Friday, December 9, 2011

A New Challenge

I love a good challenge - it motivates me, holds me accountable, even pushes me beyond my limits!  This is the time of year when many people make New Year's Resolutions.  I prefer to call it a challenge.  This past year, I challenged myself to stop drinking diet soda.  As of today, I have been soda-free since January 1st!  About 2 months ago, I even decided to get off artificial sweetener and quit cold turkey.  When I put my mind to something, I intend to succeed!

In October 2006, my husband and 2 boys took a trip to Disneyworld.  We returned home with memories and lots of pictures.  It was seeing myself in these pictures that made me realize I had put on a little weight.  I had always been just average size - not really watching what I ate or working out.  It seemed that since I hit 30, my body was changing even though my lifestyle remained the same.  I decided that it was time to start paying attention to what I ate.  I began counting my calories and doing some workout videos at home.  I began to lose a few pounds over the next 3 months.  The following February, I joined Women Run Arkansas, which is an organization that helps women learn to run using a run/walk ratio.  It was so inspiring and effective - I ran my first 5K in May of that year, and I haven't stopped running since.  I have run in dozens of 5K's, several 10K's and 2 half marathons.  Running is an outlet for me - it is where I can be with just me - no one is bugging me or asking for something or demanding my time!!

Since that October in 2006, I have lost 25 lbs and kept it off.  One might say that I am a little obsessed with my weight and what I eat.  I still count my daily calories and run/workout 5-6 days per week.  Sometimes I wish I was a little less obsessive compulsive, but deep down I enjoy the routine and structure that it provides. 

Another hobby that I have is baking.  I love to make sweet creations of scrumptiousness.  Seeing other people enjoy what I have made is even more of a rush than enjoying it myself!  I have received comments from people wondering how I stay thin when I am constantly around desserts.  The secret is I rarely eat it.  Not that I don't like it - because I LOVE sweets!  I could live off of 2 courses - bread and dessert - and be perfectly content!!  It just doesn't fit into my daily calorie planner.

This is where my blog comes in.  I recently came upon a list of National Dessert Days.  I began to think about incorporating this list into my everyday life and enjoying a little something sweet each and every day.  I then thought about journaling my experience and ultimately decided to blog and share this with my friends and family.

This is my challenge for 2012:  I will work my way through the list of National Dessert Days and indulge in the sweet of the day.  There isn't a dessert for every day of the year, so I will choose something else for those days.  I would love to be able to have all homemade goodies, but realistically I know that won't happen every day.  Sometimes I will share my recipes with you, or maybe just the experience I had or what new dessert I was able to try. 

Beginning January 1, 2012, I invite you to join me on this journey as I balance my desire to branch out and enjoy life's dessert with my calorie counting obsessive compulsive personality!!