Two things before we go into this:
- Nothing below should be taken as medical advice/recommendations.
- I am not perfect and definitely can land on the trying to do it all and falling off the wagon sides of the spectrum. #ProgressNotPerfection
I have always disliked the saying “If you can’t beat ’em, join ‘’em.” Seriously? The only possible situation in which this makes sense is if you’re explaining the rules of Red Rover. I have a hard time believing that there is ever a scenario in which you should abandon your beliefs and defect to the other side because thus far you’ve been unsuccessful in your campaign. (If you have an example that proves me wrong, please share in the comments!) Therefore, while I refuse to accept that “#NoDaysOff” is here to stay, I have decided to redefine what it means, bringing it back to the healthy and inspiring phrase I believe (hope!) it was intended to be.
As healthy living and mindfulness have become more prevalent (or at least more visibly apparent thanks to social media), I have seen an increase in the usage of “#NoDaysOff” along with its cousins “Never miss a Monday” and “TGIF: The Grind Includes Friday,” among others. I’m 100% for people dedicating themselves to healthy living, but what I am 0% for is the way these sayings have been imbued with meanings that are anything but and instead are, frankly, harmful.
It’s true that a healthy lifestyle is an everyday thing, not something you can pick up and put down when you feel like it. However, that doesn’t mean that each day has to include exceeding your PR in your fitness method of choice, eating only veggies and protein, and killing it at the office. Just as a day in which you do no physical activity, eat all junk, and do no work isn’t sustainable, neither is going all out. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t always be working towards your goals, but rather that I’ve noticed an increase in people who see these phrases as telling them to always perform at their max, to push as hard as possible in all ways every single day and that is a surefire way to wind up anywhere but at your goals.
For example, I am hard-wired to stay up late and wake up pretty early (thanks for that internal clock Dad). But every now and then my body just says, “Sleep, please!” and as long as I don’t have somewhere I need to be, I do. This might mean that I get out of bed at 10:30am (which compared to my normal wake-up time is akin to noon), but if it’s what I need then so be it and I will be better for giving myself the extra rest in the long run. Other times it might mean I cancel a workout or choose something low-impact instead of what you I had initially planned because my body hasn’t properly recovered and needs some extra time to rebuild itself, again, I’ll be better for it in the long run. Or maybe it’s having pizza for dinner (Note: I love pizza. I know there are healthier options involving cheese and tomatoes as well as ways that I could make a healthier version of pizza but when I want pizza, I want pizza, end of story), or making sure I have time in my schedule for things that will recharge my soul like dinner with friends, a movie, etc. In my book, none of these activities qualify as a day off, they are simply allowing me to live a balanced life and not have the unrealistic goal of always being on.
What do you think? Is it #ballstothewalls all day every day, or can we finally start embracing that being 100% on all the time is the quickest way to wind up 100% burned out and potentially injured?
What do you think of #NoDaysOff? How do you define balance?