Week 1 Update: VICTORY!

A week ago, I started watching what I was eating and endeavoring to squeeze a leetle bit more exercise into my day. Using LoseIt.com, I found out that I should be eating about 1240 calories a day in order to lose 2 lbs. a week. Once you add in calories lost through exercising each day (around 400 to 500, depending on day), this meant that realistically I could eat around 1640 calories a day and still come out on top. I’ve been tracking every single bite, except for on the 4th of July, when I took an “off” day and drank/ate everything I wanted to. On average, I lost about half a pound each day.

  • Starting weight (6/30/14): 179.4 lbs. (81.37 kg, or 12.81 stone). 
  • Ending weight (7/6/14): 176.4 lbs. (80.01 kg, or 12.6 stone).

Reflections: The hardest part of this week has been dealing with my emotions. When I get happy, sad, or stressed, my strongest impulse is to eat. Not having the ability to fall back on food was REALLY tough. Also, there were several times when I was supposed to go out with friends to drink and/or eat, and although I cancelled a couple of social engagements due to not thinking I’d be able to cope, last night I went out and had a difficult time of it. I ended up eating a salad with no dressing (ugh) and a small cup of red beans and rice, then sipping on one cocktail when we went out for drinks. Since it was more of a “hanging out with acquaintances” thing than a “drinks with friends” thing, it was even more uncomfortable than typical. As they say, though, them’s the breaks. I’ll endure a few uncomfortable silences in exchange for losing pounds any day.

At any rate, I’m right where I’m supposed to be. I’m not hungry, or tired, or feeling like I’ve overworked myself at all this past week. My goal weight for this week was 177.4 lbs, so I’m a pound lighter than I planned to be, but that’s fine since I’m sure I’ll fluctuate a little in the coming week. My goal for next Sunday is to be 175.4 lbs. Also, I think that for the next week I’ll try stepping up my game just a little bit in the exercise apartment, maybe tack on an additional mile to what I walk each day, and try to get up to burning a solid 500 to 600 calories a day in exercise. Wish me luck!

Shifting Priorities…and Pounds

Since going off of birth control a year ago, I’ve gained 25 lbs. Add that to the original 20 lbs. that I needed to lose to be at my optimum weight, and you can see that I’m kind of in a bind. (Literally – my jeans are cutting off my circulation.) So as of yesterday, I’m back in diet & exercise mode. Which, let’s be honest here, has failed every single time I’ve tried for the last 15 years, as I’ve swollen from 135 lbs. to 180 lbs. Argh.

My biggest two problems are being lazy and having an emotional attachment to eating. My favorite activities are all sedentary: watching TV, reading, sleeping, playing around on the computer. On top of that, my moods demand to be accompanied/assuaged/otherwise treated with food. Do I know it’s wrong? Yes. Do I care, and want to change? Definitely. When it comes down to it, am I able to resist swinging by Popeye’s for some fried chicken, or getting that late night burger after an evening with my friends? Not really. Every time I’ve tried to focus my energy on eating healthy food, working out daily, and quitting that horrible cycle of treating my emotions with a prescription of baked goods and fried meat products, I’ve ended up failing spectacularly. Each time I fall even deeper into the hole, and end up cycling through patches of intense guilt and sandwich eating.

But all we can do is try. And maybe this time I might have a little more to try for. I’m turning 33 in November, and it just so happens that LoseIt tells me that I have exactly enough time between yesterday and mid-November to get pretty damn close to my goal weight. If I lose 2 lbs. a week, it’s realistic that I could be really close to 140 lbs. by my birthday. Also important is that I’ll be seeing two of my oldest friends that month, something that NEVER happens since they both live across the country and none of us ever get to travel that far. One friend recently experienced some amazing life changes and is looking quite svelte, so I can use her as my friendly competition. After all, I’d hate to be the chubby girl in her vacation photos. The other friend has always been super-competitive and a tad bit mean to me, so I can use her as my less-than-friendly competition. It will be immensely satisfying to look good in all of her vacation photos. Plus, the odds are high that if she sees I’ve gained weight since we last saw each other, she’ll make sure to mention it, and I will lose my everloving shit if that happens.

To get started, I’m taking small-ish steps to add activity to my day-to-day existence, as well as to cut back on needless calories:

  • Tracking every bite I eat at LoseIt.com
  • No more drinking (except for special occasions) – in other words, no more margarita nights with the girls or glasses of wine at home with sexy awesome boyfriend. Boo.
  • Walking to and from work every day – at a little over 2 miles each way, that’s 400 calories right there.
  • Wearing my VivoFit to track my steps walked, calories burned, and activity levels throughout the day.
  • Joining up at DietBet.com and making my bid to lose 40 lbs. a little more exciting of a challenge.
  • Drinking lots of water. This time of year I tend to eat even more because I hate going out in the sun and love sitting on my ass in front of the TV, but also because I’m constantly sweating and mistake dehydration/thirst for hunger.
  • Eating more veggies, less processed foods, little dairy, and no wheat.
  • Most importantly, talking about this here on my blog.

The worst part of sharing this on my blog is that since I’ve failed every time I’ve tried to lose weight over the past few years, I’m embarrassed to even let people know that I’m trying again. But eventually this is going to work out, and I really do need to be held accountable for my actions. So I’m going to keep sharing my weight, my struggles with eating, and my daily activities here.

Eventually, I’m going to start building on more activities. I already do a little bit of weight lifting every day, plus some yoga and basic stretching, and I’ve been jogging one or two days a week, too. But for now, I’m just going to concentrate on watching what I eat and walking to and from work every day. I think that’s going to have a drastic effect right off the bat, and I don’t want to push it so hard that I end up giving up as soon as I start, like every other time. Eventually I’ll work up to daily yoga or dance classes or trips to the gym, and longer runs every day, that kind of thing. But it might not be for a month, who knows?

The other thing I’m going to do is pledge myself a present for every 5 lbs. lost. That’s EIGHT PRESENTS, y’all. EIGHT things that I covet, that will be mine as long as I stop eating crappy food and start making slightly more intelligent choices each day. I’m not quite sure what my presents are going to be yet, but I’ll probably start shopping around online tonight and plan them out so that I have something to obsess over. It’ll probably be all clothes, books, and jewelry, though I do definitely want some things for my house. Hmmm…

The other thing I should probably note is that even though I’ve taken one set of blood tests that confirms I have a thyroid imbalance, and one set where the levels were all normal, I haven’t had enough money to get any other tests taken or go to the doctor for an official diagnosis and drugs. So this weight gain could possibly be because of my thyroid. But first, since I’m not losing my hair, my cycle is normal, and my brain fog is largely gone now that I’ve drastically cut back on wheat products, I’m going to try the diet and exercise route to see if it’s possible to make a dent in my weight. Eventually I’ll be able to afford health insurance. One day. Maybe. Probably not. But I’m seriously not going to worry about that today because it will just send me back to the refrigerator. For now, let’s just do some walking and eat some veggies. The rest can wait.



Wrapping Up Day #1

It’s 9pm CT, and I’m feeling like it might be time to hit the hay soon. I got home about an hour ago to find the lights all off and The Man taking a nap. I thought it might be a good opportunity to initiate a little friskiness, but instead when I woke him up he was in a shitty mood, so that’s a no go. Instead I weighed in out of curiosity (161.8 lbs – wtf?) took a shower to wash off the Bikram sweat, and now I’m curled up on the couch in my favorite pjs, jotting down notes here in on C&Q.

Obviously, I made it to my Bikram class. It was awesome, probably the best class I’ve been to yet. It was our instructor Joshua’s last night at the studio for at least a year. He’s leaving to study with a yogini in San Antonio, and we’re all really going to miss him. He’s one of my favorite instructors, always cracking a joke, quick with words of encouragement, offering awesome suggestions for improvement, just a great presence. He’s one of the teachers that makes you want to work extra hard to get your postures just right – my Balancing Stick is always best in his class.

Today was not only his last class, but also his going away party, so during class he played music at strategic parts (like “Lose Yourself” during Balancing Stick and “Danger Zone” during Full Locus, lol!) I love music, and feel that basically everything is enhanced with the right soundtrack. The same held true for yoga class tonight. It was a lovely time, and I hope that one of the teachers might start doing that every once in awhile, especially in Friday night classes. After class I stayed and chatted with a couple of the ladies I see around from time to time at the studio, and then I was offered a huge (HUGE!) piece of this beautiful triple layer cake from Whole Foods. It even had this gorgeous glazed fruit on top. I said no, but the instructor really wanted to get rid of it, so I took it…and walked straight down the street back to my office, where I gave it to one of the graphic designers to eat! Yay for self control!

So this is what my day looked like, according to LoseIt.com:

Set in Stone(s)

A few months back, I wrote about my love for Zaggora pants. I’ve never owned a pair, and don’t know if I’ll ever have the money to afford them, but damn if the idea of losing weight just wearing pants doesn’t seriously appeal to me. I mean who wouldn’t jump at the chance to put on a pair of pants and magically drop 10 pounds? Not that I believe all of the hype, but it’s one of those “suspension of disbelief” kinds of deals. I prefer to hold onto the fantasy of melting off my cellulite with little to no effort.

Back on this side of reality, the sensible me understands that weight loss doesn’t happen overnight. It might just be that a pair of magic pants might help accelerate the process, but the bulk of the work is going to involve watching every bite that goes into my craw, as well as amping up the exercise considerably. I keep telling myself every day that “tomorrow is going to be the day I start.” Every day I fail, some days worse than others. Last night I went out for drinks and ended up eating about a pound of loaded french fries with cheddar, bacon and ranch dressing. Today I had nachos for dinner.

So here I am, setting it in stone:

Tomorrow – Friday, August 10th, 2012 – will be the day I stop dicking around and start working off this 20 lbs. No more late night eats. No more junk food. No more processed snacky shit. No more sodas. No more wasting money on emotionally gratifying lard concoctions.

The rules are:

1) Work out every day in some way – yoga, running, crunches, weights, or just basic stretching. Yoga should happen at least five times a week, and running should happen at least three. Stretching should happen every day, to ensure hip flexibility and little/no back pain.

2) Eat a vegetarian diet, sticking between 1200 and 1500 calories a day, as suggested on LoseIt.com. If I’m feeling at all weak or otherwise unfulfilled, up the calorie count with unprocessed organic whole foods.

3) Take vitamins daily! My chiropractor suggested a liquid Vitamin D and a probiotic to go along with my daily multivitamin. I definitely want to add in a super green supplement in my mornings, too.

4) Get at least 7 hours of sleep per night. I’d like to aim for 8, but this would have me in bed at 9:30pm, which is just not feasible on my schedule.

5) Set goals. Map out goal achievement (or not) in a highly visible manner – on this blog, at work, and maybe through FB. Tell everyone everything I’m eating and everything I’m doing to work it off. Take photos and videos. Post photos and videos even if I’m ashamed at what I see – especially if I’m ashamed, in fact.

6) Create a rewards system – a dress or pair of shoes for every three pounds lost and kept off for a week, for example.

7) Get up to speed on “extras” that could help me out, like a pair of Zaggora pants for lounging at home, or maybe a body wrap system that works really well.

Tomorrow I’ll weigh in first thing before drinking water or heading off to yoga. I’ll also measure my thighs, arms, stomach, hips, etc. and post photos of my “starting” body, which will have to wait until later in the day, since there’s no way I’m getting The Man up at 5am to take snapshots of my jiggly bits (as Bridget Jones calls them). The moment of truth is upon us (eek!)

Sunday, January 15th

Today’s Weight: 158.8 lbs.

Exercise: I ran 3.16 miles in a little over 34 minutes, the longest distance I’ve run without stopping in many, many months. It felt good, easy even. I’ll have to work on improving my time, but I’m happy with my accomplishment for now. Also, when I got home I made it through about 15 minutes of a Zumba workout before I felt like I was putting serious stress on a groin muscle. Instead of persevering, I stopped and stretched and called it a day. Better to go a little easy on myself today and still be able to move tomorrow to try again.

Food: So far, I’ve had almond milk yogurt and blueberries, and four or five glasses of water. I’ll most likely have soup and an egg later in the day, then maybe fish and some sauteed veggies for dinner, depending on what SparkPeople.com says about my calorie allotment.

Last night after posting, I used MS Word to create a calendar sheet depicting January. In each day I inserted three lines of text: “Run Miles:”, “Zumba ?”, and “Weight:”. Then I put it up on my refrigerator. Every day I’m going to weigh myself first thing, record that on the fridge, then go running and do a Zumba workout and record my mileage and whether or not I did Zumba. I’m going to aim for burning between 500 and 800 calories a day with exercise, and abstaining from all of the crap food I’m supposed to be avoiding, anyway. I think I can easily be 155 by the end of the month, and 150 by the end of next month if I just concentrate on eating like a non-mutant and training for this upcoming 5K on January 29th, and then pick another 5K to train for in February.