Before I post about my goals for 2012, I thought I would recap a little bit of my fitness achievements from 2011.
In order to get a big picture, I have to jump back to 2010. You may recall that my mom went into the hospital for 10 weeks the end of 2010. It was an emotionally overwhelming time for me. I am an emotional eater and during times of massive stress like that, not only does the increase in cortisol make it super duper easy for me to gain weight (easier than normal) I also mentally check out with giving a damn about what goes in my mouth. Food becomes soothing, rather than nourishing. I gained quite a bit of weight during the end of 2010 which meant that my 2011 started off with me feeling fat and unhappy.
In fact, when we went to Jamaica in December of 2010 I took almost zero pictures of myself because I looked horrible.
|One of about 5 pictures. Just look at my face, I was still massively stressed out.|
January 2011 I was heavier than I had been in a few years. My clothes didn’t fit and I was miserable. I have had a decades long struggle with my weight and food, but this was the heaviest I had been in about 5 years. Sad panda. I can’t find anywhere where I wrote down how much I weighed, but I know it was the high 170’s. I think 178.
In the spring I did a cleanse and lost about 8 lbs. In mid-March I weighed 168. I continued to lose weight over the year and by late summer was in the low 150’s. I think the lowest I saw, briefly, was 151 or 153.
This morning I weighed myself and I am noting it just to have a starting place recorded. 158.5. A month or so ago I weighed 153.5, so the holiday weight gain came to exactly 5 lbs. Not great, not horrible. I plan to start working on removing that and a few more in the coming weeks.
But, health and fitness and my journey are NOT all about what is on the scale. That is just one measurement, and not that great of a measurement, of fitness.
I have said before that I keep track of the days that I workout on my wall calendar by putting a sticker on it if I work out. I keep it really simple. If I exercise for more than 20 minutes (anything..lawn mowing, walking, weights, yoga, hiking, whatever) I get a sticker. I know some people have elaborate, color-coded systems, charts, graphs, etc., but for me keeping it simple, fun and very visible is a great motivator! I want my stickers!
I reviewed my stickers the other day and discovered that I exercised 151 days of the year. That is about 30 days shy of half the total number of days in the year. Honestly, I was both pretty impressed and a little disappointed with this. 151 days is pretty damn good, but with very little extra effort I could have achieved half of the days. Still, 151 days of exercise is better than no days of exercise, so I am pleased with that.
|Best month: June with 27 days of exercise.|
I also noted that there was only one month where there were zero stickers on the calendar. Now, I could have just been lazy and not put any stickers, but even if I didn’t exercise at all that month (September) I still feel good about doing some type of exercise at least a few days every month of the year but one. That helps build overall consistency, and I like it.
|Worst month: September with zero recorded days of exercise.|
Also, my overall fitness level, though harder to track, improved significantly over the year. My recovery time has decreased. My form for squats and lunges has improved tremendously. My ability to climb the big hill or hike Roxy Ann has increased dramatically. So much so, that even without regular exercise over the last couple of months, when my friends and I hiked the big hill on New Years Day, I was feeling pretty good, wasn’t horribly out of breath and was not sore the next day. Noticeable progress, with which I am pleased.
|Christmas Day 2010|
The other component in my healthy life is food. I would say that I was about 50/50 with food last year. About 50% of the time I was really diligent about what I ate, and the other 50% of the time I wasn’t. This leaves me room for improvement on the healthy eating side of my fitness journey.
|NYE 2011 (Man I look tired! Chris just looks silly, as usual.)|
Looking back over 2011 has helped me to really see what I DID accomplish and areas where I could improve. It also has given me some food for thought as to what my fitness goals for 2012 are going to be.
Did you do a year-end health and fitness review? What kind of progress did you make? What kind of improvements are you looking for in 2012?