Mantra Monday: New Month, New Challenges

The Times, They are a’ Changin’

I know. I invoke Bob Dylan a lot. The man’s a genius. What can I say? Anyway, there are a lot of things changing for me over the next few weeks. New opportunities can be really exciting, but they can also be terrifying. I’m somewhere in the middle at the moment.

Nevertheless, I remind myself that I have personal power regardless of the tumultuous seas around me. I still have the power to improve myself every day. I have the power to forgive myself for the mistakes I make, and I have the power to try again.

It’s been a very anxious day for me today. Still, I’m gonna hit the gym in an hour and do what I’ve committed to do. I’ll run two and a half miles and I’ll lift some weights. Endorphins will rush through my bloodstream and make me feel better. Keeping that commitment reminds me that I have power, even when the world and my circumstances tell me I’m completely powerless.

New Commitments

I’ve been to the gym three times a week without fail since the beginning of April. It’s been really good, but I’ve started to plateau a bit, and I think I’m ready to start adding some new commitments.

Active Every Day

For this month, I’m committing to being active every day. What does that mean? Well, rather than only going to the gym on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, then doing nothing physical on the other days, I’m going to start doing other activities on my “rest” days.

I already started a couple of weeks ago doing it here and there. Throw in a bike ride, or some yoga, and it’s good. Now I’m going to make sure that I’m doing at least a half hour of physical activity each day. Gym days won’t change much. I might increase my speed on the run a bit. I might add more weight or increase my reps, but the formula will stay the same: Run, push exercise, pull exercise, leg exercise, ab exercise.

The other days will be yoga days at a bare minimum. So far I’ve done a few half-hour sessions, and those are great. Often, I’ll do yoga and take a bike ride, but that won’t be every day. I also have a bag to hit for boxing workouts at home on “off” days.

Eating Better/Drinking Less

It’s not exactly a secret that my main approach to nutrition has been to just eat less. That’s also not exactly great advice when it comes to losing weight. Don’t get me wrong, it is good advice, and it works, but it’s incomplete. If I want I can go and order an Ultimate Cheeseburger meal from Jack in the Box and still be under my calorie goal for the day. But only just. And if I did that every day, I may lose some weight at first, but my body wouldn’t be healthy.

For now, I’m going to consciously choose the healthiest palatable option when it comes time to eat, and I’m going to stop drinking so damned many IPAs. They’re tasty, but the reality is beer is just empty carbs, so I’ve gotta cut back.

Making Commitments Stick

If you’re ready to make some new commitments in your life, but you don’t trust yourself to keep them, there are some things you can do that will help. For one thing, tell your friends and family. Tell everyone. Write a blog about it. Write it in the comments on this blog. This will help keep you accountable. Another thing you can do is set time-sensitive goals and reward yourself for meeting them. For example, if I complete my commitments this month, I will buy myself something relatively inexpensive that will help me in the next stage of my journey. Trust me. It really does work.

Here’s to a great week throughout the realm, Brandonians. See you tomorrow for Tuesday Tune-Up.

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