|Me and my sparkly cheer sign before the 2011 Princess Half Marathon|
I've been down this road before-back in late 2008 I got really serious and got back on the Sparkpeople website that I had joined about a year prior (and just never really used) and really focused on losing weight. Over the next year and few months between diet, exercise and then training for my first half marathon-the 2010 Disney Half Marathon-I wound up losing 45 pounds. After that first race and several follow-up half marathons, I started to slack off a bit. And then a bit more...and wound up almost all the way back where I started. But when I was losing the weight, the things I needed to keep reminding myself of were to drink my water and do my strength training--two things I was very bad at keeping up. And then once I kind of burned myself out after so many races in a short time period, I took a long (too long) break, after which it was really hard to get motivated again.
So I added pictures of water (my Brita pitcher and some bottled water that I just happened to have left over from my Sanibel trip) and some of my strength and flexibility training accessories (yoga mat, resistance bands, hand weights) to remind myself of their importance. It's really hard for me to drink a lot of water. Not just because I find the taste boring and plain-that's what Mio and Crystal Light are for-but also because I'm just not that thirsty. My body seems to be able to stay hydrated on less water than the "recommended" eight 8-oz glasses a day and no matter how I space out my water consumption throughout the day, 64 ounces just makes me feel like I'm going to burst! I can handle 48 ounces pretty well every day, so as long as I get to that point I'm happy (and yes, when I go to the bathroom it's always that nice pale lemonade color-if I get to that 64 ounce point it's just about clear...which is not necessarily a good thing).
As for the strength training, I just get bored doing it. It's very repetitive and is nowhere near as engaging as heading outside to do miles where I can see all the interesting things going on around me. I do want to get back into doing yoga. I have a yoga DVD specifically for people who are heavier that I like to use and I always feel good and stretched out afterward. I know the strength training and exercises to make me more flexible will help me in the long run (figuratively and literally LOL) so that's why I included that picture of some of my accessories.
I also like to have visual representations, being able to visualize what my weight loss will potentially look like is motivational for me. I love looking at other people's before/after pictures because it inspires me to do the same for myself. And so I used the virtual weight loss simulator at modelmydiet.com to make a before/after simulation to use on my board. And yes, I'll be taking pictures to document my weight loss this time...another motivation for me personally as I know I'll push to stay on the wagon so I can have pics that show my progress.
The last picture I have on my board is of some food-a Chicken Caesar Salad specifically (you can find the recipe for the one in the picture here). This is just to remind me to choose healthy things. Now granted, a Chicken Caesar Salad could potentially be pretty bad for you depending on how much dressing and how the chicken is cooked, but for me the picture is a representation of healthy eating-not necessarily about the particular entree pictured. Though just to mention it, I never put dressing on my salads...to me dressing is just yucky-and kind of defeats the purpose of my salad anyway. Some people say the dressing is for flavor, but I put some cheese and bacon bits on my salads to achieve that (I'm really bad about getting enough protein and fat in my diet, I'm usually a HUGE carb addict-this is just one way to get some other nutrients in there).
Anyway, I added the "NO EXCUSES" since I'm awful about that (too tired, don't feel like it, I'll do it tomorrow instead, etc etc etc). I'd like to figure out how to fill the empty parts of the background with color fill, but it doesn't seem to be working for me. I still need to tweak it so it flows better and there's less white space...but, here's what I've got so far. Let me know what you think: