Heathy living. What’s that? We juggle. We endlessly chauffer. We help with homework and realize that math is freaking hard. Way harder than we remember. We cook quick meals or grab takeout when we have to. We sacrifice. We cut corners. We have so much laundry that it needs to fold its own damn self. Some of us just drove kids to college and dropped them off, then we cried all the way home. Then they came home with their mountains of laundry and we realized it wasn’t so bad when they were gone. Sound familiar? We’re all living the same lives, or some version thereof. Where does healthy living fit in? We women (and quite often men, too) (but mostly women, let’s be honest) have one thing in common: we put ourselves waaaay back at the bottom of the line of things we need to pay attention to.
That’s why I love Carla Birnberg, my friend who describes herself as “unapologetically myself” and her book (co-written with Roni Noone) What You Can When You Can, which is all about healthy living, on your terms.
This “healthy living” business—what is that and why is it so doggone elusive? It’s really a pretty simple concept, and one that Carla and Roni do a great job of breaking down into one simple concept: Progress trumps perfection. That’s it. Doing what you can, when you can. Having a bad day, week, or month? No problem. Get back on the bandwagon when you can, and it’s all good. It’s a terrific read and one that might even find its way to a special spot on your nightstand, for reminders from time to time. It’ll definitely be something you share with your friends who need inspiration along the way as much as you do. It’s most definitely not another diet book making promises we all know aren’t going to happen and it’s definitely not your guide to losing that last 10 pounds. It’s so much better.
WYCYC is about infinitely more than eating right and trying to squeeze in some fitness. It’s about being real and living your life in a way that not only makes sense, it’s filled with common sense advice that makes that infinitely do-able. Healthy living is common sense. Maybe it’s taking time for six minutes of planking in the middle of a messy living room, maybe it’s tempting your kids with a game of Uno in order to get them away from their devices. Maybe it’s walking to the grocery store and convincing your kid to scooter along with you instead of driving those 20 blocks.
What You Can When You Can is a lifestyle. It’s a movement. It’s about doing the best you can and letting that be enough. Healthy living doesn’t have to be complicated. If you’re trying your best to live a healthier life, this is a book you should read and a movement, and a lifestyle, you need to embrace.
And of course, you need to get to know Carla, because she’s all kinds of awesome.
Sold? I am not usually in the habit of giving bad advice. And I’m an oldest child, which means that I am a professional when it comes to bossing people around. This is advice you’ll be happy you heeded. So, here’s what you do:
Buy the book here:
Use Twitter? Find and follow the #wycwyc stream. Use the #wycwyc hashtag to share your own thoughts or just follow along for some inspiration.
Carla and Roni launched a podcast with the launch of What You Can When You Can. The last episode of their podcast was recorded in November of 2016, but there’s plenty of great material there to keep you company, and keep you inspired, on a morning walk or a session on the treadmill. You can find the podcast here.
Find Carla (she’s ridiculously adorable, isn’t she?)
Check out her website and follow her blog. You’ll find it a great source of a combination of fitness advice, inspiration, and the bonus is that you’ll make a new friend along the way—Carla is the very best kind of friend to have. Chances are good you’ll also get to know some of the members of Carla’s community of friends, who are pretty awesome themselves.
There you have it. This week’s installment of people you should know. A woman who will change your life, in the very best of ways. And someone I’m so happy to call “friend.” If you get nothing else out of this, remember: Progress trumps perfection. Every damn day.
I would be remiss not to also add that Carla is working on yet another book, this being a series about parenting, called The Imperfect Person’s Guides. She’s also a writer, regularly developing content for brands and also working as an influencer in the world of fitness, health, and wellness, with and for brands with products that she genuinely loves.
Other Resources on this Topic: