Tuesday, June 16, 2009

100 Day Challenge for Better Health

I'm now on Day 9 of the 100 Day Challenge I started for myself to work on healthy habits. I was inspired a bit by the book 100 Days of Weight Loss: The Secret to Being Successful on Any Diet Plan, a book I'm reading through in chunks. I decided not to follow the book, day by day, because I want to develop all-around good habits. Of course, I want to lose weight along the way too! :) The book has some pretty good ideas, but I'm glad I borrowed it from the library.

So, I'm tracking the following things, with the goal of doing them daily:

1) Weigh in
2) Take a multivitamin
3) Drink 64 oz of water
4) Sleep
5) Floss

I'm recording my weight, as well as hours of sleep, no matter what the numbers are. I've also got a comments section, where I put things like "ate at ____ Restaurant last night" or "meeting after work," in hopes that I can see patterns over time that will help me be healthier.

One of the motivators in this is that I'm training for my first marathon, and being ready means doing all I can to be healthier. The exercise is easy for me to do, and I'm already recording that in a paper log, as well as several online exercise logs. (Wierd, but there's a reason! The paper log goes with me to the gym. The various online exercise logs have different features I like a lot, whether it's tracking shoes, neat graphs, or social networking. I haven't been able to give up one of them yet!)

So far, I have a perfect score in every column for the first 8 days. I'm still working on going across the board for today. Things I've learned so far:

1) Something close to 7 hours of sleep is optimal for me, but I'm not good about getting it.
2) It's easier for me to drink more water during the work week.
3) Flossing any time of day is good. If I floss in the morning, sometimes I floss again at night. All the better, right? I think my dentist and dental hygienist will be pleased, come August, if I keep that up. I've gotten the flossing lecture during my last two visits to the dental hygienist. I haven't had a cavity in ages, but I don't want to tooth ache to interfere with my marathon training!

I'm keeping track of this on a spreadsheet, which I uploaded to Google Docs, so I can add to it wherever I am. I numbered Days 1-100 down the lefthand side, and have the five goals in column headers across the top, along with a comments column.

So far, so good.

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