Sunday, August 18, 2013

Final Results of the Birthday Challenge

Tomorrow is the day!  The day of my birth!  Which means many things, but for the purposes of this blog, it means that the Birthday Challenge is complete!  Two month ago, on June 18th, I issued a challenge to myself to lose 15 lbs by my birthday.  At the time, I was at a plateau in my weight loss journey and had fallen off the healthy living bandwagon.  By challenging myself, I hoped to get over the hump of this plateau and get back on track.

This morning was my final weigh-in for the challenge, as tomorrow is my birthday and I don't plan on blogging, but I do plan on indulging in some cake.  So without further ado, I am thrilled to report that the Birthday Challenge was a huge success!  I lost a total of 15.4 lbs!  I am so proud of what I accomplished in the past two months and not just in regards to the weight I've lost.

Some highlights from the Birthday Challenge include:

  • I've taken exercise to the next level and am now working out 6 days a week.  I've made it a part of my every day life by alternating running days and cross-training days, but also allowing myself one rest day.
  • I've taken running to the next level, too. At the beginning of the Challenge, I was running small spurts anywhere between .25 miles to .5 miles.  I've been pushing myself physically over the past few weeks, though, and am now averaging between 2 and 2.5 miles each time I run. 
  • I've changed the way I eat, in that I eat more frequently now than I did before.  I try to eat every 2 hours and I'm also more mindful of what food I am eating.
  • Although I am watching what I eat, I am enjoying life (see above in regards to the cake I am going to enjoy tomorrow) and I know that this is what I have to do to successfully keep the weight off.  I know if I deprive myself, that binge eating is not far away, so by letting myself indulge every now and then, I can avoid binges.
  • I've drastically cut back on the amount of soda I drink.  I didn't drink soda all that much before, but I do love a cold Pepsi every now and then.  I rarely drink it anymore and have been drinking water instead.
  • I have tried, somewhat successfully, to stay hydrated by increasing my water intake, particularly when I workout.  It is safe to say that I drink more water now than I ever have in my life. 
  • Thanks to this challenge, I have surpassed the 50 lb mark and have officially lost 52.3 lbs since January. 
  • I now weigh less than the weight I fibbed about on my drivers license (about 17 lbs less, I might add).  I've seen this e-card floating around the Internet that says something to the effect of "I just want to lose enough weight so that I am the same weight that I lied about on my drivers license."  It makes me laugh every time I see it.
  • I realized that it probably isn't the best idea for me to weigh myself every day, but I'm still a work in progress as far as this goes. I need to worry less about the number on the scale and more about how I feel and how my clothes fit, etc. 
  • I had good days over the course of the challenge, but I've also had my share of bad days.  I've had days where I've been pissed at the scale or I've eaten too much or made poor food choices, but rather than let that get me down as it has in the past, this time, it's been motivation for me to do better.
  • I feel better in general and about myself.  I have more energy (although not as much as I would like, but definitely more than before), more confidence, and I feel better in my own skin.  
  • I learned that I am absolutely capable of doing whatever I put my mind to and that the obstacles that challenge me the most are not physical, but mental. 
I've really enjoyed the Birthday Challenge and what it's pushed me to do, so as I previously mentioned, I'm going to issue myself another challenge to keep up the momentum and get me closer to my goal weight.  Between my birthday and the end of the year, I'd like to lose another 23.9 lbs.  Losing another nearly 24 lbs in the next 4 months is another challenging goal to be sure, but I know I can do it and am looking forward to it! 

"Ambitious goals make for outstanding achievements."