And once again, I'm back!
The past several months my challenges have been pretty lackluster (and usually abandoned), largely because of lingering health-related symptoms (fatigue and insomnia, among others…) that have thrown me off track. What's been more difficult to deal with than the symptoms themselves, though, is how I've reacted to them - I've been putting many of my fitness goals on hold until my health is more stable and certain. As a result, I've been feeling stuck, frustrated, and a bit aimless for a while now - especially since I don't know when my health will be more predictable. While many of my goals still need to be health-related, it's also time for me to figure out how to work around set-backs and uncertainty, rather than waiting for a time when everything comes together (because that probably isn't going to happen!).
I have made some progress during my hiatus, however. First, I switched my powerlifting programming to a RPE-style approach - I go in knowing what lifts I need to do and how many reps per set are on the table, but adjust the weight and volume depending on how I'm feeling. This has been a huge help energy-wise (I burned myself out on the Juggernaut volume) and mentally, because I don't feel like I'm failing when I can't keep up with my program (and I can push myself when I'm feeling good!). It's too early to tell how I'm progressing with this strategy, though - I'll re-evaluate in about a month.
Second, a little over a week ago I met with a nutritionist who has experience working with clients with health issues and food intolerances. We talked for almost three hours about my health history, current issues, things I've tried, and goals for the next few years. One of the things that came out of my initial tracking for her is that I might have some sensitivities to FODMAPs - certain types of carbohydrates found in foods - so I'm going to go a "lite" version of the FODMAP elimination diet ("lite" because my choices are already pretty restricted on AIP Paleo). This will be temporary, though, and ultimately we hope to expand my dietary choices soon.
Finally, I joined the instagram bandwagon and started posted lifting videos, largely as a way to remind myself of what I can still do (even if it's not where I'd hoped to be yet) and to help me see my progress over larger time scales. It's also encourages me to film my lifts regularly and check my form!
My goals for this challenge are designed to keep this momentum going, and start channeling my namesake's determination once again.
Food Diary: Track my food intake and any symptoms 6+ days/week. Bonus: also track on MFP to keep an eye on my macros. This record is necessary for figuring out if I do have additional food sensitivities.
First Fermentation: Pick up fermentation supplies (jars, weights, etc.) and start some ferments by the end of the challenge.
Post Progress: Post something fitness or food related on my new instagram account at least 2x/week.
Screen Curfew: 8:00 - 8:30 pm work nights, 8:30 - 9 pm weekends. Exceptions: I can use my itouch for music, meditation, and tracking apps, and my computer for MFP. This type of goal has always been the most helpful for me for getting me to bed on time, and I've also found that I'm more likely to do something ahead of schedule if I give myself a time range, rather than a specific cutoff (so hopefully I'll get off my computer at 8 pm some nights, rather than always 8:29:59 pm).
Cold Turkey: Don't use the internet for non-work activities (e.g., social media) when I'm working. 30 min over my lunch break is fine, and I can also use my phone for sending Facebook messages to my boyfriend if need be. To help me with this goal, I'll be using an app called Cold Turkey.