In case you were wondering, I had a fabulous time in NYC. But more on that later. The new year is all-too-rapidly approaching, so I’d like to tackle that topic first.
Warning: This post is long, but I really opened my heart and soul.
I know that New Year’s Resolutions often get a bad reputation. And I can see why. I have resolved to lose weight more times than I can count and ended the year fatter that I started it.
However, I am a big believer in goal setting. As you may have noticed on the blog, I’ve recently been setting daily or weekly goals and checking in on whether I reached these goals. Small and reachable gals help to keep me accountable and feel like bigger and seemingly out-of-reach goals are actually reachable.
So – drumroll please – I’ve decided to a create a list of goals for the new year. They aren’t necessarily things that I resolve to do beginning on January 1st, but rather objectives that I would love to achieve by the end of the year.
- Workout at least four times every week. For me, this is a reasonable goal. Although I’d love to be able to workout six days and rest one, I have found that a lofty goal like this just stresses me out and makes me feel guilty when I don’t reach it.
- Make sure to incorporate both cardio and strength training into my fitness routine. In the past, when I taught Jazzercise, this wasn’t really a huge struggle for me, because each class incorporated about 40 minutes of dance-based cardio and 20 minutes of strength training – one song each for the arms, the abs, and the glutes and sometimes an extra. Now, I generally try to hit up a class that I enjoy at my gym like Zumba, hip hop, or spin. While these classes provide some heart pumping cardio, they don’t include a strength training component. I have learned how vital strength training is for weight loss and maintenance. Therefore, I’d like to make more of an effort to find some great strength training circuits from blogs, Pinterest, etc. and incorporate them regularly into my workouts.
- Drink 64 ounces of water daily. While I don’t really drink much soda anymore and rely mostly on drinks like Vitamin Water Zero for my liquid intake, I often find that I am simply not drinking enough, period. While it is not realistic for me to give up my favorite flavored drinks, I would like to increase my plain-old-water intake and just make sure that I am staying hydrated.
- Work on establishing an 80-20 approach to healthy eating. This is something that absolutely, positively does not come easily for me. As I shared recently, I struggle with binge eating. And although I was able to lose over 65 pounds last year, it was because I committed myself to 100% healthy eating. This might sound great in theory, but in reality, the fact that I never allowed myself to indulge was disastrous. It meant that the minute that I gave myself a “week off” for my 21st birthday, I spiraled back out of the control into many of my old unhealthy habits. Once and for all, I’d love to establish a healthy approaching to eating in which I make healthy choices about 80% of the time and allow myself to indulge the other 20% of the time. I know that this won’t happen overnight, but it’s a pattern that I would love to work towards in 2012.
- Reach a healthy weight for my height. Although I am not a huge fan of the number on the scale and would rather gauge my happy weight based on how comfortable I feel with my body, I would like to reach a weight in which my BMI falls into the “healthy” range. In September 2010, I was about 7 pounds away from this weight, but I never quite got there. I have also gained about 15 pounds since that time. In 2012, I would like to get to my healthy weight. Although this might not be my “feel great weight,” it would be a major step in the right direction, and right now, that is all I can ask for.
- Make myself my number one priority. This might sound like a selfish goal, but I have absolutely come to realize that the only way that I can be the best daughter, sister, girlfriend, friend, employee, teacher, and person is to make sure that I am first and foremost happy with myself. I am constantly striving to please others, which often means putting my own needs and wants on the back burner. I think that this is the number one reason that I never made it to my goal weight. I was always making time for my family, friends, and boyfriend, and work and school commitments, which meant sacrificing trips to the gym and Weight Watchers meetings. Although the WW program did great things for me, I no longer believe that it is what I need to be healthy. Still, I need to set aside time for myself to grocery shop for good foods, prepare healthy meals, blog when I need or want to share my feelings and experiences, hang out with my girl friends and vent, and work out. Lately, I find myself skipping these activities in lieu of spending an afternoon on the couch with Brad or picking up an extra shift at work or babysitting job. However, as important as it is to me to spend time with those that I love or make extra money, it is not as important as it is for me to be healthy and happy.
- Avoid negative self-talk. Although losing weight helped me to make me a healthier individual overall and I have no regrets there, I actually believe that it negatively affected my overall body image and perception of myself. Let me try to explain. See, in the past, I never really felt guilty about eating poorly. I worked out at Jazzercise a lot, and although I was very overweight and binge ate, that’s just how it was. One day, I got sick of it and joined Weight Watchers. And after losing 65 pounds, I am absolutely terrified of getting fat again. Every time that I binge, eat fast food or dessert, or overeat at a holiday gathering, I feel sick to my stomach – not just because of what I ate, but because I don’t want to the “fat girl” again. Still, this doesn’t prevent me from doing all of the above. I have only gone up one pants size since foregoing my ultra-healthy ways, but it is nonetheless scary to me. In 2012, I want to turn my life around and become a healthy person, so that this negative self-talk stops taking over my life. I think that a combination of solid 80-20 eating and regular workouts will help me do this. Like I’ve said before, I know it won’t happen overnight, but I’m hoping that I can help make it happen in 365 days.
- Stop biting my nails. Ok, breathe, this one is a little less “heavy” than the past few. I am thinking – or hoping – that I have a head start on this one. I got my first shellac manicure last week which has basically prevented me from biting my nails for the past 7 days. They on their way. However, I have gone as many as three weeks without biting in the past and then returned to my gnawing ways, so I’m hoping to banish the bad habit for good this year. I know that this might sound like a silly goal, but I am a firm believer that feeling like I am “well-polished” from head to toe will help to improve my overall body image.
- Rock my teaching internship.
- Graduate college.
- Procure my first “real” teaching job.
I think that these goals are pretty self-explanatory, but in addition to turning my life around health-wise in 2012, I am embarking on life in the real world. I begin my internship in January 16th, and I couldn’t be more excited. Of course, I am also nervous, but I am learning more and more that it is okay – and better yet, good – to make mistakes, because all that I can do is learn from them. I graduate in May, but will continue at my internship until the end of the school year in June. I’ll also be actively searching for interviewing for a teaching job during this time.
I could go on for days with specific goals for myself, but I think that this is a reasonable number of them that I can sensibly reach in the upcoming year. I want 2012 to be my year to start my life as a healthy, professional young woman.
What are your goals or resolutions for 2012? Now that I’ve shared mine, I would love to hear yours!