Winter Solstice has come and gone. It is a beautiful day of the year in the interior of Alaska, the last day where we lose daylight, and we gradually start to gain. It does not mean that we are magically getting warmer; strangely, our weather gets colder; however, the promise of sun, growth, and life is on the horizon.
At this point in the year, I begin to think about my challenges for the new year, my desired changes, and my resolve to become a better me. I was smart and started my gym membership back in November so that my face was a familiar presence in Planet Fitness before the onset of ‘getting skinny and healthy’ resolvers flood the treadmills and weight machines. I have made sure to make eye contact with every member, smile, and give the greeting of the day to ensure my place in the hierarchy of belonging.
I have watched self-help videos and listened to ‘better you, better world’ recordings. I have programmed my watch to track my oxygen levels, number of steps, active calories, resting calories, number of hours of sleep, and now I have a button I push every time I drink a glass of water.
It stresses me out! I have to burn 750 active calories a day to lose the recommended 1-2 pounds a week- I have gained 10 in the last month. I need to get 10,000 steps a day to keep up with the Kardashians- I work from home, and my coffee pot is only 13 steps from my office. I need to drink eight glasses of water a day- I average 4 cups, and that is because I need something to wash down the anti-depressants, stop smoking pills, 4 Advils, and my daily vitamin/ fish oil combination.
I had signed up for the Run-The-Year program- 2021 miles in 365 days. That is an average of 5.53 miles a day, which seemed reasonable. However, I am ending the year at almost 1600- if I push it until the 31st. That appears to be an accomplishment, right? However, math would disagree with you- that is only an average of 4.10 miles a day- a mile under the recommended mileage to ‘maintain’ weight. I don’t want to maintain! I want to lose.
My answer to that problem? I paid the $75.00 for the early bird discount to try again next year. I am already mapping out how to make January my b**ch because the Sweet Baby Jesus already knows I will be behind schedule by April.
That is not the point of this blog. My point is that I will post to the world all of my hopes and dreams for the upcoming yearly disappointment for the third year in a row.
You would think that this is not a very productive way to handle my life, right? I disagree with you. I have done the standard ”set the bar to an achievable level and once you hit it- aim it higher.” The problem with that reasoning is that I am competitive by nature. I will work my ass off to make that first hurdle, and once I am standing at the finish line- I am tired. I don’t want to rethink my goals. I don’t want to increase the numbers. I don’t want to continue to decrease the calories. I made it- you can’t make me do it again! I didn’t enjoy it the first time.
So, therefore- I am setting my bar HIGH. Who’s with me? Why can’t the goals be lofty in some aspects of our life? Now, I am sure that there are no wealthy relatives out there who will suddenly remember the frumpy middle-aged women who lives in the middle of no-where-Alaska and magically leave me $316,987.63 (the exact total of all my debt to include two cars and a house). If that happens- I am selling the home and moving somewhere warm with a chef and an at-home gym with a personal trainer.
With that path not on the horizon- I would like to run/walk 100 miles a month on top of my standard track of 104 steps a day from my desk to my coffee pot. That is 1,200 intentional miles in 2022. All the rest will be a bonus.
I will write one blog a week. I will not limit myself to just historical blogs- while they are fun, they tend to take a lot of time and effort. Sometimes I just want to complain about the injustice of finally having adult children- and this blasted thing called menopause starting. What the hell, Sweet Baby Jesus? Talk about hitting a woman when she is down.
I will actually complete all the work that I put in my daily calendar on the day I said I would do it. I can make this a thing- because I make my schedule. I am not limited to 9-5 pm office hours, where you are dealing with multiple personalities in a single building, all fighting for a good spot at the lunch table. Before visiting my three co-workers and myself, my boss has to consider the weather, airline flights, hotel availability, and rental car shortages as an added bonus.
This year- I will plan travel accordingly and not schedule week-long visits across the vastness of Alaska during significant holidays, anniversaries, birthdays, or major life events.
I will plan one trip that is actually relaxing and doesn’t require a fishing pole, boat, gun, 4-wheeler, sleeping bag, bear spray, and three days worth of emergency gear.
I will not feel guilty for going to bed at 8 pm to read for an hour (or two). I don’t know why I feel like I have to sit on the couch flipping through the Top 10 of Netflix favorites until the alarm on my watch says that I am allowed to go to bed. So, from this point forward- if I want to reread the Outlander series or the newest installment of the six wives of King Henry the 8th from the comfort of my bed at 8:02 pm- then I will go without guilt.
I will eat more vegetables and fruits. Scratch that- I will buy the instant drink mixes that have all the daily vegetable and fruit nutrients already included- and I will drink one a day on top of my four glasses of water.
I will learn when to pick my vegetables that I spent $375.00 planting in the name of “saving money”- and not let them rot on the vines because I think they ‘look pretty.’
I will finish the trim on the house that I started TWO years ago when I first retired from the Army and was bored one day.
This is my year! I feel it in my bones. Or it might be the pain from standing at the new elevating desk that I bought myself, so I feel less like a fat-ass. I found that when you have an elevating desk, you are more likely to complete your work promptly because you want to sit down! Browsing through Facebook and the News is not as fun when you have to suck your tummy in so you don’t hit the desk and make the screens shake.
Who’s with me for this early News Year’s challenge? Let’s check back in together in February to see if we are still on track or if we should all meet up for coffee and a doughnut.