Monday, January 14, 2013

Hitting Walls

This weekend I hit a wall.  It was the "I am so sick of scheduling my life around working out!" wall.  I want to say this wall did not come from 3 weeks of a new workout plan for the new year.  I think this wall has been growing higher and higher for months.

I have a close friend that I workout with regularly.  We set 2-3 week goals for working out and then do everything we can to meet those goals.  If we succeed, we pick a reward (like buying a new outfit or taking a road trip).  If we fail, we have a punishment (it's called "push-up pyramid"... yes, it is as bad as it sounds).  We've been setting goals and experiencing rewards (and punishments) pretty consistently for the last 4 months.

You'd think with all that activity I would've lost weight, not gained it last year!  I'm just thankful the activity kept me from gaining more.  Now that I have my food intake (I hate using the word "diet") under control, working out should make more of an impact.  But I'm getting a little off topic here... back to THE WALL.

I feel like this wall has been building itself up, week by week, over the last 4 months.  Every time I've had to sacrifice a preferred activity because of going to the gym... two more bricks on the wall.  Every time we have to coordinate our schedules so we can workout together... two more bricks on the wall.  Every time we go to the gym even though there are excuses not to go... two more bricks on the wall.  Every time we pass up happy hour with friends because of a workout... two more bricks on the wall.  Every time we push through a workout that isn't going the way we really want it to... two more bricks on the wall.  That "I am so sick of scheduling my life around working out!" wall has been building and building.

So, Saturday after getting up, and dressed, and driving to the gym... we looked at each other and said "maybe we should take a break".  Maybe 6 workouts a week is wearing us down.  Maybe we should not go to yoga today.  Maybe we should just go to breakfast.  Maybe we should take the week off!  So, instead of walking into the gym and doing yoga, we drove to our favorite breakfast spot and split a delicious breakfast!  We laughed at ourselves all the way there.  It seemed funny that we would get up and drive to the gym, only to leave and go to breakfast instead.  But I really think we needed a break.  In fact, we deserve it!

So, Maya Angleou says we all deserve a day... I'm taking a week.  It's not to say that I won't workout this week.  I very likely will workout some this week.  I'm taking this week off of managing schedules and saying no to fun activities. I just need the break.  And I deserve it!  No rushing from work to the gym.  No going and fighting the gym crowd in the evening.  No syncronizing schedules. No fear of punishment. This is a week of rest from all those cares.  Each day that wall will get a little smaller, and then I will have the energy to tackle it again.

Here are some walls I seem to encounter regularly:
  • The "I just want to eat food that tastes good" Wall
  • The "I'm sick of counting points" Wall
  • The Great Wall of "Diets"
  • The "Scale doesn't show my progress" Wall
  • The "I'd rather be napping" Wall
How do we go about avoiding these walls?  Or at least dealing with them when they appear?  I think rest or taking a break can certainly help at times.  I think the important thing is to see the walls for what they are and work to rebuild around them.  If taking a (reasonable) break will help, then do it.  Just don't give up.  Don't stop working toward the goal.  Give yourself a moment (or a week) but make sure you get back to it once the moment is over.

One thing I do to make sure the "I'm sick of counting points" wall doesn't grow too tall to manage is that I give myself one splurge meal each week (usually right after my WW meeting and weighing in).  For that one meal, I allow myself the opportunity to eat anything I want.  I don't count points for that meal.  Instead, in my tracker, I write "splurge" and then count it as all of my remaining daily points.  That really seems to keep me on track for the week.

  -12 lbs!

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