I’m overweight. I’ve tried keeping track of my food; that lasted about 3 months. I’ve tried dieting specifically enjoying (yes, enjoying) the 17 Day Diet, but that lasted only 6 months, both times; other diets I tried lasted far less than that. I’ve tried exercise regimens, and they typically go for 2 to 4 weeks before burnout. What am I doing wrong? Why do I fall off the horse (metaphorically, of course) over and over again? Is it that the excitement of something new wears off? Is it a failure to believe in myself? Do I set unrealistic goals? Is it a lack of support? Am I just lazy?
I’m realizing now that perhaps the issue was never about lack of motivation or will power, but a lack of focus. I’ve always wanted to lose weight because I’ve been overweight, and while that’s a worthy goal, it’s also simply too general. Of course I want to lose weight because in pictures I see how much bigger I am than everyone else, but that’s still just an external factor. Why do I want to lose weight, for me?
I want to get to a healthy weight so that I don’t pant going up a flight of stairs, so that I can easily play with my niece and nephews, and so that I can enjoy group skiing/hiking/biking without falling behind. I want to reach a healthy weight so that when my husband and I start our family, I can be a positive role model for our kids. And I want to lose weight so that I feel healthier and better about myself. I think those are worthy goals. But I also think that feeling healthier and better about myself should be about more than what I weigh; it should include passion for healthy and active living, the enjoyment of foods that properly nourish my body, and taking steps to strengthen my life in all other areas as well.
Realizing that I could never change my outsides without also making changes to my insides was the first step. The second step was to create this blog.
This is not a blog about weight loss. This blog is about nourishing (or exfoliating, if you will) the body, mind and soul because all three contribute to a healthy lifestyle. It’s about finding a balance and striving to create a better me, whatever I happen to weigh.
So where to start? Well, I turned 30 last week, and since that was a bit of a momentous occasion, it seemed like a good time to create a list of 31 goals to complete by my 31st birthday:
1. Blog 2 times weekly.
2. Clean out the spare bedroom.
3. Drink 8 glasses of water daily.
4. Do 1,000 squats in one day.
5. Eat dinner at the kitchen table every week night.
6. Eat salad daily.
7. Exercise for 45 minutes 3 times weekly.
8. Find a family physician.
9. Floss daily.
10. Get my eyes checked.
11. Go 1 day every week without TV.
12. Go to bed by 10:30pm every week night.
13. Keep a gratitude journal daily.
14. Learn chess.
15. Pay off both lines of credit.
16. Play tennis 6 times this summer.
17. Reduce alcohol intake to 5 drinks or less weekly.
18. Register for another group fitness class.
19. Register for spin.
20. Register for yoga.
21. Ride my bike to and from work in spring/summer/fall.
22. Start a blog.
23. Start a running program.
24. Take Jade (our dog) for a walk daily.
25. Take multivitamins daily.
26. Take swimming lessons.
27. Try 3 new veggies 3 different ways.
28. Try 31 new recipes.
29. Try wall climbing.
30. Visit our friends who live out of town.
31. Weed and water garden every week day in spring/summer/fall.
These alphabetized goals (yep, I’m like that) include some easy one-hit-wonders as well as some ongoing habits I’d like to adopt, and all of them are aimed at improving my overall health. Over the next year, you’ll get the play-by-plays while I tackle these goals head-on (how’s that for a football analogy!). Some are going to be super simple and even fun, and others are going to be very hard and maybe even a little terrifying. But it’s all about balance and I’m committed to reaching these goals. I hope you’ll stick around to see how it all works out!