Oh yes, I remember feeling like this...

Saturday (late) afternoon. Thanks to all of the kind people who wrote to tell me that they understood my rantings from the last post. I don't know, I guess it's just that I've been struggling with my weight for all but six months out of the last 19 years and I'm just fed up. I know that it's my useless "all or nothing" attitude and that's got to stop because even a little bit of something good is better than uninterupted junk.

On the other hand, Tracy pointed out to me, several times, on our trip that I really shouldn't be giving myself what, essentially, amounts to permission not to do what I know I ought to by setting incredibly easy goals, either.

So, my current thinking is that I need to tweak the Ten Percent Challenge a little, give it a little more back bone, in essence, and that the basic concept is still valid. To that end, I bring you the new and (hopefully) improved Ten Percent Challenge:

Starting today, Saturday, June 5, 2004, I will do the following things consistently -

1. Eat my healthy gourmet prepared meals for all but one meal a week. The meal that I eat outside of my prepared meals will be calorically consistent with my recommended daily limit and will include vegetables of some sort. In order to facilitate this, I will start leaving all money and credit cards at home so that the prepared meals are all that is available to me. My daily latte fix will be taken care of at home, either before work or just before bed (they're decaf), so that I'm not tempted to buy something else with my latte and so that I don't have to break my "no money in the purse" pledge for any reason. As a side bonus, this should help with my budgeting, too, because eating out is expensive!

2. Start with 20 minutes of exercise six days a week at an intensity of between 65 and 75% of my maximum heart rate and build to 60 minutes, six days a week in this manner:

First week - 20 minutes each day
Second week - 22
Third week - 24.25
Fourth week - 26.5
Fifth week - 29.25
Sixth week - 32.25
Seventh week - 35.5
Eigth week - 39
Ninth week - 43
Tenth week - 47
Eleventh week - 52
Twelfth week - 57
Thirteenth week - 60

3. Consistently drink at least 100 ounces of water every day. My motivation for this one will be not allowing myself diet soda until after the 100 ounces are done for the day. This will either guarantee that I won't have any caffeine (which is good) and/or that I'll at least get my minimum water in before taking in caffeine for the day.

4. Find something to celebrate every day and share it here.

5. Focus on the positive changes that I'll be making in my life and the loving way that I'll be treating my body. Mirror that attitude in the way that I talk and think about myself. I'm a good person with a lot to offer and I need to stop running myself down just because I'm afraid that if I don't do it first, someone else will.

My goal is to see a 10% loss by my 37th birthday in October. I believe that, by following the program above, this is very do-able. Most important of all is that, for the first time in a long while, I feel determined and ready to take this thing on. As I sit here now, I'm mildly hungry - not starved - and 100% on program for the day. I need to get my 20 minutes in before I eat dinner, which is no problem, plus two more 32 ounce bottles of water, and I'm done. I can do this. I can do this. I can do this.


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