Hey everyone! I’ve got another fabulous healthy living blogger to introduce you to! This chica is one of my favorite bloggers, and I love keeping up with her! I feel like we have so much in common, and I wish we could be friends in real life! I know you will love reading along as much as I do!
But, before I introduce you to Mrs. Jana Antil, I have an update to yesterday’s post! I went to our local specialty running store here in Little Rock last night and told this poor salesman my long winded story about my training and new shoes and the pain I’ve been having. I asked him for his most honest opinions and to not try and sell me on a specific shoe, but to tell me what he would do if he were in my position. I’m really caught between a rock and a hard place…running my marathon in my new shoes that hurt my feet/ankle or wear my old worn down shoes that may or may not cause another injury on top of everything! OR purchase a brand new shoe that might solve my problem all together and hopefully break them in time? Neither of the first two options sounded very appealing, so I went to our Fleet Feet and spent an hour trying on different shoes and having them analyze my gait and my feet and everything. They were fantastic! I seriously can’t speak enough kind words about them! Long story short, (I’ll give you a more detailed breakdown about the thought process behind our shoe selection later this week), he put me in a neutral shoe, combined with my orthotics, and I think it’s going to be a great match! FINALLY!! I’m going to order the Brooks Ghost 6. And fingers crossed, they take me across that 26.2 finish line!
I know, totally not as cute as my teal/lime green Ravenna 4’s, but I’m willing to deal. I’ll take a less attractive shoe over pain any day!
Ok, let’s get down to business! (to defeat the Huns)
Jana Antil is the voice behind the adorable healthy living blog, Happy Wife Healthy Life. She blogs about her newlywed life, fun recipes, her fitness journey, and lots more! I usually ask my featured bloggers to answer a list of interview style questions, but this time Jana has written a full guest post! I’ll let her tell you all about herself! Enjoy!
Hello Sweet Miles Readers!
My name is Jana Antil and I am the blogger behind Happy Wife Healthy Life. I graduated from Ohio State’s journalism program in June 2010, and soon after realized how much I craved writing and sharing my thoughts with others. Since my day job did not fulfill this creative need, I began blogging in December 2012 as a (very public) creative outlet!
On my blog Happy Wife Healthy Life, I share my adventures as a newlywed, along with recipe creations, foodie finds, health and wellness discoveries, fashion tips and ideas, fitness aspirations, home decorating, party planning, puppy tales, and my journey of finding a balance amongst it all!
I love reading Sarah’s blog on a regular basis, partially because of how much we have in common; we are both newlyweds; we both have absolutely adorable black labs (Sarah, I know you agree!!); and we both enjoy health, fitness, and oh yes, good food of course!
Today I just wanted to share with all of you a little about my own personal health and fitness experiences. I am not a triathlete, bodybuilder or marathoner, but I believe we all have our own individual journeys and stories to tell, so here is mine!
Being active has always been a passion of mine. From ages 6 to 14, I spent the majority of my time outside of school at gymnastics. I had 3 ½ hour practices, four days a week for years while training for compulsory and optional competitions. Because I was young with a fast metabolism and exercising so much, I was able to eat whatever I wanted without a second thought given to watching my weight.
After I dislocated and fractured my left elbow twice, I decided it was time to retire my leotard for good as I entered my freshmen year of high school. It didn’t take long for me to transition into my new love though almost immediately: competitive cheerleading.
Once again, I was able to stay healthy and active without purposely trying. However, the number and intensity of practices decreased dramatically from gymnastics to cheerleading, so the thought of weight entered my mind for the first time, and let me just say it was a bit scary! Because of this, I slowly began changing my eating habits to reflect my new exercise regimen. No longer were double cheeseburgers and fries consumed multiple times a week, or half a dozen cookies inhaled as an afternoon snack.
After graduating from high school, I had to plan out my own exercise schedule. Cheerleading and gymnastics were always fun and the workouts that came with the activities were simply a perk! In college I didn’t have organized sports to keep my workouts scheduled, so I had to come up with new ways to exercise. I loved participating in group fitness classes that were offered, such as cycling and yoga. I also found joy in running and would happily lace up my sneakers and head out my dorm for a run across OSU’s campus. However, too much cardio and not enough rest, strength training, and proper fuel set me up for a bad case of mono during the fall quarter of my freshmen year. It took me years to battle back from a weakened immune system, but over time I began realizing the changes required to ensure a healthy body and mind.
In the fall of 2008, I decided to learn more about true healthy living by doing research and seeing health counselors employed by the university. The mono had wiped out my immune system to the point that I wondered if I would ever be able to run and exercise again without getting the flu, strep throat, or even mono again. (Yes, I was diagnosed with mono twice; in both the fall of ’07 and’08!)
My immune system was shot, but I knew at 20 years old I was too young to just settle with where my health had fallen. A prescription to sleep 14+ hours a day no longer felt like an option. I wanted to feel better, so I looked for help. What worked for me you may ask?
-Full 8-10 hours of sleep each night
-Listening to my body
-Workout intensity variations depending on how I feel
-Amazing Grass (I have written about this product on my blog quite a few times. I still stand behind my belief that it boosted my immune system like nothing else!)
Slowly, I became able to incorporate more exercise back into my life, including running and cycling classes when properly balanced with enough of the above healthy activities. Yoga became one of my favorite workouts for low-level intensity days.
My goal for health was encouraged even more while interning at the Student Wellness Center during my senior year at OSU, and that passion has only continued to grow every year since. It was during college that I also found healthy living blogs and began to read and learn more about how to fuel properly for exercise and what to eat for nourishment and health. So long low-fat processed carbohydrates and calorie counting, and hello real nutrition like whole grains, lean proteins, more fruits and veggies, and plenty of healthy fats like olive oil, peanut butter and avocado.
This was a big change in the way I thought about food, but it was also a positive and much needed change as well. Because of this, my health and body began to respond quicker than the past and I slowly yet surely started to bounce back to my active self. I even trained for and completed my first half-marathon, the Capital City Half Marathon, during my last quarter at OSU!
Today, I still continue trying to find that healthy balance in life! After graduating, I went on to run another half-marathon, this time The Flying Pig in May 2012 along with my husband, Tim. My every day exercise routine includes a couple short runs a week with my sweet lab, Tebow. We also go on plenty of weekly family walks, and I do 3-4 days a week of strength training combined with shortened HIIT workouts, and a day or so of yoga each week.
Through my experiences, I have realized just how important it is to give the body and mind the proper amount of rest, nourishment and exercise that you need! Everyone is different and everyone’s body needs different things to function properly; and with time, practice, and patience we can all find our own truly perfect balance!
Thank you Sarah for letting me guest post today!! If you would like to find out more about me, you can find me on:
Blog – www.happywifehealthylife.com
Twitter – @nwhealthylife
Instagram – @nwhealthylife
Facebook – www.facebook.com/happywifehealthylife
Be sure and check out her blog, everyone! She’s a blast to keep up with!
If you would like to be featured or write a guest post, shoot me an email and let’s see if you and Sweet Miles would be a good fit!
Have you popped over to Jana’s blog yet? Have you finished your Christmas shopping? Are you participating in any Christmas-y local 5K’s?