As you’ve probably caught on to from my plethora of hiking posts, my husband and I really like to walk and hike. In fact that turned out to be one of the things I miss the most about our NC life while I’m living in Germany: our morning and evening walks with the dog. Walks are our time to talk, get advice from each other, take in the fresh air, listen to the hoot owls and song birds, say hello to the horses and the occasional neighbor we pass along the way, watch the seasons change. We don’t walk particularly fast and make lots of breaks for our dog to take care of business. But, it turns out that the walks were part of a calorie burning routine that I believe was one of the reasons for my insidious, and a little surprising to me, weight gain when I moved to Germany. The extra hour of movement was missed by my body and my appetite didn’t adjust accordingly.

So, it came about that during my last visit home we took a walk and began to talk about choices and healthy living. The truth is a person must choose to live a healthy life and then make choices that accumulate in this direction. Without the conscious choices that add up to healthiness, it will never come to be. Perhaps it’s the law of chaos, who knows, but evidence has shown us in our own lives that occasionally there comes a time to take stock of where we are health-wise and make a plan to reclaim our health.

We started to discuss strategies and rough out the plan for a health challenge we could accomplish across the seas. This gives the added bonus of giving us something else to talk about on viber. 🙂 That night, instead of cracking open a bud light and plopping down in front of the TV for a couple of hours, we sat at the dining room table with 8 1/2 x 11″ notepads open to a fresh page in front of us, pens in hand, and began to make a plan. Because if you want to commit to something you need to WRITE IT DOWN. It’s even better if you also tell someone. Consider yourself my witness.

Besides, and here’s the cool thing, we’re both project managers, which means we KNOW how to make a PLAN! I mean how cool is this?!!! Talk about life and work coming together in a surprising way! We also know how to identify the obstacles that could derail implementation of a plan. We know about milestones to check in on progress and how to rally appropriate resources to ultimately achieve success. Why not apply these skills to our healthy-living revamp?

We began to write, first quietly (ok, I can imagine I wasn’t so quiet, I’m usually talking or humming a tune or something…) and then we compared plans. It was interesting to notice our different approaches. I started by listing on the left hand column of the page a series of dates – every Sunday to indicate a new week, and a series of weight targets. Then on the right, I listed a series of steps I would take to hit the weight targets. My husband, on the other hand, started with a weekly schedule of work travel and workouts. Then, he moved on to weight targets. I had already designed a workout schedule so maybe that’s why I didn’t start with this, nevertheless, I found it interesting to see we began in a different way.

As my husband and I compared plans and discussed strategies I noticed that at the top of his page he’d written in all caps “PROJECT LIFE”. I joyously laughed out loud because I loved it! I mean that’s truly what we were doing. Making a project plan for a healthy LIFE! Of course, I stole this lovely idea and decided I would title my plan “Project Life 2.0”. Why 2.0? I had been through a similar revamp last September when I returned from a visit to the US in which I stepped on a scale for the first time in months and discovered, to my horror, that the scale number was a record high for me. Later that day, on our evening walk, I asked my husband to help me brainstorm a path out of the jungle of brauhauses and jager schnitzel to lower weight and better health. And he did, and it worked, to a point. But I noticed that things had begun to stall out (I had arrived at the dreaded plateau) so a reset was in order. Thus, 2.0 was born.

Halfway through the first week into Project LIFE, I weighed in and my weight had actually gone up! What?! How was this happening? I stayed the course believing that the plan would work, and today I’m happy to report I’m actually 0.8 kilos below my target weight for the week! 

I’ll use the blog to talk more about Project LIFE and some of the lifestyle changes we’re implementing to reclaim our health. I’ll post perhaps in weekly installments, could be more, could be less. 

I welcome your healthy life tips, please post in comments. We’re all in this together!

Go Project LIFE!!!!

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