Sunday, February 02, 2014
So the Challenge within a Challenge continues. I have been waiting for Ceri to post her blog to let us know how she has done this week but I guess she is either afraid or she is waiting for me.
On my end...
For many reasons this was a more difficult week to ensure I was able to max out on my daily minutes. Too many meetings at work, too many calls to parents of students and too many days where I was feeling wiped out and drained. When I stepped on the scale yesterday to weigh in, my weight loss was no where near last week's loss of 4.6 pounds. In fact it was only 1.6 down. It was down which I am happy about but why not more? Was it lower activity, was it the stress, poor eating or lack of sleep? Obviously time to investigate.
For the 5 % Challenge and our Challenge within a Challenge rules, individuals can max out minutes at 120 per day. Checking through my daily results, at the end of the week my active minutes didn't look too bad compared to last week. Seven hundred forty-two total active minutes for the week were only down 65 minutes from last week. Doesn't sound too bad. But when I took a closer look at the real numbers it was scary different.
I decided to get rid of our max out number of 120 and look at my real active minutes. According to my fitbit and the Sparkpage fitness tracker. I discovered that this past week I had actually dropped from 1302 minutes down to 978 minutes which is really 324 less minutes of activity, or five hours and 24 minutes less time being active. When I looked at my steps I discovered I had walked less dropping from 79981 Steps to 44292 Steps, a difference of 35689 Steps, almost half the number of the previous week. This was a significant difference between activity from week one to week two and clearly numbers can lie when we don't take the time to look at them carefully.
A few good things that I do recognize…
I am down another 1.6 lbs. and down 6.2 lbs. for this challenge. When I lose another 7.4 I will have meet the 5% Goal.
Another good thing is I recognize that I do have to pick up my activity level when I can and increase those steps. Ideally I would like to 87500 Steps per week but that may take some time to get there.
Thirdly, if I follow this plan Ceri is going to posting a pic saying "Andy is her fitness hero."
Ceri, watch out! I have decided to follow a training program for a 10K run. I even bought a couple of apps to help me on the way..Run Keeper and Zombie Run. Can't wait to update this next week, unless the zombies get me.
So, how do your active minutes look? Ceri, how did you do this week?
Below are more details for my own records...
Jan 25-Jan 31
Saturday Exercise … 97 Challenge Minutes (5591 steps) (97 FitBit Minutes)
Sunday Exercise … 120 CM (9813 steps) (136 FB minutes)
Monday Exercise …120 CM (5754 steps) (127 FB minutes)
Tuesday Exercise ….88 CM (4393 steps) (88 FB minutes)
Wednesday Exercise…77 CM (4374 Steps) (197 FB minutes)
Thursday Exercise … 120 CM (8184 steps) (77 FB minutes)
Friday Exercise … 120 CM (6183 steps) ( 156 FB minutes)
(44292 Steps and 978 FB Minutes)
Jan 18-Jan 24
Saturday Exercise ... 15041 (197 FitBit minutes)
Sunday Exercise … 10218 (144 FB minutes)
Monday Exercise …15665 (271 FB minutes)
Tuesday Exercise ….13053 (240 FB minutes)
Wednesday Exercise…8113 Steps (164 FB minutes)
Thursday Exercise… 13362 steps (199 FB minutes)
Friday Exercise … 4529 steps) (87 FB minutes)
79981 Steps …1302 minutes
Sunday, January 26, 2014
Last week marked the beginning of the 5% Challenge but it also was the start of a special challenge within a challenge. The first ever Team Ceri vs. Team Andy competition to lose weight and gain fitness minutes was initiated. As noted, the winner of this little side bet would get some special bragging rates but with that the losing person would post a picture on their page, send one to the winner to post on their page and of course write a blog with pic to bemoan the fact they were not quite tough enough to beat the other.
Firstly, I have to say that I appreciated the comments posted on my blog and knowing that there are lots of people cheering us on. Your postings and support give extra motivation for both us us to succeed. So "Thank you!"
This challenge has been great for me and I am determined to ensure Ceri's picture is shared with all of the Spark people universe. To that end I kept busy throughout the week, making sure I was active during the day getting in lots of steps at work, going for walks after work and putting in extra time on my stationary bike.
This week, as per our challenge guidelines, I almost maxed out on active minutes each day, set at 120. My total for the week was 807.
With this I was also very careful with my food intake, staying away from the junk foods and pretty much eating healthy and keeping calories near or below 2000. In the end, at the end of week one, I have lost 4.6 pounds.
While I would love to keep losing weight at this rate I know there are going to be rocky days ahead and weight fluctuations are inevitable but in the meantime I just want to say...
Take that Team Ceri! I can see the pics now proclaiming my victory.
Thursday, January 16, 2014
So, here starts another 5% Challenge and I am going to participate yet again. Now while I love these challenges I have not been as faithful to the team as I could be and have had difficulty remaining diligent to the end. This time I have a slightly different plan to keep me on track, along with another good Sparkfriend of mine.
You see, Ceri, aka Ceriusly, one of the challenge leaders and I have been doing these 5% challenges for a few years and we are upping the ante a bit. This time we have our own personal challenge within the challenge. Actually two of them.
One of our challenges is to see which one of us can lose the most weight and the second is to see who can accumulate the most fitness minutes. But here's the catch. This time we are playing for more the Spark goodies or bragging rights. This time, with the bragging rights, the loser has promised to take a photo of themselves holding a sign that acknowledges the winner. That photo will be posted on both people's Sparkpages, along with a blog entry admitting defeat.
So, in the rare chance I should lose, I will post a picture of myself saying something along the lines "Ceri kicked my butt and she is definitely awesome." Now I don't particularly care for losing so I really can't wait for Ceri to post her pic and write a blog, admitting that I lost more weight had more exercise minutes and that I truly am her hero.
Keep posted, for in eight weeks, you will read a blog, from one, or both of us admitting that one of us is the champion, or victor, of our personal challenge with a challenge.
Saturday, October 12, 2013
What's your desperation point? Over the last few months I have watched the numbers on my scale climb. As I had done before, I reached a milestone goal and then turned direction and headed back towards my starting point. I watched those numbers grow, but I had convinced myself I could get back on track. I stepped on the scale, saw an ugly number but assured myself it wouldn't be long. Each time the numbers rose I justified it with knowledge that life had been throwing me too many challenges and eating properly and exercise would just have to wait.
But then last week, I hit my desperation point. Perhaps it was the fact I was tightening that belt and realized it was squeezing earlier than it used to. Perhaps it was the fact I looked in a photo and instead of pride, I now felt remorse that my weight loss was no longer apparent. I had even been hiding from the scale but last weekend I stepped on and realized I had hit my desperation point. I had almost come full circle. I weighed in and was three pounds short of last years starting weight. Twenty five pounds of fat has been added back to my body and I am choked.
So what do you do? On Monday, I made an effort to wake up half an hour earlier and get back to doing what led to previous success, riding my stationary bike and sparking. Just starting my day in this way gets my focus on being active and healthy. I am still crazy busy but this 30 minutes of activity seems to lead to a more active day and with a focus on health I am eating more carefully. Somehow hitting this desperation point led to exercise and now I am on a Spark streak of daily morning exercise hitting 6 days today.
I hate being back to a number that I have been at previously. I hate acknowledging that I have not had the success I wanted and have actually been losing this battle but I am here and back to exercising and eating healthy. I don't really know what it will take to stick to it long enough to get to my ultimate goal of a healthy weight and healthy lifestyle but I am back on this journey and so far, in one week, it's led to a degree of success. In one week I have lost 3.4 lbs. While I know the weight loss won't continue at this rate it is great to see it heading in the right direction.
Sunday, September 15, 2013
Just felt like I should check in as I have received some amazing Sparkmail, Sparkgoodies and Sparkpage messages asking me what's up and where I have been.
I have definitely abandoned Sparkpeople for awhile and with that a few extra pounds have crept up and the fitness minutes decreased. Believe me I want to be here, I want to be active and I want to be eating properly but life has thrown a few challenges my way and I have taken them on.
The biggest challenge I have recently accepted is taking on the role of principal in an inner city school. This school is amazing, with teachers who put their heart and soul into difficult job. We have many immigrant families coming through our doors, unable to speak English and hoping we can provide their children with the tools they need for success. Along with these families, we have others who are very poor and beset by difficult life circumstances. Our school though small, provides breakfast and lunch programs for the kids, special English classes for the students as well as the parents, through community donations we provide clothing and furniture to the families that cannot afford these purchases. There is so much happening at this school, and in my role as principal, I oversee the programs as well as the learning of the students. This job has been crazy, busy, overwhelming, challenging, exciting and fun. I am loving it but it has a life of its own and my next challenge is trying to contain it and finding a way back to taking care of my health and fitness.
On the home front, there are struggles as my DW has been battling health issues that do not seem to want to go away. The medication she takes seems to create other problems, stomach pains, vision problems, headaches and more. But if she does not take them, the original health concern is only aggravated and the days get very difficult. Unfortunately my DW has found that her once close friends have fallen to the wayside and her burden seems too much too bear. I wish I could get her to join Sparkpeople as this is a community that always seems to care.
Somewhere in this picture I do have my two amazing daughters. They continue to bring joy to each and everyday but I know they are also challenged by my new job, my DW's health problems and their own school work and more. I am so thankful that they are doing well. Hey, my oldest has gone 64 days seizure-free and my youngest is doing well and happy at school.
Believe me, I do want to be here on Spark and seeing how all of you are doing, cheering you on. I am actually surprised that I am here today but I felt like I was missing something and had to peek in on all of you.
So many of you amaze me. You persist through difficult times and you find time to encourage and support the wayward Sparkpeople like myself. I appreciate the Sparkmail I have received, the Goodies that have come my way and the messages on my Sparkpage. I would like to respond to each and every one of them but haven't, believe me, it is not for lack of caring.
I am hoping to be back here more often and providing support to all of you but for the meantime it is going to be sporadic. I will pop in and out of hiding but briefly.
Until the next time, good luck on your adventure to better health and fitness,
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