March 13, 2017
The 8 week challenge has been a journey towards healthy living paved with good intentions, feeble attempts, successes and failures. This 8 week challenge has been just that--a challenge. I realized I was trying to run a long distance race in a full out sprint, a pace that is not sustainable in a long race. With this being my second go at the challenge, I had not altered my approach. Going full out all the time will soon result in fatigue and defeat. I began to question myself, why is it so hard this time? Why am I not seeing the results I desire? Why am I sabotaging myself by eating so many sweets? I just could not seem to get it together. At times I just said, "Forget it. I am not going to complete the challenge this time." But then I said, "Lynne, you are not a quitter. You don't have to execute this perfectly to benefit from the challenge. There is victory and gain in the struggle."
After reflecting on my journey, I decided this challenge has been a success. NO, I may not have seen the sorts of gains in fitness and weight loss I saw in the first challenge, but I did establish a more realistic way of incorporating physical and dietary changes into my life. It did not need to be so drastic. It is ok to ease into change. How long could I sustain working out at high intensity twice a day? That was not a realistic way of forming the habit of healthy living. Healthy living includes balance. I gave myself permission to do less, but work hard when I did work. I decided I was not going to beat myself up for having treats. Total elimination was never my goal: my goal is to learn to eat them in moderation. It is not the occasional slip up and misstep that leads to poor health. Through this challenge I am building the capacity to honestly evaluate my health decisions and actions. I learned that I must set realistic goals that will ultimately lead to the long term goal of improved fitness and weight loss.
My greatest joy during this challenge has been the privilege of encouraging and supporting other members as they strive to improve their health. There is nothing like seeing another rejoice at reaching a goal or performing a once alluded skill. The challenge helps build the RHF community.