Monday, May 23, 2011
So, after months of hovering around 152-153...I'm back up to 163. This happened nearly overnight - in a matter of a few weeks, really - and is despite me exercising (running, elliptical, tennis, and weights) more than ever. I burned over 4,000 calories last week in cardio alone. My calories have remained about the same, any way you choose to measure them - quantity, carbs/protein/fat ratios, quality of food, etc...
Overall, I feel better and I'm a lot more toned, but I certainly haven't gained 10 pounds of muscle. What frustrates me the most is my measurements are going up - I've gained 1.5 inches in my waist in the past three weeks. Yikes. I get that part of the reason I do this is for health reasons, and being fit is healthy. BUT...I don't care if it's muscle or fat, I don't want the added girth.
I went to a body fat percentage calculator online - one that takes into account your weight, waist, hip, wrist, and forearm measurements - and it calculated me to be ~25% body fat. That seems a tad high to me, but I'm hardly an expert. As I played with the calculator, however, I figured out that even if I weighed 135 pounds and decreased both my hips and waist by 4 inches, I'd still have 25% body fat, or so the calculator says. Really? And why doesn't it take height into consideration? Because let's face it - I'm 6'1", and if I weighed 135 someone would likely mistake me for a Halloween decoration.
I think I'm going to have my body fat tested at my gym - the caliper method is free - and see what they say. Maybe I'll splurge on a couple sessions with a trainer and/or nutritionist to see where I'm going wrong...because I've been at this long enough that minor plateaus no longer trouble me, but clearly I'm headed in the wrong direction.
Thursday, December 09, 2010
I'm trying to post more regularly in order to enhance my SP experience :) but also because my only real-life buddy in this journey is my son, and sometimes I'm not sure that's by choice. I run alone, and I don't have anyone to whom I hold myself accountable for making healthy choices. As a general rule, this doesn't bother me, but there are times when I feel I should change my headline from "I'm a Loser!" to "I'm a LONER". I do have lots of friends, but none who make any effort to watch what they eat or exercise on a regular basis. In some ways, I think it's strange that tracking my calories is such a priority in my life, but isn't shared by any of those closest to me. Still, my friends seem to put up with me as I pore over nutrtiional guides, make strange requests in restaurants, and debate the lowest-calorie alcoholic beverages on our nights out. I gotta love them for that! Now, if I could find a significant other who was equally as understanding, I'd be set.
Some random thoughts and recent positive experiences:
The office Christmas luncheon is Friday; I've already obtained the nutritional guide from the restaurant and made my selections. I'm excited to reconnect with several former co-workers who have retired, some I haven't seen in years.
I made it through Halloween without eating so much as a single piece of candy, and to date the only treats I've had this holiday season are those I've prepared myself. My goal is to eat an absolute minimum of random junk. When others bring food to work or parties, I like to imagine their kitchens at home with cats on the counters, and maybe a rodent or two nesting in their cabinets. That usually prevents me from eating anything I didn't bring or that isn't on my SP. Sometime before Christmas I'll bake for those in my office. Everything I make is on the healthier side. Of course, I don't tell them that until after they've indulged - I like to see the shock on their faces that healthy food can be tasty as well. Welcome to my world.
Slowly but surely I'm nearing the end of my weight loss journey, and it'll be time for me to transition into maintenance. In the meantime, however, I keep lowering my goal weight. Initially it was set to 160, then 155, and now 150. Knowing me, once I hit 150 I'll want to get to 149...just because. I think ultimately, anywhere in the 150s (okay, maybe the lower side) will be fine - but I guess I'll know when I get there. I know whatever weight I try to maintain, I'll need to buy some new clothes - I now fit into every item of clothing I own, and many of my favorites are too big. I see shopping in my future.
Time for bed. Happy Sparking!
Sunday, December 05, 2010
Wow...I can't believe it! Where did the time go? It's been four years since I started tracking my food and exercise on SparkPeople. Sure, I've fallen off the wagon a couple times, had a few missteps, taken a look at myself and said "oops" - but the ease and flexibility of SP enables me to pick up where I left off, start over (every day, if necessary), and see how the choices I make affect my body over time.
I've found I need to track my food every day, even once I decide to maintain. Blame it on my career choice (accountant), but I need to see the numbers in order to know I'm on the right track. Any other way, it's simply too easy to slip up, and the weight comes back. SP makes this process a numbers game for me, and I'll stick with that in order to keep the weight off.
I didn't own a scale or a tape measure when I started SP, so I'm not exactly sure of my starting weight or measurements. (The 236 on my ticker is once I purchased a scale, several weeks after starting SP.) I haven't kept any of my "fat" clothes. However, I do know that prior to SP, I was busting out of a size 20 from both JC Penney and Gap. Using their size charts, that gives me a waist size of about 37.5, and hips of 48, and a bust of 45. My measurements today are 35 bust, 27 waist, and 38 hips. I normally fit comfortably in a size 6. I weigh 157 pounds. Most importantly, I look like an entirely different person, as my pictures will attest, and I feel great!
I'm nearly finished with actually losing weight - maybe five pounds to go. Therefore, my weight-loss goals for this time next year revolve around my perception of myself. Despite the progress I've made, I still look in the mirror and judge myself harshly. I still see a fat person. I still feel "big". On one level I know that's not true - my BMI is on the lower side of normal, I receive positive feedback regarding my figure all the time, and I haven't found a height/weight chart yet that has indicated my weight is too much for my height. However, I struggle with self-image and am most assuredly my own worst critic. With that in mind, I'm hoping to GAIN self-confidence this year by surrounding myself with positive people who love and support me in my efforts to be happy with myself.
Wishing everyone has a blessed holiday season!
Friday, May 01, 2009
So, it's almost summer and I have a closet full of clothes that don't fit. I bought them all at my goal weight, which I reached two summers ago thanks to Sparkpeople. Last summer, I could kind of squeeze into some of them (and ripped the crotch out of one pair of capris trying)...but this year, there's no chance unless I drop some weight.
Since reaching my goal weight in August 2007, the numbers have steadily crept up. No real reason other than I was no longer in control of my eating, and I wasn't making exercise a priority. I tried to get back with the program by training for a marathon, beginning last August...the marathon was in November, and I completed it but didn't do well. Why? Well...part of the problem was with nutrition (or lack thereof). The other problem was related to my running shoes - it was just downright painful, shin splints, blistered bunions, cramps, ankle trouble. I had used the same style of shoes for over a year (replacing them every 500 miles or so) and I don't know what changed. I hurt for weeks after the race, and I felt bad that I hadn't done better after all my training, so I quit running.
For a while, I had other things to keep me busy. I had a wedding to plan, and we moved to Northern California due to a work transfer. But over time, I missed running, I missed being able to fit into my clothes, I missed having control over what I ate, and I missed my positive self-image. I was married in March, and I didn't want to be one of those wives that gained a bunch of weight and stopped taking pride in their appearance once they had a ring on their finger :) So, with the support of my new husband, I went to a running store and was professionally fitted for new shoes, and I've been unstoppable since. For me, running and a good diet almost go hand-in-hand, because once I start running I don't want to eat poorly and negate my efforts, and I run better when I eat healthy. For me, the benefits of running don't end there. I sleep better, I perform better at work, and I'm not as cranky because I use my running time as "me" time to work out solutions to issues I'm facing.
Bottom line - since I bought my new running shoes two weeks ago, I've run nearly 25 miles, I've stayed within my Sparkpeple calorie range, and I've lost 4 pounds. Best of all - my feet don't hurt! I won't make any grandiose statements that this time I'll stick with it after reaching maintenance, because I've got 20 pounds to go until I get there, but at least I'm back on track, and with any luck I'll be able to rock a bikini on my honeymoon in July!
Friday, December 21, 2007
November was a bad, bad month...lots of eating, little exercise, and overall a pretty piss-poor attitude towards all things healthy. What a funk I was in!
December brought about my one-year SP anniversary, and renewed interest in maintaining the changes I've made. I'm happy to say that as of today, I've lost all the weight I had gained back. How much was that exactly, you ask? I can now be honest, and say that I had gained back almost 10 pounds!
That tells me two things. First - it's easy to get off track, and my body will show the changes. I might be the same size now that I was in high school...but I still don't have that high-school metabolism, and probably never will again. Second - the results will come from getting back on the wagon, and staying there. It's not impossible, just requires a little consistency.
I gotta be honest...in this final weekend of holiday revelry, knowing that I'm back at my lowest weight since starting SP gives me added incentive to play it smart and be healthy!
I hope everyone has a safe, healthy and happy holiday season!
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