Back to Reality

Tiffany, Ania & I burned some calories keeping warm in the cold!

Tiffany, Ania & I burned some calories keeping warm in the cold!

No, I didn't work out here, but had to stop for a photo!

No, I didn’t workout here, but had to stop for a photo!

I know I tend to offer a shot of motivation on Mondays. On this particular Monday, I have to say I feel more motivated than I have in recent memory. All it took was a trip to Amsterdam.

Whether you hop on a plane and fly across the Atlantic like I did or getaway for a few hours to a spa or even a quiet restaurant with a special someone in your life, there’s something to be said about escaping the realities of our everyday lives.

For me, that escape included forgoing my normal typical daily high-intensity workouts to relish in daily walking adventures in a beautiful, new city. We visited museums; sampled the local flavors in various cafes; boosted the economy with trips to flea markets and shops; escaped the cold on a heated canal cruise and then braved the frigid temperatures to see some windmills up close.

LauraLovesFitness..and chocolate & banana pancakes!

LauraLovesFitness..and chocolate & banana pancakes!

My escape also included hot chocolate, chocolate waffles, chocolate and banana pancakes (are you sensing a trend here?), some of the most amazing breads and cheeses I’ve ever had, Amstel and Heineken on draft and other libations that kept the bone-chilling temperatures from making things too uncomfortable. Last but certainly not least, there were countless laughs and lighthearted conversations with my gal pals – one of whom is among the special few I’ve had the joy of knowing since childhood.

You could say I “abandoned” my normally fit New York lifestyle to embrace a different approach to healthy living in Amsterdam. This is a city where people actually sit down to drink a cup of coffee and it’s not easy to find a to-go cup. It’s a place where people walk or use bicycles to get from points A to Z on a normal basis and where many shop owners don’t open their business until Monday afternoon – and still close at 6 pm. Compared to the incessant frenetic pace of my city that never sleeps, this vacation was a welcome respite.

All smiles over real hot chocolate!

All smiles over real hot chocolate!

Don’t get me wrong. I love being a native New Yorker. However, I just can’t stress enough the importance of taking a break from the ordinary every now and then. When I am home, that break involves hitting the gym to let go of the stress from the daily grind. After time, my body and my mind need to escape from that routine, too.  Throw in some real chocolate and other delicious treats, and I definitely like I’m away. I also believe that sometimes you need to be a little bad to get back to being good.

So, as we tackle a new week, I do so with a renewed love for my “routine” breakfasts filled with berries and lunches complete with chopped veggies.  Thanks for sticking with me while I was away. If you have questions or topics you’d like me to address in the weeks ahead, don’t be shy! I look forward to seeing where the next part of the adventure leads on our never-ending journey to have fun, be fit and feel fabulous!

Good food, drinks & conversation offered some fitness for the mind!

Good food, drinks & conversation offered some fitness for the mind!

About LauraLovesFitness

After spending more than 10 years in the communications industry, this lifetime fitness lover and newly certified fitness professional wants to share my passion for health and well-being with others.

Posted on January 28, 2013, in Fitness, Health, Nutrition and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Laura,

    i’m so happy you had this great opportunity- and took it. Your joy shines through in the photos. Also glad you’re home safe and back to your inspiring fitness work.

    Of course no worries about me “sticking with you.” Think we’re stuck for good.

    Send good thoughts my way. Tore up my ankle couple months ago on a trail run- no running since, but still exercise bike etc. Seeing the orthopedic surgeon Friday to discuss options.

    But life is good, better than ever.

    Wishing you all good things.


    • Thanks for the kind words, Tom! And I wouldn’t consider myself being “stuck” with you, I’m so grateful to have your unwavering support!
      Let me know how things go with the doctor today. I am sending good vibes…and good for you for sticking with a fitness routine despite the injury. Take good care of yourself!
      All the best,

  2. Laura,

    Definitely received those good vibes.

    Just back from surgeon. Trying steroid injection into the joint. On his advice, will start slowly next week to run again. Intermittent regimen. Four minutes walk, one minute run, spread over 30 minutes. Then following week, three minutes walk, two minutes run etc.

    I’m really eager to start folding running back into the training but will for sure follow the routine. I have to be careful not to push myself beyond what I’m prepared for. Twice in recent years I’ve sustained injuries on trail runs pushing the envelope too far. Three years ago, I pushed too hard and tore calf muscle. Will be patient this time.

    Your friendship is a great blessing to me. Thanks.


    • Hi Tom,
      Glad to hear you got a slow but promising bit of wisdom from the surgeon. It’s amazing how not being patient is one of the easiest ways for us to get injured…and stay injured! Good for you for making the commitment to listen to your body and heal this time – it will be worth it in the long run. This is a topic I’ve written about before, but between your story and another friend who is recovering from the flu and also taking it slow for the first time ever, I see a possible new post about patience in my future. Thanks for the inspiration!
      Have a happy and healthy weekend, my kind friend!

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