Sunday, June 22, 2014
I do a semi weekly weigh-in. Sometimes I weigh myself more than once a week. Sometimes I'll go nearly two weeks without a weigh-in. More times than not, however, I find myself disappointed that I have not yet moved from the weight I reached in late April.
I have to remember that take my focus OFF the scale. I may not have lost weight since April, but my size has most certainly changed. I had to buy all new jeans recently. My pre-April jeans were so baggy as to be uncomfortable. I took a chance on buying a waist size that was an inch smaller. They fit in April. They don't now. Yet, I'm still 135 lbs.
Weight training. It finally occurred to me that even though I haven't been as diligent as I would like with weight training, my performance in it has improved. I had to have gained muscle for that to happen.
So, once again, as I did for the first THREE months (or more) of this journey, I have to set fitness goals instead of weight loss goals. I will focus solely on i) extending my jogging speed and duration and ii) increasing my weight resistance.
It took 3 months before I saw any loss at all in the beginning. It took six months for me to break a long held plateau. Last year, I told myself that I would not get discouraged until a YEAR had passed with no or little results. But I also told myself that if I got to my current weight that I would be content with a plateau - should one happen again - for six months at that weight. (It seemed to me that my body would likely need time to adjust to my "new" weight before it shed any more.)
Welp, I'm there; at the elusive 135 lbs that I said would make me happy (when I was 155). I've been there for only 2 months now.
Yet another long term goal must be set.
Saturday, June 21, 2014
Following my surgery on April 10, I had a 3 week long recovery and was stopped from exercise for 6 weeks. That was murder on my energy level and overall well-being. It was great to realize that going without exercise was making me feel so bad.
I had painkillers to take, which killed my appetite. In the first week, I dropped to under 138 lbs and have stayed there ever since. By April 23rd, I was at 135. Today, I'm 133. I hit a low of 132 not long ago.
But I've plateaued since then. Adjusting my calorie intake to this lower weight has been a challenge. I'm feeling most comfortable with 1400+ calories. That's a weight maintenance intake for me, and even a gain intake.
I had to focus on getting my stamina back in running and focus on establishing a weight training routine. Switching my focus there saw a drop in inches on my abdomen. It took two months, but it happened.
But now I want to see weight loss again. I've been increasing my protein shake intake and trying to limit my snacking. After a brief weight increase, I was able to get back to the low 130s this week. I intend to keep going.
The best news of it all was that I was able to take a set back without getting so distraught. That's likely because I've come so far already.
Saturday, April 05, 2014
On April 29, 2013, I began a regime of interval jogging. With an iPhone app called "C25K", I took on the challenge of increasing my jogging speed and endurance with the diverted goal of keeping it at intervals instead of training for a 5K. Though I would eventually test myself to see if I could keep up a jogging pace for 20 minutes or more (I could by July of that year), I returned to interval jogging for the maximum benefit of fat burning.
I reached a peak speed of an 8 minute mile in July. Then I eliminated grains from my diet and my speed plunged. So far my peak speed on no grains (with intervals) has been about 13 min/mile.
I told myself at that time that, at my age, I had to give weight loss TIME to work. I'd spent YEARS dieting, going hungry for weeks or even months at a time only to lose minimal amounts of weight that would return over the course of months again. I'd give up at the 3 month point, frustrated at the lack of weight loss or upon hitting another plateau. This time, I told myself that I would give it a YEAR before I gave up. I decided to set different goals for myself through things like taking on a jogging regime or strength training. I was jogging for three months before I saw any real loss of weight. I'd lost only about an inch from my abdomen too. If it hadn't been for the commitment of a year, I would have normally abandoned it at that point too - writing it off as yet another route that "didn't work".
My year point will be on April 29, 2014. However, I'm having surgery on April 10th. (Elective. Nothing serious). It's been my experience that surgery can bring lots and lots of water retention. With it comes a temporary weight gain and bloating. So, I'm going to have to get my physical stats this week just in case I'm still bloated by April 29th.
And I was pleased with the stats results so far. They are as follows:
Weight loss: 19.4 lbs (From 159 to 139.6)
Inches lost: 19.35 (all over)
Hip/Waist ratio loss: 7% (from .84 to .77)
Jogging Duration gained: 21 minutes (at jogging speed)
Jogging speed gain: 7 min/mile (Nearly cut in half)
Weight training gain: 7 lbs (arms/upper)/20 lbs (legs/lower)
Hunger management: 400-500 cal/day cut (protein shake and fiber use)
My weight training didn't begin until last month. It's my new challenge for the upcoming year. I didn't begin using the protein shakes until January. I plan to continue them for the next year as well.
This is momentous. I never thought any of this was truly possible, although I had always hoped it could be. I'd always heard of how difficult weight loss is when you're older, especially as a woman approaches menopause. It turned out that it IS difficult, but with patience and finding the right hunger management approach, it CAN be done.
In my case, I had to eliminate grains, which wasn't easy to do. I still haven't eliminated ALL grains entirely. I have a Triscuit or popcorn every now and then, but even whole grains will stall my weight loss. I intend to keep using the protein shakes to keep me feeling full for another year.
My new goals now include dedicating myself to weight training and body building (after having read articles about Ernestine Shepherd, who began bodybuilding in her mid-50s). I have a new weight goal that I once thought unrealistic. It's now to lose another 15 lbs over the course of the next year. I also have a new size goal. I want to lose another size or two over the course of the next year.
Just like I did with jogging (which I intend to keep up) and setting goals within that activity, I will now be distracting myself with bodybuilding, setting goals within that activity for the next year.
I want to look like Ernestine Shepherd. I want to be the size I was in my 30s. I want my vitality at peak form to the best of my ability. And I also L-O-V-E the other benefits that come from building more lean muscle. It not only burns more fat at a constant rate, but it also increases your testosterone level. Yessssssss.
Here's to April 29, 2015. I will be 45 years old next year. Bring.It.On.
Sunday, March 23, 2014
My weight loss has stalled at this point. Two weeks ago, I hit a goal of being under 139 lbs. Then, after my son wanted to switch our Weds night dinner venues to a local Chinese restaurant, my weight jumped back up about 4-5 lbs and stayed there. (I know it was the sodium leading to water retention, but it was also some actual gain.)
Last Weds, I ordered a vegetable dish and had only a little bit of meat. My weight stayed the same. So, I kicked back into my meal replacements (2 a day) and my celery snacks. I've dropped half a pound in about 2 days.
In the meantime, I now know how to get past these minor setbacks and past what seems to be forming up for another plateau. I know now that I have to set DIFFERENT goals to distract me.
Last spring, I focused on getting better at running, despite the fact that I lost no weight and experienced only an inch lost in my abdomen. What was improving the most back then were my speed and my stamina. That's what carried me through a beginning plateau that would have otherwise destroyed my initial motivation in 2 months time.
Now I'm at another plateau. I went to the gym yesterday and wrote down each machine setting and free weight setting I did. Mostly on the machines, I'm moving 35 lbs with my legs and in free weights, I'm moving 8 lbs with my arms. That' at 8 reps each set. There are so many ways can set new goals with these stats. I'll just focus on those until my weight moves again.
My body size continues to decrease, but at very slow pace. I knew it would slow down as I approached a standard weight, so I was prepared for this.
Wellness. I has it.
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