The skinny rules: the simple, nonnegotiable principles for getting to thinBob Harper; Ballantine Books 2012WorldCatLibraryThingGoogle BooksBookFinder 

I have been trying to use the fitness journal to reach my fitness and weight loss goals for the year. I haven’t been successful. But the maker of the journal sent me an email — that making two emails that have caused me to take action in as many days — about a Facebook group and 21 day challenge, beginning on September 1st.

Sounds just like what I need.

We’re about the move into the Holiday Grand Plan, 4th Quarter is around the corner, and my needlework, music, and charity work are all planned out for the rest of the year. This will round out the season.

The leader of the challenge suggests the book The Skinny Rules. I would never have looked at this book. I don’t want to be skinny. But it has a set of rules which can be my next group of habits:

  1. Drink a glass of water before each meal. I don’t know that this is going to do much, but it’s easy and will help with hydration.
  2. Don’t drink your calories. Another easy one.
  3. Eat protein at every meal. I already do this, too.
  4. Slash refined flours and grains. Done. If I need to do more, I know this will be a step in the right direction.
  5. Eat 30-50 grams of fiber a day. I don’t count, but I’m willing to. With all the fruit and veg I eat, I bet this will be easy.
  6. Eat apples and berries every day. I already have berries for breakfast each day, and I like apples.
  7. No carbs after lunch. I assume he doesn’t mean kale. This could be the compromise between abstention and moderation I’ve been thinking about.
  8. Learn to read food labels. I think I’m good on this.
  9. Perfect portion size. I don’t think about this at all, so this could be a good step forward.
  10. No added sweeteners. Time to give up sugar.
  11. No white potatoes. Sigh.
  12. One meatless day each week. This is distinctly unappealing.
  13. Get rid of fast foods and fried foods. Done.
  14. Eat a real breakfast. I already do this one.
  15. Eat at least 10 meals a week at home. I already am committed to home cooking and rarely have more than one or two meals out each week.
  16. Banish high-salt foods. I don’t use salt and eat few prepared foods. This should be easy.
  17. Eat your vegetables. I’ve got this one.
  18. Go to bed hungry. I’m spotty on this one; it’ll be a good habit to establish.
  19. Sleep right. I’m not sure what this one means.
  20. Plan one splurge meal a week. Sunday lunch?

I’ve downloaded the book to my Kindle. I’ve also bolded the ones I think may be hard. I will try to add them into my habit collection by September 1st. The bolded ones may take longer.

I also received in the mail a copy of Packworld which included six “ultra productive” habits:

  1. Schedule actions on your calendar. I do that.
  2. Focus on only one thing. No multitasking, no long to-do lists.
  3. Avoid meetings. Obviously, I do that.
  4. Process email only a few times a day. I need to work on this one.
  5. Theme days of the week. I do this.
  6. Practice a consistent morning routine. I do this, too.
  7. Energy is everything. That is, don’t give up on sleep, breaks, meals, or exercise in the pursuit of productivity. You’re less productive when you don’t take care of and fuel your body.

So I have a bunch of new habits to work on for the fall and winter, as well as a nice long list of projects. Sounds good.