Welcome to body and weight Wednesday. I wasn’t planning on doing another update on my Happy Body progress until the end of April, however recent events warrant some discussion. If you have ever undertaken a “get healthy and fit” plan, you may have experienced challenges and setbacks while working towards your goals. Statistically speaking, most people that set a goal to get healthier, fail to reach their target and often back slide to worse health after their efforts peter out. Frequently, one of the reasons for falling short is that the goal that they have set is either not clearly defined and therefore unachievable or they have set a goal that is too lofty and outside their current capacity.
If you would like ideas on how to set goals and achieve them, I would recommend listening to my interview with Janet Caliri (Episode 36). She is an expert on change and transitioning to a new you. She has a novel and ingenious way of tracking progress that can conscious create real and lasting change for you. In fact, this weekend I’ll be participating in a mini-event with her that utilizes that technique. I am looking forward to the experience.
So what happened to me this last month?
First let me summarize the background of how I got where I am. Last year, my partner became interested in getting fitter and purchased a four pack of body composition scans with Dexafit. On December 1st, curious about my own composition, but not really thinking to make any changes I used one of his scans. I talk about my results and reaction in Episode 18 (Would you like to change your body?) Basically, I learned that, although I was pretty much the same weight as I have always been, I had gained fat and lost muscle. This explained why I felt weaker than ever.
Then came the hard choice of doing something about it. I talk about that process in Episode 21 (Choosing an Happy Body). The Happy Body program is a youthfulness health program that provides a complete plan for eating, exercising, relaxing and dealing with mental obstacles created by Aneila and Jerzy Gregorek. I interview Jerzy in Episode 25.
I committed, one day at a time, to the exercise program – since muscle was my big issue. I was also inspired to integrate a couple aspects of their food program into my program. I wasn’t sure I could do it, but I was determined to get fit. How I got fit didn’t matter, but it seemed that unless I took action, I was not living in integrity. Taking care of my body is important to me and stopping the aging process is one of my passions. If I wasn’t willing to DO something when it was clear I had a weak spot, then I was all hot air.
It turned out to be easier and more fun than I imagined. I have two episodes that update how well it was going at four and six weeks: episode 27 and 32. Then the honeymoon ended. I had started with a base weight of 2 pounds and quickly moved up to 8 pounds. Realizing that 8 pounds was pushing it, I dropped back to 7 pounds. However, after a couple weeks, 7 pounds kept feeling heavier and heavier. Where once I would proclaim with glee, “It’s happy body time”. I was now dreading the exercises. It used to be that once I started I could feel my body get more energized, but now I was a piece of dead meat. My body was not happy! What happened?
Realizing I needed to get a grip on my failing enthusiasm, I reviewed the obstacles to change and broadcast that as episode 34. This started my process of getting clarity on right action. If my body wasn’t happy, I was pushing too hard. I realized I needed to let go of the past and drop my weights from 7 pounds to 6 pounds. I also reduced the number of times I did each exercise to 5 instead of 6, which made the routine only take 30 minutes.
As I was dropping weights, my body weight was creeping up. Yikes! I was eating too much and knew it, but I was experiencing the obstacle of “not wanting to do anything about it”. Finally, I moved outside of the ideal weight range and I allowed that to motivate me. Although, I wasn’t planning on doing a body composition scan until April, I knew that doing one sooner would motivate me to stick to my eating plan. I scheduled one for two weeks later.
This would also still my nagging worry that I wasn’t doing enough to gain muscle. I suspected that increased gardening and construction activity (since the weather was exceptionally nice) led to decreased ability to do the exercises. The Gregoreks warn that endurance type exercise, like running can actually burn muscle. I was concerned that I might be burning muscle faster than I was building it. Since there was no way to know if I was gaining muscle without a body composition scan, this was another reason I wanted a body composition scan.
After I scheduled the scan, I relaxed. I also dropped my weights down to 5 pounds. Finally, my body started feeling happy with the workout. I finished feeling energized once again. Four days later I was back up to 6 pounds and a week after that I was up to 7 pounds. I am noting that the increases in weights are associated with a streak of rainy weather that is limiting my outside activities. This will inform my progress in the future.
On Monday, I had my body composition scan. Just like the Gregoreks promise, I gained 0.25 pounds of lean mass each week. The scan said I had 1.3 pounds more muscle than my February scan. It seems to work like clockwork. I was elated! Even with the drop in dumbbell weights, my body continued to increase in strength. I know I don’t “need” to do another scan, but I also see how important it is to me to actually validate the effort I am putting in. I’ll repeat at the end of April.
Now, I am actually thinking about adding Bikram yoga as an additional strength and flexibility building activity. Especially with the continued rain in the forecast. My body is happy again and I craving more fun! This is how it was the first time I went up in dumbbell weights. My body kept saying, “Give me a little more to do!”
One of the things I notice about my ability to be successful, was my willingness to adjust what I was doing to work with circumstances. It took me awhile, but I eventually reduced my work-out till it became easy again. I have the tendency to think that it has to be a little hard to create results. However, the truth is that “easy does it”.
- Where are you working too hard in your own life?
- What can you change that will create more ease?
- What can you choose that will create change with ease?
- What beliefs are you hanging onto that no longer serve you?
- Who are you trying to please by limiting yourself?
- What if the change you are asking for is easier than you imagine?
- What would, surrendering to what is, do for you?
That is what I ultimately had to do. I let go of past achievements to return to ease. I started afresh and was able to capture my enthusiasm again.
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If you are feeling stuck and would like to have a session with me, visit my website at changeanythingnow.com to find out more. Sessions for this podcast I do for free. How does it get better than that?
Cheery Monday by Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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