Here’s an honest/vulnerable post that I would like to share for this transformation Tuesday. When I lost 45 pounds about 10 years ago and wanted to make health and fitness a huge priority in my life, I was absolutely certain that I would maintain that lifestyle for the rest of my life. At that time, I had the right mentality, and I developed the appropriate habits to live my best life. Unfortunately, things happen, and the incredibly productive routine I had for myself could be pushed to the side.
As I look back over the last decade, I can definitely remember exactly what threw me out of my routine. For me, it usually comes down to a huge event that throws my life way out of balance for a long time, or, I get sick for an extended duration (I also have one long drawn out case where I introduced some bad habits to my life, but I’ll save that for another post). For my latest occurrence back in September of 2021, I was down and out with a cough that lasted six weeks after inhaling some nasty stuff from a freak vacuum cleaning incident. Yes, I was coughing up some particles for several days but I didn’t expect the cough to keep going on for several weeks forward. I guess that's something that can happen when you’re working on a project that uses porous foam that’s been sitting in the garage for over a decade that acted as a sponge and collected whatever dirt and grit that accumulated in its material throughout the years.
The six weeks out broke a routine of great habits that have been established for months. My controlled and tracked eating habits turned into constant fast food dining, and my physical activities came to almost a complete halt. I definitely won’t forget that one week when I wanted to try every single cheesecake at the Cheesecake Factory. Surprisingly, my favorite cheesecake was the “Very Cherry Ghirardelli Chocolate Cheesecake.” At the end of the six weeks, I gained 15 pounds (which took about 4 months to work off as I was strategically working off one pound a week to maintain the most muscle possible), I lost about 15% of my strength, and a lot of my conditioning. It really is interesting to see how much you can lose in a short amount of time, especially when you’ve spent months/years working on it.
After the six weeks, I would like to say that I got back on my previous routine and instantly got back to where I started, but it almost took two months afterwards to get all the habits started up again (I finally got the ball rolling after the New Year, and no it wasn’t even a New Year’s resolution). I’m not sure if I was waiting for inspiration, or if I was disheartened after losing a lot of progress I made or a combination of both, but it did prove difficult to get back into my routine. I do remember reading a quote that inspiration and motivation usually happens when you just start doing something (wish I remembered where I read that to quote it), and that’s exactly what I did, and I feel like the last few weeks have been a huge course correction for my goals. It might’ve helped that I finally installed this scanning mirror that I’ve had for years that creates a 3D image of yourself to track all your measurements, but just getting started and consistently working to get those habits going really seems to be the basis of any lifestyle you want to adopt (or re-adopt).
So what do I have to say to form some great habits, just get started and keep showing up. Yes, setbacks can happen, but do your best to avoid getting sick and try your best to maintain balance in life. When working on projects or cleaning activities that can have a lot of nasty particles floating around in the air, wear a mask.
More details on what I do to track metrics regarding what I eat, and regarding my health and fitness coming soon (quick tip, your weight measurement is just one metric and it doesn’t tell the whole story regarding your health).