6 Weeks Check-in

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I can’t believe we’re already mid-February! The last 6 weeks have flown by and here we are with Valentine’s Day in 2 days. I won’t post what I’ve bought for my OH as he reads this and it’ll give the game away but we’re exchanging gifts tonight as we’re off to the rugby tomorrow 🙂

When I made the decision to change aspects of my lifestyle I did not expect to be sitting here 6 weeks later and 5kg lighter! It’s given me a real boost to get back on track and start posting more regularly (I’ve even drawn up a posting schedule and timeline which may turn into a proper project dashboard haha!)

The last 6 weeks have been filled with ups and downs in different areas of my life. I ate more sugar last week than I have done in the last 3 months combined. I was disappointed in myself but this week I’ve been much more controlled and feel a lot better for it. It’s not worth berating yourself over one sloppy week when you can cheer for 5 good ones plus the ones to come.

There were some problems at work which needed addressing. I don’t like standing up to authority and so I had to dig deep and find some courage to confront the issues. When I need to challenge someone or manage some sort of conflict I’ve always used the DESC method.

DESC is used to resolve conflicts but also to help make situations clearer.

The first step is to Describe what happened. It is really important to stick to the facts and go through the situation in the order things happened. It can sound a bit like “You said, I said” but this is needed to set the scene.

The second step is to Explain how the situation made you feel. Use concrete examples from the facts you have already explained and only speak from your perspective. Avoid speaking about the other person’s emotions – you are not in their head and would only be guessing.

Next you need to Share what you would like to see happen in this situation the next time it happens. Come up with a positive action plan that will either avoid this happening again or enable you to handle it in a more positive way.

Lastly, you need to Compromise on what you will do differently next time. None of us are perfect and there is always room for a little improvement. Offer something that you commit to doing in the future.

This really helps me to breakdown the problem into small facts and explain them in a calm, clear manner. I have used this technique since university and it hasn’t failed me yet. Explaining how things have made me feel is not easy to articulate and I have to find my bravery to get through it but I know that I will feel so much lighter and less stressed when my feelings are out in the open. It is important to hold on to past successes but also to visualise future ones.

It can be really helpful to role-play the conversation in your head to explore different trains of thought and possible points the other person could raise. I find that if I have already projected myself into the situation in my mind and played through it that when it comes to the real moment I am much calmer and able to clearly express what I need to say. It can take a bit of practice before you get it right but it’s worth having a go.

The result of my recent DESC conversation was that I was confirmed in my job on a permanent contract so it really can be worthwhile to go through this method.

Keep Climbing and look up high to see over the problem to the other side.

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POP Pilates Beginners!

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To increase the amount of physical activity I’m doing I’ve decided to start the Beginners 2.0 challenge and the 30 day Waist Trainer Challenge from Blogilates.

I kicked off on Saturday (2nd January) with day one of the WT Challenge and managed to do the 3 exercises. They look fairly straightforward in the illustrations (and gifs) but that reverse crunch is a killer! It’s hard enough to keep my legs up in the air let alone to lift them higher. We’ll see if I get any better at it?

30 day waist trainer day 2

On Sunday we had pre-agreed to go for a run and we did our usual ‘around the block’ route. I only stopped a few times on this occasion and I hope to get to the stage where I can jog the whole route at a steady rhythm. I think if we keep running 3 times a week on this same route I may be able to manage this by end of January maybe mid-February.

After running I did day 2 of the WT Challenge this time increasing the reps to 6 of each exercise – that reverse crunch is still a killer! I followed this up with the POP Pilates for Beginners – Total Body Workout video on YouTube. It’s a 28 minute video which runs through breathing, pilates positions which work your core, legs and arms as well as a lovely big mermaid stretch at the end.

Beginners Day 1

Again it was tricky because I was using muscles that I haven’t spoken to in a long old time and they weren’t so happy to be woken up. It’s now Monday and I’m feeling a bit sore especially in my abs and legs but its a satisfying ache because I feel like I earned it 🙂

Tonight I have more WT challenge exercises to do as well as 2 videos and tomorrow will be another run around the block with more total body pilates and a bum-focused workout.

I’ll check back in on Wednesday with after some more exercise!

Keep Climbing 🙂

Sloth to Sleek – the project

nature-green-grass-high-definition-90I have been overweight for a really long time and have finally found the courage inside to make some changes on the outside.

Growing up in a family where large portions of hearty home cooking were the norm I was always plump but since my last year of university (5 years ago) I have gained a lot of extra weight that I just don’t need to carry any more. I am currently weighing in at 96kg = 211 pounds = 15 stone which is far too much for my 157cm frame!

I have been through some embarrassing moments where people have asked if I’m pregnant or how long I’ve had “weight problems” and it wasn’t enough to spur me into changing something. I’m an emotional eater so when I feel sad or down I turn to food for a burst of happiness. These incidents have each led to a binge of poor food choices and then the sadness comes back.

Yesterday my other half asked me to join him for a run. I hesitated and thought of many reasons why I shouldn’t but realised that I had none for why I couldn’t. I have a body, sports clothes and trainers – that is all you need for running.

This realisation probably seems quite daft to a lot of people but each of us have our own “eureka” moment and this was mine.

I will be using this blog to track my changes from Sloth to Sleek and as a way of keeping myself in check. I will be using fitness resources from blogilates.com as well as YouTube and recipes from various sources to achieve a healthier lifestyle.

I hope to improve not only my health and physical fitness but also my mental clarity and focus.

Here goes nothing…