Week 6: Set The Bar A Little Higher!

Updated:Feb 4,2013

I'm Finding the New Me!

Honestly, I don't know where my time goes. I'm constantly on the go. If Fran wasn't helping me with the kids, I wouldn't have time for a very important person — me.diabetes_tools_GoalsGuide_week6_image

It's a struggle to walk every day, but I'm excited. My old sweatpants fit a little looser. I was so thrilled I tried on my wedding dress. Baaad move! But, I'll do more because it's working.

I'm writing down everything I do to see if I can find some more time. I also move to my old exercise tape instead of watching the soaps.

You know, I decided my kids could pick up their own toys and could learn to hang up their clothes out of the dryer. I'm a stay-at-home mom — not a stay-at-home servant. I promised them rewards for helping me.

I told my family we need to start eating healthier meals. I don't want my children to have a weight problem or develop diabetes like me.

I asked my husband if he and the kids would fix dinner one evening each week. I expected moaning and groaning, but guess what? He said OK. He also said he could tell that I was happier. Yea!

-- Mariana

Where Does Your Time Go?
Time management is a challenge for most of us. We're always doing more in less time and most of us get caught in the squeeze.

Read Mariana's story again. Then write down where you're spending your time. Make a daily decision to set aside time for physical activity.

Resource Tip
Visit our Web site for handy tools and trackers, like the Glucose Tracker and Family History Tree.

Ideas to help create more time for yourself

1. Don't turn on the TV.
2. Set a timer for 10 minutes and get up and stretch and/or brisk walk.
3. Make regular exercise and healthy eating your top priorities.
4. Post a calendar where you can see it.
5. Just "say no" to requests that will take time from your exercise.
6. Delegate household chores to family members.
7. Keep a time journal and record how much time you can create for play and fun.
8. Create chore lists for each day of the week — divide and conquer.

Burn More Energy To Get More Energy
Mariana learned that she needed to burn more energy to reach her personal goals. She had to find time for more physical activity.

If you're already accumulating 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity on most days of the week, for a total of 150 minutes per week, challenge yourself to do more. You'll get more health benefits.

Let's Revisit Your Goals
Are you still increasing the time you're physically active each week? If you bought a step counter like Mariana and Fran, keep increasing your steps gradually until you reach 10,000 each day. (Most people only take 2,500 to 3,000 daily steps.) If weight loss is your goal, you'll want to work up to 12,000 to 15,000 steps each day.

Reward yourself for meeting your weekly goals. Don't look too far ahead. When you began, you thought about one week at a time. Keep with that plan for now. You'll feel successful without becoming overwhelmed. We'll learn how to create long-term goals a little later.

Check Your Choices: Food Choices

What choices are you making every day that affect your health? Are you letting tasks for others get in the way of your own time? Are you letting an unhealthy diet bring you down? When you check your choices and meals and snacks, you'll respect your body. Snacks are a choice that's easy to control. Instead of snacks that are high in saturated or trans fat, choose fruits, a handful of unsalted almonds, vegetables, or low-fat or unsweetened nonfat yogurt.

The benefits of fruits and vegetables are enormous. In a heart-healthy diet, they can help lower cholesterol, blood pressure and even your risk of cancer. They also have almost no fat and are low in calories.

Fruits and veggies are beginning to sound delicious, aren't they? The minimum recommendation is at least four to five servings each daily.

A Delicious Decision
Plan to eat at least five servings of fruits and veggies two days this week. Add another day each week until you're eating your fruits and veggies every day. If your intake level is 2000 calories per day, you need about 2 cups of fruits and 2.5 cups of vegetables each day.

What's a Serving of Fruits and Vegetables?

One serving can be:
  • 1 medium fruit
  • 1/2 cup canned or frozen fruit or vegetable
  • 1/2 cup juice
  • 1 cup of raw, leafy greens

Reaching for more

If you turn on the TV, try a few of these new stretching exercises while watching your favorite show!

Calf Stretch
Face a wall, standing about 2 to 3 feet away from it. Place your right foot about 2 feet behind your left foot. Bend your left knee, keeping your right leg straight. Both heels should be on the ground with toes pointing straight ahead. Lean into the wall, using your hands to press against it and keep your back straight. Hold for about 10–20 seconds. Repeat with the other leg.

Chest Stretch
Stand facing a door frame. Place your hands on the frame at shoulder level and walk through the doorway until you feel slight tension in your chest muscles. Hold the stretch 10–20 seconds. Relax, then repeat several times. 

Low-Back Stretch
Lie flat on the floor on your back with your legs extended and pull the right knee up to the chest. Press your back to the ground. Hold the position 10–20 seconds and then repeat with the left knee.

Reaching for more

Start Date _____________________

Steps For SuccessSMTWTFS
I shared my diabetes success story.       
I found time to increase my exercise time.       
I prepared a diabetes-friendly recipe.       
I delegated or deleted an activity from my week.       
I tried new strengthening exercises.       
I ate 4 - 5 servings each of fruits and veggies (aim for at least 2 days this week).       
(For persons with diabetes) I recorded my blood sugar.       
I was physically active this week. (Check days you were active.)       
Type of activities I did.
Brisk Walking Swimming Mowing Stretching exercises
Cycling Activity class Gardening Strength training exercises
Jogging Climbing stairs Cleaning Other _____________
I found support and motivation in the MyStart! Community.
Amount of time I was active. (Write minutes under day of the week.)       
Write your feelings about being physically active this week.

How did you feel about the food choices you made this week?

Write down the reward you chose for meeting your goals this week.


This content was last reviewed on 7/5/2012.


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