A Present To Myself

I never thought of myself as competitive; in fact, I usually find that I’m quite the opposite. In general, I like to be behind the scenes, making things go, rather than vying for attention and praise or fighting to be seen amongst the elite.

Last March, though, when my co-worker James and I had a friendly fitness wager, I discovered that striving to prove that I had just a little more oomph than someone else really helped keep me on the straight and narrow, fitness-wise.

A couple of weeks ago, I proposed a new challenge to James, and he accepted. I had been going to hold off on announcing the challenge until January 1st, but I got to thinking of it today as not only a challenge, but a present to myself. It’s not even a New Year’s Resolution — it’s a present to myself. I will help myself to lose weight and get more fit; plus, I’ll do it before James does. 🙂

The terms of the wager:

  • On the morning of January 1, 2008, each party will weigh and make their weight known to the other party. This may be done privately, via e-mail, or publicly, via dianaschnuth.net.
  • The first party to lose 5% of his or her body weight AND maintain that loss for seven consecutive days wins the challenge.
  • The party who loses the challenge must buy dinner for the winning party and the winning party’s spouse.

(I realized afterward that weighing on the morning of January 1st might help me avoid indulging too much on New Year’s Eve, too — bonus.)

After we agreed on the terms, I thought that maybe it would be fun to get our spouses into the challenge. After all, I know Christina was on a weight loss kick for a while, as was Aaron; plus, it’s always easier to keep with a program if your significant other is on the same program. I haven’t gotten a definite yea or nay on either spouse. If one or both of them decide to get in on the game, though, it’ll make winning and losing a little less clear-cut, as there will be a first, second, and third (and possibly fourth) place. Will the winner disqualify him or herself by gaining back a certain percentage of weight before one of the last two challengers loses their five percent? I suppose we’ll have to solidify that once we find out who’s in.

As it stands now, I’ll have to lose 10 or 10½ lbs to make my five percent. Expect a detailed post in one week for the beginning of the challenge. The participants are encouraged (but not required) to post their initial weigh-ins in the comments of that upcoming post.

As a side note: the aikido dojo is closed for the week between Christmas and New Year’s. Since tonight is when I usually go to aikido, and my lower body is usually what’s sore afterward, I did a short lower body workout in lieu of keiko. My set consisted of 25 leg adductions with a resistance band, 25 wall squats with my balance ball (body weight only; no dumbbells), and 25 stiff-legged deadlifts with 5 lb dumbbells. I did 25 reps of each exercise in a superset (no rests), took one or two minutes for a drink of water, then did them all again.

My short but intense (for me) lower body workout promises to give me the weekly soreness I crave, in the absence of my normal aikido workout. We’ll see…