Friday, January 04, 2013
This year, my goal is to make this healthy way of life even more of a lifestyle and lose the last bits of 'diet thinking' once and for all. As a part of this process, I want to make fitness a daily habit that no lack of motivation will break. Cardio is not a problem for me as I usually go for a walk every day (well, except this week which has been maybe a bit too lazy..). My downfall is strength training. I just don't like doing it AT ALL. Every time I finish a workout I feel great, but I'd lie if I said I liked it. However, I know it is healthy and beneficial to do some strength training regularly, and I'm now adding just 10 minutes of strength training to my daily routine (excluding the weekends at least for now).
This week, I have done at least 10 minutes of ST and I have to say it's making a huge difference! Not on my physical appearance since it's only 10 minutes and I've only been doing it for a week, but I feel a lot different. I'm choosing exercises I actually like and taking it one step at a time. Maybe I'll even start to like it eventually. Besides, small bits of fitness eventually add up! A fitness goal of 10 minutes of ST a day five times a week is doable and realistic, and it will build momentum for weeks and months to come. I'm trying to get a streak going and I want to do at least 4 consecutive weeks of this :)
I'll give you guys an update later on this month to tell you how the streak is going! Right now I'm feeling very good about it!
Thursday, January 03, 2013
I used to take yoga classes and I really liked it, but then I stopped going because they were so expensive. I did yoga regularly on my own and it really made me feel so great but then I stopped that, too - for whatever reason.
I hadn't done it in a while but this week I have started doing it again! It's a relatively short routine, it takes me about 35-45 minutes to complete but I feel so good when I'm done! Like a whole new person. It's really energizing and relaxing, as well as quite a nice workout even though it doesn't make me sweat like jogging does :)
I'm going to make this a regular thing now. My goal is to do yoga for 45 minutes at least three times a week. I'm sure it'll help me relax and deal with my stress better.
Have you guys ever tried yoga? Did you like it? :)
Wednesday, January 02, 2013
Today I joined the Official Stress Busting Challenge, which is a challenge created by SparkPeople to help reduce stress and to find effective ways to deal with it when it does occur.
I am chronically stressed. I'm not joking. Even when I have no reason to be stressed out, I usually am. I've been trying to figure out what causes it: maybe it's something I've learned growing up (my mother is often stressed out), maybe it's just my personality. Maybe it's because of the fact that I'm also a bit of control freak and like to feel in control of everything (which rarely actually happens, and which ends up causing a lot of stress).
As a part of the action steps of Week 1, I took the SparkPeople Stress Test. When I was taking it, I realized exactly how pointless my stress is. THERE IS NO REAL REASON FOR MY STRESS and yet I don't seem to be able to shake it. The result of the test was: "You may have some vulnerability towards stress."
ARE YOU KIDDING ME?
Based on the answers given, I should be relatively stress-free. Then why am I so stressed out? Here are a few examples of the questions in the test: Are you eating at least one balanced, hot meal a day? (yes), Do you smoke? (never), Do you drink alcohol? (no/very rarely), Do you drink caffeinated drinks? (never), Do you take some time every day just for yourself? (yes), Do you do something fun each week? (yes)...
Seriously. This is crazy. I'm a college student with a fairly easy schedule, I have lots of time for myself, I don't have kids or a big house to take care of, I don't have a job, I have enough money, I'm in a wonderful, loving relationship, I have a few close friends, I'm getting healthier and fitter every day, I'm not abusing alcohol... What is going on here? I really hope to figure that out over the course of this challenge!
My theory is that my stress has a lot to do with a) my need to be in control (I'm a list-writer and a compulsive planner: I need to write things down and plan them out very carefully but I rarely follow through - which obviously causes stress), b) the lack of structure in my daily life and c) my poor time management skills, the never ending procrastinating and the fact that I'm a bit lazy and poorly organized. That's so ironic, actually! To be a control freak who is poorly organized!!
Anyway. I really hope to tackle these issues in 2013 and find ways to manage my stress and enjoy my life as it is - because it is, despite everything, pretty wonderful at the moment :)
Monday, December 31, 2012
This past year has truly been a great one. I have made healthy changes in my life and I feel like I'm so much closer to my dreams than a year ago. I've adopted some healthy habits, learned so much about myself, lost 35 pounds so far, moved to a new city to follow my dreams, realized what my goals are in life and become a lot stronger along the way.
I am excited to start the year 2013 knowing in my heart that I have the power to make my life what I want it to be. I know there are a lot of amazing things yet to happen and I can't wait to see what the new year will bring!
I WISH ALL OF YOU A HAPPY NEW YEAR AND BEST OF LUCK WITH ALL YOUR GOALS IN 2013!!!
Here are a few pictures from the past year that were taken along my journey to health:
New Years Eve 2011. I weighed 190 lbs and was very uncomfortable in my own skin. I knew I needed to lose weight and get healthier...
...but I really didn't start working at it until February 15th. When I saw the pictures that my boyfriend took when we were having dinner on Valentine's Day I decided it was time for change. And I never looked back.
In the spring, I traveled to St. Petersburg, Russia, for a few days. I felt a lot more confident and had lost about 15 pounds.
Then the summer came and I was excited to go shopping! By June, I was 30 pounds lighter and I needed some new clothes!
In August, my boyfriend and I spent a wonderful two-week holiday in Greece. I felt beautiful and even confident enough to wear a bikini to the beach!
After that, we moved to a new apartment in a new city and I maintained my new weight for a while. I managed not to gain the weight back even though I went through a period of high stress which usually causes me to gain weight.
And this is me today, at 155 pounds, when I went shopping for a nice dress to wear today on New Year's Eve:
I lost 35 pounds this year. My measurements are now 41 - 32 - 41, and I lost 4.7 inches on my hips, 4 inches on my waist, 4 inches on my bust, 2 inches on my upper arm and 3.5 inches on my thigh. Some might say that's not very much to lose in a year, but I disagree. I am so proud of myself for doing this for me and sticking with it. This is my lifestyle now, not a diet. I'd rather lose 35 pounds in a year than to lose 60 and gain half of them back.
In 2012, I went from this:
I can't wait to see what 2013 will bring!
HAPPY NEW YEAR, my lovely SparkFriends!!!! I love you all!
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