Thanks for all of you who sent me wishes for my two year maintenance anniversary.
It was a surprise, as I didn't really kept track of this anniversary, as healthy living became so much a core thing of my life. According to the statistics, people who maintain weight for 2 years, have 50% chance to keep it on the long term. I'm confident that I will keep my healthy weight for many more years, as I decided to live a healthy life until I die.
I thought to share a few tips that worked for me during this past two years.
First of all, I shifted my focus from weight and weight maintenance to healthy living and maintaining healthy living. I even wrote a article about it on my personal page.
In brief, my experience is that when I focus on reaching a goal weight, by definition I don't focus on maintaining that weight (or living healthy), as I focused on losing weight, so how I would expect to keep it off? I have to focus on changing my life to live a healthy lifestyle, and use weight as a metric to track my progress.
The idea behind this is that when my work involve healthy living, time I spend with daily job works towards a healthier me. First, I decided to work for company developing healthy products, and I was working with fruit preparations and strawberry.
But then, I thought to take it to the next level, and take a bold step: combined my daily job with healthy living directly. I thought why not to do this full time, so I don't do this on top of other things, or part of my job, but this is "the core thing". So far it works wonderfully, and it seems I enjoy doing this much more vs. my previous jobs. As a side effect, as I support others to live healthy, it comes back to me, something like a positive karma.
The job change sounds easy, but in fact it was a longer process, and involved a lot of hesitation, experimentation, consideration.
3. DAILY LIFE
This was about intentional changes in my daily life for the long term, so the healthy way is the default way. This has the benefit that I have to spend much less willpower and energy to do exercise, eat healthy, and have good recovery.
I have transformed my nutrition habits in 2012 (making my own meal 90% of the time, eating raw and fresh fruits and vegetables as much as possible, and radically reorganizing my kitchen for healthy options).
I had three big projects for 2013, all about getting more movement in my daily life: car-free transport, standing-desk for my office, and healthy holidays for the downtime.
Daily Life Projects of 2013 in details
a) WBT life (walking, biking, public transport).
I call it WBT, others call it car-free life.
I don't like to call it "car-free", because it's then still about cars... now we intentionally don't buy a car with my wife, and focus on walking, going by bike, and using train, plane, bus, etc.
Austria is not an easy country to do this, as this European society is obsessed with cars, and in Austria, German Cars. Families have 2, 3 sometimes even 4 cars, teenagers get a scooter or a motorbike with the first legal possibility. Roads are wide, and even in the most remote places in Austria you have beautiful super-high quality asphalt that is good for roller skating, and people drive insane amounts of hours a year. One's car is also a representation about status in society. So having no car, is kind of strange here, people can't really understand. In fact, I only have one single friend who doesn't have a car in their family, my teacher from my contact dance class.
If interested in the numbers, here's a statistic from 2011:
So it's though, but it's not impossible, as we live this way. The location of our apartment is carefully chosen so we can reach everything by walking, and this town is on a well frequented train line (this was also intentional).
Interesting is that the more I live this way, the more people I meet who do the same. In a recent conference, I learned there are even regions for walking-biking-public transport life. Like Freiburg in Germany, where thousands of people live in car-free areas. I have a wish to move to a city which is bike friendly, like Copenhagen in Denmark. Here's a statistic about bike friendly cities. First, I plan to visit these as a travel destination, and explore, and if good, move there.
I work in my daily job in an office, and decided to swap 8-10 h a day of sitting to standing, fidgeting, dancing, walking in place.
I started a few weeks ago, and so far, it is great. I had some fear of being tired, etc. but I don't experience any of it, I just enjoy working this way much more. Also, there is more room in our apartment.
I was thinking how we could do more exercise in a way we enjoy it. I thought that holidays are really nice for that. Among the many sports, we settled on bike touring. It is very cheap, we can explore a lot of things in a relatively short time, and 4-6 hours biking every day trims down fat without any extra effort.
This is something that is easy to do in Austria, they have excellent bike roads everywhere here, and we found that the neighboring countries are also great to explore by bike.
After our first experimental bike tour in Slovenia this summer, it turned out we just love it, and since then we use every single opportunity to get onto our bikes and go. This year we made additional trips to Italy and Hungary, and a lot of day tours in Austria. Now, even when we are not touring, we like to carry our bikes with us on the train. The pictures are from our tour in Italy.
I also plan to buy a foldable bike this year, so I can carry it with me as luggage, so I can save cost on long distance trains.
These were the major events for me in my healthy living. The most important however, was we got married with my (now) wife this year. We made the wedding menu also healthy, it was not easy, but we pulled it off! :-) And of course, I was the last man standing on the floor, with all the endurance I built up in the last years, a full night party is no problem at all.
I started about changing my focus from weight to healthy living.
But do I measure my weight?
Of course, every single morning, I start my day by stepping on my Omron BF511 scale, and check my weight, fat%, and muscle%.
However, I use the data to track my hydration level, and to see trends. This way I can detect easily when things go well, or not well.
This is a small street in Gleisdorf, I often use this path for running intervals. It's just perfect, relatively horizontal, no cars, there's a stream next to it, and it's almost exactly 400m (similar to a round in a running track). Behind the road are the mountains and forests, with tons of possibilities to run, walk, bike, hike.
FOR 2014 - RECOVERY
I think to focus in 2014 on recovery (sleep, meditation, resting). To have this in an intentional and good way in my daily life.
Any tips for that sleep, meditation, resting improvement?
What works for you and what doesn't?
Resources, ideas, suggestions - all welcome!