weekly word of last week was MILESTONES; Here was the discussion:
mile•stone /ˈmîlˌstôn/ ,
noun: milestone; plural noun: milestones
1. a stone set up beside a road to mark the distance in miles to a particular place.
2. an action or event marking a significant change or stage in development.
A milestone is a marker along your journey to show your progress. Much like the mile markers on the highway you use driving down the road. For example;
If you are traveling by car from Cincinnati to St Louis Arch; the total trip is 400 miles. At 65 miles an hour, and no delays, the trip to drive to St. Louis is going to take about 6 hours. Before you jump in the car and drive, you have to prepare for the trip (journey) Fill up the gas tank, get drinks and snacks, decide who else is going besides you and what needs will they have on the trip. Probably you will have to stop for gas. If you have a 15 gallon tank and can go 20 miles per gallon, you will have to stop gas on the way to St Louis or call AAA to come save you!
Since we don’t want to have to be saved, we plan our stop – thus creating a milestone along the trip. Let’s say we are going to stop at 200 miles because we know there is an exit near the half way point of our trip. Now we have created two milestones in one. We have now reached tow milestones on our journey, half way to goal and the milestone to obtain gas and not need saving. How do we celebrate these milestones?
We refuel ourselves, rid ourselves of all that water we have been drinking for two hours, refuel the car, take a walk, and stretch some weary limbs and backs. We take a break in our journey. While we are there, we will probably also reassess our journey. Did it take us three hours to get here? Did it take more? Will we need to make our break quick because it took us longer or can we be at leisure and not worry about getting to the end on time?
Once those decisions are reached, we will get back on the road and the path to our journey’s end. Our last milestone will be arriving at our destination. In this case, the St. Louis Arch. When we arrive we are anxious to begin the new few days, weeks or months we will be at this destination until we make a new goal to go somewhere else.
For me, my health journey and losing weight are much like a road trip. I set a goal to lose weight. And how do I lose weight? I have to burn fat. How do I burn fat? Exercise & eat better. And how do I know how to do those? Education, research, friends. What else will I need on my trip? sleep, watering, motivation, consistency, determination, constant monitoring. And how do I monitor my progress on this weigh lost journey? MILESTONES
And once again, I am back at the topic of the day.
Why are milestones important? Just like the car trip, there is something about knowing you are halfway to your goal. For a health journey, I believe we need to set more frequent and different types of milestones because this is a journey that started the day you set your goal and will not end until the day you no longer have to worry about gaining or losing weight. The day you no longer have to be concerned if you will get high blood pressure, diabetes, thyroid issues, arthritis, broken bones, nerve damage, or permanent physical damage from an accident. In short terms, for the REST OF YOUR LIFE.
We will reach a goal of how much we want to weigh but what will we have changed in ourselves to maintain that loss and not have to begin the journey again?
Here are a few milestones I think we should celebrate, and, depending where you are on your journey you will set your own limits:
Eating 3 servings of fruits & vegetables a day, 3 days a week
Exercising 10 minutes a day, 6 days a week.
Sleeping 7 hours a night, every night
Drinking 5 glasses of water a day
Eating less than 2300 mg of sodium a day
Trying new foods
And when do we reward ourselves? You can set your milestone when you reach the third points of a goal, halfway, one-third of the way. It is truly up to you, how often you need the motivation of a reward to keep you moving forward.
EXAMPLE - Goal: losing weight
I need to lose 10 pounds, to lose 10 pounds I need to exercise, eat better and drink more water to start. For this example, I will just look at exercise.
Where do I start? Having never exercised before, I need to start easily because I don’t know what I like. I can walk thought and ALL the magazines and wellness program at work are talking about how good walking is for you. So I will begin by walking for 10 minutes a day for 5 days a week with the goal to get to the national standard of 3 times a week for 30 minutes. My first milestone will be when I achieve 10 minutes a day, 5 days a week.
Week 1: 10 minutes, 5 days a week is goal. I did 10 minutes 3 days. Not bad but not reward worthy. The milestone set is 10 minutes, 5 days a week.
Week 2: 10 minutes, 5 days goal. I DID IT! YEAH! I met a milestone! This is the first goal in my larger goal. How will I reward myself? Set a new goal? Buy a magazine I have wanted but didn’t want to spend the money on? Take 15 minutes of me time to spark or shop or read?
Week 3: hmmm, I met that milestone and I certainly want to do better. Will I increase this week or next? Feeling a bit sore this week; I will keep the goal the same for week 3.
Next MILESTONE: Increase and meet a new exercise goal. Reward? A new ring? A new pair of shoes? Next week we can talk about rewarding ourselves. When, where, how and why?
Set some milestones on your goal plan this week!
M = Milestone. Set some easy ones for the goals you made on this team & post on your tracking thread post. MILESTONES POSTED
I = Interest, find one new healthy interest this week and do some research on it. SHARE here. NEW INTEREST WAS HIGH PROTEIN EATING PLANS
L = Love, show your teammates some love and stop by their spark pages DONE
E = Exercise, Make a plan to do 10 minutes every day this week. DONE
STONE = Throw rocks at one bad habit this week and work on getting it OUT of your life. STRESS EATING, EMOTIONAL EATING. DOing better but still keeping this on my list of habits to change