Creating A Lifestyle Of Wellness With Amanda Wilson
For a lot of women, living a healthy lifestyle can seem almost unattainable — even the phrase can trigger something different in all of us. We’ve all heard it before — life’s a balance — but I know we’ve all been there when we’ve got a full fridge of healthy groceries, but takeout down the street is calling our name.
Enter Amanda Wilson, a health and wellness advocate with a passion to equip her followers toward a healthy lifestyle that’s actually realistic. As a mama to two littles, a foster mom, and a former RN, Amanda can relate to trying to find a wellness rhythm amidst a busy life. Through A. Wellness Note, her monthly resource packed with food prep, workouts, nutrition tips, and monthly goals, Amanda encourages subscribers toward their own health goals, no matter the season they’re in. For those looking for a reset on their routine after a busy summer or needing a little inspiration for how to enter the fall season both healthy and confident, you’ll be inspired and refreshed by this honest conversation with Amanda Wilson.
Aisle 9: What sparked your passion for health + wellness?
Amanda: I grew up with a great foundation and awareness of health, thanks to my mom. I was always involved in sports, but it wasn’t until I became a mom that it clicked — my motivation for pursuing wellness completely changed, sparking the idea of stewardship. I have been given this one body for this one life, and I am its manager and caretaker. I realized that to do the other important roles in my life well, I need to first make sure I’m taking care of my body. If I fuel and move it well, I can remove avoidable barriers [low energy, fatigue, weakness, brain fog, moodiness] that make living out those roles more difficult than needed. I realized that making stewardship my “why” for pursuing health would lead it to become a lifestyle.
A9: You’re a wife, mama to two, foster mom, and the creator of A. Wellness Note — how do you balance it all while maintaining your own personal wellness?
AW: I definitely want to lay it out that I do not have it all figured out when it comes to balancing it well at all times. However, I’ve given myself permission to be honest with my capacity, so I set boundaries and honor intentional time with family. For now, I’m okay with “what is done is done,” because I know there will be another season of life where I can put more time into making A. Wellness Note even better. Creating daily rhythms within my home has helped immensely. As far as maintaining my own personal wellness, I have transitioned through the years to look at real food and movement as basic needs and not trendy health “extras.” So, I work my day and schedule around those basic needs.
A9: Tell us a little bit about A. Wellness Note…
AW: The idea was born from the realization that so many people are overwhelmed with the pursuit of wellness and all the opinions, diets, and methods that come along with it. I wanted to provide a resource with practical steps + tips to make wellness more of a lifestyle and help people make the best decisions in their own wellness journey. My goal is to equip others in a realistic way instead of just adding to their to-do list.
A9: Getting kids to eat healthy can be a trick — how do you encourage healthy choices from an early age with your littles?
AW: Exposure, options, and encouragement! My kids are not perfect eaters, but that doesn’t mean you don’t keep trying. From the beginning, I exposed them to real foods. As they got older, I made sure to give them options on their plate, knowing that they would eat at least one of them. I always encourage [and mostly require] a “try bite” of everything. I try to explain how food does something to our bodies – it makes us strong, gives us energy, grows our bones, makes our brains ready to learn, etc. I don’t make a big deal about it, but I want them to grow up knowing that food does fuel us.
A9: For a lot of women, living a healthy lifestyle can seem almost unattainable. What’s the first tip you’d give to someone wanting to take charge of her wellness journey or simply reset after a busy season?
AW: Take it one meal at a time. Start out with just one fueling, “real food” meal a day. Also, move your body! Movement doesn’t have to have a standard — it can be going on a walk, chasing your kids around, or doing squats with your baby. We can get overwhelmed with the stigma that working out has to be in a gym, for a certain length of time, doing specific moves. Just start simple: I will fuel my body well at breakfast and go on a walk today. As for mindset, don’t look at this as a diet with a deadline but a permanent change — a lifestyle. Just start somewhere and keep adding to it.
A9: What are some tips for maintaining a healthy life on a budget?
AW: I wasn’t always a member of a gym! You don’t have to be a part of a gym to fit in movement. Most workouts that I post on Instagram over at #awilsonworkout can be done at home. [That’s how I worked out during the baby years!] When it comes to eating healthy on a budget…
01 | Assess what you have on hand first before making your grocery list. [You can download my meal assessment tool to help with that.]
02 | Shop at Aldi if you have one!
03 | Keep ingredients simple. [If you scroll through my feed, you’ll find that almost everything I eat is very simple and not involved. It trains your taste buds to love real food and also helps the budget.]
A9: The craziness of back-to-school season is upon us – what tips would you give to other mothers around maintaining health + wellness for both yourself and your kiddos in such a busy season?
AW: Look at your new schedule for the year and assess how you it’s going to change. Make a list of non-negotiables in your schedule, things that are fun extras, and things you need to say “no” to. Be honest and ask yourself, “What does wellness look like for me?” It may be a shift in workout times or food prep. You can’t expect your healthy routine to magically adapt to a new schedule if you don’t put in the effort. It may require some shifting, but that doesn’t mean wellness is thrown out the window.