Mission Impossible?

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!

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11 thoughts on “Mission Impossible?

  1. I once kept my alarm clock on top the refrigerator in the kitchen. I was single so there was no one to disturb when it went off. When I plodded down the hall to turn it off – I ate breakfast because I was already there.

    I think it is great that you are working on ways around your schedule. Is your lunch hour any type of possibility?

    You won’t be able to magically do this over night – but I suggest starting to look at what you are doing in the afternoon/evening when you get home – to see if you can shift some of what you do to other people in your house or to other parts of your week. The first thing that comes to my mind is cooking ahead on the weekends so that your cooking time is nil during the week.

    I don’t cook set dishes ahead – but I cook the parts ahead. So for me – things like cooking all meat the day I bring it home from the store (freezing it fully cooked) and freezing cooked beans and having flash frozen fruit and veggies save me a TON of cooking time each day.

    I started working HARD on shifting responsibility from me to the kids for their own stuff (when they hit 3rd grade). So that they write their own things on the calendar, fill out their own forms, set up carpools for youth group, athletic practices, etc. I absolutely kid you not about this. You would be surprised at how independent kids can be if they are taught.

    Yes, I still have to sign the checks for lunch orders – but I don’t fill out the form, get the envelope ready, get the other half the form (saying which day is hot and which is cold lunch) on the refrigerator, write the check or enter it in the check register – so just signing is quick.

    All of this takes a LONG time to shift.
    It is not an over night thing.
    And I can’t remember how old your kids are.

    At my house dishes have always been in low shelves so little ones can reach and can unload the dishwasher. they loved doing this. because it was ‘helping’.

    I have one kid in college and I realize that it took me nearly the whole 18 years to get him ready to take care of himself.

    He has a roommate that was never taught how to take care of himself – so he can clearly the see the benefits of being able to stand on his own two feet.

  2. I really liked this post because I sometimes have trouble getting up in the morning as well. I do use the tip about the alarm clock being on the other side of the room, and most of the time it works.
    I also lay out all my workout clothes the night before, so I don’t have to go digging for them in the morning. That usually helps me as well.
    You are on the right track. 🙂

  3. Oh girl I so identify with the first part of this post, especially. That’s how I was last week. Back in the old habits, and I felt like sh!t, all the time. Physically, mentally. I was breaking out with zits on places on my body that they never break out! Because of the bad food!! I think having those weeks are important to valuing the “lifestyle change” (yes, I hate that too) that we’ve made in our diets. It’s nice to know eating like we eat now isn’t just about keeping our asses smaller. We feel a lot better all the way around when the junk is out of our lives.

    On the morning thing. Ugh. Please share if you figure it out. I tried the put your alarm clock across the room thing. And I just got up, hit the snooze, and went back to bed. Pathetic, I know.

    I LOVE what you said about sleep being sacred. I never realized it before, but I feel the same way. I love to sleep. Always have. But really, I think it’s because I’m naturally a night person and can stay up late easily, but can’t get up early easily, no matter what time I go to bed. And, um, doesn’t being a MOM mean you are chronically sleep deprived anyway? There’s nothing wrong with wanting to be well rested. But, I agree with you–my attitude about sleep in general needs to shift.

    Really good stuff, Jill. Thank you for posting it today.

  4. Hi Jill, this was such a good post. I could so relate to your thought process, and trying to fit one more ‘good’ thing into a totally packed life. To be honest, I have never really understood how someone could be a mother AND work, or be a mother and go to college. I am such a weinie–when I was in my last year of college, I went into the benefits office and started crying–I couldn’t keep working full time AND do school, so they found me some scholarship money somewhere. So I am in awe of what you guys do.

    Do you read Roni or watch her videos? I think she talked about this in one of her videos. She talked about how she just started moving more, dancing around the house with ‘the toddler.’ Maybe that could work for you.

    And, well, I guess sleep is not sacred, but boy, it is darned close to it! Unless you are supermom (oh, I forgot Wonderwoman!) don’t sleep deprive yourself too much. I think there’s a lot of scientific evidence that sleep is important for us in a lot of ways, including lately I’ve seen it mentioned as being an important factor in weight loss!

  5. I can totally relate to the not getting up! The best way for me to wake up in the morning is to make plans with a reliable neighbor to walk. That way I feel like a jerk if I stand her up.

    FYI, my new year’s resolution one year was to get more sleep. The few times that I watch TV now it is off by 9pm and I’m upstairs by 9:30. I read and turn the light off around 10pm. I was so pleased with how this resolution turned out that I have kept it over several years now. Sometimes I even have the lights out by 9!

  6. OMG, I am sitting here with my mouth open because I literally….truly….honestly….have almost the EXACT same post written for, but not yet posted on, my blog!!!!!!!!! Do you happen to have a long-lost twin you dont know about?? I just might be your gal 😉

    For me, the hurdle to the morning routine isnt necessarily the sleep (although it’s a factor) it’s a phobia of running in the morning dark 😉 Not THE DARK…the MORNING dark. Call me crazy, but I can run at 9pm, just not 5am. Silly eh? But I have the same problem as you in that leaving workouts for night time just DOES NOT work. I think half the battle is just recognizing that fact…the other half comes when you find an alternate solution that you can commit to.

    Funny enough, I actually have gotten 2 mid-week runs done this week, both actually at night…but the difference was that I ran them on the treadmill in my GARAGE instead of outside. Somehow, mentally, it is do-able for me to drag myself to the garage…even when I think I’m too tired to run outside. Isnt that crazy how the mind works?

    But it’s a solution for me, at least for now. And you will find yours too 🙂

    So dont be surprised when you see a similar post on my blog one of these days….LOL!

    HUGS!!!!

  7. Good luck with the morning workouts!

    I DO think sleep is really important too, so I hope eventually your family demands get a little less overwhelming so you can go to bed early enough to make getting up easier–or get back the time to exercise at night.

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