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30 Day Blog Challenge Day 14 - The Moving is Easy

Friday, September 14, 2012

Day 14. What life style changes have been easier than you expected? Why do you think that was?

Hands down, without a doubt, my singular answer is EXERCISE. I can not believe I exercise 5-6 days a week. I can not believe I miss it so much when I have to take a break. I can not believe how much I love it.

It wasn't always this way. It took a long time for me to find exercise I enjoyed enough to make it a priority.

I tried jogging when I was in grad school. In January. New Year's Resolution. Outside. Knives to my asthmatic lungs. I felt like I was dying. That was the end of that!

It was not the right exercise for me.

I went to Curves for a few years. It was 'ok'. I got to 150 and got stuck but I felt like it helped with my mood. BUT my kids were little and they had no childcare and, well, you've read about how 'supportive' my husband was when the kids were little. That meant I didn't go in the summer and had to reestablish the habit every fall. And I did. But at some point I started getting shin splints and no one there could help me. Their final piece of advice was 'take a 3 week break' to let them heal. Yeah..... never went back.

It was not the right exercise for me.

A while later I signed on for FitKick. It kicked my @$$ and not in a good way. I'd never heard of overtraining but when my personal trainer told me about it several years later it was EXACTLY what I was dealing with before I quit FitKick.

It was not the right exercise for me.

Then when my arm was injured I started pilates. I loved it but it aggravated my arm and then I got put on 'restrictions' so I had to drop it.

It was not the right exercise for me.

When I was healed, I hired a trainer and joined the gym. I was totally honest with him about how little I was willing to commit to - just 30' a session 3x a week. Not that I wouldn't do more but that was what I was committing to. I was honest with him about where I was coming from in terms of injury and exercise history. My first workouts were a joke. But he didn't tell me that. And I was SO PROUD of myself for doing them. In a REAL GYM.

It was the right exercise for me.

That's the key - find the RIGHT EXERCISE FOR YOU. I read an article on spark way back that said the answer to 'What exercise should I do?' is 'You should do the exercise you will do.' And I *totally* believe that. Don't sign on for things because you 'should' - because that's what your doctor told you to do or that's what your friend does or that's what's fashionable right now or that's what the people with the body you want do. Just don't do it. Find something you CAN commit to.... probably something easy (or something that can be easy without you knowing just how easy - working with a trainer, if you can afford to, sure helps here).... and do it. Shake it up every 6 weeks. That's a good time to see if you can commit to something 'more'... more intense, more time, more challenging, etc.

Don't stop exercising because the activity you picked was the wrong one for you. Try another. Give each one a good 6 weeks because it takes some time to learn the basics and then decide if you like it enough to continue. At 6 weeks it's time to shake things up anyway.... step it up if you've found your 'thing', shake it up if you haven't or if you just need a change.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

AMANDAUNBIDDEN 9/18/2012 7:19PM

    Such great advice! I'm really enjoying reading your blogs and reading all of your tips. Very helpful to me! emoticon

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SWEDE_SU 9/15/2012 10:31AM

    this is a great blog, tanya - find the exercise that's right for you. it becomes you, a part of your life. really, it's about finding the lifestyle (not diet) that's right for you, as well!

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CODEMAULER 9/14/2012 7:48PM

    A six week period sounds like a great way to establish a habit AND make informed decisions about classes/workouts.

I'm hoping to find a good fit for the activities that I already enjoy.

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ONEKIDSMOM 9/14/2012 7:25PM

    Total agreement here! Sometimes you have to change it up if you like it but burn out, too. When I first joined a gym I told the guy it was like I rented a playground for grownups. That's how I felt... cardio, basketball court, swimming pool? Weight machines scared me, but eventually even they called my name and I, like you, hired a trainer to help me learn to lift properly.

Great blog and great reminder: find what fits YOU! emoticon

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MKELLY72 9/14/2012 10:29AM

    You are so right!
Thank you for sharing your experiences of "not the right exercise for me" !
So many people give up all together because the first or second activity they try doesn't work. You are proof and inspiration that trying something new eventually pays off.
Thanks!
Michelle

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OVERWORKEDJANET 9/14/2012 10:06AM

    Absolutely!

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ONMYMEDS 9/14/2012 10:04AM

    This is good!! Very nice blog.

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30 Day Blog Challenge Day 13 - Food, food, nothing but food (and running)

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Day 13. What has been the hardest life style change you've made for the sake of losing weight, getting fit, or becoming healthier? Any tips for making that change easier?

The hardest adjustment for me has been dealing with food in social situations. I come from a family that LOVES to eat and LOVES to eat a LOT and I was really the first one to drastically change my eating habits. Even now mine are most extreme but my dad had a quintuple bypass almost a year ago and now family gatherings have a lot more healthy options. I don't recommend that approach to make things easier!!! :-) But there are some things that have helped.

1. Find the like-minded people at gatherings and hang out with them. It makes the temptations easier to deal with!

2. When the host asks for ideas, don't be afraid to mention healthy options. At first I just offered to bring them myself but as more and more people that I know get on the bandwagon, I just rattle off ideas.

3. Study menus before eating out and decide what is 'worth' the calories to you. Restaurant menus are strange. Some of the things you expect to be healthy AREN'T and some things that sound unhealthy are the best options! Unfortunately getting the healthiest calories can also be expensive.

4. Eat before you go to meetings where people will bring food or bring healthy food with you. I had to do this today for the PTA meeting. I knew there would be unhealthy baked goods on the table and I knew I wasn't going to have time for lunch before the meeting. I just brought my lunch. And I got ribbed for my healthy food. That used to bother me but it doesn't anymore.

5. Look for things to do that don't center on food. Movies, games, going for coffee (which does NOT have to involve lots of calories).

6. When you going to splurge (because some things are worth splurging for), budget for it as best you can, do it, and get right back to healthy eating with no guilt.

That last one is one that I am still working on and, interestingly, the parenthetical comment is the piece I struggle with. I don't struggle to budget. I don't struggle to get back on track. I don't struggle with guilt. I struggle to just LET GO and SPLURGE. When I was losing weight I almost never felt that anything was worth splurging on. In maintenance I need to learn that I CAN splurge more now and I WILL recover. Obsessing over food is stressful and I am slowly learning that I don't need to be as obsessive as I was when I was losing.

--------

And my running update:
Running for 2012:
95.5 miles + 5.25 miles = 100.75 miles
10 days until my next 5K.

Ran the first 5K in 29:45. Feeling really good about that!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANDASI 9/17/2012 8:00AM

    So relatable.

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LOGOULD 9/13/2012 10:34PM

    A little splurge is not too hard for me....especially when planned in advance. It's those holidays where it is one thing after another - like machine gun fire. Need to get the armor on now!!!

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KONOHA-NIN 9/13/2012 9:24PM

    I think it's great you're working on learning that you can splurge every once in a while! emoticon It is part of finding that balance. I anticipate this being a possible challenge for me in the future too. I also come from a family who loves food, and in quantity! It's a lot of fun to be able to join in these kinds of social situations and I don't want them to end up causing me massive anxiety or guilt.

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CODEMAULER 9/13/2012 9:13PM

    I get a lot of grief for not joining my co-workers for lunch, etc., but the choices are limited... and my options will not be hampered.

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I know it's tough and not always popular, but where are these people when I'm working out? It's all about my journey, every step.

That and my splurges are enjoyed with the company I choose. Overdoing it at a work lunch? Not when I can enjoy a special meal with my guy and our closest friends. That is what helps me to "just let go" once in a while.

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ONEKIDSMOM 9/13/2012 7:09PM

    Great tips and practical ones. We all have ones that we struggle with from time to time... today I let myself have a half cup of ice cream when the birthday bash at work was held... I have trouble letting myself do this, BECAUSE it sets me up for a struggle to STOP. So often I find it easier just not to start.

But I believe it is important to once in a while splurge in maintenance so we don't freak out and flip to the dark side of compulsive under eating. Good job.

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GOSPARK45 9/13/2012 6:22PM

    You've come up with a lot of good options for dealing with your worst problem with your life style change.
Congrats on your 100 miles. Wow! emoticon

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FISEFTON 9/13/2012 3:25PM

    Congratulations on learning to look for healthy options and not mind taking your own if it is the easiest way for you to stay on track. Food is also my biggest downfall and probably the reason why weight loss is such a slow process for me - I can keep on track for about 3 weeks out of a month but then splurge on week 4. Interestingly, for me, this doesn't damage my weight loss too much it just means that I only lose about 1 1/2 lbs in a month instead of 2. I can live with that as my main focus has changed from weight loss to fitness and inch loss, I think, I hope. Who am I kidding, I'm still a slave to the scale!

I hope you learn to LET GO and SPLURGE. You know you can allow yourself a treat.
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30 Day Blog Challenge Day 12 - MORE Strong IS the New Skinny

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Day 12. Post a picture of your inspiration. Thinspiration if that's your thing. Fitspiration if that's what you're after. Heathspiration if that's your primary goal. Why is this person inspiring to you?

Early in my latest endeavor to lose weight I found the Strong is the New Skinny blog.

Please go check out her latest post. You'll see what I mean.
strongisnewskinny.blogspot.com/

Marsha is my inspiration. She is my mental inspiration. She is my weight loss inspiration. She is my fitness inspiration. I gobbled up the blog. I stayed up late. I got up early. I'm sure my husband wondered what the HECK was so engrossing. I could not believe that she did what she did:



If she could do it, *I* could do it.

And I did :-)



I still go back... more often than she posts, even.... to get re-inspired but also to remind myself of 'where' I was when I found her blog. How amazed I was that anyone could do what she did. It's a real confidence booster for me :-)

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CONFIDENTLY_FIT 9/13/2012 6:13AM

    Thanks for including the link...will have to check her blog out!

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CODEMAULER 9/12/2012 11:30PM

    You are an inspiration to me... would it be cheezy to use your pic on my blog?

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Rockin' those abs... I'd like to give that a whirl, too!

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LOGOULD 9/12/2012 10:47PM

    Thanks....gonna have to double up on some blog topics to play catch up but that's okay. Want to go check out this inspiring woman right now though. I'm needing a little pick me up! Thanks for encouraging and inspiring me to take up this challenge. It is just the right step to help me continue forward progress at this point in my journey. Thank you also, for sharing your journey with us!

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ONEKIDSMOM 9/12/2012 7:06PM

    Yes, another truly inspiring example! Thanks!

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GOSPARK45 9/12/2012 10:57AM

    Thank you for directing us to Marsha. She is truly a joy to read and ponder.
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HAPPYSOUL91 9/12/2012 9:13AM

    You are amazing - your pictures state it also thx for the site, I have bookmarked it. I really look forward to your daily blogs on this 30 day journey, it has encouraged me to go for it.

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JUDYAMK 9/12/2012 8:38AM

    I can not thank you enough for posting the site you added for us to check out. You are so amazing what you have done.I love the before & after. I was told this " I will be 62 on Christmas & the person said at your age what do you care ? I was hurt by this but I told her every woman wants to look there best at any age.I want to be healthy & fit as I slip into the twilight years of my life. Thank you again for posting
Judy


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MOONSTORMER 9/12/2012 8:35AM

    you look amazing!!

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EMGERBER 9/12/2012 8:33AM

    WOW you look great, thank you for sharing.

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KANOE10 9/12/2012 8:32AM

    That is a great link. I love her blog and find it inspirational. Thanks for a great post.
You look wonderful.

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KONOHA-NIN 9/12/2012 8:32AM

    Thanks for sharing!

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62NVON 9/12/2012 8:30AM

    You are my bikini hero! You look amazing!!!

I love SINS & Strong Lola too. =)

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DLDROST 9/12/2012 8:28AM

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30 Day Blog Challenge Day 11 - Strong IS the New Skinny (and running)

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Day 11. What do you like most about your body? Has what you like most about your changed as you've progressed towards your goals?

I love how strong and flexible I am and I can NOT believe I run. I'm not surprised that I am strong but it's great that I *look* strong too :-) I've been flexible before but never in a way that makes my daily activities feel easy like this flexibility does. I think that's because as I got stronger my balance improved so I can take full advantage of my flexibility. Neat little package deal there. The biggest surprise for me is that I CAN run and actually ENJOY pushing myself that way. I still get to a point where I am questioning my sanity for running for no reason (no one is chasing me, I don't need to get anywhere.... mostly I run in place on a treadmill?!?!!) but mostly I enjoy it.... or I wouldn't keep doing it.

What I like about my body has NOT changed like I thought it would. I set out thinking how much I would love to be skinny again. Tiny waist, no rolls, no double chin, cheekbones. Before those things came about I started to get muscular and I loved it. I love my shoulders, my calves, my back. And I thought eventually I'd take more pride in being thin/skinny but, um, nope. I love being strong more than being skinny!

~~~~~
And my running update:
Running for 2012:
90.25 miles + 5.25 miles = 95.5 miles
12 days until my next 5K.

I didn't have any shin pain or achiles pain or a stitch in my side AT ALL today. In fact, I didn't even start wondering why the hell I was torturing myself by running until I was 4.5 miles in :-) When do I get to stop saying 'I just started running' and just say 'I'm a runner."?

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANDASI 9/12/2012 7:14AM

    emoticon

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CONFIDENTLY_FIT 9/12/2012 5:58AM

    AWESOME!!!!

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MOONSTORMER 9/12/2012 1:46AM

    love it - glad your strength and flexibility make the rest of your life better!

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KONOHA-NIN 9/11/2012 11:26PM

    "Strong is the new skinny" - nice. And I think that if you enjoy running, you can call yourself a runner! emoticon

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MOBYCARP 9/11/2012 8:44PM

    You get to decide whether you're a runner. I decided I was a runner when I demonstrated that I could run continually for 30 minutes.

By that measure, I'm not a runner right now. But the Red Cross nurses who take my pulse and blood pressure all seem to think I'm a runner, even if I can't run as much as I'd like to right now.

My take: If you're running over 5 miles in a session routinely, you're a runner. I aspire to join you in that category.

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ONEKIDSMOM 9/11/2012 6:37PM

    Love this bit: "When do I get to stop saying 'I just started running' and just say 'I'm a runner."? "

You're a runner if you even ask the question! emoticon

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62NVON 9/11/2012 11:59AM

    I agree 100%! I don't want to be skinny. I want to be strong and FIT!

Your abs are amazing. Wow.

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LOGOULD 9/11/2012 11:20AM

    Once you are to the point that you can even ask "When do I get to stop saying 'I just started running' and just say 'I'm a runner."?........you ARE a runner! Here's you official emoticon to the emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon club!!!!

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DOGLADY13 9/11/2012 10:58AM

    I'm with you about the run/torture thing. When I'm outside it's not so bad. I can forget about how I think running is torture and enjoy the scenery. That lasts for about, oh, twenty steps. LOL Running on the treadmill is entirely different. Treadmill running is just dreadful. The Y has magazines dedicated entirely to building wooden sailboats. I take one of them and cover up the display on the treadmill so I can't obsess over the display. And who knew there were magazines dedicated just to wooden sailboats?

Comment edited on: 9/11/2012 10:59:25 AM

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MJZHERE 9/11/2012 10:57AM

  Just finished posting and I realized the feeling of strength from my body has been what I have always prized the most also. It is so good to know we have bodies that are capable! To you, a runner! emoticon

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JENNYR0506 9/11/2012 10:25AM

    So glad you are enjoying running. I would love to be a runner. In my mind I AM a runner. I visualize myself running smoothly and easily like I see the 20 and 30 somethings doing, but my reality has always been very different. When I start running my body says - NO!! I have to be content now with being a very fast walker!

emoticon Jenny

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CODEMAULER 9/11/2012 9:26AM

    Congrats on the pain-free run; being active is its own reward!!

I love gaining strength and muscle tone, too!

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30 Day Blog Challenge Day 10 - Why am I doing this to myself?

Monday, September 10, 2012

Day 10: Why are you working towards the goal you talked about on Day 1? Particular health goal? Size goal? Activity goal? Vanity goal?

OVERALL GOAL: Maintenance :-) My goal weight is 126 pounds. I made goal 10/22/11 and I've maintained successfully since. I feel happiest at 124 and I get really antsy at 128.

This is mostly a vanity goal since I haven't really had a real health scare yet. I have a family history of many obesity-related illnesses. On some level I want to maintain a healthy weight to avoid those illnesses but I think I could do that at 10 or even 20 pounds heavier than I am. I am staying *this* small because I like being this small. Practically speaking I bought my summer wardrobe below goal and my winter wardrobe at or below goal and both start to feel a tad tight at 128. I have NO size 6 or 8 clothing. NOTHING. If my 4s get too tight I have to buy new clothes and THAT is SO NOT something I want to do.

SHORT TERM GOAL: THIS MONTH: I'd like to get back to maintaining in the 124-126 range (instead of the 126-128 range) with body fat back down around 20%. I'd like to run my second 5K in 30 minutes or less. I'd like to be half done with my Fitness Nutrition Specialist Certification. My overarching goal is to end September is to feel like I've got my groove back :-)

The weight and body fat goal is a fitness and, I guess, a vanity goal. I think my body is healthy at 20% but I do have to be careful not to dip too far below because, so far, it has not been happy there. The 5K goal is a fitness goal. The FNS certification is an wellness goal. I have a lot of emotionally-charged intellectual work to do managing the health and educational needs of my children. My FNS certification is *mine* and 100% intellectual. Working on it makes me feel good mentally.

~~~~~

We had a very nice weekend. We kicked back on Friday night. DH went out with some people from work for a bit. DD and I went to a purse party which is the first time I've ever taken her on a GNO. I was so happy she enjoyed it. Then we had a late appetizer dinner together. Saturday we went to the premium outlets and out to lunch. The guys didn't buy much but DD and I had a grand time. PJs, sneakers, a few fall outfits for me. Sunday I had had enough worry about my son's arm (he fell on the newly-waxed floors on the first day of school) and took him to urgent care... and the doc sent us off to the hospital for x-rays.... no break. Huge relief! It took a lot of time though! We had an early dinner and addressed chores (laundry/dishes/clutter/homework/instrumen
t practice/forms) before going to evening Mass. Busy but low-stress (save worrying about DS's arm).

This week is getting busy.... school is ramping up.... 2 PTA meetings, a school committee meeting, scouts, 2 training sessions for the kids.... and it's just going to get busier as the year goes on!

But I'm trying to keep on top of it! Taking care of myself too. I went to my first Power class in a v-e-r-y long time. I've only gone to 1 before and it felt so rushed and I just couldn't get my weights right. This release was not so frenetic. I still got most of the weights wrong but now that I am more familiar with how the releases work (6 weeks on each), I know that if I stick with it I will learn the routines and get better at matching the weights to my abilities. After Power I stuck around for Centergy. Right now my plan is to do those 2 back to back on Mondays (of course, I then came home and made an appointment to meet with all my daughter's teachers next Monday morning so next week I'll have to go Wednesday or Friday).

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CODEMAULER 9/11/2012 8:11AM

    I think you've got a handle on your "busy" and know how to manage all of these goals. Give yourself enough time and I'm sure that you'll tackle everything.

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ANDASI 9/11/2012 4:44AM

    emoticon

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MOONSTORMER 9/11/2012 1:23AM

    love it! glad your son was okay and hope you are getting settled into a new routine. i actually miss back to school time...

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ONEKIDSMOM 9/10/2012 7:23PM

    To getting the groove back! emoticon

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GOSPARK45 9/10/2012 4:22PM

    You sure are a busy woman!

Thank you for doing this blog challenge. I think everyone is enjoying it. I've never
done blogs before, so this is a great start. It's fun to get to know all these people.
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DOGLADY13 9/10/2012 2:23PM

    I love the FNS Certification. That's such a great goal.

I am a busy woman. I know this. But then I read your blog and other women's blogs and I wonder how you get it all done. I suspect that some people get a time warp machine that allows them to add a few hours to each day so they can get enough sleep.

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LOGOULD 9/10/2012 1:36PM

    Thank you so much for passing on the idea of the blog challenge - sounds like your life is as hectic as mine. That means I should have no reason not to try to do this - I'm adding myself a goal of at least 5 out of 7 days per week. (It's all about perseverance and progress....not perfection right?!?) Looking forward to getting to know you better!

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