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Mid-Week Motivation: 3/13/13

Happy Hump Day everyone!!

I had a really hard time getting up this morning.  I don’t think my body has adjusted to the time change yet.  Anyone else struggling with getting up?  Don’t get me wrong – I LOVE the daylight savings time change.  I am so grateful to get that extra few hours of sun in the evening!!  I just have a hard time waking up.

While sipping my coffee this morning, I was perusing Pinterest looking for some motivation.  I ran across these quotes and thought they were rather inspiring, so I thought I would share them with you ….

today

Just in case you needed a little boost like I did.  🙂

never give up

Have a great Wednesday!!  What is it that you will do today to help you get closer to your goals??  Me?  I’m going for a long run tonight.  🙂

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The Voices in My Head

I don’t know why I listen to them.  Or why I let them get me down.

(Just to be clear, the voices I’m referring to are those of self-doubt, self-loathing and self-deprecation. I’m not actually crazy.)

It was these voices that caused me to make a rash decision this weekend and withdraw from my classes.

“You can’t do this.”

But I hate failing at something before it’s even started.

“You don’t deserve this.”

I spent the whole weekend in a major funk.  It started on Friday night when I stayed up all night after a concert.  I was obviously sleep deprived.  I crawled in a hole that I had created for myself.  Once I was down, it was really hard getting back up.

“You’re not good enough.”

All of these tiny little voices keep repeating in my head.

“You are not strong enough.”

I’ve actually been through a lot the last 3 years with my dad passing away, taking care of his estate, then having a baby born 16 weeks early and spending four and a half months driving back and forth from the NICU to home to work. I look back and wonder how I made it through. Other people would comment that I was handling it so well.   What choice did I have?  When you’re in the middle of a crisis, you just power through.
But now I completely understand how Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome happens.  It’s not til after the dust has settled, or after the fog has lifted that you are able to look back at the event with open eyes.  That’s when the magnitude of the situation hits you.  It’s like a delayed reaction.

So why do I listen to these little voices??  Why do I let them get me down??

I am strong.

I do deserve this.

And I know I can do it!!

That’s not to say it won’t be hard.  And I know it’s going to take a lot of time.  But I’m prepared.  I’m ready for the fight.

So today I emailed my professor and called the school.  I asked them to reverse the withdrawal; that I’d had a moment of weakness and fully regretted the rash decision, and could they please put me back in the classes.

Good news!!  I’m back in.

And I do need to add — none of this would have been possible without my wonderful husband to support me.  He was actually the one who signed me up for the classes in the first place.  And he’s the one who convinced me that I can do it.   <—- so I can blame him when I actually fail, right?!?  I’m kidding.

I’m ready.  Bring it.

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Mid-week Motivation – 1/9/13

Did anyone else happen to catch this brilliant post by The Lean Green Bean on Monday??  It really spoke to me and where I’m at in my life right now.  She’s absolutely right.  Time is going to pass regardless of what you do.  So many times in my life I’ve looked back and thought “If I’d started X then, I’d be done now.”  And so many times the reason I never got started was because of how long it would take or how hard it would be.  But if it’s important to you, it will be worth it!!

Motivation today

I love this quote.  Sometimes all it takes is baby steps.  A little every day to get where we need to be.  So where do you want to be tomorrow??  Are you doing something today to help get you there?? Pinned Image

Happy Hump Day everyone!!!  Now go out there and do something meaningful.

 

Question of the Day:  What will you do today that will get you closer to where you want to be tomorrow??

My Answer:  I’m going to go for a long run and I’m going to study tonight!!

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The Crazy Week Before

You know Christmas is next week, right? I hope that’s not a news flash for anyone. It seems to have snuck up on me this year. I feel more behind than I have in recent years. Every year I say I’m going to start my shopping early next year. And every year I still end up procrastinating.

I’m sure everyone has that chicken-with-their-head-cut-off feeling this week before Christmas.  (If you don’t, then I envy you for being way more organized than I am!)
I haven’t really had any time to blog, which is fine because I haven’t felt much like blogging either. 

I really try to keep my posts positive and upbeat.  I want to be a motivator for other people.  But what happens when the motivator has a bad day (or two or three)?? I tend to be really hard on myself.  
Sometimes I feel like I try to do too much.  And because of that, I don’t feel like I do any one thing very well. 
With a husband and two kids, I feel like I need to be focusing more time and attention on them.  But instead I have this stressful full-time job, a few time-consuming hobbies, the courses I’m taking, my blog, and a fitness obsession.  It’s hard juggling work and balancing family time with everything else.

I didn’t do my usual WIAW post yesterday.  Mostly because I didn’t feel like it, but also because I didn’t eat very much.  I tend to do that when I am stressed.  Some people eat when they are stressed.  Not me – I eat when I’m happy.
(This may actually work in my favor, considering my wellness challenge ends in 11 days. Lol)

Question of the Day : What is left on your To Do List before Christmas?
And what do you do when you are stressed – eat or not?

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Mid-Week Motivation

I’m in need of a little motivation to get me through the rest of the week.  There’s so much on my To Do list that it’s a little overwhelming.  Sometimes this makes me more productive, and other times it simply paralyzes me, which is where I am right now.

I am stuck in a rut.  Maybe I just need a good workout.  Or maybe I just need a good sleep.  I don’t know exactly.  But I think it’s more than that.

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I had a great talk with a friend yesterday about finding your passions in life.
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I definitely know where my passions lie.  Now it’s just a matter of creating a plan to get where I want to be.

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Life is too short not to do what you love.

Question of the day: are you chasing your passions or are you stuck in a rut? Are you doing what makes you happy? If no, why not??

What do you need to do to get where you want to be??

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Monday Motivation – 11/19/12

Also titled “Maintain Don’t Gain Wellness Challenge Tip #3”

Warning:  There’s not a cute little sign in this post.  This week’s tip is regarding SUGAR.  Do you know how much sugar you are consuming every day?  Start reading your labels – sugar is hidden in most every processed food.  Even a small kids carton of 100% apple juice contains 22 grams of sugar.

The American Heart Association recommends that women have no more than 20 grams of sugar per day.  For men, they recommend no more than 36 grams per day.  And for children, only 12 grams per day.  So if your child drinks one small carton of 100% apple juice, they have almost doubled their recommended sugar intake for the day.  Shocking, I know.  Because you think 100% apple juice would be healthy.  But it’s all sugar. Excess sugar can alter metabolism, raise blood pressure, skew the signaling of hormones and damage the liver.  Hmm… sounds a lot like what alcohol does to you too.

In fact, a team of researchers from the University of California argue that sugar should be considered a controlled substance just like alcohol and tobacco because it poses enough health risks.

In an opinion piece called “The Toxic Truth About Sugar” that was published Feb. 1 in the journal Nature, Robert Lustig, Laura Schmidt and Claire Brindis argue that it’s a misnomer to consider sugar just “empty calories.” They write:

“There is nothing empty about these calories. A growing body of scientific evidence is showing that fructose can trigger processes that lead to liver toxicity and a host of other chronic diseases. A little is not a problem, but a lot kills — slowly.”

We’re a nation that’s sweet on sugar: the average U.S. adult downs 22 teaspoons of sugar a day, according to the American Heart Association, and surveys have found that teens swallow 34 teaspoons.

No one is claiming the effect of sugar is quite that potent, but, says Brownell, “it helps confirm what people tell you anecdotally, that they crave sugar and have withdrawal symptoms when they stop eating it.”

Dr Lustig is a pediatric endocrinologist at the University of California.  You can watch his 90 minute lecture on YouTube here:  Sugar: The Bitter Truth   It’s FASCINATING.  He is an excellent speaker.

And I highly recommend you read this 2011 New York Times article written by Gary Taubes:  Is Sugar Toxic?   Gary Taubes has written a number of articles and books, all regarding nutrition.

After reading the article and watching the video, I’ll let you make your own determination about whether sugar is bad.  But I know I’m going to start avoiding it like the plague.

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4 Miles Later the Bad Mood is Gone!

As I told you earlier, I was in a funk.  But just as I knew it would, my run put me in a better mood.  In fact, that was the best run I’ve had in a long time!!  After work, I headed over to my favorite running spot, Lakeshore Park.  In less than 2 weeks, I’m running in a 8K on Turkey Day, so I really need to get some mileage in.

The view from the top of the hill

The sun was starting to set so I was trying to run as fast as I could.  This is a hilly greenway, so my goal is to sprint the hills and recover at the top with a short walk.  I was a little slower in the beginning, but once I found my groove it was smooth sailing.  I probably could have done another 2.1 mile lap but I didn’t want to overdo it.

When I got back to my car, I refueled with some BCAAs.  This Protein Shot is really not bad.  It tastes better than you would expect.  And at 120 calories and 26 grams of protein, it’s a great recovery drink.

Finished the night off with a healthy dinner.

Grilled pork chops, roasted carrots and steamed broccoli. Delicious.

Question of the Day:  What is your favorite post-work out drink or snack?

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TGIF

I didn’t think it was possible to wake up in a foul mood on a Friday. But somehow I managed. I’ve been in a bit of a funk lately.  The weather and the time change certainly don’t help. Who wants to go outside to run in the dark and the cold?  Not me. And I hate running on treadmills. So for the last two days I have chosen to sit my butt on the couch and sulk instead. 

You know that quote, “You’re only one workout away from a good mood.”  That’s totally me. I know I just need a really good hard core workout to get the endorphins flowing. But making time for it is the hard part when you have a stressful full-time job, 2 kids, a hubby, and a house to take care of.

It’s funny – if someone else had just given me the ‘I don’t have time’ excuse, I would come back with “If it’s important to you, you’ll make time” or “One hour is only 4% of your day”.  But for some reason it’s not motivating me right now. It’s like I need to wallow in the funk for a while. I’ll snap out of it. Right after I make time for a workout. 

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Monday Motivation: 11-5-12

As I told you on Thursday, we started a new Wellness Challenge at work to get through the holidays without adding any extra pounds.  My first tip is about drinking water!  Do you drink enough water every day?

Do you know how important water is for the human body?

We’ve all heard you should drink 8 glasses every day.  This is actually just an average.  If you weigh more, you need more.  And of course, if you exercise, you need to replace the fluids you lost when exercising.

Top 11 Health Benefits of Drinking Water

source

You will be amazed of the benefits of drinking water as follow:

    1. Lose weight: Drinking water helps you lose weight because it flushes down the by-products of fat breakdown.  Drinking water reduces hunger, it’s an effective appetite suppressant so you’ll eat less.  Plus, water has zero calories.
    2. Natural Remedy for Headache: Helps to relieve headache and back pains due to dehydration.  Although many reasons contribute to headache, dehydration is the common one.
    3. Look Younger with Healthier Skin: You’ll look younger when your skin is properly hydrated.  Water helps to replenish skin tissues, moisturizes skin and increases skin elasticity.
    4. Better Productivity at Work: Your brain is mostly made up of water, thus drinking water helps you think better, be more alert and more concentrated.
    5. Better Exercise: Drinking water regulates your body temperature. That means you’ll feel more energetic when doing exercises. Water also helps to fuel your muscle.
    6. Helps in Digestion and Constipation: Drinking water raises your metabolism because it helps in digestion.  Fiber and water goes hand in hand so that you can have your daily bowel movement.
    7. Less Cramps and Sprains: Proper hydration helps keep your joints and muscles lubricated, so you’ll less likely get cramps and sprains.
    8. Less Likely to Get Sick and Feel Healthy: Drinking plenty of water helps fight against flu and other ailments like kidney stones and heart attack.  Water adds with lemon is used for ailments like respiratory disease, intestinal problems, rheumatism and arthritis etc. In another words one of the benefits of drinking water is that it can improve your immune system.
    9. Relieves Fatigue:  Water is used by the body to help flush out toxins and waste products from the body.  If your body lacks water, your heart, for instance, needs to work harder to pump out the oxygenated blood to all cells, so are the rest of the vital organs, your organs will be exhausted and so will you.
    10. Good Mood: Your body feels very good and that’s why you feel happy.
    11. Reduce the Risk of Cancer: Related to the digestive system, some studies show that drinking a healthy amount of water may reduce the risks of bladder cancer and colon cancer. Water dilutes the concentration of cancer-causing agents in the urine and shortens the time in which they are in contact with bladder lining.

Wow!!  After reading that, just tell me you don’t want to rush to the kitchen and chug down a big glass of water!

Furthermore, if you’re drinking soda, here’s a little food for thought:

So if you drink soda, I encourage you to start replacing just one soda a day with water.  You don’t have to quit cold turkey, but imagine the health benefits if you did!

Here’s this week’s challenge:  Take note of how much water you are drinking every day.  Is it enough?  Do you need to increase it?  Need help?  I found a neat product called Hydracoach.  It digitally calculates, monitors and reminds you to drink your water.  How cool is that?!?

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Maintain, Don’t Gain Wellness Challenge

… also titled ‘My November Goals’.

So, we started another wellness challenge at work.  I really wanted some motivation to help get me through the holidays.  I tend to throw caution to the wind during the months of November and December- baking, eating, drinking, and just having fun.  And as a result, I typically gain 5-10 pounds every year, which then has to come off some time in the following 3-6 months.  Well, I didn’t want to do that this year.  I want to stay on track with my fitness goals.  (Speaking of goals, I’ve never actually written any down.  I think now is a good time to start).

It’s so hard for me to find motivation alone.  I need the support and encouragement of others.  It’s not the competition that I want, it’s the accountability that  I need.  So I am spearheading a Wellness Challenge at work.

There are 2 options to choose from – #1 is simple – just don’t gain any weight over the holidays.  Weigh in on November 1st and again on December 31st.  If you gained any weight at all, you have to pay $25.  Everyone who maintained or lost their weight will be entered to win a drawing of all the loser’s money.  Easy.  I had over 20 people choose this option!

#2 is quite a bit more complicated with a team structure and point system.  I won’t share all the details with you, but suffice it to say that this one will definitely keep me motivated!  There are 6 of us that chose this option, which is 3 different 2-person teams.  It should be a lot of fun.

I plan on sending out weekly tips and motivational emails to all participants.  I’ll include them on the blog for you too!  My very first tip includes setting goals.  Specific, measurable goals.  It’s not enough to say “I’ll exercise more” or “I’ll eat better”.  Those are not specific enough.  And set a deadline for achieving that goal.

Here are my goals for November:

1)  Lose 4 pounds (1 per week) by the end of November

2)  Run in 8k on Thanksgiving Day!  (Haven’t done this race in 6 years!)

3)  Set a PR on deadlift at 120#

So here is my challenge to you…. can you get through the holidays without gaining weight this year?  Can you strive to ‘Maintain, Don’t Gain’ this year?  How will you do it?  Set your goals today!

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