My current fall off the wagon has reminded me of what life used to be like when I was Fat Jill, and I am reminded of how miserable I was, both emotionally and physically. I don’t want to feel like that anymore (bloated, sluggish, self-esteem in the toilet) so I am taking steps to get my groove back. I have decreased the crap and increased my fruit and veggie intake which has helped significantly. I have to realize once and for all that I cannot eat junk all the time without suffering the consequences. Once in a while I can indulge, but all day every day – not so much. Also, on Sunday night I sat down with my calendar and planned out which days I would walk and when – Monday evening, Tuesday evening, and Wednesday morning with a break on Thursday and Friday, and a walk on Saturday mid-morning.
I am 0 for 3 so far this week.
My evenings are so busy from the time I get home from work until bedtime that trying to fit in a work out becomes stressful. I began to resent all the things I have to do in the evenings (and the people I do them for) because there is just no *me* time to be had. I was feeling bad about this until I realized that I wouldn’t feel so resentful if I didn’t have to worry about squeezing in a work out. So I made the decision to NOT work out after work. I can devote my evenings to my family and relax and NOT feel like a failure for not being Supermom. I’ll be the first to admit that, no, I can’t do it all (at least not from 4-10pm) and that’s okay.
So when will I work out? *sigh* you guessed it – early in the morning. I decided that early mornings are going to be the most reliable time for me to exercise, but getting up early to do it is going to take some work, because typically I will hit the snooze button 3 or 4 times, and even then I wait until the very last possible minute to get up (I even figured out that I can stay in bed 10 minutes longer if I don’t wash and dry my hair – pathetic but true). Getting out of a warm bed is almost painful for me, but if I want a healthy, strong body then I am going to have to sacrifice a few minutes of sleep in order to get it.
Obviously just setting my alarm and having good intentions isn’t going to get the job done – I am going to have to use a little tough love and channel my inner Drill Sergeant. I believe knowledge is power so I powered up my computer and did a little web search on how to wake up early in the morning. Turns out there are a lot of articles* with tips and tricks to getting out of bed early, some of them very useful (put your alarm clock far from your bed) and some of them a little wacky (put your alarm clock in a safe – by the time you think of the combination to unlock the safe, you’ll already be awake!). The one I liked the best was to have a reward waiting for you, like having a low fat latte after your work out or a bubble bath. Another one I really need to embrace is believing that exercise is important enough to get up for, that I am important enough to get up for. I don’t just mean thinking that exercise is important, I have to believe that it is essential to living the kind of life I envision for myself. And it is.
I think that something else I need to change is my view of sleep. I don’t know where it came from but I have this belief that sleep is almost…sacred. Thou shalt not wake a sleeping person, thou shalt never ever disturb someone’s nap, thou shall tip-toe and be as quiet as humanly possible if someone is sleeping nearby. I even get a little edgy if the hubs wants to talk at bed time because that means I may not get my 7 hours of sleep. I have put sleep on a pedestal and anyone or anything that stands between me and my blessed slumber is treading on dangerous ground! At the end of my life though, will I remember how much I slept or will I remember the meaningful talks I had with my husband, or the awesome feeling of finishing a run before dawn?
For those of you who have been reading for awhile, you know my aversion to the term lifestyle change…but I think I understand what that term really means. It has nothing to do with food; it has to do with the actions I take everyday to live a healthier, fitter life. So as much as I hate to admit it, I do need a lifestyle change (you have no idea how much I hated typing those words!), and I am learning to make that change even if I have to do it one baby step at a time, and it may take me until I’m 80 to do it (*grins at Debby*), but at least I am going to try.
*I failed to record where I found all of these great tips, so I can’t give anyone credit for them. If you Google “how to wake up early” you will most likely find the same articles I found and would then know who to attribute each tip to. And if you are the author of one of those articles, please accept my apologies for being an inept researcher!