Spring Resolution Update

We are in the midst of Dogwood Winter, the early April cold snap that seems to hit every year just as the dogwoods are in full bloom. In spite of the chill, Spring has definitely arrived. Everything is blooming, people are out and about, the mornings are filled with birdsong, and the weekends are filled with the sound of lawnmowers and the laughter of children playing outside.

The runners are out in full force as the city gears up for the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon (formerly the Country Music Marathon) in a couple of weeks. And I have entered my final week of “training” for my upcoming 10K next weekend. I use the term training loosely since I skipped my last long run, and have really only run intermittently during the time leading up to the race. I am confident that I can cover the distance, but it certainly won’t be my best performance.

The first quarter of 2016 is over, so it is time to assess my resolutions for the year, and report on my progress, or lack thereof.

Health

  • Do two sets of resistance band exercises daily at work for my shoulder
  • I still have this item on my daily planner every day. I would say I have about a 40% success rate. We recently moved offices at work, so I hoping to work this in to my “new” office routine, which includes other new habits like eating lunch in the break room rather than at my desk.

  • Use my standing desk at work, starting with an hour a day and working up to four hours a day
  • This is a habit that I have not had a lot of success with, yet. Between my nagging case of plantar fasciitis, a mild lower back strain, depression, and most recently a strained muscle behind my knee, I just haven’t felt like standing to work. I also find that I can’t do “thinking” tasks while I am standing – it’s much better for repetitive work. Perhaps that is simple something that I need to practice. Like my resistance band exercises, I plan to work this one into my “new” office routine.

  • Run 3xs a week, work up to 4xs a week
  • I am starting to run again, but not as consistently as I would like. As the weather warms, I am hoping to improve in this area.

  • Return to reduced carb eating plan
  • I have scratched this one from my list. I just didn’t enjoy the “low carb” way of eating. I had to cut out too many foods that I enjoyed, and I didn’t see myself maintaining it long-term, even though I did have some initial success.

    Over my vacation, I watched a lot of documentaries about the food industry. Two really stuck with me: Food, Inc. and Fed Up. The film Food, Inc. is about the horrible practices of factory-farming for meat production in this country. After seeing this film, and the abuse that the poor animals have to endure, I just could not stomach eating meat any more. I will still eat some seafood, but I have basically become a vegetarian. It is something that I have thought about for a while, and this film gave me the push that I needed.

    Fed Up is about the ridiculous food industry practice of putting sugar in everything, and the toll it is taking on our nation’s health. This film was so good that I watched it a second time with my family.

    After seeing these two films, I have changed my eating to exclude meat and avoid added sugar in foods. We decided to subscribe to a Farmbox Direct, which is a service that delivers fresh, organically-grown produce weekly to your doorstep. I will be discussing and reviewing this service in another post, but so far we are very pleased.

  • Get entire family to the dentist (our last dentist stopped taking our insurance, so we need a new one)
  • No progress here. Once school is out, I plan to make appointments for my daughter and myself.

  • Run 620 miles this year (Endomondo challenge)
  • I have run just over 50 miles towards this challenge, so I have some catching up to do.

  • Weight train 1x a week, work up to two times a week
  • Once I have settled back into running consistently, I will start working this one into my routine.

Well-being

  • Meditate or sit quietly for 5 minutes each day. Work up to 20-30 minutes per day.
  • I am still working on this one. Before we moved offices, I would go outside and sit for 5 minutes. Since we have moved, I haven’t yet found my new getaway spot yet.

  • Practice Daily Gratitude. Tweet daily gratitude each day.
  • I have been consistently tweeting daily, using the hashtag #DailyGratitude. If I miss a day, I make it up for it the next day.

Home

  • Eat out only once a week
  • We have been struggling with this one, but since I stopped eating meat, it has been a lot easier.

  • Completely renovate the front yard and get the back yard cleaned up
  • I have nearly completed the rose garden in front of the house. All that remains is the irrigation system. There is still quite a bit of cleanup to be done in the back yard, however.

  • Set and achieve declutter goals for each month
  • In March, we had our first declutter event, removing quite a bit of junk from a large utility shelf in our spare bedroom. We haven’t scheduled an event for April yet, but I have gotten the family to agree to one or two of hours of decluttering a week, so we can make some progress.

  • Finish closet renovation
  • Sigh … no progress.

  • Finish painting house
  • We should be able to make some progress on this now that the weather is beginning to warm up. So far, I have only worked on the foundation in the front.

Overall, I feel like I am making good progress, though there is room for improvement. In particular, I would like to establish a decluttering schedule, and be more consistent with my running and exercise routine.

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