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A WEEK OF HABIT

This past week my three teeny, tiny goals were these:

1  Eat oatmeal for breakfast several times.

2  Get to bed early at least twice.

3  Perform some kind of exercise every day.

HOW I DID!

Goal No. 1 EXCELLENT!  I ate my oatmeal several times this week. Not every morning, I’m still working on getting back to that, but several times.  I feel good about how I practiced this habit this week.

Goal No. 2  SCORE!!!  I was able to get to bed early two times this week, and boy, did I need it.  This hot muggy weather is killer, so I was glad to get in my jammies early, turn on the overhead fan, and snooze.

Goal No. 3 FAIL!  Other than moving around in an unorganized way, I have not exercised more than a few minutes this week.  I’m still experiencing a lot of pain in my leg and foot, some of it brought on by all the activity last week, when family was in town and we celebrated at our house.  This one will definitely be going on my list for next week. I need to do better.

RANDOM THOUGHTS I WOULD SHARE AS I ADULT THROUGH LIFE

Work has been tough.  A mixture of busy and boring, with some emotional stuff thrown in for good measure.  I’m not sure how I’m feeling about it all, but I’m trying to remain positive and help where I can.  We have several large projects in the works, with hard deadlines that always makes things interesting.  I sense that others are also, a little on edge.

The big news this week is that my co-worker won a cruise to the Caribbean that was GRAND PRIZE in a weight loss competition sponsored by our local gym.  She lost 34 pounds and beat out the second place entrant by a tenth of a pound.  Woohoo!  Regrettably, she has already returned to some of her previous eating habits. Still, I’m happy for her, and I’m hoping she can maintain the loss long-term.

I shared with you a few weeks ago that a spiritual development group had been recommended to me, didn’t I? I think I did.  Anyway, this group comes highly recommended and will be meeting through the fall and winter of 2016, and into the early spring of 2017.  I’m excited to think about the possibilities with this group, and will be sharing what I learn as I go along, so stay tuned for that.  We begin Sept 12th.

I’m going through another shedding phase with my hair!  My stylist mentioned it to me the other night when I got a trim.  I had noticed it myself, too. She asked that age-old question: Have you been feeling stressed lately?  Well, goodness, yes.  Haven’t we all?  The difference is that sometimes, because I’m so good at pushing the pressure back, my stress levels are only revealed through a loss of hair.  Ugh!  Remedy as I know it:  More early sleep nights, more culling of negativity from my circle of friends, more veggies in my diet, and more water throughout the day.  I think that spiritual reconnect I’ve been looking for from the group scheduled for this fall will help too.  I’m looking forward to that!

Frustration re: Passports.  I’ll finish this update by saying that I found the passport applications and photos I had misplaced, but still have not found our birth certificates.  Where is the world are they?  Only God knows these things.  In the meantime, I wait and keep searching for them. I know I put them someplace. Where, oh where is that place???!!

GOALS FOR NEXT WEEK — THE SAME AS LAST WEEK

1  Eat oatmeal for breakfast several times this week.

2  Get to bed early at least twice.

3  Perform some kind of exercise every day.

When have you found something tucked away in an unexpected place?  When has frustration found you?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Three Goals Thursday

Today slipped through my fingers like water passing over a pine bough that’s fallen into a high mountain stream. So quickly it ran!

If I don’t post my goals today, though, two weeks will have passed by without me doing what is important to me, so here they are.

THREE TEENY, TINY GOALS

This week I will endeavor to…

1  Eat oatmeal for breakfast several times.

2  Get to bed early at least twice.

3  Perform some kind of exercise every day.

These goals seem teeny, tiny enough, so I think they’ll work.

Final Note: For those of you following the saga of the passport authentications, you’ll love this.  Now, I can’t even find my passport applications.  What’s up with that???

 

 

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Goal:  The object of a person’s ambition or effort; an aim or desired result.

My regular readers know that every Thursday I blog about the goals I have set for myself the week before and in that update I include the good, the bad, and the ugly truth about this journey I’m on to health.  I’m trying to recover from the effects of a childhood ignorance regarding how food obsessions get started and where they take the unfortunates caught in their clutches.  Most of the time I find my goal list inspiring, but there are days when I’d like to punch it in the face.

I’m not a violent person, mind you, so I don’t really punch anyone or thing, but that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t like to, if indeed goal lists could be hurt in this way.

I like goals because they fuel my ambition and bring me results.

I dislike goal lists because they hold the potential to make me crazy.  😉

 MY THREE TEENY, TINY GOALS LAST WEEK

  1. Read three chapters from a current healthy-living type publication and blog about what I learn there.
  2. Continue on with my IF-ing experiment, IF-ing at least 3 x per week.
  3. Report my current weight as a coded message in at least one blog post this week.

HOW I DID!

I’m pretty excited about my progress this week.  I fasted during breakfast three days, and I also reported my current weight as a coded message on Friday.  If you didn’t see that post, check it out here.

Yes, I do have a sense of humor, and

No, I do not want you write me to ask which of those numbers is my true current weight.

Some things a gal has to keep private, right?

I did not do so well with Goal No. 1 on my list this week.  For some reason, I have been finding it difficult to do all the things I want to do in a week for a while now.  Reading has been one of those things that has fallen by the wayside. The good news about that is that I have been getting to bed earlier in the evenings in lieu of reading into the wee hours.  An earlier bedtime is part of my continuing effort to bring some of the things that are out of whack in my life back into balance.  I don’t sleep well most nights, so an earlier bedtime helps me to get somewhere near 8 hours of shut-eye every evening.

Since I did not get Goal No. 1 done this week, I will put it back on my goal list for another week and see if I can accomplish it in the next seven days.

MY THREE TEENY, TINY GOALS FOR THIS WEEK

  1.  Read 3 chapters of a current healthy-living publications and blog about what I’ve learned.

2.  Continue IF-ing this week, for at least three days.

3.  Focus on bringing the balance back–with food, with fun, with family, and with my future plans.

MY HOPE

My hope?  Same as yours—to feel better and to live a balanced and happy life.  Isn’t that what we all want?  Wish me luck this week. Weee, here I go…

What are you doing these days to bring the balance back to your life?  What one thing are you willing to do this week to help you meet a teeny, tiny goal you’ve set for yourself?

Three Goals and Charles Duhigg

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It’s Thursday again, and time once more to look at those habits I’m building into my life through repetition.

ABOUT REPETITION AND MY GOALS

I’ve heard it said that repetition is the only form of permanence we can attain in this life. I think it’s true.  Change is ever nipping, nipping, nipping at our heels, and much of what we face in life we are powerless to control, but we are not helpless.  We can control ourselves.  One of the fruits of spiritual connection is the promise that we will master our urges.

Surrender to a plan, a program, my God, and a teeny, tiny bit of commitment to stay the course and keep focused on my goals will get me there.

We all have goals.  My teeny, tiny three show up here on my blog every Thursday.  Yours may show up on pages in your journal.  Maybe you share your goals with your significant other, or a support group, or a trusted friend.  Wherever we share our goals, no matter how formally they may be shared or not, we all have something we are striving to attain.  For me, it is creating winning scenarios that build confidence.

SMARTER, FASTER, BETTER

I’m currently reading Charles Duhigg’s genius book, Smarter, Faster, Better: The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and Business, and I’m loving it. I have often hawked his previous best seller, The Power of Habit, here.  I love, loved that book and this one is just as informative.  I’m a big fan of HABIT and all the good it can do, especially as it unconsciously moves us through life, but it does seem to have a down side.  Doesn’t everything?

CHARLES DUHIGG AND MY TGT INITIATIVE

What does Charles Duhigg’s book have to do with my goal list this week?  Just this:  In this newest book by Charles, he talks about the ugly downside of goal setting.

What is that downside?  Closure!

You’ve all heard the word “closure” and probably most often in the sense of ending relationships or the death of loved ones, especially those taken from us suddenly or by violent means.  But closure as Charles refers to it in the book is all about that “Ahhh” moment one gets when a project is finally finished.  It is a feeling I know well.

I am very goal oriented and very methodical, so much so that I adore the “Ahhh” moments of life.  You know them, right? They are what you feel when you’ve read the last page on a good book, or written that final stance of your poem. They come when the ironing is done, the cake is decorated, and the baby is bathed with clean jammies on, laid down for the night, and finally off to the land of nod.  “Ahh,” you say, either consciously or unconsciously (and you might pour yourself a glass of wine).  That sigh you let escape your lips as you fall back into the bed stead after performing mattress gymnastics–its all part of closure.

Charles said that “Ahhh” moment can be good, but it can also be bad. 

The “Ahhh” moment is bad when it becomes your single most loved motivation for what you’re doing. It’s bad because it clouds your judgment.  It makes you narrow minded.  It causes you and me to fixate on the end that we’ve chiseled out for ourselves in our creative minds.  It makes acceptance of other possibilities hard to envision, and of course that means disaster.  It’s incredibly hard to shift gears when you have a hard goal in mind, and even harder when you crave the closure of an “Ahhh” moment.

True story:  I got pregnant for my second child because of a constant lack of an “Ahhh” moment during the work day.  Obviously, that wasn’t the only reason, but it didn’t hurt that I hated that job!  It didn’t help, either, that my “office” was in a building with no windows and I was employed there during the NEPA winter months, so no sunshine for this girl for four months!  Mr was very happy that I quit that job, and I am too as I look on the face of a man I raised who I am very proud to call son.  All this to say, be careful about setting goals that reinforce closure over habit.  Those kind of goals kill brain cells.

My estimation, not Charles Duhigg’s, mind you.

LAST WEEK’S GOALS       (About time, right?!)

  • Exercise for 15 minutes every day this week, and eat my oatmeal every day.

DONE AND DONE!

  • Get blood labs done!

DONE, and the results were better than I ever could have anticipated. 5.7 A1C without diabetic meds.  Yay!!!

  • Do an inventory of my pantry this week and throw out anything that is expired or not regularly used by our family.

Oops! Note done.  I missed this goal while I was playing with the wee ones and celebrating Easter.  No problem. I will just set this as a goal for this coming weel.

THIS WEEK’S THREE TEENY, TINY GOALS

  • Continue on with exercise and oatmeal every day.
  • Inventory pantry and throw out expired products.
  • Finish reading Smarter, Faster, Better and write a review.

Easy peasy!  These should be small enough for a WIN this week.  Keep me honest, though, and check back to see if I did what I said I would.

What goals did you set for yourself this week? Did you achieve them?

 

 

 

Blood Labs Done-Results!

Blood test

Remember how I had made it a goal of mine to have my blood draw done THREE WEEKS IN A ROW?

Yeah, I remember!

It was embarrassing, not being able to meet that goal three weeks running.  When I put the goal on my Thursday list this last time I said to myself, “Enough!  This is getting done!!!”

I like exclamation points!!!!!

I also like being able to report I’ve met all my goals!!!!!

Best of all, I like the results I got back from my most recent blood testing:

Cholesterol 148

HDL: 48

LDL: 82

Trigs: 91

Glucose: 97

A1C: 5.7

These results are such a relief to me, and proof positive that eating right and exercising, even the tiniest bit (15-30 minutes each day), can make a big difference in your numbers.

The best feeling of all is that feeling I got when I did something I did not want to do because it was beneficial for me to do it.

No, wait, I lie.

The best feeling was seeing an A1c number within a normal range without diabetic meds!!!!! 

My BUN number on the report showed a tad bit elevated, so I’m trying to figure out what I need to do to tweak my diet and get that number down next time.  Any suggestions, send ’em over.  That number could have been a result of dehydration, since I was about 13 hours out from my most recent meal and drinking, but I’m not banking on that.  In the weeks to follow I will be cutting more protein out of my diet.  I’m hoping the nuts I’m eating is not contributing to this number, because I love my nuts, but I know there is a lot of work I could do to cut out animal proteins in my diet.  I’ll start there and see how it goes.

So glad to have crushed this goal this week!  Now, onward and upward to those other two. I’ve got to report in three short days. I want to do better with my teeny, tiny goals this week!!!!!

What goals have  you set for yourself this week?  How’s it going?

 

Cravings, Be Gone!

Today I had a thought about my food plan…

For a while, I have been skipping my daily sojourn in search of lunch and instead have been eating my first meal of the day later in the day, beginning with home-made oatmeal at lunch.

I’ve also switched to almond milk, instead of dairy on my oatmeal.

I’ve made sure I have fresh fruit to go with the oats, which already has walnuts in it.

When I baked my last batch of the baked oatmeal, I used half the amount of sugar that the recipe calls for, and it’s still sweet with 1/3 cup of raw sugar added to a 9-10 serving batch.

I replace half of the oil called for in the recipe with natural, no-sugar added applesauce.

I usually put blueberries on top before digging in.

It’s all good tasting, good for me, and a slow-acting infusion into my blood stream that results in lower BGLs and its helping me stop the cravings!!!!

What I realized today is that not getting in the car, not searching for lunch when I’m already hungry, and not eating something sugar-laden or factory-made (ie: highly processed foods), is helping me help myself.

Used to be, the time between lunch and dinner was my hardest time with food. It was that time of the day when I craved a snack the most.  I think it was more about boredom than hunger, but nonetheless, in the afternoon was when I wanted to get in trouble with food.

I talked with another compulsive over eater this week, discussing plans for eating boring foods at supper in an effort to quit the mind games we COEs suffer from.  The way this individual sees it, planning a supper that doesn’t include “favorite” foods, even if one can eat them other times, provides for a more tranquil day.  I’m in!!!

Serenity now, instead of in some distant fantasized time!  Sounded good to me!

It made sense, and this afternoon I realized that I had been doing the very same thing, but in my own way.  Ha!  Together, we get better!

Do you have a specific time, day or night, when you want to eat more than you need?  What tactics have you employed in order to fight back against food cravings?

Here is my Baked Oatmeal recipe again…

Lori’s Baked Oatmeal

2/3 cup raw sugar (I cut sugar in half, but recipe calls for this amount)
2 eggs
1/4 cup oil
1/4 cup no sugar added applesauce
1 cup almond milk
1 tsp vanilla (optional)

2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
2 tsp non-aluminum baking powder
3 cups old fashioned oats

Raisins and walnut, as desired (I add a handful of nuts and half handful of raisins.
Directions: Mix all wet ingredients in a bowl. Add dry ingredients and mix well. Add the fruit and nuts, mixing well. Spray an 8X8 pan with Pam and bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes.
I take it out when the top is a little brown, but if you want, you can finish at 30 minutes.
Serve warm or pack it for lunch. Its incredibly satisfying and good for you!
Makes 9-12 servings