This past year, there’s been a silent assailant at work against our health and well-being. The COVID-19 virus has threatened to make us either mildly or seriously ill. The risk of infection has threatened the livelihoods of many and has tabled all group activities, including fitness, too. It has placed a distance between us, our family, friends, and colleagues, forcing us to connect in new ways that haven’t been intuitive for some. The isolation, cabin fever, and lack of activity have caused us to feel anxious, afraid, sad, and concerned – fortunately, not all at once, but it has taken its toll.

But wherever there is darkness, there is always light. I’ve been amazed by the resilience and determination of so many people in my life. I’m in awe of those who have taken the opportunity that this time at home has offered to shed pounds, tone muscles, and train minds. I have personally been encouraged by my regular “run girls”: Jill, Miranda and Robyn who have worked hard to stay healthy so we could still run together, socially distant, being transparent whenever potential exposure has occurred. My mind has been calmed by the optional group meditation we started at work using the Calm app, by the ritual of online church and prayer groups, and through Zoom yoga practice with my long-time yogi Melanie. All of these activities and the people leading them had to morph and change to continue inside this pandemic and I am blessed that they did.

I am also blessed by our annual ConvergenceCoaching® Holiday Exercise Streak (HES). This annual ritual was a healthy beacon of light for many this year, as well. Since 2016, we have been hosting a free opportunity for people to come together to exercise the equivalent of 1-mile of running every day from Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day. This year, 199 of our friends signed up to participate and a record-shattering 158 (79%) completed the streak to earn their HES shirt. Throughout, people posted pictures, shared heroic stories of their efforts to keep their streak alive and encouraged each other through comments and likes on our Facebook page. On Twitter, some using the hashtag #cpaswhohealth joined along. As I write this, some of us are still streaking (this is day 75) and posting words of encouragement to keep each other going strong.

Every day, pandemic or not, we each face a choice to:

I wage a daily inner battle to make the healthy choices listed here. It sure helps to have a community of friends and colleagues who are committed to mental, physical, spiritual, and emotional health. People who will hold me accountable for practicing a healthy mindset and activities. Those with whom I can share my goals, blessings, fears, and doubts and those who also will share theirs with me. You are a part of the community that keeps me healthy and I am grateful. That’s why I want to share something BIG that I plan to do. In 2021, I am going to train for and run a 50K or 31-mile race. When I complete it this fall, I’ll be an ultra-marathoner.

Our health is our true wealth and I’m going to keep investing in mine. What are you doing to invest in your health in 2021? What changes will you make? What new habits will you form? What big breakthrough will you commit to?

We hope you’ll share them with us, in blog comments, in social media or privately as well. We want to encourage you, pray for you, and cheer you on, too. Go get it!