Thursday, February 18, 2010
I didn't realize until Debra_T went on vacation how much it's her morning posts that spur me to post. Seriously, until she started putting those thought-provoking things out there at 6 a.m. my time, I was a once or twice a week blogger.
OK, maybe there were other life things (like work, my son's online games that he drags me into from afar, etc.) that got in the way, but she really got me going and writing!
Anyhow, 'nuff to say, work's a little busy and that's taking a lot of my energy... to the point where I'm not even entering my foods on SP... but fear not, I keep a paper journal, and I'm still working at it. I am determined that this work project is NOT going to take me down the relapse path.
Not this time! This project will last six to nine months and my natural tendency is to sacrifice my own time to get the job done. Well, if doing that ruins my health, not such a good idea, eh? So, I'm enlisting the help of other "mature" workers to push each other to maintain our healthy habits throughout the length and breadth of this challenge!
And I still have a little Spark to keep me going! Good health and good habits to us all.
Monday, February 15, 2010
Having set my Stage I goals realistically and in harmony with how life is going... stage I was good. I did my pep talks, and I stayed with my nutrition and exercise plans... the one bit I might not have hit a home run on was tracking the water consumption... so I'll take another shot at that in Stage II.
Stage II focus is on healthy diet habits:
- Five fruits and vegetable servings a day
- Eat breakfast every day
- Drink 8 cups of water every day
- Track food most days
- Consistently exercise 10 minutes a day
- Get adequate sleep (7 - 8 hours a night)
Since these are already things that I do, this is pretty much a re-commitment to keep at it. Fits right in with entering maintenance, eh? They are all things the body craves. All that remains is to track it.
It's a holiday for me today (President's Day - U.S.) so perfect time to shift from Stage I to Stage II.
Thinking of all my Spark-ling friends today. May your day be full of hope and peace.
Sunday, February 14, 2010
I rewarded myself yesterday with a premium ticket to see "The World Famous Lipizzaner Stallion Show". It was wonderful, and I am musing over the show as motivation to continue my own efforts at training.
What athletes these horses are! What patience their trainers have to train them in the gentle way they do, in the great tradition of dressage and the Spanish Riding School. Although this is an American show, they use the same principles of training that have been used for centuries by that great institution. And of course, the same breed stock.
I'm a great fan of "being there" whether it is standing in the Sistine Chapel looking up at Michaelangelo's "Creation of Man", in Florence gazing on his statue of David, riding a jet boat up the snake river through Hell's Canyon, walking up Scott's Bluff, attending a major league baseball game, or, in this case, seeing a live horse performing "airs above the ground". It lifts the heart, more than a photograph or a movie can do.
I think these things help me feel present and alive on the planet. Obviously they are not something that I do every day, or all the time. They are the jewels scattered throughout a lifetime, making memories to look back on, or dreams to look forward to.
When putting together a plan for fitness and healthy habits... having things like this to look forward to makes a difference.
As for the training of the athletes themselves... none of these horses do anything that was not a natural move they performed in play as colts. The same is true of us... being fit and healthy is what we were born to be, but it takes training to bring out our best performance on cue. It takes patience, and gentle persuasion... rewards and correction... you cannot punish excellence into being. But you can coax and encourage it.
May we remember this as we encourage excellence in ourselves!
Saturday, February 13, 2010
I'm sitting watching a myriad of emotions wash over me. Coffee mug by my side, TV show on netflix on another window. I put the TV show on pause, to deal with emotions that are flitting around and competing for top position in the brain.
* Valentine's Day (and being "alone")
* My ex (and of course why he's my ex)
* My son (deployed, and whether I'll even get an IM from him this weekend - can we say impending self-pity?)
* Work (and the big stress-inducing project just getting under way... a huge source of past relapses, by the way. Can we spell f-e-a-r?)
* Reflections on recent and past successes in establishing healthy habits (and how I really feel about that)
* Pride in what I see in the mirror this morning (imagine a look at a full-length image and the words "d*mn I look good!" flitting through the consciousness)
* Fear that like all past efforts this will unravel under the pressures of life
* A touch of loneliness
* A touch of defensiveness
So, on to the pep talk, to address these things:
Barb, you've got to keep it green, and re-motivate, here. A lot of times you used to eat large volumes of food to stop feeling these feelings. Now they are here in force!
Let's review strategies that have worked in the past.
* Distraction (the horse show this afternoon might be a good one of that nature, so take full advantage of that, but prepare to deal with the aftermath... when the distraction ends)
* Reasoning (hey, I'm doing that now). I've learned from every past "failure". I'm learning more now. This time, I can do even better. Just because something has always been does NOT mean it will always be!
* Planning, accepting that these emotions are OK, that I will feel them, but that they do not necessarily require action, just acknowledgment.
* Experiencing and enhancing the emotions: if there's sadness, watch a sad movie and let the tears flow. It's OK. That's a bit of transference, and if it works, go for it.
* Giving myself permission to fail. Seriously... if you never failed, you never tried.
* Giving myself permission to succeed! Yes, it IS OK to be the best me I can be, even if it is "not perfect", and even if my life seems consequently "better" on some scale than that of others I care about. There will always be differences... comparison to others is fatal to living your own life!
This last is a very important point for me. I have spent a good deal of my life trying to avoid having people envy me... wanting everyone to like me. I think part of keeping weight on, or relapsing is a "don't envy me" message I try to put out there. It is OK to succeed. It is OK to be pleased with a healthy body. It is OK... I am OK.
There, I think I'm done. And I DO feel better. Here's to staying strong, my friends!
Thursday, February 11, 2010
You guys are amazing, you know that?
To continue this morning's story, I made it past the chocolate again today, mainly due to having posted that blog entry this morning. Tonight I came home to a whole collection of wonderful tips from my Spark Friends... sharing their own experience, strength and hope about one of my weaknesses.
Anyway, today I was in meetings all day, and at a couple of stressful points in the day, I made certain that I went down to walk my loops in the basement. At noon I went outside, across the street, and bought myself my latest reward for working my program: a ticket to see www.lipizzaner.com/lipizzaner_frames
et.asp . Cheaper than a massage, and something I've wanted to do my whole life and never got around to.
This is my valentine to myself. And suddenly, I don't need chocolate quite so much.
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