Monday, October 10, 2011

October Goals

So my overall goals, and reason for starting this blog, is to not quit. To keep working out. But to get a little more accountability, I now present: Goals for October.

October is a good month in Houston. The weather cools down (and we had a particularly scorching summer that I am glad to be rid of), the days are not yet super short, and its hard to NOT want to be outside.

Earlier this week I was inspired by this idea from Self Magazine: "Here's a new fit plan: Pick your worst diet habit and a challenging fitness goal and attack only those for 4 weeks." (via twitter)
So...

Worst Diet Habit: Skipping over my love affair with Diet Coke, a long story in itself, we'll go with non-deliberate snacking. I'm going to base this plan on the assumption that its ok to eat small snacks between meals to keep metabolism up, and keep from becoming a crazed craving monster and eating everything in sight.
I have a habit of unplanned snacking- I'm talking about licking the bowl after making cookies, or breaking out the pita chips an hour before dinner and polishing off the bag. From now on snacks will be preplanned, portion controlled, and no more than 3 per day. Three is plenty if you assume one between breakfast and lunch, one between lunch and dinner, and one for an evening "dessert." As my schedule changes (overnight shifts are very confusing for the stomach), the placement may vary occasionally, but thats the plan. Also I will, for the sake of this experiment, count any sugared or caloried drink (beer, wine, the demonjuice known as coca cola) as a "snack." That means skipping dessert if I'm going to have a drink with dinner. Also means limiting myself to one drink if I want to keep my midmorning and afternoon snacks.


Exercise goal: Exercise every day for at least 30 minutes. My plan of attack for not giving up and going back to the couch is to make exercise a habit. Though I know that I probably cannot exercise every day (sometimes life just does that to you), I will start each day with the goal to fit it in somehow.
I want to only run once per week (this plus thursday night softball is enough for my ailing foot for now), so the rest of the days are open to all kinds of exercise. Yoga, boyfriend's TRX (affectionately called T-rex), bicycling, and walking are on my list already... but I could use some more ideas. Anything I can find at the local gym, do at home with minimal equipment, or get from Uverse on-demand is fair game!

Progress so far:
Of the 14 days in October, I've exercised on 11 of them... not too shabby.
Snacks I started paying attention to this week, and have held myself to the 3 snack rule. I even broke out the long neglected food scale to measure my pita chips. Tonight I had only 2 snacks on console, to leave room for the Grasshopper Martini I'm going to have after my shift tonight. I've been dreaming about that delicious mint chocolate wonder all day!

I'll check back in next week, let you know how I'm doing on the goals. Feel free to suggest workout ideas, to keep me busy!

New Year, New Blog

New Jewish year that is. Welcome to 5772!

So I decided to redo (again) my blog, which has been the home of my ramblings since I left college 3 years ago. This time, inspired by MegaNerdRuns and the many cool fitbloggers I found through her blog, we're talking about fitness. Seeing Megan post her weekly fitness goals for the world to see has made me want to do the same.

So about me... I am at the precipice that comes at the end of being a newbie. Where you can jump off, dive into that world of fit, motivated people who exercise before dawn and train for marathons. Or you can do what I've done before... give up, go home, lie back down on the couch.

In fall 2006 I was a college Junior. I was overweight and underhappy. I was scared. See I was studying to be an aerospace engineer but the job market looked grim (now it looks remarkably peppy by comparison to 2011) and I decided on a backup plan. I could fly jets for the Navy. Of course I would have to lose 40 pounds, learn to run 3 miles, do some pushups, but other than that it was an excellent backup plan. So I went to the gym, and I ran around the track until I couldn't anymore. Then I did it again and again. By winter break I had reached what has become my new normal weight, 150 (down from almost 190). By the end of summer I was biking 2 miles to the gym, walk/running a few miles around the track, doing weights and situps, and biking home. Also I was killing it on weight watchers and down to my all-time adult low of 130 pounds.

Then I went on a cruise and the diet went out the window. Then my busy senior year started and the exercise started to go out the window. Work, school, senior design, a new boyfriend, the job hunt... it was too much to "fit in" exercise. By the end of senior year I was no longer exercising regularly. Luckily I did find a job (a really awesome one, but we'll tell that story later) so the ruined Navy plan was not needed.

This pattern repeated several more times. The time I started up C25k in May, right before the weather got unbearable and outside was not a place I wanted to be. The time I tried to run a 5k with some coworkers; but it was in February, and one does not exercise over the winter holidays because there's too much eating and relaxing to do. We were all woefully underprepared. Or at the end of that race (in 2009) when we pledged to come back the next year and beat our previous time. Yeah that never happened.

Well this time is different. I think. Why? Plantar fasciitis. Working out is like that weird guy who has a crush on you in high school- you don't like him, you don't want to be his gf, but he's always there if you need a prom date at the last minute or something. Running was like that for me- I could use it, abuse it, and leave it, whenever I wanted. Until the day that, after a run, my left foot was in extreme pain. I couldn't really walk, let alone run. Concerned it was something serious, I immediately put the nix on all unnecessary walking, and all running. I started to wonder what would happen if it was serious... maybe I would never run again! To finish the analogy, suddenly the guy I thought would always be there for me was done waiting in the wings, he had found another girl!
A visit to the podiatrist got me pills, athletic tape on my arch, the order to buy better work shoes (no more ballet flats allowed)... and to only run if it didn't hurt. Which, of course, it did.

But now I have more determination. Not just to run but to exercise in general. Since the moratorium on running (which is now slowly being lifted), I've started biking, walking, trying harder at yoga... This time I'm not turning back. I'm jumping in.