Healthful living is not a destination. It is a journey. You don't wake up one morning and think, "Wow, it looks like I've made it! I've reached my goal weight, so now I can stop working so hard. Forget exercise, and bring on the butter...and sugar...and donuts...and monster cookies...and Butterfingers...and LemonHeads...(oh wait, I got distracted)."
The journey to a life of health and happiness is something you have to work for every single day. When you submit your points for the last time on Monday...IT'S NOT OVER! You have to continue living the habits that you've spent the last 8 weeks forming. If you are looking forward to stopping all this madness (daily exercise, lots of veggies and gallons of water), you will have missed the entire point of participating in the challenge...you know, the "creating healthy HABITS" part.
Don't get me wrong...I'm not saying that you shouldn't indulge on some things that you've been avoiding. We all need a break every once in a while, and a Butterfinger blizzard isn't going to undo all of your hard work. BUT, a Butterfinger blizzard, huckleberry cheesecake, fried chicken and loaded baked potatoes might. The key is to allow yourself a small indulgence and then let that be enough. Enjoy those things that you REALLY love and leave the rest alone. The same goes for exercise. If you miss a day or two here and there, that's okay. It's when you start missing 3 or 4 or 12 days of exercise that you need to reign yourself in and recommit to do more. And don't forget to make your time in the gym, or on the road or in front of an exercise video count. Don't just go through the motions. You went to the effort of getting dressed (that alone can be a workout...think sports bra or wetsuit), you might as well get sweaty and be exhausted. It seems counterintuitive, but you WILL feel better. Tell yourself, "I can do hard things!" and then do them. You may be a little sore, but the sense of accomplishment and the boost in energy and mood will change how you approach your day.
Our goal is to help you see that continuing to eat fruits and veggies and limiting your sweets is NOT restrictive. Being heavier than you want to be is restrictive. Not being able to stand or walk or participate in what is happening around you is restrictive. Indigestion and heartburn from eating greasy burgers and fries is restrictive. On the other hand, having the energy to chase your kids around the park is freeing. Feeling loads of energy from getting the right amount of protein and carbs allows you to accomplish more every day. Reaching your goals is liberating and leaves you open to a happier, healthier life! Don't miss out on what is ahead by giving up now. Continue to be a work in progress.
And of course, be sure to gather your team and sign up for the next challenge (c'mon, I'm allowed a few shameless plugs)! Here's the link in case you missed it the past few days!! And feel free to share this with your friends, family, co-workers, etc. The more, the merrier healthier!!