It was 12:30 am on my 33rd birthday. I had been up since 6 am the previous morning. The wind was howling outside of my tent, blowing snow and bitter cold. I was putting on my boots to hike up to the top of Mt. Bierstadt to watch the sunrise. This was going to be a good year!
Flashback to December 26th, 2011: the day I made the decision that I was going to start getting my life together. I was going to lose weight, be happier and start living out my dreams regardless of what other people said.
Fast-forward to today: It’s January 1, 2013 and I can say that I have lost 60 lbs. this year by exercising and changing my diet to more reflect a Paleo diet. I am also on my way to hiking the CDT in 2013 and I am pretty happy these days. This past year has been full of ups and downs, and I want to share some of the best and worse times with you.
The not so good stuff:
- Getting divorced and going through that emotional process
- Starting a new life with many unknowns laying before me
- Changes in things I thought were concrete; like my parents’ marriage
- Learning that working out and staying motivated isn’t as easy as I thought
- Stupid Pontiacs that need to have their brakes changed all the time!
- Realizing that not everyone will support my new way of thinking and how I want to live
The good stuff:
- Moving to Boulder to be closer to work- 7 min commute vs. 1 ¼ hrs previously
- Hiking up Mt. Bierstadt for my birthday and watching the sunrise over the Rockies, by myself
- Running the Colorado Spartan Race with my sister- I now love obstacle races!
- Starting to run and running the Bolder Boulder 10K and Merrill Down & Dirty 10K
- Committing myself to meditation and reading at least one book a month
- Going to therapy to work out my ‘issues’
- Learning that I am tougher then I thought I was; mentally & physically
- Most importantly, reevaluating my life and what I want out of it. A clear path is the only way to move forward.
I started out the year with just another New Year’s resolution, but now I know that even though they are cliché in a way, they are important to make. They’re a reminder of what you want to accomplish for the year; how to be a better you. I started out just saying I wanted to lose 75lbs, but what made me lose 60lbs was remembering why I wanted to lose the weight. Constantly reminding yourself of the why is what keeps you going after you’re sick of the diet change, the new foods and the new way of thinking about your daily activities. It’s also not about what you are losing but what you are gaining from this. Feeling better, looking better, playing with your kids without getting winded, having a more positive mind set and not just having a dream but the will to make it happen.
Setting goals that are attainable are the most important part of this whole transition. You can’t just say “I’m going to lose 75lbs,” because it won’t work. I learned it’s easier to say, “this week I will exercise 5 days this week and only drink 3 beers this weekend.” These are attainable goals that keep you focused, but also help you reach your big goal. Last thing I will say is that you will fail at some of your goals. I’m not trying to be harsh but its true. You will be distracted and you will fall back into old habits after the glow of attaining your new goals wears off. This is not the time to quit. It’s the time to test your resolve. Do you have the will and desire to get back on track. Yes, you went to McDonalds and ate a Big Mac, super sized fries and washed it down with a 6 pack of microbrew. It tasted good and felt good but you know it did not help you reach your goal. What you do now is say to yourself “I screwed up and gave myself the fix I needed to feel normal again, but its time to get back at it.” This is how you will accomplish your goal.
Although the CDT may just be a loose connection of individual trails, that together create the CDT, right now it is like a person to me. I think about it constantly and I am trying to make every decision relate to it. Getting myself ready for it and being fit to hike it, preparing properly and getting to the finish — is my New Year’s resolution. Next year, I hope to be writing about what an amazing trip it was and where I am at in my life.