Lifestyle Audit


I can’t believe how long it’s taken me to get this post together, but… it’s time for me to check in and see where I’m at on my path to living a healthy lifestyle. (Sorry for the clichĂ©, anyone have a better term for this?) Being healthy is something I value highly and living my life according to that value is very important to me. As we all know, it’s not always easy to live a healthy life. It can be very hard sometimes. I certainly struggle with it. Old habits are hard to break. But it’s important to me, so I will continue to pursue it. I know I’m getting better at it, in the big picture. So let’s just see how I grade myself on the last 5 or so months.


Weight – B

Since May, I have not been actively trying to lose weight. So why do I give myself such a high grade as ‘B’? Because I’m so happy that I haven’t gained any weight back. This entire time I maintained the same weight. I admit to eating a lot of unhealthy foods (see below). I think one key to maintaining for me is to listen carefully to my sense of hunger. Am I hungry? Am I full now? Do I want to eat for a reason other than hunger. I try to stop eating when I am full and not overeat. Overeating = weight gain, for me. I’m not saying I spent a lot of mental energy on this, it’s just natural for me now.

Another key to maintaining for me is exercise. The past few months has been running exclusively. I’m not really a running blogger, but running has been consuming my life lately. Thoughts, reading, doing, shopping, planning, racing, socially. I love it and can’t get enough of it. For me, running gives me energy, burns a lot of calories, and boosts my mood.

To leave the overweight BMI category, I need to lose another 10-12 pounds. I would like to lose another 10 pounds beyond that to feel comfortable. Even though that would put me at a weight higher than my younger days, I’m trying to be realistic and not expect to be as thin as I used to be.


Exercise – B

I’m really happy with my level of dedication and commitment to exercising. I’m not so happy that I have focused on running only and avoided strengthening exercises. I think the hard part is the dedication and commitment, so I’ll give myself an overall pretty high grade of ‘B’.


Eating and Drinking – D

Yes, this lack of effort earns a solid ‘D’. That’s an almost failing grade. It’s not failing though, because I have maintained my weight and I do eat some healthy foods. But, I have eaten way too much junk. White flour and sugar junk. I’d have to say I drank more alcohol than I would like to. All those summer festivals and cookouts. Lots of summer junk!

Overall Grade on Living a Healthy Lifestyle – C

I don’t mean ‘C’ in the sense of average. I have no idea what an average attempt at living a healthy lifestyle would look like. I mean that grade in terms of where I was, where I’d like to be, and what my effort has been towards getting where I’d like to be. So, not failing. But plenty of room for improvement.

Moving forward

It’s pretty clear to me what to do. My goals have not changed. There’s no magic pixie dust that will help me achieve my goals. Pretty much just have to do it. I’ve done it before. This is a reality check that I could do better at this. And furthermore, I want to do better at it. I believe my level of self esteem hinges on living my life according to the things I value.

Do you ever grade yourself?

How would you rate your lifestyle in terms of healthiness?

Are you happy with your lifestyle or always trying to do better?

Chain Lakes Trail – Mt. Baker Wilderness


I finally have to say good-bye to summer. I dragged summer through September because I wasn’t ready to move on. Our summer was pretty lame around here. It rained a lot and never got very hot. At the end of September I visited my brother and went for the best hike I’ve ever done. Even better than the ones I took last spring, here, here, and here. First, I had a hiking buddy this time. My sister-in-law chose the hike for the two of us. A long 8 mile hike up and down through the mountains in the wilderness in black bear country. Second, the views were amazing. Something from the movies. Or a postcard. Indescribably gorgeous. And serene. And quiet. If you stopped and listened, you heard nothing! Not a car, not a TV, not a voice, not a phone. Nothing. Third, I was in much better shape. I even got adventurous and tried some running. Walking on the trails is hard enough not to twist an ankle. Running was a little scary! But fun.

Most of the trail was single person wide. Quite a bit of it was slippery mud. The rest was rocks, ranging from gravel all the way up to boulder climbing. Being in the mountains, there were plenty of stream crossings. Most were about 1-2 ft across with 1-3 inches of flowing water. Most of the trail was decorated with wild blueberries, a little past their prime, but still very edible.

We started at about 4700 ft elevation. The air was thin and took some getting used to. We went up and down a lot. Our first peak height reached was about 5200 ft. Then back down to about 4700 ft around the lakes. Our second peak height was about 5500 ft, then down to about 4200 ft around another lake. Then back up to the car.

Enjoy the views with me:

Looking back on the trail that came straight across that steep slope.

Looking back on the trail that came straight across that steep slope.


I ran alongside this rushing, babbling waterfalling mountain stream-river. How cool is that?


Uhoh, which way does the trail go?

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