I title this entry after one of the residents I care for… Every time she gets up from her seat she says: Get up and go. It usually takes her a couple of times to say it before she actually is up. It might be odd, but I see her struggle to get up as an analogy to starting a diet and exercise program.

Starting a diet and exercise program is tough work… I’m not even going to lie and say that it’s easy. It’s a total change in lifestyle and it requires you to step out of your comfort zone. You have to change your diet and incorporate foods that you don’t normally eat and now schedule in at least 30 minutes of exercise on a regular into what already feels like a hectic schedule. You ALREADY feel like you have no time. With me, it takes me a few times for it to stick. I get up and I go really strong for like a week or two, and then life gets in the way, and I start finding myself missing day, after day, after day, and then I haven’t been to the gym in a week. And I feel SUPER bad about it because I know that when I don’t go to the gym I feel really tired and just am not as energetic as I normally am. I also feel less enthused to do anything. My whole mood changes. So I struggle, but on the times when I slack like that, I just gotta tell myself to “get up and go”, and then I can get back on track again. It might take me a few days, but after a few days, I get back on track and I get back to feeling energetic.

I also think that one of the other reasons I struggle is because I’m constantly looking for ways to change my routine and shake up this plateau I’ve been in. I’m at the point in my program where I’m just 15lbs away from my ultimate goal weight [the last 10-15 are THE hardest pounds to lose], and I feel like this shouldn’t be as hard as it is. I feel like I should be able to lose these pounds in 2 months, but I just have yet to be able to do so. I’ve been reading the notes I posted in an earlier blog about getting past a plateau, so I’m starting with incorporating  strength training and more fruits and veggies. That’s even a tough one. I’m also trying to change up my breakfast. Instead of eating cereal every morning, I’m trying to use breakfast as my opportunity to take in some protein and fruit, since I know protein makes you feel fuller longer throughout the day, and fruits contain good energy sugars. This morning I ate a Special K protein shake, an apple, and some yogurt. It doesn’t seem like much, but I’m full and I know I will probably benefit a little more from it. But I digress from my point!

So, Get up and go! I was having a conversation with one of my friends about how I’m struggling SO much to lose weight. He told me, instead of focusing on trying to lose weight and having weight-loss as your goal, why not focus on making getting to the gym 5x a week and following your exercise program your goal, along with just trying to live a healthier lifestyle? I must say, he has a SOLID point there! We (the “we” that’s trying to lose weight) are CONSTANTLY focusing on numbers to see the results of our hard labor: we count calories, we want to see the scale move (more importantly down), we want to see inches gone. And then when we don’t see any changes in the numbers, we, or let me speak for myself, I, get SUPER frustrated and want to give up. But maybe, if I focus on just getting up and going every day, because I know going to the gym 5x a week will be sufficient enough to keep me healthy and help prevent against any serious diseases, then I will find myself more successful and not get as frustrated as often as I do now. And isn’t that the REAL reason we’re all trying to workout and lose weight ANYWAY? Cause we want to be healthier? Yes, of course we want to lose weight so we look and feel good and being overweight can have some negative side effects, like diabetes, high cholesterol, or fat deposits developing around the heart. But I know my ultimate result, REALLY, is that I just want to be healthy. I want to live a long life and be able to be there for my family and friends. And while yes, it would be nice to have a small waist and not see my love handles hanging over my jeans, I should just be happy with the progress I’ve made.

And CLEARLY I’m doing something right: I ran 4.58 miles last week! I used to HATE running. When I was in 7th and 8th grade, I could BARELY run 1 mile and I think it took me like 15 minutes to run one. I’m almost down to a 10 minute mile (I’m running at about 10.25mph). So, I need to not focus so much on the lack of the numbers changing and just focus on seeing how far I can push myself and see the potential that I really have. I mean, I watch The Biggest Loser and I see these contestants succeed at the extreme of challenges, and this is from day one that they’re on the ranch. I’ve been an avid watcher of The Biggest Loser, so just watching these contestants from episode one to the finale and  seeing how much they improve-it’s REALLY inspiring, hence the reason why I decided I wanted to run a half-marathon, because every season I watch the contestants do it and I always feel like if they can do it, coming from where they started from, I SURELY should be able to do it!

The point of this is just to say: maybe instead of focusing on the numbers, we focus on just getting up, going to the gym, and trying to live a healthier lifestyle. My friend said that he feels that if I stop focusing on seeing the numbers change, that maybe one day, when I step on that scale, I will have lost weight –just like love, when you stop looking for love, it finds you!

Maybe, just maybe, when I stop looking for my goal weight-it’ll come find me!

I’m off to the gym! Cardio + strength training!