Wednesday, January 25, 2012

My Newest Quest: 100 Day Challenge

It's almost the end of January.  I'm not one to make New Years resolutions.  I do look to set goals for the up coming year.  Is there a difference?  I think so.  Most New Years resolutions go something like this;

"I resolve to go to the gym x days a week."

"I resolve to lose x number of pounds by December 31st."

"I resolve to stop doing __________. (pick your own vice)"

These are admirable things to aim for, but as soon one doesn't go to the gym x times a week, doesn't lose weight at the rate wanted, or starts doing _____ again she feels like a failure.  That usually leads to beating up on one's self and just throwing in the towel.

I have two very concrete goals for myself in terms of my sporting life.

1. Get my second degree Black Belt.
2. Do a triathlon again. (sprint or Olympic)

All of this being said, I've decided to accept John "The Penguin" Bingham's 100 day challenge.  The basic premise is this; "You can be a part of it. The rules are simple. Choose to move, intentionally, for 30 minutes every day for the first 100 days of 2012. It doesn’t matter what you do, as long as you do it ON PURPOSE."

Why do I need to do this? After all I've trained for triathlons, marathons, bike races, centuries, Tae Kwon Do, etc.  Don't I already do enough? Yes and no.  I can do plenty when I have people to ride with and Tae Kwon Do classes to attend.  It's those days when it's too cold to ride outdoors, or I can't make it to Tae Kwon Do.  Can I get myself out the door to take a walk or a run in the cold?  If it's too miserable outside can I get myself to do a little strength training, Tae Kwon Do practice, or *gasp* set up the wind trainer and ride indoors?

I admit it. I am lazy and I hate doing things by myself.  It's hard for me to drag my lazy butt out the door to go run, bike or walk by myself.  I want someone to talk to while I'm doing these things.  Sometimes I think I just workout for the social aspect of it.  It's probably a carryover from my youth where sports were my in with the cool kids.  Would I be so devoted to exercise if I never could do it with anyone?  I'm not so sure.  There were  many times where I couldn't bike because I was injured.  Instead of finding an alternative, I would just eat my way through my pity party.  The idea of taking a walk by myself to keep some level of fitness was not on my radar.

I know that exercise is important both physically and emotionally.  As someone who is closer to 60 then 50 I recognize the need to keep moving.  Last year a friend had recommended reading "Younger Next Year" There's woman specific version of the book.  It's an interesting book.  Basically the authors are saying exercise 6 days a week to help turn back the clock.  I'm sure not everyone agrees with their advice, but I think the overall premise is sound.  For me the 100 Day Challenge is to encourage me to keep moving even when I have no one to keep me company.  Though in some ways I do have company.  There's a Facebook page where everyone is sharing what they're doing each day.  Also I have friends who are also doing it.

My original intent was to write this post on January 1st.  Then share  how I'm doing with the challenge. Okay I'm 25 days late.  Being the procrastinator I am, that should be no surprise.  Better late, then never.  Obviously since I went to the trouble to write this post, I'm still on track.  Tae Kwon Do classes, Gimbels and unemployment rides have filled up many of these January days so far.  However I managed to get my 30 minutes in despite traveling for a chess tournament and dealing with very cold weather. 

Day 26 awaits!!

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