Monday, May 30, 2016

What It Takes

Can you believe this weather? Across the nation it's been crazy. Here in New England it's been like summer. Temperatures in the 80's to low 90's, with high humidity. Except for today, there has been very little rain. Overall, it's been A+ weather.

My husband and I took a little trip to Boston this weekend. He did the Run to Remember.  It's a 5 mile or half marathon run.  Brian, his running buddy Joe, and my sister-in-law Maria did the five mile run.  They did awesome, too! I was so proud of them.

I don't run. The pounding on the pavement is not ideal for an arthritic knee. I do okay most of the time, but running does me in every time.
Brian, Joe & I have matching shirts in honor of Officer Kevin Ambrose, a Springfield Police Officer killed in the line of duty 6/4/2012. 
Brian has been training for this run all year. Adding intervals and core work to his training regimen has made a tremendous difference. Now he says, "I hate to admit it, but I actually think I might like running."  He's lost over 20 lbs this year too. 

This has gotten me to thinking...transformation requires change. You are probably thinking, "Duh, of course!" But seriously, if you want to lose weight, get into shape, run 5 miles, ride  a 100 mile bike ride, or even switch careers... You have to change. You can't say, "I want to lose weight," and then go about living life the way you always have and wonder why there is no change.  

Furthermore, you can't expect to sustain any change by trying a "quick fix remedy" that may result in rapid weight loss.  Quick fixes don't work for the long haul, they aren't healthy, and they are not sustainable.  

What it takes is transformation of the mind, as well as a change in your behavior. You have to think differently about exercise and nutrition. Instead of  thinking you deserve a fattening treat or  you are too tired or sore to exercise, you have make the decision to be selective on your food choices, to get up and move your body.
I went for a 25 mile ride when we got home yesterday.  It was 87-90 degrees, but a fantastic ride none the less!
I can't begin to tell you how much I have learned about nutrition and exercise since I started this journey. I can tell you, I continually learn. This weekend, I asked. Brian if he wanted me to pack us lunch for Saturday. He said, "No, we can just grab something."

At first, I thought, "Good, easier for me." But as I thought about it, I realized that by leaving lunch to chance, I ran the risk of not eating or eating complete crap. So before we left, I threw a salad together for me and made him a sandwich. It wasn't about the money, it was about making a smart food choice. I knew we were going out for dinner that night and wouldn't have access to my refrigerator of healthy snacks. To me this was smart.
I was so glad I brought my lunch, otherwise we would not have had lunch until after 3:00 p.m.
This is a transformation. I have not eliminated any foods from my diet. I don't avoid dairy, carbs, or meat. I don't eat low fat or fat free foods. I don't drink shakes for every other meal.  (Although I do enjoy a protein shake a few times /week.) what has happened, is a change in how I think. That's what it takes. That's where the rubber meets the road.

Do not be conformed to this present world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may test and approve what is the will of God -- what is good and well-pleasing and perfect.
Romans 12:2

So if you are serious about losing weight AND keeping it off. If you want to be healthier.  You have to change the way you live. More importantly, you have to change the way you think about food and exercise. 

I got in a workout at the hotel gym on Saturday night.  It was the nicest fitness facility I've ever seen in a hotel.
So, how do you start?  Start by going grocery shopping and loading up on lots of fresh fruits, vegetables and lean protein.  Plan your meals for the week.  There is nothing wrong with eating the same thing for breakfast or lunch every day.  Make a decision to workout every day.  Yes, every day.  The biggest mistake you can make is to overdo it and then quit.  Do 10 minutes of squats and interval training every day and make sure you get in 10,000 steps.  If you take a walk, you don't have to walk fast.  Try a 3-4 mph pace.  The trick is to move your body, not run a marathon.  Tell yourself, "I am going to do this."  And do NOT let yourself say, "I'm too tired." OR "I can't do this."  OR "I deserve this piece of cake."
Things you see on a walk...I just LOVE this house.  Seriously, they know how to do it right.  In the left side of the picture are an American flag.  Under the flag is a Nativity scene.  By the trees are a family of green aliens and closer to the house are a couple of Candy Land lollipops.  Don't be afraid to take a walk and enjoy the sights.  I walk the puppy often and love the new things I observe along the way.

I will be focusing on this topic over the next few weeks.  Transformation and change do not happen naturally.  Our bodies and our minds want to revert back to a state where they are most comfortable.  Change must be deliberate.  Tune back soon for more on this subject...

Question for you:  (Answer in the comments below.)
What did you do this Memorial Day Weekend?

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