Now that I have some applications out, I’m beginning to feel my potential and think hopefully about my future. Over the next few months, I’m really looking to make all aspects of my life better so that I can start my career at my best.  My plan is this

  1. Keep working on conference presentations and publications:  My goal is to have at least 2 presentations and 3 more publications by the end of the academic year.
  2. Improve my health:  I’ve finally visited a doctor to address my persistent allergy and asthma problems, so now I’m on a bunch of medications (to the tune of $300/month…ouch) and will be starting allergy shots next week.  I also had a complete physical and will find out the results soon.  Four and a half years was way too long to not have at least a basic checkup.  I’m not unhealthy, but dealing with a variety of minor issues on a daily basis can be really draining over the long haul.
  3. Lose weight:  I’m not fat, but I am not in the best shape I could be.  I could exercise more, and I could certainly eat a more balanced diet (more whole grains and veggies, less alcohol and cheese).  Next month I’m playing an online game called Health Month in which you publicly post some rules for yourself on the site, and you attempt to at least maintain, if not gain, points.  Those who have points at the end of the month are put on the Wall of Awesomeness.  Those who fail are put on the Wall of Almost-But-Not-Quite Awesomeness.  Also, I managed to get a sponsor for this month, so even if I can’t do this for myself, I will feel compelled to do it for him.

My rules are:

  • 5 or fewer alcoholic beverages per week
  • Eat bright or leafy vegetables at least 5 days a week
  • Dairy only 4 days/week
  • Only one fried item per week
  • Run at least 9 miles per week
  • Visit the gym 2x/week (yoga counts)
  • Drink 15 glasses of water (8 oz. servings) in a week
  • Take all of my medications exactly as prescribed (no skipping doses)
  • Only 10 servings of coffee and tea per week

I figure these steps will help me pinpoint dietary issues that I’ve been having and make me appreciate how much awful stuff I am actually eating.  It will also get me exercising in a serious way, which will also be good for me.  Now that the weather is finally cooling off (can I get an “amen?”), I will really enjoy running and working out again.

We’ll see how this goes.  I know that a few of these will be really hard for me (water, fried stuff, and dairy), but these are not impossible goals, and I think that the benefits will be readily apparent.  If all things go well, I will probably drop somewhere between 5 and 7 pounds this month, which would be fantastic.  That’s really all I should lose, and I think it will make a huge difference for me.