My RED January Journey

February 4, 2019

I did it! January is finally over so that means I have now completed RED January - what an amazing way to start 2019 and I’m feeling positive!

I was really keen to take on the challenge and get involved when my manager told me all about RED January a few months ago, as I had never heard of it before. So I checked out the website, had a little read and I signed up straight away.

For myself and for a lot of people January is a really tough month, once Christmas is over and the New Year begins I start to feel quite low and struggle to pick myself back up. I’m not sure if it’s the change of the new year that scares me, not knowing what the year is going to bring and how the years are just passing by far too quickly for my liking which plainly terrifies me.

But RED January gave me a goal, something to focus on and a positive way to kick-start the year by doing something active every single day for the whole month of January.

I can’t lie, it has been difficult, especially with those frosty ice cold mornings that have hit us, I just wanted to stay in the warmth curled up in a blanket. But it really did make all the difference when I got outside and kept active, particularly after Christmas I’d eaten my body weight in food so I think it was for the best I started to get moving a bit more. I’m not one to do a big intense work out but a few stretches, a light jog or a quick walk is sometimes all it takes to make you feel good and feel a bit better about yourself.

When I’m at work I’ve been making sure I go outside on my hour lunch break and go for a long walk, even on those days where the weather doesn’t make me want to step foot outside. I put on my big coat, a cosy scarf and a bobble hat and I’m good to go. Sometimes it’s hard to take a break when you have a lot to do, but I think it’s so important when you’re working at a desk all day to go out and get some fresh air or just have a walk around the office instead of having your eyes glued to the screen all day. I can say I have felt so much more productive when I sit back at my desk and it’s a great chance to clear my head when my mind is in overload. That hour break can make such a difference, to feel recharged, refocused and ready to work with fresh new ideas.

I also try and go for a walk or a jog after work and on weekends when I can a chance to get out the house and have a break from the same four walls. I put my headphones in and play some upbeat music to help de-stress and enjoy the moment, taking notice of all the surroundings and all the positive things around me. Having a dog really helps me to get outside and stay active too, although she’s a bit of a diva and all she wants to do is cuddle up on the sofa as she hates the cold. But going over the park and doing a couple of laps around the field has made me feel really good in myself, although it was a major struggle at first as I felt rather self-conscious about what I looked like if someone saw me as I’m not a confident runner, the more I pushed myself to do it the more happier I felt and was really proud of myself.

The purpose of RED January is to support and promote the positive impact that exercise can have on your happiness and wellbeing. It’s been amazing to see all the journeys of other redders on social media, and it’s made me think ‘if they can do it, I can do it too’! We were all in this together as one big team, some days I felt like I couldn’t do it, I didn’t want to go out and do anything. But as I watched other peoples journeys and saw what they were up to, this was my determination to keep on going, so thank you to the RED community for the encouragement and motivation.

I can definitely say that RED January has really helped me in many ways, my mood has lifted, I feel a lot happier, I have so much more energy and my sleeping pattern has improved too. I intend to stay active, maybe not every single day of the year, but I will carry on going for a walk on my lunch breaks at work and I am determined to go for a jog at least 4 times a week.

January has been a long old month, but I have really enjoyed doing RED January, it’s a new month so let’s make some new goals for February 2019!

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