Saturday, January 05, 2013
I really need a kick start so I decided to set some basic goals for this first month of the year. They are pretty minimal, since I think that's what I need right now, what with slower than expected recovery from knee surgery, a lousy cold and lingering emotional "stuff."
Stay within my calorie range 29 out of 31 days in January (all except New Years Day and my birthday -- 2 streaks of 14 and 15 days each)
Track my weight and measurements every Saturday. (I thought about doing Wednesday instead but if I'm staying in range anyway, it shouldn't matter).
Do Cardio 4 days a week (elliptical, walking and running) and ST 3 days a week (resistance bands and weights). Other exercise and yoga would be great, but I am committing to doing at least that.
Monitoring my stress level daily in a short blog and using alternative methods for reducing stress (meditation, deep breathing, visualization, music). I am really committed to losing the weight and maintaining this time. Like a fair number of folks on Spark, I've lost substantial pounds (25, for me), only to put them back on again. There were external excuses (illness, injury) and laziness and complacency, but I think that there was an emotional component, too. I'm not really sure what it was about, but this time, I plan to pay more attention to it. I am pretty sure it has to do with stress and conflict and I want to make sure that it doesn't happen again. So, monitoring my stress and finding ways of dealing with it that do not involve food and alcohol will be an ongoing goal for me, starting now.
Reporting how I did at the end of the month.
Looking forward to this challenge!
Thursday, December 27, 2012
Well, I can't say I've been very successful in consuming fewer calories over the past months, or losing weight either. Actually gained 3 lbs but I hate, hate, HATE to move the tracker. Isn't that silly? It is what it is, so I may as well admit it, right?
Ok, if it still is what it is on Sunday, I'll move it. Who knows, maybe it's water weight...
And I'm back on track now, eating right and logging it all in without too much damage done, so I'm not going to regret a little excess during the festivities...
On the bright side, I can run again! (see earlier blog on arthroscopic knee surgery - bleh). Just a little bit, doing 1 mile of running to 3 miles of walking once or twice a week, and doing elliptical and yoga the other days. And doing my PT exercises 3-4 times a week (Hooahhhh! and no, I'm not Army, just picked it up doing their awesome 10 mile race a few times over the past 10 years!). I plan to be VERY careful and not run too much, switching it out with other cardio, but just being able to do cardio again should do a world of good.
So, the holidays were fun this year, but a major distraction on the food front. I had both my boys home and I am literally embarrassed to say how much I spent on food and drink...but I do love to feed them. And they do appreciate it! And we did go to a few parties and take a bottle of wine or a casserole of mac and cheese or, well, no, I didn't take the darn chocolates...they stayed home. Laying in wait for me. And they got me. Note to self: do not purchase large quantities of chocolate thinking you're going to give them away. Because you won't! So, yes the holidays were a bit tough and challenging, but so much fun.
And even through the holidays, I managed to keep on top of my other goals, restoring order to my home...and alright, maybe not doing quite so well with the budget, but I have a plan for restoring order there: I am thinking about getting a roommate when my younger son's job comes through and he gets his own place. That would make a big difference.
Other things not so much fun right now, but I am working them out. I am determined to be as happy as I can. I think that's a reasonable goal, don't you?
So here is to rededication (again!), with much determination and hope that I am able to overcome any obstacles I find in my path!
Cheers! And here's to a happy New Year!
Wednesday, November 07, 2012
For a long time, I was in the business of setting myself a lot of goals which were wonderful and idealistic, but I was never able to fully achieve. I had a whole lot of things on my list like creating art and getting a masters degree that I thought I had to do to be a successful and happy person. For a number of reasons, I thought this was the way a person was supposed to live. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to achieve all of them...and that made me feel less than successful.
So I decided I needed to simplify. To do that, I needed to define my priorities, focus on what was most important to me, and arrange my goals around those priorities. It turns out that maintaining my physical, mental and spiritual health is most important to me. So, while those other things are laudable goals, they really arenít part of the foundation I need to feel strong and healthy the way I want to. Maybe one day Iíll get to those things, but right now, they just arenít what I need.
Once I decided what my highest priorities were, I started paring down my list of goals so I could build around those. Working out and eating right are obvious Ė Iím definitely keeping those! But as it turns out, mental and physical order are also right up there for me.
Clearing my mind with some kind of meditation is really helpful to my emotional and spiritual health - and while Iím not even near hitting my goal of meditating every day, I am still working on it because I think itís worth it. The goal serves as a reminder that I am happier when I am able to take the time to clear the emotional cobwebs and distracting thoughts and focus on maintaining a calm sense of balance in my life. And I am always happier when I do that.
It turns out physical order is important to me too. I like to keep my space in order, and I like to keep my money in order. I am slowly getting my house in order: cleaning closets, getting rid of clothes and knick-knacks and paper I no longer need.
And I finally made a budget and am working on sticking to it. Iím proud of this because Iíve been overspending lately. I made a lot of excuses Ė kidsí college expenses, I deserve this, blah blah blah. The fact is, I have been lacking in discipline and Iím going to get myself in trouble unless I get my finances under control.
I found out that by simplifying my goals, I've been better able to achieve them. Instead of trying to do everything, Iím trying to work methodically on the ones that matter. Maybe Iíll get to the other stuff one day, maybe I wonít. Itís my life, I get to choose.
So, that's it. Just the basics. Itís giving me a feeling of freedom.
I like that.
Saturday, September 08, 2012
A week and a half ago, I had arthroscopic surgery on my right knee to repair a torn medial meniscus. Good news: the doc didnít find any arthritis, which is great news since it is pretty rampant in my family. The bad news: it hurt! For some crazy reason, I didnít expect it to hurt so much, maybe since everyone had told me what an easy surgery and an easy recovery it was, but as I learned, when they cut into you, itís going to hurt! (Duh!) Ah, well, enough crying, I was back at work in 6 days with minimal pain at that point, and only limping a little, so I am not complaining.
The whole experience has really made me appreciate how lucky Iíve been to have enjoyed good health in my life. And how lucky I am to have people to help me when I need itÖmy son took me to the surgery center and drove me home and took care of me (although I think he was hoping I would be goofier coming out of the anesthesia that I actually was Ė he wanted to post his goofy mom on You Tube!)Öand my boyfriend waited on me hand and foot all weekend, and everyone offered to come over and help me, drive me here and there, just wonderful. I am so blessed.
So, I am pretty determined to be really careful about not reinjuring it and about avoiding future injuries. I think I need to set some new fitness goals. Weíll wait and see how the recovery goes, I really love and miss running, but definitely I plan to do a lot more cross-training: riding my bike, Pilates, strength training, that kind of thing. Since I injured myself trying to set a personal best in a 10 mile race, I am not sure whether it was the speed work (which I had never really done before) or the long miles that caused the injury. I was really enjoying the speed work, and I like having specific goals to work towards, so I am going to have to think that over the long term. I may stop doing long races, and see how it feels to do speed work for shorter races (5-10Ks). Or I might explore bike races, since I know at some point, I am going to have to reduce the amount of exercise I do.
But for now, Iím going to focus on recovery, PT for a month, and Iíll check with the therapist about what exercise I can do during that time to stay in shape. Then weíll see what the doc says.
Iíve been pretty undisciplined and not doing a good job of staying on track on my calories. And the scale is definitely showing it - I regained 3 pounds. I think I was feeling sorry for myself and used food to feel better. And itís almost like my body needs to have the discipline of exercise in order to be motivated to maintain discipline on eatingÖwhich is terrible, because now is the time when I really need it! But again, Iím determined to get back on track. I know I can do it.
So cheers to all and be careful out there!
Saturday, August 11, 2012
I just got back from a week and a half on the road for work. It was harder than I thought it would be and between working really long hours and going out at night with colleagues, I didnít meet my goals. I only managed to work out once and I went over my calorie goals for 7 out of ten of those days.
I did have a good talk with my doctorís office and they said I could go ahead and work out, as long as I didnít run and wasnít having too much pain. So, I plan to ride my bike instead and I feel good about that.
Work has been incredibly stressful lately. Other things in my life have also been stressful. But I know I canít let either of those situations stand as barriers to achieving my person goals. Iím not traveling again until the end of the month, and during that time I pledge to focus on myself and my goals, one day at a time.
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