Passion Project | Wellness Journey

At the beginning of last week I decided to open up a private Instagram account I had started sometime last year to document health and fitness related stuff: https://www.instagram.com/ae_fit/. I had used it for awhile after my blood clotting issues and then it stalled - well, I stalled - my focus being pulled in different directions as usual. 

But I'm ready to do something not "as usual" for me. 

You might remember how in the post about our first Story Camp event Katie remarked that it was a game-changer of a weekend. Even though this is not directly related I feel like that was truly a springboard for opening up a new chapter for me. I honestly have no idea how the actual story will unfold but a spark was ignited and this focus on health + wellness feels directly in alignment to living my best story.

This adventure into wellness is so much about owning my own story. About taking care of myself. About getting to know myself better along the way. 

My hope in making this Instagram account public is to make myself a little more accountable and give myself the opportunity to share this journey alongside any of you out there who might want to work on this in your own life right along with me. 

I'm calling this a wellness journey because I want it to be more than just fitness and food - I also want to include the spirit (mind & heart) portion as well. 

I'm including a bunch of instastories (click on the circle icon with my picture on my profile to view any stories that might be available - this is via the mobile app) on that account where I'm sharing more of my overall story. I'm trying to include a morning story as I start my walk or other morning exercise each morning, and then including other topics like barriers, doing the things we don't want to do to be able to do the things we want to do (inspired by Courtney Carver's @bemorewithless upcoming book Soulful Simplicity), meals, etc.  

THINGS THAT ARE WORKING FOR ME RIGHT NOW

1. Getting up early and walking or following the Couch To 5K program

I've had good intentions to start this habit for awhile. I've been setting my alarm and waking up but not actually getting up - translation - I've been picking up my phone and scrolling and then either resetting my alarm for a different time or going back to sleep. I seem to have turned a corner this week on this front and have been getting up and out by 6am. I'm a morning person so this isn't the biggest hurdle I face and I know that I feel good when I begin my day with some activity. What I'm doing right now is the Couch To 5K program alternating with walking. I have a 3 mile loop that is my regular path. I listen to podcasts while I'm walking or walk/running via the Couch To 5K app. 

I think getting up early all last week and moving my body first thing was such an awesome way to start the day - it's definitely something I want to continue long term. 

2. Varying my activity but making sure I'm doing at least one active thing each day. Making one healthy choice and then making another and another. It's amazing when I think about how sedentary I've been recently. I'm combining walking, swimming, yoga, Barre3, and biking right now. 

3. Being open to trying new stuff. I signed up and tried a Barre3 class last week and loved it. I was totally nervous to go but super motivated to make it happen. I love that it's harder than I work by myself and I love that it's with other people in a class environment (they also have an online option as well). I've been two more times since that first visit (including a 6AM class) and I can tell it's something that is going to make a difference for me. 

4. Gluten + dairy free and an overall emphasis on whole foods. Following food and menu suggestions from Real Food Whole Life, Danielle Walker (Against All Grain) and The Body Book (definitely interested in the topic of balancing hunger hormones with Kelly Leveque).

5. Listening to the Feel Good Effect Podcast. So good. From Robin at Real Food Whole Life. It was on that podcast that I learned about the concept of balancing hunger hormones (episode 003). Do you have other health and wellness podcasts that you enjoy? I'd love to add some more to my list. 

6. Taking it one day at a time, one choice at a time. I want this to become my lifestyle not something I burn out from. I can do this. 

If you'd like to follow along with my journey and participate in the larger community who are working to make wellness/health a priority you can join me on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ae_fit/

Let's do this together. 

PS | I'm also planning to post updates here from time to time about things I'm learning, things that are working + not working, etc. 

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26 thoughts

  1. mtercha says…
    07/05/2017

    That's awesome, Ali. Love your enthusiasm. Best wishes. Michelle t

    Reply 0 Replies
  2. PoochPatrol says…
    07/05/2017

    Ali, this is yet another way that you inspire me. I too am going down the same path of finally taking care of myself in the best possible way. It's a matter of a lot of baby steps, breaking of old habits, making and keeping of new. I think spring did it to me this year. Everything around was being renewed and I thought I deserved it to! I look forward to your postings to hear how your journey is going each day. Every little bit is a step in the right direction. :)

    Reply 0 Replies
  3. soonermama says…
    07/05/2017

    I've been really enjoying your instastories and think it is helping me refind my track as well. For me, food is a much bigger hurdle than exercise as deciding to exercise is one choice a day and food is a lot of choices a day. I do think having your updates/nudge is helpful and am thinking of starting my own version so I have a little accountability idea out there. I will say, a humorous side effect is that after all of these years of listening to you talk about scrapbooking, I do often feel like scrapbooking immediately after watching even though that isn't what you're talking about in the video. I'm apparently very conditioned to you voice as a crafting prompt!

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      07/05/2017

      Ha! I love that!

  4. dweiss says…
    07/05/2017

    Ali, you are an inspiration to me. I just read your blog post and then had to go down the hall at work to deliver something. We have a popcorn machine in our building and someone had made popcorn...it smelled so good...but I walked away. I'm doing Whole 30 this month and popcorn is not on the approved list!

    Reply 0 Replies
  5. smultringunn says…
    07/05/2017

    Your instastories have been very inspiring to me! I've been on a health kick this year with the nutritional study I'm in and training for a race, but once that race was over I started letting things slide a bit. Back in the game now. :)

    Reply 0 Replies
  6. ksmou says…
    07/05/2017

    I love listening to the Dishing Up Nutrition podcast put out by the Nutritional Weight & Wellness Clinics in MN - Cathy Z recommended it several years ago and I find it very interesting. It is run by licensed nutritionists and covers every topic you can think of. Thanks for sharing your journey - it's helping me focus on mine!

    Reply 0 Replies
  7. lrentsch says…
    07/05/2017

    Can try the "Healthy Moms Podcast" = I tend to pick and choose episodes I am interested in. I know they have done several on Hashimotos....

    Reply 0 Replies
  8. 2dognight says…
    07/05/2017

    Hi Ali, loving the daily morning instastories...very motivating and as always you have such great resources---recipes, podcasts, books! thanks so much for sharing---here's to the power of a tribe!

    Reply 0 Replies
  9. gina200 says…
    07/05/2017

    I have really been enjoying your Insta-stories and your updates. Congrats to you on taking time for yourself. I've listened to one episode of Fitfluential and it was pretty good. I'm going to check out others.
    I'm so impressed that you've gotten up each day to walk or exercise. I too am a morning person and really enjoy starting my day with exercise. On weekends however, my husband likes to sleep in and I feel bad getting up to exercise - almost as if I'm deserting him. Weird, I know but I'm trying to get past it.

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      07/05/2017

      I understand that :). Around here when the kids aren't here Aaron stays up super late doing music - like 3am - and I've been getting up at 5am ;). This way we are both getting in what we want in our day.

  10. smultringunn says…
    07/05/2017

    Oh, I forgot my podcast rec: Rich Roll! He goes beyond just health and fitness and interviews very interesting people about all sorts of issues and generally inspires me to be a more conscious person.

    Reply 0 Replies
  11. tretiakovam says…
    07/05/2017

    I know it's not exactly health related but more wellness - On Being, Hidden Brain and Sporkful are total favorites!! And Radio Lab because it's straight up interesting!

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      07/06/2017

      OnBeing is a total favorite.

  12. Roelina says…
    07/05/2017

    Shawn Stevenson Model is a great podcast to listen to. That's what I listen to to help stay on track. I've loved following you're journey and it helps me stay motivated to stay on track for my own wellness journey even if it means running through swarms of mosquitoes 😧

    Reply 0 Replies
  13. tshaw says…
    07/06/2017

    That podcast was amazing!!! Thanks for sharing. So many good takeaways.

    Reply 0 Replies
  14. Afink26 says…
    07/06/2017

    Hi Ali! I thought of you specifically when I read this post on another blog I love, Modern Mrs. Darcy. http://modernmrsdarcy.com/stay-on-board/

    It's about a book she read inviting one to bring their boldest self to the challenges they face, and it resonated with me and sounded like something you may enjoy, too. BTW--the salads you have on that Instagram post look DELICIOUS!

    Cheers,
    Amy

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      07/07/2017

      I will totally check that out - thank you!

  15. Jgk04 says…
    07/06/2017

    Hi Ali, thanks so much for sharing this part of your life with all of us. You've totally inspired me to work on overcoming my fear of trying classes that have been calling my name for years, like yoga and Pilates. I've gotten a real handle on my nutrition and so moving more is definitely the next natural evolution in my journey. I can do this! I have a podcast you might like called Balanced Bites with Diane Sanfilippo (Practical Paleo) and Liz Wolfe (Eat the Yolks). It's on my rotation and I really enjoy it. Thanks again Ali! Keep on keepin on!

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      07/07/2017

      Thanks for those recommendations! I'll check them out!

  16. ritaymca says…
    07/07/2017

    You can go down a rabbit hole with health & wellness podcasts... because of my automimmunity (Hashimoto's) I've really liked Ellen Laird's Phoenix Helix, and The Paleo View (Sarah Ballantyne-the guru behind Paleo Principles).

    Reply 0 Replies
  17. TraceyDavies says…
    07/08/2017

    Thanks Ali, you inspire me to continue to be committed to my health care goals which I really apprecaite and love that you are willing to be vulnerable and share your very personal journey's with us. I have been so blessed to be a part of this community and it has helped me to get back into a rhythm of memory keeping and inspires me to share and tell the stories of my life in wonderfully creative ways. Thank you for all that you do and bring to my life through your products, classes and connection with this community of like minded souls. Many blessings to you and your family - Tracey

    Reply 0 Replies
  18. smbleekes says…
    07/08/2017

    Dr. Rhonda Patrick has a great podcast called Found My Fitness. She also goes on Joe Rogan's podcast a few times a year, if you like listening to him.

    If you search iTunes for podcasts with Gary Taubes, or Dominic D'agostino as guests, I guarantee they'll blow you away with their knowledge and complete paradigm shift.

    Also, Robb Wolf's podcast is always interesting. Lately I've been listening to Ben Greenfield as well, he's really good too and has a wide variety of guests.

    Reply 0 Replies
  19. lily5775 says…
    07/13/2017

    GO ALI GO!!!!!

    Reply 0 Replies
  20. Laurie_Anne says…
    07/15/2017

    Hi Ali,

    Just love the wellness program. Any chance this could be a new scrapping project in the manner of OLW?

    I love embellishments as wellness markers; quotes are helpful; prompts are helpful; etc. It could start in January or anytime I guess. What you are doing is fine and good, but it could be more. I would buy it!! Just a thought. Love your lessons and your projects!
    Thx! Laurie

    Reply 0 Replies
  21. TORRSMOM says…
    07/16/2017

    Thanks for sharing your journey! You might like to check out the blog Oh She Glows for great dairy-free/GF recipes. Love her! Also truly enjoy The Good Life Project podcast!

    Reply 0 Replies

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