Thursday, June 17, 2010

FitCity: Sustaining Motivation

I’ve started to struggle.

I started my Healthier Me personal initiative on March 1.  For more than 2 months, I coasted through the choices I was making.  Changing what I ate and when I ate and even how I ate was a breeze.  Getting consistent- even daily- exercise became status quo.

For the past 2 weeks or so, some of my old habits have been trying to break back in- and some have been succeeding.
I’ve been contemplating why this happened or what started it when I realized that the analysis of the problem was my way of extending the problem.  “It’s after bedtime and this is when I start to feel the desire to go eat a pudding pop… yep, I’m feeling it now… I wonder why?  Maybe I should eat that pudding pop and find out!” 

So I’m done with analyzing the problem and I’m ready to fix it.

Step One  I loaded up on fresh fruits and veggies.  About a month ago, I started using Farm Fresh Delivery to receive a medium sized bin of fresh, organic produce each week.  Then, we went on vacation and I cancelled delivery.  The week after vacation was hectic so I cancelled delivery again.  I was so happy to get my green bin yesterday.  It was filled with everything I had ordered when I customized my bin.  I now have corn, asparagus, rainbow chard, fingerling potatoes, zucchini, yellow squash, nectarines, peaches, snap peas, cherries, strawberries and blueberries to choose from when I want to munch!  I’ve been bringing my routine food (cottage cheese, cheese sticks, frozen lunch) in to work with me and mixing it up with my fantastic supply of fresh fruits and veggies. 

Step Two  I am being honest about my “transgressions.”  I have a history of wanting to sneak food or be secretive about what I ate or how much I ate.  That was a behavior that often led to a sort of mini-binge at times… shoving in a much higher quantity than normal simply because of the danger of hiding it.  Putting it out here for everyone to see; letting my husband know what I am eating each night- those are things that keep me accountable.

Step Three  Accountability to myself is a huge help for me.  I can’t always trust myself to stay true to the basic formula of “calories in and calories out.”  When I first started my journey, I used My Daily Plate on to determine what my daily calorie intake should be, what my intake actually was, and to track my workouts.  Then I learned to trust myself and I stopped using it.  Getting back on track means getting back to using it to truly be accountable to myself for what I choose to put in my body.

Step Four  Education and Immersion are the last 2 things that help me sustain motivation.  I check in on Facebook throughout the day (side note- are you a Fit City Fan on Facebook?  If not- you totally should be because there are fantastic things ramping up for the summer on the Facebook fan page!!  Don’t miss out!) and I am a fan of Fit CityActive.comCool Running’s Couch to 5KRunner’s WorldClean Eating Mama, and The Anti-Jared.  Chances are excellent that as I scroll down my News Feed, I’m going to see some sort of motivational post from one of those pages- a question about food or a link to an article on running or shoes or a link to a Facebook note about food choices.  I also spend time out on websites that have reputable information about running technique, fueling your body, hydration, and so on.  I keep educating myself on how my body works and what my body needs.  I keep myself immersed in a healthy culture.  Another great tool are the Weekly News Links posted right here on the Fit City blog! That’s how I got started with photo food journaling and have learned about healthy initiatives around our city.

I’ve got my game face back on.  I’m prepared and I know what to do.  Tonight, the post-bedtime chow down isn’t going to bring me down! 

What do you do to sustain motivation?  And if you have any resources that help you along the way- Facebook groups, magazines, books to read- I’d love it if you’d share!


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