At the beginning of January I posted about my goal to drop 5 pounds by the end of the month and offered to pay my friend Tom $300 if I didn’t reach it.
Today is February 1st and the final number is… down 4.4 pounds. Whomp whomp. The “good” news is that Tom fell short of his goal as well and because I was close, we’re just going call it even.
For February, I’m going to do something similar but iterate on the rules because the ones outlined above have some weaknesses:
- First, it’s all or nothing. Being down 4.9 pounds or up 10 pounds is the same if the bet says if you don’t drop 5 you lose.
- Second, my weight tends to fluctuate each day to day, so while I was in the 186s most of last week, I happen to weigh in above 188 today.
- Third, while not losing money is a powerful incentive, it would be nice if there was the potential to win money as well.
With these in mind, here’s my bet with Tom for February:
My goal is to get to 184 pounds (down 4.6 pounds from this morning). For the last week of the month, I’ll weigh in each morning then we’ll use an average so that the day to day fluctuations even out. For every pound I’m over 184, I’ll pay Tom $50. For every pound under 184, he’ll pay me $50. If I’m successful, that will put me down 9 pounds from the beginning of the year.
Reflecting on January
I’ve been experimenting with a lot of lifestyle and diet changes over the last few weeks.
What went well
- I’ve checked in on the Way of Life app every day since I started tracking on January 10th. The accountability it provides definitely helps me build good habits and avoid bad ones.
- Most days I eat a light breakfast (scrambled eggs + guac) + a salad for lunch. I think a big factor in my weight loss in January was due to this.
What went alright
- I started stretching and medidating several times a week. Ideally I’d like to do it once a day, but I’ve been having trouble fitting it in. At the beginning of January I tried waking up an hour early to start the day off with these and other healthy habits, but I’m not a morning person so it didn’t last. For the second half of the month I tried doing it before I went to sleep which works OK, but when I’m tired staying up an extra 20-30 minutes to stretch and meditate isn’t that appealing. For February, I’m going to try taking some time around lunch to stretch, meditate, eat a salad, and watching a TED talk (a new daily habit I’m starting) which should let me check off 4 of my daily habits in less than an hour.
- I mostly avoided sugary drinks, but still average about 2/week.
What went poorly
- I noticed that when I eat out I tend to use it as an excuse to eat whatever I want by telling myself “I eat well most days, I’ll treat myself today”. Going forward, I’m going to try to grab a salad whenever I eat out (I’m adding a “Eating a Salad When Eating Out” to my Way of Life habit list).
- Between travel and a cold the last week of the month, I only wound up working out about twice per week, short of my goal of 3-4 times per week.
- I started tracking “Eating Sweets” about a week ago and realized that I wind up eating something sugary most days (ice cream after dinner, etc). This is something I’d like to cut down on in the future.
I’m happy with the progress I made in January and am looking forward to continuing to build healthier habits going forward. Writing about it here helps keep me accountable and lets me share what I’m learning so thank you for reading :). If you have any recommendations that might help, don’t hesitate to drop me a note.