Time For A Reboot!

After two weeks of holiday activities, getting back on track can be a challenge, both emotionally and physically, for some of us.

I spent the holidays surrounded by family, friends, and lots of tempting food almost every day for the past two weeks. That’s about the same amount of time it takes to form a new habit. I want to make sure I don’t slip into the bad habit of eating fruitcake and drinking champagne every day! That means it’s time for a reboot.

Yesterday our weather was beautiful, and the temperatures were in the mid-sixties, so I took a long brisk walk in the neighborhood for about three miles. I had my early morning power porridge for breakfast and avocado toast for lunch. For the rest of the day, I drank lots of water but did not have more food. An occasional fast helps to reboot my digestive system.

We ran a few errands to free up today for what will surely be a hectic workday. I wore a black high-low cashmere sweater from Neiman Marcus Last Call. The scarf and jeans are both old from Chico’s. I tied the long rectangle shape scarf in an infinity knot. (Tie a tiny knot in the very ends and then wrap it around your neck twice.) The wine-colored flats worn without socks are by Franco Sarto. The bag is by Zac Posen via Saks Off 5th. The sunglasses are old by Balmain also from Saks Off 5th. The simple silver hoop earrings were a long-ago gift from Mr. Mickey.

Today I have an appointment with my doctor for my yearly physical. These visits are imperative because I need to know my health numbers, including blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar, and body mass index (BMI), and assess their risk for heart disease and stroke.

It takes about three weeks to break our addictions to sugar, fat, and salt. It also takes about that long to form a bad habit. I am determined not to let myself slip into eating the wrong things and sitting around too much during the coming winter. That means I have purged all the unhealthy food gifts from my home, and my yoga mat is ready for some daily pilates or yoga. I do some form of exercise each day, and I am always active during the day. I never sit still for very long!

I am, by nature, an introvert. Spending time alone can be both a blessing and a curse. Too much alone time can be very depressing, even for me. I know I must make an effort to enjoy the company of my friends often. It’s all about balance and honoring our natural tendencies.

  1. You inspire me, too, Susan. Your comments about being an introvert really hit home. I’m invoIved in several activities and cherish my friends, but I definitely enjoy time alone…to the point where I need to be careful that I don’t overdo it. I love your outfit today…and the tip about changing regular scarves into infinity…great idea! Thank you…and have a wonderful day!

  2. Thank you for the inspiration. The dark, colder days of winter can make it easier to slip into inactivity and other “slothful” (a word my mother used to use) habits. I retired this year from a very active teaching career, and I have found it helpful to make a daily schedule that balances physical, social, and intellectual habits. Wishing you all the best in the New Year!

  3. Great advice and what a simple yet elegant outfit. January is also the month I go for blood tests for cholesterol etc and have my yearly mammogram (family history of breast cancer) and so far, so good.

  4. How I wish I could visit your region today. As I look out at 12 inches of snow, it takes all I can muster to leave the house. If I had my way, I would stay in from December to April. Thankfully, I take an exercise class each day which forces me out. And it helps that I love my classmates! Instant socialization.

    It is also a challenge to take care of your appearance in this weather. All people see are your coat and boots. It is easy to sneak out wearing all kinds of frightening things. Now I ask, “Would Susan go out like this?” Your blog keeps me in line.

  5. Thank you so much for this post. Although I *know* this stuff, I still needed to have it said to me once again.

    After reading today’s post, I am more encouraged about getting back on the band wagon. I’d been a bit *dis*couraged. Thanks for reminding us that a new habit does not take hold in just a day or so.

    Blessings to you and your family.

  6. You ARE an inspiration on how to live life with class and grace. Thank you for the time it takes to publish this blog and give us over 60 women guidelines for living our best lives.

  7. You really put things in perspective. Thanks as I really neede to hear this especially as the year begins. Two weeks is not long in the scheme of things but time enough to begin to effect big change or simply maintain good habits. Thanks again.

  8. As usual you are a timely inspiration. Yesterday I dug my yoga mat out of the back of the wardrobe and did a few poses. I’m determined not to sloth away the winter. It’s wet and gray here in SC but that’s no excuse for staying in. I can always walk the mall. I love the casual yet chic look you have today with the burgundy shoes.

  9. Thank you for some timely gentle reminders. I am not a disciplined person by nature and reading your posts and seeing how you have benefited has greatly inspired me. Being an introvert is not a bad thing…

  10. I have forgotten the brand and kind of undergarment that you wear to help flatten stomach area….I wear size 0 in Chico clothes and always pause when ordering other brands on line…..I enjoy your posts and wish you and Mr. Mickey an awesome 2017….

  11. Love the flats; such a great pop of color. And thanks for the very gentle and kind kick in the bum. Instead of letting the dog out the back door to run around his leash is going on and we are going to walk. Even though it’s wet and chills you to the bone with a hood up, scarf on and rain boots (and his fur coat of course) we’re good to go. And hopefully keep it up every day. Thanks Susan for bring so inspiring and uplifting.

  12. You look absolutely wonderful, Susan! And you are indeed an inspiration, even with your attitude towards the holliday’s ‘bad habits’! Thank you for your blog and thank you for sharing your joy of living beautifully! I wish you from all my heart a happy New Year, in full health and beauty!

  13. Susan, thank you for that gently reminder! After putting away all of the Christmas decorations, I also threw out all of the candy, cookies and extra holiday treats. I am reminded to move more and eat less!! Happiness to you in 2017…


  14. I’ve done the purging part this morning. The food was my downfall the past month, that included two family birthdays plus the holidays. I exercised all through the past few weeks…like you…something every day…pilates, yoga, spinning or working with a trainer. I’ve also started guided meditation classes at my YMCA. Rebooting has begun. Yay!

  15. I needed to read this today! I am definitely needing a reboot. After Christmas I always crave more chocolate and sugar…determined to get back on track however. Have been getting out for my regular daily walks, but here in Canada its freezing! I dress in layers and as long as its not icy I walk outside, if not I always have my treadmill and some exercise dvds. I am also an introvert and tend to not socialize enough during the winter months…this is something I have to work on.
    Thanks for the pep talk Susan! Have a great day

  16. Happy New Year Susan..Yes you do inspire me to be a better all round person..I too am an introvert and still trying to find a healthy balance of me and others.I just don’t feel good indulging in all this say, junk food and no exercise..Time to reboot..i am going to start by going and shovelling my driveway..I live in Winnipeg [Winterpeg] Canada and so far this winter we have had over 68 cm.,not including what we had last night..Better get to it…

  17. Thanks for the encouragement! I’ve been powering through the holidays with a bad sinus infection, and have been a lazy slug the last few days taking naps and lounging. Today I’ve decided I must get up and move, despite the uckiness. I may not be back to working out until later this week, but I’ll start doing some simple warm ups and get on with the de-cluttering and planning for the year. Now I’m excited!

  18. All this food at a time of year when daylight is short, sidewalks are icy and outdoor clothing is puffy — is it any wonder that people gain weight during this season? It’s the worst combination.

    Thanks for the reminder to hit restart. It’s time for me to substitute kale salads with pumpkin seeds for the treats that have added too many calories in weeks past.

    As for rekindling friendships, I find this is hard to do in January when people don’t want to go outside in -20C. temperatures. There have been so many get-togethers over Christmas that cocooning seems to be top of the list.

  19. Happiest of New Year! Reading about diets , protein is always stressed as a needed component in our meals. Besides protein drinks – shakes etc. , what forms of protein do you incorporate in your diet? Yoga has been a new form of exercise for me. It us something I look forward to not ” have ” to do. What new forms of exercise have you found to be fun and challenging?

    1. I do not use any protein drinks or shakes. There are many ways to get protein as a vegetarian. You can read about some of my favorite sources here. Brisk walks are by far my favorite form of exercise. I used to hike, mountain bike and kayak but these days, I mostly do pilates or go for a long walk. Stretching and staying flexible helps with balance.

  20. Hello Susan,
    I do so enjoy reading your blog, and I feel a real affinity towards you, even though I live in a different country, so much of what you say resonates with me, it’s like having a lovely pen pal who you will never meet but who inspires you and who you can totally relate to. Thank you so much for your blog.

  21. Thankfully for us in New Zealand it’s summer so exercising post Christmas is less challenging. However, we are still guilty of having far too many sweet treats in the pantry courtesy of well meaning friends and family. Last January was my epiphany when the bathroom scales shouted “this is not a team event, one at a time please”! I lost 11kg (24 pounds) and feel fantastic. My new wardrobe is coming together well with your assistance.

  22. I agree too much time alone gets depressing and I plan on getting out more this year. Thanks for this post and Enjoy every minute of everyday.

  23. Susan, I feel it is time to let you know I am (or was) one of those daily readers of your blog who never comment Well,I have changed that! I enjoy reading your blog so much. You inspire me to eat healthier and continue to exercise. I enjoy your fashion posts since I too am “after 60”. Your makeup tutorial was wonderful especially for the eyes. Thank you so much for your blog.

  24. Susan, when do you find is the best time to do your floor exercises? Are they part of your morning routine before you put on jeans and jewelry? Would you share your routine with us?

    1. In the winter, I start to get brain fog late in the afternoon, so that is the best time for me to do my exercises. I normally wake up at 3:30 AM or earlier, so by 3 PM I am not the sharpest knife in the drawer. If I take a break for at least a half hour to stretch and move enough to get the blood flowing, I can get through the rest of my day. By 7 PM I always leave my office and all screens behind to do a few chores, clean my face, soak in the tub and then read a book until I fall asleep around 9. In the warm weather months, I walk before the sun gets too high in the sky, about 7 AM.

  25. It is very interesting to me to see how you have evolved in your eating choices. What I am curious about is what do you do about an evening meal with your husband on a day-to-day basis? I think you are quite lovely and elegant!

    1. Eating only two meals on most days serves me well. I always gain weight and feel very sluggish and I never sleep well when I eat an evening meal, no matter how light. Breakfast is about two hours after I rise. Lunch is mid-after noon about six hours later. After that, I only drink purified water and maybe have an orange if I feel hungry later. Mr. Mickey and I are not married nor do we live together but he is happy with skipping the evening meal most of the time also. We are less active as we age so we need fewer calories. My results have come back from my Dr. visit yesterday. BP 118 / 70 and I have lost the four pounds I gained over the holidays. I take no medications, supplements or vitamins.

  26. Love the scarf! Unlike a lot of people, I really dislike the high heat and humidity of southern summers, so I find our short winters very refreshing! When I can’t walk outside due to bad weather, I go to our local mall which opens early for walkers. It’s dry, pleasant and there are usually quite a few walkers, which is a good opportunity to be cheerful and friendly to others, particularly the older folks who may not get out as much.
    I enjoy your blog!

  27. As a child at a school where I once taught said to me as she passed by on her way to music, “Love your shoes!” Happy New Year, Susan!

  28. hi Susan. I just want to say Thank you for sharing your knowledge and own experience with us even though you don’t know us. You have been such an inspiration to me mostly because we are almost the same age (I am from november/56). This year one of my resolutions is to be more active and look after my meals. Thank you very much and I wish you the best for this new year.

  29. Happy New Year, Susan. As always, you are an inspiration for me to rethink my closet and clothing purchases. Only buy what you love and what looks good on you. Basics that will work with color palette already in your closet. My new years resolution. I was wondering if you wear walking shoes/clothes when you take your walk and if so, what brands do you recommend? Thank you.

  30. Good for you that you are so healthy! It is very admirable that you don’t have to take any medications or supplements. I take a handful every morning 🙁 Love reading your blog–you are an inspiration!

  31. Susan such great advice. By the way, I like the look of what you are wearing. A little more casual for a day out and about doing for yourself.

  32. Oh how I love this. We moved to Atlanta Georgia in August from New York City. We drove back to New York for the Christmas/New Year holiday and the drives consisted of lots of take out food….our visit was met with breakfast, lunches and dinners out with friends every day….and now I sit on my computer waiting for the snow to begin…..this definitely was an article I needed to read. I have my fitbit on my wrist and it buzzes when I sit too long which is also a wonderful reminder. I will now finish this comment and get moving once again. Thank you for this fabulous post.

  33. I so enjoy your blog. I am 67 and try hard to limit sugar from my diet. I have 10 pounds I need to loose but am struggling with it. You always give me encouragement when I read your blog. I read one of your articles about what style of eyeglasses to wear with a round face. I neglected to pin it. Do you still have that in your old postings? Could you tell me which one? Thank you. Have a great day.

    1. I always go the opposite of my round face. I look for long earrings and square glasses. Try to find a thinner frame that gives you only one set of eyebrows and balances with the size of your face. Good luck!

  34. So happy to have found your post.I have been catching up reading them the last couple of days.Gorgeous photos,great advice about fashion and healthy life style.I look forward to your future posts.

  35. Hello Susan, have just discovered you and so inspired by your style and ideas. So wonderful to see fashion that is tasteful and practical for the over 60! Am taking an overseas trip in March so have checked out all you have to offer on packing and getting best use from a limited range of items.
    Thank you, love your work.

  36. I thoroughly enjoy your posts. I totally related to this post. Weight gain after three weeks of holiday eating or vacationing can be a struggle. But best to acknowledge the weight gain and turn things around as quickly as possible. Another great outfit that looks great on you. A tall gal, I have become fond of the slim ankle pant. I think it’s a nice look in jeans or pants. I have recently purged my closet of pants, jeans, crop pants that I’m not wearing because when it’s time to get dressed, I’m reaching for better fitting, better looking outfits. If bell bottoms come back into Vogue, I’ll consider buying them then.

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I share tips and inspiration for using what you already have in contemporary ways. Defining words include effortless, classic, refined, discreet, and elegant. My style is chic, minimal, and timeless with a bit of edge.