Welcome to the New You 12-Week Challenge! I’m excited to be able to offer a forum for change and to provide as much information as you’ll tolerate!
To help you get started, this week’s Focus Point will be “I’m in, now what?”
Let’s take each part of the challenge and break it down.
1. Track everything you eat and drink
Why is this important? Studies show that people who write down what they eat tend to lose more weight than those who don’t. It gives you a clue on where your calories are coming from and you can pinpoint areas of ‘weaknesses’ in your diet while also identifying specific opportunities where you can make changes and improvements.
For the next few days (three is ideal) I am going to suggest you write what you eat without making any dietary changes. This is going to be your baseline. If you can, include portion sizes (1/2 cup, handful, etc.).
Don’t worry about making changes. Yet. This is a big topic so I’m going to post in further detail on Wednesday.
2. Workout at least 5 times each week for at least 30 minutes per session
Working out means to exert oneself. If you are able to carry on a conversation and a latte at the same time when you walk with your friend, you are not exerting yourself. Your workout should include:
- Increased respiration (breathing)
- Increased heart-rate
Take a class, go for a fast walk, hike or run. Ideally you should do some sort of cardiovascular exercise 4-5 days per week and include strengthening moves (using weights, bodyweight exercises, or some form of resistance training) 2 times per week minimum.
If you are experienced and already exercising try adding 5 minutes to 3 of your cardiovascular workouts. Walk, run or hike just a smidge further. This little increase in time will deliver huge benefits.
If you are new to exercising and do not have access to a gym or trainer, I want you to find 30 minutes each day for the next 5 days to walk. Pick a loop, a track or an out and back. Walk briskly and with purpose. We’ll cover more intensive workouts later.
3. Track your progress
But first, set your goal. Weight loss, improved fitness, cutting out junk food, etc. Now you can determine how to track your progress so you stay motivated and inspired.
For weight loss, try using a pair of pants as your gauge as well as a scale. Why both measurements? A scale can be friend or foe but pants never lie. Weigh yourself today and try on a pair of pants that are too tight to wear in public. Take a photo or a good long mental picture. In 2 weeks, try these pants on again and see how they fit. And again in the next 2 weeks. Etc.
If your goal is to run faster or longer write your current time and distance of your longest run today. Continue to track your workouts (building on them) and in 2 or 3 weeks time a run or clock a longer distance. And then build from there.
To eat healthier and cut out junk food, start by counting the days in a row you don’t eat the chips. You may think Day 1 isn’t that impressive but I promise, you’ll be tickled at Day 15.
**Do not underestimate the power of these little successes**
4. Email me
Use me as a resource. I am very interested in your success and am here to help you navigate your journey.
On Wednesday we’ll take the food tracking/journaling part to its next level. Have a great day!
Now go run!