Mini Goals…or Don’t Quit Now

scaleHow are you all doing on your New Years’ resolutions? I’ve lost 4 1/2 pounds in three weeks. While I wish it was more, I’m doing everything right. Writing everything down that I eat. Sticking to 1200 calories per day. And I’ve started exercising at least five days per week.

disneyworldCould I maintain this the entire trip to that magic number on the scale that says I am officially where I want to be, weight-wise? Heck no! I can’t think of the long haul or I’ll get so discouraged I’ll completely bail. But can I do this for a few months? Say… until our trip to Disney World in April? Absolutely.

walkingdvdOne of the things I’m doing is a walking DVD that I ordered. Leslie Sansone’s Walking Off The Pounds. I enjoy my drags through the neighborhood with the dog (she sure keeps my heartrate up!) but the weather in Seattle rarely cooperates. So I figured I’d get this easy peasy workout DVD and feel like I’m getting my exercise in, while taking it easy. Wrong! This DVD kicks my butt! And it’s LONG. 45 minutes to do the entire three miles. The first time I did it, I was swearing at the screen, telling Leslie how mean she was. But I did it. Longest workout I’ve ever done. And it didn’t kill me. So I did it again. And again. It’s kind of addictive.

Some days I don’t feel like working out. It’s rainy outside and that just gives me a terrible case of the blahs. But I’ve found that if I get into my workout gear and lace up my sneakers, I WANT to keep going. I’m motivated. And thinking about those calories I’ll burn is pretty great too.

I’m also tracking steps and workouts with my Microsoft Band. This uploads automatically to My Fitness Pal, where I log all my food. Have I mentioned how much I love technology and how my gadgets talk to each other? Awesome!

So I’m plugging along. Losing slowly, but knowing that’s the smart way to do it. Picturing my end goal: the new shorts I’ll have to buy for Disney World, because my old ones will be too big. 😉 And knowing that I’ve gotten in shape for a vacation that is 99% walking around the theme parks.

Did you know walking just the perimeter of the Magic Kingdom is two miles?

Did you know walking just the perimeter of the Magic Kingdom is two miles?

Next up: The Can Do 5k at the end of April. I think I have both kids on board to run this one with me. Motivation=success 😀

What mini goals are you working on? Got any tips on keeping it successful?

New Year, New Me

2016-newyears-resolutionsLast year I only made one resolution – to review every book that I read (as long as I could give it at least three stars). That was, by far, the easiest (and most enjoyable) resolution to keep. But I went too easy on myself. I let diet and exercise fall by the wayside and I gained back ten pounds that I swore I would never see again. I went right back into my old patterns of eating – junk food, stress-eating, eating when I wasn’t even hungry just because it was there.

I set writing goals last year that I did not meet. I told myself I would write a Scallop Shores Christmas anthology. Every couple I’d previously introduced would have their own holiday story. I had it all planned out and even wrote the synopsis and submitted it to my publisher. They turned it down: Readers don’t want to hear about the couples that already got their happily-ever-after, they told me. I disagreed. 2015 was going to be the year I broke into self-publishing. Um… or not.

completedI signed up for the Goodreads reading challenge for 2015 and kicked ass! – I committed to reading 50 books last year and I read 66. (All that time I was supposed to be writing/self-publishing? Hmm) I refuse to regret a minute of that reading time. I can always find writing time if I’m truly honest with myself. But reading time… that’s just for me.

Ah, 2016… I’ve got big plans for you. And blog posts are permanent, right? So if I commit to it here, I have to take ownership. Okay, here goes (for the personal goals):new_year_s_resolutions

  1. Get down to (adjusted) goal weight. (Sorry, folks – even my husband doesn’t know what that magic number is.)
  2. Exercise often – every day if possible. We’re in the market for an elliptical machine. Yay! My goal is to get up in the morning, earn my coffee by doing thirty minutes on the elliptical (or running once the weather gets better) and not have to think about it the rest of the day.
  3. Organize! I have big plans for the holiday clutter in the hall closet. I also have whole bookshelves and other shelving units that are stuffed with books, toys and puzzles that the kids haven’t used in YEARS. Time to purge!
  4. Stress less, mellow more. I have triggers (the family knows what they are) that send my blood pressure through the roof. Manage the triggers, the stress disappears. Or at least that’s what I’m telling myself.
  5. Try out some of the recipes I’ve pinned to my Pinterest board. A lot of those are really healthy and we could be missing out on some yummy dinners.
  6. Finish the downstairs! We need a spot for that new elliptical and I want my office space back.
  7. Continue to explore the Pacific Northwest with the family. Last year we discovered Mt. Rainier, Ocean Shores and Suncadia in Cle Elum. This year we would love to finally tackle Mt. St. Helens and get up to Vancouver and Victoria.
And now for the writing goals:goals11111
1.  Write at least one blog post per week. If I keep it to something I enjoy talking about, it won’t seem like such a chore, right? Come on, guys… hold me to this one.
2.  Update my website. And by this I mean, find help from someone more knowledgeable than me. My blog posts should NOT be the front page.
3.  Finish the first of my fairy trilogy before shopping the series idea around.
4.  Try like hell to finish the other two books before Dec. 31st. Even if they aren’t 100% polished, get those words out!
5.  Seek representation. I’ve got enough of a backlist that I think an agent will see I’m serious about this writing gig.
6.  Market the Scallop Shores series in Maine, through as many avenues as possible. I have some leads in York and Bar Harbor. (Cross your fingers for me.)
7.  Get out in front of the readers more, and out of my writing cave. Search out reader events and book signings to join.
How about you? Any really unusual resolutions to tackle in 2016? Something that you’ve really, really been meaning to do and are finally ready to see through to completion? I would love to know. Hey, we’re all in this together, right?