Workout 5 or Why I’d Procrastinate My Death If I Could…

The MegaChallenge 200 or 5 or... Well, it's a start!I love to work out. I love to write. I love to bake bread. I even love — truly — tidying our house.

But I procrastinate each and every one of them until my pants are so tight that I have to buy the next size, my blog goes un-updated for a year, we are forced to eat stale crackers, and the piles of clutter threaten to overtake the lawn.


Because I’m a professional procrastinator. That’s why. I work best for a deadline. Tell me it’s due at midnight and I’ll whip that assignment out and have it on your desk at 11:56. Sharp. And it will be gorgeous.

I used to believe that this was a character flaw. After reading about the first third of Martin Seligman’s latest book*, I’ve decided that it’s my preferred method of accomplishing goals. I am a precontemplator — I work on a task for as long as I’m given and then I finalize the whole thing just as it’s due. If I constantly missed deadlines or turned in shoddy work, I might feel the need to fix this methodology. Since it’s worked for me for decades, I’ve decided to stop fighting it.

So — the question becomes — how do I apply this same work-for-the-deadline mentality to my health goals?  At the risk of hearing the Universe moan, “Duh!” I’ll say it.

I must set a deadline.

The MegaChallenge 200 is about that deadline. It really doesn’t matter whether I work out 100 or 200 or 242 times a year. It matters that I feel some internal pressure to complete a task and mark it off. I’ve stopped pretending that I can be all Zen Master about this. I’m not going to manifest some universal peace and bliss about working out. I just have to put on my shoes and go play some music I love and run! I’m always glad that I did once I actually get on the machine.

So, I have gotten on the machine 5 times since May 22 and once — today for 46 minutes of glorious running to nowhere — in 2 weeks. I am not counting the 15-30 minute walks with Champ as workouts because my body could care less how far I walk. I don’t get any noticeable physical upticks unless I run. So I will. 195 more times before the next MegaConference.

Don’t anyone dare tell me I don’t have to.

*I pre-ordered Flourish and had it in my hands the day it was released. I’m reading it. Along with 18 other titles. I’ll finish it.  Eventually. And then I’ll write a great review. Right after I put out these other fires that I’ve been setting around here. Really.

15 minutes of effort…

I am back at my seemingly perpetual task of de-cluttering my world. We are super-blessed around here with generous gift givers and the holidays left us with about thirty million new things to store. Of course, those items all came wrapped in something and were under a tall green something covered in all sorts of sparkly somethings. Now that it is officially “after the holidays” all of those somethings were making me bat wacky and had to get out of here.

But I just couldn’t do it.

I am tired. Yes, I will admit it. There are days when I just don’t wanna be the grown up! But no one else is volunteering, so up and at ’em!

I don’t know where I originally got the idea to do 15 minutes of clutter attack. Perhaps at (she can have credit if she likes) or in some book or out of sheer genius. Anyway, it isn’t my favorite way to spend a day, but sometimes it is the only way to get moving. How does it work?


When we do it, we pick 3 tasks that seem overwhelming (today: taking down decorations, putting away new stuff, and cleaning the kitchen won) and rotate those with a fourth something that we actually enjoy (a day-long game of Monopoly* won). We set the timer for 15 minutes and jump on task one. When the timer screams, we switch to the next task for the next 15 minutes. This continues ’round and ’round until we finish. Sometimes it takes an hour, others it takes 4.

Anyway, we did manage to get all three tasks done. My daughter kicked our butts at Monopoly. (Seems at a couple of weeks shy of 6 that she relies on the strategy of “buy it all and watch them die a slow death paying me rent.”) I feel much better because I don’t have visions of Christmas in April dancing in my head.

*My son got the new Monopoly Here & Now game as one of his gifts. We are fairly Monopoly obsessed around here and have several versions (including electronic ones) but this one is the strangest one evah! Things we like: cool tokens (cell phone, hybrid car, airplane, etc) and properties from all over the country. Things we hate: the money and the money!! It is 10,000 times as complicated to use because the whole shebang has been inflated by–you guessed it–a factor of 10,000. Worse than that? Three denominations are some variant of yellow–including the $100,000 and $1,000,000 bills–and are very easily mixed up. We did have a very interesting lesson on place value, though. My recommendation? Stick with your classic version and order “replacement” tokens from H@sbro. (If you feel that is somehow unethical, then go buy the game and get all giddy when you discover your own tiny St@rbuck’s mug token!)

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