Fat as Hell…

and not going to take it anymore!

What Me Worry?

I forgot to post yesterday’s weigh in:

260.8lbs – 261.6lbs = +.8lbs

Ok. So that means I’ve gained 1.6lbs over the last two weeks. I know I should be disappointed in myself, or something, but honestly, I just want to shrug and say big deal. Considering the weeks I had, *only* being up a pound and half (or so) seems like a miracle. Besides, this week is already going well. So far… I’ve stuck to my caloric guns and I had a really good work out today. I can totally feel it in my calves and in my tummy and I actually smiled earlier as I felt the sweat start to pour off me.

Oh, don’t get me wrong… I still hate exercising, but it feels good to be back in the saddle.

Plus, I did a little “jogging” today. Of course, I have to use that term loosely, because what I did probably wouldn’t be called jogging by actual joggers, but it was definitely beyond the scope of walking and it nearly killed me, so I figure I’ve earned the right to use the word “jog” at this point. Anyway, it was literally, the first time I’ve run since I was forced to during PE class way back in high school, and I have to say, it felt pretty good… better than I would have thought. I didn’t actually set out to jog, but I was doing some walking and, frankly, it just wasn’t enough. My heart rate was up, but not enough to make that much of a difference, so I thought, well.. I’ll just pick up the pace a bit.

Now… I think I may have mentioned before that the loop around my house is exactly .2 of a mile, so I know if I go around 5 times, I’ve made a mile. Anyway, I have to say that I never thought I’d make it around even once, but I actually “jogged” around the loop twice! Woo hoo! .4 of a mile! I had to walk the remainder of my journey, but I felt like a total rock star even going that far.

Anyway… it’s been a good day. And, I’ve made a decision. Starting this week, I’m moving my weigh ins to Saturdays. I’m going to stick with my “weigh as often, or as little, as you want to, but record your weight once per week” plan… but I’m making the big day Saturday from here on out, (or at least until I change it again), because I feel like knowing at the beginning of the weekend how I did the week before, will allot me more time to prepare a meal/exercise regiment for the week to come. Right now, having Monday as D-Day isn’t working as well for me as I would like because by the time I’ve weighed, I’m already in work mode, and it’s tough for me to change that week’s plans when the week has already swung into action. *shrugs* We’ll just see how it goes, I suppose.

In the meantime, I’ve been reading some thought provoking, inspiring and truly heart wrenching posts lately from some of the bloggers that I glean the most encouragement from… and I’m reminded of a quote from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. that was, admittedly, said about something very different, but that I think applies here: “We may have come here in different ships, but we’re all in the same boat now.” Each one of us is taking this journey for different reasons and we’ll all get there by different means, but in the end, I think there’s more than just an extra large waist band that links us. Forgive me if I sound a bit arrogant, but I think, quite frankly, that we’re a pretty incredible group of people: brave, strong and very much worth taking care of.

So… here’s to taking good care of ourselves.
We damned well deserve it. :)

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February 26, 2008 Posted by | losing weight, weigh day | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments

Done and Dusted

Well… the last couple of weeks have been long and grueling, but they’re finally over and I’m totally ready to move beyond them. So much so that I didn’t even attempt to go back and figure out my calories for the last week in order to update my food diary. Last week’s food intake is a complete blur to me. I did my best to stick to plan, but unscheduled snacking in between my well thought out meals became a real problem. And the truth is, I just don’t want to dwell on it anymore. I’d rather just move forward and forget about the recent days in which I veered off course.

In my experience, dwelling on failures only leads to more failures. And I’m just not willing to let that happen.

That said, I can’t just pretend they didn’t happen either. Especially since one of my goals for this month was to collect some much needed nutritional plan related data. So, to that end, I’ve gone ahead and filled in my monthly spreadsheet with what is my best estimate of how many calories I took in each day, that way, at the end of the month, I’ll still have an overall snapshot of how well I was able to stick to plan… but trying to figure out the details of it all for my food diary just isn’t happening.

The exercise bit, on the other hand, is a different story. I left those days on my exercise diary blank, and placed great big zeros in those columns of my spreadsheet because, well… there just wasn’t any exercise to report. There was no time, and even if there had been, I simply didn’t have the energy. I worked out today, though, and am planning to get right back on the bandwagon when it comes to moving my fat ass on a (near) daily basis. I’ve worked far too hard for the last 7 months or so to let one (or two) stressful weeks defeat me.

So… tomorrow I’ll step on the scale and take whatever punch it throws at me.

As I said *last* week, I feel as though I’ve already moved beyond whatever comment the scale has to make on what I’m well aware was a lost week. It’s not that I don’t care about what happened last week, it’s just that I care more about what’s going to happen next. My mind is already firmly planted in next week, which I *know* will be better.

In the good news department: I finished and mailed the massive grant proposal that sucked up so much of my energy these last two weeks. The author visit/performance that I’d been planning for months came off without a hitch and was, actually, a huge success both for me and for the students who participated. It was wonderful and a highlight of my career thus far. And finally, I finished the big, big video project that was dumped in my lap at the last minute. Finished it and it won second prize in the competition, much to my surprise! So… as I said at the onset, done and dusted. *whew*

And now… onward!

Goals for this week:

    Move my ass! I need to work out 5 of the next 7 days. Period.
    Break the snack habit: Too many unaccounted for calories last week. I don’t care if I eat my calories in multiple, smaller sessions rather than in 3 defined meals, but I need to plan it that way and not just reach for the dark chocolate whenever my fingers and tummy need filling.
    Say goodbye to Starbucks: My husband and I *were* going to Starbucks once or twice a week as a treat *and* only when I’d alloted myself those calories at the end of a long workday… last week, however, we went *nearly* every night. No more. Twice next week. Tops! And, if I do go, I will only order a tall. I will only order a tall. *clicks ruby slippers* I will only order a tall!

Hope everyone has a great week!

February 24, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

I’m Done Whining (for the moment , anyway).

I’m what I’ve heard some people refer to as an “apple” shaped person: in other words, most of my fat is stored in the stomach/abdominal area of my body — which I’ve also heard/read is the most unhealthy spot for fat to be stored on a person’s body. (Ooh! Lucky me!) It’s always been that way. Even when I was smaller than I am now, I had a big tummy. So, I know that *this* weight, the bulk around my waist, will be the most difficult for me to lose.

Perhaps that’s why this article is so interesting to me. In a nutshell:

In a study of obese adults at risk of heart disease, researchers found that those who trimmed calories and increased their whole-grain intake shed more belly fat and lowered their blood levels of C-reactive protein or CRP.

CRP is a marker of chronic, low-level inflammation in the blood vessels, and both abdominal fat and CRP, in excess, are linked to heart attack and stroke.

The article goes on to say…

All of the study participants cut calories for 12 weeks, but half were instructed to strive for whole grains, while the rest were told to choose refined grains. The whole-grain group was told to look for products with “whole grain” listed as the first ingredient on the label.

In the end, the average weight loss was about 8 to 11 pounds in both groups. However, the average CRP level dropped by 38 percent in the whole-grain group, while remaining unchanged in the refined-grain group. In addition, while both groups showed a similar change in waistline size, the whole-grain dieters showed a greater reduction in the percentage of fat around the middle.

I know that I am already including more whole grain in my diet than I ever have before, but as Kathy pointed out in an earlier post, it’s not always easy to figure out what is really whole grain and what’s just a refined grain in sheep’s clothing, as it were. I’m no nutritional guru. What the hell do I know about whole vs. non whole grains? The truth is, until I did a little research, I didn’t even know what a whole grain technically was. I knew that, supposedly, I was supposed to eat more of them, but I couldn’t tell you why.

Until now that is! :)

I love the Mayo Clinic and their litany of online resources for people, obese and otherwise, who just want to live a healthier life. For being one of the most respected medical centers in the world, their site manages to be full of information in real language for real people. When I read the information there, I don’t feel like I’m reading a medical journal and yet, I don’t feel as though I’m being “talked down to” either. Anyway, here’s what they say about whole grains:

Whole grains haven’t had their bran and germ removed by milling, making them better sources of fiber — the part of plant-based foods that your body doesn’t digest. Among many health benefits, a high-fiber diet also tends to make a meal feel more filling and linger longer, so you stay full for a greater amount of time.

Refined grains, such as white rice or white flour, have both the bran and germ removed from the grain. Although vitamins and minerals are added back into refined grains after the milling process, they still don’t have as many nutrients as whole grains do, and they don’t provide as much fiber.

And then they provide some *real* examples which is exactly what someone like me needs:

whole-grains.jpg

Here’s the thing: this whole losing weight and getting healthy thing is new to me. I’ve literally spent my entire life either a) not caring anything about that or b) not knowing enough about the how and the why of it to do anything about it. Even now, I feel as though while so many of you, the bloggers that I read every day, are in the nutritional equivalent of the gifted class, that I’m still riding the proverbial short bus to nutrition school. Most days I feel like I have no idea what I’m doing.

But then there are other days, like today, when I learn something new about my body and how to treat it. And learning is so powerful. Just by adding a little something new to my arsenal of knowledge, I feel better prepared to negotiate the fight ahead.

What’s more, I think that’s part of what makes this whole blogging thing so powerful. Yes… the support is truly crucial. I mean, these last couple of weeks have been really hard for me, and I’m here to tell you that, as many mistakes as I have made over the last several days, the limited willpower I was able to exert was, in large part, due to the support and camaraderie that I get here.

That said, though, another crucial component in all of this is the sheer amount of knowledge that I get from reading what all of you post each day. I can’t tell you how often I find, while perusing my ever growing list of weight-loss related blogs, a web of links and tags and shout outs in which people credit and thank one another for sharing something that inspired, moved or taught them something.

We do more than just depend on each other… more often than not, we learn from one another, and now, even though I’m relatively new to the blogging world, I can’t imagine doing this without that amazing resource. It’s a powerful thing we’ve got going on here girls (and guys!) and I’m proud to be a part of it.

February 21, 2008 Posted by | health | , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments