I love the holidays. Thanksgiving and Christmas will always bring to mind some of my most treasured memories with family and friends.
Most families have traditions, and I have spoken about our traditions many times. It is a story I love to share. My mom’s side of the family all gather at my Grandma’s house in Montezuma. Both occasions fill her house with love, laughter and good food.
This year, the food portion of the tradition will be more of a temptation. With a wedding just a few months away and the desire to look good in my dress, I am in full wedding-diet mode. I made a commitment two years ago to eat healthier and exercise more after falling off the rails right after college. I got back on track the past couple years, and it felt good.
However, the past year has seen a plateau of sorts in my progress. I had achieved my initial goal but ever since, I have only ever been able to maintain and not move toward a new goal.
Part of that has to do with time. My life took a happy turn last year when I met my fiancé, Tim. I was able to keep to my workout routine in the early days of our relationship, but as we became more important in each other’s lives, my free time to complete my workouts got smaller and smaller.
My five to seven days a week of sometimes 60 to 90 minute walks were getting shrunk to two to three days a week and 30 to 45 minutes, depending on the day. Tim did all he could to help. He encouraged me when I needed it and has joined me on my walks. However in planning for our future, there always seemed to be something I have to accomplish in the evenings that took away from my walking time.
I tried to workout on my lunch breaks, but that was a difficult thing to accomplish as well. I only have so much time away from the office, and I like to use that time to complete tasks that need to be accomplished during business hours. I was still only finding time two to three times a week and only 30 minutes tops.
With the holidays looming and the allure of tasty food in the future, I knew I would have to take a more active role in reaching my goals. I had come to the conclusion if my evening walks were no longer an option every day and the lunchtime walks were insufficient, I would have to do something I’d never dreamed of doing — get up early in the morning and workout. The only time I’ve worked out early in the morning is when it was a required practice for high school or college athletics. I have flirted with the idea in the past. I even set my alarm a few times, only to talk myself out of getting out of bed and reset the alarm.
However, Tim’s work schedule has me waking up at 4 a.m. every day now, so I’ve decided to use that to my advantage. I have been waking up with him and helping him get ready by packing his lunch (I know it’s corny, but I like to do it). I also still walk with him out to his car to tell him goodbye before he drives away.
However, instead of going back to bed as I have been, I now am dressed for a workout and head straight for the treadmill instead. With the exception of Thanksgiving week, I haven’t missed a day in almost two months. It’s actually nice to have it done first thing in the morning and not have to worry about if something unexpected comes up in the evenings. Perhaps with all of this early rising I can force myself to be a morning person; then again, maybe not.
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