Blue Monday Has Nothing On Us!

Hi guys!  Hope you’re having a great week!  Are you still hanging on to those New Year’s Resolutions?  An article that popped up on my phone‘s news app earlier this week that discussed how the third Monday in January (supposedly called “Blue Monday”) is supposed to be the gloomiest day of the year–in part because by now we’ve likely given up on our New Year’s resolutions.  If you’re feeling discouraged, I know exactly how you’re feeling.  But hang in there!  You can do it!  My method to keep myself going this year is to break the big goals down into smaller, more manageable pieces.  As one of my former employers once told me, “crumbs make biscuits.”

One of my goals for the year is to focus more on my health and get back to my fighting weight.  A few years ago, my sister challenged me to start running – something I had always sworn I’d never do.  She had signed us up for a half-marathon, which sounded even worse.  Running sounded hard and sweaty and awful, but the challenge was issued, and I wasn’t about to back down.  Not only did I manage to start running on a regular basis, I managed to complete two half-marathons and a handful of 5ks in about two years.  I wasn’t the fastest, but I finished every race I participated in (even if I had to walk part of it, I kept moving!).

When I went through a period of unemployment after being laid off in 2015, I spent nine months eating my feelings.  (Strangely enough, my feelings at the time tasted a lot like deep-fried cheese and potato chips, and less like salad.) . My weight, self-image, and self-esteem suffered greatly, and I packed on a lot of weight in a short period of time.  I would occasionally take Luna for walks in the park near the house, but walking the dog doesn’t exactly keep up with mountains of fried mozzarella sticks.

When I got back into the working world, my new job was high-stress and a lot of hours sitting at a desk.  I was also nervous, trying to make sure that I did a good job at work instead of trying to take care of myself.  I was focused on establishing myself in my new career, and paid absolutely no attention to my health.  If I remembered to eat lunch, it was usually junk or came in a paper bag – and I packed on more weight.

But this is going to be my year – I’m in a stable position at work, J.D. and I are solidly in the new house, and our Christmas gift to ourselves was a stationary bicycle that we put together upstairs.  J.D. has shin splints that make running difficult for him, and I was looking for something that would be low-impact for my knees.  The ultimate goal for 2018 is to be able to get into shape enough to run a 5k by October.  I’m starting with the bike for cardio, to strengthen my heart and lungs, and work bit by bit to drop weight.  The lighter you are, the easier it is to jog it out…

I’ll confess, I did get a late start.  I didn’t actually get going until January third.  But so far I’ve managed to get in regular exercise, cut out the mozzarella sticks, and drop five pounds (seventy pounds to go!).  It hasn’t been easy.  Some nights when I get home from work, I go straight upstairs, get in thirty minutes of exercise, eat some dinner, shower, and go to bed.  There just isn’t time for much else.  But I always feel better for doing it – it’s something that I am doing to take care of myself after letting things slide for far too long.  (I have to admit, though, my resolution to avoid cheesy movies is shattered – I’m rewatching the Twilight movie as I type up this post.)

What are you doing to take care of yourself this month?  Are you keeping up with any resolutions that you’ve made?  How do you keep yourself motivated?

If you’re struggling with keeping up with your goals, hang in there!  Take it one day at a time, and have a great week!