Weighty Matters

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Setting Goals, Earning Rewards

on November 20, 2013

I set short term goals before the weekend ended. Along with pledging to wake up each day and choose to live the day in recovery and adhere to my food plan, I also set workout goals. I changed my wake up time on my clock radio to 6:00 a.m. from 6:45, determined to get up and do at least 45 minutes of exercise each morning before work. I also promised myself that I would rack up a minimum of 10,000 steps each day on my Fitbit. In addition to this, I’m mindful of the need to stay hydrated. I’m aiming for 100 ounces of fluids (water or green tea) per day.

Wednesday is winding down. All three days I’ve met the goal of adhering to my food plan and staying in recovery. I’ve taken long bike rides the last three mornings, pedaling 8 miles, 10 miles and 8 1/2 miles respectively.

Cycling confused my FitBit a little, I think. I put the gadget on my shorts leg so that it counts my pedaling as steps, otherwise I don’t get credit for the exercise. However, even though it adds up the steps, although I doubt it’s 100% accurate, it doesn’t track the miles anywhere close to correctly. If it had a brain it would be puzzled as to how I logged a couple of thousand steps in less than a mile.

Tonight I forgot to move the gadget to my pant leg for Tai Chi class, so I didn’t get an accurate accounting of my steps. This meant that when I got home after class, my daily total was less than 9500 steps! This would never do! I’d set a goal, I tell you. 🙂

I could have taken the dogs for another walk. My neighborhood is safe enough to do so, even after dark. However, several of my neighbors go to bed really early. There are also a lot of other dogs in homes up and down the street. It’s nearly impossible for us to walk around without setting off a chain of barking dogs. In the interest of preserving the peaceful evening, I decided to get those last 500 or so steps at home.

There was a movie on that I wanted to watch, so instead of turning on the in-home walking program DVD, I got creative. At every commercial break, I stood up and walked around or practiced some Tai Chi moves. I even jogged around a little. I also laughed at myself in the process — but I made my 10,000 step goal! Booyah!

I have a large remaining weight loss goal. 45 pounds to go. I am not, however, saying 45 pounds by a certain date. If the last few months of slowwwww creep down the scale is any indication, my body is not making this last push easy. I don’t want to frustrate myself any longer, or risk the emotional disappointment if I say I want to lose XX number of pounds by a particular date and then don’t accomplish it. That kind of numbers game can really mess with my mind and serenity. The most important thing is not how fast I lose it, but that I lose it eventually.

I’m sticking with the daily goals — abstinent with food, 10,000 steps a day (factoring in the equivalent if it’s a bike riding day). This week, I want to get a good push going so I’m sticking with the 45 minutes of cardio for seven days in a row. I think my metabolism needs revving. The combination of goals should help. At least that’s what I hope.

Once could say that the physical benefits are reward enough and they are, but that doesn’t mean that I shouldn’t treat myself with something extra. I like fresh cut flowers. I believe that I will reward myself with a gorgeous bouquet. As soon as my massage therapist returns from her trip, I’m scheduling another massage too. I’m working hard and deserve to treat myself well as a reward.

Are you goal-oriented? Got any that you’re working on that you’d like to share? How do you reward yourself?

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3 responses to “Setting Goals, Earning Rewards

  1. Hope says:

    I’m goal oriented as well. 🙂

    I like your daily goals, because they’re all within your control. Losing weight is both inside and outside of our control, kwim? Obviously, nobody loses weight if they’re sedentary and pounding milkshakes. But, sometimes you can do everything “right” and still not lose weight. I don’t think it would be fair to yourself to set a goal of a certain number of pounds by a certain date. Especially because it gets harder to lose weight as you get smaller. If you eat right and walk a lot, good things will happen.

  2. I’m good at setting goals and for the most part, reaching them. But I’m embarrassingly bad at giving myself the rewards I promised myself when I set the goals in the first place. So one of my new goals is to stop denying myself the rewards of achieving something. In theory, I know life is too short to deny myself a few flower stems or a lovely bar of lavender soap. So why do I do that?

  3. Skye says:

    You are doing so wonderfully with your goals! I admire you so much for your self-discipline and your strong will and your dedication. Those are all issues with me and have been for a couple of decades. But you are inspiring to me.

    I have goals: find work, start exercising again, start walking again, eat more healthily. The find work part is a bit harder because my female housemate retired very early and is home all the time now, and we interact more and I’m teaching her to crochet, so we go to yarn shops. So I don’t often find or make the time to to my job-hunting activities. As for the other ones, I simply haven’t started. I have a long to-do list that I haven’t started since I moved here in April! So dedication and self-discipline are kinda hard for me these days. But I’m working on them.

    Rewards still often include food, but I’m trying to wean myself away from that. I like cut flowers but don’t currently have room for them (I’m working on changing that). I want a massage. I have to watch out on the money-spending front due to having very little left in savings. Already my housemate is very generously buying me warm clothing and paying all my living expenses; I pay my personal bills.

    There is also a treadmill and a recumbent stationary bike upstairs that I need to use (my knees, which I hurt while still living at my mom’s house) are getting worse again due to a lack of exercise (and strength) combined with too many recent experiences standing or shopping for several hours. So there is some motivation!

    That’s it for me. It’s very good to hear about you and your successes!

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