31 Day Fitness Challenge, THE END!

And cut! That’s a wrap! January is over and gone and February is here. I can’t believe how quickly January sped by, I really can’t. Look how far we’ve come in only a month.

My predictions were right, unfortunately, and everyone at the Oliver house is still ill and down for the count. Hubby even has it now, too. I’m really sad that I had to sit out the entire last week of the fitness challenge. The number one goal was building a habit and every day that passes by without that habit is a crack in the wall. Ugh! The good news is that today I feel better than I have in many days, I think I’m on the other side of the hill headed up. This cold has totally sapped all my energy but today I felt a little more energetic and I hope that tomorrow or the next day I can feel up to eeking out a workout. I know that if I get back into that it will help me feel more energized.

Even so, I still accomplished SO. MUCH. this month.

I saw so much improvement in my energy and stamina throughout the day because of exercising and eating right. I felt SO. GOOD. And I know that now. And I see that. And I want that. So even though this challenge is over I need to, I WILL, continue working out and weighing in every Friday to measure my improvements.

I saw my muscles grow stronger as I had to increase the size of handweights and dig deeper into the exercises to get the same burn as at the beginning. I look at those two pound weights that I haven’t quite mastered yet and I think, “that’s a joke. I’m exercising with two pound weights.” And I want to see that number go up to 3. And 5. And 10. And so on. And I have to keep exercising and building muscle strength to see those weights get bigger and bigger.

I’ve seen my endurance and stamina increase during the workouts as I started out struggling to make it to the end of the workout, then was able to make it to the end more easily, and as I was able to push myself farther and farther than before each step of the way.

I’ve lost weight – not nearly as much as I’d hoped, but I got the ball rolling and I’ve learned that to lose a lot of weight I’m going to have to push myself farther and harder than I’d realized. I’ve lost six pounds this month. And I’m happy about that. But I want to see that number go up and up and watch the scale go down and down. I want to be able to feel more comfortable in my skin and feel more able to keep up with my kiddos when we play outside. I want to feel more attractive to my husband and not get so frustrated when I shop for clothes. I’ve realized that I’m going to have be more diligent and committed than what I’ve been in the past if that’s going to happen. It’s not going to happen by itself.

I’ve increased our healthy eating here around the house and cranked it up another notch above and beyond what it was. We already ate a lot of healthy things but we also ate a lot of unhealthy things. The kids and I would eat at Sonic at least once, or maybe twice a week. I think we ate at Sonic twice in the whole month of January. (And I didn’t get a soda either time.) We’d also order pizza one night during 3 out of every four weeks, and we only ordered twice in January. On the other hand we also joined a local organic produce co-op which increased our amount of fresh veggies in the house by a huge amount, and we swapped out of our other normal snack foods and grocery items for some healthier options. Clearly we have a little farther to go, but one step at a time, we’ll get there.

I’ve learned a lot. I’ve learned a lot about exercise and metabolism and body types, about healthy foods and ingredients, about calories and required daily amounts of proteins and carbs and fats and so on, about healthy cooking and new recipes. I’ve learned a lot about myself. I’ve learned a lot about what I can and cannot do. Or should I say that I’ve learned that I can do a whole lot and that I shouldn’t say “I can’t.” I could say more, but I might start crying all over the keyboard. I. Learned. A. Lot.

I’m really disappointed that I didn’t get to finish the challenge the way I wanted to. But I’m so happy that I did so well with it up to the point that I got sick. I know, now, that I can keep this up and I that I can do better than what I have been doing up to this point. I know, now, that I don’t have to make excuses and put exercise off and never get around to it. I know, now, that I don’t have to settle for this, I can do better. I know that if I don’t do something now, things WILL get worse. And I know, now, that I have it in me to do something about it.

Now, I want to know what you know. I don’t want to know about all the ways you failed, I want to know all the ways that you overcame those failures and all the ways that you succeeded. I want to know what you learned, and what you’re going to continue doing now that the challenge is over.

I also want to say a quick thanks – thanks for getting this going and doing this with me. I really enjoyed it. You gals rock for joining in on something you didn’t have to do because my husband challenged me to do it. Thanks, ladies!

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Rachel
Rachel
February 2, 2010 10:43 am

Thanks for sharing this! I’m really bummed for you that you had to sit out the last week because of the crud, but those things happen. At least we know that you would have exercised if you could!
.-= Rachel´s last blog ..Unconscious Mutterings =-.

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