Monday, May 11, 2015

Changes Don't Have to be Big

For some people, jumping right into doing everything they need to do is quite a feat.  Whether it’s losing weight or anything else, only a small majority of people can actually change cold turkey and make it last.  For those that can be successful that way, great - keep doing it.  But I was not one of them.  Little improvements over time was going to be my way. 

I didn’t always think like that.  Almost every time a burst of motivation came to me in the past, I was MAKING PLANS.  I wanted to get myself to the gym every day.  I wanted to eat healthy every meal.  And when all those things didn’t happen, it was a huge burden of failure.  If I didn’t do it the way I wanted to – I didn’t feel like I was going to be able to do it at all.  That circular thought process happened for quite a while.

The truth was, reaching small accomplishments over time really was building up to success.  A lot of the time I had to be reminded of that by my trainer, but then I was able to start seeing them myself and my mindset began to shift.  What I realized is that changes don't have to be big.  At certain points when you look back on what you were like, and the changes you made….you can see how far you’re moved yourself towards your goals.  And it can all start with small things.

Here are a couple examples…

Making the choice to go for a walk, however brief.  That could be to the mailbox and back, could be around the building as a quick work break, could be the stereotypical parking of the car a little further away than you normally do, it could even be starting your day by stepping outside for a bit of fresh air.  Just once, then twice, and then whenever you can.  It doesn’t have to be the miles or hours that our minds sometimes immediately go to when trying to make healthy changes.  If you start small and are successful with that, you bump it up and adjust it over time.  Guess what tends to happen…eventually you keep walking.  And then the stronger you get and the better you feel, the more you want to do it.

Having a protein shake as soon as you walk in the door when you get home from work.  If you find that you go to food as a way to relax or de-stress – try a shake (or even a cold glass of water).  If after you’ve done that, you still feel like having the food that you wanted to eat.  Then have it.  But guess what, you have some good nutrients in your body now as well.  There will be days were that leads to a healthier food choice afterwards, and there will be days when it doesn't.  But the more you do it, the more you’ll notice what those choices do to your body.

Those are just two examples of individual things that can be done on their own.  Small, yes - but that’s what we’re going for in order to make lifestyle changes.  What will eventually happen, is that they start to work in combination.  You realize how a protein shake makes your body feel better.  And then because of that, you might just make a better food choice for dinner or have energy to go for a quick walk.  And then those walks may get longer and longer over time.  And dare I say it, you actually look forward to it because they aren’t as hard to do anymore....(that will be covered in another blog topic).

The main point is, don't get too hung up on what you don’t do - because there will be those days (or even weeks).  But there will be days you do make better choices!  And the more of those choices you make, the better it is over time.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Losing the First 100

What better way to start a blog than a few videos! Some of you may already know me, but not necessarily know what my health goals have been.  And some of you may be getting to know me for the very first time. 

I've thought about sharing my progress for a while now.  In fact, I've recorded a couple videos with the intention of doing a series of them...but that didn’t go too far.  Writing, on the other hand, I did a lot of.  Notes here and there, even a few pictures - all with the intent of not only revisiting them for myself, but eventually sharing some of the things that I learn which could hopefully be useful for others.  

So let's take a look back at my first video (Recorded on 11/15/13, at 15 lbs lost)....

At that point in time things seemed doable, but a long road ahead and the idea of sharing it through a blog started to form.  But then more time went by – making some changes, falling back into old habits, making more changes....and I never really did anything with it.

Then after a number of months, I really started to feel some changes - physically and in mindset.  So I decided to make another video (Recorded on 9/15/14, at 57 lbs and 4 inches lost)

The biggest thing I was learning at that point was that I had to figure out what was going to work for me, and adjusting when things didn't always go so well.  It became even more important to me to share my thoughts and not only give others ideas on what to try for themselves, but also give some insight into what the process is like for someone who is completely changing their lifestyle.

So, here I am 8 months later....only this time I'm getting that first post up.....tonight!  I don't know why but for a long time I was hung up on the name of the website.  I think I had a list of almost 200 names going.  Then it came to me.  I realized how far I had already come in terms of healthy changes, but that I was only mid-way through the first 100 pounds.  Yes, there would be more to lose after that, but the focus now is the challenges of achieving that first goal.  And so, was born. 

Thanks for reading! More posts will be coming soon!