And just like that, we’ve wrapped up 2018. Just wanted to pop on the blog here and wish you all a happy holiday season and a happier new year! I hope you’ve had a chance to indulge and spend time with your loved ones during this holiday season and that the new year will bring you more joy / happiness and things to conquer!
I always like to use this opportunity to quickly recap the year and outline a few goals I’d like to accomplish in the new year. I’ve always believed that change needs to be constant – you don’t need to wait until 1/1/2019 to kick off your New Year’s resolution. In fact, whenever I set a specific date to start a new goal, inevitably, I’ll fall off the bandwagon in 2-3 weeks’ time. The mindset change to see each resolution as a gradual lifestyle change has been what made those goals more sustainable and enduring!
Recapping 2018 – Goals that I Accomplished
I have a list of 7 items I wanted to accomplish during the year, and I was glad to tackle 4 of them, and turned them into a new lifestyle. There’s still more work to do but since these lifestyle changes are things I don’t have to actively think about and they feel more habitual, I feel I can focus on the others and new ones for the year!
1. F45 Fitness Routine: Sticking with a Regular Workout Routine
This is one of those situations where I felt on social media, it looked like I got a head start to my 2019 resolution but in reality, it took me 11 months to work up the courage to establish a routine! Joking aside, this year I felt really proud in what I’ve accomplished fitness-wise, and the fact that I’ve made it habitual.
I started 2018 with mostly at-home workout with Fitness Blender. I’m a huge fan of their workout programs (You can buy them under $20 each – not sponsored by the way – I’ve purchased 4 programs so far!) which you can reuse and track on a daily basis. I regularly did 1-hour strength training at home until April, finishing two rounds of both the Flex and Booty programs (8 weeks with 1-1.5 hour workout 3x a week). That felt really good! The summer was where I stopped being as dedicated – a combination of work travel, personal travel to Cambodia/Thailand and just the summer season making it all sweaty and sticky really demotivated me.
It wasn’t until the beginning of November that I started going to the gym regularly again and this time, I stuck with it. I decided to start with the F45 gym which has been popping up everywhere. To be frank, I found this gym through a couple of people I know from Cape Town but this gym has been transformational for me.
I have been working out up to 5-6x a week (Usually when I can’t make 1 day, I’ll do a second round on another day) which is a dedication I’ve never been able to build up when training on my own. The combination of having a small community, and being in a fresh new hell every single workout kept me coming back.
The reason I go back so frequently, aside from the workouts and community, is the fact that you build up endurance quickly (and can lose it just as quickly if you skip too many classes). I graduated from lifting 5kg on my first 2-3 weeks to 10-15kg in 4-6 week’s time. I even have (good) dreams about this workout! Follow me on Instastories where I repost and reshare some photos from those workout sessions!
2. Read 15 New Books
I’ve been tracking the books I’m reading over on Goodreads, which helps me track which books I want to purchase or re-read. I set up a stretch goal of reading 25 books over on Goodreads as I know that I can almost easily crush my initial goal. I’m currently reading 2 books so I’m hoping I’ll actually finish the read with 23 books rather than the 22 on the Goodreads right now.
I find having a Goodreads account help me keep track of the recommended reading list I often peruse and because I’m not always buying the book I see on the list, it’s kept those impulse book purchases to a minimum. If you’re interested in books I’ve read this year, head over to my Goodreads account. Of all the books I read this year, my most recommended read are: Israel: A Concise History of a Nation Reborn by Daniel Gordis, Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by John Carreyrou and Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom.
3. Save, save, save!
I am thrilled that I crushed my savings goal by over $7K beyond my initial target. I kept my spending to a minimum most of the year and fell a little sideways just after my birthday and around the holidays. It definitely could have gone much better but I’m not too worried about my overspend in the last few months of the year as I’m confident I’ll get things back in order for the new year!
4. Visited 3 More Countries This Year
Ireland, Turkey, and Cambodia got me to 33 countries of solo travel! I’m pretty stoked to have had the opportunity to travel with my family to Asia (Although I spent most of the time travelling solo!) mainly Thailand and Cambodia. I’ve even inspired my younger sister to travel solo – she went to Boston for a 4-day trip recently and figured out the public transit / transfers, etc on her own! I couldn’t be more proud and I feel like a proud mama hen!
Turkey and Ireland were a bit of a surprise trip of the year – they were booked very last minute, mostly because I saw a cheap flight from Toronto to Dublin ($305) and it costed just a little under $300 to fly round-trip to Turkey from Dublin via Paris. Given how insanely picturesque Turkey is, it will come as no surprise to anyone that my top 9 posts on Instagram were somewhat related to Turkey as you can see below!
Leave me a comment if you have a blog post on your 2018 accomplishments/2019 goals! Otherwise, I’d love to hear what you’ve been up to this past year!
Wishing you all a very safe and happy holidays!