December is the New January... Why Wait?
This year I am going to start in December! As of today, I am starting my plan to take it to that next level now instead of waiting for January 1st. I want to start 2015 already in-progress. For me, health and fitness these past six months (post-surgery) have been pretty up and down. I had to take some “time off” because of recovering and some health issues and have since let myself use “recovering” as excuses to let myself ease up on the routines that I know make me feel my best, eg. keeping a regular exercise schedule, trying new things here and there (which I love to do), and eating the ways that make me feel my best.
I am not being hard on myself, I took the break I needed. I took the necessary time to recover and get healthy again, but now it is time to kick things up a notch and get back to the point where I felt I had more strength and energy. One of the biggest things I am feeling since slowing down on workouts and healthier routines is my endurance levels. I have noticed even after a moderate/slow paced workout that I tire easy and get out of breath. I also don’t recover as well. And something that has a huge impact on me, I am not sleeping as well either.
I am not even going to mention my jeans! I try not to let gaining a few pounds bother me, but if I am being honest.. IT TOTALLY DOES! Haha.
Not feeling my best has a spiraling effect on me. Working out and eating healthy go hand and hand for me. Post-surgery, I started to let the foods I ate in moderation ( 80/20) sneak into more of everyday, every-other day (50/50) type arrangement. This equals, not feeling great!
Typically, I would say that I pretty much take December off of exercise. I just end up not exercising and telling myself I don’t need to because I am going to start January 1st. Obviously! So that means I get to eat and celebrate and take a break for December. But not this year! My challenge to myself, as of the beginning of this month, is to start to get my health and fitness routines on track now. How am I going to do this? I have a strategy!!
My strategy for doing this is.. plan, plan, plan. I am not very good at planning more than a week ahead of time. But the good thing about December is that people know how busy this time of year is, so they tend to make plans ahead of time. So as of today, I pretty much know exactly what I am doing for the next 21 days. Totally perfect for me for my “taking it to the next level now” commitment.
Phase 1 of my strategy: I sat down with my calendar, put in all the commitments I had, and then added in my exercise as appointments around those (in red, meaning I cannot miss it).
Phase 2 of my strategy: More planning. Food planning. I went to the grocery store and stocked up on all the things I know I need to keep myself on track. And also, partly in my head, and partly in my phone notes, I scheduled what I am going to eat for the next couple of days. Food planning and having the right foods in my home really helps me resist those last minute easy/quick solutions that usually aren't as healthy. If I over indulge, no problem, I know I have all my exercises scheduled for that week as “damage control”
Phase 3 of my strategy: Keep it fun. The easiest way I find to take it to that next level, is to keep it fun. Maybe this means, trying new things. Or scheduling a workout with a friend or both. I never stray far from Barre. It is my foundation. But I do love to try new things. So today, I took a Soul Cycle class by myself, and just booked another class this time with a friend. SO fun! If you already have a class/routine you love, challenge yourself to give it even more in your next class. We all know the difference between how we feel (and how we look) when we’ve left a workout; giving it our all versus just getting through it.
Phase 4 of my strategy: Visual and Audio Motivation.
Audio: I love making my workout playlists for myself and for my classes. Sometimes great music can be the greatest motivations. If you don't have your own, you can listen to mine on Spotify, here is my latest: Dec. is the new Jan.
Visual motivation: This might sound silly, and it is, a little bit, but I find having a visual motivation also helps as a reminder to keep myself on track. Maybe it’s a picture of where you are going on vacation and need to be in a bikini, maybe it’s a picture of an outfit you want to fit in to, or maybe of your good friend who just posted a picture of herself today with insane abs ( Karly Treacy). Or maybe it’s a picture of yourself when you felt in a healthier place. Here is mine pre-surgery:
I just shared my challenge for myself. Now, my challenge to all of you MsFits is to do the same!
Make December the new January. For the next month, hashtag #msfitforsociety or send us a photo on Facebook. A photo of you “taking it to the next level”. This is so individual, it can be of you working out. It can be of you making a healthy recipe, a sports activity, an exciting new outfit, goal setting. Anything at all!
To motivate our amazing MsFits, we're going to be giving away one of my favorite pieces from Splits59, The Ashby Tank. Send us those photos and you'll be automatically entered into a drawing to win!!!
In the New Year, I will post a gallery of our collective efforts so we can see how great it is for us to be starting 2015 “already in-progress."
Happy December MsFits!