Thursday, October 18, 2012
Progress can be measured in large chunks or small bits. Sometimes our biggest goals, those ones we would like to take chunks out of, come to us in small bits. When those successes seem to slow and come at a snail's pace it is important to take a moment and look at the bigger picture. How long have you been working toward the goal? No really. How long?
I know I've set some goals recently that are inching their way along. If I take an honest look at them and assess where they originated I've been working on them for years not months. In my early to mid 30's I was what I consider my ideal weight but not my ideal body fat percentage. As a fitness professional I am quite aware of the difference here and how it plays out on a person's (me in this case) health. Unfortunately for me my health took an interesting turn in my early 40's. I broke my leg in 3 places and required 8 screws and a plate to repair it. When I was finally able to walk easily again, I found myself with an even higher body fat percentage and a scale weight that made me sad.
It has taken me diligent work but my fitness has improved and my numbers are turning around. One factor has been my dedication to my TLS low glycemic impact eating. Once I saw how easy it is to put on lean muscle and take off unwanted fat by eating healthy whole foods I chose to be a coach. Now my eating plan fuels my goals.
Another factor is my dedication to exercise. Running has completely changed my life. Today's run was 5.5 miles. I ran on flat ground. I stopped when I felt pain and ran when the pain eased off. I knew my body could sustain the run. I knew my muscles could continue. I knew my lungs and heart were strong enough to take the extended cardiovascular exercise. I was happy about that.
When I take a look back at where I was 4 years ago I am amazed. I am awed at where I was and where I am now. I could never have run 5.5 miles 4 years ago. I doubt I could have run 1 mile. I had to learn I wanted to run. I had to find that bottom place, even as a trainer, to get to the place where I wanted to excel. Once I reached that place I had to start the training. Most people don't wake up runners. Most people have to start walking. Then they have to progress to walking with a few jogging or running bursts in there. Eventually they switch out to running. Few people enjoy running more than 3-5 miles. Some people enjoy endurance running. I never thought I was one of those people.
Six weeks ago I wanted to make my 5 mile easy run be an 8 mile run. I wanted to have that easy recovery at the longer distance. Yesterday's run was not 8 miles but it was darn close. This morning I woke without any soreness in my body. I feel I've achieved that goal. That is one step on the road to my grander goal. My goal of running a full marathon in less than 5 hours in March. My scale weight is approaching my desires as is my body fat percentage. It seems the running and the fat burning goals are inching their way to achievement at about the same rate as my running goals.
I have a simple exercise for anyone who is struggling with their grand goals right now. Look at that goal. Look at all the steps to achieving that goal. Look at where you had to come from to even state you wanted to reach that goal. Take pride in yourself. Take pride in the path you have been on. Take great pride in what it took to get to where you are today. Think about what your next step is. Are you working on burning fat but not getting the results you desire? Get yourself doing another 30 minutes of cardio. Are you doing plenty of cardio but not eating enough or the right foods? Set a meal plan and follow it to the letter. If you are having issues remembering to eat on time set a timer and eat when the timer goes off. Getting the right foods into the body does not happen by accident. You have to plan it. Getting your cardio done requires planning. Getting your strength training done requires planning. You are just as important as all the people and events that are filling your days. Take the time to put yourself first. I can guarantee you will have more energy and be more productive in the time you offer to others.
How about ranch today?? How about we go for a comfort food? Wouldn't it be nice to have a ranch dressing that you could use without feeling guilty?
Ranch Style Dressing
1/2 cup kefir OR 4 TBS Greek yogurt mixed with milk to make 1/2 cup
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp dill weed
salt and pepper to taste
Mix all ingredients together and allow flavors to meld. Use sparingly on salad. I have used this dressing as a dip for roasted chicken. Yup. I'm just that weird. It does taste yummy though!