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Here's to a Happy New year to a new you
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Great Bend Tribune Managing Editor Dale Hogg and his wife, Volunteers in Action Volunteer Coordinator Linn Hogg, have embarked on this two-month lifestyle change experiment as a couple. This is their final update on how it all went.

The holidays have come and gone and I am proud to say, so has some of the weight. I hope some of the bad habits have gone also. This last two months have made me very aware of how complacent I had become and how much work I still have ahead of me.
I think dieting is a word that should be deleted from our vocabulary. In our minds, it stands for depriving ourselves of anything we enjoy.  We have convinced our society that if we do not look like the catalog model, then we should be eating celery sticks and drinking diet water. We should be toting good eating, good habits and exercise.
What have I learned or at least put back into my everyday life? Drink water, lots of water, and if you can’t remember to, set a timer. Eat breakfast, anything to get your metabolism going, and coffee doesn’t count. Don’t forget to eat and make meals with protein, vegetables and fruit. Limit your caffeine. Keep cutting your sweet or fat intake in half. If you normally eat 1/6th  piece of pie, make it a 1/12th piece.
And don’t forget to move. Exercise at least 30 minutes a day. This is above and beyond what is normal for you. I still am working this into my routine.
But the two most important things about getting healthy are not loose faith when you fall back into old habits and ask a friend or family member to join you in this new lifestyle. I am so happy that my husband is always there cheering me on and consoling me when I lose faith.
Thanks to everyone that stopped me and said they had been reading. I appreciate you taking this journey with us. I hope you find the courage to get off the diet rollercoaster and start down the healthy road.
Happy New Year!

Well, this marks the final installment of this two-month journey, or experiment if you will, to kick-start a healthier lifestyle. We set out just before Thanksgiving, went through Christmas and wrapped up at New Year’s, knowing we’d be embarking on this trek during the most difficult time of year to do much of anything healthy.
First, it’s slick, wet and cold outside, hindering outdoor exercise. Staring at the flat screen with earbuds on the stationary bike at the gym is not the same as cruising the back roads on two wheels.
Second, the food. During the holidays, food (not the good-for-you veggie, low-fat kind, but the sugary, fat-laden, calorie heavy kind) is omnipresent. It is at parties, family gatherings and in the office break room.
To be honest, I don’t think I lost that much weight over the past two months. I don’t think I kicked that many bad habits, either.
But, don’t read this as a failure. I learned a great deal.
Through this sojourn, I’ve been forced to take a closer look myself and my lifestyle choices.
Also, I realized I am not in this alone.
My wife and I did this together. We now find ourselves helping each other to keep our hands out of the cookie jar, or questioning each other about taking a big serving or seconds.
I want to thank the community as a whole, as well. Since we went public with this, I’ve had my figurative hand slapped by loyal readers over ordering fast food or not riding my bike.
Talk about accountability.
I have been an exercise nut for years, but this ordeal has pointed out my shortcomings in this arena. I am now committed to taking part in a group weight-loss program through Club 1 Fitness.
Again, we don’t have to do this alone.
I am actually excited and reinvigorated about this new challenge. It would be interesting to come back in a year’s time to see where we are then.
I hope many of you have been inspired to start your own journey. If so, good luck and Happy New Year.