Finding Health and Balance in My 31st Year!

Finding Health and Balance in My 31st Year!

Today is my 31st birthday! And no, this isn’t an April Fool’s joke, I really...

Finding Health and Balance in my 31st Year

Today is my 31st birthday! And no, this isn’t an April Fool’s joke, I really was born on April 1st!

Instead of sharing a recipe on my birthday, I figured I’d “take the day off” and share with all of you my goals for this next year of my life.

My 30th year was certainly amazing. I got pregnant, wrote my next cookbook (coming out May 1!), traveled to new, beautiful places like Hawaii and Bermuda, and had a baby!

Needless to say, there’s a lot of pressure on my 31st year thanks to my 30th, but I can’t wait to see what’s to come.

Now that I am a mother, there has been a huge shift in my priorities, of course. Before the baby, I had (extra) time to spend on myself, whether that was waking up early for a morning workout or getting a pedicure “just because” (like, not because you desperately need one.)

losing health and balance

I’ve found it very difficult to do what I do best: eat well and exercise, all within a healthy balance.

Luca’s 5th month (he turned 6 months last weekend!) crushed us. He went through a major sleep regression and would stay awake during the day for 3 to sometime 6 hours at a time (which was a shock, because he always would get tired around 1-1.5 hours). At night, he’d wake up wailing with his eyes closed for no apparent reason multiple times a night. Luckily, with a little patting, some shushing, and the occasional pick-up and cradle, he’d go back down in a few minutes.

And if you know anything about a healthy lifestyle, sleep is probably the #1 thing you can work on to improve your overall wellness. So, when that’s the #1 thing that’s failing, it sets the whole system off balance. I started eating more unhealthfully (I always eat healthy foods, I just eat too many of them), had little energy for exercise, and stopped taking care of myself as well as I had been.

Not to mention, we hired a nanny and went back to work full-time, so my priorities became my two babies: Luca and Inspiralized.

I keep telling myself that adjusting to life as a first-time mother won’t happen overnight and to be kinder on myself. It’s okay that you haven’t worked out in a week, it’s okay that you’re eating more to comfort yourself, it’s just okay. I’ve never practiced kindness as consistently as I have now, as a mother and let me tell you: it’s refreshing!

Finding Health and Balance in my 31st Year

finding health and balance, again

But alas, the baby is 6 months old, I’m officially 31 and I want to find health and balance this year as a mother. I know it’s possible, and I think the key is finding a routine (which is hard, because Luca isn’t on a schedule!) By a routine, I mean things like

  • meal-prepping for the week: by having healthy lunches and dinners prepped, you’re less likely to order-out, make unhealthy choices, or snack because you’re hungry while cooking.
  • making exercise a priority at the same time each time: I’m better with mornings, and I need to accept that my life isn’t the same anymore and I can’t workout at 6am (for many reasons – like full breasts due to nursing and new mom exhaustion.) I always feel ‘guilty’ exercising during typical business hours, but that’s silly because I don’t work a typical job and part of my ‘job’ is to promote health and wellness!
  • going to bed earlier: like many, I’m guilty of going to bed later than I should, because I do time-wasting activities like watch trashy TV and scroll through Instagram. I’m going to make a valiant effort to be more relaxed at night time and turn the lights off earlier, let my brain shut down, and get rest earlier to make up for the earlier mornings and night-time wakeups.
  • making time for self-care and relaxation: you all know (if you follow me on Instagram) that I’m currently dealing with Bell’s Palsy, a condition that renders your face half paralyzed. my acupuncturist (and MD!) believes this to be stress-induced and that I drained my body of its energy supplies and it resulted in this viral flare up that surfaced as Bell’s Palsy. my routine is now going to include some relaxation everyday, which I’ve already time blocked in my calendar for each day (otherwise I’ll never remember to make the time!) more on this to come.

All of this, I believe, will help me find health and balance in my 31st year. I want to feel my best so I can be the best mother, wife, friend, daughter, and entrepreneur I can be!

Life is short, and I want to enjoy every moment of it and to do that, I need to find that healthy balance once again. Thanks for following along in my journey, as always – and thank you for all the birthday wishes, they mean so much to me!


with love, Ali

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  • Hope you have a wonderful birthday today! Relax, take care of yourself, and enjoy!
  • Happy birthday!
  • Happy happy birthday, Ali! You are doing such a great job as a mom and I love your new goals. They sound realistic and balanced. Sending you a big birthday hug! xoxo
  • Wishing you a very happy birthday and keeping you in my prayers
  • Happy Birthday Ali! Wishing you a wonderful day & may you find the peace &"balance" that you want to achieve.
  • Wishing you a very happy birthday, Ali.
  • HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY ALI!!!!! Wonderful post about the best gift we can give ourselves!
  • Happy Birthday, April 1st is our 40th Anniversary too, we got married on April 1st, 1978 in Lake Tahoe, this way we won't ever forget our Anniversary.
  • Happy Birthday! My son is just a few weeks behind Luca and I know what your going through. He has slept through the night once about a month ago and hasn’t done it since. Going to bed early is a priority for me because I know I have no control over my night sometimes he will wake up once sometimes he will wake up every hour. I’m thankfully not back to work yet but I still meal prep on the weekends because getting lunches and dinners organized can be hard as we try to get out of the house every day to mommy and baby classes. I’m in Canada so here it’s fairly standard for women to take a year off or the parents combined to take a year. Be patient with your inspiralized baby this year I am sure it’s hard to mange both. I’m trying to take this time and find my healthy groove back while trying to figure out motherhood. Good luck on your journey there are tons of us right behind you cheering you on!
  • Dont be too hard on yourself . Your body needs time to adjust and settle down after a massive hormone change . Maybe work out twice a week and take luca out for a brisk walk in the park on the other days.. Do you both good in the fresh air instead of a sweaty gym . Dont forget your body is working hard to feed luca too. 12 months is amore realistic target.
  • Happy birthday! You continue to be an inspiration through all your ups and downs and new things in life. Love reading about balance and being kinder to ourselves. Great post!
  • Ali, I have been a HUGE fan of your cookbooks, Inspiralizer, and blog posts for awhile now. As a mom of 2 and someone trying to find the same balance you talk about in this post, I find you more inspiring than ever right now. I know the struggle you’re describing and I wish you peace and success as you navigate to find this balance. If anyone can do it well, and inspire people at the same time, it is you! Thank you for your healthy inspiralized recipes and for sharing your journey with us.
  • Ali, I see you as incredibly balanced and motivated already. Not perfect (because that’s unattainable, but motivated and on-track). If you can embrace life as it comes vs how we “plan” for it, you’re already ahead of the game! Your sharing so honestly - the great and the hard things - are such an inspiration to me (a 65 year-old!) Have a beautiful 31st Birthday and happy “NEW” year❣️
  • Happy belated birthday, Ali! Xoxoxo
  • Hey Birthday buddy! As a working Mom of 2, I know so well everything has a season and reason. I personally didn't get much exercise accomplished in either of the 2 years I spent nursing. If you're tracking the time on app, calculate how many hours a week you spend in a chair with a baby (or with a pump like myself sometimes) it is like adding a part-time job to your life! I averaged 20 hours a week. Just my 2 cents, I promise everything will come and go. Which is to me the most tender part of parenting that everything is just so fleeting, but it is also where I take solace when things aren't going as well as I hoped.
  • Happy Birthday. Seems to me that when babies are 6 months old they begin to test their/your sleeping habits. hmmm. Been there five times! Nancy Zieman of sewing fame on TV/Internet/Videos came down with Bells Palsey when she was three years old and led a completely successful life. You will get past this in your own way. Take care and enjoy your little baby as they grow up so fast.
  • It is a crazy transition to adjust to motherhood when you are used to setting your own schedule. It takes awhile to find the balance between family, work, couple time, and all the rest. You’ll get there in time, just be patient with yourself and your family. This stage of your baby’s life goes so quickly, so I hope you can enjoy it as much as possible.
  • Very Interesting and wonderful post, Thank you so much for this great article with us keep sharing.
  • Happy Birthday, and thank you for such interesting post