It's high time I reported in on my plan to make small and lasting health-related changes in my life this year.
It turns out that a small change every week is too much to expect, so I'm going to stop numbering them that way. It makes me feel like less of a slacker.
First change: Weigh in and record my weight every Monday.
My scale is broken and I have yet to have it fixed or replaced.
Second change: Do strength training exercises developed for cancer survivors. Work up to about thirty minutes, three times a week.
I've done these exactly six times in the six weeks since I last updated. It's too easy to talk myself out of doing the exercises. On run days, I tell myself that I'm too tired or don't have time and on non-run days I either don't think about it or don't want to do the exercises in my street clothes. I'm lacking both structure and discipline.
I've been pondering going swimming. I also did something last week that I may live to regret. I bought a twenty class fitness pass from a local gym. It only cost twenty dollars, and I have two years from the first class to use up the pass. It's pretty low risk but I'm worried I'm going to hate it.
At least it addresses the structure question.
Third change: Drink no more than five alcoholic drinks per week.
I seem to be better at breaking old habits than starting new ones. I've had no problem with this goal.
Fourth change: Drink more water.
My original goal was to drink around ninety ounces a day. That was unrealistic and made me feel hungry,jittery and even a little nauseated. Also, I was constantly running to the bathroom. Instead, I am now aiming for the more realistic eight glasses a day. This is no problem for me.
Fifth change: Meditate every day. Start at five minutes and work my way up to twenty.
I suck at meditating. I just can't seem to still my brain, even if only for a few minutes. I find myself making lists, wondering what to do next, even mentally writing blog posts about how hard it is to meditate.
I suppose I should keep trying, as lots of folks I respect tell me how much they gain from their daily practice. It's a struggle though. I'm comfortable with silence. I don't tend to listen to my ipod when I go for walks or running but I do find sitting still and silencing my thoughts to be hard, hard, hard.
And see above re "structure" or lack thereof.
Sixth change: Always sit down to eat.
It's a very interesting experience to notice how often I pop food into my mouth while standing up. Sometimes, I only think about my plan to change after I'm done. But it's a good habit to break and I'm glad I'm doing it.
Eighth change: Take all my vitamins and supplements.
A while ago, I became so overwhelmed with the amount of vitamins and supplements that had been recommended for me that I just stopped taking any of them. The bottles were taking up way too much room in my kitchen cupboard and I couldn't find a vitamin box big enough to accommodate them all. I everything up in a box and put it in the bathroom in my basement.
Last Thursday, I found a giant pill box and spent half an hour on the week end getting organized. Yesterday, I took most of the vitamins (at different times throughout the day) and had raging heartburn by early afternoon.
Today, I have yet to take any.
I have recently re-connected with my nutritionist and we're going to review the supplements I'm taking, at an appointment two weeks from now. I'm also confused about interactions. Some vitamins should be taken with others and some shouldn't. Some taken with food and some not. Is it any wonder I put them all in a box in the basement?
Perhaps I should be setting priorities. What should those be? Calcium? Vitamin D? Fish oil?
Anyone else out there have the problem of getting heartburn when you take vitamins?
As always, I welcome your thoughts and feedback. What changes have you made for your health in the last while? How's it working out?