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Monday, January 21, 2013

Proactive Plans

It’s Monday, and I am feeling pretty good about the start of this week.  I am very happy that my hard work last week paid off so well, and it motivates me to want to continue and expand upon my plan to get slim and, ultimately, find my inner athlete.

Some of you may find this thought process strange, but I will share it anyway.  A few weeks ago I was kind of kicking myself for my perceived failures in recent weeks.  I often engage in thinking, “I wish I was a[n] _____ kind of person.”  The blank could be filled in with organized, or outgoing, or athletic, or self-disciplined, etc., etc.  Many years ago, it hit me that all the wishing in the world would not make me the kind of person I want to be.  I have to get up and be that kind of person.  In other words, I could sit around all day and wish I was a good housekeeper, but if I don’t get up and clean house, it is not going to happen.  I guess I expected God to “zap” me and suddenly I would be whatever kind of person I was wanting to be.  So I have really tried in recent years to be proactive about changes.

As I was thinking about my failures a few weeks ago (I think I was thinking I wished I was more outgoing and friendly, the type that made friends easily), the thought hit me, why don’t you act like you are that kind of person, and then as I am kind of play-acting the kind of behavior that person would exhibit, perhaps new habits would form.  The kind of person I want to be would hold her head up and smile and speak to other people she met.  So I began to do that.  I know that might sound strange, but so many times we are held back by the image we have of ourselves.  If I see myself as this dumpy introvert who doesn’t really have much to offer other people, that is how I tend to act.  I am by nature a positive person, and usually smiling, but I do not take the initiative in making friends and reaching out to people.  So I decided that was what I was going to do.  I started asking myself how the kind of person I wanted to be would act, and then started trying to act that way.

For example, two people in my life are very generous people, always giving gifts to people – like buying them a ticket to a movie they said they would like to see, or remembering someone’s birthday with a small gift, or at least a card.  I decided I wanted to start doing that, as much as I can.  You have to BE a friend if you want to make friends.  So I added everyone’s birthday at work to my calendar, and all my extended family (brothers, sisters, nieces, nephews, in-laws, etc.).  I can at least send a card and let them know I am thinking of them.  To my nieces and nephews, I am sending a small iTunes gift card, or something like that.  I sent my sister flowers for her birthday.  I have just started trying to act like the kind of person I have always admired.

If I ever want to be an athletic person, I have to act like an athlete.  I am very limited to what I can do right now, but I want to start the process of building habits.  That’s the important thing.  And push myself to do more, as long as I am being wise about it.  There is no point in pushing myself so that I cause a flare-up that makes me where I can’t do much of anything for a few weeks.  So, my plan in that respect is to start with what I can do.  I can walk a certain amount, I can do the recumbent bike, I can ride my bike and I plan to start working on some stretches that should improve the condition of my back, strengthen it and increase my range of motion..  I can also get in the hot tub and do stretches and walk around.  I will start building the habit, so that as my condition improves, I can increase the intensity of what I am doing.

I had a satisfying weekend.  Much of it I spent alone, but I was able to do things I wanted to do.  I got more house cleaning done than I have concentrated at one time in a while.  There was always a reason – either pain issues, or kids and dogs over all the time.  But I had the loft mostly to myself, just me and my dog, and I worked on things slowly throughout the weekend.  There is still plenty more to do, but I acted like the kind of person I want to be would act, at least more than I have for a while.  Perhaps a bit too much television, but I at least was up and moving a lot and not just vegging on the couch.  I got out and walked my dog too, and took him to the dog park.  I went to lunch with my kids and went to church yesterday.  A good balance of getting out and doing things and staying home and resting.  My kind of weekend.  I do “wish” I had gotten out on my bike, but I didn’t.  That does push me out of my comfort zone a little bit, so I will have to push myself a little more on that.

I have always been very much of a home body.  I think a lot of overweight people are like that.  We tend to sit on the sidelines of life and watch it go by.  That is something I definitely need to work on.

I have a goal to start dating again in the next few months.  I want to feel better first.  I feel like I will be kind of a drag until I am walking better.  So I have my eyes on that as I am carrying out my current plan.  I did do some dating in 2009.  I didn’t seem to have too much trouble getting dates.  I went the online way.  I was kind of embarrassed about that, but the other day we were talking to a young attorney here in our office who got married on Saturday.  We asked him how he met his bride.  He met her on eHarmony.  He is a very nice looking young lawyer with everything going for him, except he had time restraints (young lawyers have to work a lot of hours).  He met the love of his life through eHarmony and married her.  So if he can find a quality person, I know I can.  I met some nice guys when I was dating.  I actually developed some strong feelings for one guy and kind of got my heart broken a little bit, but that happens when you put yourself out there.  He just had too many things going on in his life then and had to put dating aside (he was having the same type of thing going on that I have had the last few months).  I don’t know what is going on with him now.  I didn’t like the way he ended it, but I still know he is a good person.  I do hope that getting some more weight off will increase the “pool” to pick from.  Most guys are motivated by looks, so being a little slimmer won’t hurt.

I got up and walked my dog (short walk) first thing this morning.  I will walk again at lunchtime, a little longer walk this time, and will work on stretching exercises this evening.  That is the plan for this week.  I don’t know why it is hard to make myself do the stretches, so I am saying it in advance in hopes that will help me carry through with it.  I have to be proactive about getting well.

I had “oatmeal cookies” (Medifast style) for breakfast.  For lunch I am planning on having scrambled eggs.  It is a recipe that is intended to be like the Medifast eggs you buy.  Basically it is Egg Beaters with a fiber supplement.  I may just drink the fiber supplement in a glass of water and not mess up my eggs with it.  We will see how that holds me.  Snack will be a snack bar, dinner a shake, and evening snack some Greek yogurt.  If I get too hungry, I will eat some vegetables of some kind.

I feel optimistic about the coming months if I will keep working on things like I am now.  And that is what I intend to do.

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