Some Days, It Feels Like You Just Can't Win

Monday, December 01, 2014

I'm still stuck in my plateau on weight. I'll lose weight and feel like I'm on a good trend, then it'll just all come back again and start me over. It's majorly discouraging.

I've tested for sleep apnea (nope), gotten my headaches pretty much under control (woo! even if it required medication), and continue to work out regularly and not go crazy with food. So I took a hard look in other areas of my life to see if I could figure out what's going on with me.

Whenever I have time off and I'm visiting with my folks (either me to them, or them to me), I always lose weight. This past visit, I lost six pounds the week they were here (they didn't stay off). Whenever my parents are around, I don't particularly watch what I eat, and I don't usually go to my workouts (either because I'm out of state, or because I'd rather be spending time with them). Yet, I lose weight.

I think I've narrowed it down to two factors. Sleep timing, and general movement:

When I'm spending time with my folks, I don't get up quite as early as I have to for work, and as a consequence, I'm more alert, in a better mood, have more energy, and am less susceptible to my headaches. It's not the number of hours of sleep (I get 7-8 every night), it's the timing of those hours. I've never in my life been a true morning person, and it's only becoming less and less so over time. Instead of having to be at work at 08:00, even just a shift to 08:30 makes a huge difference for my energy levels, my mood, and my headaches.

Where I got general movement from, is when I'm with my folks, we're rarely sedentary. I don't always get as many steps as I do from my hard workouts, but I'm moving more throughout the entire day. I think this is the key, instead of relying on working out really hard.

My challenges:
I've already talked to my boss about adjusting my work hours and currently, it's a no go. I'm not giving up on it and will continue seeing what I can do to adjust.

The other challenge is to find ways to constantly keep moving while at work, when my job is basically anchored to the computer. The nature of my work means I can't just stop every hour for mini-workouts, and I don't currently have the resources to attempt a standing workspace. (Additionally, my boss is strangely against standing workspaces, and nobody's quite sure why. I'm going to have to keep working on that too)

So... A potential plan, but currently doomed to never get off the ground. I continue to brainstorm, but ultimately, I'm not sure what to do.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • SBEAR5
    I can certainly see how this would be frustrating. Sometimes it'd be nice if our bodies have us a print out or something. LOL Just tell us what it is!!

    I hope you're finding what you need. Sounds like Amanda already had some sound feedback. I hope your boss eases up and let's you do more.
    1873 days ago
    Yeah, I've been doing a lot of reading too. So, right now, I'm attempting to just move more in a general sense. I reorganized my office yesterday to make things slightly more inconvenient. I put my phone and printer up on stands (which, bonus, gives me more desk space!) to mentally remind me to stand up to use them. I can still reach them from sitting, just in case a client needs me at the computer, but it's slightly more awkward.
    I'm trying to remind myself to stand up now and again too, since that was what all my reading agreed was the most help. I even threw in a few desk push-ups (inclined!) several times yesterday. My boss is okay with that, as long as I'm not ignoring my phone or people who need me, and get my work done. She's big on health and fitness, just has a few blinders here and there. I'm definitely lucky in that.
    1873 days ago
    I've been reading a LOT about sitting and weight gain/retention lately. And I know that I've noticed very similar trends as you. If I'm getting up earlier, even if it's the same amount of sleep, I am still more exhausted - same with going to bed later, for that matter. I'm neither a morning nor a night person, but halfway in between! Additionally, in months that I'm really focused on a manuscript and thus sitting a lot more, even if I work out the same, get the same number of steps, eat the same, I still gain weight, because I'm off my feet and on my butt a lot more. I really believe it makes a huge difference. One article I was reading talked about how you don't have to do MUCH to counteract it. Just stand up and move your muscles slightly or stretch about every 20 mins. It doesn't have to be much, just enough to get blood flowing and your muscles contracting regularly. Would your boss object to that sort of thing?

    Notably, my husband used to be very thin when he was in IT because he was getting up to walk around the building all the time. Now, as a programmer, he sits all the time, and his health has steadily decreased, and he's gaining a lot of fat around the belly. This is despite taking breaks to walk at lunch and before/after work to try to counteract it, when he wasn't exercising at all before.
    1874 days ago
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