I Live In Ohio, Make $105,000 A Year, And Spent $926.27 On My Wellness Routine This Week

Welcome to Refinery29’s Feel Good Diaries, where we chronicle the physical and mental wellness routines of women today, their costs, and whether or not these self-care rituals actually make you feel good. Have your own Feel Good Diary to submit? You can do so here!
Today: A woman who believes in sticking to a diet of mostly whole, minimally processed, organic foods. Her fitness choices are driven by a competitive nature and a long-term goal of competing in road cycling races.
Age: 31
Central Ohio
Occupation: Designer
Salary: $105,000
Day One
7:30 a.m. — My boyfriend brings me breakfast in bed: Two eggs over easy and espresso with steamed almond milk. He normally gets up before me, and later I get up to drop off the dog at daycare before heading to work. Extra sleep and time with my pup in the morning always get me off to a good start!
12:10 p.m. — I grab Indian food from my work cafeteria, along with an almond latte. I have been experimenting with the high fat, low carb keto diet since the new year, but after 30 days I have come to the conclusion that my body needs carbs with the amount of high intensity workouts that I do. My power output was way down on the diet, and I felt exhausted after what was a normal class. So, I have been slowly reintroducing carbs. I liked the way keto made me feel, but I also like to win at exercise!
6:30 p.m. — I recently joined 3 Minute Fitness, a group fitness class in my area. I was previously a committed OrangeTheory member, but after three years there, the workouts were feeling stale and my body wasn't responding like it used to. 3MF involves 10 stations, and you spend three minutes at each station, with a warm up and cool down. I really like it so far, and I’m sore for days afterwards. Plus, I got a founding member unlimited monthly rate, which is a steal at $113 per month. Oh, the perks of living in Ohio! I went to the class right after work and then headed home for puppy playtime.
Daily total: $113
Day Two
7:30 a.m. — My boyfriend and I often grab breakfast on the fly, but today I made us a healthy breakfast and coffee with ingredients we already had. We sat down at the table to eat while pup ate his pumpkin and sausage breakfast. I added Hope Green Chile Guacamole to our eggs, which is about $5 for a package. I usually I make my own, but this is delicious. It’s a very calming start to my day. I also make a flask of Earl Grey tea to take to work with a homemade sugar-free cookie.
5:45 p.m. — I recently bought a pack of 30 CycleBar classes. They were $300 as a Black Friday deal. I have been loving everything about the class. I tried a few races last year including a triathlon and a duathlon, but quickly realized the only part I enjoyed was cycling. So this summer, I plan to try some Category 5 road races. CycleBar is awesome because it has the music and candles like SoulCycle, but with stats and a leaderboard like Peloton. There’s also a weighted bar for the arms section. It pushes all my competitive buttons, especially with mini-races during the class. I also love the music themes they incorporate — tonight was a music-video ride. They also have essential oil-infused, icy-cold towels they give you at the end. I leave feeling so refreshed and accomplished.
8:30 p.m. — Although I love to cook, we try to have nice dinners out a few times a week. Ohio is so affordable and we love to take advantage of that. We go to our local secret gem, sit at the bar — the service is so good when you do that, and they know us because we go all the time — and order low carb options that still feel like a treat. Today: Wings, steak, and salad, plus bourbon and ginger. I don't think I could ever cut out alcohol completely, although I have recently cut down on beer. We leave satisfied, but not bloated. The bill comes to $55.
Daily Total: $360
Day Three
9:30 a.m. — It’s time for 3MF and a smoothie. This time I grab a friend to come with me — I have a group of "fit friends" and I love to arrange group workouts because it's so motivating and makes it way more fun. I'm really sore from the last few days, but it feels good to work through that. I'm loosened up by the end. Afterwards we grab a smoothie from the Fuel Bar in the studio. The $7 Sunshine Greens is my favorite. It includes kale, spinach, vanilla protein, and mango.
1 p.m. — I meet a friend who is moving back to New York City after four years in Ohio. I get chai, and a breakfast egg pastry from a boutique cafe in my area. This totals up to $8.60. Catching up with friends as an important part of my mental health routine.
8:30 p.m. — I grab dinner with my boyfriend at a local restaurant for $40. We are feeling like having a cheat day, so we share a veggie quesadilla to start, then each get a sandwich — veggie for him and chicken for me. Plus, we share sweet potato fries. I also indulge in a few glasses of wine. Delicious and worth it. I can't finish the fries, so I take them home for snacking later. Balance is key.
Daily Total: $55.60
Day Four
9:15 a.m. – CycleBar’s musical theme this morning is Elton John bops, and I love it. I work really hard and come in third on the leaderboard. I finish with a beet-red face. Then, I quickly shower and grab brunch with the instructor at another local spot. I have prosciutto and eggs on rosemary bread with arugula salad, and coffee, coming to $17. The instructor is a new friend, and I could talk to her for hours because we have so much in common. I leave feeling relaxed and ready to take on afternoon chores.
6:30 p.m. — It’s time for a Super Bowl party. I take homemade snacks including sugar-free chocolate peanut butter cups and cheesy sausage pastry bites, which I already have the supplies to make. Ingredients total up to about $20. There's beer everywhere at the party, but I stick to Prosecco!
Daily Total: $37
Day Five
11:55 a.m. — I skipped breakfast today, because the indulgent party snacks from last night did not sit well with my stomach. By lunch, I'm ravenous and I get a shrimp Cobb salad with bacon, avocado, blue cheese, and egg. Plus, a latte! Good value at $8.75, plus it’s delicious.
7 p.m. — After a hectic Monday, I take a local stretch and meditation yoga class with my boyfriend for $10. I don't love that there’s no music, but he thinks silence is golden. I like doing classes like this together as often as we can. Plus, I could use at least one class a week where I don't leave exhausted and panting for air. We are both much more chilled out afterwards, and even hit the steam room at the yoga studio afterwards an extra dose of relaxation.
Daily Total: $18.75
Day Six
6 p.m. – Time for a beauty splurge. I notice the Beauty Brands store near where I got to CycleBar is having a closing sale and I have time to kill before an exercise class. Everything is at least 50 percent off, so I go a little wild. I get new, wider curling tongs, a bunch of Origins WEIL skincare, a hair mask from Living Proof, and a liter of shampoo from Amika. With the sale, this all totals up to $114.01. Although it's a splurge, I've really limited myself at Sephora recently, and hopefully this will save me money later on.
7 p.m. — My favorite CycleBar instructor hosts a Kesha-themed class. I'm feeling ready to burn. I work really hard, come in second place overall, and get my highest average watts. Nothing beats that feeling!
8 p.m. — I hit Whole Foods to get some veggies for dinner, but the splurge continues. I end up buying a vegan cake for my friend's birthday dinner tomorrow. I also grab fancy bacon-infused dark chocolate for my boyfriend, and a Hawaiian salt scrub for me. Next aisle. I pick up blue cheese olives, kale, zucchini, and cauliflower. This all comes out to $70.16. I head home to make zoodles with leftover sliced steak for dinner. The blue cheese olives go in our gin martinis, which we drink while watching the State of the Union address.
Daily Total: $202.92
Day Seven
6 a.m. — I run into some colleagues at my 3MF class, which is always fun when you're wearing no makeup and just woke up. I have a red face like a tomato by the end, and my legs are burning. We do multiple rounds of squats and lunges, moving with resistance bands around our thighs. But I'm done in 45 minutes, which means I'm home by 7 a.m. and get to make breakfast. I have Nutzo peanut butter on Dave's killer bread with sliced banana, and a homemade cappuccino. I eat with my boyfriend and pup in bed. I make a firm note in my mind that 6 a.m. classes are the way to go. It’s so much better than dragging yourself to an evening class after a long day at work.
12:10 p.m. — Lunch is a burrito from the cafe at work. I opt for just chicken and cauliflower with tomato salsa on the burrito for $6.50. It's really filling, and I know I would have been in a coma by 3 p.m. if I’d added the sour cream, cheese, rice, and beans that were available.
6:30 p.m. — I planned a semi-surprise birthday dinner for a friend. She’s vegan, so I bring the vegan cake from Whole Foods, which was $20. I decorate it with pictures of her five dogs, and she loves it. It's happy hour until 7 p.m. at the Mexican restaurant we’re at, so we drink a bit too much. I order veggie fajitas. It's a loud group, and we laugh a lot so I'm happy and tipsy by the time I get home. The meal with drinks comes to $54. I put on an Origins sheet face mask from my beauty splurge earlier in the week, and feel so relaxed that I consider going back for more tomorrow. I find it therapeutic to talk to a range of people, including friends from outside of work, so I can zone out. These friends always have really good insights into any family issues I’m going through. We joke sometimes that me talking to them is my free therapy.
Daily Total: $139
Weekly Total: $926.27
Reflection: Working out affects everything I do in a positive way. It’s good for my mind, my body, I get to eat more, and I feel more alert. It also is great for my back, which with scoliosis has a tendency to hurt a lot. But the stronger I am, the less often my back hurts. The most negative thing I do is drink alcohol regularly, but I really enjoy the social aspect of it, which is important to me. I am realizing that I need to recognize alcohol as part of my calories for the day, and not just as a free-for-all. Since I have been doing this, I have made significantly better choices.
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