>Post-Christmas, lighten up

>What a great weekend it’s been for parties!  And now, finally, we come to the quiet week between Christmas and the New Year.  Time to reflect on the year that is ending, and decide on our goals for the new year.  I read a great quote recently – that of course I can’t find now – about the need to reflect on our lives periodically.  It keeps us honest, keeps us focused, and keeps us humble.

Did you achieve the goals in 2010 that you set for yourself a year ago?  I hit some of mine, but missed some others.  I had fitness goals and weight-loss goals, financial goals, and goals around projects to be done.  This blog is really about fitness, but can these threads be kept separate?  Financial issues create stress, which tends to show up as weight gain.  Projects are great, but can keep you too busy to do your workouts, or to cook healthy foods and eat well. 

Reflecting back on my last year, I see that even where I hit the goal, sometimes I missed it.  Was my goal to run a marathon really about the 26.2 miles, or was it about being as fit as I could be?  Was reaching and maintaining a certain weight really about that number, or about making sure I was eating more healthy foods and drinking plenty of water? 

In the process of training for and running my marathon, I developed a condition in my left foot that kept me from running for the next few months.  While not running, I gained several pounds – because my training diet provided too many calories for my non-training body.  Some of the calories I could enjoy when running 25 or 30 miles a week were not very healthy calories, by the way.

My goals for this year will be more about who I want to be as a person and less about what I want to accomplish in separate areas of my life.  I’m seeking balance this year.  Better nutrition, more balanced workouts, less stress.  I will trust the balance to let my weight settle back to where it belongs without shooting for an arbitrary number. 

I hope you will also lighten up on yourself.  Go after the things that really matter.  If you have relationships that need mending, start working on them.  If the thing that keeps you stressed is financial, get all your info together and start working on a plan – and get help if you need it.  Too much to do and not enough hours in the day?  Say ‘no’ to a few requests, pay the neighbor’s son to cut the grass/shovel the snow/rake the leaves, relax a standard or two that was someone else’s idea anyway, get your honey to walk the dog some days.  If a full marathon is just too taxing on your body and on your time, train for a half-marathon or 10K instead.  Be kind to yourself in 2011.  More to follow –

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