#FitbitTheOwl – Taking a hit

(This is the fourth in a continuing series, #FitBitTheOwl.)

An Update

It’s been since last September since I posted about my progress with the perimeter walk – my “backyard fitness plan where the only mirror is a positive attitude!”

When it rains, it pours both figuratively and literally. We had one of the most beautiful falls in recent memory and the perimeter walk with Penny and Barkley was an established habit. The three of us were really enjoying the outdoors, the fall colors, the early sunsets and the fresh air. The daily 2.5 to 3-mile walk was not only refreshing physically but mentally too.

In preparing for winter weather, I purchased new snow boots and snow pants. I was NOT going to let the cold weather and snow keep me from succeeding in my business plan to better fitness in mind, body and spirit. Then it began to rain, and rain, and rain… even the dogs wouldn’t go out with me. I do have a treadmill, but I rationalized myself right out of that boring activity pretty-quickly.

The scariest “rain” storm came late in October when I awoke in the middle of the night in a pool of blood. A medical emergency that caused me to miss a week and a half at work. Nothing like a phone call to your husband, who is out of town on a business trip, informing him to come home immediately to really start thinking about how easy we take our health for granted. A myriad of ultrasounds, CT-scans, and a medical procedure determined it wasn’t cancer, but the surgery would be in my future.

It was difficult to get back into the backyard again walking the perimeter. The dogs missed our time together, but October took a lot out of me.

Then more rain, then snow, and then the holidays. Need I say more?

It’s the new year and back to square one

January turns out to be cold, damp, and rainy. For the love of scotch! We have not seen a winter like this with more rain than snow!

Then it is back to follow up doctor appointments and another doctor referral.

“You have two choices”

After being sick last fall, I thought I had at least maintained my weight, but I was 4 pounds heavier. My primary care physician who gave me the verbal spanking last summer that inspired, The Perimeter Walk, was not pleased. He referred me to a new endocrinologist for a second opinion since he wasn’t so sure my current endo was doing me any favors. (My inner eye roll, “not another doctor.”)

After changing my prescription and talking at length about my health goals, this new endo gave me the same recommendation as my gynecologist last fall. Bariatric surgery. After explaining why some people of have difficulty losing weight than others, he said, “You have two choices.”

“You can continue to be diligent with your diet, portion control, increase your exercise output, and just be happy with the way you are.”


“You can consider Bariatric surgery, more than likely you will be able to decrease your medicine dosage, and lose the weight.”

Decisions, decisions

After discussing with friends and family who have had different types of Bariatric surgery, hearing their stories, a strategic planning session is in order. Two different surgeries for two different potentially long term life-saving consequences.


This post in the “FitbitTheOwl was supposed to be about “The Bonus Plan” where I was to discuss strategic planning for successful results. I didn’t realize that the strategic planning I thought I would be having would involve such considerations.

While research and consider what to do next, if any readers of this post would like to share their stories with me privately or for future posts on Bariatric surgery or how you achieve your health goals, please email me at hoot@thebloggingowl.com or tweet @thebloggingowl. I would love to hear from you.

Until next time!

The Perimeter Walk – “Backyard fitness where the only mirror is a positive attitude!”

© 2015-2017 TheBloggingOwl.com ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

#FitbitTheOwl – The Bonus Plan, Part 1

(This is the third in a continuing series, #FitBitTheOwl.)

Early in my professional career in sales, I joined a financial services company headquartered in a Philadelphia suburb.  Upon my hiring, I along with about 7 other new district managers were sent to headquarters for two weeks for orientation sales training. I was the sole woman in the group and only one of three women in a group of 28 district sales manager nationally for this company.

The sales training manager was pure Philly and ex-military so he was quite full of himself and a task master. Our sales training consisted of 8 hours of being stuck in a windowless conference room with lunch often brought in to our meetings. At the time, I was a vegetarian, which I could tell rankled the training manager a bit since the menus were often limited to pretty much bar food.  Plus, being the only woman in a group of eight, a bit competitive, and single (all of us were in our mid-twenties), I didn’t let his macho persona get to me. He was one of those types that liked to instill fear or “you’re outta here!”

The goal of the sales training was an orientation to their products and services, but mainly to brainwash the district managers into learning  a word-for-word canned sales pitch. At the end of the two-week sales training period, each one of us was to have learned this sales pitch that was 2.5 pages, typed in single space with 1-inch margins. We would present the sales pitch while being videotaped, plus we would be required at the end of the two weeks to write the sales pitch word-for- word including proper punctuation with no errors. “Zero tolerance for errors!”

I went along with the training game, but I knew once I was back in my sales territory that “canned” sales pitch would go right out the window as I drove back to my apartment from the airport. If my new clients were anything like my previous clients, I would be laughed at right out of their office. Yet, I played along because whoever was perfect in rewriting the sales presentation word-for-word, complete with correct punctuation won $100.  It wasn’t much money, but that wasn’t the point. I was the only woman and I wanted to win the prize, dammit!  In fact, I would become only one of three women district sales managers on a team of 28 district sales managers nationally.


Now, why am I telling you this story?

During that two-week sales orientation meeting, there were one or two new district sales managers that didn’t make it to the end of the “Mr. Philly’s” sales training. One of them in particular from New Jersey was scoffing at Mr. Philly’s sales techniques which drew this response, Look in this mirror!  Whadya see??”


(Obviously, Mr. Philly was prepared for a scoffer in the bunch because he held up a small mirror.)

You know what I see??  I see a bad attitude! And none of ya’s are going to be successful with a bad attitude!”

At the end of the two weeks, I did win the $100 bucks. Not because I bought into his sales pitch entirely, but because I had an attitude toward winning. I wanted to prove to Mr. Philly and to the other guys in the group that I was going to beat them, not only in that dank, little conference room but out there in the sales world. And I did. I took an under-performing territory that ranked almost last nationally to third in the country within nine months.

In order to earn the bonus…

Over twenty-five years later, I am putting that same positive attitude into “The Perimeter Walk Business Plan.” #FitbitTheOwl – The Business Plan.  I know my neighbors, friends, family, and perhaps some of my readers think I am a bit nuts, silly, weird, whatever by my backyard perimeter walk and turning the fitness lingo into the sales lingo. I know there have been a few giggles.

But you know what?  I don’t care!

What keeps me motivated is that “before” photo I promised I would reveal when I hit my sales (fitness) goals. I want my husband and sons to be proud of me, but most of all, I want to be proud of me. I want to earn that bonus of a healthier me, and in order to earn my fitness bonuses it starts with that positive attitude Mr. Philly drilled into our sales group all those years ago.

The Tag Line

In almost all fitness gyms there are the dreaded mirrors. Those mirrors are there to help make sure people working out are doing the exercises properly, however, those damn mirrors are what keeps many people from returning to the gym. Who wants to look at themselves in the shape that brought them there in the first place?

But I thought about that mirror Mr. Philly held up in that conference room. I thought about what I saw in my own imaginary mirror. I saw that photo of myself that one day I will have to post here, as I promised, whether I win or lose at this perimeter walk business plan. The only mirror I want in my backyard is an attitude that reflects a winner no matter who giggles at my walking the perimeter every night.

Every business plan, there is a marketing tag line that is supposed to inspire and motivate everyone towards the business plan’s success.  My perimeter walk tag line is this, Backyard fitness where the only mirror reflects a positive attitude.”

Go ahead, giggle…. “but, none of ya’s are gonna believe the ‘after’ photo!”


My next post in this series will be “#FitbitTheOwl – The Bonus Plan, Part 2.”  I will be discussing more of my strategic sales trajectory planning for achieving successful business results.

I will also be updating you on my backyard fitness progress!

“Backyard fitness where the only mirror reflects a positive attitude!”

 © 2015-2016 TheBloggingOwl.com ALL RIGHTS RESERVED


#FitbitTheOwl – The Business Plan

I never quite grasped an effective and consistent diet or exercise plan as an adult. Growing up, I loved playing kickball, softball, gym classes, and in high school I was a majorette in the high school marching band and ran track. I was active and I never thought of those activities as a diet and exercise program.

What I did grasp as an adult was developing sales, marketing, and business plans. I believe the success I had in developing business came from my love of watching and participating in sports. The more I thought about the correlation between my love of sports and my managing ability of sales teams, I decided to turn my perimeter walk into a business plan instead of an exercise plan.

Defining the Business Plan

So what would a successful #FitbitTheOwl business plan look like?

#1.  NO wiggles, jiggles, dimples, or flab flapping.

#2.  Wearing a pair of jeans comfortably that don’t scream, “MOM!!!!!!”

#3.  Walking along the beach in a tankini and not being mistaken for an M4 Sherman.

#4.  Ultimately, profitability will be measured in feeling 30 years younger. Or at least, I would feel like I do not have an autoimmune disease that leaves me with sore, inflamed joints, sleepless nights, and the inability of walking up a few stair steps without leaning on a hand railing.

Did you notice what I didn’t mention?

Business Sales Lingo

In the business world of managing sales teams, there are numbers –  a number of sales calls converted into a number of appointments, and a number of appointments converted into almighty sales dollars.

How many sales calls per hour does a salesperson have to do to convert into an appointment?

How many steps does it take to complete one lap?

How many appointment presentations can be converted into a sale?

How many laps does it take to convert into 10,000 steps?

How many closed sales appointments are necessary to achieve the expected sales quota?

How many 10,000 step days is necessary to achieve my health and exercise goals?

What is the sales trajectory necessary for a successful business plan?

What is the trajectory of the perimeter walk into a robust, effective fitness plan to make it lifelong?

In other words, I am changing the exercise lingo of steps, leaps, and fitness goals into the business lingo I understand – calls, appointments, and sales quotas.

Measuring the Plan’s Progress

So what didn’t I mention in my business plan above?

Almost all fitness plans recommend taking bodily measurements, weighing in periodically, snapping before and after photos. Firstly, I do have a “before” photo that is seared into my memory. I don’t need that photo posted on my refrigerator or anywhere else for that matter. Secondly, I believe my inability to master a fitness program is the periodic weighing in and measuring various body parts. These fitness recommendations often are detractors to success rather than motivation to keep going if not enough progress has been made during a specific period of time.

The Perimeter Walk Business Plan will not be measuring success in the number of pounds or inches lost.

Nope, in fact…

My clothes, not the measuring tape will be telling me if I am making progress. I promised myself I would not buy new clothes until my current wardrobe tells me it’s time to go shopping.

The mirror has never lied to me (the bitch). I trust her to show me whether the love handles and the muffin (okay, bread top) are disappearing.

Thirdly, and most importantly, what has kept me walking the perimeter the last five weeks has been feeling stronger in mind, body, and spirit.


“Before” and “After” photos…

It is my intention that next summer I will be posting “before” and “after” photos. It is actually something I am dreading, but I feel it is necessary to keep me honest with you, my readers. As I mentioned in my last post, #FitbitTheOwl – The Perimeter Walk, I am a bit competitive. I am hoping to win an Olympic Gold Medal in “after” photos next summer.

The Perimeter Walk Updates

Walking the perimeter has not gotten boring. In fact, I look forward to it. Penny and Barkley look forward to it too. Penny is my sales manager. At 6:50 p.m. Every night, she is there at my side, staring at me, licking me, and pawing at me.

“It’s time, IT’S TIME!!!”

So out the door, the three of us go. Penny is happily loping around the yard and Barkley with this blue squeaking ball in his mouth ready to play fetch.


Lap Counter

I no longer use the Tally Counter App. Instead, I use a yarn, stitch counter I found in my craft room. It’s smaller and I can easily keep track my laps with a simple click. I have also found that I am more relaxed without being married to my iPhone while I am walking the perimeter.

The Water BottleWater Bottle

I continue to use my 24 oz. water bottle with my golf stroke counter. I now consistently drink a minimum of 72 oz. per day. I have cut down my caffeine and alcohol consumption.


My next post in this series will be “#FitbitTheOwl – The Bonus Plan.”  I will be discussing my strategic sales trajectory planning for achieving successful ‘business results.’

Please join me next time when I announce the business plan’s marketing tagline!

This is the second post in a continuing series, #FitBitTheOwl.

© 2015-2016 TheBloggingOwl.com ALL RIGHTS RESERVED