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#30DaysofDope is DONE! Here's What I Learned.

5:35 PM

Day 30/30!
There's nothing more gratifying than starting something and seeing it through to completion. Especially for someone like me - a chronic starter. Ok, #TruthTellingTime I, Christina Patrice am a chronic starter. I'm super awesomely great at having cool ideas, brainstorming, plotting, planning, and strategizing around those ideas. I'm totally a launch person. But I'm a terrible finisher. About halfway through, I start losing steam, or in true Christina Patrice fashion, I get distracted by another idea.

But with #30DaysofDope I challenged myself - not just to be a finisher, but finish in the best possible way. I took my weak points head on for 30 days straight, and emerged a better person for it. For each area of dopeness that I challenged myself to, I'm gonna share the ups, downs, and the ultimate lesson I learned.

Oh, and if you missed this cycle of #30DaysofDope, don't worry. I'll be kicking it off bigger and better in August!

Let's dive in!

Spiritually Dope Update
The single best part of being spiritually dope is that indescribable peace that comes from being connected to God. Not that I walked through the past 30 days with ease (that's hardly the case), but that even in my low moments, even in my frustrations, I didn't feel hopeless. I didn't feel stuck. And that feeling - more than anything else, is invaluable. For the first half of #30DaysofDope, I read The Power of Being Thankful devotional, and I really enjoyed it. For the last few days, I've been reading Lifehacks: Practical Tips for Godly Habits and it's been nothing short of amazing. Did you know that sleep was a spiritual activity?! That lesson alone blew my mind. If you have the app (and I'm sure you do, because everybody and they mama does), open YouVersion and check for Lifehacks under plans, or just click here via desktop.

Read the devotion on sleep. It'll blow your mind.
Did I journal every day like I set out to? No. Did I embark on a more intentional relationship with God? Absolutely. Did I live out Matthew 5:16? I tried - and I still am trying. Because ultimately, none of this is about me. It's about God's glory.

Physically Dope Update
Pardon me for a moment while I feel myself. When it comes to physical dopeness, I crushed it. Like, I'm legitimately proud of myself. I set goals - to do 4 days of cardio and strength training, with 1 day of "other" activity per week. I didn't do much "othering", but I did crush the gym 5 days a week, every week. And I've got the MyFitnessPal records to prove it. Physically, I'm stronger. My endurance is improving. I can even run HIIT sprints a lil' faster (I'm maxing at 7mph without feeling like I'm about to pass out, fall, or break my ankles). As I type this post, I'm sore as heck from yesterday's upper body workout, but I love the feeling.

As promised, some before and after realness.
When I looked at this picture of myself before #30DaysofDope (its from a month before I started the challenge...but there's no difference in my appearance from May to June), I was little disappointed at first. I thought to myself - in two months, I don't look that different. But then I realized three very important things. One - that major changes take time. Two - I did #30DaysofDope not as some quick transformation gimmick, but to start building out the habit of personal excellence. Three - the biggest changes are the ones unseen.The physical changes will come, no doubt...as long as I keep those three things at the forefront of my mind.

Dope Eating Update
About halfway through #30DaysofDope, I had a realization. I'm not about that #mealprep life. Because I follow a lot of fitness related people and pages, my explore feed on Instagram is often inundated with 4x5 grids of transparent containers with chicken breasts, asparagus, and sweet potatoes. Yo, get it how you live. I'm not knocking you. But I'm not that girl. I can barely have the same meal for dinner two nights in a row, let alone 7 days a week. But then I realized, when it came to food, I just needed to make sure I was making the best possible decisions for my meals. That meant taking the foods I like and making them macro-friendly. Same for desserts.
Clockwise: baked chicken wings, clean-ish cornbread, kale with smoked turkey, and red beans (rice optional). #macrofriendly
Full transparency moment: I don't know everything there is to know about macros. I learned how to count them, but really at this point in my journey I'm like the kid in Algebra II with the TI-83 calculator (#highschoolmemories) - relying on technology to do the work for me. I lean heavy on MyFitnessPal, but for this first phase of my journey, that's okay. Again, building out habits. Weighing food. Calculating macros and calories for recipes I create. Drinking lots of water. Taking my vitamins. Drinking my protein. My goal going forward is to create some hybrid of clean eating/iffym (if it fits your macros) that helps me look good, feel good, and that tastes good.

My next post on 30daysofdope.com will be about the vitamins and supplements that I've been taking that have been suuuuper clutch for me. I'll also be sharing some macro-friendly recipes and food swaps. Stay tuned for those!

Mentally Dope Update
During the course of #30DaysofDope I had one major revelation, and I shared it in my last update. In case you missed it, that revelation was this: excellence is relative. One day, excellence can mean waking up at 6am and running two miles before work. Another day, excellence is simply the act of even showing up to work because you're exhausted (mentally or physically). The major key I learned was not to beat myself up over the shifting in levels of "accomplishment". If I could look at myself and say, I did my best, then I did my best. End of story.

And if it wasn't my best? I still did better by admitting that to myself, instead of pretending like it was. Either way, it's a win.

Overall, I had a great experience with #30DaysofDope. Was it as miraculously transformative as I had hoped? No. But am I a better person than I was 30 days ago? Absolutely. Like I said before, if you missed the boat this go-round, be sure you visit www.30daysofdope.com and get on the e-mail list, so you don't miss the August launch.

Me and my frenemy, the stairmaster.
If you joined me for #30DaysofDope, drop me an e-mail at christina@30daysofdope.com. I want to hear from you about how it went!

Catch up on #30DaysofDope here:
#30DaysofDope: Challenging Myself to be My Best Self
Week 1 Update
Weeks 2 & 3 Update

Don't forget to follow my dedicated Instagram @30daysofdope and use the hashtag #30daysofdope!

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