My resolutions for 2016: The year-end assessment

It is the end of 2016 and time to look back at the resolutions I made for myself this year. How did I fare? Not so well.

1. Drop below 175 pounds.
Ha! That did not happen. I got nowhere close to 175. Looking back through my calendar, where I record my weight every Friday morning, the lowest my scale read all year was 188.6.

Pathetic. I weighed 195.6 on January 1 (a Friday) and weighed 197.2 yesterday. The silver lining, though, is that I mostly maintained the same weight. I may not have lost any weight, but I also did not gain a ton, either. And that, I suppose, is no small feat, especially for me.

The most I have ever weighed was 263 back in January 2003. It took a long time, but I shed most of that weight and have even dipped below 180 at times. Regardless, it takes a concerted effort to keep off all that weight. Why? Because my body naturally wants to return to 263. Though I can’t explain the physiology behind it, when one balloons to gigantic proportions and then loses as ton of weight, one’s body wants to return to being gigantic. My instinct is to eat uncontrollably, so I need to keep it in check — every day. Sometimes I do an excellent job, but other times I don’t.

Did I do a good job in 2016? I guess, but not good enough since I want and should weigh less than I do now.

2. Continue strengthening my legs and strengthen my core.
I did do this. Though I still have not joined a gym, I have strengthened my legs and core a lot thanks to physical therapy and exercises that corrected a painful pelvic issue.

3. Get a passport.
Once again, I failed to get a passport. In defense, I once again had no need to do so because I did not travel abroad.

4. Visit a state I have never been to before.
Despite the fact I drove through seven states during my swing through the west in March, I did not visit a single state I had never visited before in 2016. I did not even make a daytrip to the nearest state I have yet to visit: South Dakota.

5. Take the next step career-wise.
I still have yet to take that step, but it is an ongoing effort that will need to happen in 2017. I thought a lot about what that next step should be, applied for a couple jobs, and even had a promising interview. The ball is rolling and will roll into 2017.

6. Take a vacation.
What is a vacation, anyway? Is it an extended time off from work? If that’s the definition of a vacation, then I did not take a vacation in 2016. However, I did enjoy my trip out west. My visit to SoCal and time in the Phoenix area to take in a couple spring training games was very relaxing and enjoyable. But I continued working. #Fail.

7. Watch more sunsets.
Speaking of definitions, what exactly do I mean by watching sunsets? I mean sitting down to purposefully observe and admire the sun’s slow dip to the horizon. I did that once in 2016. I doubt I watched it once in 2015, so I technically did watch more in 2016. However, I should have watched many more.

8. Run a 10k.
Though I did not run any organized races, I did run 10 kilometers multiple times late this year as part of the 13-week run-walk program.

9. Don’t be a “yes” man.
Unfortunately, I continued to be a “yes” man in 2016.

10. Don’t think so much — just do it.
Likewise, I continued to think too much in 2016.

11. Just say it.
I didn’t.

12. Write a novel.
Nope. I started writing a novel, then took a break that has gone on and on and on…

13. Get up at or before 6:30 a.m. every weekday.
I accomplished this resolution quite often. In fact, I developed a cherished, weekday routine of rising at 6 a.m. to read the paper and drink a cup of tea. It is a peaceful and relaxing way to start the day, and I miss that me time when I sleep in or am unable to do it.

14. Continue learning German.
I continued learning German with Duolingo in 2016. How much progress have I made? Probably not much. I’m still stumbling through the basics, but have continued to learn vocab and try understanding the different cases and when/how to use them. At one point, I even started brushing off my French with Duolingo. Though that effort fell to the wayside, I should pick it up again in 2017.

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