Monday, March 1, 2010

Week in Review

Last week's five-for-five challenge was a success but there were a few times when I thought I would crumble under the pressure of these two little saboteurs:

They alternated night-waking to test my need for coffee and desire to muster enough energy to exercise. There were a few mornings when I was unable to make it to the gym so I turned my living room into an exercise room during their nap time. I do have some miscellaneous exercise equipment but I also did my fair share of push-ups, tricep dips on a chair, running stairs and core work which anyone can do. You have to be resourceful and, of course, resist the urge to pay bills, do chores or nap yourself, but it can be done.

I also did Tracy Anderson's post-pregnancy DVD a few times and let me tell you, it's HARD. My abs were definitely sore the next day and the video targets your entire core and low-back as well as your hips, all which take a beating during pregnancy. I would highly recommend it for all you new moms.

For anyone else looking for a workout they can do at home, check out Tracy's web site for some of her other exercise DVDs. I'm betting you can't go wrong with any of her workouts. After all she is the woman behind the bodies of such A-list celebrities as Gwenyth Paltrow, Courtney Cox and Madona to name a few. I'm just saying. If you have a favorite exercise DVD or at-home workout please comment after the post and let us know what you like and why it works for you.

I really don't want to admit this but starting my day with the nutrient and antioxidant rich green smoothie gave me more energy than my usual cup of coffee. Has anyone else tried it yet and noticed the same thing?

But the most interesting thing I observed last week is that even when you KNOW you will feel better after making positive, healthy choices (exercising daily, reducing caffeine and alcohol consumption, and eating well) it is still hard sometimes to make yourself do it.

I find it helpful to really focus on how good my body will feel after I exercise or eat a healthy, balanced meal. Sometimes, but not always, that is enough to help me make the right choice.

How do you motivate to "do the right thing" when that is the very last thing you actually want to do?


  1. I have found it very helpful to make going to the gym an non-negotiable part of my morning routine. Unless I have a very good reason not to go, immediately after dropping off my older child at preschool, I go to the gym. Even if I'm not feeling excited by the thought of exercise, once I get there, I'm usually fine and can talk myself into a good workout. If, for some reason, I'm still totally unmotivated after getting there (which does occasionally happen), I give myself permission to do a low intensity workout on the elliptical (while reading all of the trashy magazines I can find on the magazine racks).

    The problem comes if there has been an interruption in the routine (sick kid, trip out of town, school cancelled because of too much snow, etc.). Getting back into the routine can be hard.

    Anyway, I seem to have the exercise part of the equation under control, but I still struggle with finding the will-power to make the right food choices, even though I know how important my food choices are to my weight loss goals and overall health. I'm looking forward to reading what everyone else has to say on the topic because I can certainly use some help!

  2. sister,
    made the smoothie this morning and am SHOCKED that it's actually pretty good.
    emergency question...was i supposed to freeze the bananas after peeling them, because i put the whole bananas in the freezer last night and they were frozen solid and i couldn't peel them this am.

    i, for one, am having the smoothie in ADDITION to my coffee. its a start right?

  3. I am with ALison...I dont have the problem with motivating myself to workout. I actually love to workout and get a good sweat going. I find it hard to eat the right thing all the time. I would have a really hard time getting rid of coffee. I am fearful of the headaches that will follow with the withdrawl of caffiene. I want to eat right and drink correctly but can't seem to do it even with all these wonderful recipes and advice your giving. I am not even peer pressured by your change to make a change in myself.

    Anyway, maybe some day it will happen for me because my eating habits are gross.


  4. I couldn't let my post be the first one this morning because it was so negative, so I thought...I'll just post later in the day when everyone's already read through & posted what they have to say...

    I read that post and NO OFFENSE AT ALL TO YOU ERIN, but I was like...well, of course you did your 5 FOR FREAKIN' 5, you skinny monkee! You all can't hear me slamming these keys down but I AM, especially the exclamation points!!!!!!!

    All I have to say is I can't freakin' put one together with the other to save my life. I have gained back 13 of the 20 pounds I lost up till Jan 1 and I am at a loss. I do not possess the discipline to do what I need to do to make the changes I need to make. I'm a lost cause till I can muster up the strength to pull myself up by my boot straps and do what needs to be done. I am seriously not looking for, oh but you can do it, blah blah blah. I know I can but for some God-forsaken reason, I WON'T!!!!

    Frustrated & Fat! (Now that finally did make me smile!)

  5. Life with Love,

    Let me introduce myself, I'm your soul sister. I feel exactly the same way about my inability to "pull myself up by my boot straps and do what needs to be done!"

    I've started reading the book that Erin suggested, "When you Eat at the Refrigerator..." I'm hoping it'll help b/c I'm such a lost cause at this point.

    I wanted you to know that you're not alone...


  6. OK, first of all NO ONE is a lost cause. We all have periods of time in our life when things are just harder than others and we can't seem to make the best choices. That does NOT make you a lost cause.

    I really believe that negative self-talk is one of the biggest hurdles we face in getting healthy. If you tell yourself you are fat or lazy or a junk-food-junky enough times, you will believe it. And once you believe it, it becomes much easier to continue making the same poor choices and it becomes even harder to break the cycle.

    I used to LIVE in a gym and LOVE exercising and even compete in triathlons, so working out was a gimmee for me. Something I never had to think about. Now it's my biggest struggle ... the babies, the cold, my knee, the snow ... I've always got a great excuse why I don't fit it in. That doesn't make me a lost cause in the fitness department though ... I just try and do better each week.

    But of course I did the 5-for-5 b/c I POSTED to the world about it and my husband made a CHART on our white board in the kitchen where I had to check off when I accomplished one of my 5. As if that wasn't enough, he KICKED me out of bed to work out and/or texted me throughout the day until I actually did my workout. I mean really, I had some serious help people :)

    The biggest thing was that I told all of you I would do it. So, if I didn't I would have had to publicly admit my inability to follow-through. That is a pretty strong motivator for me. So, get a workout buddy, post your chart where the whole family can see it and ask you about it. We can make Mondays or Fridays on FAL a "check-in" day where we check in with each other to see if we've been exercising, or eating better, or reducing our soda, etc. We can help each other stick to our goals. It takes a village people ...


  7. I am with you Erin! I love the idea of a "check in" day. Someone please hold me accountable for what I say I am going to do! I'd love to be part of the village!

    PS. Green drink rules over coffee..... I don't get that withdraw headache or need to take a 2 pm nap everyday. I love it & so do my kids!

  8. Erin, I totally get why & how you did the 5 for 5 and seriously, awesome job!!!

    You are right about negative self-talk and I have actually been doing a lot less of that and constantly reminding myself to be nice to me! Thank you again for that reminder.

    I think this is just not the season for me to "get fit" as MUCH as I think I want it more than anything else. I need to figure out how to love me, care for me, and work on the inner parts of me that are screaming for attention. Heaven, hear my cries!

    Christi...I bet you're BEAUTIFUL regardless of how you feel!!!!!

  9. LifewithLove and Christi - You are both beautiful. Give yourselves a big hug because you care enough to question where you are, and want to do differently but not sure where or how.

    Dear ones, I was in a fat depression fog for about 10 years until I decided I was missing the best years of my life. No one else can make that decision for you, but once you do, spoil yourself with every thing you need to do to be a success at it. If that means a trainer, get a trainer. If that means walking the dog 6 times a day, do that (most dogs will LOVE that). If it means one step in front of another for a 1/4 mile, that's a beginning.

    Trying to change too much at one time will be exhausting. Target the ONE thing you want to do differently for a week (or 5 days). Just ONE. Eat different, or walk or go to the gym. But ONE THING. Then on day 6, call yourself a success and get your nails done --it's non fattening and feels decadent. Take a day off (do not binge, but just take it easy). Then start the next week. Maybe you'll be ready to add one more thing. Maybe not. If not, do the same thing as the prior week. ONE THING.

    When our kids are little, the small successes in OUR lives are HUGE. I mean really, who can fit all of our stuff in between potty training and preschool and hospitalizations (Erin?) and life. Just ONE THING at a time.

    You're beautiful.

  10.'ve hit the nail on the head for me. Oh to take back all the mental & emotional energy robbed of me by body & food issues. Somedays I just say, I will not give ANY of myself to this (body/food stuff) today...I want to fully enjoy LIFE today as I am with my little ones & those around me. Thank you for the small steps encouragement...that seems doable!

  11. Hi girls,

    I know it's a new day, and I'm late with my comments from yesterday, but they were all so considerate and smart. I'm teary eyed as I type...

    I love the idea of focusing on just one thing at a time. I think I try to do everything and when one thing slacks. I throw my hands up and say, "well, it's all ruined" and stop everything.

    This week I'm working on sitting down every time I eat. Sounds silly, but I've discovered that I stand and eat so that I can more easily "serve" my kids as they demand more drink, more, more, more. That translates into me eating more, more, more. Sitting makes me more conscious of what and how much I'm eating.

    Baby steps. That's what I'm working on this week. I'll let you know how it goes on check in day.