Yesterday was Labor Day, and all the kids are back at school. The neighborhood is quiet, the beach is empty, and rush hour traffic has doubled. Vacations have ended, and incredibly, some stores are already displaying Christmas decorations. Ugh, it gets earlier every year.
When I was growing up, my teachers helped us transition from the lazy days of summer
to the structure of school with a creative writing assignment entitled, “How I spent my summer vacation.” In addition to reawakening the brain cells, this project allowed for a moment of reflection and served as a reminder that maybe we didn’t waste every single day.
For those of us who are well past school age, fall can still be a good time to remind ourselves that we stayed focused on our priorities, even if we abandoned our routine for a short time.
Before I break out my sweaters and boots, I’d like to share some of my summer accomplishments:
- Moved both of my kids into college. I am now in that happy/sad place where I love how clean my house is, but I miss family dinners.
- Consistently maintained my gym routine of 4 workouts per week. Since I am a fitness trainer, it is important that I set a good example for my clients by keeping up with my workouts and proving that it can be done, even during the summer. No excuses, people!
- Participated in 2 obstacle course races including a Spartan Sprint consisting of 5 miles of hills and muddy terrain as well as 25 obstacles. Being 55+ put me in the .01% of total participants, but I crossed the finish line and lived to tell about it, which qualifies this as a success in my book.
- Kept an appropriate work/life balance all summer. I continued to grow my business through networking and tenacity without having to sacrifice time with my family. I’m truly living the dream.
- Went to the beach and swam in the ocean 5 times. I don’t know why I often measure the success of summer by how many times I immersed myself into freezing cold water. But I do, and 5 times is almost a record for someone who lives in New Hampshire.
- Attended concerts of some of my favorite bands. Since my husband is a part time DJ, music occupies about 75% of our life. I was fortunate to see some pretty great shows this summer, including Steely Dan under the stars at a beautiful outdoor venue. It was also a refreshing change to attend a show where most of the audience was my age or better.
- Developed a meaningful professional relationship with a chiropractor, who helped to re-align my body after my foot fracture and will continue to keep me in tip top shape going forward. If you don’t have a chiropractor, get one. This is the most underrated and misunderstood medical professional around. Find a good one and visit often.
- Took some mini vacations with my hubby, including New York City with friends to see the 9/11 Museum and an amazing play and a weekend on a quiet lake in Maine, proving that you don’t need a whole week to decompress.
- Successfully avoided a lot of cooking by insisting that most meals be grilled by my husband. Hey I do enough cooking during the rest of the year. Don’t judge me.
- Ate yummy fresh veggies from our garden. And I sometimes chased them with ice cream.
On the flip side, I do have a few regrets:
- Have not been in my kayak or on my bike a single time this summer. Fortunately, the season for these activities doesn’t end until the snow falls. I’ve still got time.
- Took a few too many liberties with the concept of “moderation” in my diet. I’m approaching the one year mark on my Paleo diet, and I admit that my lack of schedule and structure made it difficult to be as strict as usual. I did my best, but sometimes I had no choice but to eat ice cream or bread. Honest.
- Saw only one summer blockbuster movie. It was the “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes”. It was surprisingly good, but I missed out on many that were on my “must see” list. Thank goodness for movies on demand and Netflix.
- Did not read any summer books. You know, the trashy beach read or the page turning murder mystery. Hoping to remedy this on my upcoming week-long vacation where I plan to give my brain a well-deserved break.
This week I will be re-setting my goals for the months ahead leading to the end of the year. I recommend you do the same because, like it or not, there’s only 17 weeks left in 2014!