Wednesday, December 30, 2009


I made resolutions last year. How did I do, and what are my plans for moving forward?

Health:  I don't think I did too badly on the health front. The desired five days of exercise a week didn't happen until about a month ago, when I started doing fifteen minutes of yoga/strength exercises on the Wii Fit each weekday morning, but I was pretty good about keeping up the three days a week at the YMCA -- I missed a few weeks, here and there, due to holidays or illness, but all in all, I managed to keep that up. My sessions haven't gotten much longer -- from 40 minutes I moved up to 45 minutes, and there I stayed. That's a scheduling issue more than anything else, though, so I suspect it's just going to stay there for a while.  Plus, thanks to Weight Watchers, I lost about 70 pounds in 2009, so I think that's worth some credit. Grade for 2009:  A-

This year: I want to keep up with the morning workout, and possibly expand it somewhat, though once again, I'm pretty limited in my schedule. I might be able to get it up to 20 or 25 minutes, but much beyond that is just not going to happen. My resolution for the gym is to make some alterations to my workout. For a good six months now, I've been doing 30 minutes on the elliptical, followed by 15 minutes either on (usually) the treadmill or (occasionally) the recumbent bike. It's a nice fat-burning cardio workout, but I haven't changed it (except for the resistance and incline levels) in months. And now that I'm approaching 100 total pounds lost, I'm starting to reach a point where mere weight loss isn't enough: my muscles need some serious toning, especially my bad case of flappy-grandmom-arms (which is mostly loose skin, but working on the muscles there will help.) In short, I need to step outside my comfort zone at least twice a week and trade the shorter cardio workout for some weight training. And once I get comfortable with that, I need to start adding some high-intensity intervals to my cardio.

Also, having deliberately fallen off the Weight Watchers wagon for a couple of weeks for the holidays (as much as a test to see how I'd do, as anything else) it's time to get back on it and go back to losing weight. I didn't do as badly as I could have, especially considering the nascent temptation level of the holidays, but I've got at least thirty more pounds to lose before I'll be ready to consider it done. I'd like to think I can get rid of them all this year, but we'll see -- my rate of loss has slowed considerably. I'll settle, if I must, for continuing the downward trend.

Family:  I was supposed to try to meet up with Matt twice a month for lunch, and I pretty much failed at this one, though I think it's at least partially not my fault. One of my projects at work really, really likes meetings, so I'm currently scheduled for a minimum of six of the damn things a week -- three of which snuggle right up against lunchtime (and two of which run through what normal people consider lunchtime). Combined with my three trips a week to the gym and my once-a-week allergy shot, my schedule is pretty crazy. And the day that I'm most free to go out to lunch (Thursday) is the day that Matt's office has their big meeting. And combined with that is the whole Weight Watchers thing: eating out is kind of a stress for me, because I have impulse control issues. Grade for 2009: F

In the end, though, those are pretty much just excuses. Twice a month might be too ambitious, but I think I could resolve to manage at least once a month. Especially if I build it into my mental structure so I can plan a light dinner, to take some of the stress off the eating-out thing.

Personal:  Well, I'd wanted to scale back on WoW, and I did... I gave up and quit entirely. It didn't make me very happy -- the game was about 80% of my social life -- but I'd discovered that I just wasn't capable of playing only once or twice a week. If the game was available, I'd log in, just because it was easy and right there. So I quit, and while I still spend a lot of nights just dorking around on the computer (Facebook games are evil) I've also started (slowly) to get caught up on my scrapbooking (I'm almost through August!) and I'm spending more time reading, which is, quite frankly, very nice. I was pushing along on the writing front for a while, but it seems to come and go in spurts. And I did buy that SLR camera I was talking about (my diet reward for dropping below 200 pounds) and start taking pictures again, and I'm enjoying that, still. The decluttering project is happening, albeit very slowly, but just knowing that we have the storage unit available and that I can clear stuff out and pack it away if I want to has been a big relief. Once in a while I get a wild hair and clean out a closet or a book shelf, and take a bunch of boxes over to the thrift store and another few boxes to the storage unit, and I feel much better. Matt and I took a day off in August to clean out the kids' stuff, and that did a lot of good for my level of Stuff-Stress, too. Emotional baggage is... somewhat better, I think, but could still use some work. Grade for 2009: C+

This year... it's hard to say. I want to keep up with the decluttering, and the scrapbooking, and the photography. I'd like to pick the writing back up again, but I don't know if I have the discipline. One thing that's become surprisingly high-profile in my brain is social activity. I've always been a bit of an introvert, and I do need plenty of downtime, but it's really surprised me how much, the last few months, I've really craved the company of others, and how much I've enjoyed the evenings we've managed to have friends over. So I'm thinking that's something to try to work on, as well. Matt's offered many times to let me take his place on Rock Band Nights; I think I'll start taking him up on it once in a while. And to invite friends over more often, as well.

Overall grade for 2009: C.  Some spectacular achievements, some spectacular failures, and some reasonable efforts.

Prognosis for 2009: Not too bad. I think I've made my goals fairly reasonable and attainable. They're things I want to do as much as things I ought to do, which makes a difference. Here's hoping for a good start to the decade!

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