25 Little Things I Find Joy In (And You Should Too)

Sometimes, it really is about the little things. As corny as that sounds.

Even though these things go unnoticed by most people, it’s important to me to relish in the small joys in life. Life is full of curve balls and things that throw off our game so I try to find happiness in life’s everyday moments.

Here are some of my favs:

  1. Iced coffee from a local coffee shop (My fav right now is Dancing Goats)
  2. Spending a bright sunny day outside
  3. Meeting a new friend that you click with right away
  4. Taking a cold shower after a sweaty workout
  5. Les Mains nail bar and their fresh designs
  6. Finding the perfect playlist for you mood
  7. A free workout class
  8. Waking up late on a Saturday morning and cuddling
  9. When your computer is fully charged when you open it up for the day
  10. Getting lost in a book and loosing track of time
  11. A perfectly ripe avocado
  12. Random dance breaks in the living room
  13. Reading old journey entries
  14. Listing to a podcast in the car (been into true crime lately)
  15. Making a baby smile in public
  16. Laughing so hard you cry
  17. Looking through old family photos
  18. Eating fresh food & herbs from my garden
  19. When my smoothie is the percent consistency
  20. Sitting in silence with a good friend and not feeling awkward
  21. Making conversation with a stranger in public
  22. Electrolyte water
  23. Randomly getting flowers (either for myself or as a gift!)
  24. Cleaning out my closet
  25. A good back crack

These are just some small & random things that bring me joy. I’d love to hear what you guys find joy in the comments. 🙂

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ILY,

nutMeg

5 Mins a Day: Stretch It Out

Stretching is one thing that hasn’t been a part of my wellness routine for a while! UGH I know, horrible!

I grew up as a dancer so stretching was always a part of my daily routine. I would stretch before class, after and at home to improve flexibility. Once I started college and stopped dancing/cheer, stretching became less important for me. No need to break out a toe touch.

I would do a quick quad stretch after hitting up the gym but didn’t really think about it too much. It wasn’t until recently when I started working out more intensely that I was reminded of the importance of stretching.

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I was getting cramps all of the time and my muscles were so sore! Like not normal. I had to make a mental note to actually stay and stretch for at least 5 mins after my workout to prevent some soreness. Some if just unavoidable!

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Also, I got the opportunity to try out Motion Stretch, a professional stretching studio. Who knew that was even a thing!? They basically lay you down on a table and work on your muscles through different stretches and by pushing into the muscles. I loved it because they focus on the whole body, not just a specific muscle group (although during intake they ask if you have any specific injuries/pain they should focus on). Stretching with a professional can help prevent injury (my biggest fear) and increases elasticity. However, I will say it was very intense. I’m not sure if it’s because I have a low pain tolerance or I was just super tight. Probably both!

They told me a lot of their clients are athletes or people that just like to workout like me, but some of their clients are 9-5’ers who experience neck/back pain. So, they can help with a variety of clients.

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Before I left they encouraged me to stretch at home and walked me through how that should look. What I took away- make sure your body is warmed up and start from the bottom up. So, start with calves, move up to quads, biceps/triceps, neck. You get it!

I’m really going to try and do this for at least 5 mins a day, just to feel less tight and prevent soreness.

If you want to try Motion Stretch, they have a ton of locations!

P.S. Your first stretch is free!!

 

 

ILY,

nutMeg

 

My Wellness Journey

My wellness journey and how I found balance in my life.

This post has literally been in my drafts since June 2017…I could never bring myself to post it because I thought I needed to reach a specific goal first. That “goal” is arbitrary and I can still provide value even if I’m not at my “goal weight”. And you know what? I’m so over having a goal weight…

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So, in honor of my 1 year blog anniversary I thought it was fitting to share my wellness journey.

This all began senior year of high school after I had stopped cheerleading & dancing (AKA structured workouts). I didn’t know how to workout on my own and I started to gain a little weight, nothing crazy though.

I struggled with binge eating. AKA (for me) being super healthy in front of everyone during the day and snacking in a mindless state when alone.  The amount I ate was uncontrollable and shameful. I would often cry afterwords. It was a very dark time for me.

During this time I was still constantly restricting myself during the day to try and “get skinny” and then would totally over indulge and binge at night.

 

If you have ever struggled with this you know exactly what I felt. In the moment there is literally no control and after you binge you feel so much sadness and shame.

As you can imagine, this was a very draining way to live. Constantly going back in forth with restricting and binging.

So, I started to do some research on “healthy foods” so I could maybe eat like a normal person. Such a foreign concept at that point! From there on I was obsessed with learning about what foods did for your body and the benefits they provided.

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Flash-forward…In college I was one who ordered a salad at the pizza joint. Yep, that girl.

Sometimes (and this is horrible) I would even tell my friends I couldn’t hang out with them or go somewhere because I didn’t feel comfortable with the food options that would be available. I was “happy” to stay home by myself and make my little salad with chicken. Sorry I was so anti social roomies.

At this point I was so obsessed with my weight and tracking every single thing I ate. Hello My Fitness Pal. (BOOO!!)

My senior year of college is when I decided enough was enough. I just didn’t have the mental capacity to keep up with all of the food rules that I had made for myself and keeping tabs on every single thing I ate.

From there I kinda swung in the completely opposite direction, which was exactly what I needed. I allowed myself to eat without guilt and let me tell you, I did.

After a while I realized I was satisfied not restricting but I also still wanted be the healthiest version of myself.

Finding true balance was a challenge. I wanted so desperately to be healthy but also not be too extreme as to restrict myself again.

I found true love and happiness in eating healthy foods.

When I keep in mind what the foods I’m putting into my body are doing for me, I am satisfied eating my healthy foods and not feeling restricted at the same time.

So here’s where I am now…

I am happy with the balance I’ve created in my life. I no longer feel the pressure of saying, “no” to the dessert at a dinner party. If I want that cupcake, I’m going to have it!!

Balance to me means making healthy choices the majority of the time and when you do want to indulge, you don’t feel guilty. Trust me, this wasn’t an easy place to get to but I am so grateful for my strength to make it here.

Another thing that has helped with this balance is making healthier versions of comfort foods. Now I love making healthy tacos, Simple Mills pancakes and zucchini noodles instead of pasta. I find joy in cooking healthy food for myself and my husband!

My wellness journey isn’t over and I’m still trying to find the foods that work best for my body but how I think about food is SO different now, which is huge for me.

Thanks for following along with A Dash Of nutMeg for the past year, I look forward to sharing more for a long time to come with you guys!

 

ILY,

nutMeg

 

P.S. If you haven’t seen my IG Giveaway, check it out here.

 

My Thoughts On Spin Classes

If you knew me a year ago, you’d know for sure that I was a spin bunny. I had just moved to ATL and was getting into the fitness scene here. There is a spin studio within walking distance of my apartment, so perfect. I feel in love with spin in college because it was the one class offered at my gym that actually made me sweat and push myself, so I had to keep up my habit post grad.

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I really did think that the more I went, the skinnier I would be. You see all of these runners & avid spinners who are thin, I thought I could look like that too. (WTF- Looking back I know my body type just isn’t built that way)

After a few months I started branching out to different studios and switching up my workouts a little bit more, cutting back on spin. Although, I would feel SO guilty if I didn’t get spin in twice a week.

I started working with a personal trainer after being fed up about not getting results for myself. After talking to her about my current workout routine, she told me that too much cardio like spin actually is working against me. My mind was blown. UGH. We work on building muscle because my ultimate goal is to have a toned and strong body (not skinny). By doing so many spin classes, I’m actually burning off that muscle I worked so hard to build. RIP!! 

So, now I do one class a week so I can get my spin fix and to sweat out a ton! Not to say I’m not doing cardio anymore, but just not spin where I burn 500 calories each time multiple times a week.

Everyone is different and this is what is working for me and my goals, so take this advice with a grain of salt. Just because you see someone doing a certain workout or eating a certain way on IG, doesn’t mean it’ll work for you!

 

 

ILY,

nutMeg

Why I Write “The Morning Pages”

Why I Started “The Morning Pages”

My morning routine is sacred. It is by far my favorite part of the day. Wake up, open the blinds, workout, get ready and have some alone time before the craziness begins. Now my morning routine, no matter what, includes The Morning Pages.

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This idea comes from the book The Artist’s Way, which admittedly I have not read. The Morning Pages are three pages of stream of consciousness writing. Every. Single. Morning.

They don’t have to be organized in any way, or about a specific topic. They are more of a brain dump. I’ve always been a journal-er but in the past it was just a way for me to express my personal feelings, not to spark ideas.

Meant to inspire creativity and move through a block, I think The Morning Pages can be beneficial for everyone. It is kinda like thinking through your day before actually jump in.

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The first day I wasn’t really sure where the writing exercise would bring me and I kinda just wrote a stream of consciousness about how I was feeling that day. Through the next couple of days I got more used to writing the three pages and found I was inspiring myself. I thought of blog ideas, worked through feelings and gave myself props for what I had accomplished and that felt good. I really make an effort to to be negative when writing them to start my day on the right foot.IMG_3070.jpg

Now I can’t go a day without The Morning Pages. I am a habits driven person for sure which keeps me accountable. I like a structure, ok?

Only one rule: Write three pages every day.

I challenge you to try it and see what ideas spark!

 

ILY,

nutMeg