Goals

January Goal Review

Here were my goals for the month of January.  I thought I would look back on them and see how I did.  This will give me a chance to reflect on my goals and make new ones for the month.

  • Make a grocery list every Friday. I haven’t necessarily been doing this on Friday, but I have been doing it.  I have a new grocery list for every week.
  • Prepare meals for the week every Sunday.  I’ve been doing this too!  it has been awesome.  We haven’t eaten out because I have been “too tired” to cook or “have had a bad day.”  I’ve been experimenting with different things, such as freezer crock pot meals and casseroles to put in the refrigerator.

Exercising

  • Start Jillian Michael’s Body Revolution DONE!!  Two weeks in baby!  About to start on workouts three and four.
  • Use the Cto5K program three times per week (MWF) This one I haven’t done because it has been either f’in cold or snowy outside.  I don’t have a gym membership.  We were going to get one, but we are actively trying to decide what is best.  This may have to wait until late February or March.

Tracking

  • Take 5 minutes after every meal to log food Been doing this too.  It’s been great.  Now if I could just see the weight loss I’m supposed to.
  • Log exercise right after my workout DONE and DONE!

Sleeping

  • Go to bed by 9pm on weeknights, be sleeping between 10-10:30pm So glad to say I’ve been doing this too.  When it gets late in the day (like 8 or so) I get tired, and sometimes I go to sleep before 10.
  • Find a new book to read Obviously I’ve found several.  And I have several more where those came from.
  • Write in my Shaun T journal Check!!  I LOVE my Shaun T journal.  It’s amazing, and I have been writing off every night.

Mind/Body

  • Stretch every Sunday  Yeah, not so much.  I do need to do this though.
  • Find a good meditation book I don’t think I’m going to do this one.  I looked at meditation books, and I didn’t find anything I liked.  My Shaun T journal also gives me a weekly quote to think about, which seems to be meditation enough for me at the moment.
  • Blog three times per week  Nope 😦  This is something I need to do as well.  I really enjoy blogging, and I need to be better about writing and scheduling posts.

February’s goals to come!!

How are you doing on your goals so far?

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Workout

Body Revolution Week 1

So I’m back to working out with Jillian.  To be honest, I have really missed her.  Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE Shaun T, but Jillian is my girl.  Here’s a run down of Body Revolution if you’re not familiar with Jillian’s program.

There are 3 phases.  Each phase has five workouts: 2 front of the body workouts, 2 back of the body workouts, and a cardio workout.  Every week you do a front of the body workout, a back of the body workout, cardio and repeat.  Then you have a day of rest.  You do the same workouts for 2 weeks then progress to the next level.

Here’s an example of phase 1:

Week 1: Workout 1 (front), workout 2 (back), cardio, Workout 1 (front), workout 2 (back), cardio

Week 2: Workout 1 (front), workout 2 (back), cardio, Workout 1 (front), workout 2 (back), cardio

Week 3: Workout 3 (front), workout 4 (back), cardio, Workout 3 (front), workout 4 (back), cardio

Week 4: Workout 3 (front), workout 4 (back), cardio, Workout 3 (front), workout 4 (back), cardio

Each two weeks, the workouts get harder.  This allows you to gradually increase intensity.  It also prevents your body from becoming used to the workout.  I find that workouts 1 and 2 are easier for me now than the first time I did (most of) this program. Not to say it’s easy, but I can keep up.  I’m thinking this next week I’m going to add weights.

For my Saturday cardio, I went to my first Zumba class instead of doing the Jillian DVD.  It was SO MUCH FUN!!  I do love to dance, so this was right up my ally.  A friend of ours is an instructor and does the class for free.  She does such a good job and is so laid back.  It makes the class enjoyable.  I’m definitely going back.

All in all, I’m very happy with my workout routine.  We will see how I feel next week!!  What’s ypur favorite workout routine?

Books

Burn

Okay, so here is the second book I have read this year!  I finished it a week or so ago, but I’m just now getting around to writing the review.  It’s called Burn, and it is the last book in the Breathless trilogy.  I have read the other books in the series, but I read them last year so I have not written any reviews.

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So the series is based on three best friends, and each book focuses on a specific friend.  This one is the final one in the series and focuses on Ash.  Essentially Ash finds the love of his life, tries to get her to understand that he is the love of her life.  This is a Fifty Shades of Grey-esque book, so there is a lot of sub/dom stuff and a lot of sex scenes.

Overall, it was entertaining.  I found the first book to the the best.  All of the books sort of followed the same plot – boy loves girl, boy woos girl, boy and girl have hot sex and fall in love, something happens that could break them up, girl gets hurt, boy and girl get back together.

I’m not sure why I like these Fifty Shades of Grey-esque books.  I think it’s the romantic ideal that you could be swept off of your feet and the completely and totally taken care of with more money than you know what to do with.  Ash sees this woman, was immediately smitten, and followed her until she finally agreed to date him.  Once she found out he was buying her paintings and she wasn’t actually supporting herself like she thought, she leaves, then her life is put in jeopardy and she realizes she is actually in love with Ash.

This is a good, fun, no thinking book to read.  What’s your guilty pleasure book to read?

Books

Book Review: The Fault in our Stars

Here is a fact about me: I love to read.  Want a second fact?  I don’t do it nearly as often as I want to.  I have made it one of my resolutions to spend at least 30 minutes per night reading a book of my choosing.  Part of the “problem” with me reading is that, if I find a good book, I have a hard time putting it down.

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That’s what happened with this book.  I read it in two days.  I have been looking at this book for a while, but I didn’t purchase it until the other day.  It was worth the wait, and I am kicking myself for not reading it earlier.  I laughed (out loud).   I cried. Both of these things are pretty remarkable for me.  I have been reading ever since I was 3, and very few books have ever made me show outward emotion.  What continues to baffle me is that a book, whose primary audience is teenagers, is so full of meaning about love, life, and death.

Before I begin my “insightful” part of this review, I guess I should tell you what the book is about.  The narrator is Hazel Grace Lexington.  She was diagnosed with Thyroid cancer at 13, and currently has cancer colonies in her lungs which requires her to have oxygen all of the time.  While attending a cancer support group, she meets Augustus Waters and so begins their story of two teenagers who fall in love, and who also happen to have cancer.

What I love about this book is, while the characters are diagnosed with cancer, they are not defined by their cancer.  They are people, just people, dealing with life.   Hazel and Augustus are relatable, even though they are teenagers (and I am an adult).  Also, the book is full of metaphors and meaning.  The best way to explain this is explaining the book title itself.  The title, from what I understand, comes from a line in Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, “The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars / but in ourselves, that we are the underlings.”  The line is meant to refer to the fact that our destiny is not pre-determined, that we, as people, make decisions that influence our fate.  Or, that is what it has been deconstructed and overused to mean.  However, the book title implies that sometimes people are the victim of their fate.  As an aside, I don’t like using the term victim as it implies weakness.  Moving on, Hazel and Augustus’ decisions did not have any impact on their cancer diagnoses.  Therefore, the is fault in the universe.   The universe is an inherently unjust place (kids have cancer, bad things happen to good people, etc.).  The title is a nod to that fact or reality.

Another concept I particularly enjoy is this idea of “living a heroic life” or leaving an impact.  At one point, Hazel refers to herself as a grenade.  I think this is an interesting metaphor for life.  We are all grenades.  And, when we die, the aftermath will often cause pain and suffering to those around us, at least for a little while.  The depth of pain depends on how close that person is to you or the blast.  Many people, including Hazel, try to increase the distance between them (as the grenade) and the people that will be affected.  However, the reality is that people will still be affected, there will still be damage, no matter how hard we may try to minimize the damage.  Therefore, it begs the question what constitutes a life well lived.  Augustus believes that he has to die a “heroic” death or his life would not matter.  Hazel argues that he matters to her, and he matters to others, and that constitutes his life having meaning.  This kind of goes back to the idea that we all leave imprints in the world, and, no matter how big or small, our impacts have a farther outreach than we could ever know.  I think of this a lot as I work with my clients and how what they learn or take away in session with me will impact his/her relationship with his/her spouse, children, parents, friends, etc.  And, I will never know how far my influence spreads.

Finally (and I only end here because this review needs to end at some point) is the idea of control.  You see this most often in Augustus, who will put a cigarette in his mouth but refuses to light it as he will put the thing that can kill him in his mouth, but he will not allow it to kill him.  This could be a bigger metaphor to cancer (yes he has cancer, but he will not let him get in the way of living his life).  This is about separating what you can control from what you cannot control (like what the Serenity prayer says).  Too often I see people allow things in their life that cause some form of pain.  Whereas, if the person created some distance, s/he would not allow circumstances to affect the way s/he is living life.  This kind of goes back to “the fault in our stars argument.”  Yes, people are dealt poor hands and the universe isn’t fair, but the way you deal with what is given to you determines the quality of life you will have.   Another line from the book is something along the lines of “the mark that humans leave are often scars”  as well as another line that says, “You don’t get to choose if you get hurt in this world, old man, but you do have some say in who does the hurting.”  Again, we are all going to leave marks on the world, and the only thing you get to chose is what kind of life you will lead.

 

Goals

January Week 1 Goals

I have my yearly goals.  Now, I am going to manage my monthly goals that will keep me on track.  I will review them weekly to determine whether I am on track or not.

Eating/Cooking

  • Make a grocery list every Friday.
  • Prepare meals for the week every Sunday.  I recently received Rachel Ray’s Week in a Day cookbook.  I will be pulling a lot of my recipes from there to get a good start.

Exercising

  • Start Jillian Michael’s Body Revolution
  • Use the Cto5K program three times per week (MWF)

Tracking

  • Take 5 minutes after every meal to log food
  • Log exercise right after my workout

Sleeping

  • Go to bed by 9pm on weeknights, be sleeping between 10-10:30pm
  • Find a new book to read
  • Write in my Shaun T journal

Mind/Body

  • Stretch every Sunday
  • Find a good meditation book
  • Blog three times per week
Goals

New Year’s Resolution

I was thinking about my new year’s fitness resolutions for 2014.  At the end of the year, I fell off the wagon.  Now, I want to get back on.  For Christmas, I got a fitbit, which I will feel much more comfortable wearing as opposed to the wristband.  I also got running pants to wear in the cold and new running shoes.  I read this article from My Fitness Pal blog and was even more inspired to do fitness resolutions, so here they are, categorized.

Eating/Cooking

  • Take 1-2 minutes after every meal to log what I eat.  This becomes complicated when I cook because, obviously, there isn’t something already in the database.  Therefore, when I plan my meals I will log the recipes every Sunday so I can log my meals for the week.
  • Spend every Friday afternoon planning meals and writing a grocery list for the following week.
  • Spend every Sunday cooking for the week to save time and not “get tired” and fall back on fast food.
  • Make every Monday meatless Monday
  • Limit fast food to a minimum of once per week.
  • Go out to dinner at a restaurant once per week.

Exercising

  • Workout with a friend twice per week
  • Plan my workouts in advance (weekly)
  • Run at least three times per week
  • Workout at least 5 times per week for 30 minutes

Tracking

  • Log food and exercise five times per week
  • Take 5 minutes after every meal to log food
  • Log exercise right after my workout

Sleeping

  • Go to bed by 9pm on weeknights, be sleeping between 10-10:30pm
  • Read for at least 30 minutes per night
  • Write in my journal every night

Mind/Body

  • Stretch every Sunday
  • Learn Italian
  • Walk the dog twice per week
  • Do a 5-10 minute meditation every morning
  • Blog three times per week

Those are my goals for the year, and this is how I am going to work on me.  If I do those, then I should be getting closer to where I want to be weight wise.  It’s learning to start making healthy choices and getting into healthy habits.  If I can get a routine where I am cooking more, relying on eating out less, tracking what is going in and out of my body, and exercising regularly….then I can get to where I want to be.

Here’s to a happy and health 2014!!!