BE Savvy

A Good Run and No Deprivation: A BE 100s CEO’s Recipe for Wellness

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iStock_000076227843_MediumMonica Walker is a founding partner of Holland Capital Management, an uber-successful, multimillion-dollar firm that ranked No. 6 on the BE 100s Asset Managers list and earned top rank as Black Enterprise’s Financial Services Company of the Year in 2014. The company manages a $4.46 billion portfolio, and its leading executive is one of few women of color holding the reigns at a major financial services institution. As CEO, Walker oversees the overall business and financial operations of the firm. How does she keep it all together beyond applying her more than 20 years of business savvy to the industry?

[Related: Busy Bosses: 5 Everyday Ways to Relieve Stress]

BlackEnterprise.com caught up with her to talk the main ingredients to a great recipe for good health.

BlackEnterprise.com: You’re a busy CEO. What do you do daily, weekly, or monthly to ensure you stay healthy? 

Walker: I exercise, eat healthy meals, and engage in daily prayer and mindfulness. My diet includes eating vegetables (raw when possible) and fruits regularly and limiting protein to mainly fish or other forms of seafood.

I also don’t deprive myself of sweets. I intentionally limit the sugar I consume each day by monitoring the amount throughout the day. I don’t drink sugar-filled sodas or other sugary drinks—including fruit juices. I prefer my daily sugar allocation to come from a small dessert or treat after dinner (likely a small amount of chocolate).

I pray daily. I love starting my day with prayer—this helps me start the day with a solid perspective and a strong sense of connectivity. I also like ending my day with prayer, including expressing gratitude and thanks no matter what has happened throughout the day.

How important is it for professional women to take care of their physical and mental well-being while making boss moves?

I have found that when I feel good mentally, emotionally, and physically, I have an increased level of confidence, clarity, stamina, agility, and motivation. In addition, taking care of our physical and mental selves represents one of the highest forms of self-respect, despite anything else that may be occurring in our lives. When you respect yourself, you are better able to respect others, which leads to better interactions with and sensitivity to others.

Let’s talk fitness. What type of classes or workouts work for you? Why?
I love running and I thoroughly enjoy the way I feel both mentally and physically after a long run. Running not only helps me with my fitness goals but also provides the “quiet” and “mental” time I crave or need to contemplate and work through personal or professional issues, plans, or strategies. Running time gives me the opportunity to visualize the achievement of personal goals and is the perfect individual activity that provides me with a sense of personal accomplishment. When I am able, to will bike or attend weight classes.