Monday, January 12, 2009

Challenging Myself

Last week, my very brave and very honest friend, Natalie, announced a weight loss challenge on her blog. You can read the details of the path she's setting out for herself and the challenge she's inviting us to join in, here. Each Monday, there's a new installment of the challenge to join.

This challenge comes at a great time for me. I've been itchy to get back into a regular routine of life again, even if our new normal looks really different than previous "normal" looked. I have also been sensing how closely my physical health is tied to my emotional and spiritual health. Now that I've hit the big 4-oh, I have had to be brutally honest with myself in many areas.

I've not shared this before, at least not in this forum, but for the last several years I have struggled with depression. At first, I put it off to the "winter blues" but in my desire to be brutally honest coming into 2008, I finally admitted to myself that it was worse than that. Sticking to routine, maintaining my weight (or even trying to lose some sensibly), setting an up-lifting tone in our home through prayer and worship, and regular exercise have all been invaluable tools to help me manage the symptoms fairly well. Also helpful have been the relationships of a couple real friends who have been consistent, concerned and honest with me. I am not so haughty or deceived to believe that now that our adoption is complete and my life is ever-so-much busier and full of toddler activity, I won't still struggle this year. In fact, with all the sickness and stuff that's been floating around here, I have found myself sinking and floundering these past ten days. So, this challenge is a great opportunity for me to take up the things that I know I can do to improve my own health and maybe lose some weight in the process.

I have been vacillating all week about my commitment and my participation in Natalie's blog challenge. On the one hand, I know I've let a lot of my healthy habits fly right out the window in 2008. Not JUST during this transition with Li'l Empress, but certainly all this change in the recent 4+ months has been taking its toll. My weight since leaving Curves in August reflects that. On the other hand I have also been trying to set some reasonable goals and not commit myself to something I could not stick with for a long term. Exercising consistently is not a huge interest of mine right now, but getting some handles on what I'm eating and when I'm eating it feels manageable to me.

So, I'm joining the challenge today. I am committing to the following three things:
  1. I will diligently track all my food choices, journaling everything I eat, W*ight W*tchers-style. I am even going as far as to follow my recommended points for my age, height and weight. None of which I will be sharing publicly. (Sorry, Nat, I'm not nearly as brave as you yet!)
  2. I will limit my coffee intake (still with my delicious Nestle's Sugar Free Hazelnut Creamer) to one Tigger mug each morning. Additionally, I will limit my Diet Pepsi intake, though I don't currently indulge every day. I will increase my water intake. Not willing to attach a number to that yet.
  3. I am making an effort to head to bed by 10 p.m. 4 out of 7 nights of the week. Fridays don't count and I need the freedom to flex a couple nights, based on our family calendar. An added bonus: those middle-of-the-night soothing sessions with Li'l Empress won't take such a toll on my body if I'm resting more before AND after rocking my brains out in the nursery down the hall!
I think these are reasonable places to start. For me, anyway. I have to admit, I really miss my work-outs at my local C*rves. They agreed to give me a "maternity leave" from Sept. 1- Jan. 1 but in the meantime, the gym had to close its doors. Coming up with the money to join elsewhere and committing to finding child care for Li'l Empress has been a huge deterrent to exercising outside of the house. I think, for the next phase of the challenge, I may be willing to look at a commitment to regularly utilize the two or three work-out dvd's I have from my W*ight W*tcher days. Believe me, if I could afford to go back to WW, I would commit to that too.

So, there it is. I'm also committing to show up Monday with a report of my progress. My hope is that the progress shows itself in numbers falling off the scale, but I am also choosing NOW to be grateful for improved eating, drinking, and sleeping habits. Think you're up for a challenge? Head over to Natalie's post from today, and join up. Working on positive changes together will be fun!


TCC said...

I'm glad you're joining us.

I think the smartest thing is exactly what you are doing - setting goals that are achievable.

Looking forward to doing this with you and achieving healthy life habits together!

Heidi @ GGIP said...

I applaud you for setting the goals and wish all kinds of luck.

I am not good at all at meeting these goals, but we did commit to not having soft drinks in the house at all anymore which is a nice start for health. I was GOING TO cut 75% of my coffee intake, but realized that the quality of my days was getting worse, so I think I will do like you and just have one cup per day. Maybe I'll check out your fat free creamer too since I wasn't as concerned about the caffeine as the fat.

Are there going to be progress updates with this challenge?

julie said...

Eating better over here too. It makes me feel so much better when I do. Emotionaly and physically.

My Little Nest said...

Have you thought about the Wii Fit? I LOVE it, and I'm doing about 23-25 minutes a day. It's very manageable, and you have lots of control on how much and what you want to do. Love it. You're very brave to share. Thanks!

TCKK said...

I wish you well on your journey. I've just started back on WW myself last week.

Natalie said...

Sounds like a winning plan! I hear you with feeling the blues this time of year. Exercise and better eating are great ways to help counter act that. Thanks for participating.

Jessica said...

You have totally encouraged me. I have been talking about seriously losing weight and just have not stuck to it. So thanks for the encouraging words. Maybe we can hold each other accountable.

Amie@HeartSmiles said...

Good for you!!! Thanks for opening up and being so honest. I keep putting it off, but I need to get on it too! NOW!

Good luck!


Aus said...

Well - everything you posted should start making you feel better soon! Great goals - love the honesty - including 'being unwilling to attach a number to that' - stay honest with yourself and you will suceed!

Any any time you're feeling a little wacked / tired / frustrated / whatever - hey - that's what blogs are for!

hugs - prayers - and anything else ya'll might need -

aus and co.