Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Side Effects?

I shared a couple of weeks ago about my wake up call regarding my health. I knew it was time to do something, but I also know myself well enough not to dive in head-first. I knew that I needed to work my way in slowly. So I started with a couple of simple changes.

I got a great book on Kindle a few weeks ago called 42 Days to Fit and decided to start the challenge.  Honestly, when I read the first food challenge, I thought, "No way - I can't do this." (In case you're wondering, the first challenge was giving up extra sugar, including desserts and sugary coffee creamer, and even - gasp - diet drinks.) I was terrified as I bought only sweets that I don't like (for my husband and kids) and picked up ingredients for paleo coffee creamer from Pinterest. Around that same time, @TufMotherRunner posted a Twitter challenge to #DumpDietCoke. I knew I'd need the extra encouragement, so I joined in.

It hasn't been perfect. The first day, I hated the paleo creamer because I was used to such sugary coffee. I added a little bit of sweet cream to make it bearable. The next day, I actually loved it. I'm still adding a little cream, but I'm working my way down to just the paleo creamer. I've had Coke or Diet Dr. Pepper four days in the last week and a half - not perfect, but better than my 2-3 a day habit just a couple of weeks ago. Saturday I had a piece of cake at a birthday party, and yesterday I had a small piece of pie. I'm doing better and making progress, though, and as I shared on Monday, being imperfect shouldn't keep me from being better.

This week, I'm finally starting the fitness challenge, thanks to an extra nudge from Run Like a Mother and their 5K Finish It plan. I'm not sure what my final fitness routine will look like. I have to balance finishing school with the specific fitness needs my soon-to-be career as a dental hygienist requires. (I did a research paper on the effects of repetitive stress in the field and the workouts RDH's should do - fascinating stuff, but I digress.)

I'm already noticing side effects from this challenge. I'm sleeping better. I feel better. My blood pressure is better. I could get used to these side effects. I really like the way I feel. What's really exciting is knowing that as the book builds on itself, I'll feel even better. More small changes will have more positive side effects.   I can't wait to find out what the rest of the side effects are!

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