Monday, March 23, 2009

New week, new outlook

I don't suppose there is ever a good time to say, "I'm going to start doing x next week." I know that planning to make changes always make us feel a bit better, but unless we put the action behind them, they do no good and in many cases make us feel worse as we weren't able to accomplish our goals.

I've been slowly building the momentum to make changes in my day to day life. Trying to understand where I have time to fit in workouts and maintain the work/family/self things that I want. In this process I've lined up a tool that's critical to accomplishing my next steps: a gym membership. Luckily, I discovered that this gym that I like opened a couple months ago, that's 5 minutes from my house, it's so important in the scheme of things to find a tool that you can use, but isn't going to add extra burden to your workload. So while I've had some start and stops on getting into a continuous practice pursuing my new goals, I feel pretty good that I've been laying the foundation, albeit slowly.

So today, I'm kicking my own ass into gear. I'm rededicating myself to getting back into the shape I want to be in, I've outlined a schedule for myself and have a timeframe that I'm looking at for it. So far so good , as I actually woke up earlyt his morning and made it to the gym for a full hour workout.

Here's my new plan and some of the background for the choices.

1. I need to drop 15-20lbs. The actual amount doesn't really matter to me, I know what I look like when I'm weighing good, and my guess is I'm about 15-20 away from it, although 10 might get there too. So some good cardio workouts in the morning are on tap at the gym, until it warms up enough to start doing my 10 mile bike riding path in the morning.

2. Eating habits need to change. Again, I'm not overly concerned with my eating habits, getting back to a solid 4-5 day a week cardio workout, will take care of a lot of my weight, as while my eating habits aren't great, I still do a pretty good job of adjusting if I indulge. Besides one thing I learned through the years in keeping the weight off having a pizza night isn't going to kill you. It's the pizza night, 5 days a week, or eating a whole pie in one setting that's counter-productive.

3. Muscles: This one's been bugging me, as I've been working to try and figure out a time for a good strength workout. It's frustrated me that I've felt like I have no time to utilize the weight equipment at the gym. Part of that has been laziness though, I've always known, early mornings are where most of my time are, but staying up late, makes that more difficult. So in moving the cardio to morning, rather then lunch or evening. I'm going to make 2 trips a day to the gym, the second trip will be a shorter one for some weight work. The plan is for it to be a lunch trip, which if it works is really going to make me feel good, as I'll have the entire evenings free for family time and self. My biggest concern here is I need to start real slow with this, too many times when trying to get back to building some firmness, muscle, definition or whatever, I've pulled something from the start and lost momentum. If things work out with this, the cardio in the morning is out of the way quickly, the lunch workouts are very easy for me to head up to the gym, because I don't hate them quite like I hate the cardio stuff.

4. Smoking: I'm not quitting yet, but I definitely need to reduce the amount, by going to the gym twice a day at the very least it reduces the time I have available to smoke.

5. Drinking: None for the next couple months. I need a break from it anyway, but even a night of drinking with friends is horrible from a weight perspective. In truth I get far more rewards from the exercise then I get from drinking anyway. So drinking is out for now, completely. This really shouldn't be a problem, as it's always been something I can pretty much take or leave. Although lately I've found myself having more drinks on a regular basis then ever before, so I'm interested in seeing whether this will be an issue.

6. The goal. Well I've gotten the wife to agree to head out for a couple days vacation for the first week of July. (Yes, it's Vegas again, but the rooms are free for the whole trip, so how can I say no, plus I'm going out there anyway for some work the week after, so the airfare only costs for her). Anyway, July is prime pool time in Vegas and the wife and I are planning for some R&R by the pool. So, there's my goal, I want to feel good in wearing a bathing suit, or at least not feel too bad with it. I really hate putting that sentence down, because it sounds like every woman I've ever known. Oh well, it's the truth.

This is the plan. I think the important thing here is these are all accomplishable changes to my lifestyle. The biggest change will be getting up in the morning, or on days where the wife is working and I'm working and watching the little one, figuring out how to get to the gym later in the day and then figuring out where I put the gym time in where I was going to focus on strength training. But I'll make that work, it looks like schedule wise, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday are all going to be in my control, as those are the day my parents watch the little one if Laurie's working, so if I can just get to the gym for those three days (2 times a day) fitting in one extra cardio shouldn't be an issue. If I can get in a good three weeks of this, I'm confident I can keep this schedule going, besides by that point, the weather should be very warm, and getting out for a bike ride after work in nice weather isn't so hard to do.

Update** 2 for 2 today, I made it out at 6:30 for the cardio and then back at 1 for the weight training. One day in the books, always good to get off to a good start.


Wendy said...

sounds like a great plan... yes, do quit smoking dear Cleveland. Drinking? Well, what's your drink of choice? If you do red wine it balances out the calories, etc.. because after all, red wine is good for you! At least that's what I think : ) Did you write out why you want to achieve all of your goals? It helps make it more real!

Michael said...

Unfortunately wine gives me headaches. Mostly rum or jagermeister it seems. Is it healthy if I mix it with diet soda? I haven't written out why I want to achieve them, I'm horrible with that, this is probably the best I'll ever do at that, I just would never go back and look if I did write it. Besides in truth, it's two reasons, I want to look better, and by doing so I'll feel better, taking care of the physical is going to help me resolve the mental.