30 Days To A Better Life

30 Day Plan

What is my 30 day plan? Well, I believe that it’s much easier to break a bad habit, or even pick up a good one if you try it first for 30 days. It’s simple, take something you’d like to do and try it for 30 days, just a month, only 4 weeks, and then see how you feel at the end of it. If you suffered through it, then great, your month is up and you can go back to your old ways, and if you are happy with the results, now that you’ve trained yourself for a month, it will be much easier to keep it going.

Examples:

  • Exercising
  • Cleaning a little every day
  • Reading before bed
  • Eating healthier (ie: no meat, less carbs, etc)
  • Taking vitamins
  • Going for a walk
  • Juice fast

Going Meat-less:

So far, I have been attempting 30 days meat free. I have never really had any desire to stop eating meat before, and I thought this would be a great challenge for me. Now, I have to admit, I love meat, I love the taste, the texture, the multitude of combinations…I’d probably give up my left arm for a life time supply of bacon. This was not going to be easy.

My reason for choosing to abstain from meat came from the recent meat recall and the video of the cattle being tortured. The video is very upsetting, and as much as I love eating meat, I hate to see animals suffering.

So here I have begun a month without meat, and without my precious bacon (I have a lb in the freezer that’s waiting for me). In most cases I would recommend going cold turkey into something like this. If you don’t, you risk making exceptions and quitting before the month is over. I took a few weeks and cut back the amount of meat I ate, because I found I wasn’t completely prepared to stop. I hadn’t prepared for situations where one large meal (with meat) was prepared for many people (ie: going over to my boyfriend’s dad’s house for dinner). I also hadn’t expected for some restaurants to have a very limited menu of items (we went to an Irish restaurant for St. Patty’s Day and the only meat-less item was a side salad, needless to say, I was still hungry afterwards).

My Progress:

On February 17th, I started restricting the meat I ate. I only ate it in situations where there really wasn’t anything else to eat. I had pepperoni pizza once or twice, half a ham sandwich, and a few others, but no main courses of meat.
On March 7th I had gone 24 hours without meat, and I consider this my day one. I’ve had cravings, but since I officially started not one drop of meat has touched my lips.

So far I’m proud of myself. I’m only half way there but I feel like it’s getting easier. I still have those cravings when I see burger commercials, but I think I can handle it. Am I going to continue to be meat free at the end of my month? I haven’t decided yet. I’ve been interested in exploring the health benefits of going vegetarian, but I can’t say if I feel any different at this point. Eating meat seems so natural, because we’re raised doing it. I need to see for myself if my body will react differently.

30 Day Diet

I’m on day 3 of my 30 day diet. I normally wouldn’t recommend attempting many of these exercises at the same time, but for me, going vegetarian and watching my food intake have become one in the same. I’ve been monitoring what I’ve been eating because I want to make sure I am getting enough protein. While doing that I noticed my fat intake was huge. I substituted meat with carbs and junk food. So far, I’ve been watching calories, fat percentage, and protein. It’s caused me to read more labels, but so far I feel pretty good.

Other Plans I may attempt:
Exercising
15 day juice fast
Going vegan
Praying the rosary
Being an early riser

Tips:

Get excited. Normally, when you are excited for something, it’s easy in the beginning but the excitement fades and you give up. Keep yourself motivated through out the month. Keep track on a calendar, be proud of your progress, and remember, it’s only 30 days.

Plan! Plan exactly what you want to do. Keep your goals simple. Think about problems you might be faced with, and what to do if they occur.

Go cold turkey. Unless it’s something that will drastically affect your body, most likely a change in diet, jump into it 100%. If you must have a preparation period, decide in advance how long it will be, ie. 2 weeks of cutting back meat, then 30 days of complete abstinence.

Don’t be hard on yourself if you slip up. Accidents happen, and as long as you keep trying it probably won’t have too much of an affect on you. Note that it happened, and try to figure out why it happened. Did you give into temptation? Did you make excuses?

Reward yourself when you succeed. Maybe it’ll be something at the end of each day, or maybe once a week. It could be a special dessert, a massage, a small shopping trip, an hour of video games. You’re trying something difficult, you deserve a reward!

Don’t make excuses! If your plan is to exercise, don’t make excuses why you can’t do it today. If you are sick, try to do something light like walking for 20 minutes or maybe yoga. It’s okay to take a day off, but don’t let yourself make excuses.

Keep busy. If you are trying to abstain from a habit like biting nails, or smoking, find something to replace it. If you’re a woman, keep your nails painted, or chew gum. Whatever you do, don’t sit around and think about how much you want to be doing the activity you’re giving up. Keep moving.

At the end of your month evaluate your progress. Did you give in at all? Did you do a whole month successfully? How do you feel? Do you want to keep it up, or go back to your old ways?

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