Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Still Here

And still making little colored check marks on my little calendar. I lost my mojo just a little at the new month--I had to write the little dates in the little boxes and I only just did that now. How can I possibly be expected to make little check marks in boxes with no dates? I mean really, people.

Exercising hasn't been happening much. Flossing has been intermittent. The post-it fell down. I need a new flossing post-it. I'm doing fine with the food guilt thing. I even said no to dessert the other night. Because I was not hungry and not because my mental contortions said that my calorie budget couldn't take it. Go me.

And I have this going on, so I'm a little overwhelmed with, you know, stuff.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Crazy Busy

Imagine my surprise when I realized that I hadn't updated since Monday. I remember feeling extra energetic early in the week, so much so that I couldn't quite remember why I had felt so buried the 2 weeks before. But taking the energy I used to spend obsessing over food and spending it on something else does not actually give me more time. Plus, I went to the doctor twice this week (nothing wrong--just needed prescriptions) and had to work extra hours to make up the time. So I had some long days and an excess of aggravation (the second doctor's appointment shouldn't have been necessary, but I'll spare you the rant).

So the end result is that I spent Wednesday and Thursday evening on the couch with the hubby watching TV (like most people) instead of sitting at the computer, writing away. I don't mean just blogging--I'm changing careers to become a freelance writer and I can't even justify the time it would take to look and see if I've mentioned that here before. But I start working part time (5 hours a day instead of 8) the week after next and that'll give me more time to write (and breathe). Hopefully, I won't end up spending all of the extra time doing housework because I'm a woman and undone housework nags at me possibly even more than unrevised essays that need to be finished up and sent out by a certain date.

M, W, Friday: Check
Tuesday and Thursday: Not so much

Every day but Monday, when I forgot for some reason.

Food Guilt:
Every day. It feels really good and when I weighed myself on Wednesday, I'd lost 2 pounds from the previous Wednesday. And there was definitely less stress eating, because there was less stress. I'm still so busy I can't see straight, but it's a lot easier to get through it all when I'm not doing mental calculus every time I'm trying to decide what to eat. I think I may also be less hungry because I'm not thinking about food all the time. I'm looking forward to next week's weigh-in.

I'm also thinking I'll plan on one indulgent meal a week. Before, I could only have one if I budgeted for it. Which led to the situation where I live close to some of the best Indian restaurants in the city and hardly ever go to them because I can't afford all the cream sauce. Yesterday, we went to Shake Shack where I felt that the double burger was actually too much food. I get the double because in the past, I was still hungry after having a single. Next time, I'll go back to the single.

Monday, April 21, 2008

A Chubby Girl Can't Win

Well, some days, anyway. 

Faith of That is So Queer was kind enough to steer me to a specific post on Kate Harding's fantastic blog, Shapely Prose. It's about how we fool ourselves into thinking that we'll be different, better, more exciting people if we just become thin.

Today, Shapely Prose has a post about someone who wants to convince their overweight and unhealthy-for-other-reasons friend to see a doctor. The post includes links to a site aimed at helping us find doctors who won't harp on our weight.

And so it was with this in mind that I went for my appointment with my new, in-network GYN. (My old GYN always gets mentioned when people start e-mailing around asking for recommendations. She is awesome and I'd hoped that she'd deliver my theoretical, someday babies. But I changed insurance and my new plan doesn't pay for out of network at all. So I'm shit outa luck there.)

So, new GYN. We discussed my medical history, that I need to exercise more (which I brought up--see Phase 1). She equated exercise with chemo. If your doctor said you needed chemo, then you wouldn't say you were too busy. So we're focusing on my health and not my size. She gave me some recipes for calcium-rich foods and suggested I consume more calcium. She didn't ask me if I was planning on making babies (several friends have complained about GYNs who didn't pay much attention to them because they weren't in baby making mode) and she didn't tell me to lose weight.

So I was feeling pretty good about her as I headed into the exam. The hospital gown could've been bigger, but I'm not that overweight. It's possible they have big girl gowns and didn't think I needed one. Whatevs.

She takes my weight, she takes my height, does the exam, yadda, yadda. As she's wrapping up, she reviews what we discussed, my prescription, etc. and then she says, "we just have to exercise more and take in fewer calories."

So I went into the spiel about how I lost 30 pounds on WW, gained it back from the stress eating, changing jobs, the whole wedding thing, been trying to lose it, but not going to torture myself over calories anymore, but will be exercising more and she dropped it.

I wish I had asked her why she thought I needed to lose weight. She'd just taken my blood pressure, which is incredibly low. My cholesterol is fine. What health benefits did she think I'd get? And she'd just written me a prescription for more birth control pills. Which can cause weight gain. But I'll just take in less calories and it'll all go away. Sigh.

It didn't upset me--I have pretty thick skin, so this woman thinking I need to eat less is not going to make me beat myself up until I do so. But man, she was so close to earning a fat friendly seal of approval from me. I was thisclose to not grieving over my old GYN.

I showed her--I went back to the office and had my little 100 calorie cupcakes, and then had a reasonably healthy dinner (rice, veg, a little chicken from the salad bar downstairs from the office). I didn't leave her office feeling like I needed a doughnut to help me recover from the experience. That'll teach her to push buttons that could lead to emotional eating.

I mean honestly, people, the woman has written 2 books about women's health. But she just starts talking about eating less calories to a chubby woman in an ill-fitting hospital gown, open in the front, just waiting for the doctor to leave the room so she can grab a wad of kleenex to wipe off all the lube. And she thinks this message is going to be received in an effective way.

And now I know why other woman won't go to the doctor.

Jeebus H, some days I want to smack thin people.

Exercise: Nope
Flossing: Check
Food Guilt: Check

Exercise: Nope
Flossing: Check
Food Guilt: Check

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Phase 2, Days 8-11, Phase 3, Day 1

Blogging daily about flossing is very much not interesting. Neither are my post titles, so I'll be mixing it up with that. 

First some roundups:
Exercise: Check
Flossing: Check

Exercise: Check
Flossing: Check

Exercise: Check
Flossing: Check

Exercise: Nope
Flossing: Check

There was also a lot of going out with friends for drinks and the sort of food one eats while drinking, so I took in way more calories than the exercise I was able to squeeze in burned, but that's just how it goes sometimes.

Except that's not how I'm usually able to think of it. Instead of being relaxed and energized afterwards, or being hungover but feeling it was worth it, I beat myself up for overindulging. I'm too food and weight obsessed. And I can't do it anymore. 

All that beating myself up over what I've eaten is taking up more energy than I can give anymore. I need that energy for other things. Like, say, keeping myself from stress eating. (You can also see that giving myself extra stress over my eating would only lead to more stress eating anyway.)

I also expect that I'll be able to channel that extra energy into tackling my To Do list, working on my writing, etc. 

So I'm starting Phase 3 and I'm starting it Today. Before old habits start up again. I'm calling Phase 3, "Enough with the Food Guilt Already" or "Food Guilt" for short. When I finish eating something indulgent, I want to think, "Damn, that was good," not "Wow, I'm such a piggy."  Calories I take in, but don't really enjoy and appreciate are wasted ones. I'm going to eat healthy, but not track points or calories. And I won't use it as an excuse to overindulge. ("Ooh, since I'm not counting points today, I might as well have a second piece of pie."--Sound familiar?) 

I can have it if I want it. I have plenty of self control, so I'm capable of looking at a cake and not wanting it, so that should work in my favor. I'm not on a plan to gain weight, after all, and I expect I'll manage to lose a little too.

How do I earn a check mark for Phase 3? By not beating myself up over what I've eaten. If I mildly regret indulging in something, that's OK. But lamentations are not. 

Let's see how that goes.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Phase 2, Day 7

Yesterday's Roundup:

Exercise: Nope. There was a reason why that I have completely and totally forgotten. Oh right, yeah. We met up with some friends for eating and drinking. And there may have been some working late so that I'd be able to go to happy hour on Wednesday. Virtuous reasons for not exercising indeed.

Flossing: There was flossing and it was glorious. Or satisfactory. One of those.

Thing # Whatever Number I'm Up to that I Hate About Flossing: When you move on to a new bit of the floss, you end up holding used floss. Ew.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Phase 2, Day 6

Yesterday's Roundup

Exercise: Nope, not really

Flossing: Check. The power of the post-it did indeed compel me.

Thing #3 I hate about flossing: I really can't imagine a more boring thing to talk about or blog about. Oh boy! Can't wait to get to my iMac and tell the blog if I flossed!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Phase 2, Day 4 & 5

Friday's Roundup:

Exercise: Nope, but I think I figured out what I did to my ankle.
Flossing: Check

Saturday's Roundup:
Exercise: Nope
Flossing: Nope--forgot. Clearly I need a post-it in the bathroom. As far as my brain is concerned, all I have to do it take my medicine and remove my contacts and I'm done. Hopefully, the power of the post-it will compel me.

Thing # 2 I hate About Flossing--I can't seem to be able to do it without making my gums bleed. I seem to be getting better at that.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Phase 2, Day 3

Yesterday's Roundup

Exercise: Nope (starting to wonder if I should show my ankle to one of those doctor people even though I totally know it's just a sprain or something)

Flossing: Nope (forgot. But when I woke up this morning, I remembered that I had forgotten by the way my mouth felt and tasted. So that's gotta be progress, I guess.)

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Phase 2, Day 2

Today's Roundup (OK, actually Yesterday's Roundup--I need to start flossing earlier, as in before the last possible moment)
Exercise: Nope (foot still hurts in a worrying manner)
Flossing: Check!

Thing I hate about flossing #1:
I have trouble flossing in the back. I have a small jaw. The main reason I needed braces was because there wasn't enough room for all my teeth. One of my wisdom teeth actually cracked from tooth decay because I hadn't been getting my toothbrush back there (and hadn't realized).

But as I was at it last night, I realized that I shouldn't neglect flossing the teeth I can reach easily just because I always leave out a couple of molars. Unhealthy perfectionist streak. I suspect I'll need to address that in other areas of my life as well.

I never imagined I'd get philosophical insight from removing particles from between my teeth.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Phase 2, Day 1

Today's Roundup

Exercise: Nope
Flossing: Check!

And now you know.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Thwarted, Plus Phase 1 Wrap Up, Phase 2 Launch

My printer died, so I can't print out a new calendar to mark up with little checks. Plus, Phase 2 was going to involve printing as well. Oh, and I hurt my foot (as in, I got out of bed Monday morning and thought, "hey, that hurts." So no exercise for me.

And now we see why I need this project in the first place.

OK, so Phase 1 Wrap Up. I started to exercise quite a bit more often in weeks 3 and 4 than in the first 2 weeks. I went from 2 or 3 days a week to 5. However, 2 days of this involved walking on city streets in regular shoes for a mile or so and that may account for my foot pain. So I'll have to change into sneakers if I'm going to do that again. It's all about the arch support.

I had every intention of posting a photo of my calendar, but since the printer's broken, I can be bothered. No, I don't understand the logic of that, and yet, that is how I feel. Besides, if I touch the camera and it craps out too, it will not be good for my mental condition.

On to Phase 2! I have to work around the lack of printer and I can't let myself go another week without starting a new phase, so flossing it is! It dawned on me last week that I have no dental insurance any more and so maybe I'd better take better care of my teefers.

The Goal: to floss my teeth before bed every night. If it sounds easy to you, then you're just not appreciate the extent of my not caring about flossing. I had some really great dental tape once made by the people who make gore-tex, but I ran out and I haven't seen it anywhere since. Maybe I'll buy some fancy floss to keep myself motivated. But flossing before bed reduces morning breath (so my dentist says) and my morning breath could kill small animals, so I'd really better get on this one.

I'm not going to wrap up day 1 of phase 2 just yet because I want to have a snack and I'm not going to floss until after that. But posting has to happen! Blogging can wait for no floss! So we'll all just have to wait to see if I floss tonight or not. Can you stand the tension?

Friday, April 4, 2008

Phase 1, Day 27

Today's Roundup:
Exercise: Nope

Stay tuned for the final wrap up of Phase 1 and the start of Phase 2. For reals this time!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Phase 1, Day 26

Today's Roundup
Exercise: Check

I actually made it to the gym, even though I was exhausted all day. And now I'm even more exhausted. So much for everything else I was going to do tonight.

To the couch!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Phase 1, Day 25

Today's Roundup:
Exercise: Check!

I walked about 2 miles through the streets of Manhattan to get from work to the book signing I wanted to go to. If I had realized that this would involved going through Herald Square, past Penn Station and through Times Square, I might've taken a bus at least part of the way. That was a hell of a lot of people I had to fight my way through.

Lessons learned: Walking over a mile in shoes that are not sneakers will give you sore feet. Lugging my sneakers in to work and changing when I leave doesn't fill me with joy. Maybe I'll try the ol' wear the sneakers to commute and carry the (lighter) work shoes.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Now, Where was I?

We were without internet access for a few days. It was so traumatic, that I couldn't possibly consider blogging. Besides, we were piggybacked on a neighbor's wireless network, unbeknownst to them, so I wasn't about to do anything nonessential, which includes everything but checking e-mail.

I had planned on doing a wrap up of Phase 1 and starting Phase 2, but internet withdrawal rendered me incapable of such things. So I'm extending Phase 1 for another week. My project. I get to do that. Let me know if that seems too power mad.

Let's do a round-up of the days I didn't blog, shall we? I know we're all on the edge of our seats to see how much I was able to get off of my own seat.

Friday: Nope
Saturday: Check (vigorous cleaning)
Sunday: Nope (I might've given myself exercise credit for all the cleaning we did before people came over, except that I spent far more time on my butt, eating cheese.
Monday: Check (walked to class again)
Tuesday: Check (walked to writing group)

So I got 5 whole check marks last week and I already have 2 for this week. Excellent improvement over the first 2 weeks.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Phase One, Day 19

Today's Roundup
Exercise: Check

Go me. 4 whole check marks in a row! Whoop! Whoop!

Eh, whatever.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Phase 1, Day 18

Today's Roundup
Exercise: Check

Take that! 3 checkmark days in a row. Much more of this getting my act together and I may even get around to wrangling up graphics for the daily roundup. You'd think that someone compulsive enough to start a blog to manage their own self improvement projects would've taken care of that sooner. Just further proof that I really need this project.

Today's exercise was a trip to the gym and 40 whole minutes on the treadmill. Why so long? I was waiting for the latest chapter of Emma by Jane Austen to end. Librivox has really saved my ass with treadmilling. Even listening to music isn't usually enough to end the tedium of walk, walk, walking with no change in scenery. But audiobooks give me just enough stimulation to keep my mind from complaining loudly.

I'm planning on a repeat tomorrow. Go me!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Phase 1, Day 17

Today's Roundup
Exercise: Check

Thanks to good weather I was able to walk to writing group today. Go me!

And tomorrow? I am so getting my butt onto the treadmill. Interesting. It looks like Week 3 is finally the week when I'm actually able to do it. Maybe I need 4 week phases, so I can have a week of keeping it up before adding another thing. Well, I'll make sure that Phase 2 isn't something that could possibly get in the way of exercising. Because 4 weeks of me talking about whether or not I exercised is lame.

I've been avoiding talking too much about exercise issues and body issues and so on because I really just don't want to go there. I feel better when I exercise. I had barely been exercising at all. Therefore, more exercise needed to happen. And still does.

Future phases will include rambles on the tyranny of the To Do list and why the fuck does my purse weigh so much anyway?

Monday, March 24, 2008

Phase 1, Day 16

Today's Roundup
Exercise: Check

Much to my surprise. I was able to walk from work to the class I had this evening. This was somewhat negated by the McDonald's double cheeseburger I had on the way for dinner. I haven't eaten at McDo's for years, but apparently, it was exactly what the hangover gods were demanding. In my defense, I attempted to get a regular cheeseburger from the cafe downstairs from my office, but the grill was closed. However, I have yet to train my metabolism to eject the excess calories when they are justified, so I'll have to indulge less for the rest of the week.

But! Phase One is exercise more. Not burn more calories than I take in, even though that's implied. So no need to go off on a tangent driven by my food issues. I walked to class. And a little extra because I had the time. So it was definitely over a mile. Probably.

With any luck, I'll be able to walk to my writer's group tomorrow. Aw, crap. I just jinxed it.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Phase 1, Days 15

Today's Roundup
Exercise: Nope

Easter dinner with the family. No time for exercise, unless you count little kid wrangling. No? Oh, well, I didn't think so.

I have things going on after work Monday and Tuesday, so I'm not sure how that's going to work out. How do you all out there sneak in/squeeze in a little exercise when your schedule's packed?

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Phase 1, Days 13 & 14

Completely forgot to post last night. I have no idea why--it was a long time ago.

Anyway, no exercising yesterday--Friday after work feels like relaxing time, not gym time. Plus, I spent the whole morning with a headache, so I feel like I deserve a medal for not having a donut just on principle. But no check mark.

Today, we cleaned the apartment like the wind. I shopped and cooked (more time on my feet), so that calls for a check mark.

So, three, count 'em three checkmarks in a week. Truly a Purim miracle.

Day 13 Roundup
Exercise: Nope

Day 14 Roundup
Exercise: Check

Aw, man, only one more week to go. I guess I should start deciding what Phase 2 will be.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Phase 1, Day 12

Today's roundup:
Exercise: Nope

Jinx!!! I jinxed it. I did wake up with my foot hurting. I once stepped wrong while walking down the street and ended up in a soft cast for a week. So I decided to wuss out and call it not pushing it. I even wore an ace bandage for most of the day.
I did spend the evening in front of my pet iMac plowing through my To Do list, but since I'm not on the Do Stuff on the To Do list phase (coming soon to a blog near you), no check mark for me today.

At least I have more vigorous cleaning planned for Saturday. If I can't manage to exercise 3 times in a week with the internets watching, then I just don't know.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Phase 1, Day 11

Today's roundup:
Exercise: Check

2 days in a row! Try not to faint from shock. Yoga class tonight. I even plan on hitting the treadmill tomorrow after work, though I fear the universe will smite me with something to keep it from happening now that I've been so bold as to declare my intentions.

I did hurt my foot an eensy bit tripping over my husband's shoe. While his foot was still in it. He didn't trip me on purpose, and even caught me as I fell, so it's all good. My foot feels OK now, but my clumsiness is such that I wouldn't be surprised if I woke up tomorrow unable to walk without an Ace bandage. I once walked around with torn cartilage in my knee for a year wondering why my bad knee (hurt when I was 12) was acting up so much.

Let's hope this isn't like that.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Phase 1, Day 10

Today's roundup:
Exercise: Check

Though I didn't make it to the gym today, my writing group was cancelled on account of hangovers (none of which were my own), so I came straight home from work and cleaned the fuck out of my kitchen. No, seriously. I was at it for 2 hours. Counters were cleaned, crumbs were vacuumed and stuff was organized. There's a lot of vigorous cleaning to do when you're a slob.

No pictures, because even clean, the counters still look kinda cluttered. That's just how I roll.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Phase 1, Day 9

Today's roundup:
Exercise: Nope

On the bright side, my headache is almost gone now. Any day that includes a medicinal doughnut is unlikely to include much exertion of any kind. What? Sugar glaze does too make headaches feel better.

Now if I could only convince my metabolism to ignore the calories. You know, like not guilty by reason of insanity. Not caloric by reason of my head hurts.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Phase 1, Day 8

Today's roundup:
Exercise: Nope

Woke up with a migraine so bad that even my miraculous new migraine pills couldn't get me up and off the couch today. I'm no longer in agony, either, so I can't really complain.

Nothing else got done today, either, which bothers me more than the lack of exercise. But I did get caught up on the DVR, so it'll be that much longer before it starts threatening to delete stuff. So there is that.

Phase 1, Day 7

Big St. Patrick's Day party at my aunt's house, which took up most of the day between the traveling and eating massive amounts of corned beef and cabbage.

And so, as I had suspected would happen:
Today's roundup:
Exercise: Nope

The weekly roundup--I exercised twice. Off to a smashing start.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Phase 1, Day 6

Today's roundup:
Exercise: Nope

Although really, my commute home involved so many stairs that my legs were exhausted by the time I got home, so that should count for something. But it doesn't, really, so tomorrow's another day, I guess. Which isn't bad. Each day is Pass/Fail and either my final grade isn't cumulative (clean slate each day), or I have nothing to beat at this point (no previous phases to compare to).

Besides, it's Friday night for crying out loud. People shouldn't exercise on Fridays. It's just not natural.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Phase 1, Day 5

Went to a book launch party after work, so no gym. How often does your chiropractor have their first book published? There were several things I wanted to do this evening, but this was the only one that wasn't going to happen again. You don't miss that.

Besides, I had every intention of sneaking in 10 minutes of yoga when I got home. That was destined not to happen as soon as I got a glass of wine at the party. I certainly didn't get drunk, but I was tired already from the daylight savings change and the wine just pushed me over into not going to get off the couch territory.

Remind me not to try to do anything at all for the first week after the Spring Ahead next year. I've been so wiped out that it took me until today to realize that I wasn't just tired from losing an hour of sleep. It's that my body thinks I woke up at 5:30 AM. For a non-morning person, that is 5 kinds of brutal.

Today's roundup:
Exercise: Nope

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Phase 1, Day 4

Made it to yoga class today. Om to ya mutha.

Still sore, but much less achy than before.

Today's roundup:
Exercise: Check

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Phase 1, Day 3

I briefly considered doing a few minutes of yoga when I got home tonight so that I could earn a check mark and loosen up (after yoga last night, I am much with the soreness), but it ain't gonna happen. I had my writer's group tonight after work, so there was no time to go to the gym.

And now I'm just too tired and I've felt like I'm coming down with something all day. So, to the couch!

Today's roundup:
Exercise: Nope

Monday, March 10, 2008

Phase 1, Day 2

Dragged my ass to yoga after work even though (like everyone else feeling the Daylight Savings) all I wanted to do was go home and spend some quality time with my pillow. 

You know why? Because if I skipped yoga, then I'd have to tell the blog. The blog that no one reads yet. But still.

There is something to the whole be accountable thing. I totally would had some chocolate to take the edge off, but I'm also back to keeping track of my eating. (I did the Weight Watchers Core plan and I've been following it, except without keeping track. Which means that I can have snacks without doing math and contemplating the ramifications on what I get to eat later on. Which means that I end up pounding back entirely too many cashews and all that monounsaturated fat still contains a lotta calories. And I'm fed up with my pants being too tight. So I'm not waiting to make the eating thing Phase 2 3 weeks from now. Besides, counting points means that I earn activity points for exercising. Which means I get to eat more. Which is the best motivation for exercise I've been able to come up with. Because that whole I'll feel better afterwards thing doesn't cut it when I'm trying to talk myself into not making me go to the gym.)

So anyway, it was yogatastic. I do feel better and I got a little kick about giving myself a little check mark on my calendar. 

Today's roundup:
Exercise: Check

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Phase 1, Day 1

Hungover thanks to Karaoke party last night. Worth it. Though I wouldn't recommend staying up extra late on the night we Spring Ahead.

Exercise is not going to happen today. Although the several hours I spent on my feet cooking this afternoon certainly mitigate the 3 slices of sausage pizza I sacrificed to the hangover gods, that's not the sort of exercise I meant. 

I'm not exactly getting off to a smashing start, here, but there are worse things than not earning a check mark for the day. 

Phase One--Exercise

I'm starting with something easy. I used to go to the gym 3-4 days a week, so this shouldn't be too hard. I went almost 4 months without making it to the gym for the usual reasons (too busy job searching, then too busy starting a new job, etc., etc.).  

For the past 2 weeks, I've done my time on the treadmill 2 days a week. I feel better when I exercise, so I'm going to be doing more. 

The gym every day--not gonna happen. More exercise than usual daily--feasible. 10 minutes of yoga on the bedroom floor counts. 

Let's see how it goes, shall we?

Saturday, March 8, 2008

The Project

I spend an inordinate amount of time worrying about everything that I'm not doing better. I let the housekeeping slip so I can have more time for my creative pursuits, but then I start to hyperventilate whenever I can't do something because I can't find an uncluttered surface to do it on. If I eat in, that helps me save money and eat healthy, but seeing my friends usually requires eating out. And having friendships is good for my health too.

I'm constantly finding books and articles to help me with one aspect of my life. I could get more organized, but it might require getting less sleep. And I'm not getting enough sleep as it is. There's got to be a way to make it all work.

So I thought of this project. In each phase, I'll tackle something different, adding on to what I've done before. I'll exercise more, eat better, stay on top of my to do list, and find time to relax. It doesn't seem possible, but when I asked my husband if he thought the idea was crazy, he said, "Well, weren't you kind of going to do that anyway?" I take this as proof of my insanity, but if I keep expecting myself to do it all, I might well try and find out whether or not I really can.

So here we are.

The Rules

  1. Each phase lasts 3 weeks. That should be enough time to absorb each new habit. 
  2. I reserve the right to make a phase longer if I need more time, or cut it short if it's just not working out.
  3. I reserve the right to pick something easy, like flossing daily if I need a break. 
  4. I reserve the right to repeat a phase. I imagine that I'll need to repeat Setting Realistic Expectations a couple of times.
  5. You don't get to pick what the phases are. If you think I need to give up carbs, stop swearing, or find Jesus, I don't give a rat's ass. I'm doing this to please me. Not you. That includes you, Mom. 
  6. You do get to give advice on the current phase. I'll need all the help I can get.
  7. I'm not shooting for perfection. Getting it right more days than not is good enough.
  8. No backsliding beyond Day 1. I don't save money by shoplifting now and I'm not about to start. No blogging at work, keep on doing good things for the environment, that sort of thing.
  9. You get to play along. If you want to join in and make some of the changes that I'm making, then come along and let me know in the comments. 
  10. I reserve the right to change the rules at any time.
How am I going to keep track? Well, I'll report on my progress on the blog and I'll also be keeping track on a calendar. If I find the time to figure out how to do the calendar in HTML, great, but I have bigger fish to fry. I've printed out a calendar (on scrap paper, of course). Each Phase will get its own color. I get to make a check mark with a colored pencil if I meet my goal for that day. I may be 36, but I still like getting check marks.