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Ten Things I Learned: #1 Setting Goals for Success and Failure

Setting Goals

I’m Competitive

I’m competitive, very competitive. Some of you reading this, if you know me, chuckled a little and thought that was probably an understatement. I like to win. And because of that tend to only do things I’m good at. This is something I’m working on.  But, truth be told, I tend to find I really like to do things that involve competing in some form. Board games, cards, fantasy football, and driving carpool all provide opportunities to win. Yes, you can win at carpool and the drive there. What’s the big deal if everyone else in the “game” doesn’t even know that it’s a game?

Setting Goals

Anyway, back to the Crazy Idea. Last year as I was thinking up this crazy idea I knew that in order to stay motivated I would need to set some goals, some crazy goals. Goals like losing 70 pounds and running a marathon. Goals that would push me hard and be difficult to reach.

As the year progressed I realized that I hadn’t done the best job of setting goals, they weren’t S.M.A.R.T. goals. Sure they were specific, measurable, actionable and time-bound, but they weren’t realistic. I wasn’t a runner and when I tried to run, my knees wanted nothing to do with it. So I had to re-evaluate a bit and decide that a marathon or even a half-marathon just want going to happen. We changed my training up to focus more on strength training rather than on reaching running goals. This in turn affected my weight loss as I added muscle and lost fat. So in the end, I didn’t reach my goal of a marathon or of losing 70 pounds (though I believe I did come close to that in fat loss, but the muscle gain off-set the total weight loss). [Read more...]

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Ten Things I Learned: #2 Make A New Plan, Stan

Yes, yes I did quote Saint Paul Simon in the blog post title. And as I type this Julie pointed out by doing so I just dated myself. But I’m okay with that.

But as Mr. Simon suggests, it’s time to make a new plan, a plan for your new healthy lifestyle. That’s the number two thing I learned from this crazy idea – healthy requires a plan, especially at my age. I once was healthy, naturally, or so I thought. Truth was, I ate junk, but was active enough I looked and felt healthy. But nature ran it’s course. And I did nothing to combat it. The extent of my plan was to not think about it and go along for the ride. After all, it was natural, right! Why fight it?

But last year I decided if I wanted a different course for my life I had to have a plan. I had to know where I wanted to be and how to get there. You wouldn’t just jump in my car and take off for a new destination having no map (see how I dated myself again there). You would figure out the best route and how long it would take to get there. So it is with your health.

As you approach 2013 what is your plan? If you’re like I was ,you may not even know where to begin. That’s why I asked Ed from Ed’s Gym to help not only with the map, but to jump in the car and go along for the ride.

So, three questions for you.

Where are you now? Where to you want to go? What do you need to do to get there?

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Ten Things I Learned: #3 Even the Lone Ranger Had Tonto

Even The Lone Ranger Had Tonto

 

We live in a world where making it “on your own” is rewarded, even glorified. But when it comes to making huge life changes, going it alone is hard, if not near impossible. Everyone needs support, shoot, even the Lone Ranger had Tonto.

Looking back over the past year, I can’t even begin to imagine how I would have done it alone. If I was left to face it all by myself, I’m not sure I would have stuck with it to be honest.

Family Support

Without the support of Julie and the kids I would have been nearly impossible to complete the Whole 30 or stick with a Paleo diet. They not only did it with me, but were encouraging along the way. Sure, they weren’t always excited about our limited food choices, but they never lost sight of the big picture and didn’t complain much. If you’re going to make a drastic diet change like I did, you’ve got to get those closest to you behind the vision. [Read more...]

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Ten Things I Learned: #4 – Travel And A Healthy Routine

flight

 

On The Road Again

This year we did more travelling than we ever have. Rocky Mountain Media Group trips took us to Seattle, Oregon, Nashville, Pittsburgh and Steamboat Springs. Those coupled with family trips presented challenges to keeping a healthy routine.

Eating On The Road

When you are used to eating all natural, gluten free, paleo meals, travel can get tricky. Being prepared and planning ahead is the key. Do some research on the area you are visiting to find out what restaurants offer options that fit with your plan. And plan to take some snacks with you. When I travel, fresh fruit and nuts are always handy in my bag. Sometimes you will find yourself in situations where there aren’t good options. But again, planning ahead can help. One meal off plan won’t do much damage, but when that one leads to two than five it can. Make the best of the situation and don’t let it de-rail the work you have put in. [Read more...]

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Ten Things I Learned – #5 The Secret To Losing Weight

One of the things I learned during this Crazy Idea is that there is a secret to losing weight. I know for many of you this is going to come as a huge shock, so brace yourselves.

The Secret to Losing Weight

The secret to losing weight

The secret to losing weight is eating better and exercising. That’s it. Shocking, I know.

As I’ve changed my diet and I eat less junk I feel better and have more energy. When I feel better and have more energy I feel like exercising more. When I exercise more I burn more calories than I eat and I lose weight.

Pretty simple – yet not so easy to do. It involves changing habits, it involves emotional connections with food and it involves getting off the couch and moving.

But if you really want to lose weight there are no more excuses. Go eat a salad and take a walk for starters.

 

 

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Kicking Off 2013 – Whole 30 Style

Today we’re taking a break from the “10 Things I Learned” series to give you an update on how 2012 ended and how we are moving forward in 2013.

In 2012 we have had some highs…

Jeff & Julie Highs

And we have had some lows…

Jeff and Julie Lows

The time between Thanksgiving and Christmas was a roller coaster where our nutrition and work out schedule was concerned.

[Read more...]

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Ten Things I Learned: #6 I Could Do Things I Only Dreamed About

So I already told you how Jeff’s Crazy Idea taught me in 2012 that eating healthy was expensive but worth it. But if you would have told me that getting our family on a nutritional plan would help me achieve a life long dream of hiking Pikes Peak I would have told you that you were crazy.

Summit of Pikes Peak

But I did it. I hiked that mound of dirt and rock that  I looked at for 15 years. And after climbing Pikes Peak I decided I wanted more. I hiked another 14er, Mount Bierstadt , only two weeks later. This time with the help of Jeff and our friends Bob and Bekah. I was becoming a mountain mama! [Read more...]

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Ten Things I Learned: #7 Eating Healthy Is Expensive But Worth It

I really can’t believe it has been almost a year since our family joined in on Jeff’s Crazy Idea. Some days the kids would say it seems like 20 years. Some days, not long at all.

I have learned some things that I had no idea about twelve months ago.

Like bacon and guacamole taste fantastic together. Who knew? Seriously, did you?

Guac and Bacon

But the one thing I am asked about constantly is “Doesn’t it cost a ton of money to eat well?”  The excuse I gave, and hear often when we talk about our lifestyle change is is this one:

“Our family simply can’t afford to eat that way.”

[Read more...]

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Ten Things I Learned – #8 There Is Still An Athlete In My Mind

I grew up playing sports

I grew up playing sports – all the time. Football with the neighborhood kids, shooting hoops for hours on end, I even tried baseball for a while and managed to find a spot on the tennis team at one point. From 4th grade through high school I played basketball in competitive leagues and for my school (and I am old enough to have played in the short-shorts era). While I might not have been great one, I was an athlete.

The athlete in my mind

Where did that athlete go?

[Read more...]

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Ten Things I Learned: #9 Healthy Becomes A Habit

Healthy Becomes A Habit

Healthy Habits

I had never thought about health as a habit. Smoking was a habit, biting your nails was a habit, but health? Than shortly after we ended the Whole 30 (and I figured out you can do anything for 30 days), I discovered that eating healthy had become a habit. It wasn’t something I obsessed thought about, it was just something we did. It had become our lifestyle, not something we went out of our way to do.

Developing Healthy Eating Habits

Experts say it takes anywhere from 30-60 days to develop a new habit. For it to be ingrained in your routine and become part of your lifestyle. We found that for us it was about 45-50 days of eating healthy. After that, we didn’t think about it as much. It wasn’t weird to go shopping and skip over all the junk. The cravings were gone, and it was the rare exception when we ate something that wasn’t Paleo. This was a huge change from the deep-fried, fast food, high carb diet we were used to. [Read more...]