Following the Aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings in April, I felt that I turned a little too much to food for emotional help. It was then just hard to get back in a groove for May, June and especially July. I know the super is toughest, but after four summers you think I would have some sort of handle on it. Well, apparently I don't. That's okay. It's feedback not failure. So near the end of July I started seriously tracking again. I went so far as to actually turn to paper tracking (not just using the WW website/app). I know right? Crazy. But it worked. I tracked for 22 consecutive days on paper and got back to my lowest weight as an adult - 153.4 - that I had only seen once previously (December 2012).
I was feeling AWESOME.
During many of my Weight Watchers meetings last week, I was noticing that people were having the "ugh" feelings I had over the summer. Well, getting Back 2 Basics works for me when I need a kick in the pants that I thought it may work for my groups too. For a few groups, I let them design their own Back 2 Basics challenges since they know their group needs best. But for others I went with my favorite Back 2 Basics tactics.
So here goes...
If you are someone looking for to refocus your weight loss/healthy eating efforts and need a supportive group of folks to help, this challenge is for you. Please know you DO NOT need to be a WW member to participate in this challenge. These work for anyone that is looking for help.
In addition to the challenges that will be listed below, we also have a private FB group where you can post questions or share any thoughts you want. Additionally, there will be a google excel spreadsheet where you can add your name and keep track of how often you complete that week's task.
So what are the 6 topics you may ask, here they are:
Week 1: Track - 9/9
Define for yourself what that entails. You can use Weight Watchers, MyFitnessPal, a journal, a post-it note - anything that will help you pause before you eat something and ask: "Is it really worth it?"
If you are someone who is already tracking/writing down your food, feel free to try a different way to track or give pre-tracking a try (writing down what you will have before you eat it - day before, hours before, etc).
Some people may also want to set reminders on your phone or computer. Let's say you eat breakfast at 8. Have the reminder pop up at 8:30 saying "Have you tracked your breakfast yet?" Then you won't forget later in the day.
GOAL WITH TRACKING is progress not perfection so aim to track at least 5 out of the 7 days this week!
Week 2: Weigh & Measure - 9/16
Oh boy does this bring me back to reality when I start to stray. ;) Measuring cups and food scales don't lie. A serving size is a serving size. :P
If you have measuring spoons and cups or a food scale, take them on out. Keep them in a more visible location than say the back of the "junk" drawer of your kitchen.
I like to keep my food scale right next to my blender and toaster so I see it whenever I am in the kitchen.
Many of us weight and measure right at the beginning of our journeys but it is one of the first things to fall by the way side when it gets "annoying." So make it a game. See if you can guess the weight/serving size before you use your tools. That sounds fun right? Okay work with me - it will get you to get back into the routine of doing it.
Plus the more we weigh and measure at home the better we will be out at restaurants, etc. :)
Week 3: Good Health Guidelines - 9/23
Now this is a Weight Watchers concept, but they can be translated to anyone. The GHGs help create a more well-balanced diet as one focuses on making sure to get enough liquid (water, non-booze), healthy oils, fruits/veggies, dairy/dairy substitutes, lean meats and whole grains.
Are you focusing too much on fruits/veggies and not getting enough lean meats? Then make that your priority for the week.
But how will we know what we are missing? Tracking. Take this time to look back at the first two weeks of tracking and see where you need to make some slight adjustments. Take a look and make a game plan for Week Three.
Maybe lunch you can add some whole grains or replace the afternoon snack of popcorn with some veggies.
Week 4: Try A New Food Or Recipe - 9/30
Humans tend to eat the same 15-20 items all the time. Hellooooo boring. ;)
Sometimes when we take a "relaxed adherence to our plan" it is the lack of variety has finally taken its toll.
We can only have oatmeal for breakfast so many times before we declare we NEVER want to see oatmeal again in our life. :P
So this week, try as many new food or recipes as you want.
Have you been thinking about trying a purple pepper, but just don't know what to do with it? Have you toyed around with the idea of sampling a garden burger? Find a friend and give 'em a try! Or just hit up google to find a fun new recipe that uses that purple pepper.
Week 5: Drink Water - 10/7
I personally LOVE water, but I just forget to drink it. I bought the Plant Nanny app on my iPhone for I think 99 cents and it has changed my life. It gives me a goal amount of water every day, I enter it into the app each time I drink water and my little animated plant grows. Ahhh! Cute! If I don't hit my goal or don't log my water the plant becomes sick and dies. Pressure! It seems so simple, but it works for me.
What do you need to do drink more water? Keep a water bottle with you at all times, make yourself drink a bottle of water before each meal or snack, add flavor to your water to make it less bland, etc.
Week 6: Move More Or Try A New Exercise - 10/14
Not only can we get into a rut with our eating it can happen with our exercise routines as well. So maybe this week you will finally try that Zumba class you wanted to or you buy that workout DVD you've had your eye on.
Variety is the spice of life.
If you are not a gym rat, that's fine. ALL movement counts!!! So this week you could challenge yourself to only take the stairs for the entire week.
We are heading towards winter so maybe start experimenting with new activities that will work for you once the snow/cold weather come. Do you have indoor activities prepared for the bad weather? Let's find some together!!
So there are the six weeks of tasks. We work on one small change each week so that we can head into the Holiday Season remotivated, refocused and rejuvenated.
Does this sound like a plan to you?
If so, please free to send me an email - firstname.lastname@example.org - with your full name and we will get you the info to be added to our FB group.
If you are already in the FB group from the last challenge, just hang out and add your name to the Google Doc when it is posted.
Let's Do This Folks!! :)