So, my first four week fitness / life challenge comes to a close this evening. I called it The Force Awakens (yeah, I thought it was cute at the time; definitely proved to be overly optimistic, not to mention wildly out of order). Anyway, about mid-way through, The Empire struck Back and I lost my momentum.
I finished up with an overall completion rate of 47%. The individual activities look pretty bleak as well with the exception that I managed to complete all but two of my daily Portuguese lessons (loving Duolingo).
As for the physical part of the challenge – I’d wanted to incorporate more walking, some yoga and some weight training into my daily routines. My exercise completion rate was 12%, my walk – and I consider walking separate from exercise in that it doesn’t requite any real concentrated effort where as yoga and weight training do. Anyway, my walk rate was 43%. I had wanted to do three walks a day, no particular distance it was more about getting out of the seated position often throughout the day. My weekend retreat allows for some step work; I walk the three flights of stairs at each end of two of the apartment buildings in the complex. Takes me about five minutes or so but man, do I feel it when I’m done. More so than my leisurely jaunts around the buildings at work or the mile and change I manage walking through the neighborhood.
The physical results: going to use the Weight Watchers scale numbers seeing as how it’s the one I have access to the most consistently. Start: 208 lbs., 38.3% body fat. End: 206.6 lbs., 37.8% body fat.
On the life side of the challenge, as I mentioned I practiced enough Portugues to now have a pre-K grasp of the language. I can read simple sentences and recognize a few words when I hear them. Going to stick with Duolingo through the next challenge, and perhaps throw in the Rosetta Stone program I got as a gift awhile back 🙂 so I may level up my speaking skill. I’d like to be able to carry on a limited conversation by the end of July. The other life skills I had on the list included meditating twice a day and playing word games to increase my vocabulary recognition. I managed to meditate most nights but couldn’t get into a morning groove. I may look at moving the morning time from when I wake up to as soon as I get to my desk at work. We’ll see. And while the word games were fun, I don’t feel as if it was effective in helping me build my vocabulary. Might switch to reading the dictionary for so many minutes a day until I have read the whole thing.
All in all, I was able to gather some valuable intel that I’ll be applying to the next challenge.
- Friday thru Sunday – need to make these more flexible, perhaps not schedule so many tasks to complete because those days tend to be less structured, fewer things to attach triggers and reminders to that move me to get things done.
- Stress flips the auto pilot switch allowing me to revert to the “bad” habits more easily. Good idea to have pre-designed game plans on what to do when the poo hits the fan.
- Make meal planning / prepping a priority.
- Make sure breakfast includes adequate protein.
- Baby steps – no need to attempt changing EVERYTHING right off the bat. It’s also not about perfection, but instead about being better today than I was yesterday. Incremental improvement is still improvement (yadda, yadda, yadda. 🙂 )
That’s it. As the sun sets over this, my first challenge, I’m feeling optimistic. Perhaps I should name this next challenge “A New Hope”.
(sort of makes sense to take things back to the beginning, don’t’cha think?)