Creating the ‘New Normal’

Hi and welcome to another week,

Congratulations to everyone who got a couple of sessions (or maybe a couple more than that!) done last week – there was some tough work done that is for sure.  I have to say I really loved that interval running/punching start to the class on Friday and am looking forward to doing that again (maybe not for a couple of weeks though!)

The sessions for the week ahead look pretty cool as well – we have a couple of ‘tabata’ based classes (20 secs ‘flat out’ followed by 10 seconds rest) on stations right throughout the gym.  There also seems to be approximately 100000 abs exercises scattered throughout the plans…not sure whatever was writing the plans was thinking about when they put all of those in!  Apparently we all benefit in the long-term even though it doesn’t feel great ‘in the moment’.

Today’s blog is about creating a ‘new normal’ and came about during a conversation with a long-term member who is doing their first ‘Round 1’ challenge this month – and despite being a member for nearly five years reckons to have learned more in these last two weeks than in the rest of their tenure combined.  (I have to say that I didn’t know whether to be happy or appalled at that revelation but that I can hopefully LEARN from it and put some more steps in place to help newcomers!).

I am going to try and tell the story in a bit of a roundabout way so please do stick with me.

When Nessy and I moved back from Melbourne way, way back in late 2007, we moved into our old house in Atwell – we had leased it out whilst we were gone.  Now as happens with houses as they get old – or as happens with rental houses depending on your perspective! – not everything worked ‘exactly’ as it should of upon our return.  One thing that didn’t work was the lock on the front door.

Sure – it locks – but the little ‘button’ to lock it/unlock it was broken so we had to lock the door with a key.  We sort of shrugged our shoulders – it was a bit of a pain, but there was a work-around – and added it to a list of things that needed to be ‘fixed’.  I am sure you know where I am going here – it is now 2018, the lock still doesn’t work ‘properly’ and we are locking it with a key every time…it is the ‘new normal’ in our life.  The door needs to be locked with a key, everyone in the house knows that, and that is what we do!

As was being explained to me in the gym on Thursday, the ‘new’ eating template introduced in her household has quickly become the ‘new normal’ for the entire family.  Now this might be drawing a bit of a long bow – after all, it has only been two-weeks – and she admittedly was filled with the passion and enthusiasm of anyone who adapts something new and experiences some immediate success, but…

The youngest in the family (miss 8) has responsibility for making everyone’s breakfast.  She is making overnight oats for everyone (and there are a couple of different ‘orders’ in the family of 4) – it is her job to do each night as soon as dinner is done.  The four labelled jars (Mum, Dad, Mr 11 and Miss 8) go into the fridge every night except Saturday and that is breakfast D-O-N-E.  Dad grabs his from the fridge and eats them at his desk when he gets to work…every minute of head start on the freeway traffic is a bonus that’s for sure!

Sunday breakfast is pancakes – that’s Dad’s job and one that he has taken too…he is creating berry mixes and using kiwi fruit to sweeten them up because there is ‘no honey or maple syrup allowed’!

Meal prep day is Sunday.  Now I did ask the question about ‘what happens when you have ‘stuff’ on Sunday afternoon’…it was met by a very firm, ‘Well, it will just need to be done Sunday morning, wont it!’  Anyway, I guess challenges like that are in the future.  Anyway, the ‘meal prep’ involved 3x large backing trays – one each for chicken, beef and sweet potato.  All of it went in the oven together and whilst it was cooking, 30 – yep, 30! – plastic lunch boxes were laid out on what must be a MASSIVE kitchen bench.  A serve of pre-made coleslaw or Kale-slaw mix went into each one with the ‘I know I could make it myself but I wanted to make this as easy as possible so there would be no excuses for not getting it done’ comment.

Whilst all of this was happening, Miss 8 played her second role in the play – treat maker.  Into 20x little mini containers – again, seemed like a LOT to me but there are 4x people I guess – went a few mixed berries…into about half of them went some almonds as well (the ones going into school lunches couldn’t have nuts in because of some allergies).  Apparently she LOVES having this involvement in everyone’s food, getting breakfast done, making the treats and ‘helping’…who knew right?

Anyway, when the chicken, beef and sweet potato was cooked – the beef and potato had been pre-cut, the chicken was in the form of thigh pieces that had been halved – and was served out into the lunch boxes.  Each lunch box got a quarter of sweet potato and either 1x piece of beef or 2x pieces of chicken…I asked if she measured it and the answer was ‘No, not really – but the serves just looked about ‘right’.  Dad takes two lunch boxes to work every morning (he goes in early so one is for about 10:30, the other around 1pm) and he has already said that he doesn’t feel so tired in the afternoons anymore…each of the kids take a single lunchbox to school and a ‘berry treat’ and Mum eats a lunchbox around 12pm on the 2 days she is at home and takes two lunch boxes and a berry treat each of the 3x days she is at work…mostly she finds herself eating a lunch box at around 9:30am/10am when she is in the office and has the other one around 2pm ‘if she is hungry’…

Mr 11 has been known to eat another berry treat (or two) when he gets home from school as well as a banana with some peanut butter.  Miss 8 apparently gets annoyed by that because ‘there wont be enough’ but has asked Mum for some more containers to make a few extras this week so it seems that she isn’t ‘really’ annoyed.

Dinner hasn’t changed – Mum pretty much cooks every night and – as you would expect from someone who has been in the gym for so long – makes sure to put something ‘pretty healthy’ in front of her family.

Here’s the thing about that last statement though.  These guys were doing things ‘pretty well’ already.  All they have really done with this change to their routine is ‘tidy up’ around the edges.  A couple of weeks ago breakfast was hit and miss (with Mum and Dad regularly skipping it), lunch was a roll of the dice and dinner was awesome.  NOW, breakfast is nailed down for the whole family, lunch is good to go EVERY DAY and the fridge is full of ‘prepped’ meals and quick snacks if anyone is ever hungry.  Our member claims she has dropped 3kg’s in two short weeks…and says hubby has dropped almost 6 and ‘…is so lazy – he wont do ANY exercise…’

The ‘new normal’.  It only takes a few weeks for something to become a habit…

Let me know if any of this sounds good (or not) with an email to Michael@round1fitness.com.au

See you in the gym,

Michael.