Earlier in April I was out on a walk, trying to bank some steps onto my FitBit (do you have one? can we be friends and race to our daily steps?) and thinking about some of the upcoming items on my list that are decidedly fitness/health related:
1. Try Paddleboarding
6. Hike 40 miles of trails in Illinois
9. Lose 25% of my body weight
11. & 12. kayaking/paddleboarding at sunset and sunrise
27. Complete a Mud Run
I was thinking about preparing specifically for #27, but also still trying to wrap my mind around #9 and how I want to accomplish this goal. As a woman who has thought about her weight constantly since age 10, I’m not keen on the idea of another diet. I’m not willing to deal with restriction in any way that removes pleasure from my life. I am here on this planet to enjoy it. HOWEVER, and this is a super-important-however-i –need-to-face….my body hasn’t been feeling good. I can’t get around that fact. My digestive system doesn’t feel right most days, my body is stiff and my joints are achy. And my body is just plain heavier to move around. It’s not like I only eat food that is amazing and delicious. I eat a lot of crap too. Easy, convenient crap – does it even taste good? I honestly don’t know. I could be making better choices. It’s the getting myself to make those better choices that is going to be key.
Earlier that same morning, I was still in bed slowly waking up, trying to decide if I’d go for that walk. I’d been dealing with muscle spasms in my calves that I wasn’t sure weren’t muscle tears (they weren’t!) when I asked myself, “What would the fit version of myself decide to do?” And I answered, “Fit Erin would go for a walk.” So I did.
So far in the few weeks since I’ve been asking myself, “What Would Fit Erin Do?” (WWFED) It’s helped me order a delicious salad over a fatty sandwich, it’s helped me skip the bagel and Starbucks mocha in favor of the green smoothie I had waiting to be made at home, it’s pushed me to trust my body to go further. It’s gotten me to bank my first 18K steps in a day. I love Fit Erin!
I also quickly realized that Fit Erin would know what her starting point is so she knows how to prepare for the journey ahead. I’ve started by collecting data.
- I am using the Fit bit to track my steps with a goal of 10,000 steps a day. I have a really sedentary job (I am 10 steps away from the bathroom, the copier and my file cabinet) with an hour commute at either end of the day. When I started out tracking steps I started by altering nothing to my day to see how many steps I naturally took each day. roughly 3500. I was shocked by how low the number was! So I quickly learned that the only way to reach 10,000 was to go for a walk every morning before work. I am now walking about 2.5-3 miles every morning. My current goal is to have at least 5000-6000 steps complete before I leave for work. My future goal is to work running back into the mix. Fit Erin is totally into it.
- I am using Fit bit to track my calories. I am using this just as data gathering for now. I am not restricting what I eat in a prescribed way, if I go over the suggested amount, I go over the suggested amount but I take a good look at what pushed me over the edge. Was it worth it? Only Fit Erin knows for sure. My goal was to first figure out what kind of damage my current eating was doing to my calorie intake. The most shocking: an 1150 calorie burrito from Chipotle. This was a standard burrito for me. I had no idea. My second goal is to make adjustments to what I’m eating so that I meet the calorie limit more often than not. The Fit bit tracking feature will keep track of carbs/fat/protein and vitamins and I’ll pay more attention to that later. For now, I’m just finding my rhythm. But I’m making changes. You won’t find me going Vegan or Paleo or whatever is the popular diet these days. But you will find me returning to more home cooked meals, more locally sourced foods, better food in general.
- Next on my list is building strength, flexibility and body confidence – not body image, actual confidence in my body’s abilities. One of the worst consequences of neglecting my body/health for so long is the lack of confidence, and sometimes straight up fear, that I now have about my ability to do certain things I physically used to be able to. Also, I totally have baby muscles now. Fit Erin has guns, I’m pretty sure.
So maybe you’re on a fitness journey too. Maybe you’ve got some good ideas to share with me. I’m looking for community with this one.
What would the Fit YOU do? let me know!