Fat as Hell…

and not going to take it anymore!

Better Late Than Never, I Suppose.

I think I just I had an epiphany.

In response to my last (whiny) post about not having enough time/energy to complete all the administrivia that seems associated with losing weight successfully, BikiniMe wrote “…the most important thing is the doing, not the logging.”

She’s right, of course, and that has been part of my ongoing frustration.

However, as someone who’s natural instinct it is to archive, document and analyze (I’m a librarian for goodness sake) another good chunk of my frustration lately has stemmed from just how little I seem to have learned from all this “busy work.” Honestly, I don’t mind archiving the details of this journey… in fact, I *want* to do it. Believe me, if I could figure out a way incorporate the dewey decimal system, I probably would. :) But what’s more, I just *really* want to learn something from the whole process otherwise, well.. it all seems more than a little pointless. Even if it does result in shed pounds, if I don’t LEARN something about myself and how I eat and what’s wrong with the way I eat then what’s to stop me from gaining all that weight back??

Then tonight, as I was posting my food diary, I noticed something.
A trend, if you will.

If you look at my daily food intake it’s easy to see that I eat the vast majority of my calories at dinner. I sometimes eat no breakfast at all, and when I do, it tends to be small — a piece of fruit, etc. Then a relatively small lunch and then nothing again until dinner, which is usually massive (compared to the day’s other meals anyway) and almost always accounts for over half of my day’s calories. Then I started thinking about the times (of day) that I eat.

Breakfast: between 6:00 – 7:00am (if at all)
Lunch: between 12:15 – 12:40
Dinner: between 6:00 – 7:00pm

And then it happened.

At first I thought the skies were parting above me and that beams of heavenly light were actually shining down as if from some divine spotlight… but then I realized it was just the light bulb going on over my head.

I need to eat more frequently.
I need to eat smaller meals.

*cue hallelujah chorus*

I need to eat smaller, more frequent meals.

Um… duh.

Here’s the thing… this ain’t rocket science, folks. I mean, eating smaller more frequent meals is a highly recommended approach to weight loss. In fact, even though I am loath to call this new way of living a “diet,” the truth is that most “diet” programs recommend a similar approach to eating… and a lot of people who have been successful and taking and keeping off large amounts of weight list smaller and more frequent meals as a key component in what finally worked for them… and yet, I just couldn’t see it. It took forcing myself to write it all down, day after day, for months and months and months (with admitted breaks here and there) before I finally *learned* something. I swear. Sometimes, I feel like I should be wearing the weight loss dunce cap, or something.

That’s not to say that eating smaller, more frequent meals is the right approach for everyone or even if it’s the right approach for me. However, given the data I’ve collected from months and months of logging my food choices, it does seem like it just *might* work. so… here’s what I’m going do:

Even though, officially, it’s too late for me to join Krissie’s 10 day challenge to “win” — I’m still going to participate. Starting tomorrow, and for 10 days, I’m going try to split up my eating into smaller, bite sized (har!) chunks. Instead of eating the traditional breakfast lunch and dinner, I’m going to aim for at least 5 mini meals per day. I’m still going to shoot for less than 1500 calories per day (and preferably more like 1200 – 1300), but I’m going to see if eating more frequently helps curb the afternoon/evening hunger that causes me to overeat at dinner time.

I figure, after 10 days I’ll have an idea about whether or not this is really a viable approach… plus, c’mon, I can commit to just about anything for 10 days, right?

And in the meantime I get to ride the wave of having actually discovered something about myself… in the hopes that, in the end, all this self-reflection will make me a stronger, better and *fingers crossed* thinner person. Besides, who knows what I might *learn* next! :)

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Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket PS: I’ve mapped out my route for ScaleJunkie’s 5k In May challenge. Of course, I won’t add the badge to my sidebar until I’ve actually done it, but here’s a sneak peak at my route. If When I do finally walk this course it will be more than just a distance victory for me… but I’ll wait to talk about that when I finally do it. In the meantime, I’m excited because, c’mon… check out that badge! Plus, even though I’m so proud of my blogging buddies who’ve gotten up the gumption to actually run one (or more) 5k’s, (yes, Andrew and Marshmallow, I’m talking to you, among others) I’m always just a little bit jealous of those accomplishments. I look forward to the day when I’m no longer *just* cheering them on, but am also donning my own pair of running shoes, you know? But in the meantime, walking a 5k is a good start. And I’m excited about logging these steps and earning this cool new badge for my sidebar. Anyway, the walk is one I’ve done before minus the overlapping inset that pushes it over the 5k mark.

Anyway… Go me!

May 15, 2008 Posted by | 10 day challenge, losing weight | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Stepping to the Numbers

I’ve decided to participate in Fatbridemaid’s Pedometer Challenge mostly because it sounded like fun, but also because I got a pedometer for Christmas which has been collecting dust in the bottom of a drawer ever since. The challenge doesn’t officially start until tomorrow, but she’s counting steps before then just to get everybody all pumped up. That said, all week long, I’ve been trying to figure out my pedometer which, apparently, takes a phd to operate. Seriously, I may not be an official Mensa member, but I’m no slouch either and this little plastic gadget has me bested.

Luckily, I was talking to someone at work about it this week and on Friday she brought me another pedometer to borrow for awhile. Luckily, this one is fabulous. Easy, sturdy and, as far as I can tell, accurate. (I did some test walks to see if it measured the correct steps and it only missed once and only by one step). So now I get to play along! :)

To that end, today was a *big* walking day for me. My husband and I got up early this morning and headed downtown to our local farmer’s market. It was a gorgeous day with lots of sunshine. Warm and with just a taste of the hot and humid summer that we are no doubt in store for. It just so happened that there was also a classic car show set up across many city blocks near the market, so we also tooled up and down the promenade several times looking at the handy work of people who clearly dedicate much of their lives to restoring these vehicles.

Anyway, later, we walked the 1.5 mile “nature trail” near our house, but when we got back to the house I realized that it just wasn’t enough. I’d barely broken a sweat… as though *that* walk was just the warm up… so I headed out and kept walking until I’d put in *another* 3.5 miles.

Of course, now I’m sore and sleepy, but I also have to marvel (just a little) at how far I’ve come. Six months ago, I had to push and push myself to walk even a mile. And I hated every second of it. But tonight I wanted *more* exercise. I *needed* more. And, like icing on the proverbial cake, my additional jaunt this evening took me over the 10,000 step mark for the day.

12, 966 steps to be exact.

I mean, I have no idea how many steps other people are taking in a day, but to me this feels like it’s crazy good. In fact, I’m sure that I won’t get anywhere near this on most days… simply because, well, I don’t think I walk over 5 miles on an average day. But today I did. Go me!

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You know, all of this weight loss + exercise business is still pretty new to me.

I got to thinking the other day about how little I really know about how to eat and move my body in ways that are truly healthy. I’m a complete and utter novice at this and, frankly, I think I’m fumbling around in the dark most of the time. I read other blogs and I’m, literally, stunned by how together so many of you all seem. I read your food journals and the stories you share about your goals, plans and successes and it all leaves me hoping that *someday* I’ll be in that place too.

But I’m not there yet. I still find myself *wanting* the food I shouldn’t have or the kind of life where I can just sit on my butt and not worry about things like heart disease and cellulite. And, I don’t know, maybe it will never become second nature to me. Maybe I’ll always have to fight my first instincts. All I know for sure is that if I really am going to make the kind of changes to my life that are required for permanent weight loss then those changes have to be permanent too. I won’t magically wake up one day and not have to think about what I put in my body and how I treat it. I’ll always have to think about it. I’ll always be fighting this battle.

And let’s face it. That kind of sucks.

But the thing is, on nights like tonight when something inside me clicks and I find myself *wanting* to do the right thing. When I’m faced with a choice between living healthily and just living *and* the first one is actually preferable. Those are nights when I truly think that I just might be able to do this.

Of course, tomorrow I’ll probably eat something that will cause Paola to give me a virtual bollocking, but for tonight, I feel like I might actually be “getting there” — 12,966 steps at a time. :)

April 19, 2008 Posted by | exercise, motivation | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Good Things Come in Sets of Three.

Poking about online, recently, I’ve seen some really good advice that has caused me to a) think more about how and why I’m doing this b) evaluate whether my strategies are as effective as they should/could be and c) get my ass back in gear during a period when it’s been *really* hard to stay motivated.

Firstly, John over at John Is Fit wrote a great post with his 9 tips for “Kick-Starting Your Dormant Weight Loss Blog.” This post is *so* good and I’ve seen *so* many “dormant” weight loss blogs lately that I’ve seriously considered just sprinkling this link all over cyberspace — like a little motivational fairy. :) I have to confess, though, I still haven’t done #5 yet, but I *have* done the others and it’s helped me pick up where I left off a month ago. Even if you’re not in a weight loss/blogging slump right now, I’d recommend bookmarking this link — just in case.

In this post, Alice responds to a television program called I Can Make You Thin that claims that weight loss can be achieved by eating what you want, when you want and whenever you’re hungry. Yeah good one. Alice responds in the perfect way by outlining her own steps for success, which as you might imagine, fall in complete contrast to those of the show. I find this kind of self reflection to be so healthy. After all, when we share our own methods for success, who knows, we might even help someone else in the process. That said, I loved Alice’s suggestion #5. I’ve been thinking about it all day and plan to put it into practice the moment I finish this post! :)

And finally, there was this article from MSN that outlined 10 common “Diet flubs” along with suggestions to fix them. Number 10 made me want to write this post. It is as follows:

Diet flub #10: You slim down solo.
It’s tempting to keep your 10-pound goal a secret (and wow everybody later with your results), but coming clean about your diet to pals increases your odds of success, according to an analysis of 46 studies by researchers at Tufts-New England Medical Center in Boston. People with social support lost 6 percent more weight than those who dropped pounds on their own.

Gosh. That’s pretty straightforward, isn’t it? People with social support lose more weight than those without it.

Of course, I didn’t need the health experts over at MSN to tell me that I owe a great deal of my success to having a network of brilliant and compassionate people to lean on during all of this. But still, having them say it does provide just a smidge of validation. What’s more it also makes me all the more motivated to keep all this writing and reading, posting and clicking up, even on those nights/weeks when I just don’t feel up to it.

So… there go.
Go do some clicking now.
Really.
Go on. :)

March 18, 2008 Posted by | losing weight, motivation, weight loss news | , , , , , , | 16 Comments