I am one week into my health and fitness challenge for February. For those who are not aware, I am embarking on a 12-month Happiness Project, with a different challenge each month designed to brighten my mood. My challenge for February is to work on my health and fitness. That’s not necessarily to say I intend to lose loads of weight or run a marathon or start lifting massive weights; I just want to be more active and eat a more healthy diet.
One week down
My plan for this challenge was not to make too many drastic changes that I couldn’t maintain long term. This week though, I have discovered that I do need to make some changes, or this is never going to work. Specifically, I need to start making space in my day for exercise, and get into more of a routine with food. It’s no good waiting until S is in bed at 7pm before I think about doing some exercise and by the way, what’s for tea.
My exercise this week has been haphazard, to say the least. I have my Davina dvd, and have managed to do exercises on some days – but I think I gave myself too many days off! One day last week S was off nursery and busy drawing, so I thought I would commandeer use of the TV for a measly seven minutes in order to do a workout… from this I learned that one should not attempt aerobics with a toddler in the house. S thought it was a game, and kept trying to go “under the tunnel” between my legs while I was trying to jump around!
I’ve been trying to be more active generally, so more walking and jumping around with S. I do feel like I’ve done more walking, but I could probably manage to do a bit more.
This week, my plan is to keep more of a record of what I’ve done, and to make the effort to be active every day.
I set myself a goal last week to halve the amount of Coca Cola I was drinking each day. I didn’t quite manage to succeed at that, but I did cut back considerably and am still working on it.
Food wise, I have done fairly well. I’ve been cooking proper meals and eating more vegetables; I even managed breakfast on several mornings. I make breakfast for S every day, and usually just sit with a coffee while she eats. Since I’m sitting there any way, it seems bonkers not to just join in. My problem is finding something that tastes good and will keep me full; I made granola, but (and I am aware of how silly this sounds) it’s just too much chewing effort first thing in the morning! I still have work to do, on the breakfasty front.
Considering I spend a lot of time at home, I tend to skip a lot of breakfasts and lunches. Sometimes that’s because there is no food in the house; most of the time it’s because I’m just a but uninspired, and can’t think of anything I want to eat – so I go hungry, and then eat some Pom Bears later.
My plan for this week is to drink more water, and to work harder on planning what to eat and when… and to cut down on the teddy bear crisp stealing (before S catches me at it).
I’ve been listening to my Slimpod every night for about 3 weeks now and I do feel like my eating habits have changed. Although I’m still eating a fair bit of junk, it has decreased a lot. And if I’m honest, the junk I am eating is more to do with a lack of planning than the actual desire to eat rubbish. It often doesn’t cross my mind to find something for tea until S is in bed and I’m hungry. When I’m working in an office out of town, it doesn’t occur to me that I’ll need some lunch to take with me until I’m about to go out the door, so I have little choice but to buy a sandwich at the shop on my way to catch the bus. I think I would find it easier to make healthy choices with my food, if I put a little thought in beforehand!
I do feel like the Slimpod has helped me to change my mind on a lot of things. These days I go and loiter in the chocolate aisle of the supermarket, but usually leave feeling uninspired. I rarely find anything that’s genuinely worth making an unhealthy choice for. The problem is that I’m still feeling like I want “a treat” and can think of nothing to have if I don’t have chocolate or some sort of pudding. I did buy some blood oranges the other day as a special treat – but they’re so expensive, I couldn’t keep a steady supply of them in my fridge!
Weight & Measurements
Considering I’ve not made much of an effort, I think I’ve done okay on the weight & measurements front:
Weight: Last week: 12st 2lb. This week: 12st 1lb = 1lb loss (I can’t help but think how much more I could have lost if I tried harder!)
Bust: Last week: 40″ This week: 39″ = 1 inch lost
Waist: Last week: 37″ This week: 36.5″ = half an inch lost
Hips: Last week: 41″ This week: 40″ = 1 inch lost
Thigh: Last week: 24″ This week: 24″ = no change
Calf: Last week: 15″ This week: 14.5″ = half an inch lost
Over all, one pound down and 3 inches off!
Just a quick note about these measurements: I have an umbilical hernia, which means that aside from the flab around my middle, there is a lump there. My main hope through all of this is that I can strengthen my abdominal muscles and stop the hernia from being quite so painful and lumpy. Therefore, while I’ve only taken half an inch off my waist, I am more pleased about this than anything else!
Aaccording to the NHS BMI Calculator, my BMI has gone from 30.1 to 29.6 – though I’m generally of the opinion that BMI is not a great way of measuring how one is doing with such things
My lovely chart hasn’t changed much, with only one pound lost:
Is It Making Me Happy?
The other evening, I put S to bed and came downstairs to do a Davina workout. The workouts are only seven minutes long, and I ended up doing three of them, before sitting down with a nice bowl of home made chicken casserole. It struck me at that point that actually, 21 minutes of jumping about like a loon can make me feel a lot better – even if I’ve not lost a ton of weight or run a marathon or dropped a jeans size (just yet!)
I think I’ve always known that being more active and eating more healthily could improve my mood – it’s obvious, really. And yet, I can happily sit on my sofa munching my way through endless bars of chocolate, whilst thinking “yeah, if I eat some veggies and go for a walk I’ll feel better… lemme just finish this bar of chocolate/tv show/pizza first…” Now that I’m actually doing something about it, I do feel more positive, generally.