Happy Holidays Animated GreetingPosted by Roger,  a contributor to this blog.

It is that time of year again. For many of us this can be a difficult time as there are so many temptations. There is the temptation to skip workouts because we are just so busy and tired. There is the temptation to overeat because, dang it, everything looks and smells so good. What’s a guy to do?

What a guy does is set some goals and try his best to stick to them.

On November 10, 2011, I visited my doctor for my annual physical. At that time I was at a pretty low point and had gained some weight. My doctor didn’t seem to be overly concerned. He knew I was going through a hard time and that I also knew what to do to lose the weight. However, that was too easy an out for me.  I told the doctor I wanted him to give me a goal weight. I wanted to know where he wanted me to be. I needed that sense of accountability that Dustin has advocated. After some discussion, we agreed upon a weight loss of 22 lbs by my next physical. That would be a starting goal and I would have a year to do it. That definitely sounded like something I could do. All I had to do was get through the holidays and then get to work after.

So I started doing a little here and there but not much. I figured I had a whole year. Then something happened that kicked started my weight loss. One morning in bootcamp we had to use the treadmills. Not one of my favorite things to do, by the way. While I was taking my turn running, Dustin came up and asked me it the speed was good. That may not seem like much, but the speed was way below where I would have previously run. In the past if I had been at that speed Dustin would have cranked me up. Oh my gosh, I thought. I must really look heavy if this looks like an appropriate speed. At what was worse, it was a challenging speed. Ok, I decided, it was time to get to work. So, that Saturday, I took my son to the movies. We went to see Jack and Jill. Critics hated it, but my son and I thought it was funny and entertaining. However, I digress. At the movie I had some popcorn and a soda. I told myself to enjoy that soda because that was going to be my last.

With that, right before the holiday season began, I jumped in. People reminded me that this was probably not the best time to start but, hey, I had made enough excuses. First, and most importantly, I gave up the soda. I was drinking much too much so I just went cold turkey. I didn’t allow any because I know myself. I also gave up candy and other sugary snacks. That was much easier. I like chocolate but I don’t need it all the time. I wasn’t giving that up totally, just limiting myself. With everything else, I just really started watching portions and try to stay away from fast food.

Everything has gone well so far. I ate modestly at Thanksgiving. My family Christmas party was a challenge. I did fine with the dinner but the desserts…not so much. I planned ahead on this though and stayed away from sugar for days so that I could enjoy the dessert table. One of my bigger challenges has been my favorite Christmas cookies. I have a weakness for a certain type of Christmas cookie and bought a pack when I saw them in the store. My sister also saw them in the store and bought me two packs. She knows I sometimes have a hard time finding them so she wanted to make sure I had them this year. Sisters. You gotta love them and I have two of the best. Even as old as I am now, they are always looking out for me. Oops. Off the subject again. I’ve managed to eat the cookies sparingly. The good news is, even with all the temptations, I only need to lose 6 more pounds to meet the initial goal weight set forth by me and my doctor.

I’ve done pretty well with the exercise too. I still get in 3-4 workouts a week and plan on adding one more day once the holidays are over.

Finally, to help me, I have a little altered Christmas carol that I wrote that might help me watch myself at the next dessert table.

Watch Me Grow!

Oh the holiday food is frightful,
But the smell is so delightful
I’m trying to resist, but no
Watch Me Grow! Watch Me Grow! Watch Me Grow!

My fork shows no sign of stopping,
And my pants, their button’s popping,
My metabolism seems oh so slow,
Watch Me Grow! Watch Me Grow! Watch Me Grow!

When I’ve finally had enough,
Are my eyes feeling ever so tired!
I feel I could sleep, but tough
A jolt of caffeine, I’ll be wired!

My appetite is subsiding,
Walk away, my dear, I’m trying
Because unless from that table I go,
Watch Me Grow! Watch Me Grow! Watch Me Grow!

If you missed my inspiring Christmas Carols from last year, you can check them out here.

Hope you have a wonderful holiday season.