Time for a new ‘normal’


This week I went back to work after a 4 month break. I only worked 30 hours but I was shattered! I’m on a phased return. A couple of low intensity weeks, then a weeks holiday (with immediate house moving on my return!), then, as someone asked me ‘will you be back to normal?’.

In my time off I have reflected on what makes a healthy happy life for me and evidently it isn’t what I was doing 6 months ago. I’m a real ‘type A’ personality – I’ve  known that for a very long time. I like to push the boundaries, work hard, achieve things. For many years this has served me quite well. This time last year I had a contract for 48 hrs per week and I worked nearer 60. At Christmas I reduced my contract to 40 hrs, but probably still worked 48.  Now I’m planning to work 40. It’s going to be hard for me, because I will feel guilty even though I shouldn’t! It doesn’t sound much but 8 hrs is 2 hours for 4 days. That’s time to go for a slow, aerobic stress busting run, or to sit quietly and enjoy being alone or to meet up with a friend or family member to drink tea and catch up.

Despite my reduced schedule I only managed 2 runs this week. OK there’s a lot to do with the imminent house move but I know that I am bad at prioritising myself – I often come a poor third after work and immediate family. It’s time to change though. I need to start looking at my week ahead and put those runs in my diary. I used to do it before but would end up ‘running late’ and be too tired anyway.

which reminds me – time I was in bed, I’m getting up to run in the morning!

Take it easy! Slow is better😊


About mawil1

Hi my name is julie and I took up running at the age of 46! Hence 'mawil' Middle Aged Woman In Lycra. I did it at first because someone asked me to do a charity run with them. I couldn't run at all, but pride wouldn't let me be seen to be unable to run so I started a walk run programme. I stuck with it and to my surprise I found that I liked it- after a couple of weeks of progress I was hooked! My blog is about my progress in running and how I fit it in with the rest of my life.
This entry was posted in balance, Careers, change, feminism, fitness, fun, habits, low intensity, maffetone methid, middle aged women, Motivation, positive mental attitude, running, slow run, Stress, time management, Uncategorized, work life balence, working mum. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Time for a new ‘normal’

  1. I don’t work, and I don’t miss it. I was never terribly career driven! Good luck “easing” back into it.

    • mawil1 says:

      Thanks! Working has its pros and cons, likewise being at home. I think the secret is To make the best of what you have, which you appear to do😊

      • I am 100% ok with not working. Although I do miss the extra $$, which is my main motivation for wanting to make a few $$ from my blog. But I’m ok if that doesn’t happen, too.

  2. CeeJayKay says:

    *phew* Just be good to yourself, LISTEN to that body and get back on here to put your thoughts and stuff down… i find it helps to (for want of a tired phrase) get your ducks in a row… it too, is ‘me’ time really.
    Enjoy your runs, you are doing so well with ‘slow’, in fact, you are KILL’n it! so proud of you!!!!!
    AND… take care of J! love ya xxx and well done on getting back into it!

  3. I find I have more energy for work now as well. It’s always a great chance to get rid of the stress hormones. Couldn’t do without work either. Got to have some place to get the type A stuff out and achieve things. 40 hours sounds tough … I mean the stopping part … not getting fully sucked into it …

    • mawil1 says:

      I’m not really there on the energy front yet!! Took 2 salad lunches to work today so that I wouldn’t snack on rubbish (one Stilton walnut and celery, one turkey spinach and watercress) ate them both but was still hungry at 6! And tired by 8 ( after LCHF dinner) Maybe I’m not getting enough slow running in! Re the type A workaholic thing I think it takes one to know what it’s like😊 Though the cartoon was a joke, seriously I worked so hard on ‘managing my stress’ it’s laughable, all the reading etc. But hopefully things will settle into balance somewhere along the line and I’ll be able to do enough to feel good but still have time for other stuff😊 You seem really organised with your running, cooking, work. Are you a natural or did you have to work at it?

      • I worked at it … after my burnout 10 years ago. Took me a bit lol. Are you sure you are getting enough calories? Hungry sounds bad.

      • mawil1 says:

        I haven’t been counting calories – although I did a day a few weeks ago and was surprised to find that I ate fewer calories that day with cooked breakfast and everything than I used to when ‘ watching what I eat’. Because it’s ‘proper food’ I feel like I’m eating more when I suspect that I may be eating less. I used to ramp up a lot of calories with ‘a piece of cake’ or something most days. Even my second lunch wouldn’t have that many calories in, so maybe I need to take 2 lunches and a snack!!! I was fine once I got home and had dinner. So you had the burnout thing too? It’s a shock isn’t it? Never thought something like that would happen to me as I’ve always loved work! But I do see that you have to look after yourself if you are going to look after others so I keep telling myself that when I feel bad about not offering to do more work than I get paid for….!

  4. oscardiamond says:

    I find it difficult to comment without sounding like an agony aunt. Also, I feel my male perspective can seem rather clunky.Men can be such concrete thinkers.Nevertheless, here goes, albeit in a few words.
    You appear to have been worn out and exhausted by the excessive demands of your work because you are very consciencious and feel guilty if you don’t devote maximum time to employing your rare skills.I thought the chief feature of burnout is decreasing concern and interest in the needs of others and that doesn’t seem to be the problem. As you comment, you have to do less to be stronger but not shoot yourself in the foot by feeling guilty and deciding you are neglecting your duty of care.
    With regard to weight and diet, to me it seems simple. Eat three balanced meals at regular intervals with no snacking in between. Go heavy on the veg each day, treat yourself to nice things while maintaining a balanced diet, exercise consistently but not excessively, knock a lot of these calory goals on the head and don’t set yourself anxiety making high standards which result making you feel you’ve failed.
    I hope this doesn’t sound patronising. I don’t seem able to lighten it with jokes at the moment.

    • mawil1 says:

      Yes😊 Was burnt out, now recovered/ing. Am attempting moderation including eating lunch and not calorie restricting😊 All the positives are coming back into focus. It’s going to be OK, don’t worry on my behalf. Thanks Julie x

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