Monday, August 25, 2008

Where did my good habits go?

I know I've read the stat somewhere...that it takes 6-8 weeks (maybe more?) for a change in behavior to become a habit.

Whether it's 6, 8, or even 52 weeks, I know that for well over a year--possibly even two years--I've been eating breakfast. Yet on my last hiatus, eating breakfast was one of the first healthy habits I dropped.

Getting back into it has been tough. (Example: today's breakfast was a cup of skim milk and a 100-calorie Lorna Doone packet). As much as I love food, I am just not into breakfast. Eggs, toast, pancakes, yogurt...none of them appeal to me. When I was training regularly with Ms. A, I had to have breakfast. There was no way around it. If I didn't eat, I was going to pass out from the tough workouts she put me through.

So without her, both my workouts and runs to the breakfast table have been shamefully diminished. The good news is I'm tackling this breakfast thing head on this week. Goal is to do better every day than Lorna Doones and milk.

Even if that means low-fat PB & J sandwiches. (Hey, no one said breakfast actually had to BE breakfast, right?)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Picking myself up and dusting myself off...

One thing I've learned about myself over the past couple of months.

I can talk a really good game. I can't always follow through.

See my last post for proof. A month ago, I was telling myself to get back on track. To stop obsessing, to get myself going.

Here I am, weeks later, still saying the same thing. Opening the cupboard and feeling embarrassed about all the junk I've bought (and yes, eaten). Standing on the scale and berating myself for not stopping the downslide sooner. (In the past two months, I have gained almost six pounds. Yes, two vacations were tossed into that mix--one to Europe and one to Las Vegas, but I've been home for a while. No reason not to start up with the healthy habits again!)

Two years ago, I started trying to lose weight. The goal? Get myself in better shape and at a healthy weight to have a baby. I wanted to reach that before my 30th birthday.

My 30th birthday was three weeks ago. And not only was I not at my goal weight, I had turned my back on my healthy habits.

Despite all the positive, good things I was telling myself, I looked at the number on the scale and saw that no matter how much work I was putting in, it wasn't dropping. So I stopped putting the work in.

And surprise, surprise. If you stop exercising and you start eating packets of raw cookie dough, your weight will creep up again.

You don't get credit for the hard work you did in the past. Your body takes what you're doing in the present and runs with it.

So, two months of no effort resulted in a few gained pounds. My new clothes looked snugger and snugger. The pretty sleeveless dress I bought for my 30th birthday--the one so many sizes smaller than what I was two years ago--was actually, GASP--tighter on the big day. (Note to self: Thank heavens for Spanx!)

And yet even days after coming home from my 30th birthday trip, I couldn't make myself get back to the gym (It didn't help that Ms. A was on maternity leave and there was no one to push me.) I couldn't stop eating out. (And while eating out, I didn't exactly go for the healthy options.) I kept telling myself, "What's the point in working? The work wasn't paying off."

And viola, a few pounds smacked me back to reality.

Despite all the blogs I've written about not quitting, I did quit. I only thank heaven that I caught myself before a few pounds turned into 10 or 20, or God forbid, put me back at my starting weight.

So it's back to the drawing board. Back to the workouts, back to the journaling, back to the healthy eating. And back to blogging. It keeps me accountable. It gives me an outlet. It reminds me I am not alone.