A week ago, I shared my official loss in weight and inches after finishing Advocare’s 24-day challenge.*
What I didn’t share was the intangible before and afters — energy, motivation, and overall sense of well-being.
The day before I started the challenge, I had an overwhelming sense of feeling all-around yucky and decided to write down exactly what I felt. I had a hunch it would serve as inspiration when I faced those difficult days on the challenge.
Here’s how I described my state of body and mind:
“General sick feeling, constant headaches, gut discomfort, feel hungry but nothing sounds good. Extremely tired and lethargic – almost coma-like at times. Overall emotions and confidence: I don’t like myself very much. I know I’m not making good choices so I’ve been really hard on myself, which leads to a lot of negative self-talk.”
Looking back at my pre-challenge days, what’s interesting to note is how perpetual the cycle was. My food choices felt like a trap I couldn’t get out of, and the emotional consequences were a recurring trap of negative self-esteem.
To complete the picture, let me share something else I documented the day before I started the challenge — A food journal of what I ate.
Breakfast: Scrambled eggs with cheese; 2 pieces of white toast topped with butter and cinnamon sugar; coffee; orange slices
Morning snack: Animal crackers
Lunch: BBQ ribs; canned green beans; 3 pieces of cornbread (I can’t deny I make a mean batch of cornbread. :)); a few grapes
Afternoon snack: Ice cream; cookies (I didn’t keep track of how much, but I’m pretty sure both were more than the suggested serving size)
Supper: 3 pieces of pizza
Evening snack: More animal crackers (It’s sad when Mommy eats more of these than the kids.) 🙂
It doesn’t take a scientist to see the correlation between what I ate and my overall energy/emotions.
As I faced temptation early on in the challenge, all these notes gave me the motivation I needed to stick with my new habits, because I did NOT want to go back to the person I was.
For anyone embarking on a major life change — especially a new diet or fitness regimen — I highly recommend writing down how you feel BEFORE you start. Be brutally honest with yourself.
Then as you hit those walls of frustration or are tempted to quit, revisit your notes to remember what motivated you to start in the first place. Tell yourself, “I refuse to go back to that person and that life.”
Maybe even write those words on your notes, and then frame that puppy and hang it in your kitchen. The more you repeat the mantra, the more your body and emotions will follow.
*My completion of Advocare’s 24-day challenge is not a personal endorsement of Advocare or any of its products. Advocare’s products may cause adverse health effects in some people and shouldn’t be entered without full understanding and consultation with a physician.
Scale photo by Rostislav_Sedlacek/BigStock.com