Commit To Being Healthy| 200 Days of Becoming Healthy Version of Me

At the beginning of the year I had this goal about my health and fitness. It first started as a diet goal of being on Whole30 for at least 90 days. Turns out instead of being on a “diet,” I refocused on being committed to being healthy for 200 days leading up to the Refuse To Abuse 5k. Now after 200 days of this goal, I thought it was time for an update and overview of how I felt throughout the whole process. No, I haven’t loss the weight I thought by the end. In fact, I’ve gained some, but I think it’s important to share what I’m going through so others who are going through similar things can feel encouraged to keep striving toward their goal. First- I will not be sharing comparison pictures because as one blogger pointed out, a picture does not do justice to how a person feels about their results. To base how healthy a person is by how they look you will miss the real important aspect of being healthy is. Second- I am still continuing on this goal for the rest of the year, just not documenting it every month from this point onward. Third- it is never too late to start being committed to being healthy! Just start today! Okay lets get on with the recap!

Recap

The two-hundred days of this goal started January 2nd to July 20th.

How Was I Successful?

I finished the 5K in 45 minutes! Also I have a better understanding of the definition of being healthy is for me. Even if I did not loose weight I had planned to, I was still successful in figuring out what healthy lifestyle moving forward in my thirties.

Finished my 5K and added this new bling to my collection!

What Didn’t Go So Well?

Having accesses to unhealthy food at work. There was always temptations flouting around at work when it came to food. It seemed there was always some catered event, leftover pizza in the break room and the office candy bowl. I know if a fact I’m a stress eater, and anything chocolate is my weakness. The first 90 days on the Whole30 was brutal when Kit-Kats are staring at you and all you want is to eat all the Kit-Kats by the end of a stressful day. Also the food truck rotation didn’t help much either when someone in the office kept stealing your lunch ( who steals salad?).

What Could I Have Done Differently?

We all wish stress could magically disappear when we are trying to improve our health. If I could go back over the last 200 days, I would change how I managed all the stress. In a few of the posts on this goal I noticed there was a pattern of stress needing to be dealt with. I could have added more self-care time to my week to manage all the stress from a job that was too demanding at times (boss emails you Saturday night about work the following week!). Also working more on the mental health side of the equation than just the physical side. I focused more on the physical aspect than the inner mental aspect which could have contribute to unnecessary food issues.

How Do I Feeling?

Runner’s high is one hell of a feeling! I feel better about myself for completing this one goal of committed to being healthier version of myself for 200 days. I feel whole lot better physically and mentally than I have in a long time. There is this optimism present in my life right now even when current issues with stress from major events happening while doing this. The Whole30 is known for the non-scale victories of clearer thinking and more optimistic outlook after being on it for more than thirty days. Its like a runner’s high!

What Motivated Me?

Motivated by crossing the finish line at a 5K is what motivated me to do this. After all it had been a few years since I ran my first (and probably only) half-marathon. Taking up running again after a few years off had it’s challenges, and training for a 5K was a good starting point to get healthy again. Another factor motivating me was the fact I had for some time had an unhealthy relationship with food and yo-yo dieting kept me in a cycle of self-hating which took a form of doing Whole30s at the beginning of the year only to fall off the healthy train after completing them. By combining the two, it helped me stay on track.

Non Scale Victories

  • Falling asleep more easily and staying asleep.
  • Healthier gums and whiter teeth (Dentist noticed this at my last check up).
  • More optimistic, laugh more, and more outgoing in social situations.
  • Recover more effectively from exercise.
  • Outside more often.
  • Need less caffeine to get me up in the morning.
  • Healthier relationship with food.
  • Hit a new personal best in running and in healthy eating.
  • Fewer blemishes, longer stronger nails and thicker hair.
  • Less bloating after eating.
  • Became more consistent in moving and exercise throughout the day.
  • Drank more water throughout the day.
  • Improved performance at work.

Need To Improve On- Non Scale Victories

  • Not using food as: comfort, reward or as stress management.
  • Handle stress and anxiety better.
  • Improvement in mental health.
  • More defined muscle tone and leaner appearance.
  • Not getting cranky when I haven’t eaten in awhile.
  • Longer mile hikes without legs giving out.

I Give Myself 4/5   Stars

As you can see, even after seven months in on my goal I still have some improvements to make. Being committed to being a healthy version of myself takes time, patience and constant improvement daily to stay healthy. As I said above, this goal is not done with me crossing the finish line of my 5K, but keep striving to improve further until the end of the year. One thing I have learned is being healthy is a lifestyle change that you have to make an effort to make changes on the daily. Being committed to being healthy is one large goal with many mini goals needed to reach the target goal. Either way, diet alone does not get you there, but a combination of diet, exercise, and self-care helps to get there in the end. To all my reader who followed along, thank you for the support as I document this journey to crossing the finish line at Refuse to Abuse 5K!

Cheers to a well done goal!

Blog Posts In This Series:

30 Days Whole30 60 Days Whole30 90 Days Becoming Healthy 120 Days Becoming Health 150 Days Becoming Healthy 180 Days Becoming Healthy 20 Days Before Race Day

Commit to Being Healthy| 20 Days Before Race Day

WOW! Today is the day after seven months working towards my 5K goal of being healthy! Twenty days before the race has always the critical crunch time were habits could slip or go extreme. I decided to caution on the side of not over doing it, but still keeping a watch on diet leading up to the morning of the fun run.

Here is the twenty day recap before race day…

How was I successful?

After all the celebrating the 4th of July with an all American BBQ, it kept the rest of the days in check with adding a little more fruits and veggies at all meals. The food trucks at work did not call to me at all, but the awesome chicken salad did! The weather here in Seattle has been interesting again. Some days it has been overcast, and other days it is sunny. Even on the overcast days, I still was able to get out and exercise.

What didn’t go so well?

During the last twenty days there has been some stress of moving to a new job (more coming on this transition later). Seems like most of the past months I have been dealing with stress in general. At some point by the end of the year I may finally get a handle on the job stress. Stay tune for that!

how I am feeling?

Feeling I can finish strong in the 5K! Feel I still have some improvements to make as I continue with my healthy habits.

How I kept motivated?

Motivation over the last twenty days came more from the fact I will be running around the ballpark and get to see a baseball game after completing the fun run. Also what motivated me is I get to support a cause close to my heart and have fun doing it at the same time.

I give myself 4/5 stars

Commit to Healthy|180 Days Becoming Healthy

The month of June is the month of birthdays in my family which means cake galore! I mean eating Trader Joe’s chocolate cake three times this month is overload when you think about it. Also June kicks off the summer BBQ season which means all the lovely healthy stuff appears on the grill with the not so healthy stuff. Yet as the days dwindled down until the 5k run in July, it was crunch time to get ready for 3.1 miles around T-Mobile Field. Which also means I did indulge in a ballpark hotdog while watching the Mariners play on my birthday weekend.

Yet June was a stressful month with all the changes again happening in my life (it has become a pattern in my life I am trying to break). Stress is never easy to, and when you are under it for a long period of time it does things to you.

So lets dive into it…

How was I successful?

With the opening of farmer’s markets and the abundance of spring produce, I have no excuse not to eat my veggies. At work I found a way to keep the salad eating thieves away from my lunch and had more days of healthy eating then last month (150 days). I started to take my lunch outside when the weather is nice and get those much needed vitamin Ds.

At home I have started eating more of the Mediterranean diet then Whole30 stuff for dinner each night. Deep down inside I have always had a thing for authentic Greek and Italian food. After reading countless scientific studies, the Mediterranean diet will whip you into fighting shape by eating it for four days you will become 6% speedier in running then when on a western diet. Good news for my 5k!

Spending time with friends helped with some of the stress. As I have pointed out in a blog post earlier this year, baseball fields have a way of letting you forget the stress of the outside world a few hours. Spending those hours with friends made it better. Spending time with nature as well lead to a few moments where stress melted away for a little bit.

What didn’t go so well?

Stress did not go so well this month! I have noticed a pattern lately since starting this commit to healthy, and that it how I handle stress. I’m not talking stress on my body through physical means, but through mental and at times spiritual means. A part of being healthy is have a healthy coping mechanism for handling stress, and I need to figure this out real fast. I realized there was been time I almost lost my sh!t or cried at work. Maybe it is the BS I’m dealing with or I just need a real break.

Also Mr. Oreo made the whole eating healthy hard when I spotted these in store!

Oreo now has dark chocolate double stuff Oreo’s and these are dangerously good! I mean I could eat the whole pack in one sitting if I could. Also they pair well with Rose, which is also millennial’s dream.

What can I do differently?

One: I can start getting a hold of my stress and managing it better then I have recently. It maybe just the fact I am starting to burn out again come summer time. Two: really keep myself from going down the rabbit hole of stress eating with Oreo’s or other baked goods. Three: self-care needs to be a priority again.

How am I feeling?

Stressed out and need to figure out how to not be all the damn time. But, at least I feel better about my continue progress of committing to be healthy.

What motivates me?

Still progressing towards my goal of finishing strong at the 5k in July and mental, physical health as well.

I give myself 4/5 stars

Commit To Healthy|150 Days Becoming Healthy

With the start of the month being national taco day, and all the BBQs from that point on, no wonder I had to really ramp up the workouts. Also the fact someone kept taking my lunch a work a few times so the food truck was being frequented more than it should have. The thing is, becoming healthy becomes even harder when someone keeps stealing your healthy lunch you made. I never thought someone would steal a salad, but then again people do weird things when hungry. At least they returned the empty containers back to the fridge in the end.

So with drama here is the low down on what happened 150 days into becoming healthier me.

How Was I Successful?

Packed a healthy lunch for work- for someone else to eat. At least I did make a healthy lunch so I give myself points for this. Also the fact I have not been eating at my desk, but being more social with others and taking walks around the business park has helped to get me ready for the 5k in July and to relax before jumping back into work for the rest of the day.

Lake Washington

Earlier in the month we had a lot of nice warm sunny days where relaxation by a body of water was perfect. After a stressful days at work, and all the things life throws in the mix, finding time to relax has become priority. A few friends and I have been doing a Bible study on Thursday nights at one of their houses. Just being near and hearing sounds of waves lapping in the background as we discuss a book in the Bible has an amazing calming effect needed to get through Friday.

What Didn’t Go So Well?

Who the f8ck keeps stealing my salad?! The fact I had to eat off the food truck more than I would like to have done, this was not something I would count as a success this month. Besides eating off a truck is unhealthy and EXPENSIVE as hell, and not to mention buying the healthy ingredients can be expensive, it did not deterred me from at least having two other meals that day healthy.

I started to have one to two glasses of Ros`e and Juanita’s chili chips after work every Friday. I call it stress eating with the chips, but as person who does not see herself identifying with millennials I sure am getting into the whole wine thing.

Rose and chips after a long week at work

What Can I do Differently?

Put my lunch in this cooler like bag next time

Image result for biohazard lunch box
Think Geek

I’M KIDDING.. well maybe not.

Another thing I could really do differently figure out how to workout in the morning without feeling icky afterwards. I think eating too soon after a workout maybe the culprit, and this coming month I need to figure out how to best go about eating breakfast without it making me sick afterwards.

How Am I Feeling?

In almost two months I will be running 3.1 miles around a stadium and right now I feel as if I could do it.

What Motivates Me?

I keep typing the some thing to this question but it is true. What is motivating me is the 3.1 mile 5k I will be doing in July and the Mariners game afterwards. Also just the fact I am getting healthier and stronger every week.

I Give Myself  3/5  Stars this month due to consuming not so healthy options for lunch after having my lunch stolen a few times.

Commit To Being Healthy|120 Days Becoming Healthy

There are only three to four months a year where people are not celebrating something with food. So technically you have to navigate through the rest of eight to nine months trying to avoid going over board. April isn’t one of those months, especially when you come off forty days of giving up something in the food category called Lent. No wonder when Easter/Passover comes around you are shoving hot cross buns in your mouth while taking out the chocolate Easter bunnies like Mr. Mc. Gregor in The Tale of Peter Rabbit.

hungry animation GIF

BUT…. I manage to contain myself when it came to those oh so wonderful little chocolate bunnies. I only had one and it was Cadbury.

How Was I Successful?

At the beginning of the month I had to move desk space at work again (cue eye roll, really??), but this meant moving far away from the candy dish full of mini Kit Kats and M&M (maybe a Snickers bar in there too) to a whole new section where the green juice and Raisin Bran cereal people hang out . Yep I’m counting this as a successful point in the month-don’t judge me! Also having a desk faraway from the the break room meant those left over lunch meeting stuff was never seen by me until the end of the day.

On the fitness side of things I started to get really into training for the 5k I will be running in July. Just walking during lunch along the trail behind the building and getting a good run in early in the morning has helped to bring back the running stamina needed to get through 3.1 miles around the stadium. I will admit it has been a few years since I last trained for a 5K let alone a half marathon. In the process of the last month I have seen a significant loss of weight compare to the first two months of the year. You can call it motivation when another 4lbs comes off. Along with walk/run training part, I have been back to weight lifting to help in the process of building muscle to replace the fat I am loosing.

Last month I talked about eating at my desk most days due to having so much work to slog through. Instead I take my lunch and a book to read when no one in the break room wants to talk to me (a common thing really. Is that healthy?) to the break room to get away. At one point I drove to Woodenville to get lunch at Shake n’ Go to get away for awhile. Not taking my work home with me and allowing myself time to unwind from a stressful day has helped so much. Just setting those boundaries has helped with having a weekend I can now call “me time.” Commit to being healthy is not all about diet and exercise, but also being healthy mentally. I wrote a post a week ago regarding me trying to be everything to everyone.

What Didn’t Go So Well?

With Easter comes BREAD!! I grew up as a bread kid. I would hide pieces of bread in my room to consume later. At one point my parents had to hid the bread from me or lock the bread box! Just as Oprah has said many times, I love bread and I could eat nothing but bread everyday if it meant I could not get fat (chocolate too!). I’m with you Oprah! The fact is every Easter comes hot cross buns, resurrection rolls, and anything with yeast in it. I may have over indulged in the baked goods at work, home and even church. Easter Sunday the church had pancake breakfast before both services. Yep I had a helping of two pancakes and shame on me because I knew better.

What Motivates Me?

Motivation is to establish healthy habits, and get myself ready for the 3.1 miles in July. But lets be real, its the fact I’m loosing “extra” weight that is motivating me to keep going. Having coworkers and friends saying I look more healthy than before helps during the moments when I almost want to give up on bad days.

What Can I do Differently next month?

The first few months this year I was on Whole30 for 90 days and in April I decided to take a month off from doing the program. In May I will be going back on Whole30 again to reset after Easter indulgences. With the local farmers markets starting to open around the area, getting fresh produce for my Whole30 will be easier and keeping with my goals of getting as much healthy fresh food as possible.

On the fitness side of doing things differently, I will be continuing with the couch to 5k training plan for July. If the weather becomes more sunny, maybe getting off the treadmill in the morning for a run in the morning would be great.

I Give Myself 4/5   Stars for this month!

Note To Self: Stop Trying To Be Everything

Being healthy is to overall focus on myself for once. After going a few months at work eating my lunch at my desk almost everyday or having lunch cut short, taking my work home every night and weekends at the expense of my sanity. No wonder at the beginning of March I was knocked out by a cold. While taking a sick day, I realized as I went in and out of sleeping, I needed to stop feeling guilty for taking care of myself.

I have this habit of trying to be everything and doing everything for everyone. Maybe it has to do with being a women, or the competitiveness of society, or just social media making me feel like crap. Either way it seems like an endless cycle of trying to be everything; perfect friend/girlfriend/employee/daughter/Christian, staying busy all the time, staying fit, eating healthy, trying not to loose your sh!t at small things and large things, keeping a smile on your face, etc….the list goes on. In this modern society we have created a mindset that if we are not doing what needs to be done and being productive 100%, that we are being selfish, lazy, or worst, weak. It’s an unhealthy mindset which leads to burn out, depression, anxiety and host of other issues. Not to mention how tiring it all has become.

It has been tiring to the point of exhaustion-I’m exhausted. Isn’t it tiring trying to be perfect all the time? Exhausted trying to be everything without taking a break to focus on ourselves and our mental health.

For years I swept my feelings and issues under the rug, ignoring them and replacing them with unhealthy copping mechanisms. Always turned out miserable, feeling horrible all the time and left as a hallow out shell. After reading Becca Risa Luna’s post on this very topic, her advice was simple, taking care of yourself is work that needs to be done too. Work which you do not sweep feelings, issues, and health under the rug just to keep others happy or to be perfect.

A part of being healthy is to commit to being healthy mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. Just by realizing this, you are more capable than you give yourself credit for is a part of taking care of one’s self. Giving yourself permission to take a break for as long as you need, to not control everything around you, to set limits, boundaries, and just live in the moment doing what makes you feel nurtured. Give yourself credit for just being, for living, and for once taking care of yourself. Taking care of yourself is work needing to be done too. You don’t need to be everything to everyone, you just need to be you. There is nothing selfish or lazy about needing to be yourself and taking care of yourself in the process. No need to be perfect for everyone.

As I continue into the next month, I’m still reminding myself this simple basic rule; taking care of yourself is work needing to be done too. Giving myself credit for being, for living, and taking care of myself at times first. Even if it is to simply read a novel while hiding from the world for a day or two.