Tag Archives: staying accountable

Week 3 check-in: Hanging In Despite Little Progress

This is my second check-in. It has been a bit of a rough go the last couple weeks.

Exercise

Pair of dumbbells, green apple, measuring tape and bottle of water. Exercise and healthy diet concept.
Pair of dumbbells, green apple, measuring tape and bottle of water. Exercise and healthy diet concept.

I started the two weeks strong– walking 4-5 days per week and strength training, and then I fell. Walking through a door, I fell hard on my right side. For a couple days I felt as though I had been beaten up because I was so sore. Getting back into walking and strength training has been difficult.

In addition, it is cold out where I live. Going outside at 6am to walk has become incredibly undesirable. Even getting myself out of bed to walk on my treadmill in the basement has been hard.

The combination of falling and how cold it is in the morning has meant I need to rethink about my workout habits and restart. I am trying to figure out what will make this more doable. More next week.

Eating to Support My Goals

Vegetables and fruits are among my main foods!
Vegetables and fruits are among my main foods!

While exercising has been difficult, eating healthy has been going well. I have been primarily eating fruits, vegetables, and brown rice. I have been eating small amounts of chicken and fish. I was concerned a couple weeks ago I was eating too little because I was eating about 1200 calories so I increased the number of calories to 1400. I am not sure what to make of this, but I put back on 1 pound. This is very disheartening. I am not sure if this is because the amount I am exercising is decreased (although exercise alone is not good for losing weight) or if my portions have gotten more generous. I will be weighing and measuring everything this week. Regaining that pound was demoralizing.

Being Mindful With Money

A picture of the word budget in letters on a background of dollars, because budget is the word for the month!
A picture of the word budget in letters on a background of dollars, because budget is the word for the month!

The good news is that I dramatically cut down how much I am spending on books and other miscellaneous things that are impulse buys. I also was only over our food budget by $40 for the month of January. The bad news is I was unable to dramatically lower my credit debt because of necessary car repairs, medical expenses, and the cost of new prescription glasses. Again, this month has been a bit demoralizing.

Unplugging From Screens

Three televisions stacked because this goal I back tracked and didn't do so well
Three televisions stacked because this goal I back tracked and didn’t do so well

The last couple weeks have been pretty depressing– too cold, hurt, gained back a pound, too many bills, etc. I overindulged in watching television. I don’t even really like The Vampire Diaries, but somehow I am on season 6. Sigh. I have also done well watching some documentaries. Ugh. I need to regroup on changing this habit.

Meditation

At first I was doing very well and increasing the amount of time I was meditating. Then I chained meditating to my exercise habit and it all fell apart. I need to regroup on this one as well.

Overall

Ugh. Not the most successful couple of weeks. I have felt depressed and backslid on these habits. I am a bit disappointed in myself for not staying the course and working my way through the fall, the bills, etc. Life happens and I want to be able to cope with life better and maintain my good habits.

More on all of this next time as I keep working on this and journaling.

Week 1 Check-in: A Bit of Progress?

This is my first check-in on this blog. I figured I would just describe how my week went in regards to exercising, eating to support my goals, budgeting and being mindful of my money, unplugging from screens, and meditating.

Exercising

Photo hand weights
Hand weights

The good news? I exercised 4 days this week. Two of the times I was supposed to exercise I didn’t. One of those times, I was just too worn out from the week to do much. The other time I didn’t do the exercise first thing in the morning and the day got away from me. I learned I need to do my exercise first thing in the morning if I want to make sure I get it done.

About the exercise I did do– walking on the treadmill is kind of boring. I try to get screen time in on the treadmill, but it is still dull. Walking outside is much better.

I have been working with a coach from Nerd Fitness. For strength training, she gives me sets of exercises to do with nerdy names like “Pushing Back Ozymandias” or “ROW-schach”. So far I have not been able to keep straight what exercises are in these sets. I try to do all the exercises in the sets. Sometimes the exercise bands I have don’t work for the exercises and so I swap something I know how to do for what is in the sets. I feel it is going ok.

Eating to Support My Goals

Preparing healthy vegetables to meet the goal of eating 2 cups of vegetables per day
Preparing healthy vegetables to meet the goal of eating 2 cups of vegetables per day

This week I ate under 1500 calories every day. This is good. I had a handful of days that I ate too few calories and was outside of my target range. This is not so good. Eating too few calories will mean I will lose weight, but it also means I may not have anywhere to go to lower my calories more.

I also did not eat all of my vegetables. I have been trying to eat 2 cups of vegetables every night for dinner. That’s a lot of vegetables! Well cooked vegetables are yummy. Sometimes I just get tired of eating and I don’t eat the vegetables.

Being Mindful With Money

Money habits sign
Money habits sign on the wooden piggy bank.

I am following a budget. I had two unexpected hits to my budget this week. I was able to roll with things, but the net effect will be that my overall budget has to be adjusted. I am still working that out.

Budgeting is a funny thing because it forces you to think about what is important.

For instance, making music is important to me. I had to decide if guitar lessons were important enough to become where I spend the majority of my disposable income.

What I purchased outside of necessities: rented 2 Spiderman movies (indulgence, but I tried to checking them out of the library first), art supplies such as pens and a ruler and 2 easels.

My household stayed within our budget for food this last 2 weeks! I made some progress paying down the credit card. I feel overall like I am making some headway, but I shouldn’t have rented the Spiderman movies. I did that kind of on impulse after the DVDs from the library didn’t work.

Unplugging From Screens

A photo of a remote with a smart television
A photo of a remote with a smart television

I tried. In this category I did not do very well. Some days after work I am so exhausted I cannot even get myself to read. I have dinner and then I just want to sit and not do anything. Watching TV fills the gap. It doesn’t offer me much. I mean how many vampire teen soap operas can one watch? I am trying to figure out the fatigue and the work life balance of this.

Meditation

Silhouette of a person meditating
Silhouette of a person meditating

I enjoy meditating. To build new habits I chain them to other habits. Meditating I chained to working out and every day I worked out, I meditated. I want to find another way to build mediation into my day because I enjoy it! Trust me I never thought I would say that.

Currently, I am meditating in 7 minute blocks. I want to increase the length of time I am meditating to 20 minutes over the next month or so. I am finding on days I meditate I have more cushion to cope with life’s stuff. Also, I am noticing my own thoughts much more and able to consciously reframe some of my thinking. This is a good thing.

Overall?

Overall, I would say I made some progress. Trying to journal and be mindful of these various habits has put me in touch with how isolated I feel right now. Some of the isolation is due to the COVID pandemic and some to my habits. I say this because I have not been what one would call a social butterfly for a long time, but the effects of the isolation are hitting me.

In addition, I have been struggling with work and life balance. It’s easy to over work. Even though I have been cutting back for several months, I still need to be mindful and take breaks. I often feel so burned out by the middle of the week and I think this is contributing to more use of screens. Stuff to figure out. More next week.