Tuesday, March 23, 2010
The one thing I've learned from annual performance reviews and goal setting at work is that goals must be specific, measurable and time-targeted. And on that note, I have taken out my handy-dandy homemade 18 month calendar and come up with a plan. What better target date than Independence Day? It's fifteen weeks from now, which is a nice round number. Here it is:
- Barring injury or illness, I will complete C25K by July 4, 2010.
- I will lose between 22 and 30 pounds by July 4, 2010.
- I will get at least six hours of sleep per night every night. (I know that's not much, but it's more than I often get.)
- I will get my eight cups of water every day.
- I will eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables every day.
- I will drink no more than 40 ounces of diet soda per week.
- I will get at least 20 minutes of intentional, sweat-inducing exercise per day.
- I will spend at least ten minutes per day doing nothing more than reading, thinking, gardening or petting my cat. No television, music, phone, internet, or other distractions allowed during that time.
- I will plan my meals in advance whenever possible, including dining out.
- I will purchase my lunch in the cafeteria no more than once per week, but preferably only every other week.
- I will have one small piece of good chocolate every day. (One can overdose on virtue!)
It sounds like a lot, but I think it's very doable. I need to take charge of my life instead of letting it happen to me.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Two months ago, I was a relatively new SparkPeople user. One month ago, I was well on my way to becoming a veteran and was teetering on the brink of losing my first fifteen pounds. Three months in, I've stalled, gained a pound or two and gotten sort of lazy. I have to ask myself, "What gives?" I feel like I've fallen into the "I'm doing okay, so I don't have to follow things as strictly." Uh... wrong! Now is precisely the time to stick to the plan, log everything and stay motivated. If I'm seeing results, it means I'm doing the right thing and should keep going. It doesn't mean that I can just relax and do whatever I feel like. Or actually, I can, as long as I relax post-workout and I always make sure what I feel like doing is preparing healthy food, watching what I eat, and getting healthy exercise.
Last night, I squeezed in a run before my condo's annual meeting. It's been a while, so I decided to "reboot" my C25K with a return to week one. I was appalled at how tired and out of breath I was. This is not the girl who earned the shapely calf muscles or the loss of two inches around my thighs. The girl who speeds around her building, up and down the stairs, hair flying in a breeze of my own creation. No, this girl was the fat girl trying to sneak back in. And I'm not having it. Nobody invited you back, fat girl, and you are not welcome in my head. I'm going on the attack!
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
Lately, I've been feeling pretty good about the way I look and feel. I've only lost fourteen pounds so far...
Okay, hold up. I have to interrupt myself for a second. "Only" fourteen pounds? That's just over 6% weight loss. And it's almost 20% of the total I want to lose. That's pretty freaking amazing! Okay, now that I have set myself straight, I can continue with my blog post. Where was I going with this, again? Oh, yeah.
... fourteen pounds so far, but I can definitely feel and see the effects of the weight loss I've had. For one thing, it's hard to miss the fact that I'll be hitching up my pants all day because I forgot to put on the suddenly necessary belt I bought last week. Anyway, I feel good. So it's always a surprise when I look in the mirror and I'm not already at my goal weight. For some reason, the me I picture is slimmer and sexier than the me I see. Maybe it's residual effects from the hypnosis MP3s I tried out last year! Whatever the reason, it's made me much more confident and flirty than I have been for the past several years.
It's like Fernando used to say, "When you look good, you feel good. And dahling, you look maaaahvelous!" Only in my case, I think it's more, "When you feel good, you look good. And honey, I feel freakin' fantastic!" And just to emphasize the fact, I bought my fifteen pound reward. (Official weigh-in is at fourteen, but I spotted fifteen lost on the scale over the weekend. It was in the middle of a roaring "no dinner, too much booze and I just can't face eating now" hangover- worst I've had in years and it better be the last time I subject myself to that nonsense. [Word to the wise, never drink with an Irish band and drunk women you met in a bathroom.] But anyway, I saw it and I'm claiming it.) It wasn't the reward I'd planned, but it was the reward I needed- a mid-thigh black double-breasted trench coat. I look like a tall and slender femme fatale in that coat! Sidney Bristow, eat your heart out!
Tuesday, March 09, 2010
When I first started going to the gym five years ago, I used to laugh inwardly at all the guys in the free weight area. There are a lot of guys at my gym who spend all of their time on free weights, and they invariably spend a lot of time between sets flexing their muscles and staring at themselves. It always struck me as funny that these guys were so vain they were mesmerized by their own muscles.
Then I lost 25 pounds through exercise alone. I was still eating junk food, so God only knows how much weight I would have lost if I'd combined that with eating well. I did at least half an hour of cardio every morning before work, then did strength training 3-4 times per week. And truth be told, I ended up loving strength training way more than cardio. It was really great to see how much my body was changing and how much stronger I was getting.
And then, a funny thing happened. I noticed that between sets, I was always flexing, staring, and feeling my muscles, especially my arms. Summer came and I bought a wardrobe full of tank tops and sleeveless shirts- all the better to see my arms and shoulders. I even, briefly, took up guitar because my arms made me want to play, for some reason. I still don't really get the connection, there.
Then I fell off the wagon. I got busy with grad school in late summer and had less time. Took a long vacation in October and had less ambition. It wasn't long before I'd gained back the weight and all my pretty muscles got blurred and soft under the fat. And I didn't want to look at it any more.
Flashforward to 2010. I'm working out. I feel strong. I've lost about fifteen pounds. I follow every C25K session with core and upper body strength training. And in the past couple of weeks, I've caught myself absently touching my shoulders, or flexing my biceps and then giving them a squeeze. The lat pulldown machine at the gym faces a mirror, and I keep catching myself watching my arms flex while I work. Same thing with my legs. Right now, the running is my only regular lower body workout, but I'm already seeing changes in my calf muscles and my thighs. I've lost two inches in my thighs since January and I can feel the long muscle shaping up.
So once again, I'm falling in love with my muscles. Staring at them. Feeling like I can't keep my hands off them. It's a good feeling! And I haven't laughed at those boys in many a year.
Thursday, March 04, 2010
I was just listening to my iPod while working and shuffle popped up a real favorite, Social Distortion's "Far Behind." I've always loved it, but this time it made me think about my fat. So, I'd like to dedicate this song to my fat and all of the bad habits that contributed to it.
"With friends like you, who needs enemies?
You ain't right, you ain't never gonna be
You're out of the car, I'm afraid you've been declined.
You shake my hand, while you're p--sing on my leg
I'm cutting you loose, I don't need this misery
Your soul is toxic, you ain't no friend of mine. NO!!!
You talk real trash, when I'm not around
To build yourself up, you gotta tear me down.
You'll have to excuse me, I got better things to do
You smile through your teeth, you talk out your neck
Every chance you get, you're going to stab my back
Your time's run out, I've got nothing left for you.
I'm leaving you far behind
I'm leaving you far behind
Stop wasting all, all my time
I'm leaving you far behind, Yeah!!!
So I'm pulling out the weeds, I'm taking stock
You can talk the talk, but can't walk the walk
Your narcissistic ways have gotten the best of you
So I'm leaving you to sink in all your glory
For you and me it's the end of the story
Get out of my way, I've got better things to do."
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