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Success Breeds Success

The Rich Writer: Success Breeds Success

The Rich Writer

How to Thrive on the Writer's Road

Monday, January 3, 2011

Success Breeds Success

iStock_000010285574MediumJust over two months ago, I set myself a challenge: establish an exercise habit before the year finished. I’d suffered some serious exercise set-backs when I managed to injure both Achilles tendons (what can I say? I’m talented) and subsequently traded running and walking for extra glasses of wine. Not good for the waistline or energy level. Not good for my writing productivity, either, as it turns out.

Yes, that motivates me more than my waistline. Call me crazy.

So I adopted Leo Babauta’s Six Habits method of establishing a new habit via incremental tiny changes, finding motivation along the way with other writers trying to make pre-New Years’ changes.

The result?

Short answer: I’ve got me a well-established exercise habit. Yay! It’s left me stronger, fitter, and prepped to continue, which is very, very, very cool, because exercise is not always my favorite thing, because there’s always this little voice saying “You could be writing…or reading…or napping…” You get the picture.

The best part? This amazing feeling of success has me fired up to succeed in my next habit change. I know I can make a change, because I just did.

Success breeds success.

This year, I’m not making New Year’s Resolutions. Instead,I have a New Year’s Plan: to make incremental changes toward developing new habits, working on one at a time. And I’m starting with a leg up, because I’ve succeeded at making on major life change even before ringing in 2011.

What change will I tackle next? More about that next post…

NROLFWLong answer (for those of you interested in the boring details): I just finished Stage I of my chosen exercise program (The New Rules of Lifting for Women, by Lou Schuler).

Here’s what I could do two months ago:

Squats (2 sets x 15 reps): 25 lbs
Push-ups (2 x 15): “knee” push-ups
Dumbbell bent-over rows  (2 x 15): 2 x 10 lb dumbbells
Step-ups (2 x 15): 2 x 10 lb dumbbells
Prone jackknife: 2 sets of 8 reps

Here’s what I can do now (lifting as many reps as possible):

Squats: 20 x 70 lbs
Push-ups: 10 full push-ups
Dumbbell bent-over rows: 14 reps x (2 x 25 lb dumbbells)
Step-ups: 15 x 20 lbs
Prone jackknife: 16

…and my Achilles tendons are finally healed, so I’m looking forward to adding those walks back to my workouts. (My dogs are in favor of more walks, too.)

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At January 3, 2011 at 6:20 PM , Blogger Julie Hedlund said...

Wow - go you! I think incremental changes work best too. Despite that, I have a list of "resolutions" a mile long. But they are all small and measurable, so hopefully that works in my favor...

At January 3, 2011 at 6:41 PM , Blogger Cheryl Reif said...

I know! I ALWAYS have a huge list of resolutions. This is the first year in forever that I don't, but I'm so excited to get to work on my next goal. Thanks for the cheerleading :)


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