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6 months of creating new habits and a new body!

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Old 11-24-2013, 05:48 PM   #1
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Smile 6 months of creating new habits and a new body!

I think this might be the right section to start a thread that's not about any specific diet nor a specific challenge.

6 months is plenty of time to achieve all kinds of things and 6 months from now is going to be end of May. Theoretically, with 500kcal daily deficit one should be able to lose a bit over 25lbs of fat in that time. That's 100 sticks of butter in US and 25 packets of butter over here. In both places, it's quite a lot and can be achieved with minor changes that accumulate over time. It also supposedly takes 21 days to learn a new habit, so there is plenty of time to learn new habits and reinforce them long enough that by summer your whole life might look different!

Regardless of the goals and whether we do something or not, that six months will come and go, and at least at my age, it comes and goes really fast! And really, every day is built upon the previous day and the everyday choices here and there will accumulate over time to bigger changes. So, who's with me?

My personal goals are to get into the habit of planning and preparing foods before I get into a ravenous state and eat anything that doesn't run away from me fast enough (like potato chips; those are really lethargic and you are what you eat). I also want to be more active because I enjoy it, not out of punishment and I want to learn how to cook specific foods that are healthy and delicious. Finally, I want to go from approximately 32% body fat to 20%.

Regardless of anyone's personal goals, I would hope to achieve some supportive and educating talk about how to reach those goals and how to incorporate new habits into one's life. I'm reading a few books at the moment about those subjects (and about willpower) and will happily share anything I've learned. More importantly, I'd like to share the next six months with others and see how that process will go! So it's about more than just weight loss, but obviously since we're on this site, that is a big part of it.

I personally think that attempting to change your whole life over one night is too much to ask and the overwhelming feeling can lead to lack of motivation and giving up. "There are no unrealistic goals. Only unrealistic timelines." I think that six months is rather realistic for making all kinds of changes in one's life, if you're ready to work on them even a little bit every day.

So please do join me. Pretty please with Stevia on top
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Old 11-24-2013, 06:20 PM   #2
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Ill join if you hold the stevia! (I dont like sugar substitutes, the processing/chemicals affects me ) im HOPEFULLY going to be in vegas for a few days in may and id LOVE to be way lighter by that point.
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Old 11-24-2013, 06:41 PM   #3
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Ill join if you hold the stevia! (I dont like sugar substitutes, the processing/chemicals affects me ) im HOPEFULLY going to be in vegas for a few days in may and id LOVE to be way lighter by that point.
Most excellent! No Stevia for you then, if you in turn promise not to get into too much trouble in Vegas ;-) The lightweight you is going to have one drink and wake up married the next day!
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Old 11-24-2013, 07:29 PM   #4
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Let's go!

I should definitely be able to do my last 13 lbs in six months, maybe more! Bring it on!
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Old 11-24-2013, 07:35 PM   #5
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Greetings to my fellow Finn -- Heippa! And the rest of the gang!

My goal is to be at goal by May. 125-130 pounds, and size 4/6. At that point I have been "OP" for a year and 2 months.

Looking forward to this thread being active and fruitful.
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Old 11-25-2013, 01:54 AM   #6
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Marvellous! :-) And we even have a small Finn mob :-P

I took my measurements this morning and will now put the scale away for a while again. I don't want the extra stress that comes from staring at the numbers and the changes in the body fat percentage will be slow anyway.

Anyway, I thought I'd write a bit about setting goals! I recently listened to couple of audio books by Brian Tracy and he had some interesting things to say about goal setting. One of them was about writing down your goals. There was a study about college students and their goal setting, and without being able to easily refer to the book (as it was in audio), I'll not go into the actual specifics, but... Those who had clear (career) goals in mind, earned much more later on than those who didn't have any clear goals. While that might not be surprising, there was also a third, much smaller group, who had written down their goals. They earned much, much more than the two other groups. So his advice was to write down your goals, every day if possible, in the form as if it had already happened. For example:

"My body fat is at 20% by June 2014"

Actually writing it down (and altering along the way if it feels right) might help to be constantly reminded of where you want to be and you'll automatically work towards that goal. Of course it should be sensible, and will not work like magic. I will not be 10lbs lighter by the end of this week, no matter how many times I write it down :-) I think this might be especially useful for weight loss as so much of it is about unconscious decisions that we make all the time. If it wasn't, we wouldn't be here!

Next stop for me is trying to break down my own goals to smaller goals, and that should be interesting, because I absolutely suck at making goals and creating plans :-) I also think I'll focus on trying to get back to the gym this week and will get into diet specifics later. I know how to do the diet part, but I need to do something about this procrastination part... Tomorrow. Just kidding! Today...
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Old 11-26-2013, 01:23 AM   #7
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Writing down goals in awesome thing. I've currently got some time-based ones in writing myself; I plan on easing back into exercise at the beginning of February and restarting the C25K program again by March 5th. I swear I'd be further along than I am right now, but I sort of got interrupted earlier this year and will be having my first baby in less than a month.

March 5th is a very important, symbolic date for me. Although I'd already lost a lot of weight, I still had a long ways to go. I'd gotten stressed, depressed, and was actually regaining for the first time in years back at the end of 2011. I was then surprised by my first pregnancy, but miscarried in early 2012. After spending some time mourning and thinking, I knew I couldn't let myself keep regaining and watching the health I'd worked so hard to get back slip away. I started making small, manageable changes. And I'm not sure of the reason, but I picked the date March 5th, 2012 as my official reboot, promising myself to keep trying no matter what for at least a year. I worked hard and averaged a one pound per week loss, and exactly one year later in March 2013, I conceived! So it seems only fitting to reboot again in March 2014. Oh, and I also reached my lowest weight ever since junior high!

I'm hoping I can get down under 200 pounds in about six months (which I probably haven't seen since 6th grade or so), but I imagine as a new mother I'll be facing some new challenges. While losing weight last year and throughout the pregnancy this year, I've been tracking my food and doing my best to stay active; I really had to tone the exercise down though due to this being a high-risk pregnancy, so I'm anxious to get moving again once I'm healed up and have more energy. The food tracking has been especially helpful for me, allowing me to explore my emotions, review how I'm doing, look for ways to improve, and plan for success. I have a pretty weekly planner I use as a journal for writing down all my goals as well as do all of my tracking, and it's been an amazing tool for nearly two years now (well, to be fair I'm on my second journal now). Staying positive and keeping realistic goals has been extremely helpful to me, and I'm hoping I can get back to that average loss of one pound per week.

Wonderful thread idea! Good luck to everyone!
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Last edited by Elladorine : 11-26-2013 at 01:25 AM.
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Old 11-26-2013, 02:11 AM   #8
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Elladorine, wow!

So you're actually a living proof of how writing down goals and being persistent with making small changes can change everything! Congratulations! I honestly do get inspired by people who've been persistent.

You have no idea how many years I wasted setting up unrealistic goals (or unrealistic timelines, rather) and going from one extreme to another. I could've just taken baby steps from year 1 and this problem would've been solved ages ago! :-)

Now I have this post-it note above my computer that says "humility, compassion, perseverance". It's there to remind me of the qualities I want to have which help me live a life that's embracing reality rather than rejecting it and trying to replace it with my own version of it.

I'm sure the baby will change a lot of things even in unexpected ways, but you don't seem like someone who would be too rigid, which means that you'll probably accomplish your goals :-) Adaptability is just as important as determination.

So interested to see how things go! :-)
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Old 11-26-2013, 06:52 AM   #9
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For everybody who needs some app for goal writing - which is really awesome to visualise your progress on different things, download Everest. It is available for iphone, but might also be an android version.

Goals are the key. Mine is to be my "old" weight by summer which is 80kg (176lbs) (I am 5 11). And then really get it down to 155lbs for good in later months. I am currently at 223lbs. I think I can do it in that timespan. Time flies super fast!
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Old 11-26-2013, 08:16 AM   #10
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I will come back and edit this post weekly on my weigh in day. My starting weight is 154.6


11/29 ~ 155
12/06 ~ 158.2
12/13 ~ 160.4!
12/20 ~ 155.4
12/27 ~ 154.8
01/03 ~ 149.4
01/10 ~ 146.4
01/17 ~ 147.4
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142.0 ~ 01/28/14
132.0 ~
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Last edited by Sum38 : 01-17-2014 at 05:36 AM.
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Old 11-26-2013, 10:34 AM   #11
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Hey all, I'm going to join you! To make a long story short, I'm a long time member of this site, usually always lurking but only get involved in the threads when my weight starts to get out of control. I think this thread is for me as I don't have a specific goal, just to get my weight back in check. I've gained 10 lbs over the last 4 months and I feel pretty uncomfortable. I want to lose them again and hopefully a few more since I was pretty close to my goal, but I refuse to move my ticker back up to the weight I'm currently at. it's purely psychological lol... I would also like to 'learn' how to like running.

Sparkles- what book are you reading on willpower?
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Old 11-26-2013, 10:44 AM   #12
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Apps! Of course. Why didn't I think that there would be apps for habits!

I only today realized that there's the concept of "habit streaks". I'm really headstrong and determined, once I get on a specific track, but without any tracks and for the first few days...that headstrong part of me is super lazy! So if I can create reasonable habits that are scheduled (I'm not going to go to the gym every day, but I should go at least twice per week) and keep at it for the first 2-3 weeks, then perfect!

Unfortunately that Everest app that looked very pretty is unavailable in the Finnish iTunes store. Meh. Then I decided that I'll use my Android phone instead and am now looking at one less pretty app, but still with similar functionality. Great idea! Hvala!

@Sum38: That's a good idea! I think I should probably also have some updates over the goals I have. I'm unsure yet whether I'll weigh myself every week or not. What sort of diet and/or exercise regime do you use? Onnea matkaan :-)
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Old 11-26-2013, 10:55 AM   #13
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Hello Toni Maroni II! :-)

The book is called "The Willpower Instinct" by Kelly McGonical, Ph.D. I've only read the first chapter or so, but the book is based on her course on willpower, so it's even recommended to be read over the course of several weeks. Thus far I've liked it very much and it's already given me a lot to think, but obviously I can't really say how useful it will be.

I was just thinking, as I read Jelena talk about the book "Brain Over Binge", that there seems to be a similar idea behind those two. Mainly that there are (roughly) two parts in our brains: the "primal" one and the "higher consciousness" one. Both are needed and well...they just are what we have, so we have to live with them. I also see similarities to another book with the concept about the "outer child" (need for instant gratification, temper tantrums, etc.), and that concept helped me a lot on my journey from behaving in self-destructive ways (too much eating and drinking and bad relationships). So I see a pattern here...

There's no need to feel shame for wanting instant gratification, but it's good to notice when that need arises. Then you can have an internal dialogue between the "child"/"primal part" and the "adult"/"higher consciousness" part. I'm personally now at a place where I'm able to stop bad behavior patterns by taking the stance of a grown-up and telling myself that I don't need to eat or drink everything. After a while, those urges have died down and now only arise occasionally. Now I just hope that the willpower book might help with starting healthy ones :-)

By the way, I also started another book about learning, which seems interesting, but can't really say for sure yet. I'll be sure to let you know if it's any good. It's called "The Practicing Mind" by Thomas M. Sterner. Yes. I'm addicted to self-help books :-)

Last edited by SparklyBunny : 11-26-2013 at 10:57 AM.
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Old 11-26-2013, 06:47 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SparklyBunny View Post
Most excellent! No Stevia for you then, if you in turn promise not to get into too much trouble in Vegas ;-) The lightweight you is going to have one drink and wake up married the next day!
I dont think my boyfriend would take too kindly to me bringing a husband home

Welcome everyone else!!

Goals- I love them but I can't/ won't write them down because my family are nosyboddies when they come over :/
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Please excuse my typos and/or grammatical errors; I'm usually typing on my tablet

Goal 1: Get back to lowest weight

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Last edited by SMSDREAMER2007 : 11-26-2013 at 06:56 PM.
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Old 11-27-2013, 02:30 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SMSDREAMER2007 View Post
I dont think my boyfriend would take too kindly to me bringing a husband home

Welcome everyone else!!

Goals- I love them but I can't/ won't write them down because my family are nosyboddies when they come over :/
Well, that would indeed be pretty much the definition of getting into too much trouble :-P

Can you write them down online? Well...here...if you wish to share, but there are also other free (and paid) online journaling services that would be for your eyes only. So unless your family is also a group of hackers, it would be private!

I'm personally now super excited about this mobile app for habit streaks thing :-) I just need to break down my goals into realistic habits. Looks like this first week is going to be me trying to get my ducks in a row. They keep waddling to all directions!
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