Weekly Chase: Progress to My Goals

Crazy how another week has gone by! I love how the weather seems to be getting warmer during the day, especially since the weekend was super warm outside. I’m a summer baby, so naturally the clouds seem to be my enemy and the sun my best friend. For the most part at least, I would prefer to always have a little shady spot to rest under. I’m not too crazy where I’m just up to lay in the hot, blazing sun for hours on end! I just like warmth. Continue reading

What is a Blog Hop?

When I first had the thought of starting a blog I spent quite some time debating about actually doing it. I told myself more of all the reasons I shouldn’t start a blog rather than all the possibilities that it might present. I was anxious writing my About Me page, and even more hesitant when I finally signed up on WordPress.com. Continue reading

Goal Chasing Update

Through my own journey in personal development I’ve realized the importance of goal setting, something I am still working the kinks out to make it work for me but I feel that just thinking about goals isn’t enough. At least in my case I’d set goals and unless they were really close to my heart I never really pursued them. Even those that did get me excited and I felt more passionate about, I often found myself talking myself down and redefining them as unreachable dreams. Yet, as I get older I realize how precious the time I have on this Earth is, and how temporary our time is. So I’ve decided to really commit to learning and improving my goal setting habits so that my goals are not dreams but my reality.

One of the big must dos in goal setting I’ve seen again and again is to not only make SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely) goals but to WRITE THEM DOWN. 

Weekly Check-In

So here is my weekly check-in via the Weekly Chase to keep myself accountable and in my mind. I will be doing this weekly to make sure I am taking continuous steps towards these goals and not forgetting what’s important to me.

  1. Pay off my student loans of $10K by June
    1. Excellent progress for this goal as despite spending a bit over my January budget I was able to part with some extra money saved up and pay off $3,000 for the first month of 2016. In overcoming my debt I am following Dave Ramsey’s method from Total Money Makeover. So aside from my $1000 for savings every other dollar goes toward paying off my debts before saving. After all none of that money is really mine no matter how much I save when I have debts over my head!
  2. Improve my running to be able to run a 30 minute or less 5k and 10 minute mile
    1. I haven’t gotten much cardio in aside from HIT routines, but am starting up my 5k training program this week! And hoping to throw in some hikes, spin classes, and other cardio workouts.
  3. Grow and build my blog by blogging 3x a week consistently
    1. Last week was a good week for blogging! Thank you to all who take the time to stop and leave thoughtful comments or who just give my content a read! I haven’t had much time to plan this week, but hope to still stay on top of my 3x a week goal.
  4. Build strength through workouts and be able to do a full push-up and pull-up
    1. I’ve been successfully working out more consistently lately, especially in the mornings making sure to get in routines that incorporate upper body.
  5. Help others on their fitness journey through accountability groups and support
    1. I’m hosting a year long FREE accountability group for those who want to work on their own health and fitness. I check-in daily with my personal workouts, progress, and motivation. If you want some accountability for fitness feel free to email me at CurlyCaroline27@gmail.com
  6. Learn new skills starting with studying Spanish
    1. I’ve had quite a few people recommend Duolingo for learning a new language, so I have started to set a goal of visiting the app daily. I am also planning to head to the public library when I have time and check out some audiobooks for learning spanish to listen to while I drive.
  7. Maintain a clutter-free life by de-cluttering/cleaning 2x a month
    1. I was able to clear out a few items last week, although they are still sitting in a bag waiting to be hauled out to my local Goodwill!
  8. Develop a routine/schedule to find more time for things I enjoy
    1. I’ve adopted a daily to-do list so far, and need to focus on allocating specific times to focus on getting things done.
  9. Explore outdoor activities and fun workouts classes weekly
    1. I wasn’t able to do any outdoor activities last week, with the rain. I had planned to go to spin class but missed twice because I sadly mixed up the times. BUT! I did get to go bowling TWICE which was definitely fun. I’m not a pro or super great, but I think I’ve gotten quite good compared to my bowling (or lack of) skills when I first started to bowl!
  10. Build my cooking skills by trying a new recipe each week
    1. This was actually a hard goal to chase this week, as our kitchen is being renovated slightly so it’s been off limits mostly. Plus, I’m actually quite scared of experimenting with food for fear of making something wrong or not liking it and ending up wasting food.

Current Goals:

I mentioned before that goals change, and mine are no different. For the most part my goals are almost the same as last week minus one alteration of the last goal.

  1. Pay off my student loans of (now!) $7K by June
  2. Improve my running to be able to run a 30 minute or less 5k and 10 minute mile
  3. Grow and build my blog by blogging 3x a week consistently
  4. Build strength through workouts and be able to do a full push-up and pull-up
  5. Help others on their fitness journey through monthly accountability groups
  6. Learn new skills starting with studying Spanish
  7. Maintain a clutter-free life by decluttering/cleaning 2x a month
  8. Develop a routine/schedule to find more time for things I enjoy
  9. Explore outdoor activities and fun workouts classes weekly
  10. Focus on clean eating w/ weekly meal prepping and planning

There’s a lot of debate on how to set goals, and honestly I think its just based on personal preference whether you make them weekly, monthly, or yearly. Some people have short-term goals and others have long-term goals that can be set to reach even farther than a year. I really think a mixture of all these is great!

I’ve tried daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly goals and have struggled in being overwhelmed by the slow progress. Patience is much needed in working towards your goals because even with a great amount of effort it can be a slow process. At the moment I’m focusing on the process and successive steps I can take to reaching my goal. Focusing on the small victories along the way really help me feel accomplished and feeling like my goals are possible. For example, my goal of paying off my loans by June. I could focus on the end goal and see the balance as daunting and never decreasing or I can focus on the progress I am making by sticking to a monthly budget, which frees up money to go towards my debt. I can focus on my inability to do a push-up or pull-up all the way or I can add on more upper body workouts to my rotation and feel good about increasing the weight I use. Even though I still can’t do a pull-up unassisted at least I know that focusing on building my upper body strength is bringing me closer to this goal of mine.

Link Ups: Weekly Chase via Road Runner Girl and Weekly Wrap via MissSippiPiddlin

From Couch to …. My Reveiw of C25K

Welcome to my weekly Thursday Tryouts link-up! A weekly post I share with you my thoughts and experience of things I’ve tried out. Whether you had a positive or not so great experience, feel free to link up your own blog posts of tryout shares by adding your link to the link-up button at the end of this post. Plus don’t forget to mention the link-up in your blog post and link back her Now on to my topic for today!! Continue reading

Let’s Inspire Optimism!

Today I’m linking up with Deb Runs for Wednesday Word, a fun link-up any blogger can join in on where we share our thoughts on the “word of the day.” I think today’s word, optimism, is perfect to bring into perspective with the nearing end of the first month of 2016.

One of the main things I want to focus on in my blog is goals and goal setting. I admit I’m no expert in this field, but that’s one of the main reasons I’ve decided to share on this topic! I feel that everyone should have an idea of where and what they want in life, as well as a plan of action and an optimistic mind to do so. I honestly have faith and believe that anyone can change their lives and create the life they want for themselves. This is precisely what I am committing to doing! So I hope in sharing my journey I inspire others to do so too, to forget thinking of them as too ordinary and incapable because I too have had those feelings. We don’t have to be millionaires, celebrities, or highly celebrated individuals to live life by our own definition of greatness.

A whole month of the New Year has come and gone and many people will begin to contemplate over what they have achieved or accomplished over the past month. It is easy to fall victim to feelings of inadequacy or become discouraged when one realizes the goals or resolutions they excitedly created at the beginning of the year have gone neglected or not quite progressed as hoped. I’ve realized that we have to constantly alter our methods and sometimes even our goals in order to achieve the things we want in life. Something that takes effort, time, and a great deal of optimism!

The most important step in achieving a goal in my opinion is just to be positive about your abilities and begin. Accept that you might not find the success you want instantly and might let yourself down at times. This is something I struggled with especially with the fitness challenges I always find myself attempting. In the end I would find myself feeling pressured to perform to every detail and became overwhelmed, ultimately giving up completely.

I finally got tired of feeling like I was always failing and have accepted that my journey will not be perfect. I want to be real and honest with myself, so I don’t let myself fall into an unrealistic image of success I will not find. So at the beginning of the year, I happily reviewed the pain, the soreness, the guilt, the mistakes, and everything else that I would find ahead of me and forgave myself at the start. I’ve chosen optimism in aiming for my goals because with a positive mind I’m able to look at the hardships I might face and see them as challenges that will only make me stronger. I’m able to take control of the one thing we are able to take control of, our minds and choices.

We must all find optimism even when we feel there is none. I’ve struggled immensely with depression, feelings of inadequacy, anger, loneliness, hopelessness. Sometimes I feel so drained at the end of the day or with where I am in life that I just sigh and begin to think of all the things I wish were different. Yet, focusing my energy on what I don’t have and thinking negatively really doesn’t do anything for me but create a bigger, deeper hole for myself. I am not perfect and I don’t ever expect to have no frustration or sadness in things that might befall on me, but I have committed to always finding something positive in times of despair and forgiving myself when needed. I feel in doing this I will allow myself to see the good that does surround me and take the responsibility in acting on those that I wish to change.

What thoughts do you struggle with?
How do you stay optimistic even in a not so positive situation?

Share some optimism with me! Name one thing that you have to be proud, happy, or thankful for!

“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” ― Winston S. Churchill

 

Weekly Chase: A New Week, New Goals

Happy Monday all! I want to first off say thank you to any returning readers for staying with me despite my blogging break. I truly appreciate your return and support of my blog!

Return is something I hope I won’t have to do again for this blog, as I plan on avoiding further neglecting of its potential by committing to blogging more frequently. Key to that is getting organized, making time, and planning ahead. These habits are something I’ve been trying to adopt in all aspects of my life; otherwise I feel I won’t have time for anything!

The New Year has already been going by so quickly. In a week we will have already lived through one month of 2016! I feel like we only just said hello a day ago, but in reality it’s been 25 days ago!

New years are funny. They are often filled with overwhelming hope for new beginnings, habits, and successes. They are also filled with Continue reading

2016 Goal Setting for the New Year

HAPPY NEW YEAR ALL!

I know I have neglected my blog for quite some time now. I am so excited to get back into it and connecting again with all of you! It’s no secret that with the coming of the New Year many begin to feel a sense of renewal and a fire of determination in making changes! I am no different, and expect a great many things from and for myself in 2016.happy new year!

Last year I came faced with a great many realities and changes in my life. I began to realize that change is always possible and you don’t need to wait for a countdown for it to happen. Another truth I feel I gained from 2015
was that I am responsible for what or where I find myself. Even when bad or sad things occur and we might feel out of control, we have control. How? By being able to control our reaction, and steering where our lives may lead next. Continue reading

Thursday Tryouts: The New Coming to My Life

I know I’ve been quite quiet as of late! I promise I will be back more frequently soon! I haven’t had much time to sit down and type out the ideas I’ve had for the blog lately. This is mostly due to moving!

I had originally thought I had until mid-December but instead I had to get all the bins out the door by today actually! Plus the BIG yard sale I’ve been decluttering for is also this weekend! So there has been a lot of organizing of boxes and packing them up to make it easier to put out items on the day of the sale based on categories and pricing. This allows me to set-up more quickly and avoids missing the potential sales that can come from the early birds!

Anyways! I wanted to make sure to at least not miss an entire week of blogging, especially my Thursday Tryouts! Sadly I don’t have a full detailed post on a new try-out, but here are some new things in my life.

New this week:

  • I moved! Originally I was living with my dad, who just bought a house with his girlfriend. YAY for them! I had planned to move out with them, but after some thought and realization I was always at my boyfriend’s house anyways I am now officially moved into his bedroom with him!
  • I got an internship! If you follow my Weekly Chase posts (I’ll be back at this next week by the way!) you know that one of my weekly goals has been to be active in my job hunting. This has been something I’ve been really reluctant at getting too and since I’ve been offered full-time at my current position I actually decided to postpone my job search. However, I got an e-mail regarding a position I think would be great experience in exactly what I desire as a career path! Although it is an unpaid intern position I have been offered the position and have excitedly accepted! I’ll be doing both full-time employment and part-time internship.
  • I’m working out! Another Weekly Chase goal I’ve been aiming at! I have been working out for awhile now, but not as consistently as I’ve wanted. So this week I actually started PIYO and have a really good feeling about the program!
  • I ran a virtual 5k! I’m actually signed up for the Cupcake Day Run on December 15, which I had planned to be my first virtual 5k. Then I saw Eat2SaveYourLife’s blog post about the Gratitude 5k to be held on Thanksgiving! So I decided to jump on that one and stay healthy on the holiday.
  • I won a giveaway! Thanks to Amber over at Eat2SaveYourLife who not only made the virtual 5k on Thanksgiving with a great Gratitude bib idea. She also, along with her co-hosts and sponsors, hosted a giveaway for the virtual 5k and guess what!? I WON! I was so grateful, excited, and honored somehow! I’ll be getting a pair of France 2 sunglasses (I see a Thursday Tryout post in the future!)

Thanks all for stopping by the blog today! Luckily the sun goes down earlier this time around so the yard sale will have to be packed on up by 5 p.m. leaving plenty of time for me to get some writing done to get back on track with the blog for next week.

Feel free to share your tryout posts, whether you wrote them on Thursday or not! I would prefer them to be at least from this week, and please mention the link-up and your host (me♥) on your blog post.

#ThursdayTryouts

What is something new from your week?
Have you done a virtual 5k or won a giveaway before?

Hydrate With Plant Nanny

One of the habits I’ve been trying to adopt for awhile now and feel I have finally gotten a hold over is drinking enough water throughout my day. I’ve never really been a big fan of water. It always tasted so bland to me, and I never enjoyed that empty taste unless I was really thirsty or probably dehydrated. I always thought people who drank water with meals were boring. Why would I want to ruin my tasteful foods with the non-tasting water! I only drank water at restaurants when I didn’t want to spend more money on a beverage.

I don’t even think I was ever really sure how much was enough. It wasn’t until I started to get into fitness that I started to look up these nutritional facts and realized that hydration was vital to a healthy body. So I started reading more about water intake and almost every fitness blogger I enjoyed following stated that the recommended intake of water was half your body weight in ounces.

GASP! Half my weight in ounces sounded like a lot! Especially because I quickly realized that I barely drank any water! I mean literally some days I can almost say that I didn’t have a cup of water for the whole day. Maybe at times I even managed to drink NO water all day! I usually always opted for soda and juice. It’s not like I never drank water, sometimes I even craved water. Despite it being a bland drink for me, at times it was often refreshing. Mostly this occurred on hot days, so perhaps I was just dehydrated. Oops!

When I started exercising more I started to drink more water because I knew it was good for me in my fitness progress. I would drink before, during, and especially after working out. Still though I was not drinking enough water! So I educated myself to motivate myself. I looked up the benefits of water. I even seriously looked up how to increase my water intake. This might sound silly. I mean all I had to do was drink more water! I knew that, but the task seemed so complex and difficult to me at the start.

So I looked it up to see how other people could drink so many ounces in a day. I found myself becoming that “boring” person I’d roll my eyes to at the dinner table, opting for water with meals and not only when I didn’t have extra money to spend. I finally started using one of the reusable bottles that had been untouched around the house. I made sure to fill it everyday before I left to school and drink it on the way. Luckily my university had several water refill stations so I used those during school.

I was drinking more water everyday now, but how much I wasn’t really keeping track of. I had seen many girls on Instagram posting about water tracking apps they were using. I tried a few but none of them stuck until I found Plant Nanny. I was immediately attracted to this app. because of the cuteness!

Tamagotchi-e1435771477560
Who remembers Tamagotchi!?

You get to choose from several different plant types and plot them in a pot. Once planted you “feed” your plant daily by feeding your body with water. If you consistently drink adequate amounts of water your plant will grow until it’s big enough to be placed in “your garden.” Then you get to start over with a new type of plant! This definitely brought me back to my days of playing Tamagotchi!

But beware as if you neglect your water intake and don’t “feed” your plant it will wilt and eventually die. This actually happens rapidly in a day or two of inadequate water intake! Really puts in perspective how important drinking water daily is for you!12305842_1008090262547461_1212970055_n

Plant Nanny really helped me start up my water intake habit. The app even has a feature to set reminders to tell you your plant is thirsty if you don’t drink water for a certain duration of time. I think this was a great try out and I am glad to have found the app. I think it can be a fun, engaging, and effective way to help you develop good water drinking habits.

12282795_1008089159214238_1728857340_n

Do you drink enough water daily?

Does half your body weight in ounces of water sound excessive to you?
How do you keep track of your water intake?

Join the link-up! Click the link below to add or view other bloggers’ Thursday Tryouts!

#ThursdayTryouts
 

 

A Bountiful of Decisions: Gratitude & Sacrifice

Bountiful

It’s true the holidays are often bountiful in the aspect of giving generously and realizing all the things (family, friends, life, etc) to be thankful for. I’ve never been too big a fan of Thanksgiving though. We never really made a big deal of it as a family and since becoming vegetarian and not really being a whiz in the kitchen to create delicious veggie alternatives I haven’t really found joy in the holiday.

Recently I’ve adopted the habit of gratitude and practice giving thanks for all that I have daily. Something I feel many people need to do more of. Of course I still have my dreams and desires, but Continue reading