Staying on Track in the New Year!

Happy New Year, everyone!

It took me 4 days (oops), but I finally got in my first workout of the New Year this morning! I’m not a big fan of the treadmill that we have in our basement (I’m picky, I know), but I did brave it today because I didn’t want to have to throw elbows to snag a treadmill at the gym.

Crowded gyms are a New Year tradition and while it does bug me that I have to plan a little bit ahead or be ready to change my routine if needed, just remember that you too were new once. I’m the queen of impatience, but not the queen of the gym.. so I’ll be working extra hard the next month to be patient and welcoming with new gym members.

The view from the treadmills at my gym. You'd swear I live a lot farther than just 15 minutes from downtown KC.

The view from the treadmills at my gym. You’d swear I live a lot farther than just 15 minutes from downtown KC.

And hey, if they are doing something completely wrong or against etiquette, speak up! They might just not know the rules of the road yet. As a comparison, I’d rather the FIRST person tell me I have something in my teeth than the last.

So, if you are new to the game or just looking for some extra motivation, here are some of the tips I use to stay on track all year:

Read blogs! I find most my inspiration from reading about others and seeing how they incorporate health into their lives. Nobody’s perfect, but I love following different blogs for exercise ideas, healthy recipes or motivating race recaps. Seeing other people sticking to their goals, helps remind me of mine and why I started in the first place.

Don’t know where to start? These are the 5 I’ve been following the longest: Meals and Miles, Peanut Butter Fingers, Healthy Tipping Point, The Fitnessista and Carrots N Cake,

Meal plan! This one is KEY for Paul and I’s success. If we don’t plan our meals for the week, we tend to eat out or order pizza. It is a struggle because it can be tedious and time-consuming, but planning out our meals on Sunday makes it a lot easier to stay on track during the week.

Here’s what we are having this week!:

Record your progress (or lack thereof)! I personally think keeping a workout log is vital. I’m horrible at it and even worse when I’ve been slacking. So in addition to recording all of my actual workouts this year, I’m also making myself post even when I have a rest day (or an unintended rest day). This way I’m being held more accountable for what I skip. I use the Training Peaks mobile app to track everything.

training peaks

Training Peaks (the basic edition I use) is free! And a great way to get a bunch of nerdy stats (love).

Set a goal that scares you (but break it into small chunks)! Basically fear is my greatest motivator (I’m partially kidding!) J I think I struggled so much in 2014 because I didn’t have any real goals to push myself with. This year I have 2 (Dirty Kanza 200 and Ironman Louisville)… and those goals alone are pretty scary and they keep me motivated, but I still break them down so that they are more management and so I don’t get too overwhelmed. For example, when it comes to my 200 mile bike ride for Dirty Kanza, I’m not thinking about the 200 scary miles. I’m concentrating on making 50 miles easy by the end of January. And for 100 miles to be cake by the training camp I’m attending at the end of March. Similarly, before we dabbled in being vegetarian last year, Paul and I had talked about it a few times before. We never made the leap because we kept on thinking “Won’t we want bratwurst in Germany?” or how will we survive tailgating without hotdogs, and things like that. We were setting ourselves up for failure before we even began. For a long-term goal like being vegetarian, we had to stop thinking SO big picture and take it day by day. Going vegetarian was incredibly easy when instead, we just ripped the bandaid off and stopped eating meat. We took the challenge one day at a time and THAT made it so much easier to swallow (pun intended).

dk 2

A shot from Dirty Kanza. Makes me want to puke and smile at the same time.

 

dirty kanza 1

I can’t wait. Yes, I can. No, I can’t.

Remember there is no ‘one’ way! Being healthy is not a specific formula. It constantly changes and is absolutely unique. You do not have to be vegetarian; you do not have to give up dairy; you do not have to run 5 miles every single day. A lifestyle change can start with just taking the stairs tomorrow at work or it can be joining a gym or committing to a 10k. Small changes can lead to big results and if you do fall of the wagon and eat 12 bags of oreos, don’t beat yourself up about it. You haven’t failed; you have just proven that you are human. You don’t need to wait until Jan 1, 2016 to start over. You have 365 fresh starts every single year.

 

Finally, another fun way to stay on track is through Instagram. I follow hundreds of people who post recipes (Weight Watchers, Paleo, Vegetarian, All Spiralized food (yes, really), their daily runs (or rides), or just about their lifestyle. This month, for example, I’m participating in @discombobruns Medal-A-Day Challenge.

medal a day

Check out my posts (and the hashtag) for a little extra race bling motivation each day in January!

 

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3 thoughts on “Staying on Track in the New Year!

  1. Monika

    Love your blog! Love cats love running as well :) Meal planning is definitely me and my bf’s downfall as well…

  2. Kristen @ Glitter and Dust

    I am the queen of impatience too. It annoys the heck out of my husband. That is quite a view from the treadmill – it looks like you are in the countryside on a very dark and gloomy day. It’s pretty though.

    Thanks for the great list of meal ideas. My husband loves to cook and stops by the grocery store every day on his way home from work (no joke) to pick up ingredients and something fun for dinner. I am spoiled in that I have my own personal chef, haha! I don’t have the patience to cook (queen).

    I use training peaks too and find it really helpful. Love all the numbers and graphs! So excited that you are doing Ironman Louisville!!!

    1. calquist@gmail.com Post author

      I am so jealous! Paul ends up doing most of the cooking since he gets home from work before me so I’m still kinda spoiled, but its a LOT easier if we plan it out ahead of time.

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