one year later.

There was this time, lets say about 365 days ago, I made a list of five goals I wanted to complete.  They were simple and cliche goals that almost everyone makes around January 1st: lose weight, be more active, have better time management, take a cooking class, and pay off my credit cards & stop unnecessary shopping.

I wrote them out with sincere hopes and dreams of completing them but in my heart, I did not actually believe I could do it.

Then a funny thing happened, I began to care about myself.  I began to realize that I matter.  I began to see that I needed to do these things not because they were New Year’s Resolutions, but because my health (both mental and physical) was at stake and that is not something you mess around with at age twenty-one.

My approach to weight loss has always been simple, eat less and you lose weight.  Honest to god, that is the real truth.  Its not eating green smoothies, its not taking supplements, its not working out for 6 hours a day, and its certainly not starving yourself either.  It is eating less.  As simple as this philosophy may seem, it is not always as simple to do in practice.

As I’ve noted before, I’m an emotional eater.  I will eat because I feel bad, sad, upset, happy, giddy, etc.  Give me a reason to eat and I will do it.  Learning to cope with my emotions in different ways has been difficult but I have been doing pretty well for the most part.  Yes, there are always still days where I sit and eat chocolate by myself while watching a sappy movie (Pride and Prejudice anyone?), but that is who I am.  The difference is that I’m not doing this every day of my life.

This year past year, I completely changed my life.
What did I do this year? I:

  • switched into a major that I absolutely loved, despite being “impractical”
  • raised my gpa from a 3.02 to a 3.34 in two semesters and summer session
  • became active and started walking a lot more
  • started taking a hot yoga class every week that I love so much and makes me feel so much better
  • lost 37 pounds
  • was cleared from having to go on any medication for high cholesterol, high HDL, and other scary healthy problems that were a reality for me in 2010
  • realized that my love for cooking and baking far outweighs academics
  • discovered amazing friends and people who make me feel better and don’t bring me down
  • officially have $0 in debt (thanks mostly due to my parents helping me, love you <3)

Yes, those things I accomplished for the most part fit in with New Year’s Resolutions that I made last January 2011, but the truth is that I did those things because I made a change within myself.  I realized that I needed to take control of my life.  None of it really came from stupid New Years Resolutions.  January is just another month and 2012 is just another year for me to continue to do things that make me happy.

I am not a long-term goal setter in general.  I do not do well with things where I cannot see an end in sight and often feel overwhelmed by them.  Instead, I have made some general goals for the next few months (I would say into about April or May) that I hope to accomplish.

  1. Continue with hot yoga.  This has been the best thing I have added into my life since October.  It is a serious workout and I always feel so good after I do it.  I can’t really afford to do it more than once a week, but I have noticed a significant difference in muscle strength and definition since October!
  2. Add more cardio into my life. I have not been doing enough cardio.  I would contribute it as part of the reason my weight loss progress has been stagnant lately.  I would like to add in about two to three days of 40 to 50 minutes of cardio each week.  I was doing it over the summer and just got lazy as the holidays approached.  I’m hoping now that school is done and I have more free time, this will become more of a reality.
  3. Get my eating habits in check.  I’ve had a crazy two months, and my eating habits have gone down the drain.  Chocolate is a daily occurrence in excess and my body is definitely feeling it.  While I wish I could say I was just eating out of boredom, I contribute it a lot to emotional eating.  I stopped tracking the food I was eating around October, and have definitely just been maintaining my weight since then.  Its time to get back to tracking to lose the last thirty to forty pounds!
  4. Stop weighing myself every single day.  I think this is a really bad habit I have.  On the one hand, it really keeps me in check when I have a bad night of eating.  On the other hand, it really messes with my head.  I seriously need to get back to weighing myself just once a week.
  5. Save money. This is pretty self explanatory.  Without any debt or school taking up my time, I really need to work a lot and save some money.

Okay, so those are pretty cliche goals, I’m not going to lie.  However, I think that these are manageable goals for me.

This past year has made me invigorated about my life.  I feel such a sense of meaning, even if I don’t have a plan right now.

And the truth is, you just have to look at these pictures from 2010 and the end of 2011 to see the different woman.

2010

2011

Alright, I’m off for now! Hopefully there will be some delicious recipes coming your way in the future for you to try 🙂  I have a few ideas floating around in my head at the moment.

Have a wonderful Wednesday ❤

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About Emily

musings of a twenty-something.
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9 Responses to one year later.

  1. You look GREAT!! I am so happy to see you so happy. You are the best! Can’t wait to see you later! ❤

  2. Heather says:

    my dearest emilinaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa –

    i am so proud of you. I remember sitting in my apartment talking about all these goals. I remember talking about shopping and credit cards and working and clothes. and i remember talking about weight loss and health choices and doing things for YOU (and for me.) YOU ARE A ROCK STAR. (and i feel inspried after reading this post!!!)

    also – i stopped daily tracking YEARS ago (after i lost the first 35/40 lbs or so, i think) but every time i start to feel a little bit “UGH! i should pay more attention to eats/moves” then i start tracking again – just for a few days – maybe a week tops – and i always feel like “my old self” and am able to pick back up wtih the healthy decisions (make one. then make another!) and start to physically (and mentally!) feel better/see progress. Just a quick tip!

  3. This post makes me so happy. First of all, you look amazing! You have such a good head on your shoulders and I wish I had your wisdom at your age (hell, even now haha). Congrats on getting out of debt- what a great feeling!

    I love that you are digging hot yoga- it’s the best! 🙂

  4. Kate says:

    Wow, you look great! Major props for the weight loss and most importantly, gaining back your health.

    I really understand the emotional eating thing. I will really look for an excuse to overeat, and it’s been hard to recognize the feelings that precipitate a binge so it doesn’t happen.

  5. Congrats on a great year! You look fabulous and it’s clear you’re feeling worlds better. Here’s to a year that’s even better than the last!

  6. Lynne says:

    Fab. before and after picts. Congratulations. I lost a large amount of weight in 2011 and stalled out the day after Thanksgiving. Getting back on track is hard and it’s a mental battle, that’s for sure. One thing that helped me has been drinking herbal tea when I want chocolate or other distraction. Good luck. You look great.

  7. Krystal says:

    First off congrats to you on a great year! I just stumbled upon your page from a pinterest garbage bread post and I have read just about everything lol. I love all of your blog entries, food posts, and everything else as well! I am absolutely inspired by you! I’m making this my year to change and I’ve been working hard since January, some days I just feel no motivation and seeing your page just inspires me to keep going, and that it’s totally worth it! I also love to cook and bake so i’ts completely normal that you asked for cooking things for your birthday, I did the same lol! I hope you have another great year and I will definitely be keeping up with your stuff!

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