June 03, 2013

Pushin' It: June Goal Support Post & Giveaway


It's my favorite post of the month, because all the good stuff comes in the comments!

So we'll have the usual chance to check in with what people are working on and how everyone is doing with their goals, as well as find out who won last month's giveaway. And we have a new giveaway to announce as well.

As is the custom with these monthly goal posts, we encourage people to reply to each other's comments and offer support, advice, thoughts, encouragement or whatever.  And to check back to continue conversations or offer progress reports if feeling so inclined.

The theme this month is: Pushin' It! Which coincidentally...

...has absolutely NOTHING to do with the giveaway prize.

That happens to be an assortment of products provided by Now Foods, plus an unclaimed pair of Koss headphones .

UPDATE: What Sort of Now Food Products Are We Talking About?

So, it took a while to work out the details, sorry.

My original suggestion for a gigantic gift certificate for absolutely anything Now Foods carries... turned out not to be entirely practical.  And their idea of a random grab bag of stuff they're featuring seemed too likely to me to be wasteful, as most likely there might be something in there the winner would have no interest in or be allergic to or whatever.

So what we've landed on is: up to $50 worth of product the winner can choose from the following possibilities:


Raw Energy Mix (blend of raisins, pecans, pumpkin seeds, almonds and cashews); Whey Protein Isolate (blends easily in water or milk); Eve Women’s Multiple Vitamins (includes cranberry, alpha lipoic acid and CoQ10 and superfruits) or  Slender Sticks (sugar-free drink sticks sweetened with Better Stevia).

Now, back to the question of goal support...

Do You Push Yourself Hard Enough?


This is a question rarely asked here at Cranky Fitness!

I tend to value long-term persistence over short term awesomeness. This blog is all about baby steps, setting realistic goals, practicing self-compassion, embracing forgiveness, and of course, engaging in a boatload of whining, procrastination, and rationalization.

However, staying engaged for the long haul is not necessarily inconsistent with kicking ass in the short term!

I was recently over at Norma's excellent blog Welcome to My World.  She tends to be a determined, take-no-prisoners, eat-nails-for-breakfast kinda gal, and is WAY inspiring. In one of her posts she asks readers a question about the previous day:

"Did you push yourself? Or did you fuck up but tell yourself it’s fine and it’s part of the journey and that you’ll do better tomorrow? Do you ever actually DO your best?"
Which seemed like an excellent question, and not one I pose to myself very often. If ever.

I'm thinking it might be useful every now and then.

Because while many people need to let up on impossibly high standards they set for themselves, some of us are such experts in self-compassion that we sometimes miss out on the incredible satisfaction that comes from pushing our limits and blasting through them.

Now don't get me wrong: at heart I am still predominately a "don't set yourself up for failure" anti-perfectionist; a veritable Poster Girl for cutting oneself some slack.

Remember this recent creation?


And of course we have to choose our battles.  Life is too short to be Striving and Grappling and Sucking it Up on every frontier, all the time.  But there is definitely a satisfaction that comes from facing down fear or pain or fatigue or temptation and pushing your limits every now and then.

Just food for thought. I'll be curious what experiences or insights you folks might have on the whole question of Pushing Limits.

So onto a couple other things...

Wish Shelley a Happy 50th!

Inspiring Cranketeer Shelley has re-designed her blog, My Journey to Fit, to ditch the 40-something reference, and it looks lovely! And she shares a great Island-themed birthday celebration.  Stop by and welcome her to a new decade, which, from personal experience I think is pretty darn awesome.


And Finally...Who Won Last Month's Giveaway?

As you may recall, we were giving away two copies of "Honey, Do You Need a Ride?" by Runnifer Donkynski... er, I mean Jennifer Graham.

The winners are:
AzusMom and
Outsmart the Fat!

Please send me your mailing addresses gals and I'll get the books sent out to you!


To Enter This Month's Giveaway:
Leave a comment, and consider supporting fellow Cranketeers by replying to other comments as well. Many of the regulars check back and will actually read what you have written.  At the end of the month, a subgroup of active participants are selected in a nonrandom and somewhat arbitrary manner, but the winner is then selected randomly from that group.  While the giveaway is meant to encourage participation, the real awesomeness is in coming together as a community.

The winner will be announced in the next goal post in the beginning of July, and will need to check by the date announced therein.

So, what are you working on these days? How's it going? Or what do you think about the notion of Pushing Your Limits?


Push Start Photo Braden Gunem

82 comments:

  1. So, as you might be able to tell from this post, I'm wanting to crank up intensity on a goal or two, though I'd love to do it in a "work harder/play harder" way. In other words, PUSH HARDER while I'm toiling, but then take plenty of time for play. It's the semi-focused dithering around that seems to be a time suck that doesn't actually accomplish all that much.

    On the exercise front, this means HIIT, running faster, lifting heavier, and getting serious about a treadmill desk experiment.

    I'm also thinking of getting about getting a new professional certification that will involve plowing through a bunch of material pretty quickly, as it involves being present for a test that I'd love to complete before we take off in August for a house swap in Toronto.

    Haven't totally decided yet, and need to ensure meet eligibility requirements, but if I decide to do it you guys will no doubt be hearing about it on the blog. (Sorry!)

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    1. Toronto? House swap? Woohoo! I have a friend from school there. Somehow the knowledge that people I like will be in proximity to each other is satisfying. (I'm pretty sure you're not swapping her house, though.)

      Mary Anne in Kentucky

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    2. You will be right up the road from me...how exciting!!! I will post my update below...I was just so excited to see the word "Toronto." You always have such great ideas...a treadmill desk experiment sounds like something I want to read about!

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    3. Oh cool, sounds like lots of cool folks live in or near Toronto. Hmm, Cranky Fitness meetup?

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    4. I'll be curious to hear about your treadmill desk experiment as it progresses!

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  2. To me, working on something and pushing harder has a lot to do with not allowing myself to find excuses. "Ah, I don't feel like it" is not a valid reason for not doing something. You can't reach a goal if you're not willing to endure discomfort.

    Fitness wise, I noticed I get a down when I don't push myself enough. I need the challenge.

    The best way to tell if you're pushing yourself enough is to quantify it. This is why I monitor some aspects that can easily be measured (e.g. weight you lift, speed or distance of your runs, body fat %, etc.) I also set new challenges on a regular basis. The challenge has to be realistic but slightly "scary": it means you will have to work hard to attain it.

    In any case, what you've accomplished in the past means nothing about what you can accomplish in the future. It's amazing what we can do when we devote time and energy to something.

    These days I'm working at training for another half-marathon in the fall, so that I have the confidence to run a full marathon in 2014. I'm also working on lowering my body fat a little bit more.

    Outside of fitness I'm working on procrastinating less... which is why I am gonna leave this blog RIGHT NOW! LOL :-)

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    1. Love the "realistic but slightly scary" aspirations, HSH!

      Marathoning is not in my future, but I have much admiration for those of you who push through those walls.

      And it's probably time for me to follow your example and step away from the blog for a bit and go work out!

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  3. I love this goal theme - pushing limits!!! Just today I told myself to suck it up and lift heavier even though it was HARD because what is the point, otherwise?!
    For my goal, I need to push myself to get out of my comfort zone and try new things!!
    I started part of that today - I taught my first boot camp in years!!!
    Another part of that goal is to actually attend a Zumba class - it will be scary (for all involved) because I have less than zero rhythm but I'm going to do it!!!

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    1. Hooray for teaching boot camp and thinking about Zumba and trying new things Kim!!!! You seem very much a "push the limits" kinda gal.

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    2. I am extremely shy, and walking into a new class is always terrifying for me, but Zumba turned out to be a whole lotta fun and I'm glad I did it. The class I attend has a wide range of ages, fitness levels, etc. Find yourself a good class/instructor and you will have lots of fun! :)

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  4. Oh my gosh! I actually did a fist pump when I read my name. I'll be back to talk goals once I send the email and finish being tickled pink.

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  5. I always joke that it's my inherent laziness that keeps me from overtraining. So in terms of exercise, while I push myself in that I've run marathons, I don't necessarily push myself to my limits (like, running as fast as I'm probably capable of, etc.).

    When it comes to "pushing limits" outside of exercise, HA HA HA HA NO. That is definitely not me. I am risk averse, so that whole getting out of your comfort zone thing is not something I'm good at.

    So then I feel kind of like laughing at what I'm thinking about for this month - maintenance. I am going out of town for a long weekend later in the month, and I know that I will be indulgent while I'm gone. I raced yesterday and have what I'm hoping is NOT an early case of plantar fasciitis, so I'm going to be Not Running for at least a week. Although...that's my comfort zone, so if I'm not running that means I'll be doing other things. I need to put some strength training on the docket for the week, which is the thing that always falls by the wayside.

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    1. Wait, I'm not sure "inherent laziness" and "marathons" (plural?!?) belong in the same paragraph OtF. :)

      But interesting that outside of exercise it's harder to push limits, although if you're happy enough with what you've got going, then no need to! However, if there were something just a little bit out of your comfort zone that sounded like it might lead to something really awesome in your life... well, I bet you could leverage the tenacity and courage that you use for exercise and apply it to a whole new arena.

      As out of town indulgence... man I hear ya on that one!

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    2. Sounds to me like you're doing just great, OtF! I've never completed marathon distance but I've done a few halves so I've got an idea of the commitment and willpower involved... I don't think pushing yourself to complete the distance fifteen or twenty minutes faster would make it much more of an achievement!

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  6. I was always that kid that if you hit me one time I would hit you back twice and harder. That is exactly what happens when I push. I end up with the brain giving me a double push back plus harder which means I binge. I work best when I keep everything calm and routine. I do enjoy through in some roll in the dirt fun which usually results in very sore Cindy, but I just don't do well with a regular diet of it even if I define it as fun play time.

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    1. Remind me not to start hitting you Cindy! :)

      Good point about the rebellion that can kick in if you try to push too hard; personally, I generally have to find something to ease up on somewhere else if I'm going to start pushing harder on a new goal.

      Something I often tend to forget, now that I think about it...

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  7. Well, even before I read your blog I pushed myself out the door to exercise this morning. So glad I did so I don't have to beat myself up for not getting out there. Challenging yourself is good though. I feel better about myself already!

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    1. Yay for you mk! Funny, even after posting this I went to work out and was so NOT feeling it. Like you, made myself do it anyway and ended up rockin' it, and your right, sure feels good!

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  8. I push pretty hard and have for quite a while. I'm working on finding a better balance. This is not the easiest time for me.

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    1. Oh shoot Dr. J; sorry to hear things have been rough. Balance sounds like a great idea as I know you are pretty darn hard-chargin' on all fronts! Take good care of yourself. :)

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  9. Aw sweet, thanks for the shout out! You are so nice. :)

    So to answer your question, no, I don't push myself hard enough. I used to let a trainer do that, and while I liked the results, I hated feeling sore ALL THE TIME. So now I'm not nearly as sore, but I'm also much softer than I used to be...what to do, what to do. OK, I know what to do - I just have to DO IT (dang it).

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    1. I'm like you Shelley, I struggle trying to push myself hard enough without some sort of external progam, class, trainer or whatever to motivate me, but then I like to be able to determine my own level of intensity and really don't enjoy someone pushing me TOO much!

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  10. Death Ride GrandmaJune 3, 2013 at 4:51 PM

    What a day to ask this question! I spent yesterday riding my first-ever double metric century (that means 200 kilometers, which translates into 121 miles). It also included about 11,000' of total climbing. Thank goodness I rode with a couple of friends - we managed to push each other through the hard parts. The route actually came within a 20 minute ride (downhill, too!) of my house at about mile 55 - passing that turn was not too easy. So anyway, I can safely say that I have been pushing myself. I can also safely say that this is not the thing to do too often! I was more tired last night than I have ever been before. I couldn't eat (until I made my poor husband get up at midnight to heat up some soup) and could hardly stay awake to answer his questions about the ride. He wonders (quite reasonably) if this is making me think twice about the dreaded Death Ride. Well, yes. But so far, even thinking twice has me wanting to give it a shot.

    So, Crabby, push away. But I am actually looking forward to letting go a bit later this summer.

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    1. DRG, you just knocked me out. You are a machine!!!

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    2. Looking forward to letting go, oh yes! Just like you can't have sunshine twenty-four hours a day (at least not on this planet) pushing all the time would be static, not dynamic.

      Mary Anne in Kentucky

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    3. DRG, it's so interesting the way some people are naturally inclined to challenge themselves at every opportunity (i.e., you), and others of us find slacking and compromising so much more a natural state!

      But you're right, ideally life is a good balance between the two, with plenty of challenge and rest, striving and play, pushing and savoring.

      I'd say you have some down time coming!

      And solarity, with your work schedule, I don't know when you find time to just chill, but sounds like you are another one who doesn't need reminders to "push!"

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    4. Just the training for the Death Ride sounds like the kind of achievement people write songs about! Or maybe an epic poem?

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    5. Way to rock it out DRG. It's nice to have friends that will push us through those hard times. I am up to 4 of my 13.1 miles I hope to complete in Sept and this past weekend I ran with my sister, daughter and teenage nieces. The extra encouragemnet they provided allowed me to push myself just a little bit harder.

      Let's own this month!

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    6. That's awesome MrsMars!!! Love the idea of you and sister, daughter and nieces all running together and inspiring each other.

      Sounds like you're making great progress towards september!

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  11. I am still on track with my daily meditation. Five months. I love it!

    I intentionally did not set any food / exercise goals this year, but I have been pushing myself in both areas.

    Trying to be as grain / dairy free as I can manage (I don't say no all the time), and to say yes as often as possible to yoga, weights, walking, hiking, and the pool.

    Just picked up a three month unlimited yoga package, so I should be able to fold right in half by September.

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    1. Unlimited yoga; that sounds wonderful. I am still super impressed with your daily meditation.

      Mary Anne in Kentucky

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    2. Kimberly, I am in awe that you're still sticking to it daily at 5 months. That's amazing! You really are inspiring.

      And thats great about the yoga! Sounds like your routine is awfully darn healthy and balanced. Yay you!

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    3. Good grief ... my attempts at daily meditation never last five days! 0.0

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    4. I should meditate. Trouble is I forget I said that about two seconds after I said that! Kudos for five months of meditation! And I envy your yoga pass! I do go twice a week and that only costs me $25/year...I have access to two more days per week too, but the type of yoga I do doesn't seem like it is enough *real* exercise. Exercise should make you sweat and breath hard a lot, right? Yes I do sweat a little bit and sometimes am breathing hard during some of the more challenging positions, but it (yoga) can't be as good as a brisk walk, can it?

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  12. I had to think a bit to remember what my goal for last month was, because it had to be completed by May 18th, which is seeming a long time ago. After selling the house I successfully Transplanted All the Things. Or at least none of them have died yet, although one of the peonies is looking iffy.
    I think this month I'll go back to the goal I abandoned in order to deal with the house situation: unpack three boxes of dishes. It sounds a lot simpler than "getting the yard in shape" which I will be working on to keep from being overwhelmed, but that is like saying I'll keep on doing the laundry. Unpacking those boxes will never have to be done again.
    Now, my thoughts on pushing it to the limit. The important thing here is to be able to recognize your limit. During my decades of poor health, that was very difficult. An effort that one day would be quite possible might, on another, send me to bed for close to a week. My health now is not only much improved but much more stable, but I still feel reluctance to push very hard.

    Mary Anne in Kentucky

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    1. I am really looking forward to a lot of yoga Mary Anne. So glad your health has improved...I think it is hard to push yourself when you are suffering. Best of luck on unpacking those dishes!!!

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    2. Great point, Mary Anne, about the hazards of pushing too hard when dealing with health issues. Glad yours has stabilized, and that you've found ways to keep yourself active without overdoing it!

      You rocked the Transplanting of the Things despite the huge scale of the project, so hoping that the boxes of dishes goes smoothly too!

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    3. The dishes are actually quite addictive. I had to stop myself last night to get to bed on time. They're like peanuts.

      Mary Anne in Kentucky

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    4. Nobody and move just one, eh Mary Anne? :) Of all the things I look forward to packing and unpacking, dishes much rate in the top three items! There is something so easy about packing them in a box as they nest inside each other. Then to unpack and perhaps imagine the meals that will be had in the new home....yes, there is something about plates and bowls and cups and saucers ... to name a few.

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  13. Good timing on this - I have been thinking that I need to focus on diet - always the hard part for me, and always what I am most likely to give up on. This month I need to get serious and pay attention. That is the big thing for me - paying attention, it is just too easy to let habit take over.

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    1. That "paying attention" thing is awfully hard JavaChick! So many important things to focus on and only so much willpower/mindfulness to go around. But sounds like you've got a good mindset going in; good luck making this month a time for healthy new habits!

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  14. Well, I'm still chugging along with the Spanish flashcards - another month of 100% completion every day, despite a particularly severe bout of man-flu and the demotivation / frustration of the fifty or so words that I just CAN'T get to sink in however many times I look at them... Honestly, I forget them within seconds. #8-(

    Unusually for me, I'm going to add in a slightly more health related goal for June - actually taking asthma medication and peak flow readings twice a day like I'm supposed to, rather than my usual schedule of "when I remember and can be bothered" (medication) and "pretty much never" (peak flow). 100% so far..!

    For someone who reads and (intermittently) comments on a fitness blog I have what seems to be a slightly unconventional attitude to pushing myself to the limit... It's not that I never do, it's just that I don't feel bad about it if I don't! I do an hour of ju-jitsu every week, cycle commute 50 or 60 miles a week, walk to wherever I'm going whenever possible and consciously avoid using power-assisted anything wherever practical (I use a push mower, a hand drill, stairs instead of lifts, bike instead of car, etc). Aaaaaand that's enough. Sure, sometimes I run, I do martial arts tournaments and charity bike rides, when I compete I'm EXTREMELY competitive, and some of these things involve pushing myself to places I thought I could never go, but I don't feel bad if I don't do any of that stuff for a few months, or longer.

    Where is it written I have to be faster, better, stronger, every month and every year? While I'm doing a reasonable amount of exercise, I'm fairly fit and a healthy weight, is it really a big problem if I just stay in my comfort zone most of the time and do the things I enjoy doing, at an enjoyable pace?

    I do feel there's a certain amount of brainwashing in the fitness industry, as with any other industry - they need us to be dissatisfied and aspiring to "better" things, because if we're settled and happy where we are they can't sell us anything... #8-S There's nothing wrong with challenging yourself, of course, but I think it's always important to take the time to appreciate where we are now!

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    1. Good point about appreciating where we are, Shadowduck! And yeah, I agree there's a tendency to act as though people who pursue more extreme athletic achievements are somehow morally superior or something.

      I find for me with fitness, healthy eating etc, if I'm not trying to move forward a bit I inevitably end up moving backwards. I tend to change the focus to whichever is most neglected, and have sort of a dynamic maintenance process where I slip back and move forward, depending on what I'm paying attention to.

      But every now and then I think it's somehow "good" for me, psychologically, to up the intensity a bit on some front or another, not only for the quicker results but for the experience itself, reminding me that I AM capable of doing more when I put my mind to it.

      But again, I think you have an excellent point!

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    2. Changing things up is great, and pushing your limits to achieve something new is one of the most motivating and fulfilling things you can do in a fitness context! My only gripe is with the gung-ho attitude that seems to view anything less than 110% gut-wrenching lung-bursting effort as some kind of worthless cop-out...

      What actually pulled my chain was the quote you used "Did you push yourself? Or did you fuck up..." So, I'm supposed to believe that if I'm not pushing myself to the limit I've somehow fucked up? Maybe I just want to ENJOY my bike ride that day rather than half-killing myself to add a couple of mph to my average speed?! Aaaaaaggghhhh!!!!

      *deep breaths*

      I feel better now. #8-)

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    3. Ah, that makes sense, and I took the quote out of context, and you're totally right about the message that we should all be doing 110% or it doesn't count. And obviously that's not the message of Cranky Fitness generally!

      For me, I think the question of fucking up was about: "Did you tell yourself that THIS time you were going to push yourself because you had some really good reasons, but then, yet again, did you decide that the short term satisfactions of the moment were too compelling and so you backed off even though you knew you would really be ultimately happier if you met the challenge you set out for yourself? And do you tend to do this ALL THE TIME LATELY???"

      I realize that's reading a lot in, but that happened to be my situation with several current attempts to either do or not do things, and so that's partly why it resonated.

      Love your thoughtful take on things Shadowduck!

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    4. A fellow push mowerer! And a fellow appreciator of the now. Yay! I applaud the medication goal especially.

      Mary Anne in Kentucky

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    5. Perhaps it would be better said that 'consistency' could be something someone pushes themselves to do too. Sometimes that really IS a goal to push towards accomplishment. :)

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    6. That's one of the reasons why I'm here, Crabby! Cranky Fitness generally seems a lot more in touch with the real world than most of the fitness blogs out there. #8-)

      Now is all we have, solarity! #8-D

      Sherri, I think consistency in the basics is THE most important thing in fitness (and most other development goals). A superhuman effort means nothing if it only happens once a month, it's the things you do every day or every week that make the difference!

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    7. Death Ride GrandmaJune 7, 2013 at 4:39 PM

      Y'know, even though I am pushing like crazy right now, I totally agree with you, Shadowduck. For me, the thing I Iove is that being active is a regular part of my life these days. I am at a training camp now and when I say once will be plenty of this for me, most of the other people here seem to think the sympathetic thing to do is to reassure me that I will be back.

      Frankly, I often wonder about my sanity because I am trying once!

      Seems to me that the right answer is to put most of our effort into finding something sustainable. With, of course, the occasional foray into the improbable just to remind ourselves it's out there.

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    8. "Seems to me that the right answer is to put most of our effort into finding something sustainable. With, of course, the occasional foray into the improbable just to remind ourselves it's out there."

      Now THAT is exactly what I was trying to say, but I took several paragraphs and still didn't express it so clearly... #8-D

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    9. Love that too! It's that little dose of improbable every now and then that can help mix things up.

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  15. I like it. I'm feeling...um...less than inspired of late and am trying tom make June a push harder kick my own butt sort of month. Thanks for helping out with the nudging in the right direction :)

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    1. Interesting geosomin, in that you strike me as someone who usually stays pretty active on a number of fronts. But sounds like this month you're REALLY gonna be impressive!

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  16. I so admire everyone who's responded here! Meditation; dish putting-awayedness; Death Rides;language lessons; ju-jitsu; healthy habits?! Wowza!

    For me - just about ANY thing that's different, harder, etc... seems pretty scary and I am the queen of rationalizing why I did or didn't (fill in the blank).
    But, this past weekend, I managed to stare a demon down with a boat load of help from my sister and few other 'angels' and it felt pretty freakin' awesome. In fact, I have to climb down off the gloat-mobile that I've been riding since Saturday evening.
    I'm still on the push ups and increasing the number each month (no - not each week).
    Thanks for keeping the Goal Posts going, Crabby :)!

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    1. Anon, it is way, way too early to climb off that gloat-mobile yet! You are so modest about your accomplishments it's killin' me, but I won't rat you out if you want to pretend it was something merely ordinarily awesome and not off-the-charts impressive.

      But I'm with you on admiring all the great accomplishments here!

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  17. I push myself to walk to work every morning. I'm fine once I'm out the door, but I tend to procrastinate actually taking that first step. I find I really only work out my hardest when I am in a class and I don't want to be the old lady that can't keep up.

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    1. So funny Therese the way the first steps are hardest, even when we KNOW it's never as bad as we think it's gonna be. And peer pressure in classes is definitely a great motivator!

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  18. I love these posts Jan!!! I know you have been swamped but I am part of the UA What's Beautiful campaign. I honestly would not have signed up if I knew it had been a challenge thing cause I am not into that these days AND it seemed like a physical challenge & I already do that every day! ;)

    I decided to turn it into something I need which is a personal internal challenge to feel I AM ENOUGH. I have written 3 posts already & the 4th tomorrow if you want to go back & read... and read tomorrow - but it is personal to me & glad I did this UA thing now cause it is helping me since I turned it into what I WANTED to work on! :)

    I have already found the balance on the physical level so it is more about the internal & I know you get that! :)

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    1. That's great that you turned the What's Beautiful campaign into something personally meaningful Jody. I'll definitely have to catch up on those posts!

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  19. A few weeks ago I signed up for a skating footwork test- it will be tomorrow. I've been working on this footwork for two years (among other skating projects) and I was tempted to just keep working on it and make sure it's really passing level. But my coach says I will very likely pass it, and even if not, it's time to get some feedback from the judges. So I've been working really hard on it for about the last month. Amazing how much more progress can be made with a deadline staring you in the face.

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    1. Good luck on the footwork test Mary, hope it goes well! And yeah, "outside" deadlines/accountability can really make a difference. Wish i could get the same discipline without 'em, but it always seems so arbitrary when it's just me.

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  20. Thanks for the shout-out, O Hard-Shelled Friend.

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    1. Love your inspiration and fearlessness and common sense Norma!

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  21. I always like to comment on these special postings before reading other comments...do I push myself? Why yes I do! But not in the way you might think. I push myself by seeing just how far I can go before I have to get back on track again. I constantly test the boundaries...How much wine can I drink before I see a negative result? How many times can I buy a pack of Skinny Cow frozen treats and only eat one per day? How much bread can I add in a day's worth of eating before the scale goes up? How little can I exercise in a week before I gain?

    So yes, I am a pushy b*tch at times, always testing my boundaries...but...as I continue to grow up, I am working on pushing myself more into the good ways of pushing one's self... I do that by trying new things and embracing the surprising good results that sometimes happen, like the recent addition of bike riding.

    Oh, and just a note, if my name gets drawn, please pass by and give the prize to someone else. Thanks :D

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    1. Sherri, interesting the whole different take on "pushing limits" -- I think that's a natural tendency, to see what we can get away with, and one many people do but don't cop to.

      And sometimes, by experimenting with what you can get away with, you can discover that you've been needlessly insisting on a standard that doesn't make sense!

      But love that you're pushing limits in trying new things, and even finding you're liking them. So easy to fall back on the familiar all the time.

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    2. You mean I am not the only one who does negative pushing? Aw shucks! Here I thought I was one of a kind!!! hehehehe

      And yes...the more I test the waters both negatively and positively, I am learning...and I am trusting myself more as well as my judgement on what I eat or what I do for exercise or what I don't eat or what I don't do for exercise. Remember, this is all new territory for me. I have never been this way before. I am still learning how to live as a semi-normal healthy woman...and I LIKE IT! :D

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    3. Sherri D. - "the more I test the waters both negatively and positively, I am learning...and I am trusting myself more as well as my judgement..." I love this! What a great way to look at life and learning. It is liberating and inspiring. Thank YOU!!

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  22. Just checking back in, not that there's probably anyone out there reading, but weirdly enough... I've been finding myself pushing a little harder during this last week! Going a little harder/longer when exercising, taking care of some long put-off chores, signing up and getting started on a new certification course...

    Thanks Cranketeers!

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  23. Great post and replies! I am so inspired by Death Ride Grandma and others who commented.
    I had some major surgery in December and January. I'm now recovered medically but still tired. So to push myself (within limits) is important to me so as to prove my recovery is going ok. I find pushing myself to do what I planned, no excuses, really works. Also when I fail to do what I planned, it's depressing. So it's walking and cycling for now, in small doses. (Plus reading inspirational blogs!)

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    1. Welcome SouthCoast!

      And wow, recovering from surgery is tough, both physically and psychologically. But if you are respecting your limits and not doing anything dumb (something I've been known to do post-surgically!), I think your "go for it" attitude is great! Taking charge of the recovery process by doing what you can to stay active is HUGE, good luck! And hope to see ya round here again!

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    2. Death Ride GrandmaJune 7, 2013 at 4:48 PM

      Hey, South Coast, I was 2 years out from my surgery before it seemed right to get down to serious physical work. Sounds like you're on a great path! I'd say you are doing it all right, eccept for getting depressed about an occasional slip-up. Let that bit go!

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  24. I started a personal training business almost a year ago, but finally took the leap and left my day job in March to work for myself full time. Self-employment is a limit pusher if ever there was one! Doing the work is easy, but all of the other stiff gets overwhelming sometimes and never stops adding up. A little vacation (or just an afternoon off) would be nice, but it's hard to force myself to do it!

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    1. Wow, that's exciting Denny! Though it does sound pretty darn demanding. Good luck with the personal training biz!

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  25. My new goal is...studying for the GRE!! Oh man. This is a scary and exciting goal. I plan on taking the test at the end of August beginning of September. Aaaaaannnnd...then... applying for grad school. Holy buckets. This is a huge leap for me.

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    1. For anybody! Bravo, and all the best!

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    2. That's so awesome Theresa! Hooray for huge leaps! But once you set your mind to an exciting goal like that, bet there'll be no stopping you.

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  26. It was all going so well! Then all it took was a couple of unexpected social invitations for BOTH goals to go completely out of the window... I'm now a couple of days behind on the flashcards and I'm sure I forgot the asthma meds at least once (that's what a few drinks and a late night will do for you).

    Hey ho. True to my oft-repeated idea that "you only need to get it 90% right, 90% of the time", I'm not going to beat myself up about it ... nobody else is shouting at me! But it's going to take a while to get back on track with those flashcards. #8-/

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    1. Way to go Shadowduck--the occasional lapses that happen to everyone are a great test of building new habits. I think getting right back on track without angsting over setbacks is the true secret of long term successful people.

      And love the 90/90 idea!

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