Friday, November 1, 2013

Falling Off the Wagon

Hey all, Simone here again! First of all, I just need to say that I absolutely loved Anne's post yesterday. She is spot on about the journey and the "regeneration" that comes along with making life changes. I've been having a bit of a bumpy ride lately, but I've been rallying slowly this week, and her post was an extra reminder why we keep going. So, onward!

I don't know about you guys, but Oregon Trail was one of my favorite games as a child. Exploring the Wild West? Battling the elements? Great folk songs? That game had it all. (As a proud nerd, one of my favorite parts was watching my trail marker move across the map at the bottom of the screen and anxiously checking my progress against the calendar.)

However, the adventurous course was fraught with danger, too. Weather, snakes, sickness, bandits, and river crossings could all spell disaster for your party. Sometimes it was an unavoidable accident; sometimes you choose poorly, trying to ford the river when it was much too deep, or setting a pace too strenuous to maintain.

Well, that's kind of how my October has gone.

Did anyone else get one disease, and then die of another?
Alright, so I haven't caught typhoid, cholera, or dysentery, but I have had a lot on my plate and I've been feeling fairly run down. The excitement of getting my first "adult" job came with some side effects: on top of a busy few weeks, I'm in the process of attempting to straighten out my benefit options (#firstworldproblems, I know, but reading about insurance is less than thrilling) and needing to adapt my budget, as student loan bills are incoming. However, the siren song of a slight raise and stable employment led to a bit of an online shopping spree, as my professional wardrobe is rather limited (damn you, Target and ModCloth lapse in self control).

I find that often, when you start to stray from one goal (in my case, budget adherence) your willpower also starts to waver on the rest. With a full work schedule, three nights of CrossFit a week, and usually both a night and weekend shift at my second job, things like "cooking healthy dinners" and "cleaning up the house" started to slip. And who has time to go running or pack healthy meals for work? I'll just have a Clif bar in the car.

"But it's only while the seasonal flavors are out!" you tell yourself virtuously. (Just me? Oh.)
Though I've managed to keep CrossFit a priority, as it's my favorite "me" time of the week, my diet has ultimately suffered, and the stress of mismanaged finances isn't doing me any good, either. But it's a new month, and I've got a new plan of attack!

I've put the brakes on my wardrobe overhaul (sadly, Firefly tees and jeans aren't going to cut it); I'll just have to expand it slowly over time instead of the "seasonal spree" method. I'm re-evaluating my budget and muddling through the information on selecting a health care provider and whether or not I should consolidate my federal student loans. It's not fun, but it needs to be done. Ultimately, my goal is to have a stable budget, complete with higher debt payments and a savings contribution, by January. By next fall, I'd like to have a modestly comfortable amount built up in the bank so I'm not watching my balance drop to $4 by the end of each month. (Sadly, that exaggeration isn't quite as large as I wish it was.)

Here's the fun part: with a few new crossfitters joining the crew in my garage, I've been getting some more nutrition questions, and I decided to host a "November Nutrition" challenge for everyone. So, starting today, we are all working on one nutritional goal through December 1st. Each successful day = 1 point for a total of 31 points; I'm working on prizes for everyone who gets at least 28! A number of people are going to give Whole30 a try, so for moral support (and to really "reset" my struggles lately), I will be doing my second Whole30 as well. Several other participants are focusing on reducing the amount of grain-related meals, cutting out fast food, and more. Nutrition is really the foundation of fitness and health, and I'm excited to get back on track with the best group of friends I could ever ask for!

The CrossFit pyramid: roughly 80% of your results come from your diet!

I hope everyone had a great Halloween! Our group traditionally has a "Triple Holiday" party sometime in November/December, complete with Halloween costumes, a Thanksgiving potluck dinner, and a Secret Santa exchange. This year it's going to be in mid-November, so I'm still working on my Lara costume!

How did you celebrate Halloween this year? What are you focusing on in November?


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