I feel like this would have been a good article to write back when I started my blog 3 years ago, but my 10 loves in 2018 would’ve been a little different than what they are today. So, here I am, 3 years in with a list of the 10 things I love, and honestly wouldn’t want to live without.
Defining what you love or enjoy and vice versa is a great way to get to know yourself and understand who / what you are…similar to defining your values, like I did in my previous post (check it out here).
Taking the time to sit down and think about what I love and value within my life was a fun activity, it was great to pause for a second and reflect on 10 things that I truly love and am passionate about.
Fitness has been a large influence on my life as you know. I’ve chosen my career path to be directly in the fitness world, as it’s something that I’ve become increasingly more passionate about since high school. The fitness and health realm is great for so many reasons. It’s helped me over the years and I’ve had the opportunity to watch those I work with gain the benefits of it as well.
Fitness offers a large amount of variety, having something that anyone can do and find enjoyment in. There are so many different styles and techniques to training like powerlifting, bodybuilding, CrossFit, Olympic weightlifting, martial arts, HIIT training, group classes, whatever it may be, there are so many options to pick from and each of us will have the one that we enjoy the most.
I’ve tried just about everything at this point. A little bit of powerlifting, Oly, and CrossFit, as well as some group classes. But I always find myself falling back to the bodybuilding style. It’s what I fell in love with first and still brings me the most joy.
Aside from my love for it, I truly enjoy watching the transformation my clients go through. And I’m not just talking about the physical transformation, but the mental / mindset change. It’s amazing seeing them go from Point A – where they don’t believe in or trust themselves and their capabilities… to Point B – where their mindset starts to shift, they believe in themselves, they trust that they can make healthy choices, they know they’re capable of far more than they’ve allowed themselves to believe previously. They become more positive and motivated.
Looking to find your love for fitness? Join me in a 1:1 personal training session OR join a community like Street Parking — I absolutely love SP, not just for the fitness, but the amazing people and family that it is.
I’m not really sure where the donut love came from, but it’s a thing and it has been for a few years now. I definitely know the donut interest didn’t begin until I moved to NH. Compared to my hometown, or Western Mass as a whole there wasn’t a huge variety of donut shops except for Dunkin Donuts and the Donut Man…neither great options in my opinion. Seacoast New Hampshire and Maine both have an awesome variety of donut shops…between HiFi, The Holy Donut, York’s Mini Donuts, Donut Love, Love Birds, Northwood Bakery (my favorite — the BEST French Crullers), I had plenty of places to choose from.
The Seacoast area was also great for their burger options. Burgers have always been a favorite of mine, but they became an even bigger love when I moved to New Hampshire, where there are SO many good, locally owned restaurants with amazing burgers. We had Lexie’s Burgers, the GOAT, Hop + Grind (my fav!), BRGR Bar, and Nosh, and so many more.
Friends and I joke that I should start a travel blog on the donut shops and burger joints that I check out when I’m in new cities…it’s not a bad idea.
3. The Ocean
I grew up about 4 hours away from the beach in small town Peru, MA. My family didn’t do many beach vacations…actually none that I can remember. When I moved to NH for college, I was about 20 minutes away from the coast and I fell in love.
It wasn’t until later in my college career that the ocean became a big factor for me and I’d go regularly to walk along the waters edge. I knew that I wouldn’t be able to live too far from the ocean at that point.
When things are good or things are bad, I find myself driving out to the water, watching the waves, and listening to the calmness that surrounds me. Being there brings a peace that I can’t seem to find elsewhere. It’s always a beautiful reminder that to me that I’m so small and there are far bigger things in this world than myself. The changes between calm and stormy are a reminder that there will be ups and downs in life, it’s a balance. The waves washing up on shore and then pulling back out into the deep are a reminder that things will come and go and to just roll with the tide.
I adopted Millie in June 2015 and it has been an adventure. What started as a small, very shy kitten has now turned into a furball that has a quite a personality. The (not so) little fluff ball just turned 5 in December.
She’s a lover of treats and sleeping in boxes, a conqueror of plastic bags, and a professional at stealing my water. She talks to me in her language…and I try to understand. She greets me every morning, comes running when I come home from work, cuddles when I’m reading on the couch, takes naps with me on the rare occasion, and is always inspecting packages and bowls of food before I get to enjoy them.
Life would definitely be less interesting without Millie by my side. I got really lucky with this one…
I can thank my Mama for my love of books. She made it a habit to read to me every night before bed during early childhood and helped me find books that I enjoyed as I got older. She set an example by reading as an activity to do when we had nothing else to do. It’s such a calming activity and the world kind of falls away when you immerse yourself in a good story.
I was the kid in class that when I finished my work, I would sit there and read. I read every night before going to bed. I bring books with me pretty much everywhere I go. And I’m not too picky about what I read. Although I do enjoy Crime/Mystery the most. Over the past few years, I’ve found myself more into educational book, specifically psychology and personal growth / mindset books. These books have helped greatly when it comes to myself and personal life, as well as my coaching abilities.
I’ve read the most from David Baldacci and Ellen Hopkins for “free” reading. The psych / mindset books, the 3 that I highly recommend are:
- Mindset – Carol Dweck
- 7 Habits of Highly Effective People – Dale Carnegie
- Solve for Happy – Mo Gawdat
6. Quiet Mornings
Specifically mornings with a hot cup of coffee, a good book, and Millie at my side.
I love the schedule that I’ve created here in Wilmington. I’m up at 4/4:30am and out the door within 30 minutes of waking, BUT I absolutely love having slow mornings too. The first 2 months of living in a new area and having no commitments in the morning was great. I’d wake up early, brew some coffee and sit down with a book or journal for an hour. Curling up in the corner of the couch, Millie by my side, and losing myself in a story. Now those days are reserved for Sundays, and I look forward to them every time.
There’s just something so peaceful about being up before the sun and most people. Everything’s quiet, there’s no rush, no expectations, just time to enjoy being with myself and watching the world around me wake up.
This one is kind of new for me. Growing up, my family didn’t travel too much outside of New England, other than Disney World twice.
In 2018, I took my 1st big solo trip out to Seattle, Washington to visit a friend… I had never flown by myself or ever been out on the West Coast, so this was a big one!
Pre-pandemic, I had made a promise to myself that I would travel to new places at least 2x a year. I’ve held true to that promise for the last 2 years.
- 2019 — Norfolk, VA + Asheville, NC + Quebec, Canada
- 2020 — Columbus / Cleveland, OH + Wilmington, NC + Charleston, SC
With the pandemic still a thing, I’m not planning any trips that require flying. So I’ve looked at what’s within a 10 hour driving radius of Wilmington. I’ve decided on Savannah, Georgia for my birthday in March and Nashville, Tennessee later in the year.
Every trip I’ve gone on, I’ve gone by myself. People always look at me weird when I tell them I’m going by myself, but I love traveling alone. I get to do what I want, when I want, and not have to worry about keeping track of anyone else. I can check out all the burger and donut shops that I want. It’s fun seeing the history of the cities, meeting new people, and just being in the present moment.
I LOVE wearing hoodies. You probably think I’m weird for this one, but I don’t care. I’m pretty picky about my hoodies as the hood needs to be perfect. If it’s too small or is weirdly shaped, I’ll never wear the sweatshirt. I don’t know why this is a thing for me, but it is. It’s just such an awesome feeling coming home at the end of the day, and throwing on my favorite hoodie and relaxing.
Creation comes in many forms. The forms of creating that I truly enjoy are workouts, recipes, writing, crocheting, and sewing. There’s pieces of each that I find happiness with. I love seeing something from the very beginning and working through it until it’s finished.
Writing workouts for myself and others is awesome because it’s a challenge for myself and those who use my workouts. I’ve recently found a love for cooking and pairing different things together to switch it up from the boring “bodybuilding” diet. Crochet and sewing are semi-new as I started a few years ago. I like the challenge, they’re frustrating at times when something isn’t laying the way it should or you messed up an entire row of stitches and have to go back. But it’s all a learning experience…about the activity but also yourself.
10. Coffee Shops
If you know me, you know I spend a lot of time at coffee shops when I’m not at the gym or coaching. I love coffee shops. I love exploring different ones, feeling the vibe / environment and spending the day with a good cup of coffee and getting some work done. Another great thing about coffee shops is the people watching (maybe that’s what I truly love in this situation)… If you know me, you know I’m a wallflower and absolutely love to observe people and situations. It’s the simple things I guess. And to me coffee is a very simple thing.
Well, that’s 10 things that I love!
What are 10 things you love and wouldn’t want to live without?