Coffee Talk


Despite wholeheartedly agreeing with this post on Robb Wolf’s site this morning — which in some ways says, HEY! Make sure the act of goal setting helps you actually focus on what’s important, rather than focusing on the idea of achieving the goal (which HELLO can cause stress) — I am still doing some day-dreaming about what I want to accomplish in 2013.

It’s a sickness I have (you’re all well aware of this if you have been around here any length of time) and while I definitely sometimes struggle with focusing on achievement and bottom line instead of what’s actually important, there is a part of me that really loves the big picture planning part of setting some annual intentions.

(Worth noting: I am not actually setting any goals or making lists or being a complete loon about it…I’m just marinating, which I actually kind of love to do.)

The point of bringing all of this up though is that I thought some of you might be marinating too. Maybe you don’t even realize it, between the holiday hullabaloo and everyday life and normal commitments, but maybe just maybe, you have some goals or thoughts or wishes or dreams sitting in the back of your head that you would like see happen in 2013 too. In the spirit of friends helping friends, I thought I’d suggest some virtual coffee talk.

(mmmm…coffee. I’m not doing SUPER well on the coffee moderation by the way, but that’s probably a whole other post. ha!)

Anyway, while I would not call myself an expert on much — being stubborn, bossy and consistently talking at a volume that is inappropriate come to mind instantly — I do have lots of thoughts in my head, and a complete lack of shame at sharing my own opinions.

(Who even invited her? All she does is talk!)

So I thought I would offer this up for those of you who are interested: Between now and the end of the year, if you have a question, concern or situation that you would like me to weigh in on (Maybe something that will help you plan or crush some of your 2013 goals, maybe something you are just curious about, maybe a topic I have written about here but that you would like a follow up on or more details) let me know. You can either leave it in the comments, or if it is more personal and long winded, feel free to shoot me an email {{ hawoodcock at gmail dot com }} I will try and have my responses show up in a blog post near you, and hey if we have enough questions maybe we will make it a regular feature. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves, because what if nobody has any questions. THAT WOULD BE EMBARRASSING. HEH.

In case you would like a place to start, here are some of the things that I feel pretty confident giving endless opinons about:

*Strategies for Going Paleo
*Talking About CrossFit
*Harnessing Motivation
*Time Management
*Getting Creative Goals Off The Ground
*Setting Goals in General
*Losing Weight

But as I mentioned above, feel free to hit me up about anything. Consider me your own personal Internet Dear Abby. I’m always interested in what readers want to hear more about and I’m definitely game to share my thoughts if you think they would help you out in a particular instance.

So talk to me folks. What is on your mind. Let’s have a cup of coffee and chat, shall we?

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26 comments to Coffee Talk

  • Caity @ Moi Contre La Vie
    November 8, 2012 at 9:16 am

    Such a fun idea! I can’t wait to read all of your advice. :)

  • Mallory
    November 8, 2012 at 9:17 am

    I like this idea. I like coffee, too!

    PLEASE tell me how to manage my time! My problem is a mixture of not managing time and not being motivated. I do get my stuff done when it needs to be done, but I waste so much time browsing the internet and tinkering around (I’m always just going to look at one more page in my reader.) I would love to know how to get motivated to get up and get dressed and get out of the house on those days when I need to run errands, instead of messing around for 2 hours beforehand. And have you talked about how you find time to blog? My poor little blog is so neglected and unloved.

    • Mariah B
      November 12, 2012 at 5:13 pm

      Yes, please! Mallory, I feel like you looked into my head and wrote down all my deep dark secrets. I’m ashamed to admit how much time I spend online! My motivation is seriously lacking!

  • Jill
    November 8, 2012 at 9:45 am

    Coconut water! I feel like you might have addressed this but I can’t recall. But, I’ve tried a couple brands and HATED them. Which ones are the tastiest??
    Not the most interesting topic, I know. I’ll keep thinking… :)

  • Andrea
    November 8, 2012 at 10:05 am

    Love this idea! I have two things I would be interested in hearing your thoughts on.

    The first is more general and has to do with FOLLOW THROUGH. I’m great at setting goals and starting projects, but once I get over the initial enthusiasm, I get so bogged down in doubt and details that I end up abandoning that project in favour of something that’s still new and shiny. Case in point: the thing I want most in the world is to write a novel. And every time I get about 25-30000 words in, I decide it’s utter crap, and oh, I have this other idea that’s just SO MUCH better, I’ll just work on that instead. But of course, the same thing happens with that idea — so it’s obviously not the ‘idea’s’ fault, it’s something in me that makes me abandon them. I want to stop doing this!!

    The second thing is a bit more specific — it’s about how to find moderation in paleo. I really like eating paleo / primal, and feel great when I do it. However. I do great when I’m ‘on’, but when I go ‘off’ I go SO TOTALLY OFF. I did a Whole30 in the summer, where I lost 10 lbs — and then immediately gained TWENTY pounds in the next 8 weeks. (And I know it’s not all about weight, but I’m mentioning that as quantifiable proof of how bad I am at finding middle ground.) You seem to do well with having occasional ‘treats’ (bread, sugar, alcohol, etc.) and not letting it throw you into a crazy three month long binge. Please share your tips!

  • Lizzie
    November 8, 2012 at 10:21 am

    I would LOVE to hear about Strategies for Going Paleo – I really want to try it, but I don’t know the best way to start, other than just jumping in head first, which would probably make me overwhelmed and I would burn out. How did you first start? Did you ease your way into it? Etc! Great idea to do a Dear Holly =)

    • Harmony
      November 8, 2012 at 2:25 pm

      Hi Lizzie – Not trying to hijack Holly’s blog but what worked for me was easing in. First I cut out all wheat/gluten and worked on meals that excluded anything with wheat/gluten. Then sugar, and lastly grains/dairy. I found taking small steps and not doing more until I was comfortable made it achievable and helped me develop recipes that I could rely on. Another idea is going paleo by meal. Maybe start with paleo breakfasts (or lunch or dinner) each day and work up to all meals. A Whole30 all or nothing approach works for some, but sometimes easing in will make it more sustainable.

      • Lizzie
        November 8, 2012 at 3:18 pm

        Thank you, Harmony!! That is an awesome suggestion, I think easing in is definitely a great idea for some! I will try it for sure.

      • Miso B
        November 9, 2012 at 8:58 am

        I second Harmony’s approach – we went as a family to a gluten free diet for a few months then switched to paleo. We’re still not 100% on either – more like 90% GF & 75% paleo, but still better than processed food for every meal! Also, some of the tenants of Paleo are easy to incorporate – grass fed meat, a lot more veggies & greens, etc. Sorry for the hijack Holly!

  • Stephanie
    November 8, 2012 at 10:34 am

    I want to do crossfit but there is no gym here, boooo. Do you have any DIY ideas or resources?

  • Miriel
    November 8, 2012 at 11:17 am

    I have a question, but it is sort of…involved. I will do my best to make myself clear but let me know if it doesn’t make any sense.

    Okay so. I am really attracted to some of the aspects of CrossFit. I like the fact that it seems to be a really robust community; I like that it seems to be varied and interesting; I like that it seems to be effective (and doesn’t take a ton of time); I like the approach to fitness that embraces strength and ability and power rather than playing on people’s insecurities and trying to convince them that they should all be skinnier (I’m thinking Jillian Michaels here in particular but it’s a pretty rampant attitude in our culture).

    So all of that seems great. I’m hesitant, though, mostly because of some of the stuff I’ve seen–particularly among elite/competitive CrossFitters–about “mind over matter” and “conquering your body” and stuff like that. I do believe in mental discipline and I know (from years of ballet, and yoga, and running, etc etc) that there is a mental barrier you have to cross in order to get stronger and better. I’m okay with the concept of pushing yourself. BUT. I am also concerned about cultivating an attitude that seems to set my mind AGAINST my body, as if they were two totally distinct entities that had different goods to pursue. It has taken me a long time to get to a place where I don’t feel like my mind and my body are enemies, and I’m not sure where the CrossFit experience/mentality fits into continuing to foster that balanced, healthy approach instead of putting stress on it.

    That is a loooong question. But I would just love to hear your thoughts on how to reconcile the idea of training your mind (this is the whole “your mind always threatens to give out before your body does” thing) with an approach to yourself as a whole person, that doesn’t destroy the idea of mind/body UNITY.

    Does that make…any sense at all?

    • Meg
      November 9, 2012 at 8:44 am

      I second this. I hated gym class in school and was never interested in sports. I’m not really competitive by nature (at least not athletically) and I also hate to run. But for some reason, I’m strangely attracted to Cross Fit. I have a good functional fitness routine going on and I’m pretty active, but Cross Fit still scares the crap out of me/intrigues me.

      • Mariah B
        November 12, 2012 at 5:11 pm

        I was the choir nerd/artist/bookworm in high school… and died every time we ran the mile in gym. Really, I thought, is that a test of physical fitness?!

        I also hated to run, hated every idea of physical exercise, and despised sweating. I wasn’t competitive at all athletically.

        But then I had a weight problem to deal with, so I turned to lifting/CrossFit/training, and as the fat started switching places with muscle, a few funny things happened. A new confidence. An appreciation for my growing ability. Soon, I realized that my deadlift numbers were higher than some others. Oo. Well that’s neat. Then I saw I could do a few unassisted pullups. Not too shabby. Then I realized my Fran time desperately needed help. Stupid thrusters.

        And then I was hooked.

        My advice is to just try it. 1x a week or 2x a week to get started. Let yourself recover from each workout fully so you don’t start injuring yourself like I did after only a year into it.

        And Meg, what scares and intrigues you is definitely something you should try… 😉

        Sorry for the blog hack, Holly!

  • Shannon
    November 8, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    I’m in college and I live in a house with 5 roommates who eat a LOT of delicious grains and sugar, and it’s SO hard for me to stick to even 90% paleo (I let myself drink and have a treat or two on the weekends or in social situations). I have a really hard time cheating in moderation. Does that make sense? If I even have one little cheat, I have a tendency to just throw the whole day away and go crazy. Or rather than just having a piece of pizza, I have 7 (not an exaggeration). Just some good motivation or ideas for “good cheats” that actually satisfy cravings or ideas you use to stop yourself from totally binging.

  • calves
    November 8, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    So much fun!! Yes Yes goal setting and follow through :) And TIME MANAGEMENT – like Mallory and Andrea said.
    Miriel such a good topic for discussion!! I’m sure I have lots to say on that too. Just need to manage my time to get it out there 😛

  • mellissa@ibreatheimhungry
    November 9, 2012 at 5:48 am

    Dear Holly,

    Running! Used to do it, loved it, best shape of my life, etc. Stopped because of an injury that has long healed (it’s been about 6 years) but now I want to start up again but I always talk myself out of it (how will I find the time, where will I run, etc.) I just need to stop with the excuses and START RUNNING! But also because there are a lot of people out there who are intimidated by running and have never known the joy and simplicity of it once you start. I’m inspired by your recent half marathon which I never had the guts to do. Can you share (or re-share) how you got started and help inspire those of us who either want to restart, or have never tried it because they were too intimidated? (schedules, tips, etc.)


    Needs to get off the couch in SC

  • Tammy
    November 9, 2012 at 5:58 am

    First I have to admit that I totally got a good laugh from your “Goals” graphic #1 Get some….I really thought you meant “get some” & I ain’t talkin goals!!!!

  • Stephanie
    November 9, 2012 at 6:47 am

    How do I respond to a family who is VERY entrenched in the low-fat phenomenon, in particular, a mother who is convinced I’m going to die before 30 because I eat red meat. I’ve tried science and I’ve tried telling her how much better I feel, but I just can’t seem to get her off my back. Eating with her has become torture, for serious.

    • noblepower
      November 12, 2012 at 3:55 pm

      I second this topic – only my Low-Fat beliver is my husband who, despite acknowledging my 15 pound weight loss and the disappearance of my headaches and stomach pain, still thinks paleo is a crazy fad diet.

  • Maureen
    November 9, 2012 at 11:43 am

    We are in Day 19 of our first Whole 30, and finishing up the Tuesday before Thanksgiving. So, I guess my question is, how did it go for you adding things back into your eating plan? I know you touched on it a bit in your posts, but any clear concise tips for what worked for you AFTER the Whole 30 would be much appreciated. We are doing great by the way, feeling very good. My husband, who carries all his weight in his stomach, looks so much smaller, people are really starting to notice! I just tried on a pair of jeans that were super tight before, I got them buttoned no problem. Thanks Holly, for once again inspiring us to do something healthy!

  • Denise
    November 9, 2012 at 2:18 pm

    This post could not have come at a better time. I am in the middle of writing up birthday goals for myself and have reevaluated them based on the site you referenced. Hooray!

  • Emily
    November 10, 2012 at 10:25 am

    Hi Holly — any advice you would have about writing a dissertation (or really any long writing project) would be much appreciated. I love your site!

  • Arlene @Adventures in Weight Loss
    November 13, 2012 at 10:46 pm

    Hi, Holly. I’d also like to hear about your strategies for going paleo. After a fairly successful Whole30, I’ve have a lot less success doing straight paleo … can’t seem to give up dairy (specifically, low-ish carb Frappuccinos made with heavy cream and sugar free syrup). Don’t tell me to just avoid Starbucks, because that’s where I get my best writing done.

    Harnessing motivation and losing weight are other topics I’d love to hear your thoughts on.





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