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My goals for 2018

When I unveiled my big goals for 2018, I mentioned that I just couldn’t help but have a goal to “lose weight and feel great” this year.  I put on a BUNCH of weight during (and after) cancer treatment last year, when my hormones were getting all messed up and my lifestyle suddenly became more sedentary. {Read my entire cancer story here.}  There are many reasons why I am focusing on losing the cancer weight this year that go beyond a number on the scale.  

My perfectionist tendencies are a major battle when it comes to any weight loss journey I have undertaken in the past.  I try to make all of these healthy changes all at once and then, the first time I slip up, I get frustrated with myself and eventually quit. I decided to take a different approach this year.  I am changing my habits, one month at a time.  Since it takes 21 days to form a new habit, I figured that in one month I could form a new habit and get comfortable with it before moving on to the next thing.

First, I guess I should report on how I did with my first goal of ditching sugar.

Well…..I started strong.  That counts for something, right?!

I quit sugar cold turkey (the only way that I can do it, since I’m a bit of an addict) and I did a really good job of snacking on fruits and veggies instead of sugar. I drank only water – – no juice or pop.  I got through the withdrawal and craving and did a pretty good job of sticking to one sweet treat per week.

But eventually, reality set in.  I never expected myself to keep up a life of no sugar, which is why I gave myself the permission to have one sweet treat per week.  I am who I am, and I love me some sweets.  So I’m gonna keep it real and tell you that I have had more than one sweet treat per week for the past month or so.  In the past, the fact that sugar snuck back into my life a little more than I wanted would have caused me to get frustrated and quit, but not this time.  Overall, I have SIGNIFICANTLY decreased my sugar intake and I am proud of that.  The number on the scale hasn’t budged, but instead of worrying about the lack of weight lost, I’m going to celebrate the lack of weight GAINED. And I am now ready to add on to my healthy habits….

Feeling Great in One-Eight - Step Two: Daily Exercise

For the next month, my focus is going to be on adding consistent exercise into my daily routine.  We live in very close proximity to the kids’ school, our church, the grocery store, and the public library, so I have been walking a LOT since our move.  But my sore and tired body has clued me in to the fact that I still need more daily exercise.  Intentional movement rather than incidental movement.  

As I’m sure is the case with everyone, there are a few hurdles that are always around when it comes to fitting daily exercise into my schedule.  Here is what I have planned for my particular hurdles.

HURDLE #1 – Making Decisions

I don’t know about you, but just making a decision about WHAT I’m going to be doing for exercise is half the battle.  Since my current level of fitness is not conducive to most of the workout videos and equipment that I have used in the past, I had to look around for just the right combination of cardio and strength training.  After a lot of trial, error, and soreness, I have found that a good old-fashioned walk/jog on our elliptical coupled with yoga has been the best option for me right now.  But I can’t do just any yoga right now; I am just too weak, sore, and out of shape.  I finally found the perfect yoga video by Adriene on Youtube – a 20 minute yoga stretch practice.

HURDLE #2 – Finding Time

There are so many things that I try to fit into a day, that it’s hard to add even one more commitment to my schedule.  However, taking time for my health is definitely a priority.  What’s been interesting is that, since ditching social media for the most part {read about that decision here}, I have found several pockets of extra time, especially in the morning when I might linger over social media after I check it during breakfast.   I have decided that the best time for me to exercise is after I drop the big kids off at school.  I would love to say that I’m one of those women who can wake up early and exercise, but then I’d be a liar.  🙂

HURDLE #3 – Childcare

Right now I don’t have the extra funds to go to a gym with free childcare, so I have a busy two-and-a-half-year-old who is awake and ready for fun when I’m trying to exercise.  My goal is to have the garage cleaned out so that Ladybug can play with her ride-on toys while I work on the cardio machines, but for now I let her watch an episode of Paw Patrol while I do my 20 minutes of cardio.  The chair where she watches TV is right next to the door leading to the garage, so I can watch her while I’m working out.   Afterwards, it’s no big deal for me to do the yoga stretching in the living room while she plays.

So that’s how I’m dealing with the three major hurdles that I always come across when it’s time to think about daily exercise.

The other part of my focus on exercise this month is to simply stay on my feet as much as possible.  We have a trip coming up (I can’t give you details yet, but it’s going to be AWESOME).  This trip is going to require me to be on my feet a bit more than I’m used to and I’m a little worried about how my cancer-survivor body is going to hold up. I’m hopeful that this month of “vacation training” will be just the ticket.

I’ll keep you posted on my progress…good, bad, or ugly!

What are your hurdles to daily exercise and how do you overcome them?  I’d love to hear about it in the comments below!