D-day is finally here- the Ten in ’10 Healthy Challenge now begins! I’m absolutely thrilled with the response we’ve gotten to the challenge. It’s terrific that so many people are interested in making a positive, healthy change in their lives. I feel like we’re all in this together, and will support each other and keep each other motivated and excited to keep on track. If you’re new here and you’re not familiar with the details of this challenge, read up on this post and email me if you’d like to join in on the challenge- it’s not too late- you can begin whenever you’d like. Here’s a peek at the participant list (290+ people and growing, with 39 states and 11 countries represented)!
I actually started my healthy challenge yesterday, figuring that Friday will be a good day to weigh in… before the weekend & possible slip-ups happen. It was a good first day- I started off with an egg white omelette filled with sauteed vegetables. I even got in a workout at the gym- 30 minutes on the elliptical machine, did some strength exercises & ab crunches and then transitioned outside to do a bit of running and tossing the football with my family. It felt good to be moving again.
The holidays just killed me this year… too many cookies and too much wine & other indulgences. I feel much like a pudgy piglet, and I’m so ready for cleansing my body and getting thin and fit again. At the beginning of 2009, I entered a Biggest Loser challenge at my gym. I was motivated and driven to win, and I did. I kept the weight off and managed good workouts until we went on a long summer vacation, where happy hour is more fun to partake in than working out. I feel pretty cruddy about that slip, but of course I intend to make sure that things are different this year. It’s time that I think about my health and how I want to stay young and fit enough to live an active life with my family. I’d also like to feel better about myself… because when Momma feels fit and trim, Momma is in a much better mood and is more fun to be around.
I plan to write everything down. I like to chart my exercise on a calendar and then add up my exercise totals at the end of each week. For some reason that gives me incentive to try and out-do myself each week. As a result, my workouts continue to get better as the weeks pass. I’m planning menus in advance because there’s nothing worse than lunch or dinner rolling around and being starving without having something ready to eat. That’s a sure pantry/fridge-raiding disaster just waiting to happen. Everything that goes into my mouth will be written down in a food journal.
I had a conversation with my neighbor the other day- he’s a tall, very thin and fit guy who recently lost 35 pounds. He says he feels fantastic. I asked him how he is managing to keep it off. His explanation was that there are 35 pounds that he doesn’t have to feed anymore, so he’s able to eat smaller portions. I like that way of looking at things- it’s just a matter of getting used to the smaller portions, I guess.
Fit tip of the week: Ab crunches done on a stability ball are 50% more effective than doing them on the floor.
Diet tip of the week: A can of soda contains 12 teaspoons of sugar- more than a candy bar. Gross.
Health tip of the week: Take advantage of your local park or walking trail and you may add years to your life. A recent study of over 3,000 older adults found that those with the most access to nature were more likely to add 5 years to their lifespans. Nature acts as a buffer against life’s stressful events. (Health, 2008)
Here are my goals- which I intend to extend beyond the 10 week challenge:
*lose weight- goal of 15-20 lbs. in 10 weeks, and then more after that.
*exercise 6 days/wk. trying to get in at least 1 to 1 ½ hours per day, when possible
*work up to at least 150 ab crunches & strength/arm training each day
*drink a lot more water
*eat meals with higher protein + lots of veggies
*not do any mindless emotional eating & don’t eat in front of the computer
*prepare healthier meals for my family
*When recipe testing, I’ll give myself permission to have a small taste for testing purposes only. No scarfing down the goods!
*work on improving my sleeping habits
*train for 5K & 10K too
Rules for myself- I will:
*make myself work out- even when I don’t want to
*be allowed one night/wk where I can drink two glasses of wine
*focus on eating smaller portions
*start my day w/ something filling: egg white omelette or oatmeal
*make a cup of tea when I feel like munching
*sit down to eat my meals- relax & enjoy
*only weigh myself on Friday mornings (put scale away during the week)
*visit Farmer’s Markets as much as possible to look for fresh fruits/veg
*do less baking, and the baking that I do will mostly focus on whole grains
*allow myself to enjoy my upcoming vacation, making sure that I watch my intake of the avoidance foods below & exercising like crazy to compensate.
Foods to avoid:
*white flour/white rice/white potato/white pasta
*excessive cheese intake
I’ll continue to post healthy updates on Saturdays only- where I’ll share links to recipes I’ve tried, healthy tips and personal experiences. During the week, I’ll post as usual on Mondays and Thursdays- a mix of healthy recipes and my usual goodies.
GOOD LUCK EVERYONE… WE CAN DO THIS