Approximately twelve weeks ago, I made a resolution that I would be healthier in the New Year. I read that people who made small goals and worked to achieve those small goals were more successful at keeping their resolutions.
I decided that my first small goal would be to not hit snooze so much in the morning. I imagined that I would be amazingly productive if I got up when my alarm first sounded as opposed to hitting snooze twelve times. Studies indicate that those extra nine-minutes of “snooze sleep” are of no use and contain no good sleep time. Those studies might have been written by toddlers, I’m not sure.
I told my husband of my plan. “If I wake up when my alarm goes off and get out of bed, I can do yoga, get a couple of chapters written, set the day’s dinner in the slow cooker and maybe even read for pleasure.” He reminded me that my alarm was set to go off just thirty minutes before I needed to get ready, and I had just listed about three-hour’s worth of activities. He’s awfully smug for a man who wakes up every morning without an alarm clock. Oh wait. I guess he can be that way.
I double-checked my alarm before going to bed and when the alarm sounded the next morning, I hopped out of bed and wandered into the living room when I fell asleep on the recliner. The silver lining here? I didn’t hit snooze.
I didn’t hit snooze the next morning when I just turned my alarm off, rolled over and stayed in bed until my kids asked if they were to drive themselves to school.
And I didn’t hit snooze the morning after that when I fell into bed at an awful hour and forgot to turn my alarm on at all. So, I guess you could say that I was meeting my goal of not using snooze on my alarm in the morning. Sorta.
My next goal was to start the day off with a healthy breakfast. Too often, I toss a fruit bar to the girls as we sail out the door to start our day. While there’s nothing wrong with fruit bars if they are indeed fruit bars, there might be something wrong with them if they are instead candy bars, cookies and still-frozen waffles which I called fruit bars to make myself feel better.
My ever-supportive husband asked if I wanted him to help. I held my head high and proclaimed that this was something I wanted to do—it was my goal. I could make it happen.
The first morning, I got up when my alarm went off, wandered into the kitchen and began browning hamburger meat for a good ol’ one-skillet boxed meal. “What are you doing?” my patient husband asked. “Making Hamburger Helper, I think,” I sleepily replied stirring the sauce with cold milk and hot water while still in my nightgown. “For breakfast?” he asked as he got the bowls out of the cabinet and began filling them with cereal and milk for him and the girls. “I guess I’m a little bit confused,” I admitted before falling back asleep on the couch.
Good news: Dinner was already done for that evening. See how effective my new healthy goals were making my life?
Over the course of that week, our daughters had leftover pizza for breakfast (grains, protein and dairy—it’s the perfect food, morning, noon or night), an entire bag of Cuties, Nutella and an actual fruit bar that I think Nana brought over. After that week of trying to wake up early and have a healthy breakfast, I had a new motto: Ehhh…close enough.
Finally, with my sleep habits and breakfast beginnings in check (ehhh…close enough), I was ready to implement part three for a healthy me. Exercise. I exercise regularly. Every week, I push my cart through the grocery store and that sucker is heavy, y’all. It’s strength training and aerobic rolled into one. Jillian Michaels tweeted me and told me I was lying to myself about that. I tweeted back and told her she clearly had not seen my weekly shopping list.
But, on a bright Saturday morning, the perfect morning routine came to me. The entire family rolled out of bed at about the same time. Sure, the clock’s hour was in the double digits, but we didn’t hit snooze and we all laced up our expensive tennis shoes and set out on a morning walk. To the donut shop. C’mon! Donuts are healthy if you have to walk a mile to get them.
Don’t tweet that to Jillian Michaels for confirmation, though.