Tag Archives: motivation

Adventures in Backsliding

6 Nov

Well, it’s been a few weeks since I’ve posted, my Jillian Michaels and running-infused workout plan has deteriorated into frequent light walking and lifting (cereal boxes), and as I write this, I’m stuffing my face with fifteen American dollars worth of beef fried rice. There is also an egg roll. And some Scotch, because I like to marry my trash with class.

In short, this:

Image

I ran a 10K about a month ago and in the time that’s passed it appears I’ve become a bit of a loser. Perhaps loser is a strong term. I can be hard on myself when I’m shame-slamming takeout.

This happens. I’m trying to find a way to get it to stop, but it is a pattern I can’t deny. Sometimes I like to project my own personal trends onto the general human population, and I think that’s actually kind of a fair thing to do because I do represent a small percentage of the human population – the people who avoid laundering underwear until they’ve exhausted their emergency underwear and swimsuit bottoms – the people who find it difficult to stay in little boxes in big towers, jabbering about minutia that determines whether an enormous corporation gives money to another enormous corporation – the people who sometimes want to look at their student loan debt and then look at their empty cupboards and make the former feel better by ordering beef fried rice so that they can immediately alleviate at least one of their issues at hand. Deliciously. While simultaneously rocking a huge hole in the crotch of their jeans.

So that’s me. I’m America. A fraction of America, anyway, and I’m a pretty serious backslider.

I frequently, on occasion, find myself in quite a schlump after quite a bit of gained ground. It’s a bummer. One likes to think that one has learned a lesson and is forever freed from it, but the fact of the matter is that after I go crazy for months at a time trying to conquer everything at hand, I will reward myself the best way I know how: sitting on my couch in unclean clothes and eating food that probably isn’t what it was marketed to me as. And then I will feel so ashamed by this that I will continue to self-soothe in a similar regressive pattern until I rebel against myself and go back into months on conquistador setting.  

It’s frustrating. Mostly because I spit my brains into a public forum where it appears the subjects are cats, food, discomfort in a variety of social situations, gaining ground, and losing ground. After a while of writing about these things, you start to notice yourself.

But it’s okay. I’ve got moxie. And I’m still a young whippersnapper but I’ve been around long enough to realize that there are two  Jackies on the spectrum of Jackiedom – the one that’s a pile of cheesy poof eating, unshowered slop that plays Warcraft all day and has literally no human interaction, and the one that’s in magazines and giving speeches and leading a very happy group of folks in doing whatever they all happily want to do, and that every day is a choice to continue the struggle against the former and to get closer to the latter. If I ever get to the latter and am asked how I got there by young hopefuls, I hope I have the courage to admit that it was a series of backsliding and pounding theater-style boxes of Milk Duds.

 I did achieve some things, though, in my time away from general live achievements. For example, while I was lounging in my pajamas using my sickness as an excuse to drink Scotch and split-screen watch Netflix and browse useless Internet musings, I learned that Chinese takeout containers are designed to conveniently unfold into a sort of semi-normal plate, and that has really served me well in the 30 minutes. So that’s nice. Payoff is nice.

I guess it’s that time again. That time where I look at every single thing in my life and scrutinize it relentlessly until I’m so disgusted that I spit shine my entire house, go for a 3 mile run, register for a race, organize my to-do list in terms of 1-week, 3-month, and 1-year goals, and thoroughly groom my cats for good measure.

I suppose that as long as I backslide only a little less than the amount of ground that I cover in my motivated periods, I’ll always be moving forward. So there’s that. I’m on the move. I’m getting things done, one overhauling/backsliding segment at a time.

Resolution reevaluation time is approaching quickly, however, so I really have to get my sloth gremlins at bay. I’m supposed to be in the best shape of my life by the end of December and I was doing pretty well there until I convinced myself that 20 minutes of light walking per day still met my exercise quota. Which, technically, it does – but light walking isn’t going to burn off this Chinese. Or yesterday’s. Or last week’s. My vagina doctor said so.

That, and I told myself I’d travel outside the country this year for a resolution. Last year I got a passport, and this year I’m supposed to use it. So far, the closest I’ve gotten to international travel is ordering contacts from the United Kingdom.

Time to get on the ball. And since I’m pretty broke, I guess that means I’m going to have to just make it work. Looks like I’m hopping a Megabus to Canada.

Conquistador setting, commence. 

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You’re Gonna Miss the Train

3 Apr
This is the awesome train. It's leaving soon.

This is the awesome train. It’s leaving soon.

I’m sure that you thought since we’ve passed April 1, I’m going to leave you alone about the whole Gauntlet thing.

But I’m not.

This is my last chance to convince you that in 30 days you could be better at something you suck at, proud of your progress, and filled with hope for a future full of sunshine and unicorns.

You know this. You’ve heard this. And there’s something already on your mind that you might try but you’ve filled your head with excuses, tried to talk yourself out of it, and generally been a big, sucky baby. Haven’t you? You big, sucky baby.

I was a big sucky baby once. Actually, I still am. It’s why every once in a while I still get out for a good old fashioned Lollipop Tuesday. In fact, I have something incredibly embarrassing and pee-inducing coming up this week.  And then after that I have to run a 5K. And then after that I have to run a 10K.

These things are not easy for me. They’re not easy for lots of people. Everyone is working, not getting enough sleep, needs more time to relax, and all those other things that get in the way of taking care of your own needs and desires. Let me assure you that even though I’m in the midst of a fitness-related 365, every day is a challenge. The good news is that all you have to do is 30. And even though the intrinsic rewards should be plenty to make you feel like it was worth your time, I’m throwing in the chance to win a $100 Visa Gift Card just for participating. 

Today’s shout out for joining The Gauntlet goes to Georgia’s Bath Products, who has decided to spend a little bit of time every day for 30 days doing something to improve her small business. That’s pretty fantastic. You can follow her journey here. Or you can just drop by and tell her how awesome she is.

In addition to Georgia, I’ve had people contact me to share stories of their challenges and the ways they’re going to get involved. They include:

  • Reading every single day to help conquer a pile of books that have accumulated on the wish list but have never gotten lovin’
  • Writing of all shapes and sizes – novels, paragraphs, blogs, poems… Did you know April is National Poem Writing Month, also known as NaPoWriMo? How perfectly aligned this all is. 
  • Fitness, fitness, fitness. This comes in a variety of forms – yoga, stress relieving activities, doses of sunshine – people everywhere are using The Gauntlet as a good excuse to take care of themselves and see what sticks after one month.
  • Job hunting.  What a great idea, right? If you’re unhappy with your current money-making situation, why not do one thing every day to better it? People are vowing to browse job boards every day, apply for jobs and internships, and work on projects that will better their positions in the workplace.

So what’s the thing nagging you? Is it a house that needs spring cleaning? Is it a project that’s sat in the corner of your room forever? Is it something you’ve been all-talk and no-walk about for an embarrassingly long time?

The Gauntlet was set up so that you could easily start April 1st and end April 30th, with over a week to spare to contact me to tell me you completed it. But you can start any time. And you can start up until April 9th and still be on board for the $100 Visa gift card and a host of other folks supporting your endeavor out there in the blogosphere.

So comment below or click that link on the top of the page or on the right sidebar that lead to the rules and deadlines for The Gauntlet. Drop a line about what you’re going to commit to, or find your favorite form of social media and tell me there. Use #TheGauntlet for me to find you on the Twitter Machine.

This is my last push for The Gauntlet – next week I won’t be trying to convince you of anything. I’ll be talking about my cats or something. And hopefully you’ll be 1/4 of the way toward being infinitely more awesome.

By the way, once upon a time I was a big fat whiny baby with a lot of excuses who ate a lot of pizza and didn’t get any physical activity aside from walking from my front door to my car. And then I logged into Sparkpeople yesterday and was greeted by this:

sparkpeople update

 

You know, just saying. Progress can only happen if you start. 

Peace out, kids. I hope to hear from you. And thanks for all your cheerleading thus far. 

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