I like having goals. I view goals as the roadmap to help me get to my destination. Of course, when taking a trip we sometimes need to veer off course a little which is fine. If we have a map we can always adjust and figure out a way to get back on track. Goals are the map that help you get back on track.
My biggest goal for 2012 is to try and live a healthier lifestyle. What exactly is a “healthier lifestyle”? When I think about my goals I try to break them down and really identify what it means to me so that I can identify success. Here is what a healthier lifestyle looks like to me, it may look different to you
- Regular exercise
- Healthier food choices
- Taking care of ongoing health issues
- Less work, more play
Once I identified what a healthy lifestyle looked like to me I sat down and wrote out what was preventing me from already leading a healthy lifestyle. The very first one that I tackled was regular exercise since I felt that would resolve some of my other issues. Here is what prevents me from exercising regularly.
Lack of time
I, like many other women, am really busy. Here’s a sample of what I try to squeeze into a typical day.
Daily commute of 1 – 1.5 hours
9 – 10 hours at work
Errands/running of kids
Cooking and housework
Spending time with family
Notice – there is no exercise listed. I never made it a priority because all those other things took precedence. Exercise takes time, there is no way around it.
Lack of motivation
Difficulty getting to the gym
Discomfort from to many people seeing me vulnerable (have you ever tried swimming laps at the YMCA while the swim team was practicing?)
Discomfort resulting from exercise
Once I identified the list of excuses that was preventing me from exercising I started cutting them down. I find that excuses, no matter how legitimate, are the shield that keeps us from admitting the true reason we don’t do something. Sometimes it’s fear, sometimes it’s laziness. It doesn’t really matter what it is. If I can strip away all the noise I’m just left with myself and I really hate having to admit that the only reason I don’t exercise is because I’m to lazy.
Here are the steps I’ve taken to commit to exercising
-Joined a new gym. I actually have access to two other gyms but they weren’t meeting my needs. I found a new gym that:
- I passed every day on my way to work – couldn’t use the inconvenient excuse
- Has a movie room. How cool is that?? This gym actually has a movie theater with bikes, treadmills and elipticals instead of seats. No commercials and it’s actually motivated me to stay longer so that I can see the end of the movie. Boredom – solved
- Has a lap pool. I love swimming, even though I’m not very good. This gym has a small lap pool that isn’t very busy and is tucked out of the way so no one sees you unless they are trying to swim. Whereas the lap pool at the Y is in an area that is connected to the family swim area, the swim team practices at and EVERYONE who is at the Y can see you. Vulnerability – taken care of
-Decided that my health was the motivation that I needed. I want to be able to keep up with my husband and kids while vacationing, I don’t want to be in pain all the time, I don’t want to take blood pressure medicine, I want to be able to chase my grandkids around. Motivation - check
-Physical discomfort, this has actually been the hardest for me. Any time muscles are used that have been dormant for a while there is discomfort that goes along with it. The past few weeks have been pretty hard on the body. I’m struggling to work through some knee issues but I’m going to keep plugging along. I’ve been using Epsom salt baths, heating pads, ice packs and ibuprofen to work through the aches and pains.
-Time. The real crux of the issue. If I try working at night there is a whole new host of excuses that crop up. When I look at my day the best time for me to exercise is early morning. My body clock is set to wake up at 5am. Most days I would write or putz around the house. I’ve committed to using that time to work out. I pack my gym bag the night before, roll out of bed and go to the gym without showering. After working out I shower and get ready at the gym making it to work by 7:30 – 8am.
The result has been pretty good so far. As I stated I’m still working through some physical issues but I’m hoping those will go away soon. Here are my healthy lifestyle goals for the week:
- Work out with personal trainer one time
- Make it to the gym four times
- Log my food for the week
As you can see these aren’t outrageous goals but ones that I’ll feel pretty good about if I’m successful.
What are your goals for the week?