Tuesday, July 01, 2014
Family vacation mode. First family vacation frustrating, so much time driving and visiting, only found enough time to take a decent walk 3 out of 10 days. I like visiting BUT I can't live like this, because I have no exercise/fitness reserve and lost more than I gained. I was hoping this time "off' would help me ease back on track. I was so depressed by the end of my vacation, I couldn't honestly tell anyone it was a good vacation, just a few good days. I guess I shouldn't dump on whoever is asking how it went, they can't help it.
SO what to do? I squeezed a couple of short walks in yesterday and a hike today. Thank you God! I love walks. My mood is lifted on a hike even if I'm winded, I don't care. I'm so happy to be out in nature! It's hard to understand why it's so hard to make time for walks, that is, time for myself.
Every goal I've set for myself in the past year, big or small, I've only kept for about a week before it's interrupted. Often, the interruption/s lasts several days, then I'm not only discouraged about failing my goal, but I'm also "behind" on other work, and miss even more days of exercise trying to catch up on housekeeping and other commitments. As much as I wish I could stick to a routine 5 days a week like I used to before kids, my role as mother and wife doesn't seem to allow it. And then when I get time, my energy is so far gone I don't use my time well.
Continued failing fitness is not an acceptable price to pay. I love walking and some sports and have many interests, but the price of failing to consistently make time for myself is that I get more winded now than I did when I was 8 months pregnant and weighed 20 pounds more.
"I need to be flexible," has been my mantra. But I need a better mantra. I need to be less flexible. Just as I'm inflexible about eating every day, about cleaning the stove top or feeding the pets, I need to be inflexible about exercising. If that means we visit fewer people and don't travel as far, so be it. If that means assigning my family more chores so I can take a hike, or insisting that my youngest child bicycle alongside me whether she wants to or not, so be it. I already know what happens when I allow my needs to slide--I lose fitness. I get depressed. I get mad at myself and resent others. I lose interest and enthusiasm for my interests. I get less done, and I enjoy life less. On the other hand, when I take good care of myself, I reverse all that for the better, I love life, and I'm filled with enthusiasm for others and my work. Now I have moments of that; but I remember times of much more energy and enthusiasm. I know that it is possible.
I have a date to keep. With myself. I need to ask, even insist, for my family and friends to help me take time to take care of myself. Exactly what I do for exercise and when I do it is negotiable; what is not negotiable is whether I do it. This is not impossible.
Monday, June 09, 2014
I kept my resolution for 8 days, and it felt great. Then I got "too busy" and after one more week, I feel bloated and sleepy. Hmm, so how will I stay on track better next week? And all summer?
In the meantime, in the busyness of last week and all the end-of-school celebrating, two of my kids have ailing stomachs. They're not sick, they just feel off and their guts are off. Their diet has been worse than usual--more sugar, lots of bread, less veggies and meat. After a long talk with my DS, and observations of my DD, I am reluctantly facing up to the fact that they are probably suffering from yeast overgrowth, and that to help them, I will need to be prepared and consistent not just in avoiding sugar, but in cutting way back on the convenience of bread, sandwiches, pancakes, et. I'm not sure if my reluctance is from my own fondness of breads & flour stuff, or because it will be hard to steer my kids away from yeast-growing foods, or because I anticipate my DH will resist this change. I've suspected a gluten intolerance in my DD for years, but he has been unwilling to modify our family diet, preferring that she get separate, special food.
I have a list of healthy, good foods and menus. I have the knowledge about what and how to cook. It's the emotional battle I fear, of the things that other members of the family won't want to give up, the ever-present temptation of having "off-limits" food in the house and on the table. I don't like cooking separate meals; to me it belies lack of hospitality and inclusion, plus it's more work. I will need to pick my battles carefully to succeed in this. I may need to give up on my desire that we all eat the same food. The one new help is that my DS now understands the relationship between how he feels and what he eats and wants to try this for his own sake.
OK, back to my Pilates resolution tomorrow, and here's to making it a priority to cook and eat in a way that is healthy for my whole family. May God help me!
Tuesday, May 27, 2014
I keep losing my way to my blog!
OK, now that I've found you, I've been formulating a new improved plan:
100 Day Challenge:
1) Do 20 minutes beginning Pilates tape for 30 days
Do 20 minutes intermediate Pilates tape for 30 days
Do 20 minutes advanced Pilates tape for 30 days (or revert to intermediate)
Do something fun & different for 10 days (swim, bicycle, row, weights, dance...anything!)
Come up with a new goal, or repeat this goal, for the next 100 days. Keep revisiting every 100 days incase a fresh goal would help keep my interest up.
2) For now, just track other goals (walks, more veggies, less sugar) but keep goal/focus on Pilates.
3) Print out table to track progress (check it off), for 30 days at a time.
Sunday, May 25, 2014
Here's the idea. For the next 10 days, I will give myself a health "spa:"
1) Walk a total of 4 miles, or equivalent exercise (gardening and housecleaning count!)
2) Do beginner's Pilates routine
3) Do at least 5 minutes of strength training (stairs count)
4) Substitute soy or coconut creamer for dairy in my coffee.
5) No more than 2 tablespoons sugar.
Monday, May 19, 2014
When I don't restrain my eating, I gain. I used to enjoy being active but now I'm mostly sedentary and easily winded. I'm 53, usually feel sleepy and lazy and am borderline obese.
I'd been comfortably overweight since college, strong, confident, active, energetic, ambitious. I had three happy, healthy pregnancies in four years. The inactivity and isolation of being a stay at home mom made snacking easier and exercise harder. When my youngest was one, I decided to eat less and exercise more and lost 32 pounds from age 38 to 44, regaining much of my previous strength and endurance. I wavered but managed to lose 5 more pounds over the next two years. I looked pretty darn good for me, fit but worn out from rowing 1 1/2 hours every day for a 10 week rowing challenge. By age 52 I gained all 37 pounds back. Now I'm tired and gaining fat even when my weight stays the same, from losing fitness.
I'm mad at myself for losing ground. I don't expect to be as fit or strong in my 50's as I was in my 20's but neither do I want to keep feeling worse; buying larger, more formless clothes; and losing confidence in myself. Breaking countless promises to myself to be healthier has worn my confidence down.
To make progress, I need to make changes that are flexible and doable. Nothing so lofty and pie-in-the-sky that I can't sustain it. Today was to be a fresh start, beginning with tossing out the leftover heavily frosted cake my husband brought home yesterday. He doesn't even like it, but got mad at me for wanting to throw it in the garbage right away, knowing that I would be the one walking past it all day, being tempted, because I do like it. And then planning healthy meals and jumping into strength training and more exercise. Instead? I had to bring my teenager to urgent care for a strain, and keep my 6 YO home with a fever. I couldn't even toss the cake without being seen and protested. And no leaving home for a walk or making a grocery run for more lettuce. Returning home, I succumbed to eat one slice of cake before tossing it. Then eating too many salted nuts. Nuts!
I want to try using my cell phone as a pedometer and food log. I'm also curious about the Sparkmeter and have been reading here to see how people have used it or liked it. My cell phone was a gift from my husband and I still don't have access to all its codes. I don't think he's intentionally thwarting me, but sometimes it feels that way. One of the things I do feel better about is that I am asserting myself more in our marriage, but I see I have a ways to go. That doesn't seem to come naturally to me.
OK, too much information. Time to do some strength training instead of just writing about it.
1) Regular strength training
2) Assert myself more
3) Avoid sugar and other pitfalls. Throw it out when it's more temptation than I can handle.
4) Cook healthy but simple and varied meals.
5) Keep dietary and exercise goals sustainable.
6) Shrink my waistline and increase my confidence and energy.
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