Tag Archives: weight loss

My 30 day challenge

A 30 day challenge. That’s all it took. I’d been battling with the idea of maintaining better health, and exercise has been the number one priority to reach that goal several times. Don’t believe me? The proof is here and here and here. I mean, seriously.

I watched this TED talk on trying something new for thirty days. The speaker, Matt Cutts, basically points out that you can do anything for thirty days. And within that time period, you’ll decide if whatever you challenged yourself with is going to become habit, or if you will drop it on day 31.

It’s a simple principle, really. But it’s also life changing. Give yourself 30 days and try something new. Dedicate yourself to it and own it over that thirty days. So I set out to exercise for thirty days. Either it would become habit or I would drop it on day 31. What did I have to lose?

To be honest, the first eight days still sucked. Knowing you are committing to something for a thirty-day period doesn’t make the pain go away. But after that, I was hooked. I downloaded the Nike GPS app for the iPhone. Now I was tracking my running, sharing my progress on Facebook (which I found made me totally accountable to my goals),  and even allowed people to cheer me on. I even ended my runs with 30 minutes of power yoga, thanks to Jillian Michaels. I love her. In a masochistic, she kicks my a&& and makes me sweat kind of way. Everyone needs a little Jillian in their lives. I just happen to need ALOT.

I’m now at day 31. Granted, I’m nursing some heel/knee pain, but I’ve truly found my motivation and commitment. My mind is clearer, my energy is different, and my body is slowly transforming. Instead of complaining that I have no time to exercise, I find myself making time. It’s now part of my life, not just something I should be doing.

Everyone has to find what works for them. But if you are struggling to achieve a goal, give it a shot. And if you’ve got a great idea for another thirty-day challenge, please share. I’m in the market for my next one.

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Day 1 of my better self

I woke up with a renewed passion for life, jumping out of bed at 5 AM to see what challenges awaited me on this new journey. Ha ha – hardly. Waking up at 5 sucked! However, I did it.

Down the stairs I quietly went, iPod in hand, to rendezvous with my neglected treadmill. Ten minutes into it (I was still walking, not yet running), I found my inflection point – that point where you really start to begin to understand that you have more in you than you give yourself credit for. Forty five minutes later, I was done with a great work out. For you fitness buffs, it would have been your warm up, but I was proud of myself for my efforts.

Then I found it – the renewed passion, the excitement for the journey I was about to begin. Because as I climbed up the stairs to the quiet house, I realized that not only did I just do something great for myself, but I now had at least 30 minutes of peace to myself. AND I COULD HAVE THIS EVERY DAY! Imagine all the possibilities – drinking a cup of coffee and watching the morning snow fall, reading the previous day’s paper that went untouched, maybe even logging on and doing an early morning blog post. The time was mine – all mine!

So while I know that tomorrow will be a tough wake up call, I’m determined to do it. And I’m confident I’m on the way to a more balanced, healthier, better self.

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The quest for 25 pounds

I’m on a quest for 25 pounds. The 25 pounds that are putting me over my recommended BMI. The 25 pounds that I lost after having my daughter 20 months ago, and put back on 8 weeks after starting meds for post partum depression. The 25 pounds that I keep saying I’m going to lose, but don’t have the time to dedicate to exercise and eating well.

I’m a horrible dieter. South Beach, Isagenix, Weight Watchers (even though it’s not a diet, it’s a way of life as the woman weighing me in curtly informed me), I’ve tried them all. And failed each time. I just have no will power when it comes to food.

So I am working on “reforming” my current habits and starting to exercise. We bought a treadmill two years ago and I have barely used it, citing “no time” as an excuse. I became a total “I”m too busy to take care of myself” martyr. You see, I don’t go to the gym. I would like to, but I am totally self concious at the gym. All of these beautifully shaped people running their hearts out and sweating it up on the treadmill. These not-so-beautifully shaped people who have more dedication and motivation than I, lapping me in the swim pool.  And there I am, hoping I can keep myself occupied for ten minutes on the treadmill before becoming embarassed that I’m barely sweating and quit. It’s never a good experience for me. So I got myself a treadmill. No excuses now, except for the time factor. 

So, I took a good, hard look at how I was spending my time. The majority of it was spent taking care of the kids’ needs, trying to excel at work, spending some time with my husband, and keeping up with the house. All important and non-negotiable. But then there was this 1-2 hour time period at night, this complete waste of time, this absurd use of my mental energy. Social games on facebook.

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed them and I’m not knocking those who still play them. But I found myself craving and yearning a good harvest in Farmville, fighting and beating girls in Sorority Life, and feeding some hungry customers in Cafe World. I was tempted with free gifts from my friends – whether it was a pair of Manolo Blahniks in Sorority Life, or a duck-shaped topiary in Farmville. And I wanted to get more experience points to ladder up in Cafe World and be able to hire more friends to work in my cafe.

Um, yeah. I’m a totally stressed out, overweight working mom who does not have the time to exercise. Yeah right. So in one night I gave myself a virtual makeover. Yes, I removed all of those time-wasting applications from my facebook account. And I started exercising. It’s amazing how much time you can find in your day when you evaluate how you are spending your time.

This is step 1 in my quest for 25 pounds. As soon as I figure out step 2, I’ll let you know. But I’m confident that this is a step in the right direction. Not only will the exercise help me with the weight, but clinical studies reinforce better health and less stress if I dedicate myself to it. My facebook social games couldn’t give me any of that.

Happy farming, cooking, and sorority posturing to all my dedicated friends still on those games. If you are looking for me, I’m on my treadmill ; – )

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