Setting the Tone

I’ve felt it. You’ve felt it. We’ve all felt it.

The jubilation of Friday evening. The weekend is upon us! 48 hours filled with possibility, relaxation (sometimes), fun times, family and friends.

This excitement is quickly cut off once Sunday evening approaches. You mean this is not in fact a permanent vacation?

But my house is finally clean! My laundry is done! I don’t want to actually wear any of it, since I worked so hard to get it all completely clean, but I can revel in the fact that it’s done! Finito. The dishes, the bathrooms, and the carpets too. Actually the latter is Shaun’s job, but still.

You mean I actually have financial responsibilities that I can’t abandon? But I thought my time watching Bethenny Ever After and Toy Story 3 for the second time were completely worthy of my full-time attention.

Almost on the same level as my day job, no?

And that bottle of wine, platter of cheese and crackers, cupcake and everything bagel actually have calories in them? Calories that, in fact, count toward that growing number on the scale?


Oh, I see.

I hope I’m not alone in my feelings at the end of a weekend. I just love that free feeling! I still manage to get myself to the gym (in even more intense workouts since I typically have more free time to spend at the gym) or attend family parties, dentist appointments or other activities (that may or may not be so fun...hello DMV!). But I love that I decide how I spend that time.

Once Monday rolls around, my plan is to always psych myself up for a good Monday. After all, just as Friday evening is the beginning of the weekend, Monday is the beginning of the week. And a long one at that. I think that Monday sets the tone for the rest of the week.

Feeling Sluggish
There is nothing that I hate more than starting off the week feeling sluggish. If I feel unrefreshed on Monday, then I spend the morning downing coffee, trying to hide my yawns, and daydreaming about when I get to go back to sleep that night. I’d rather be excited about all that I have to tackle that day and evening, like putting my best foot forward in my job and spending quality time with Shaun after work, it at the gym, on a date, cooking dinner together or just vegging on the couch. It completely sets the tone for the day, and by extension the entire week.

Bad Eating Habits
Since I typically have poor eating habits on the weekends (something I’m trying to change, but I find this to be hands down the most difficult part of getting to a healthier weight)...

...Monday morning is my chance to change it all. If I started the day with a bagel and cream cheese, well, there goes my day! And it’s harder to get back on the wagon for the week. If I air on the side of healthier eating with a smoothie, a bowl of oatmeal with almonds or an egg on a piece of whole grain toast, I set my tone for the day. Better eating shall follow!

Not Being Active
This goes right along with feeling sluggish. If I feel sluggish, the last thing I want to do it take that half mile walk to work, run up the subway steps instead of walking, or even get myself to the gym pre- or post-work.

If I’m active on Monday, I’ve set the tone for the week that I will be exercising, getting my blood flowing and working on a better me.

It seems like a lot of work to achieve all of this on a Monday. But once you train your mind to start every week with these things in mind, you will have a great way to set your tone for the week!

Get psyched for the week ahead tips
1. Get a good night’s sleep on Sunday night. If you want to sleep in on the weekend, do it up on Saturday. On Sunday, try to get up and get going. That way, once the evening rolls around, you will be appropriately tired. I often struggle with this since Sunday night is still the weekend. I don’t want to go to sleep early! I want to stay up watching my TV shows! But going to sleep by 10:30-11:00 really helps my mood and energy level come Monday morning.

2. Plan workouts for the week. At the very least, I like to have an idea in my head (which sometimes make it onto my calendar) of which days I plan to work out. I may not have my exact workouts planned, but I know when my time will be spent at the gym.

3. Plan out your food for the week. I’m not saying to be a robot, people. We all divulge and indulge and attract a case of lazy. But starting with a meal plan for the week not only alleviates stress, but allows me to look forward to all of my meals since I know what they will be.

I can also control what and how much I eat, if I know what’s already on the menu. I also do my food shopping based on my meal plans.

4. Have something fun to look forward to
. Be it something more extravagant such as going out with friends...

...or a date with your honey, or something low key like ordering dinner, taking a hot bath, and spending time with your Food Network or In Style magazines that somehow have been piling up for the last 2 months with nary a read. These things may seem small, but are so important to set the tone for your week.

So there you have it. The way that I beat those case of the Mondays. Of course, these are adaptable tips and tricks, and clearly there are many Monday mornings when all I want to do is stay tucked in bed with no responsibility for the day, other than to wash my hair. But I think that with some planning and brain training, setting the tone for the week ahead can be easy and fun! What are some of your tips and tricks for getting yourself together for the week ahead?ο»Ώ