Rolling eyes, mental games and dog walks... what?

One week down... only nine to go!

My first week of “Ten weeks to healthy in 2010” has come to an end. And a successful end at that. Just give me sec while I take the time to give myself a little pat on the back...! Oh and now... please join me as I role my eyes because (one) it’s only been a week and (two) my goal for week 1 was relatively simple... and so in the end I’m left feeling like I didn’t really accomplish all that much. But I’m learning and I’m moving forward into week 2 with some “adjustments”.

You’re either right with me (rolling your eyes) and agreeing that getting in 4 twenty-minute workouts in one week really isn’t that big of a deal OR you’re thinking that I’m being too hard on myself. To that I can only say that this kind of thing is different for everyone and I know that I need to challenge myself some more.

My inner struggle (and dialogue!)

While I may be rolling my eyes at my goal for week 1 – if I am completely honest with you, it wasn’t easy for me to actually do the workouts. Or maybe I should rephrase that and say that it wasn’t easy for me to start doing the workouts. Sure I worked some muscles that probably haven’t even been used in a couple months and sure I was really sore – everywhere – but I’m not talking about how physically demanding the exercise was.

I’m talking about the mental game that goes on in my head as I convince myself that –YES – this is what I want to do for the next 20 to 30 minutes. And of course the mental game that continues as I’m actually exercising – “come on Andrea... focus on this muscle... 15 more minutes... feel that jiggle... you hate that... this is why you’re doing this... 12 more minutes... come on... 5 more minutes... just a few more... you’re almost done...”.

I feel like one of those people who spends more time thinking about how busy they are than actually being busy. All the thinking and struggling going on – without me lifting a finger – is really quite exhausting! I’m convinced it’s making all those squats and lunges more difficult...

My dog-walk epiphany

One of the most repeated suggestions for people who are trying to lose weight, increase physical activity or simply have a more active lifestyle is to WALK more. I had to smile when I read the post-partum recommendation to go for short walks in the days and weeks following having a baby (to increase blood flow, encourage healing, and let’s not forget... to get out of the house!!!).

We have a dog. To be more specific - we have an Australian shepherd named Reuben. While he’s no longer a puppy and has lost some (a very negligible some) of his energy – he is a dog that needs to be walked – twice a day if possible. Needless to say, I walk (the dog), almost every day, twice a day for between 20 and 40 minutes each time. We walk as a family. We walk Brandon to work. We walk to-and-through the park. We walk after supper (there is nothing better to distract and calm two tired girls at the end of the day). I carry Meaghan a lot of the time. I push the two girls in our SUV double stroller (a chariot which I *heart*love*heart*). I carry one and push the other.... However it’s being done – it’s being done. And it must be burning some calories.

But that's not my point. So what is? Well... not only am I getting in some physical activity on these walks, it’s probably the times where I do my best thinking (or talking when I’m with B). So one day this week while I was walking (...and carrying Meaghan) I had an idea...

“I should promise myself a reward for sticking to the whole exercise thing”

I know... I know... the toning up and being healthier in general should be pretty good and all... but this girl needs a little extra motivation. I’m just like a kid who needs to be bribed with an allowance to clean her room on a regular basis! And since I’m doing all my exercising at home (and not spending any money on an expensive gym membership) I feel that it isn't completely ridiculous to consider the idea of a reward or an “allowance” that I only get if I follow through and complete the exercise goals that I set for myself each week or each month (I haven’t settled on a time frame yet).

Now I just need to decide what I want. What is something that would motivate me when I’m just not feeling it...? Dinner out at a nice restaurant? New shoes? A new microwave with a built in stove fan installed and all (don’t laugh... I really do want that!!)?

Something to think about... Maybe you have some ideas for me?

Now it’s time to set some goals for week 2

I think I’m going to keep my original goal from week one...

Complete at least 4 20-30 minute workouts

... and add...

Complete 2 yoga sessions


Limit cookies or other “dessert” type treats to one per day

(oh, that's right... I never mentioned how poorly I ate over the last week... another reason I was rolling my eyes when I sat down to start writing this post...sigh...)

So... Wish me luck!



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