The other day I was watching an episode of “Big Bang Theory” and I came to the realization that I have more in common with Sheldon Cooper than I care to admit.  On this particular occasion, I realized that we both share a passion for lists.

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To be clear, I have lists of lists.  Most of my lists are mundane and tedious.  I list my meal plans for the week, so I can make my grocery list, and list my schedule so I can go grocery shopping for the items on my lists.  I also have lists of ideas and thoughts that come to me.  For example, while watching volunteers put up a display for the Wildlife Refuge Center, I came up with several ideas for displays and interactive games for those displays, and I had to write them down, lest I lose them forever.  I have a list of topics I want to discuss on my blog.  I have a huge list of books I want to read this year, 30 titles total, and all of my titles organized by categories: writing, leisure, professional, nature/conservation, eating/food, and fitness.

But what I want to bring up is a couple of more profound and personal lists.  One of my disappointments from 2015 is that I feel like I’ve slipped back closer to my original body condition, before I started my journey into fitness.  I know I haven’t fallen that far, but it feels like it, so one list I’m going to share with everyone is “The Things I Was Doing in 2014 That Helped Me Lose Weight”.10toscale

  • Regular structured workouts
  • Logged my food diligently and religiously
  • Eating way fewer calories
    • egg substitutes
    • fat free products
    • low fat processed deli meat
  • Drinking plenty of “water” with Crystal Light
  • Drinking protein shakes
  • Used a heart rate monitor for working out
  • Had an active job along with working out
  • Had much more accountability with friends at the gym and a personal trainer
  • Taking diet supplements
  • Had a contest/challenge that I really wanted to win

Some of these I have stopped doing because while they helped me lose weight, they were not sustainable options.  I don’t eat fat-free products like cheese, milk, or butter.  I don’t usually eat processed deli meat, eating more fresh turkey or chicken.  And I definitely don’t drink Crystal Light anymore.  I don’t take the same supplements anymore, and I don’t drink as many protein shakes anymore.  I used to wear a heart rate monitor, but after discovering my heart rate is incredibly light and sometimes isn’t picked up, I quit using it.  I don’t belong to a gym, nor do I have tons of friends to workout with, so I’ve lost a lot of motivational support.  And while I log my food, I am not as diligent or fanatical about making sure I log EXACTLY what I ate.  So, I’m trying to figure out how to maintain the right healthy habits and establish new practices to get results like I did in 2014.  We will have to continue this discussion down the road.

The other list I want to share with you are my goals, hopes, and dreams for 2016, my Bucket List, if you will.

  • Get my Certificate for Personal Training
  • Write “Poach Eggs, Not Rhinos”, my conservation cookbook
  • Write “Keeping Fit the Zookeeper Way” (working title, still figuring it out)
  • Present one or more of my programs at a conference or public forum
  • Build a network of writers to help motivate me
  • Start up a bootcamp to get other followers of EarthFit and keep motivation alive
  • Finish 100 Ways of EarthFit completely without missing a day
  • Write an article on EarthFit for professional journal or (dream big or go home) a major magazine
  • Achieve my 250 hours of volunteering at National Wildlife Refuge
  • Be back to 22% body fat in time for AAZK Conference in September

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I’m already off to a fairly decent start, considering it’s only February, and I’ve actually been able to check one item off.  I finished my Personal Training exam last Friday, so I’m thrilled to check that off.  I’m well on my way to completing 250 hours at the refuge, and even though this is only Day 1, I feel I’m motivated and committed to completing this challenge with flying colors.

I have many tools to help me accomplish these goals.  My good friend, Stephanie, gave me one of the best presents this year, a Passion Planner.  If you are unfamiliar with Passion Planners, check out their website and see if there is something perfect for your passion!  Along with my lists, I’m ready to storm the castle and win my treasure!

passion planner

How are you going to take this year by the horns?