Phew! Week 12 has arrived already! How do that happen? It seems like a lifetime away when you start off but before I knew it I was on week !2! Time to reflect.
12 weeks is the time it takes to develop new habits- the changes are effortful up until that point, or so I've read. After that they should bed in.
The idea is that you set out to make a behavioural change and then stick with it systematically for 12 weeks and after that point it sort of becomes the new default position. Well, we'll see next week!
Here are a few reflections.
Gave up drinking for about 8 weeks completely and now relaxed that a bit but have well below national guidelines each week. Don't feel deprived and don't need it as a crutch. Saved a load of money. Sleep Better.
Gave up everything like sweets & cake for about 16 weeks now. Treats are not things I eat. Or rather treats are a cup of tea and a banana. Bananas feature heavily in shopping now.
Didn't miss the sweet stuff once, not even a twinge. Saved a load of money.
Surprised myself by getting running and quickly getting over 5KM but that isn't an established habit yet - I've got a busy week and some of the days will mean three runs this week will be hard to do. But I'm factoring in the runs and or lack of them into the week's planning like I never would have dome previously. This still needs work
Really improved my cycling, speed, endurance and distance all improved. Back as fit as I have ever been - taken decades off my fitness age.
Started doing strength training (Weights) slowly building up arms & shoulders to start with.
Learned a huge amount about my own nutrition. Planning nutrition carefully every day and still experimenting. Eating healthily every day and saving a fortune in for bills.
Learned to get a grasp on the link between diet, activity and body weight. I know I can manage it now. I know what the previous downfall has been (booze) and thats been put to one side. I know if I need to shed a Kilo how to do it and how quickly I can do it.
Learned that weight loss sometimes speed up and sometimes slows down but weight loss happens.
Changed my beliefs about what a healthy me is and is going to be. This has been the biggest shake up. Previously I'd have given you a million god reasons why BMI didn't apply to me. No longer. I know I have more weight to lose to get to a healthy BMI and I might accept a few KG over the top of the range but not the 10+ I would have argued for previously. I'm building up a composite of what a healthy me looks like, eats like, relaxes like, exercises like and lives like.
That's been the biggest change and its still not quite there partly because I'll very soon be entering uncharted territory. (here be dragons) I'm pretty close to the lowest adult weight I've ever been, and I mean since I was 16, and to get to a healthy weight I'm going to go below that. When I started the 12 week plan I could not conceive of that and I still struggle with the idea.
The healthy eating is fun and frankly gets easier and easier as the habits build. I struggle when Im doing a big physical activity but I went away and did a load of research and I asked questions on here. Now I get it much closer to what I need. The exercise is a revelation. I'm fitter than I've ben in decades. Stronger in some ways than I can ever remember being and this was totally unexpected.
12 weeks is a good start. Its got some things into the easy box. Some things are still in the I don't know how that works box and I'm sure there is a whole load of stuff in the you haven't thought of this yet box.
Fore the next 12 weeks I am going to have to find time for exercise - well running - I do cycle regularly but the running is what has really boosted my fitness. The strength exercises need addressing too, they are not automatic. I'm still working on my mental blueprint for a healthy version of me, what I look like, what's acceptable and whats got to go. How the healthy me manages stress, anxiety and pressure, and how the healthy weight me stays a healthy weight. I think some of the things Ive take on board will need to stick around permanently - calorie counting and weighing myself for two as well as running & weights.
I;ve also learned to be patent and persistent and not be thrown off by anything. I can and will prevail.
After 12 weeks I am frankly astonished at what I have achieved and learned and the impacts I've had on my health & well being. I know there are plenty of others out there with similar reflections. SO if you are still getting your head around 12 week plan & C25K then my advice is stick with the plan, be honest, accept no excuses, get good measurements, ask better questions, set yourself ambitious targets, Don't worry about how long it will take, take responsibility, do the difficult stuff and reap the rewards for the rest of your life.
If I can do this anyone can. 12 More Weeks Bring it on!