You know what I need right now? Goals. Something to focus on other than how many projects I should be doing at home, revisiting junior high Spanish with my son, and washing infinite dishes because it seems like it is always meal time when four people are locked up at home. About six weeks ago I joined a 100 mile challenge for Lent, which requires running 100 miles between Ash Wednesday and Easter. That's a lofty goal, and was a bit overwhelming until I broke it down to a weekly goal of about 16.1 miles per week. Guess what?! I only have 4.8 miles to go and four days left to do it, no problem. With those small/weekly goals, I have had no problems sticking to it, and I have no doubt that specific goal was instrumental in keeping me moving during this shelter-in-place time.
Since Lent ends on Sunday, I'm going to need a new fitness goal. On a day to day basis, I need something to make me move. So, I'm going to commit to 10,000 steps per day. Under normal circumstances when I am walking my kids to school, going to work, running errands, etc, that usually isn't a problem. However, these days in quarantine are much harder to meet that goal, so it is going to take extra effort. By paying attention to my steps all day long, I can add extra dog walks or stairs in the house to stay on track.
I know it has been challenging for many of my clients who were on a roll with weekly workouts and food changes for a healthier diet, because we all know that accountability is a great motivator, and now many of us are missing our source of accountability. Let's make ourselves accountable for our own goals. I am encouraging everyone to write one or two goals for the next week, and stick it to your refrigerator, on your bathroom mirror or in your home office. Write a goal (or two) related to your health, which could be food, exercise, sleep, stress management, etc. related. It should be attainable and specific, with a time frame in mind and a reward for meeting that goal. I'll go first:
- I will walk 10,000 steps everyday in April. I will wear my watch to measure steps, and if I happen to fall short one day I will make it up the next day so my average for the week is at least 10,000 steps. I will reward myself with a massage at Galter (when that is allowed!) if/when I achieve my goal.
- I will drink five 20oz glasses of water per day, which can include unsweetened iced tea and sparkling water (La Croix). I will record it in my phone daily. I will reward myself with a Starbucks unsweetened iced green tea at the end of each week (I usually make my own tea).
What goal would make you feel good? Need some ideas?
- Too many snacks? Commit to eat only pre-measured snacks, pre-planned snacks.
- Emotional eating? Try another activity instead of eating (read, call a friend) if it isn't meal or snack time.
- Not enough sleep? Turn off screens an hour before bedtime.
- Not enough fruits and vegetables? Buy frozen on next grocery trip, especially while we are limiting trips to the grocery store.
- Too much takeout? Pick a day to meal plan at home.
Think it through and write it down! For even more accountability, share it with a partner or friend and check in on each other. Once you've mastered it, try another! If it doesn't work this week, maybe it needs to be rewritten for next. Good luck.
Stay home, unless it's for a socially distant walk or run. Wash your hands, and be well!