Each Sunday, I will post a blog to help you prepare for the week, set some goals, and feel inspired. The whole reason for this blog was to get back a time in my life where it was possible for a couple of friends and I to physically get together weekly for “Fit Club.” We met on Monday nights and did a workout (usually Jillian Michaels DVD’s in my basement), I cooked a healthy meal, we reviewed a “strategy” for the week, and physically wrote down and shared our goals. During this time, I lost a significant amount of weight – I think I was down to about 180 pounds and a size 12. I felt great, accepted responsibility and had accountability for my choices. When we stopped meeting regularly, I slowly but surely put all of the weight back on, plus an additional ten pounds.
This is a different time in my life and in those people who are physically close to me. Work schedules, kid schedules, proximity and a need for down-time have imposed themselves, and it’s no longer possible to commit to physically being together weekly. So after about a year of hemming and hawing, the idea for the blog came to me. If anyone actually reads this and finds it helpful, I hope we can become a supportive community for each other. Your feedback will help me remain accountable and feel inspired to connect with others this way.
So enough of the back story. This week, I am launching a 17-week initiative based on The Spark Diet. This is the basic structure that I followed and learned from in the past, so I’m revisiting in. Each week, I will link you to the basic concept that I’m focusing on, and give you some thoughts and resources surrounding it. So here goes nothing.
The first six weeks of this program are called the “Fast Break.” Each week focuses on a simple, attainable change to apply to your lifestyle. The goals of this timeframe are to build confidence, gain momentum, and get used to the idea of this new lifestyle.
STRATEGY: Our bite-sized nugget of knowledge this week poses the question, “Do you know what you’re eating?” The whole point of this week is to actually become accountable for the food you’re consuming by recording it. I have made the commitment to myself that I will track all of my food using My Fitness Pal. If you prefer to use pen and paper, use it (although in this day and age, it’s so easy to plug things in using aps on your phone or computer, it seems like a lot of work to figure it out on paper – PLUS you might give yourself a little more wiggle-room than the counter will!). Here are some of the most well known trackers out there – click on one and use it, okay?
As I mentioned, although I respond well to the articles and resources on Spark People, I prefer My Fitness Pal for my tracking. I was able to sync my FitBit with My Fitness Pal, so now it automatically updates my calories burned, which I love. I also find the My Fitness Pal food catalog to be easier to use/find the foods I’m eating. All of this is up for debate, the main thing is JUST USE ONE OF THEM!
MOVE YOUR BODY CHALLENGE: I challenge you to do these mini-workouts six out of the seven days this week. Shouldn’t take more than 5 minutes each, and if you’re living the the frozen tundra of Wisconsin like me, you can do all of them indoors!
WHAT AM I GOING TO EAT? I challenge you to start thinking about things that you already like in a different way. For a while, I was hooked on Starbucks stops. A great choice at Starbucks is their Protein Box, but even better, you can make it yourself! Check out my instructions for this homemade Protein Box!
MOTIVATION: I suspect you don’t even need a Monday – any day will do! Make this week about knowing what you’re eating so you can be ready for more positive change next week!