1K Words for 100 Days


1K Words for 100 Days

You may have read a few weeks ago the post entitled, New Year Ramblings And Why I Must Write. I wrote about how I know that deep down inside my soul that I am a writer.  I have always had the dream to be published in some way outside of a self-published blog.   I love writing very much.  Some have even said I’m pretty good at it.  I find that hard to believe sometimes but, “HEY THANKS!”

A big thing I wanted to change in 2015 was that I wanted this to be the year that I truly became a writer.  I want to spend far more time writing and I want my writing to get to more people.  The funny thing is that I came to realize where my writing was falling apart.  I was approaching writing the same way I see many people approach food and exercise.  You want to change so desperately and that is not a bad thing but you are so motivated to change that you try to change way too quickly.  For example, you say you will go on a “diet” and you will hit the gym 5 days a week and follow a routine that includes weight training and cardio.  You follow your plan for a few days and it goes well.  It is hard but, by golly, you can do this. #noexcuses.  Then life starts to get in the way and slowly but surely (or perhaps not so slowly) you stop because it is just too hard.  The change was too quick for it to be sustainable.  How would I coach that person?  I would assign one eating habit every week or every two weeks.  We’d build on that one habit bit by bit until there is a new way of living.  For exercise, we’d start with getting used to movement a few times a week.   Whatever you love doing a few times a week is good.  Once that is established you start working on more developed workout plans.  As you work towards to change habits one at a time you are establishing true change that will be sustainable and will actually stick.   It is slow, and sometimes hard, work.  It goes against our fast paced society and its desire for a quick change or transformation.  While such things can occur it is not normal and often falls apart eventually.   No one likes slow change.  But, the ones who slow down long enough to give it a try usually find that it works and that they are better for it.

All that being said, I have found that I was trying to take the quick approach to my writing. I automatically jumped to wanting to be published through my blog, articles, books, etc. when I wasn’t even in the habit of writing every day. What in the world? The ultimate goal would paralyse me because I was always waiting for the big inspiration to come and it never did.  I read a quote the other day that said, ”

“If I waited to be inspired, I would be screwed.” -Neil Gaiman

How could I be a professional writer if I weren’t already writing on a consistent basis and how in the world could I even have content if I didn’t take the time to write everything down? It hit me suddenly a few weeks ago that if I really want to be a good, published writer I have to write every single day. You would think I would already know that but no one ever said I don’t struggle with stubbornness.  So, I started coaching myself how I would coach a client seeking habit change. I told myself to forget the whole idea of being published and to just write every day. I started a document and named it “Ramblings” and I gave myself the task to write something, anything, every day. I was to write a page in the document every day to the best of my ability. It didn’t even matter what I wrote. It really was just ramblings most of the time. I used that document to hash out some ideas in my head. I used it to pray and to work through some emotions. Some of it was stream of consciousness and some it became blog posts. As the weeks flowed along and I was writing more days than not I realized that writing was actually coming easily. There wasn’t much writer’s block. I really did have a lot to say and write. I just had to sit down and start writing every day. It was a good feeling.

Then I came across a writing challenge that was along the same vein as my new habit. Write 1,000 words a day for 100 days. That would add up to 100,000 words. That is a ton!! I usually don’t jump on board with ‘challenges’ because that tend to go against the whole slow habit change process. You hit something hot and heavy for a short amount of time and hope it sticks. There is often good change but often-times it doesn’t stick when the challenge is over, assuming you actually finish it. I was hesitant about doing a writing challenge because I was afraid I would fall the way of most challenges. I would quit and then feel awful and even more of a failure. The difference this time was that I was already doing this in my own way. I had challenged myself that I would write a page every day. All the 1K words for 100 days would do is tighten it up a bit. Turns out that one page at the particular format I was using was right around 850 words. One Hundred Fifty more words wouldn’t be that hard to round out to 1,000. The previous personal challenge didn’t have very many parameters so it was pretty easy to skip a day. 1K words for 100 days gives me more motivation to sit down and write out 1000 words each day.

Here are my parameters:

  1. Write my 1,000 words every morning first thing.
  2. Write Monday – Saturday . Sunday is a free pass because I try very hard to not turn my desktop computer on and other devices are just too hard to write 1000 words on.
  3. Because I won’t write on Sunday, those days won’t count towards my 100 days. So, my time will go a little longer than a straight 100 days.
  4. I can’t accumulate words. So, if I write more than 1,000 words one day then those are bonus words. The goal is 1K words in 100 days, not 100,000 words total.
  5. Write 1K words and get a check-mark for that day. If I don’t get the check-mark then I have to add a day to my calender.
  6. FOCUS
  7. Write! Write! Write!

You usually hear me talk about habit change as the key to sustainable improvement in our nutrition and fitness, but the same concepts work for other areas of you life.  If there is some area where you want positive change break your goal down into achievable steps and work on those steps/habits one at a time until you have achieved your goal.  And that includes learning to write consistently.

What is one area where you could use some habit changes??

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1K Words for 100 Days

The Virgin Diet: Week 2 Report

Well, here we are. I have finished Week 2 of the Elimination phase of  The Virgin Diet and am going into Week 3. Feel free to look here for what the Virgin Diet is and Why I am doing it and look here for my Week One Report.
 

 
How is it going? Let’s see….

  • My energy levels continue to stay level ALL DAY LONG!
  • My clothes continue to fit better and better each day.
  • The brain fog continues to remain lifted.
  • Here is a big one.  I ran 3 miles on the treadmill (run/walk intervals) on Friday and had zero knee pain.  And then I had no knee pain later in the evening and none the next day.  WHAT?!?!?  I don’t even know what it is like to live pain-free.
  • Overall, I just feel better.
  • My cravings for bad food is almost completely gone.  I just don’t want junk anymore.  I still love my chocolate and I still love my sweets but healthier alternatives scratch that itch just fine now. I do occasionally want a good biscuit or piece of pizza but I’ve noticed that usually think about those things when I’m hungry.  If I stay on top of my eating and don’t get overly hungry much I don’t think about the other foods.

 
I have one more week of the elimination phase which is when you leave all gluten, dairy, corn, soy, eggs, artificial sweeteners, and peanuts out of your diet.  Like I said last week, I might choose to go one more week but we’ll see how that goes.

Then I will start the re-introduction phase.  I will take ONE of the seven foods and add IT to my diet once a day for four days (Monday-Thursday) and then take it back out again the last three days (Friday-Sunday).  Then start the process again on Monday with the next food.  This process is not cumulative.  So, if I choose gluten the first week and then dairy the second, I won’t keep allowing gluten the second week.  It is one food per week.  This is to set up the testing the best possible way so that you can be confident that a bad reaction is because of that particular food you reintroduced that week. Make sense?
 
What happened this week that wasn’t planned?

  • I got SICK!!  Last week my son had a terrible cold and apparently he shared it with me. It was pretty bad and I was miserable for at least two days.  That put a huge damper in my workout plans.  Amazingly, I stayed on plan despite it all.  My husband was a smart butt and made a comment to the effect of , “But, I thought the Virgin Diet fixes everything!  You can’t get sick!!”  Yeah, I do think it does fix a lot of things but it doesn’t stop viruses. LOL!
  • We went to Moe’s on Sunday while out shopping for a new bed.  I learned that Moe’s is pretty safe while eating this way.  You can get the burrito bowl (no tortilla) with the pico and the guacamole and no cheese and you can stay on plan.  I drank unsweet tea.  It was delicious and I needed to eat out.  HOWEVER, I ate a few chips!!  *GASP*  That totally violated the ‘no corn’ rule.  I probably ate ten chips.
  • Sunday night, last night, I did start having some rather profound knee pain.  I mean I woke up with it throbbing like someone was tightening a vice grip on it.  I took some Advil and went back to sleep.  I kept thinking, “What in the world could it be?  I’ve had no pain for 2 weeks and now this!!” And then I remembered I ate those chips.  Hmmmmm!  Could I have really reacted that much so quickly?  I guess it is possible.  But, I’m not 100% sure either.
  • I did have some moments of being too hungry and that put me in a bad mood.  I mean a FOUL mood.  I would eat and would be much better.  But, I know now that I have got to stay on top of my eating and my hunger levels.  I need to plan better and pack food more often and carry more water with me.  There is no reason ANYONE should have to deal with me hungry like that. 😉 And I bet I wouldn’t have eaten those chips at Moe’s if I weren’t so hungry going in there.

 
I am very happy with how things are going with The Virgin Diet.  I am convinced now of how prevalent food intolerances are and how they can affect your body.  I was very skeptical until I have felt the difference in my own body.  It really is humbling and eye-opening.  We’ll see what the re-introduction phase brings.  Whatever it does bring I am pretty convinced that I will be eating this way or some version of this way for the long haul.  I can’t go back now.

 

How about you?  Do you have any questions?  Please share your thoughts below!!!
 
 
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The Virgin Diet: Week 2 Report

The Virgin Diet and Why I am Doing it

I am not a big fan of the word ‘diet’.

AT ALL….

My dream would be for women (and men) to forget about being on diets and just focus on eating healthy, whole, real foods and exercising. That’s why when I am talking to people I don’t ever say I am on a diet. I always say I am focusing on eating healthy, real foods instead.

I don’t like diet fads even more. They prey on those people who are desperate for a change and the promise of quick results is very tempting. I remember my Dad saying a long time ago that there is nothing more faddish than nutrition. So very true. From low-fat to Atkins to Plant-Based to Paleo to Sugar Busters to whatever you want to call it. There will always be a bandwagon and people to jump on them.

With all that to say I am hesitant to admit that I am adopting a ‘diet’ on Monday. Ha! Don’t all diets start on Monday?!?!?!

 

I am starting The Virgin Diet.


My motivation to start this diet is not for the ‘seven pounds in seven days’ even though that would be nice. I am more patient than that.

Let me explain what The Virgin Diet is basically. It is an “elimination diet.” That means that you eliminate the seven most common food allergens from your diet for three weeks. You then reintroduce them one at a time (1 week each) to test your tolerance. If your body reacts you know you are intolerant of that food and should probably keep it out.

The allergens are…

Gluten
Dairy
Eggs
Soy
Corn
Sugar
Peanuts

So, I will take all seven out of my diet for three weeks. And then in the fourth week I will pick one from the list and reintroduce it to my diet and see how my body reacts to it. Then the next week I will reintroduce the next one and see how my body reacts and so on. Reactions can be pain, bloating, ‘brain fog’, sinus issues, etc.

Why am I doing this drastic ‘diet?’

 

1) I have awful knee pain. I’ve had it since I was a teenager and it is only getting worse as I get older. It really affects my training and my everyday life. I am 34 and feel like I am in my 60’s sometimes. It is my understanding that if you do have a food intolerance it can exhibit itself in joint inflammation and pain. If you pinpoint the intolerance and eliminate it the pain can go away. I said to my husband, “If giving up ice cream for the rest of my life meant no knee pain then I would do it today.”

 

2) This is where I sound vain. 😉 No matter how hard I train and how closely I watch what I eat I can’t seem to lose the rest of this weight. Before you say, “But, you always say it is all about goals and how your clothes fit….yada yada yada,” I will say you are absolutely right. I am super proud of how far I have come and no one can take that away from me. But, this is just weird. Even my husband has said, “I really think there is something else going on here than we know.” Well, a food intolerance can cause bloating and prevent you from losing fat due to the inflammation it causes. My research shows that if you drop the cause of the inflammation your body will be able to finally release that fat.

 

3) What is there to lose? Nothing. What is there to gain? Potentially tons. If I do this and find I have no intolerances then I will have had an awesome exercise in self-control and I would know that I don’t have them. Moving forward. BUT, if I do pinpoint an intolerance and I take it out of my diet then I can gain so much. I will feel better inside and out. Part of me prays there is one so that I can have an answer but we’ll just have to see.

 

I have heard of people doing this kind of elimination diet before and I thought it was just a bunch of bunk.  Yeah sure, it ‘worked’ for you.  I bet it worked because these diets require you eat nothing but real, unprocessed, whole foods.  Of course your health improved.  But, I already eat that way and something is still wrong.  It took a long time of being very stubborn but I am here now and I am READY to give this a try.

Today is DAY ONE.  And ironically I am meeting a friend for a playdate at Chick-fil-A. HA!  But, I will have my apple and almond butter in tow.

I plan to update you here on how it is going about weekly or so.  This is going to be a profound experiment with me as the guinea pig.  My husband is completely on board with me doing this and bless his heart, he’ll be the one listening to my gluten-deprived rantings.  Say a prayer for him. 😉

 

WISH ME LUCK!!

 

If you have ever done the Virgin Diet or something like it I would love to hear from you.  Tell me all about your experience and your thoughts.

The Virgin Diet and Why I am Doing it

Radical by David Platt: A Review

A Review…

How in the world do I review a book likes this?!?!?!

Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream

As I was finishing this book up all I could say to my husband was that I feel like I just boxed twelve rounds and crawled out the of the ring bruised and broken.

WOW!!

Have you read it??

If you haven’t read it please RUN to the store or library and get it today.

My eyes have been opened to so many things that I need to address in my personal faith.

David Platt takes the Gospel of Jesus and brings it alongside the well-loved American Dream.  Do they jive?  Nope. Not really.

I found myself crying ugly tears many times while reading this little book. Conviction at its best.

I am too comfortable.  WAY TOO COMFORTABLE!!!

There are many stories of missionaries and their insane faith and dedication to their Savior and I found myself asking myself, “What is that makes them special?  What is it about these amazing people that made them do what they did?  Do I have what it takes?”

My conclusion?  I do have what it takes because Jesus equips all believers with what is needed to impact the world.  BUT, I have NOT been open to the opportunities. I have not asked Jesus to use me. I am not as hungry for his Word and his Movement in my life as I should be.

Man, Oh Man!  I have so far to go.

There was so much more to this book.  I could probably talk or write for days on what is said in there.  I’m sure it will come up again in this blog because it has impacted me that much.

GO!!  READ THIS BOOK!!!

That is my review. 🙂

Radical by David Platt: A Review