The Red Dress

In four months I will celebrate my 30th birthday. Not turning 29 for a second time, but fully embrace 30. Guns a blazing. Bicep guns that is.

Match 1st I started cutting calories for a 4 month process of shedding the "extra" I added this winter to see the muscles I've built underneath. Yep summer is less then 4 months away people! Let's get moving and shaking on those short shorts legs and sleeveless shirts.

I'm a very goal oriented person. If I have a goal, I will achieve it. So I set the goal of this beautiful red dress for my 30th birthday. I happened to be in a store looking for new boots and came to pass this dress. I stopped and just had to try it on. It fits, sort of. I can zip it up and all, but it just doesn't sit quite right and shows everything. I think I've ever only owned one of two red dresses in my life and I hardly wore them. Likely because red dresses scream "look at me" and I've always been sort of self body conscious. Lifelong body issues; certainly a post for another day. Red dress fits perfectly for this situation since my birthday is on Canada Day. Be color themed :)

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So, I have a motivational dress now. A goal to obtain. And a date to obtain it by. Sounds like most of us at any given moment? A bikini filled vacation booked, a wedding, a reunion and so on.

Going back to school days where we learned goal planning, let's see where I sit.

  • Goal - Smoke show for 30th birthday. Ha ha. I have a weight number, but I don't want to share it. Not because I care what anyone knows I weigh, but because MY bodies 100, 120, 140, 160 will look different then yours, his, hers or anyone else's. So make your own approachable and REALISTIC goal. If I can make a suggestion 0.5 - 1 lbs a week is a realistic goal. Expecting to loose 10 pounds in 2 weeks is not healthy for your body or your mind. Sustainable and steady is the way to go. Remember the tortoise and the hare?
  • End Date - July 1st 2015. My 30th birthday. Pick a date, for whatever reason/event.
  • Motivation and Commitment - The Red Dress. Trying on the dress monthly and taking pictures to see my progress. Keep imagining the red dress on the day I don't feel like the stairmill. Pick a motivational dress, outfit or whatever. A physical thing to look at is something I prefer.
  • Reminder to stay on track - Trying on the dress is a good one, but I like my Project people will be taking weight and pictures bi weekly, measurements monthly.
  • Plan - I have a plan for my caloric deficit (better term for "diet") and when I start adding cardio to my current workout schedule. I know this is where a lot of people struggle. They get lost in the "who, what, when and where" of fitness and nutrition. But even if you plan to workout so many days a week and commitment to one or two specific things nutrition wise, now you have a plan. One that you can measure your commitment.
  • Review and assessment - Reviewing my progress regularly (see weight, pictures and measurements) and assessing where I am in relation to my goal. This one can be hard to do for yourself. It may be hard to see progress because we see ourselves every day, and we judge ourselves on our failures a lot, especially when it comes to weight loss. So maybe your spouse or best friend wants in with you? Check in on each other and review progress. Keep each other motivated. (Tip: Can also be your support person at events and functions when people ask have that extra piece of cake or drink etc). Over the course of 4 months, things will need to change on how I reach my goal. As my body changes, I will need to keep reassessing how to stay on course. I still love that quote "Be stubborn about your goals, flexible about how you reach them"

Now my real "secret" to weight loss. I also bought a dress that I feel good in now. One that flatters my current body and I feel amazing in. With no event in the future exactly, but hey, who doesn't need a fun little black dress? But wait, why buy a dress that you likely might not fit soon? Because you need to love your body now. As cheesy as it sounds some of those fitness clichรฉs are good tips. "I work out because I love my body, not because I hate it". Yep. If we view ourselves in a negative light now, do we think loosing a few pounds will be easier? If we have a little bit of self love and view the process as improving on something that's already great, do you think it might be a more enjoyable process? Be a little self centered and point out the good.

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Let me know your favorite tip for staying on track with your goals below!

Jen