Thursday, July 11, 2013
A few years ago, when I was almost at my goal weight. I wrote a blog about visiting friends.
It talked about how I enjoyed being able to keep up with the activities that they and their kids were involved in. On the flip side I also talked about how when my friends decided to go to the local swimming pool, I not so gracefully bowed out. Really didn't want to go bare-chested in swim trunks.
I decided this year to strive for a huge vacation involving the beach next year and have started training to do so. The goal is to build muscle and tone up. I blogged about it and asked for destination recommendations.
A dear SparkFriend, all of whom I love very much, politely and respectfully asked me a really tough question. One whose answer has always been part of my life, but that I've never really addressed and put on the table for discussion. I really appreciate my friend for asking. So here it is.
Q: " So I ask this - with love and affection and NO judgment - are you working on the mental side of this issue? Yup, 10 lbs CAN/WILL make a difference in your physical appearance but I have to wonder, is there something else going on that's stopping you from really enjoying beach time now? "
A: My thoughts:
I'm not really a beach person.
I live near a few "beaches". These are ponds or rivers with little areas of sand where local moms would bring their kids. Single people are allowed but not really welcomed. There's nothing really there for me. When I go to them it's in the evening after everyone has gone home and I can exercise, walk or just sit on the beach and reflect.
The real beaches are a few hours away clustered near the city. They have huge populations of single people. Lots of great restaurants within walking distance. I enjoy going there and people watching and taking in the shops and restaurants. At the same time, most young single people there are in way, way Way WAY better shape than I am. Those who go shirtless have the body to back up doing so.
40-45 year old husbands and wives with a couple of kids get a pass in this regard. Single people around my age, both male and female absolutely don't. No one will make comments or snicker. Yes, there are young single people who look worse than I do. At the same time...
**Metaphorically, when I'm at these beaches I feel like the guy who showed up to the black tie affair wearing a nice pair of slacks, a blazer and a tie. I don't look bad, but I certainly don't fit in. I don't take solace that others also don't make the grade**
For me, being on the beach itself doesn't offer a lot besides sun-bathing and walking. I can walk with cargoes and a t-shirt and a tanned body doesn't do me much good if I look flabby and have a paunch.
I don't have that group of friends whose center of activity is the beach. My friends aren't physically active so a game of ultimate Frisbee or volleyball on a beach trip wouldn't be a big enough deal to make the trip to play.
If I go to the actual beach itself it's to see and be seen. My sense is if I lived or grew up closer to the beach, it would be more part of the fabric of my life. My friends and I would go there enough so that it either wouldn't bother me to be in a pair of swim trunks in public or I would have put in the time at the weight room to make the point moot.
I would either be at peace with my physical appearance or have fixed it.
There are malls and parks near where I live. Walking around in jeans and a t-shirt, I am proud of my appearance. I am very proud of my weight loss. I look a lot better than I did 4-5 years ago. From a see and be seen perspective, I am proud enough to show up at the beach itself (even if I don't lose the t-shirt).
By next year, I will own the black tux.
- TD Out!
p.s. Again, thanks to the friend who asked the tough question. I really appreciate it.
Saturday, July 06, 2013
This is not, I repeat, NOT (note the all caps for emphasis) a weigh-in blog. This is a Comp-In blog (focusing on Body Fat %)
If you're looking for a weigh-in blog, many others are still posting them. If you're really picky about seeing one of my personal weigh-in blogs, I strongly recommend going into my blog archives. This one is one of my personal faves:
Seriously, someone with the SparkHandle SPIFFYCAT commented on it. How awesome is that!?
** WHAT IS A COMP-IN, YOU ASK:
I have been experiencing a plateau for the past two weeks. Given that I usually post weigh-in blogs, I figured that my Saturday readership would plummet after 3-4 weeks of me whining about not losing weight (or worse, me bragging about being able to eat whatever I want and not gain).
so instead of posting my numbers in 2xx.x@yy%, I'm making the bold move of posting my BODY FAT FIRST (Mua hahahahahaHAHAHAHAHA). email@example.com
Goal: 21% Body fat by end of July
June firstname.lastname@example.org (First Comp-in)
July email@example.com (-1%)
Mission acomplished-ish. My first comp reading had me at 22%. "OK", I thought, "maybe next week". Then the second said 21%. I was, like, "OK, that's weird. Lets go for a third time." And the third came up 21%!!!! WhaAAAAAT!!?? Two out of three wins the match.
I've been working my lower body really hard between walking, Pilates and leg workouts. I know that's what moves the body fat percentage downward on my scale. Not neglecting upper-body, but not giving it the huge focus that I have been
While I'm realistic that this plateau may still have a few more weeks in it, I'm going back to my 2000-2400 calorie range to get to 195. My body reflects a 1% drop in body fat (or at least a two-thirds of one). While I can't wait to start losing wight again and hit 199.x and 195.0. I'm going for 21% three out of three next week.
Time for my morning walk. The body fat isn't going to burn itself!
Thanks for reading.
- TD Out!
Wednesday, July 03, 2013
OMG, let me just come out and say it:
**Plateaus are AWESOME!!!**
I used to hate them very much when I was struggling to lose weight. Now, not so much.
It used to bring up feelings of stagnancy. The focus being on not losing weight. The one thing that I ignored or never fully realized was that I never gained weight either!
In the last 4 days, I have had one day worth mentioning eating-wise (didn't eat out. Ate less than 600 calories of sugar). The other three were hanging with friends and living life. I didn't go much over 600 calories on the sugar, but didn't really pay much attention to it either.
My eating habits are stable calorie-wise. The quality of my eating this past weekend was poor, but the calories were around the range. Workouts are going well.
So last night, after my workout, I had cookie based ice cream and a slice of super salty pizza. This morning's midweek had me at about the same weight as Saturday (slightly less).
This is the 4th of July weekend coming up. I'm going to enjoy it guilt free. Eat to my stomach's desire. Saturday I will most likely weigh the same 205.x or 206.x pounds as I have been.
Next week, I will start making strides to lose weight again. It will be week three of the plateau. My understanding is that that's how long they usually last.
After that I'm going to (Lord willing):
* Bust through 205 like a hot knife through butter.
* Hopefully hit 199.x shortly thereafter
* Hopefully hit 195 by my 4th SparkPeople Anniversary or the following Saturday.
Bottom Line: I'm glad that my body decided on the plateau for now. I wouldn't have thought to do so!
- TD Out!
Saturday, June 29, 2013
Today was absolutely no surprise. Saw it coming over a week ago.
I've lost almost 10 pounds in the last two months, since returning to SparkPeople. seven of them in June as I've been able to keep my chocolate consumption under control. A plateau was inevitable.
My midweek weigh-ins are usually really sloppy/inconsistent. I'll weigh-in after eating breakfast or after a really heavy dinner the previous night and guesstimate what the weight would be. I make comments/forecasts based on that, but rarely ever post the actual weight.
Official weigh-ins are very regimented. First thing out of bed, before breakfast, usually no eating out at least the day before (often times a Friday night heavy workout).
This week, seeing the potential for a plateau, I took a Saturday-style weigh-in for a midweek and was down a whopping 0.2 pounds (doing exactly what I've been doing the past month). To see if it was a fluke, I did another one yesterday morning and I was up a half a pound or so.
As a final test to see if it was a plateau, I had the worst of the worst lunches yesterday (12" Dagwood, fairly big bag of chips and a candy bar). 235 pound Trent would have had trouble with that lunch. This would usually result in a 2 pound gain.
Given all that.
**THE NUMBERS (pounds @ bodyfat%):
Goal Weight: 195.0 @ 15%
Jan1 Weight: 217.8 @ 25%
May 25: 212.2@23% (The week before I started addressing the sugar addiction)
June 01: 207.4@24%
June 08: 208.2@23%
June 15: 206.4@23%
June 22: 205.4@22%
Today: 206.0@22% (Yep, definitely a plateau)
I'm actually really happy that my weight is plateauing. It's a sign that my weight loss is healthy and that I'm doing the right thing.
That being said, if I keep doing weigh-in blogs in July they're going to be awfully boring. So here's a what Ima gonna do...
Starting next week, I'm going to do comp-ins rather than weigh-ins. Rather than focusing on my weight and lightly addressing body fat, I'm going to do the exact reverse.
My first official comp-in this morning is (bf% @ weight):
22 @ 206lbs
My goals for July are to:
- Work out really hard
- work out really hard some more
- Establish a baseline of 400-450 sugar calories a day (then start tapering in August)
- Get the scale to say 21% by the first week of August (*)
- Be able to comfortably fit into the three pair of 36"jeans I bought a few weeks ago
**So no weigh-ins, just comp-ins**
- TD out!
(*) A dear SparkFriend, all of whom I love very, much has pointed out that body fat scales can be not very accurate. I can totally vouch for that. I started really questioning mine at the 20% mark when I was around 196. I think for now 21% is reasonable. We'll see. It's more about not making boring weight plateau blog posts all next month. The jeans fitting are a far bigger deal.
Wednesday, June 26, 2013
About a month ago, I started eating a lot of foods that I thought might bring my sugar intake more under control. They were based on a site that I found a few years ago.
It's a site whose focus is on Candida overgrowth.
A couple of years ago I bought a book called "Beat Sugar Addiction Now!" by Jacob Teitelbaum. I bought it because it diagnosed various types of sugar addictions and their causes. I strongly recommend it for its diagnostics.
In my case, it indicated that candida growth was, in fact, a potential issue. It gave a very in depth treatment with not a lot of details. I reasoned that if there were foods that could fight candida (which the site I had found years ago had a list of) I should be able to eat a decent amount of them and it should at least knock down the cravings somewhat.
It paid off. On my worst day, my sugar intake is about half of what it was. I hope to eventually whittle my intake down to about 100 calories of sugar and then do a full cleanse/detox/whatever.
This is the list:
Some of the other foods include:
* Almonds (were on the list when I first found it. Replaced by rutebegas)
* Yogurt/Kefir (unsweetened)
I try to have at least two foods/spices with each meal and at least one with most snacks.
There are a couple of other sites that have similar lists. I will start introducing other foods from those as well.
I know I sound like a bit of a broken record, but these foods may not and probably will not help you unless your addiction is based on the same thing mine appears to be.
I always dreamed of the day I could control my sugar intake. I never fully believed that I totally had to give up sugar for good. Today I have realized that dream.
If you are struggling with a sugar addiction. Fight to be free of it. It may not be the same as mine, but find out what it is and research it. If you can handle a more regimented program than I and its necessary/more beneficial, do it.
Don't keep living a life of guilt. Don't demonize foods. Don't just accept defeat. If after fighting, you really do find out in the end that for you it is an addiction, then you can at least be at peace with that.
- TD Out!
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