Joshua Roberts has always been proud of maintaining his health. Whether it’s running, going to the gym or doing CrossFit, he describes himself as a “health nut” who loves working out. But keeping up a healthy lifestyle got harder after the birth of his daughter.
A healthy start to adulthood
Joshua has been active since childhood. He ran cross-country and track in high school because he wanted an outlet to stay healthy. “I learned early on that exercising helped me manage stress.”
He continued running through college, both competitively, and for fun, and eventually got into CrossFit. This program allowed other people to be an active part of his workout, which Joshua says encouraged his accountability.
A new addition leads to lifestyle adjustments
Before fatherhood, Joshua liked to wake up early to run before the work day tied things up – he also competed in marathons whenever he could squeeze in the training.
Joshua works at the BlueCross office in Nashville but plays a role in supporting the company’s partnerships with health care providers across the state. So whether he’s working on operational concerns, discussing partnership opportunities, or developing and expanding on agreements, it’s easy for him to get pulled in many directions throughout the day.
Parenthood taught him to be more flexible.
When he and his wife, Mary Katherine, welcomed their baby girl earlier this summer, fitting exercise into his new schedule was a challenge at first. Trying to balance helping with feedings and diaper changes while making sure the dogs were taken care of meant he couldn’t always stay on his normal morning routine.
Joshua says trying these 5 things helped him adjust to his new life
- Maintaining a balanced diet. Joshua started prepping his meals as much as possible to try to stay on the right track with healthy eating. He also cut back on soda and drinks water instead, but also allows himself an occasional cheat meal – his favorite is Italian, specifically pizza.
- Being flexible with his workout schedule each day. He started planning his workouts based on his daughter’s schedule that specific day, alternating between mornings and nights. Because exercise helps keep him going, Joshua knew he needed to find out what worked for his new life and adjust to that.
- Taking advantage of the new gym at work. Joshua says the convenience of the gym at work helps him stay active on busy days. He prefers to listen to classical music during workouts because he finds it to be calming which keeps his stress levels more manageable. He also enjoys walking right outside the office when the weather permits.
- Finding other ways to stay active. When a vigorous work schedule takes him away from his workouts, Joshua started finding other ways to stay active. He started raising his desk up and standing when he felt himself getting tired. Since he spends a lot of time reviewing contracts and data, and on the phone, sometimes he works while standing or walking around the office.
- Trying to be active together as a family. Joshua says having a partner or group that encourages accountability can be helpful in staying active. So now, he and his wife enjoy walking their dogs as a family affair and bringing their daughter along to enjoy the fun from her stroller.
Sharing stories for a healthier city
Joshua finds it exciting to use his skills and his passion for health at work – and in community service.
Through the Young Leaders Council, a leadership training program focused on nonprofit development, he got involved in NashvilleHealth, a community initiative dedicated to improving the health and wellbeing of all Nashvillians. NashvilleHealth brings together a diverse group of individuals and organizations across all industries and now, Joshua serves on its board where he partners with community leaders on the health needs of Nashville.
As an ambassador for its #ImNashvilleHealthy campaign, which harnesses the power of influencers in the city to encourage citizens to live healthier, Joshua shares his experiences about living a healthy lifestyle while balancing a busy career and personal life with the hope of motivating people to be create a healthier future for themselves.
“I think the campaign helps people actively think about how what they do each and every day is affecting their health,” Joshua says.
“Whether it’s grabbing extra fruit or vegetables instead of a bag of chips, going on a walk, or even just a quick walk around the building, our small choices can make a big difference.”
He says his biggest health victory is that he’s still working to maintain it year after year, no matter how his life changes.
“I have a different perspective now that I have a daughter. If you’re trying to live a healthy lifestyle and your children or other family members or friends see that, it can motivate them to do the same. You can set that example.”