My first blog entry was at the end of January. Therefore I am considered February to be the first month in my "sparkpeople" journey.
I have actually found myself telling others about the website. I'm typically very low key about what I'm doing on a personal level. On the same token, when I find something that I love and seems to work, I do not keep it to myself.
Reflecting over the last month leaves me with some key thoughts as to how I feel about the beginning of this experience:
I really don't like winter. Living in Maine leaves me little choice except to deal with it. In an attempt to make sure that I was still getting out and about and not feeling like a house prisoner, I took a few expeditions snow shoeing. Not only was the extra cardio great for my weight loss efforts, I have to admit it was fun. I enjoyed being outside with my family and the feeling of accomplishments breaking new ground next to my husband. The really cold days I still refuse to venture out into the great outdoors, however this is one FREE way to enjoy the winter and I'll take it.
I bought a stationary bike nearly 4 years ago and NEVER used it for more than ONE WEEK at a time. When I say at a time, I'm talking about 8-9 month periods in-between. I discovered in February that I'm not a super huge fan of riding a stationary bike. It forever says to me "Peddle your little heart out and literally get NO WHERE". However, on the same token, it's a great way to change up my cardio routine when I've feeling stuck in the same ole same ole. It is also a great stress reliever and my goal is to go 10 miles in 20 minutes. In the beginning of the month it took me closer to 30 minutes to make 10 miles. By the end of the month I can get to 10 miles in 22 minutes. I'm hopeful that I will successfully hit this personal goal in March.
I pulled out my "Power 90" Videos. In February I had a few days of inconsistencies. Taking a day off here or a day off there. However the proof is in the workout itself. The first day I did the sculpting exercise I was using 5lb. weights and could NOT complete all the sets. Pushups? Forget about it. The very first day I just skipped them altogether. In the Sweat Routine I skipped A LOT of things while gasping for breath and making rude comments to the smiling jumping people on TV.
The last week of February, I was looking forward to doing the videos. My husband who had been witnessing this change in me to come home and go straight to actually started to join me which was a bonus! Not only was I able to complete all the repetitions, I increased in the last week to 8lb. weights for MOST of the exercises on the sculpting and even though I am still very winded, I'm able to keep up without skipping anything on the Sweat workout. These videos are a two phase plan. Right now I'm in phase 1-2 and I'm hoping that by the end of March I'll be moving to phase 3-4 for the FIRST TIME ever. This is an accomplishment I am looking forward to!
Along with the increased exercise I took a real good look at my sleep habits. I joined the sleep challenge although have NOT been sticking to the plan. My goal for March is to actually make this 4 week plan a 4 week plan. On a side note though, just the little bit I did has lead to MAJOR changes. Between exercising and actively getting my butt in bed before midnight, I am most consistently sleeping better. I continue to improve in this area and it feels GREAT.
I have pretty faithfully be tracking my nutrition everyday. I was GENUINELY amazed to learn how many calories that certain products contained and even more so amazed at how my eating habits over the last year have contributed to my weight gain. I honestly never realized how many calories A DAY with NO EXERCISE I was consuming. No wonder I felt horrible! It's been fun also checking out the Spark Recipe site as well and getting the family in on it. Delicious smoothies, Soups, and whole wheat pancakes have been a few of the recipes we have found and tried at home. I will continue to utilize the fabulous resource. At the start of the month it was difficult to not use up all my calories by lunch. Now not only is it becoming easier to plan my meals with a healthy balance, I don't have moments where I feel like I'm starving and ready to eat everything in site. LOVE IT!
February was the beginning of a lifelong journey for myself. I am looking forward to March. I can feel the change in my physical body. My back pain is subsiding, overall most days I have energy to spare when I get home instead of feeling like I'm ready to hibernate. It's a wonderful feeling as well to actually see RESULTS. I may not be losing weight as fast as I had originally hoped, only averaging a little less than 1 pound per week, however the reality is I have results. I'm making progress, and I am feeling better than I have in a really long time. THAT IS WHAT MATTERS. It's not the number on the scale I was ready to take a hammer too in the past, it's the smile on my face and my families.
So there is my First Month in review. Onward and downwards (haha, get it, the scale....) TO MARCH!!!!!!
P.S. To all my Spark Friends, you guys have also contributed to such great success. I appreciate your motivational comments, your encouragement, and sharing this journey together. SO A SPECIAL THANK YOU TO ALL OF YOU!!!! WE ARE IN THIS FOR LIFE!!!!!! ^___^