Tuesday, June 21, 2016

5 weeks of healthy habits

I am starting my 5th week of intentional healthy habits. In some ways it feels like it has been a very long road. While in other ways it feels like I just started the process. I know that I am healthier and stronger but really wish I was seeing more of a physical change. I am however down 5 pounds and a whole inch off of my hips! I am not going to complain about that!

For those who have not been following along on my journey (What?! Where have you been?) I had three goals. First was to work on my sleep patterns, secondly I wanted to eat healthier, and thirdly I wanted to increase my exercise routine.

I am happy to say that my sleep patterns are now set in stone and going well. I am tempted at times to stay up late in an attempt to spend time with my husband.  I however know that if I stay up late one night I will sleep late the next day and it is a slippery slope for me.

My eating has been going well but I am really tired of tracking my daily calories. It is tedious. I however need some way to monitor my daily intake. I tend to either eat way too little or way too much if left to my own devices. I have been tracking my calories in an attempt to hit the sweet spot of 1,200 to 1,500 calories.

Exercise has been going well and I have been hitting my 12,000 steps a day every day! Unfortunately that has taken me two hours a day out of the house walking on the local trails. While I love walking on the trails it has started to get difficult to fit into my schedule. I have been walking in the evenings when it is slightly cooler but that means I am either missing dinner or eating way to late and feeling light headed and shaky. I have the option of going out early in the mornings but I am holding that card as a last choice. I am not a morning person at all! Getting up early does not appeal to me in the least.

Now that I am starting my 5th week of intentional healthy habits I am making yet more changes to my goals. The initial stages of eating healthy and exercising are over and I am ready to ramp up my efforts. After reading an article in Running World I have decided to set my goals for three week periods. the thought process is that it takes 3 weeks for your body to no longer find a challenge in a new activity. With that in mind you need to change up your routine at least every three weeks in order to continue to challenge your system.

So what are my goals for the next three weeks?

1. Maintain my sleep patterns. I feel it is very important that I get enough rest each night. Without the proper amount of sleep I am useless and more likely to crumble and purchase fast food while skipping my exercise routine.

2. Eating healthy of course. I would like to try something new for the next three weeks. After doing some reading and poking around the internet I have decided to use a version of the 21 Day Fix. I am not purchasing the program nor have I even read the book (although I will be checking to see if they have it in the library). I however have found some interesting printables online that I think could be beneficial. The process is pretty simple and relies on portion control and exercise. You are allowed a certain amount of veggies, fruits, protein, seeds/nuts, etc each day based on your calorie range. As you eat your meals you check off a block under the appropriate category. When you are out of squares to check you are done eating out of that category for the day.  For a more in depth look at he program you can check out this pin which has tons of information. My goal is to check off the foods on the checklist each day instead of tracking them on the tracking software. I am hoping that this will make my calorie tracking simpler to complete throughout the day.

3. Exercise is a must. I would like to change things up in this area as well. My goal is to increase my intensity while decreasing my time spent exercising. I have turned my nightly five mile hikes into two mile runs. I will be working my way up to running a 5k very soon. I am also about to start increasing my strength training as well. I have made the questionable decision to begin crossfit workouts. I am slightly terrified but excited to give it a try. My friend recommended the location and was able to score me a $100 gift card towards my first month's membership. Tomorrow is my first workout! Hopefully they do not kill me in the process.

I am excited to see what the next three weeks has to offer! What healthy habits are you working on?

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