It’s said that every journey starts with a single step…or something like that. Well, it feels like I’ve been on this journey of trying to lose weight forever, and that I’ve taken that first step hundreds of times. Needless to say, it’s frustrating.
When last we spoke about my weight loss goals, I told you I had this grand idea that I wanted to get into better shape before I turned 40 (just 13 short months away). Unlike other times I have started this journey, this time I’m really committed to making this happened; I even made a video about it, calling it Operation Fit By 40.
The first thing I realized when I started this new weight journey is, I have a lot of bad habits. And the only way to cure bad habits is to replace them with good habits…or at least that’s what The Berenstain Bears taught me.
I know, you’re probably thinking that was a really weird segue, but everything in my life revolves around The Berenstain Bears because they’re the only books my son wants to read right now. These are the two books he especially enjoys:
So, as you can see from the titles of the books, my life is pretty awesome right now. On top of having to read outdated parenting advice, I get to listen to a 5yo constantly tell me how I should be more polite, or ask me if I’m eating junk food every time I put something near my mouth, or the crown jewel of our conversations – telling me what Mama Bear would say every time I slip up. You know what…I’d love to tell Mama Bear to take all her snooty advice and….no no, calm down Mike, they’re just books.
Alright, to be fair, the books aren’t all bad. Mama Bear, while annoying, does come up with good plans in both books to get the family back on the right track. And that’s exactly what I need this time around – a plan, because all the goals and motivation in the world won’t amount to much without a plan. To put it plainly, I need more than just direction; I need a road map to help when the course gets difficult; when my motivation is tested, and boy has it already been tested in January (more on that in a bit).
Structure Leads to Better Health:
The first step I took was to sit down and talk with my wife about we can game-plan being more structured with our meals, and what steps we need to take to eat better. Lucky for me, I speaking the wife’s language. She’s all about 2017 being her year of structure. Some of the steps we came up with were:
- Joint meal planning/prepping – My wife does the majority, if not all the food shopping for our house. And up until recently, she did most of the cooking too. But if we work together, giving each other breaks now and again, we can better prevent from getting burned out, and turning to easy junk food.
- Rethinking the whole food shopping thing – My wife tells me how searching for sales, and then going to several different stores wears her out, and kills her motivation to cook some days, let alone take the time to think of healthy meals to make. So, to cut down on stress, we’re minimizing the items we bring to the house, and instead of running around to multiple stores, we decided to use a food service that brings our groceries to our house.
- Replacing goodies with healthier snacks – much like the cubs in The Berenstain Bears, we’re working really hard to cut down on mindless eating. And when we do reach for a mid-day snack, we’re grabbing items like apples, bananas or nuts, instead of cookies or chips.
Starting My Day Off With Bulletproof:
I’m still going strong with my plan from my last post of replacing my old coffee routine, and brand, with my new Bulletproof routine. Bulletproof coffee with grass-fed ghee and brain octane oil, has prove to be one of the best weapons I have in fighting early morning snacking. The coffee not only tastes awesome, but it fills me up quicker, and longer.
I’m Here to Pump…You Up!:
No weight loss program would be complete without working out. As I talk about in my video above, I’m not the best when it comes to sticking with a workout plan. I don’t really like going to the gym and working out by myself. I get bored easily with the mindless routine of simply lifting weights, which usually leads to me no longer working out, and defeating all the purpose of trying to lose weight. That’s why I joined my friend Dai Manuel’s (creator of and author of The Whole Life Manifesto) 28 day New Year Best You Challenge. This challenge, and the workouts involved are all about using your environment around along with our own body weight, to maximize your workout. Like his other WLM challenges the workouts are all about high intensity, doing as many repetitions as possible in a 15 min time limit, along with 5 minutes of meditation, and 10 minutes doing something that cultivates your mind
It all comes down to 30 minutes a day to help improve the rest of your life. The challenge is about 2 weeks in, but you can still sign up, and don’t worry, there is always another challenge ready to start when one ends.
Structure Also Means Giving Yourself Some Grace:
So, earlier I mentioned how January has already been putting me through the wringer. I was so excited and motivated to get going in Dai’s New Year’s challenge, and the day before it started I got really sick with the stomach flu. It took me about a week to recover, and then my wife caught, and then the kids caught, and so on and so on. We’re half way through the challenge and I haven’t done a single workout yet. Normally this is where I would get down on myself, and just give up. But not this time.
I know I joked in my last post about 40 being right around the corner and all, but I’m serious; I really want to get into shape. I know this journey isn’t going to be a straight line. There are going to be plenty of bumps in the road, and things in life that try and detour me from continuing on. In years past I was all too happy to oblige those detours, but going forward I accept that part of my journey will be setbacks. So, instead of quitting this time, I will learn from those setbacks, and allow myself some grace when I feel like I have failed.
To quote and overused phrase, “It’s a marathon, not a sprint.” And I’m in it for the long haul this time.