Category Archives: Goal Progress

Spring Time! Start Fresh!

Back in January, I made huge proclamations that I was going to be better about New Year’s Resolutions by not calling them that, and making monthly/quarterly goals, and sticking to them because I have a blog goddammit and it will keep me accountable!

Fast forward to now. I haven’t written much about my goals, and to be honest it’s because I haven’t been super focused on them. BUT! I’m not really that upset about it. While it would have been nice to say I met all my goals, (I DID meet some of them), I’ve really just been having fun, keeping busy, and not dwelling on what I should be doing.

And the weird part?

Through doing what feels natural and good in my life, I’ve done a pretty good job of sticking to my initial Q1 goals. Let’s recap:

1. Get serious about training my dog, and learning more about dog training in general – admittedly, I didn’t spend a ton of time on this in the past few months, and Jameson can always use more training, but we have gotten serious about doggy time-outs when he misbehaves (read: barks out the window), and it’s not perfect, but it seems to be working! I also met a girl that rides at my barn who trains dogs, and she is coming over on Sunday to see if she can help us with his barking problem, and his “go nuts when someone comes to the door” problem.

2. Take more (and better) pictures for my blog – Okay, full disclosure: pretty much immediately after I made this goal, I talked to Dan and sort of decided that he will be my photographer. I enjoy photography, and with more time to focus on it, I think I could get pretty good at it. But really, he already has an interest in it, is good at it, and wants to help. By involving him this way, it gets us both interested and involved in each others’ hobbies, which is a great way to have separate hobbies but still stay connected.  So, I didn’t acquire a new skill, but I’m still calling this one a win. And for the record, I finally backed up my iPhone photos onto my Mac last weekend! Finally I have space on my phone for music and apps!

3. Get in shape (for my life and my wedding) – this is one of the areas where I’m pretty pleased with how I’ve naturally moved forward, without obsessing and really focusing in on the details. In the past few weeks, I have been admittedly crazy busy, and haven’t made it into an actual gym recently. But with that said, my eating habits have improved greatly (I actually look forward to my salads, fruits and veggies – more on that later), and I’ve been exercising fairly regularly. I’ve been horseback riding at least twice a week, and now that the weather is getting nicer (seriously, Spring, get your act together) I’ve been taking Jameson on longer walks in the evenings. I feel better, have more energy, and when the dog is tired, I sleep better. 🙂

4. Plan for the future – I started some of the things I mentioned in my last post about this, like making a 2 year plan in Excel and creating a business plan. While I’ve sort of got these things under wraps, what I’ve really got are a lot of hopes and dreams that involve not sitting at a desk for 9-10 hours a day. Things are slowly coming together into a solid plan, though, and I’m confident that after the wedding (!!) I’ll have more time, energy, and money to focus on them.

So, now that I’ve word vomited all over the place, here’s what I’m going to focus on for the next few months:

  • Katie’s Wedding! It’s so soon! I’m so stoked!
  • Getting my sleep schedule/patterns more consistent.
  • My garden – I can’t wait to start it this year!
  • My pup and pony – training, exercising, and spending quality time.
  • Planning my wedding 🙂
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Getting Committed

Happy February! The shortest month filled with the most love. Or something.

You guys. I won a contest! I’ve never won anything before, but I won a blog contest! Cassie from Back To Her Roots had a giveaway for 10 free days of “Accountability Coaching” from Krissie over at Commited Coaching. Krissie is a certified running coach (whatever that means), but she also focuses on helping people meet their fitness, food, and lifestyle goals. I’ve only had one phone call with her once so far, but I’m excited for what the next 10 days will bring!

I told Krissie my goals (get in shape for wedding, form healthier eating and workout habits, etc.) and she’s already been super helpful, just giving me tips on how I can be more efficient and more effective. For the first ten days of February, the plan is for me to tell her my plan day to day in the way of food and exercise, and she’ll text, call, or email me once a day to see how I’m doing. If for some reason I’m not hitting my goals, she’s not there to “punish” or “shame” me, she’s just there to help me figure out what’s going on and see if from an outside perspective she has any insight on how I could change my habits for the better.

You guys. I’m stoked.

I don’t really know what to expect. I don’t know if I’ll be successful or if I’ll want to continue on with Krissie after my ten free days. But I do know she has some  really good ideas up her sleeve that I’m excited to hear.

I’ll keep you posted!

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The Dumps

I am officially down in them.

This post was supposed to be about how excited I am to jump on the healthy lifestyle bandwagon. Look at these cool new apps I found by following healthy living blogs! I can track my water intake! I can track my caloric intake! I can track my exercise goals! I’m gonna be healthy and skinny and fit in no time! And I’m going to ENJOY doing it!

But, that’s not how I feel. Instead, I feel sad. And a little mad. And kind of frustrated.

Now, just as a general disclaimer – I know I’m not immensely overweight. I know I don’t have to lose any weight to be a healthy, happy person. But I want to. I want to look and feel great and I want to do it the right way. Not the crash diet, lose 20 pounds but gain it all back after my first cupcake in 6 months way.

So why am I so sad? Because I feel like life’s not fair. (Cry me a river, I know.)

By counting calories I know my eating habits aren’t terrible. I’m always around the 1500 a day mark, sometimes more, some times less, which is pretty average for someone my size.  I actually enjoy eating vegetables, and eating a salad isn’t a chore for me. My exercise habits, while admittedly could be better, aren’t terrible. But at the end of the day, I know I still have changing and growing to do. I need to monitor my portion sizes, and I need to be more cognitive of what I eat, not just how much of it.

The reason this makes me sad, mad, frustrated, etc is because, if you hadn’t gathered, I love food. I love cooking and baking and EATING; and while I enjoy healthy meals, I also enjoy unhealthy ones. White rice? Sign me up. Pasta? For days. Don’t even talk to me about cookies and cake and CHOCOLATE.

I know there are healthy alternatives for all these things. Cognitively, in my little brain, I know it. But emotionally and realistically? I don’t want alternatives. I like these things that are bad for me, and it makes me mad that I have to make sacrifices. I know this sounds completely unreasonable. I’m aware. But them’s the facts.

So, what am I going to do about it? Well, I am going to track my water intake. I am going to track my calories, and my exercise, and I am going to make sacrifices. But, cold turkey’s never the way for me, so while I make some changes and some sacrifices, I’ll allow myself a few indulgences, too. Not too many. But maybe, just maybe, I’ll get to the point where I like the “healthy” stuff more than the “good” stuff. Fingers crossed… wish me luck.

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Goal Update … Click It?

Hello friends! It’s past the halfway point of January, so I thought I’d give you a quick update on where I stand with my goals. Warning… it’s not pretty. But, it could be worse!

You may recall that my first due date was on Tuesday, the 15th. It was admittedly the easiest goal on my list… and I didn’t exactly accomplish it. Oops. The goal was to put my training clicker on a bracelet so it was easily accessible and so I could use it whenever Jameson starts acting like a brat. (My baby, act like a brat? Never!)

8388573814_077750d0b3_hWell… the clicker didn’t make it on to a bracelet, but it DID make it onto my coffee table! Baby steps. And I’ll even call it a win (maybe a tie? work with me here) because it achieved the goal of being easily accessible. We’re working hard on the no barking thing, and I think it’s very slowly starting to sink in. You bark, you go to time out on the stairs. We’re having to do less and less time outs, so I think it’s working! Here’s to actually accomplishing goals and doing what we say we’re going to…

I’m not going to go into detail here, but you may have noticed some extra awesome pictures on the blog lately. Dan has taken it upon himself to be my own personal photographer, and I think he’s doing a damn good job. 🙂

 

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HALP! Fitness Tips Needed

Happy Thursday!

Who am I kidding, Thursdays are never happy. They’re not Friday and they don’t get the honor of being called “Hump Day”. So, just plain Thursday, everybody!

You will be pleased to know (or at least pretend to be pleased for me) that I went back to the gym last night for another Body Step class, and I TOTALLY ROCKED IT. It was like, 1,000,000x better than Monday, when I almost fainted/barfed/fell down doing a very similar class. It was a different instructor, so I’m not sure if that had anything to do with it. I also hydrated and ate my afternoon snack, so, win all around! Thing is, I’m not sore today, and I really thought I would be based on how hard I felt like I was working. Any fitness gurus out there have anything to say about that? Does it mean I’m not working hard enough? Those muscle groups are already in good shape? I’m doing it wrong?

When I go to the gym, I pretty much exclusively go to the classes they offer. The cardio classes (step, attack, combat) are my favorite, although I have been known to take a Body Pump class now and then. A big problem I’m running into is the tendinitis in my elbow. My main goal is to tone up and loose a few pounds, and I really wanted to tone up my arms. (After all, it’s technically the only part of me that won’t be covered by a wedding dress.) *SPOILER ALERT – my wedding dress does not have long sleeves.* I’m really struggling with how I can make this happen while still being able to hold a glass of water the next day. Push-ups make my elbow lock, body pump really aggravates it, so I’m kind of at a loss.

Today I’m going to forego the body pump class and try to create my own circuit using the machines at the gym. My hope is that some of them will be ergonomic enough that they won’t really upset my arm. That said, if any of you super fit people who like, understand the gym a little, have any insight as to what I can do to work my upper body without wanting my arm to fall off, PLEASE SHARE YOUR INSIGHT! I’m also looking for good apps/websites/circuits that I can do that will help me achieve my goals. Leave your thoughts in the comments!

Thanks friends – have a good-enough Thursday!

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First Day Back

… is always the hardest.

So. Um. Remember yesterday when I said how I didn’t regret watching Gossip Girl alllllll day long on Sunday?

Don’t worry I still don’t.

But… the rest of my body does.

I went back to the gym for the first time since before Christmas. While I was under the impression that walking a few miles every now and then and horseback riding once a week was enough to keep me in the semi-decent shape I was in before the holidays… I was sorely mistaken.

At Body Step yesterday I was so pumped and ready to get started with my workouts again. I made it through the warm up and after the first peak and then I thought I was going to die. And then I felt like I was going to die at least 5 more times in the hour. And I forgot my water bottle so I had to keep leaving to get water and it was really embarrassing. Did I mention that I didn’t eat my afternoon snack and my stomach started growling around 4 pm so my blood sugar was really low and I kept getting dizzy? And also how I haven’t been to the gym since before Christmas.

All of these things added up equals one really terrible workout. BUT. These things happen, and if every bad workout made people quit there would be no one in the gym come March. Wait… are we just talking about regular New Year’s resolutioners here? (Just kidding. But really guys.) I’ll try again later this week and I’ll make sure to eat first and drink enough water and mentally prepare and not stand in the front center of the class next time, just in case.

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Monthly Goals

Notice how I did NOT say resolutions. Because seriously ya’ll, who can stick to a plan for 12 whole months? Not this girl.

Like many other well-meaning humans, making, tracking, and sticking to resolutions is not my forte. But this year… THIS year, I’ve got a plan. Sort of. This year I’m breaking down my resolutions  goals into more manageable monthly chunks. I think a lot of people attempt this by saying, “in January I will do X, in February I will do Y,” and honestly that was going to be my approach originally. But the more I think about my goals and my life, that just didn’t make sense for me. What kind of goal can be achieved in one month, and then not thought of the next? I couldn’t think of any. My plan is to “chunk” out my goals, and I’m going to focus on three month increments. If businesses can set goals quarterly, by golly so can I!

So how is this going to work? Many of my goals are still formulating, so it is absolutely going to be a work in progress. To start, here are the goals that are in the forefront of my brain at the moment:

1. Get serious about training my dog, and learning more about dog training in general – I’ve been interested in dog training for about three years now, and while my pooch definitely isn’t the mangiest mutt around, he has some work to do. (Seriously, do you need to bark at every squirrel? Every single one?)  Click-it or Ticket. Okay, I borrowed the phrase from the Virginia Department of Police, but it works here too! I’m all about Clicker Training and positive reinforcement. We’ve really been able to help Jameson figure out how to get what he wants by behaving, rather than grabbing, jumping, and being a pill. Like I said, our main obstacle currently is barking, and I need to be at the ready with my clicker and treat bag whenever an opportunity presents itself. So for dog training, here are my goals from January – March.:

  • Put my clicker on a bracelet that is easily accessible when I walk in the door. As soon as I get home, grab the clicker and the (fully stocked) treat bag, and reward the good behavior. Due date: January 15th, 2013.
  • Read at least one new book about dog training, dog behavior, or dog psychology by the end of the quarter. Due date: March 31, 2013.

2. Take more (and better) pictures for my blog – This is something that, plan or not, is going to be really hard for me, for a few reasons. One, the only photo-taking device I have is  my iPhone. While it is trusty and wonderful and I love it more than life itself, the pictures come out… less than spectacular. Two, I just always forget. Either my hands are too messy from whatever I’m cooking, or I’m having too much fun to remember to take the extra step of snapping pics, I just never do it right. So, onward and upward:

  • Ask Dan if I can borrow his really fancy DSLR camera if I promise not to shatter any more lensesDue date: Today! (January 4, 2013). (So D, what do you say?)
  • Learn how to use said fancy DSLR camera… which will be a much longer term goal. I’ll start by reading blogs, books, and watching tutorials online. I may also ask for some help from some friends… Bueller… Bueller…? Due date: Have a solid understanding of how the beast works by February 15, 2013.
  • Back up current iPhone pictures to my computer and wipe them off my phone for space. Due date: January 31, 2013.
  • Take at least five quality pictures a week, with iPhone or fancy camera. Due date: Every week!

3. Get in shape (for my life and my wedding) – I’ve been pretty good about going to the gym and working out on and off for the past few months, along with eating better. Over the past three weeks or so I’ve fallen off the wagon a bit, so:

  • Get to the gym for cardio and/or cross training at least 4x a week. Due date: Every week!
  • Eat at least one salad a week. Due date: Every week!
  • Eat out (lunch or dinner) only 2x a week. Due date: Every week!

4. Plan for the future – this one might sound cliche, but it’s something I really want/need to do. I have quite a few ideas/plans for my life that are going to remain just ideas if I don’t get my act together. I’m pretty sure I’m not meant for the cubicle life, and I have some things I want to do on my own, so I need an escape plan! How am I going to accomplish all the awesome things I want to do without a plan?

  • Make a solid 2 year plan in Excel outlining what steps I need to take and when to get where I want to be. Due date: March 1, 2013.
  • Create a business plan for my brainchild and work it into the plan. Due date: March 31, 2013.

Some other goals I think I may pursue in coming months:

  • Gardening – planting grass in the front yard and planting a vegetable garden
  • Offering and following through with some day-of wedding coordination for some engaged friends for experience
  • GETTING MARRIED (I guess we should focus on that one some, huh?)

The beauty of this new quarterly strategy is that I have literally no idea where I’ll be come April 1st. It will be like a NEW New Year’s celebration, where I can reflect on the goals I set and make new ones based on where my life has taken me. I will be asking you guys to keep me accountable, and I’m going to start a new mini-series on the blog to keep you posted on how I’m doing. Let me know if you have good ways for sticking to goals, if you know anyone who’s handy with a camera, or if you just want to share your own goals and accomplishments! 

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