has talked about ‘treat’ things recently…a) you don’t own this blog, a blog is a personal account and to me that means it should move with the author b) if you are new then have the manners to read through old posts so that things make sense like I did, then you’d see that this is a tricky time of year for her c) if you don’t like it move onto another blog, as my granny always said ‘if you don’t have anything nice to say, why say anything at all’

    Amy x

  • Reply
    Lizzie
    April 25, 2010 at 3:24 am

    Totally agree Amy! What a shame Kate’s is the first comment on this post.

    As a non American looking in, your country seems to be one of extremes where people are either hugely driven by excercise and health or really not. Like most people here are saying, balance, and if you need to breathe, breathe!

    I wonder if doing a blog also drives you that bit harder to fill your time because people are “watching”! Enjoy your relaxation!
    x

  • Reply
    Jenn (www.j3nn.net)
    April 25, 2010 at 6:33 am

    Yes, rest and relaxation are vital to staying healthy. Your body needs time to reset itself and recovery. ๐Ÿ™‚ Not to mention, constantly taxing your body gives it unneeded stress. Be good to yourself in all ways!

    Jenn

  • Reply
    Kelly (Local Foodie's Fight)
    April 25, 2010 at 7:30 am

    I’m so glad you posted this on my birthday because its like my main mantra in life! you have to stop, slow down, and enjoy life.

  • Reply
    Samantha
    April 25, 2010 at 9:27 am

    I hope you’re doing okay. Haven’t heard from you in awhile!!!! Have a sunny Sunday! ๐Ÿ™‚ How cheesy is that! :p

  • Reply
    Hailey S.
    April 25, 2010 at 9:39 am

    Hey I love your website!! You are 100% real. Do what makes you happy and feel good. Your outlook on life is so refreshing and so fun to read. Keep it up girlie!!!!

  • Reply
    Jaya
    April 25, 2010 at 10:16 am

    Jenna, I will always think of you on April 24th because I know that it represents a significant day in your life. It also happens to be my birthday, but it gives me pause to think about your family and to have gratitude for the presence of my intimate others. I lost my father 10 years ago in April and in the past few years, I have come to find new lessons, light and learning in old memories. We can keep learning from people and interacting in magical and previously unthinkable ways, when the time is right. In the meantime, allow yourself all of the time, space and unpredictable emotion you need. I’m sending warm vibes your way.

  • Reply
    sdfsdfg
    April 25, 2010 at 10:34 am

    your job is to blog, stop whining and post something.

  • Reply
    lucie
    April 25, 2010 at 10:59 am

    i agree. it’s so good to take a break from our hectic lives sometimes.

  • Reply
    sophia
    April 25, 2010 at 1:30 pm

    Okay I left a comment earlier and kept it constructive and positive even though I wasn’t in agreement with what was blogged. The rude comment someone just left about stop whining??? Who are you to leave such a comment? These blog writers put so much of themselves out there to share with us especially Jenna in particular. She offers so many different things to so many different people whether it be learning or just pure entertainment and vicarious living as she’s experiencing such a beautiful part of our country. Why not just NOT read and move on. Your comment was really ugly and inappropriate.

  • Reply
    erica
    April 25, 2010 at 5:22 pm

    Hi, Jenna,

    I hope you’re living your life in the way that you want, not the way others want you to ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s not your job to give other people something to read, it’s your personal diary…at least that’s how I see it! Thinking about you and your family xoxox Your step-cousin, Erica

  • Reply
    kelly
    May 25, 2010 at 1:24 pm

    So glad you are feeling better today! I am SO impressed with your ride! Have a great relaxing few days…

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