Thursday, November 29, 2012

Holiday Hotties December Challenge

With my job as an activity director in a retirement community, the time between Halloween and New Year's Day is wrought with awful and wonderful temptations, on an almost daily basis.

I honestly admit to using bribery to get my residents out of their rooms, and into my activities. Most of the time, the bribes include food. Usually sweets. The last taste buds left on our tongues, as we age, are the sweet ones. This is why many older people will use lots and lots of salt, when the food is already well seasoned. They simply can't taste it. But the sweet buds linger on, and I use it to my advantage. And to my disadvantage. Sugar is one of my greatest weaknesses. I simply adore it, in all is forms. But especially in cookies, cakes and chocolate.

Resident family members leave us food at the nurse's station, they send us food in the mail. They leave it on our desks. Vendors give us food, doctors send us cakes and donuts. There are parties for staff, parties for residents. Then a few more parties for staff. We just love to party and to eat. 

It's no secret that most Americans experience a 3-9 pound weight gain during the holiday season. Exercise routines slack off and eating plans slip beyond recognition of healthy.

Thankfully I have two accountability groups to keep me honest and mostly on track during this food-filled season.

My running girlfriends started a Healthy Challenge Facebook group to keep us accountable with eating and exercise. We post our food & exercise daily. Share recipes and tips as well. These girls are great - I also run with them almost weekly and enjoy their camaraderie and friendship.

My Ninety day challenge group coach Lindsay Phillips started a Holiday Hottie challenge. It could not have come at a better time. And those who know me have seen a bit of my competitive nature. Well, seriously, no one LIKES to lose, right?

Our Hottie challenge started the Monday after Thanksgiving. We were given a grid of ways to earn points. Whoever earns the most points by Dec 31 wins a prize.

I've printed off a copy at home and work, so I can remember what will earn me which points. Some things are easy - we almost all post our daily menu & workout. Now I just need to remember to snap a picture of my sweaty self, and get some pictures of my healthy meals. Well, I need to get back to some healthier meals before I start taking those pictures.

My sister, Mary, who has been doing the 90 day challenge with me has had some amazing results. See for yourself:

I am so proud of her! And because I am a chicken, I am showing her before/after pictures, instead of mine. When I get a little farther along, maybe I'll be brave enough to show you those. Maybe.

I will show you this nice little video Mary took of me doing push-ups. I have always struggled with upper body strength, and the only way I could do push ups was on my knees. On of my "crazy, awesome" goals is to be able to do 25 toe push ups  I'm not quite there yet, but, check this out!!  If you can hear the sound, that is Mary and my parents cheering me on in the background.

I've never met any of the girls in my Hottie challenge face to face. We do not even live in the same states. We post daily, encourage each other and are forming connections that are strong and lasting. We are all working on becoming better versions of ourselves.

My sister Mary is racking up major points in our challenge. She is creating cheers for all of us. Here is the one she came up with for me (think: Liar, liar - pants on fire).

If you are interested in this kind of challenge, just find Lindsay Harrish Phillips on facebook, and friend her. Tell her I sent you (and it might earn me some extra points!!). Pin It Now!

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