Organizing Theory & Artistry

Ruly Recap and Reader Feedback: Healthy Eating

An end-of-November sunset.


I’m running just a bit over on November’s theme but wanted to finish off this healthy eating series with a quick summary of November’s posts. (I promise we will get into a new holiday-appropriate theme next week.)

As I told you at the beginning of the month, my goals for November were to attempt to eat “half my plate” in fruits and vegetables at each meal and to get 20 minutes of exercise each day following Jillian Anderson’s 30-Day Shred. Since it is the holiday season and a difficult time to start a diet, I decided to allow myself to eat whatever I wanted so long as I ate an equivalent amount of fruits and veggies to balance it out.

Two days in, I discovered a delicious blueberry smoothie and tried out spaghetti squash on my kids. My body was sore from the exercise.

8 Days in, I gave you another update on my progress and we discussed perfectionism in diet and exercise and the reasons why people always try extreme diet and exercise routines.

There were some great comments on this post, including this one from Bertie:

“I recently watched an interesting presentation given by one of the directors of my company’s wellness program called “Fat Loss Made Simple.” One thing that really stuck with me was how they emphasized NOT to try for an all-at-once, perfectionistic approach. They said that of the people who begin a health/fitness regime, 98% will revert back to their old habits, and only 2% will be successful. The 98% tried for an immediate, ‘I will only eat healthy food and exercise two hours everyday’ type of approach. The 2% who were successful took it in gradual steps.”

10 Days in, I gave you another update, growing a bit weary of cooking all those vegetables but getting stronger on the exercise routine.

17 Days in, I was feeling a bit weary—eating bland soups and hobbling around on tender Achilles tendons while keeping up my exercise.

We paused on the dietary discussion to discuss Thanksgiving.

  • I gave some tips for organizing your Thanksgiving cooking and shared the mini pumpkin pies we brought to my daughter’s preschool feast. There were many sweet comments and Thanksgiving wishes on this post.

We also discussed what happens when you try to impose healthy eating on others, looking at the recent experiences of school lunch programs and SNAP (food stamp) programs.

We had fun listening to a little produce-inspired music from the MyPlate Fruits & Veggies Video Challenge.

After 30 days, I gave you a final progress report on my diet and exercise results as well as the financial impact of this experiment.

This month I also gave some reminders about Daylight Savings Time, Voting and Flu Shots. I hope everyone took time to vote. In my county, one race was decided by just 26 votes. No matter where you fall in the political spectrum, make sure you plan to get educated on the issues and get involved with the political process as we head toward the 2012 presidential elections. Also, another reminder to get those flu shots if you haven’t already. Kids in our area are already coming down with influenza-like illnesses involving high fevers and other serious symptoms. It’s also time to stock the car with hand sanitizer and baby wipes to keep those hands clean.

One of the treats for me this month was to review Peter Walsh’s latest book, Lighten Up. As I read more and more news on the economic crisis, I continue to find his book so timely and full of helpful messages for people facing unexpected transitions.

One of the most unusual news articles on the economy this month was the shocking admission by a financial planner that he lost his home to foreclosure after he got caught up in the cycle of mortgage-financed high living. This New York Times article forced us all to realize that a component of economic recovery is going to involve forgiveness—both forgiveness of people who lacked knowledge about how mortgages work and got in over their heads and forgiveness of people who knew (or should have known) exactly what they were doing and strategically walked away from their obligations.  I wonder what Peter Walsh would have to say on this subject.

I hope you enjoyed this month’s posts.  I know they struck a nerve for some people who gave me feedback behind the scenes.  Diet and exercise are hard subjects to discuss.  Almost all of us could use some improvement in this area and it is hard to face an area of weakness.  However, we also know that avoiding the subject does us no good and that we have to keep striving to find ways to make ourselves healthier and encourage health among those we care about.

Have a great weekend and type to you next week!