Several years ago I was a workaholic. I spent most of my day at my job or commuting to and from my job as managing editor of a large website. And I ignored most of the other parts of my life. I knew all of the numbers associated with our page views and unique visitors, but I knew very little about my own numbers. You have to know your numbers. Let me explain.

I loved my job. It was fast-paced and exciting. I met many insanely talented people and I grew as a person. We were building something I believed in, but I paid little attention to my health. I worked late and then sat in Los Angeles traffic for at least an hour to get home. When I finally got home I was too tired to cook or even think about food shopping. So I went out to eat frequently and then went to bed on a full stomach. In the morning I had several cups of coffee, then showered and started the day. I bought a sandwich for lunch, ate it in a hurry at my desk, and started putting on weight slowly year after year. This went on for some time. Fortunately, I was rarely sick, but because of that I never went to the doctor.

Then one day I cut my finger on a broken glass. It was a Sunday. I needed stitches and my only option was the emergency room. As I sat there for hours waiting my turn — as I was not a real emergency compared to the others who were there — I looked around and thought about how lucky I was to be there for something so minor. I ended up with a few stitches and was told I could go to Urgent Care to get them removed in a week. That’s when I discovered I had developed high blood pressure. If I had been getting regular checkups I would have seen this happening gradually. It was surprising to me, and I hated that I had to start taking medicine.

That’s when I realized how it important it is to know your numbers.

Especially as we get older, things start to deteriorate. We’re not the young, vibrant figures of our youth. You should know your blood pressure range, your weight, your cholesterol, your blood sugar, your triglycerides, your BMI, your kidney and liver and thyroid numbers and all of the other numbers that make up our bodies. It’s a simple blood test.

The good thing that came out of this experience was that I started going to the doctor for regular exams. We talked at length about nutrition and a healthy lifestyle. I wanted to start going to the gym, but I wanted to get a stress test first to make sure I got the go-ahead by a professional.

I started paying more attention to my life and less time at work. While this was good for me as a person, it was not good for my corporate career. I wasn’t performing as expected. I was still getting my work done, but I was not volunteering for every assignment that came up. I was leaving the office earlier and taking advantage of work-from-home time. My manager wasn’t particularly happy about this, but I was happier than I had been in a while. I made time for friends and relationships. I had dinner earlier in the evening so I had time to digest. I made friends with an Italian chef who taught me about eating Mediterranean style and savoring a meal over multiple courses.

To make a long story short: I eventually left my crazy wonderful job and moved back to the east coast to start my own business and this blog.

All of this led me to my new lifestyle that I want to share with you on the pages of this website.

Do you know your numbers?