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2018 Healthy Habits Challenge!

Lark

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I started supplementing with vitamin D drops about a month ago. There is already a noticeable improvement in my moods and anxiety, and I feel like I have a bit more energy.

Still failing in the exercise department and need to dedicate time solely to my chiropractic exercises. The goal is 3 times a week, so it shouldn't be as difficult as I'm making it.

Really?

I been taking it for a while and not noticed anything really, I know why people in my part of the world are recommended it, the lack of sunlight but I notice not much change in mood or anything else. I take chromium picolinate too for diabetes and omega 3 but I'll be honest I'm not sure about any benefit from supplements at all.
 

Peter Deadpan

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Really?

I been taking it for a while and not noticed anything really, I know why people in my part of the world are recommended it, the lack of sunlight but I notice not much change in mood or anything else. I take chromium picolinate too for diabetes and omega 3 but I'll be honest I'm not sure about any benefit from supplements at all.

What form/brand and how much?

I take a high quality liquid D3 at 5,000 iu/day. I started with 10,000 iu/day for a month, but I was tested as low D prior.
 

Peter Deadpan

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Its just a generic stores own brand type I bought in Tescos.

Quality and dose matter a lot. I'd opt for a 3rd party verified D3. If you don't get much sun exposure, take 4,000-5,000 iu a day. If you get some sun exposure, take 2,000 iu a day.

Liquid drops are nice cuz they are cheaper (I think I paid like $20 for a 6 month supply at 5,000 iu a day), plus, some are flavored (mine is minty).
 

Lark

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Quality and dose matter a lot. I'd opt for a 3rd party verified D3. If you don't get much sun exposure, take 4,000-5,000 iu a day. If you get some sun exposure, take 2,000 iu a day.

Liquid drops are nice cuz they are cheaper (I think I paid like $20 for a 6 month supply at 5,000 iu a day), plus, some are flavored (mine is minty).

You may be right because I've noted some changes in my blood sugar, of a positive nature and I think it's largely due to taking the supplements at a different time with a different dosage, I mean, I'm not doing a lot of exercise right now. A few dumb bell churls today but that is all.
 

StrawberryBoots

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I've been over-weight, but never fat. The secret to my success is low carbs, no sugar. I consume no more than 10 carbs a day, and I intermittent fast. I carb-up one day a week. I eat foods with casein protein before bedtime. I workout five days a week, which doesn't include my spontaneous HIT workouts, where I'm hauling heavy animal traps up a precarious flight of attic stairs and crawling around in my attic.on a 2x4 over dead mice and under ductwork. This lifestyle isn't for the weak. True story.
 

StrawberryBoots

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I'm still planning on posting some pictures of myself, but I'm not going to make them public. I'll post them to a private album, which will be accessible to my friends. I'll do it around the Christmas holidays when I feel like playing around online. Right now, I'm about to head out to Ace Hardware to buy a couple of gifts and some more Christmas lights!
 

EJCC

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This is kind of random, but it occurred to me today that I'm basically achieving one of my 2017 health resolutions in 2018, even though I didn't make it a 2018 resolution.

Specifically:
- Run a 10k, and if you manage that, try for a half marathon afterwards

I'm not running a half marathon, but: earlier this year I ran a paved/flat 10k, a few months ago I ran a trail/hilly 10k, and a week from today I'm attempting a trail 10-miler. (Hopefully the fact that I ran 8 miles a few days ago and didn't die is an indicator that I'll live through it. But I'm still concerned lol.) At the end of last year the farthest I'd ever run was 6 miles.

Not bad, given that I hadn't really planned on going in that fitness direction this year.
 

hjgbujhghg

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I have been exercising three times a week for the past month and I already feel a lot better. I lost two pounds while eating the same amount of food I'm used to and I feel a little better in my own body. I have to say... I've started to exercise with a personal trainer and she weighed me and counted the percentage of fat in my body as well as my BMI and BMI really means NOTHING! I look slim and my BMI is around 19 which is normal but still pretty low, but my fat percentage.... uff, ugh... just disgusting. I'm not even going to say what it was but it was extremely high for someone of my body structure and BMI. I need to exercise more and get that fat percentage down and I hope I can make it 'til the end of December.
 

StrawberryBoots

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I'm not running a half marathon, but: earlier this year I ran a paved/flat 10k, a few months ago I ran a trail/hilly 10k, and a week from today I'm attempting a trail 10-miler. (Hopefully the fact that I ran 8 miles a few days ago and didn't die is an indicator that I'll live through it. But I'm still concerned lol.) At the end of last year the farthest I'd ever run was 6 miles.
Not bad, given that I hadn't really planned on going in that fitness direction this year.

Great job, EJCC! Since you've achieved the level of fitness required to trail run 10k and long distance run 8 miles, I think you'll do fine next week. I believe you can accomplish just about anything you're determined to do.

I have been exercising three times a week for the past month and I already feel a lot better.

Great job to you too, Fay! Keep it up!
 

kyuuei

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Gonna wrap up the 2018 year.

I have had a lot of success with some journaling and planner keeping. I have color-coded days with certain goals/activities during those days and it has helped me keep myself well rounded without driving myself insane.

I've developed different layers of health recently too. Kind of like safety nets, with 1 being something I stick to daily and 4 being something I remind myself of occasionally.
1. Intermittent fasting. noon-2200 each day. I mostly keep up with this and it's helped a lot.
2. Substitution cooking. Smart swaps, lower calorie veggies into my carbs, keeping mindful of my veggie and fruit intake, following generally healthier recipes, etc. I do this most of the time that I cook at home.
3. Health-focused days. I eat a Japanese-style diet and take the time to ensure I cook my meals vs just eating cereal or garbage, drink tea and water with each of my meals, and try to meal plan for the week. These are on my pink days on the planner and it's 3x a week, the same days I work out too. Even if some days are busy, or there's some holidays or events, I've been able to stick to 3x a week focusing on healthy eating and habits. They tend to bleed over into more days via leftovers and stuff, which is great, but at a minimum half the week I am eating well.
4. Calorie counts. I check in with this on a pink day a month and sort just look at what I've got in the house and if it's aligning with my values and goals for the calories I need to eat and the ones I'm choosing to buy. I do this on my 'bill pay day' so it's all in the once-a-month bundle.

I also have work out days with stretching, PT, etc. 3x a week on those pink days. This has helped me stay on track immensely. They'll get a little tricky on overtime weeks, but overall I think this is the plan for 2019 I can stick to.

So far, so good really. I'm not super strong, I'm not running here in the winter either, and I am going to make some adjustments to 2019... but in general, I am happy with what I've accomplished this year and making things more streamlined has helped.
 

Lark

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Well, my 2018 wasnt a gold standard for fitness. This disappoints me but I'm looking forward to 2019 and doing better than this year.

I'm hoping that I'll have some more structure than this year but I also appreciate that if I cant find that structure I'm probably going to have to produce it myself.
 

xenaprincess

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I think my challenge at the moment is running on the weekends. Not sure how it would be remotely possible during the week, since it gets dark here so early. Maybe I join a gym near the office, not sure.

I like the concept of keeping a notated journal, or having an eating schedule. Thanks all for the motivation! :)
 
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Went through an extended bulk through the year and am now in the cut part of the cycle. Feeling a lot more agile, have better aerobic capacity and am more energetic being a bit smaller. Have about 6 weeks left of this gentle cut, am enjoying how I am feeling in my body at the moment.

I still struggle with body image, even with my bf% being pretty low. It's hard to get out of the mindset that I should be super small/skinny because I'm an Asian female. In some ways, lifting heavy for the last few years has been very good for me. In other ways, it makes it hard because it's difficult to de-condition myself and people around me have certain ideas about muscular girls. I know how to diet myself down to "Asian girl" size (and have done it before easily), but I also know that it's not sustainable and is terrible for health in general. I made the choice to be different years ago, but it's a constant struggle to feel like my choice is the right one when everyone validates the other. I also feel guilty when I'm doing a cut, because I feel like I'm betraying my commitment to strength training and getting women to direct their focus away from getting skinny/small. It's complicated.

This thread is about "healthy habits", so I wanted to post a bit about a healthy headspace and the way that we talk to ourselves. It is important for our bodies to be healthy, but more than anything, it's important to appreciate that a healthy, full, enjoyable life includes a lot more than the physical aspect. There are also social components, mental components, and spiritual components, all of which interact with each other. I want to work in the space of nutrition and change the culture/perspective surrounding eating/working out, but what "health" means to people is obviously complex and highly individual. At the end of the day, "health" and "quality of life" really depends on priorities/goals, as well as how we see our place in the world - all of which which can change with time. Still trying to figure it out in 2018, but I thought I'd post here anyway. Hopefully things will become clearer in 2019.
 

kyuuei

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Went through an extended bulk through the year and am now in the cut part of the cycle. Feeling a lot more agile, have better aerobic capacity and am more energetic being a bit smaller. Have about 6 weeks left of this gentle cut, am enjoying how I am feeling in my body at the moment.

I still struggle with body image, even with my bf% being pretty low. It's hard to get out of the mindset that I should be super small/skinny because I'm an Asian female. In some ways, lifting heavy for the last few years has been very good for me. In other ways, it makes it hard because it's difficult to de-condition myself and people around me have certain ideas about muscular girls. I know how to diet myself down to "Asian girl" size (and have done it before easily), but I also know that it's not sustainable and is terrible for health in general. I made the choice to be different years ago, but it's a constant struggle to feel like my choice is the right one when everyone validates the other. I also feel guilty when I'm doing a cut, because I feel like I'm betraying my commitment to strength training and getting women to direct their focus away from getting skinny/small. It's complicated.

This thread is about "healthy habits", so I wanted to post a bit about a healthy headspace and the way that we talk to ourselves. It is important for our bodies to be healthy, but more than anything, it's important to appreciate that a healthy, full, enjoyable life includes a lot more than the physical aspect. There are also social components, mental components, and spiritual components, all of which interact with each other. I want to work in the space of nutrition and change the culture/perspective surrounding eating/working out, but what "health" means to people is obviously complex and highly individual. At the end of the day, "health" and "quality of life" really depends on priorities/goals, as well as how we see our place in the world - all of which which can change with time. Still trying to figure it out in 2018, but I thought I'd post here anyway. Hopefully things will become clearer in 2019.

I appreciate the candid post here. It's easy for people to dismiss what society pressures us into.. "just do you!" and "your health comes first!" but, for many, it really doesn't... it takes active resistance, rebellion, and effort to force people to realize that our health and wellbeing comes before ideologies and assumptions.

This reminds me a lot of my mother's struggle with the idea that her being "fat" and "obese" due to her life-saving medications meant she was far healthier than she was 155-165ish lbs and so weak she might have soon died had we done nothing. There aren't many people willing to show off how healthy is really is, or willing to accept that someone can be healthier if they are more overweight than they were once. Americans just do not like fat people (the irony, eh?).

Similarly, I can definitely see it being a cultural norm to shy away from weight lifting. There are definitely people out there supporting you though! Keep up your struggle and effort. You've got safe spaces you're welcome in out there for sure.
 
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I appreciate the candid post here. It's easy for people to dismiss what society pressures us into.. "just do you!" and "your health comes first!" but, for many, it really doesn't... it takes active resistance, rebellion, and effort to force people to realize that our health and wellbeing comes before ideologies and assumptions.

This reminds me a lot of my mother's struggle with the idea that her being "fat" and "obese" due to her life-saving medications meant she was far healthier than she was 155-165ish lbs and so weak she might have soon died had we done nothing. There aren't many people willing to show off how healthy is really is, or willing to accept that someone can be healthier if they are more overweight than they were once. Americans just do not like fat people (the irony, eh?).

Similarly, I can definitely see it being a cultural norm to shy away from weight lifting. There are definitely people out there supporting you though! Keep up your struggle and effort. You've got safe spaces you're welcome in out there for sure.

Yeah, every day it's about re-affirming your values despite what people around you tell you. And to make sure that you're doing things for the right reasons.

There's so much stigma tied up with being a bigger size that needs addressing. It's about the mental short-cuts that people take when talking about "health", and their assumption that (if you're not anorexic and dying) everyone should aspire to be smaller. Truth of the matter is that survival and quality of life (particularly in older people) is a J-shaped curve - people who are slightly to moderately overweight actually are healthier and live longer. But you wouldn't find anyone telling you that because everyone associates being small/skinny/ripped with youth.

Also perhaps because of the circles that I run in (bodybuilder/weightlifting/athletics types), I'm very aware of how the ideals that are being sold to "normals" - that you should get as ripped as possible, for eg, are not realistic. If you're in the "in" and know the details and technicalities of how it's done, your understanding of "health" is immediately redefined. For eg I don't think avoiding having a social life, eating chicken breast and broccoli for 8 weeks in an aggressive cut, lifting your butt off for weeks and then carb-loading the night before, dehydrating and lifting minutes before to get veins/muscles to "pop" for the photo is any definition of health. Or fasting for days and dehydrating for two days to make weight for martial arts. I've seen people (not even pros) do this, there are standard protocols that everyone uses.

I know most people think of it as extreme, but I also get very concerned because these are the images that we are telling people are "healthy". It's what's sold as aspirational, but is in no way sustainable, and encourages eating disorders and body image issues. I've seen the tricks of the trade, and even I find it difficult to fight it off. That's why I'm very careful about how I talk about eating and working out now.. I'm trying to not fall into that trap. Perhaps this discussion isn't really meant for this thread. But it's what I think about when I read about "healthy" habits. There are people around me who are ripped af but I question if the habits that got them to 8%bf are "healthy" by any sane definition. Consequently, I also question if what I am doing is "healthy" when I cut, when I work out 5-6 days a week, when I am bulking or when I am lifting very heavy.
 

SD45T-2

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Yeah, every day it's about re-affirming your values despite what people around you tell you. And to make sure that you're doing things for the right reasons.

There's so much stigma tied up with being a bigger size that needs addressing. It's about the mental short-cuts that people take when talking about "health", and their assumption that (if you're not anorexic and dying) everyone should aspire to be smaller. Truth of the matter is that survival and quality of life (particularly in older people) is a J-shaped curve - people who are slightly to moderately overweight actually are healthier and live longer. But you wouldn't find anyone telling you that because everyone associates being small/skinny/ripped with youth.
I may be too fat but at least my cholesterol and blood pressure are good. :D

Also perhaps because of the circles that I run in (bodybuilder/weightlifting/athletics types), I'm very aware of how the ideals that are being sold to "normals" - that you should get as ripped as possible, for eg, are not realistic. If you're in the "in" and know the details and technicalities of how it's done, your understanding of "health" is immediately redefined. For eg I don't think avoiding having a social life, eating chicken breast and broccoli for 8 weeks in an aggressive cut, lifting your butt off for weeks and then carb-loading the night before, dehydrating and lifting minutes before to get veins/muscles to "pop" for the photo is any definition of health. Or fasting for days and dehydrating for two days to make weight for martial arts. I've seen people (not even pros) do this, there are standard protocols that everyone uses.
 

Snow as White

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Day 45 into eating healthier.

Some habits have fallen by the wayside but I’ve maintained my healthy eating and exercising goals.

A week ago I found a free 30 day workout program. Each day I get a 15 min video. So I’ve done 6/7 days so far. I needed a rest one day because everyone around me is sick and I didn’t want to get sick.

Feeling really good. More energy. I can move better now. Clothes are looser.

My goal is to fit into my little black dress for the upcoming wedding in September. Should achieve it. But honestly if I don’t I just want to be healthier.
 

NatureChaser

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My goal is to give up refined sugar. I watched the video about progressive extremism which you choose foods/drinks to eliminate for the rest of your life, and I'm trying to do it. It has to be something you wouldn't miss much and you have to start small. I'm just started doing it for a few months so I've just eliminated one thing, non-mint candies of any kind. When I'm ready I'm gonna eliminate another sugary food/drink and I'll keep doing it until I give up refined sugar for life.
 

Snow as White

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two months down. felt impossible january 1 and yet here we are through the looking glass.

clothes are a LOT looser and I feel... smaller? Idk, just a sensation of my body feeling less terrible. Clothes I bought before Xmas are definitely a size too large now. I don't want to waste the money so I think I'll try and figure out how to alter the clothes or ask my bf's mom to help.

March goals:
I broke down and ordered meals from a meal plan online, Daily Harvest. A bit pricy but I figured out I could try it out and incorporate the cost as my cost for a week of food. To supplement these smoothies I will have oatmeal and eggs and veggies... budget options that are still healthy.

My plan for this month is to step it up a notch and aim for 75% of my meals to be vegan and 25% to contain eggs and lean meats.

Also going to step up my workouts and start walking with weights and doing lunges and squats more. Since my local park features LARPers I feel like I won't look too ridiculous.
 
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