Hey there! I honestly didn’t have a blog post put together for you for this week. What a great friend I am right? But I obviously couldn’t leave you hanging. What kind of person would do that?! UGH.

Such a jerk.

Anywho, I typically start writing my posts 4 days before they go live on my blog. I’ll pop in once a day to add/edit to what I already have going on so I can come back to it multiple times with fresh eyes. But here we are, less than 24 hours before this baby goes live and I’m just getting going.

Nothin’ like procrastination, right?

I didn’t have any topics in particular that I wanted to cover this week. To be quite honest with you, my creativity has been on a tropical vacation, waving at me via postcard photo. And you know I am all about creativity.

So, what gives?

I’ve been struggling A LOT with my work-life balance. Hold up. I don’t even know if it’s work-life balance, to be honest with you. I think it’s just work stress. And stress turns off my creative brain. Hence, why my creativity has been sipping margaritas, toes in the sand, flippin’ me the bird.

I’m noticing that my ‘desire for creativity meter’ is a phenomenal way for me to check in with myself. No interest in creativity lately? Somethings off. Time to do some digging…

What I do know for sure, is that work has stressed me out to the point that it has affected my health negatively for a long time now. And it has just kept spiraling downhill. I haven’t had a period in almost a year, my formerly excellent blood pressure (90/60) is suddenly borderline hypertensive (like, are you kidding me?!) and I have had horrible neck and back pain for 9 months.

Some weeks I’d be tricked and feel less stressed at work. I’d think I would start to have it under control. With that came a false sense of hope that I had my shit together. Then the following week it would be back to overwhelming stress and continue to get worse from there.

I blamed it on working out too much, taking on my blog, not enough sleep… Sure, those things certainly could have added to the stress.

But I soon realized it was work related after I took some time off. I felt the cloud cover dissipating DRASTICALLY. Suddenly my horrible neck and back pain is gone. At this point, it’s pretty obvious what the main issue is.

My job.

Currently, I’m on a leave of absence from work to get my health back. Mentally, physically and emotionally. I’m sure I’ll eventually dive into greater detail about this in a future post.

But on my hike this morning I was thinking about how much I enjoy being in nature and how it is such a great way to destress! I’m not the most outdoorsy person, don’t get me wrong.

There’s something about being outdoors and in the woods that is so refreshing. The beautiful views, sweet sounds of nature and fresh air brushing against my skin.

And the mindfulness…

What I love most about hiking as a physical activity though, is that it’s not super intense. Although you can certainly make it super intense… But it still gets you moving and is a great workout overall.

While we were hiking today, I was thinking about how great the activity of hiking is for active rest days. Thinking about active rest days, in general, got my juices flowing a bit to put together a bunch of ideas for active rest days for you!

Some days I just don’t feel like lifting heavy things or going all out in a CrossFit style workout, but I still want to move. Boom. Perfect formula for an active rest day. Physical activity without having to hit it hard. There are so many options. Hiking is definitely my favorite active rest day activity!

If you’re not wanting to head to the gym, but are looking to stay moving, consider taking an active rest day!

Don’t have any ideas for what to do on an active rest day? Don’t worry my friend! I’ve got you covered. I’ve put together a list of active rest day activities for you if you’re looking for some inspiration or just some different ideas!

7 Ideas for an Active Rest Day

1 – HIKE. My go-to active rest day activity. I love being in nature and being able to quiet my mind.

2 – WALK. Taking the dog for a longer stroll than normal or just walking a few miles by yourself!

3 – BIKE. I know, not everyone has a bike and not everyone has perfect weather all year round like us Californians. HAH. You can still get to your gym and just hop on a bike there for a bit.

4 – SWIM. Great for muscle recovery, easy on the old man/lady joints and a great workout.

5 – YOGA. If I could have a second pick for active rest day, yoga would be it! Nothing like moving your body, stretching, and being mindful all at once!

6 – STRETCH. This kind of goes hand in hand with yoga but felt like it deserved it’s own category because it is very different from yoga. ROMWOD, YouTube stretching videos, etc.

7 – Playing a favorite sport. Enjoy basketball, soccer, throwing a ball around? Get outside and play your favorite sport for a while!

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