Growth through Change- The #5 Things I Learned in 2015

It’s been a year since the start of my blog and shared my 2015 Resolution goals. It’s been a truly eye opening year! Many goals were accomplished, but along the way I learned some things about myself. I was reminded about my inner strength and perseverance, but also had many old fears and insecurities rear their ugly head; leading to a fulfilling yet, emotionally challenging year.

Setting goals and publicly striving for more, it leads to growth and discovery. Here are the top things I learned in 2015!

#1- The Importance of Setting Goals and Making a Planning

If you’ve heard the saying, “Failing to plan, is planning to fail,” it is incredibly true. I had many goals I wanted to accomplish over the year; fitness goals, personal relationship goals, and organization goals. Many were accomplished, but many were not…. At the start of the year I made a monthly calendar that included all of my “To Do’s,” but I found that there really weren’t enough hours in the day (with 3 children to care for) to get to everything most days; so I needed to prioritize. At first I was discouraged when I wasn’t be able to get to everything, BUT I realized that having a schedule and planning when I was going to accomplish my tasks resulted in getting A LOT more done than had I not planned to begin with.

Until you get into a routine of setting goals, developing a plan and then sticking to it…. it can be overwhelming; but it’s worth the effort.

Admittedly, I slacked a bit on my organization goals. I was able to make some good progress and I will be making that a priority again this year. I was, however, able to meet my fitness goals for the year and, making date nights a priority with my husband (almost every month), was great since we had a crazy busy year!

#2- Only You have Control of YOU!

This has become my personal motto! Not just to keep myself motivated to stick to my workout schedule and nutrition plan, but also with helping me manage my anxiety issues. I’ve mentioned in previous posts that it’s a struggle I have had to deal with most of my life and I’ve wanted to share about this more, but I haven’t quite gotten up the courage to let that heavy, dark side of me out.

Simply reminding myself that ultimately only I have control of me and my life has been a huge help. Life and circumstances are something that every person needs to deal with. We can get weighed down by outside negative influences, inner struggles or a hectic busy life; or we can remember that we DO have CONTROL! Choose to be positive, choose to take action (on your own personal goals & dreams) and choose to have gratitude for the things in your life.

#3- Technology and the Need to Disconnect!

I knew this prior to starting this blog, but after spending added time on a computer, on social media and researching now forms of social media (Twitter, Instagram and so on), I was often left feeling a need to detach and disconnect! One of the reasons I decided to stay home and leave my career was because I didn’t like being at a computer all the time. Now, as a mother, in a world that is packed full of technology distractions, I have found more than ever a need to disconnect. I want to try and show my children that we shouldn’t depend on technology in our day to day lives. It offers many benefits and is a necessity in today’s day in age for school and work, BUT it is a distraction from the world and people right in front of you.

#4- I am a Private Person

The biggest discovery for me during this year was to realize that I am really a pretty private person. This surprised me and probably surprises those of you who know me well! I’m the type of person who will talk your ear off and over share at times; but I do that with my tight inner circle. Sharing my life with the world, honestly, I found it is not something I fully enjoyed. It brought out old insecurities and made my anxiety levels sky rocket; It is a pretty one-sided medium. It’s been fulfilling to share, but I don’t know if it will ever be something I love to do in this type of format. I much prefer a face to face genuine connection.

#5- Very few things in life are easy, but the things that take effort are worth it!

Setting goals and sharing my successes and failures was a challenge. Going through my own day to day struggles with anxiety and depression battles most of the year was hard. But I didn’t use them as an excuse, I used them as my reason to preserver, and I can say that I grew in many ways. It was a year of hard work, self discovery, struggles and accomplishment. It was the good, the bad, the ugly and the amazing all rolled into one! I’m glad I pushed for more and shared along the way. It was a great experience of growth through change!

Going into 2016 I have set new goals that make me feel excited, scared and totally out of my league. It will be a tough 2016, but I am going to make it another incredible year because only I have control of my success and my life.

If you want to live your best life, to be a better you (not a new you; but your best, authentic self), then I encourage you to push for more. Take on a new challenge or follow a dream. It will be hard and you’ll likely face negativity and doubt that you’ll need to power through; but making changes to live a more fulfilling life is worth it. And as I say to myself on a daily basis, “Only YOU have CONTROL of YOU!”

Until next time……Thea 🙂

If you’d like to read more select “follow” on the bottom tool bar from your PC OR “Like” me on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/rusupermom.

Advertisements

Feedback Needed: What type of posts do you like best?

Feedback needed

I want to thank everyone who has taken the time to read and follow my blog. Your support has meant so much to me! Putting myself out there has proven to be challenging, therapeutic and humbling to say the least.

I’ve found that even though I greatly enjoy sharing my posts with you all, I am discovering it is VERY time consuming. Especially with all of the daily tasks of being a SAHM, and with my organization and weight loss/fitness goals. So, I thought I would “ask the people” so to speak; what types of posts do you enjoy the most? I’m going to try and stick to 2 posts a week and this will let me know what everyone is the most interested in!

Thank you so very much for your feedback!

Warmly, Thea 🙂

 

February’s Successes and Failures

I heard on the news that February here is the Rochester area was the coldest month on record! It was a doozy of a month…! It was so cold and snowy all month that it left everyone cranky and full of cabin fever! I tried to stay positive and did take some really cool pictures (below), but I am ready for warmer weather and some time outside!

The picture on the left is of Lake Ontario. Check out how frozen it is!! I don’t ever recall seeing ice as far as the eye can see, pretty cool! The other pictures are of my side and back yards.

Winter Collage

With all the cold and snow, well, I just can’t run outside safely. There is very little shoulder on the sides and snow and ice all over the roads. With my track record of injuries and the state of my back, it just hasn’t been worth chancing it. So my half marathon training really just started yesterday. It was a sunny, 20 degree day and the roads were pretty clear for the first time in a long time. It felt great to get out!

Here’s an overview of my successes and failures for February in regards to my resolution goals. (2015 Resolutions)

Health and Fitness:

  • Even though I got in limited running miles for the month I am still feeling confident I’ll be able to get in enough training for my half marathon in late April.
  • I did however do strength training twice a week, Yay! I am going to switch out my cross training to one day of yoga for runners and one day of Pilates. This will help me keep a focus on my core (which needs constant work to support my back issues; especially after 3 c-sections), but also keeping my cross training activities impact low and focusing on stretching and flexibility.
  • So far for the year I have lost 8 pounds. I’m actually at the lowest weight I have been in about 8 years!!! It’s crazy when I think of that. I’ve done the clean eating challenge three times since the New Year and I am also following the Weight Watchers program online. Well, being honest, I haven’t been as committed to tracking on Weight Watchers, but one thing I have learned over the years of having children, and losing weight, is that even following the program 75% of the time helps me maintain and lose small amounts.

Connections:

Vday me and Jon

  • The Hubs:
    • This month my husband and I were able to get out on Valentine’s Day for an afternoon lunch at Cheesecake Factory and then to see American Sniper! It’s been so nice to have one-on-one time, out of the house, two months in a row. I am definitely going to keep this as a priority going forward.
    • My sister also let us borrow all except the final season of Sons of Anarchy, which is really awesome! We’ve already watched two seasons this month. One of my favorite things is to just sit together and watch TV, I have no idea why, but it’s my fav. That being said, we don’t always like the same shows so when we find something we both enjoy and want to watch together it’s a total win!
  • Friends:
    • Weather and sickness really put a damper on seeing many friends this month. I had to cancel dinner and a movie with one of my best girlfriends because the roads were just terrible and it was about 2 degrees! Plus, we had to reschedule a family gathering because my girlfriend and her daughter were sick. Really, Spring, you can come now!!
    • I was able to see some good friends to celebrate their daughter’s birthday this month. Only Piece’s and I were able to go because our younger two were sick, big surprise I know! Our busy, growing families have made our get togethers limited, so we rarely see each other anymore. I was very happy that I was able to see them since they moved this weekend out of state.
  • Family:
    • We were able to have some great family fun this month. I went with Pieces & Mr. Man, my Mom, Sister, Nephew, and a few cousins and their child to Disney on Ice. It was SOOO much fun! I love to just watch them watch and experience new things. The look on their faces is priceless!
    • My big girl Piece’s got her hair cut yesterday! This might not seem like a big deal, but she cut off 10 inches to donate to Lock of Love, so it was indeed a big deal and so exciting! I think I was more nervous than she was. I am definitely attached to my hair! But man, I was so proud of her for being so brave and donating her hair to a great cause! (picture below)

Reese Hair cut Collage

De-cluttering:

  • Yikes, as usual this was my downfall! As I mentioned in an earlier post this month, (Little Victories), I did have some small successes but I didn’t come close to my 40 bags in 40 days challenge or make much progress with de-cluttering other areas of the house. This week however I was able to clean out the main floor bathroom closet. I couldn’t believe how much stuff was in there! I am going to work on this area in March.

March Goals:

  • Stick with my training schedule for the half marathon and follow the Weight Watchers program more closely. I have considered doing the Beach Body 21 Day Fix but I haven’t been able to come up with the money for the cost yet, so we will see.
  • Reschedule and have that movie and dinner night with my girlfriend G!
  • Date night with the Hubs
  • We have two family get togethers scheduled already for this month. Looking forward to them!
  • Make a cleaning schedule for each week on Sundays.
  • List the items I have been accumulating to sell on eBay!
  • De-cluttering; clean out the two other closets on the main floor AND sort through and get rid of some older, unused toys! We have WAY too many!

Hoping I can keep to these goals and really make March count after a lack luster February! I’ll likely be posting only 1-2 times a week because as much as I love it, it does take up a lot of time. Plus, I’m picking up a part time job once a week and with all the additional running I’ll be doing, I am going to need to cut back!

Have a great month everyone!!

Until next time… Thea 🙂

If you’d like to read more select “follow” on the bottom tool bar from your PC OR “Like” me on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/rusupermom.

Learning to RUN

I mentioned in my previous 2015 resolution post (2015 Resolutions) my goal to run two half marathons this year. I’ve run two in the past, but I wasn’t always a runner. Actually, I used to HATE running! I loved playing sports and still do, but just going for a run was terribly boring and annoying to me. I would take 20 minutes of sprint drills over a 2 mile run any day. I just DID NOT LIKE TO RUN!

I’ve been active my whole life, playing recreational soccer and softball, and doing various fitness workouts over the years. But after I had my second child I set a goal to train for a half marathon for two reasons. One, to help me lose the baby weight. Because for most of us moms it takes a LOT of work to get it off. And two, to challenge myself to do something I never, EVER thought I would do. I started a 5 month training schedule and I couldn’t believe that I DID IT! It was a really an amazing feeling! It gave me even more respect for my body, especially after pregnancy. I’d ballooned to over 200 lbs during my first two pregnancies! And then look what I had done!

I ran my second half marathon 5 months to the day after having my third child; via c-section I might add. I had a lot less time to train, and it showed. I dragged through the last 3 miles and was literally chanting to myself, “you can do this! you can do this!” And I did. I tell you this not to boast about my accomplishments but to say that your body is so much more capable than you realize! It really and truly is!

Running-Lessons

During all of this I developed a major love for running! It’s become my release, my challenge, and honestly, my sanity. As a person who has always struggled with anxiety there is nothing like a long run to get your head clear and straight again.

There are countless resources on the web regarding training programs. I have taken the information from many sites to make a schedule that works for me. Here’s a link to the training schedule I will be using to prepare for my next half marathon this Spring; FC Half Marathon Training 2015. If there are any locals interested in training I would LOVE to have a running buddy or two!

For anyone interested in running. People have said to me many times, “I’d love to run,” “How do I get started?” and really it’s simple. You just get some sneakers, gym clothes, a sports bra for the ladies, and you just do it! If you’re a total beginner I would recommend checking out the Couch to 5K running program or app at http://www.active.com/mobile/couch-to-5k-app. They start you with short run/long walk intervals and build up to running a full 5K. It’s a great way to get started! And for anyone with doubts, this image below is so very true! Push through to a better you!

voice_in_your_head runner

Until next time…… Thea 🙂

If you’d like to read more select “follow” on the bottom tool bar from your PC OR “Like” me on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/rusupermom.

2015 Resolution- January Recap

It was a busy, fun month trying to keep with these resolution goals! Here’s a recap of what I was able to accomplish this month along with some new helpful tips!

Health and Fitness:

  • Nutrition: I did the free 5 day clean eating challenge twice in January and was able to lose 6lbs! I generally eat pretty healthy but it was great to have my meals planned out for the day with the correct calories already calculated.
  • Fitness: This past week I didn’t get in any runs, but I did 4 circuit strength training workouts. I have a treadmill but I prefer to run outside and it’s just been too cold and slick on the roads. I’m going to be making my training calendar for my first half marathon of the year and will be posting it for anyone interested in seeing how I train, or possibly training as well!
  • HELPFUL FITNESS TIP:If you have Time Warner Cable they offer FREE On Demand workouts on the Sports and Fitness on Demand channel. They are under the Sportskool category. They have Yoga, Pilates, strength training and even kids workouts available!

Connections: I had a GREAT month with my little family and was also able to spend some great time with friends, family and of course my love. Here’s a list of a few things I was able to fit in!

  • Date night for some sushi with my the hubs
  • Our daughter started dance and our son started soccer
  • Movie night with a girlfriend
  • NYC with my sister and cousins
  • 2 family outings to visit with friends
  • And two hikes with the kids at my parents

Organization:

  • 40 bags Challenge- Let’s just say I’m still very behind! I’m doing this to be honest so I’m not going to lie. I may need to complete this within 50-60 days, and I’m ok with that. I just want to keep making progress! Trying to do this challenge along with the clean eating challenge has been difficult to say the least!! Instead of having a goal to fill a certain number of bags I’m going to be making a weekly plan of what area of the house I want to focus on to de-clutter and organize.
  • January Accomplishments:
    • Organized and cleaned all of the kitchen counters and recycling area. (More before and after below)
    • Cleaned out and scrubbed the refrigerator
    • Cleaned out 4 cupboards and 3 drawers. (one of which was the junk drawer)
    • Went through and matched all the socks from my overflowing unmatched sock bin. Threw away the old unmatched socks and left a small bin for the remaining.
    • I shined my sink for the first time in my life. I mean, obviously I clean it but I ended up accidentally shining it in 5 minutes. Check out my helpful tips below to see how!
  • HELPFUL CLEANING TIPS:I can’t tell you how many random cleaners I used to try to get stuff cleaned and sanitized that don’t work very well. But honestly, mother knows best! My mom has told me that baking soda and vinegar is a cheap easy cleaner and vinegar is actually a sanitizer. I’ve used them for a while to sanitize the drains and so on but this week I had a brillo scrubber I was scrubbing it with and it started to shine up really nice. It took me about 3-5 minutes of scrubbing to get the sink sparkling! Here’s a link to some info regarding vinegar uses and cleaning benefits: http://greencleaning.about.com/od/GreenCleaningResources/g/Vinegar.htm. And here is a link regarding how to make all natural vinegar spray cleaners: http://www.theyummylife.com/Natural_Citrus_Vinegar_Cleaners

counter beforeoven counter after

February Goals:

I read a resolution article that recommended making a MONTHLY resolution instead of a yearly one. I LOVE this idea! I’ve found that focusing on weekly goals in fitness has helped me be able to do things I never thought I could do, like run a half marathon and so on. So I’m going to be setting monthly goals for this year to help me keep on track. Details on my goals to come soon!

Happy Monday everyone! Now off to build an obstacle course for the kids on our first snow day of the year!

Until next time…… Thea 🙂