It’s July and we are waaay past the middle of the year now. 2017 has been a pretty good year for me so far. I got to take the trip of a lifetime to Dubai, I got admitted to McGill University for my M.Sc. and I surpassed 500 followers on this blog by a long shot. I am definitely looking forward to what the rest of this year will bring offline and online!
I think almost everyone has some sort health goal that they want to achieve. Be it removing negativity, exercising more, eating healthier or meditating more. There are so many ways you can decide to improve your health and well-being.
In the beginning of the year, I had two health resolutions that I vowed to follow come new year. These were exercising regularly and losing weight. Here is how I achieved those goals!
I wanted to establish a regular exercise regimen because I was completely sedentary. I had exercised on and off for months but it was erratic and I would often stop for extended periods of time. I had begun to take my health more seriously and I realised that my inactivity was something that had to change. I decided that I would find an exercise I don’t hate doing and start doing that consistently for the next few months
Was I successful?
I have gone from zero exercise a week to 3 times a week. I now do a variety of strength training and cardio exercise through the course of a week. I started very small. Exercising only once a week and doing low-impact exercises. Once I felt comfortable I slowly increased the frequency and intensity of my exercises to where I am today.
I am by no means a fitness expert. I still look like a headless chicken when I exercise and some days I really, really don’t want to do it but I have noticed so much improvements since I started. My arms and bum look more defined, my resting heart rate has reduced and I can now do a couple of push ups (knee assisted). I was that girl who couldn’t muster up even one assisted push up so this was a very big deal for me!
What exercises did I do?
I used Fitness Blender videos on YouTube. Fitness Blender was founded by a couple called Dan and Kelli who make free exercise videos for all levels and ages. They have over 500 videos on their channel so there is always something for you.
The exercise intensity ranges from 1-5. I started initially at a level 1 and 2 but I am currently doing level 2 to 4. Level 5 is pretty extreme for me so I don’t see myself doing that anytime soon.
My second goal was to lose weight. Which is the probably most basic goal ever lol. I have been overweight for the majority of my life. It’s not the most noticeable thing in the world because I carry my weight pretty well and I have never had any health issues. (Seriously, the last time I was sick was in elementary school). However, my weight had been a source of a most of my self-esteem issues when I was a teenager! As I got older, I became more at peace with my body and began to like it. But as I became more health conscious, I decided to reach a normal weight because I wanted to be healthier after it finally sunk in my head that I was increasing my risk of developing chronic diseases if I do not lose weight!
I was about 10 kg or 20 pounds overweight. So I had a lot of weight to lose before I reached the upper limit of a healthy weight.
Was I successful?
I have lost 11 pounds or 5 kg so far! I am now 10 pounds away from a normal BMI and this is a very peculiar experience for me. I have lost weight by counting my calories and incorporating healthier/filling meals into my diet. The calorie counting app I use is myFitnessPal and it has a large database of food so it is easy to check any food I eat and track it. I weigh every single thing I eat (including condiments) using a scale and weigh myself daily to get a weekly average of my weight. My weight fluctuates a lot daily so it is important to me to get an average so I do not get hung up on a single number I see on the scale!
The biggest difficulty I’ve experienced is adapting to a reduced calorie diet since I was used to eating 2000+ daily. Going from 1800-2000 calories a day to 1300-1500 did not go well for a few weeks. I realised that I had to get creative with the type of food I eat if I was going to survive.
I have incorporated complex carbohydrates like sweet potatoes and oatmeal, increased my vegetable intake and incorporated better fats like peanut butter and cashews. Nearly don’t eat enough protein so that is something I need to work on. Although my diet is not perfect, it is improving and that is all I am aiming for right now. Perfect is the enemy of good!
However, I am currently struggling because my mother keeps buying snacks in the house. Someone send help. Please. Lol
Weight loss communities have also kept me motivated when I felt myself slipping. The r/loseit community of Reddit has helped tremendously with this. I’m an avid Redditor and lurker so finding this community was amazing. I can not begin to explain how motivating the community has been to me. They are an amazing bunch of people!
Thanks for reading this post! I hope some of the tips I have shared may help you with kickstarting your helath goals. I am happy I have acheieved some of my goals this year. I hope I can continue losing weight and getting healthier for the remainder of the year. It hasn’t been always the easiest thing to stop bad habits, but it is well worth it!
What are your health goals?