New Year Goals Check-In: March

I'm doing monthly updates on my New Year Goals. One quarter of the year has passed, for feck's sake.

March highlights:

  • I started to properly enjoy kickboxing again, instead of spending the whole class fuming about my lack of fitness.
  • Pilates is fantastic. Some moves that killed me in the first week are getting easier.
  • I lost a couple more pounds.
  • Food diary still going great guns.

Things that didn't go as well:

  • Once again I lost momentum with my eating at the end of the month. The pattern is now clear: I plan the meals for about two weeks, then the groceries run out, then I get busy and tried and just buy bits and pieces here and there, and the meal choices don't end up being quite as healthy. The plan for April is to set a reminder to re-shop. I do it online; so I could really just click one button and they'd deliver me the same stuff as the previous order… it's really not bloody hard!
  • Once again my exercise frequency tailed off at the end of the month. I simply did not make it a priority and that cannot go on. I have the time, I just have to make the time.

Example: A few weekends Julia and I were feverishly working on Up & Running over Skype. After awhile she announced, "Okay I'll be back in an hour, I need to get in my bike ride".

What!? I felt rather indignant. What about all this work we had to do? When she returned later all refreshed and energised, the words were blurring in front of my eyes and my bum was numb.

And what had I been editing while she was away? A post about the importance of making time for exercise. For crying out loud 🙂

These past few weeks I've been marvelling at the lovely Up & Runners planning their schedules, ditching excuses and truly committing to themselves and their training. While I had been skipping workouts and not getting enough sleep.

This has been my pattern for a long while now. I'm not being harsh on myself here when I say I find it very easy to find "very important" reasons not to exercise. Some of it comes from worrying about what other people think if everything's not perfect and wonderful, but a huge part of it that I really quite enjoy spending hours in front of the computer in my tracky dacks, instead of going outside and working up a sweat.

I need to take a leaf out of Julia's book and put the exercise first. She plans her exercise, then she schedules in her work tasks, then she sticks to the bloody plan. She thinks highly enough of herself to keep that committment.

I know I do better work when I make time for physical activity. I know it helps my lard-busting efforts but most importantly it keeps my mind clear. And althought I'm not a runner, I don't want to be a hypocrite and cheer on all our lovely Up & Runners for making time to exercise when I'm not bloody doing it properly myself 🙂

So in April it's all about working smarter, not harder. Let the glacial progress continue!

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21 thoughts on “New Year Goals Check-In: March

  1. There are a lot of positives here! And some great insights.

    I also have a history of putting my own needs last (because look how hard I’m working, look what a good girl I am), but I’m over that now. Millions will call me selfish, but they’re not living in my 330-ish pound body.

  2. Ugh. I just read this post as I was shoving junk food in my mouth and patting myself on the back for being so “committed” to my job that I can’t squeeze in an hour of exercise or even a decent lunchtime meal during the week (but somehow seem to find time for blogsurfing and weekend planning). Thank you for the wake-up call! Tonight I have a date with my running shoes!

  3. Those are some pretty great highlights for the month of March! I especially like that you’re starting to have fun with kickboxing again. Having fun with my workouts is one of my new subgoals for the month. I feel like I’ve gotten too serious about them, and have thus sucked all the fun out of them.

  4. Sounds like you had a great March!

    I think everyone gets a bit fed up with exercise sometimes, even when you love it. I was reading Haruki Murakami’s running book on the weekend and he recalled a time he interviewed a famous Japanese long distance runner and asked him if he ever had a day where he woke up and didn’t feel like running. Apparently the runner looked at him like he’d asked a really dumb question and said “uh, yeah..all the time!” 😛

    I think the key is striking the right balance between discipline, commitment and making it fun 🙂 x

  5. Shauna,
    Not only are you adorable but you always seem to write a post that says just what I need to hear. I’ve been exercising at least 90 minutes a day (Zumba! and BodyPump) for over a month, but haven’t lost A SINGLE POUND because I am a pig. Junk food, sweets, pizza, you name it. What is my problem? Too lazy to plan healthy meals. What sense does that make, to go to the trouble of taking the time to exercise but eating more calories than I’m burning? Thanks for the kick in the right direction.

  6. God, you’re so not alone in finding a million other things to do than Your. Goddamn. Exercise.

    I get busy working on client programs, or business-development type stuff, both of which I love, and think “Yeah, I’ll do my training later”. Which of course NEVER happens.

    The only thing that ever works for me is to get out of bed and train. It’s not complicated, just don’t turn the bloody computer on till the workout is done. Gah! Why are we so stoopid sometimes?

  7. Hey–glaciers may be slow but they are mighty, and substantially awesome:-)

    I love listening to you work these things out in your posts. And you are so right–making time to exercise can result in such relief–but it’s so damn easy to forget just how much better you’re going to feel.

    Here’s to progress!

  8. @Nicole – Oh heck yeah, I can imagine it’s all about working harder for you guys! (Especially with Ms Bossypants Julia around 😉 But for me right now it definitely needs to be smarter 🙂

    Cheers for your comments everyone!

  9. Yeah! The other week i was pre-dawn lunging around with my group up and down ramps by the beach. Trying to transcend the achey muscles and fatigue, I looked out and saw all these twinkling boat lights and realized this is my FAVOURITE part of the day. I’ve been trying to cling onto that when I get the cloak of dread — and accompanying excuses — before i actually go do the exercise. XX

  10. Me too. I totally love writing and study and feeling like I’m achieving on that front. Exercise makes me feel great too, but the ‘results’ are not so easy to track. It’s not like I can finish a session and feel great that I’m ‘x’ much fitter. But, I can sit for two hours and write 1000 words that I feel good about. I just know that I’ll never feel like doing exercise, but just have to do it anyway. The feeling of righteousness afterward is always worth it.

  11. I love your attitude and your “glacial pace.” As one who has been on a sloooow speed for 4 years, I can relate. Thank you for continuing to include us in your life, even when you are so busy!

  12. Me, I find it best to exercise in the morning…because I am usually buggered after work, then you get that nice self-satisfied glow about having done stuff.
    I have learned that a short walk/home workout is better than nothing at all.
    I have some circuits that I can give you, if you like.

  13. Good going with the kickboxing and the pilates. Seems like excercise is going in the right direction, at least. Keep savouring the positive stuff and working at the things that can be done better! (And thanks for reminding me about the importance of planning meals, -that’s where my personal mudslides are these days…)

  14. Perhaps you’re being a bit hard on yourself? Is exercise an all or nothing campaign? What about that stuff you’ve written before about taking baby steps? That’s still relevant isn’t it? Is it okay for us to be humble? Take the strain off our lack of exercise guilty conscience by maybe just going out for a short walk or something? I hope that’s still okay because that’s all I’m doing and I’m not planning on feeling guilty about it.

  15. People often comment that I must be very disciplined (yes what a hero eh?)I usually reply that it’s not quite like that – I just want to be/see myself as the sort of person who exercises regularly. I want to be That Person (now to be more organised about meals…le sigh….)

  16. No, I’m not being hard on myself. This is not about guilt – I’m not feeling any guilt here! Rather than "all or nothing" this past year or so it's pretty much been just nothing and I've gained a lot of weight
    back as a result. I *have* been taking humble baby steps over the past few months, which yes I will ALWAYS advocate as the way to approach fitness and health and life in general.

    But now it’s time for me to take it up a level and try to get some consistency with my exercise, instead of going well for the first half a month (and that’s only been 2-3 bouts of exercise per week, nothing crazy) then doing NOTHING for the second half of the month.

    Remember this post is about *me* and *my* situation and *my* goals and priorities. It’s totally cool to go for a walk and of course not feel guilty about it, of course that’s okay!

    But my personal desire is to get back to feeling fit and strong. Exercise is important to me. I like being able to lift heavy weights and keep up with a 90 minute kickboxing class or a long walk with Gareth. Right now my body struggles with that and I don’t want this to be how I live my life.

    I want to be a fit, strong and active old dame when I’m in my twilight years. I also like that when I exercise regularly my mind feels clear and I don’t struggle with depression. This is my personal goal and nothing more 🙂

  17. I love this post and had been lazy when I was reading on the feed and didn’t click through to say so. Thanks for your comment — I had been panicky that I sounded too mean in that post. I don’t know if I’ll ever get tired of your “me too” comments, especially since I often end up blogging on the same topics as you do. I’m feeling the same way, that I still haven’t made weight loss a priority and have been faffing around with the same pounds for ages. The food is the hardest part, I do OK on the exercise most of the time. Glad to see you have plans for change. I am leaving for a business trip tomorrow and plan to practice staying on target when I’m away. It’s easier for me to eat healthy when I’m busy and have to expense my meals — I don’t want to turn in 100 stupid snacks, so I just order healthy food.

  18. Thanks for your comment about all or nothing. That’s how I was feeling – I signed up for Up and Runners, and that week (March 28-April 1) was just not going to work for me to start the program. I started to feel WAY guilty – about not starting and losing the money – and my husband helped me realize that I could start it this week. And I did, and I finished my first workout on Monday (and I have my next this afternoon). Progress not perfection!

  19. I am so glad I read this today – I want to go for a bike ride but I am with you in preferring to sit at the computer rather than go out – but I feel so much better with a bit of exercise – sounds like you are making some good progress