No Year’s Resolutions

It's the obligatory new years post! I've decided not to set any Big Goals this year just yet. I want to slow down and get the Little Things right. 2008 was often shambolic and I know I can do things better – less panic, less grumbling on the couch, less abandoning of healthy habits when life gets busy! So instead of grand goals I came up with three basic daily things I must do:

2009 Minimum Standards Agreement!

  1. Write down what I eat
  2. Exercise for a minimum of 20 minutes
  3. 10.30 PM Internet curfew!

The first one is straightforward – I have to pay attention to what I eat. All the bloody time. Borrrring. But after two weeks of reviving my daily paper diary, I feel so chilled about food again. The Zombie Eating has stopped simply because I'm paying attention. Why did I ever stop doing this? It's not that difficult! (Thanks Pamela for inspiring this one 🙂

The exercise one – I know 20 minutes doesn't sound like much to you hardcore dames out there, but last year I kept going from one extreme to another. I'd do a 16 miler for my Moonwalk training then do nowt for a week. Even if it's just twenty minutes of Pilates or a quick jaunt around the village, I need to set a minimum. How can I say this without sounding like a new age wanker? It's not about burning calories, it's about taking a little chunk of time each day to focus on my body. Otherwise I just tend to live in my head (and on the couch) with my To Do list and not take very good care of myself. Things always seem easier to deal with if you get off your butt and get some endorphins buzzing!

And finally the internet curfew. I didn't realise how badly I needed this until we moved house in November and had no internet connection for three weeks. Suddenly I became incredibly productive and well rested! I called friends, I went for walks, I did my stinking tax return, I read books and newspapers.

So much of last year's angst could have been prevented if I'd just turned off the bloody computer. This was my weekday evening far too often, plonked in front of the laptop: Farrrrk I'm busy. What day is it. Crap, I gotta write that thing for tomorrow. Crap, look at all these emails. I better answer some before bed so they don't think I'm a jerk. Hmmm, wonder what's happening on Twitter? Crap, I haven't blogged for a week. LOL at that LOLcat. Crap, I gotta write that thing for tomorrow.

Next thing it would be 1AM. I hadn't washed my hair or packed my gym bag or prepped my brekkie and lunch for the next day. I'd go to bed, lay awake for another hour panicking about all the things I hadn't done. Then I'd oversleep, wake up swearing, make a hasty PB sandwich, race to work with odd socks and one mascara-ed eye, eat my PB sandwich at 10AM without even tasting it, too often leading to a a whole day of dodgy choices, and too often skipping exercise coz I had to write that thing for tomorrow which was now overdue.

So! By setting the Internet Curfew, I've had to get my arse organised. What's the real priority? What can wait until tomorrow? Have I done my minimum exercise yet? Have I had a SHOWER? Etc etc etc. 

Hopefully setting a cutoff time means I can read some books and get some bloody sleep and be 63.5% more pleasant company of a morning. Thank you Trish for the curfew idea.

And now I am going to have to end this entry abruptly otherwise I will be in violation of my own curfew. I don't want to have to ground myself.

ETA: ARRGH just hit post, IT'S 11.51 PM! I totally failed on the curfew today. Okay. Tomorrow, for sure.

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34 thoughts on “No Year’s Resolutions

  1. These are the best resolutions I’ve seen this year. Simple and to the point. I like the 20 minute minimum and am going to adopt it for myself.

    The food log — no matter what — is a good one for me too, because I have a tendency to say, “Ok, so I already blew it, so I’ll start logging tomorrow,” which means that the rest of today will be a total loss.

    I’m sure you won’t see this until tomorrow because you’re in bed, right?

  2. I started exercising Every Day No Matter What about 3 weeks ago and it’s made a huge difference in my mood, which makes a huge difference to what I eat. I really like how you’ve put it – 20 minutes of paying attention to my body. Great stuff!

  3. Love your resolutions. I just started doing Weight Watchers and have been writing my food down to make sure I stay within my daily points. But what an eye opener it has been, and makes me more conscious of what goes in my mouth. Yes, that “one little taste of a lemon bar” at work DOES count, LOL! I need an internet curfew too, but don’t have the courage to attempt that just yet. Just discovered you, lovin’ your blog, and hoping to buy your book here in America.

  4. I had quiet chuckle to myself about this post. I too am a slave to the internet – I am so absorbed with reading about other people’s lives sometimes that I forget that I have my own to live. I too have looked at the clock realised that it is very late and have to get to bed promising myself I will make lunch in the morning – but never do – so end up buying crap at work cafe. What did I do before net was invented!

  5. Rule #3 about the internet curfew is a great one. I have been trying to be more diligent about going to bed at a certain time which means getting off the computer. When I do it, I feel better and have more energy to get my exercising done, when I don’t, I pay for it.
    Oh Internet, why must you be such a fantastic time waster?

  6. I totally agree with you about writing down everything you eat. I’ve started doing that and it’s amazing how much more aware — and appreciative! — I am of everything I put in my mouth. When I’m conscious about what I’m eating, I consciously make better food choices. So far I’ve been eating really well and haven’t succumbed to any binging impulses. Here’s hoping that continues.

    Also hear you about the 20 minutes of daily exercise. I’ve been trying to get back into doing yoga on a semi-daily basis. It’s amazing how much better I feel — and how much more ENERGY I have — when I take the time to do it. But to take the time, I have to find the time, and that’s where it gets hard…

  7. @Jen – You’re right I didn’t see the comment til tomorrow! Unfortunately it wasn’t coz I was tucked up in bed but rather Twittering mournfully about my laundered iPhone. But baby steps, right. Tonight I’m gonna make the curfew!

    Hi folks – thanks for the comments!

  8. funnily enough this is exactly what I’ve decided to do too. My life sometimes slips away from me because I’m too caught up with ‘stuff’ on the internet. None of the stuff is impoertant or productive, so I need to limit it so that I do the stuff in my life that IS important and productive. I feel better when I’m in control so why oh why do I let it all slip away in an internet daze?

  9. Bizzare, I have very similar resolutions… 30 minutes of exercise and blog everyday, plan my food at least the day before and stick to it as closely as possible.

    We’ll see how it goes.

  10. the curfew is definitely one for me too- I was doing that before Christmas but being on holiday and flying to the USA has got me back into bad ways. For me it is not just internet, but basically a 10.30 bedtime, so that I read for a bit but will be asleep by around 11 pm. If I am not careful I end up watching TV (generally something silly like a CSI rerun…) till midnight, then check the internet for a bit, and feel like death at 06.45 next day- and bang goes my workout

  11. I think I need to set myself some minimum standards, definitely one about the number of times I can eat out in a week! The internet one sounds like a really good idea too.

  12. Great resolutions. I am copying the write everything down and the 20 minutes exercise ones to add to my packed lunch resolution. I have gone through phases of writing it all down before but it usually falls by the wayside (when I decide I don’t fancy writing down all the bad stuff!). Good luck!

  13. Hi. Great post.
    I have received my book and am now on page 211. Off now to read it with my salad for lunch. P.S. I love Audrey Hepburn toooooooooooooo

  14. Sounds like good goals to me! I write what food I eat down and we got a dog in October so I walk alot more so thats helping with me and exercise!

    Good luck with the goals!

  15. This sounds like a great plan! I’ve been totally allergic to logging my food lately, but it seems to be due to a self-destructive desire to zombie-eat! I’m sure that’s a whole bag of emotions for another day, but thanks for the inspiration to create a Minimum Standards Agreement! :o)

  16. Delurking to comment for the first time. 🙂

    Oh, I need that internet curfew myself. And a limit on dorking on the internet at work somedays (like today). Good luck! Sounds very reasonable.

  17. I could do with a time lock on my laptop!!! Like many other commenters, I waste too much time on the internet, but it’s funnnnnn!!! 😉

  18. The internet curfew is a very good idea – I would adopt it if I thought I could stick to it! This year I’ve kept finding myself still at work after midnight or frantically NaBloPoMoing at 11.50. It is silly.

    On which note, I’m off to bed!

  19. Yep, I have the internet curfew too. I’m allowed 30 minutes when I get home from work. Period. Otherwise, I don’t get in my P.M. workout, don’t make sure the kids get their chores done, don’t do laundry, don’t prep for the next day, nothing… next thing I know it’s 2 a.m. and… well basically everything you wrote.

    So excellent, excellent resolutions!

  20. I am so agreeing with the internet curfew thing (as she types this when she should be doing Naturopathy papers and not piss arsing around reading blogs!!)

  21. SUP!

    I’ve got a resolution thing about turning the telly off when I’m not watching a programme I actually want to see. I’ve got so much done on 09.

    Write it down, write it down. I almost stopped bothering then I read your post.

  22. Heyyy!

    Yet again, Shauna, you are speaking my language. I have kept a food journal since 5th January – and it’s VERY difficult to keep (but not impossible) for that very reason – to stop the mindless eating. It’s amazing what slips through the net when it’s not logged!!

    I am laptop-less right now and last week had less than 20 mins per day access to my own email/stuff, etc. You are SOOOO right. The curfew forces you/us to do something else.

    I’ve been meaning to ask you about the pilates stuff you do (following on from an article you wrote elsewhere); which one do you recommend? Apolgies if you have this listed somewhere obvious!

    Wishing you a great 2009!

    Big kiss.

  23. I had noticed you sometimes responded to emails in the evening my time, which must have been crazy late your time. The curfew sounds like a good idea.

  24. Just discovered your book, Shauna. Thanks, Cranky Fitness. Look forward to reading and sharing with our clients. If it’s anything like your resolutions, know it will be full of great stuff. So glad to see the attitudes about weight/diet/fitness that you share finally taking hold!

  25. @Bobbie – they’re going really well! I feel a lot more organised, using my time a lot more effectively and eating in a much more sensible manner 🙂

    @PastaQueen – guilty as charged!

    @Marsha – thanks very much, nice to see a new face round here!

    @Gigi – The American version of wanker… hmmm. I guess it just means someone who’s full of shit! Yknow the type?

    Comment No. 27 – is that you Mrs Lard? You’re the only person I know who signs off with “big kiss” 🙂 The Pilates DVD I use is called “Element: Pilates Weight Loss For Beginners” and the instructor is called Brooke Siler. I think I got it from Amazon USA or Caiman.com

    Thanks for the comments folks… I’m a little slower on the replies since the curfew came in 🙂

  26. Hi Shauna! Good luck with the internet curfew. My geeky husband has set up our connection so that it disconnects at 11pm SHARP… the number of times I’ve been in the middle of posting something and it’s all gone blank… sometimes I hate the curfew, but I am always grateful for it. I couldn’t be trusted to just turn the thing off at 11pm by myself.

    – Trish.

  27. Hi Shauna!

    How is the internet curfew going? You’ve inspired me to do the same, I’m not sleeping properly and it’s probably got something to do with surfing until 1.30 every night.