Challenges

Week 106 – A bump up

After 3 straight weeks of weight loss, this week my weight bumped up a bit. For week 106 I weighed in at 215.4 pounds, an increase of 1.8 pounds from last week.

I am not really sure why I gained, but I have a few hints:

  • For the week I only did 18.23 miles of intentional walking. That is down from 25.3 miles the week before.
  • I only got up for the gym once all week, and that was on weigh-in day. When I don’t get to the gym in the morning, I don’t get that metabolism boost through the day
  • My Weight Watchers app was neglected all week. I ate mindfully, but without tracking it is easy to eat more

When all is said and done, it is only a 1.8 pound change. The disappointing thing is that I was on a roll. So, this week it is back to what works. The weather will be better, so lunchtime walking outside should be in play, and I will rededicate myself to getting up in the morning.

The challenge this week is that it is my 30th work anniversary, and St. Patrick’s day is ahead.Both of those would ordinarily be reasons to enjoy a few treats. I will have to work out a strategy of eating to take both into account. I already know there is a good chance my weekly weigh-in will be Thursday morning rather than Friday (to minimize any short term St. Patrick’s day effects).

Below is my mileage chart for the week:

mile chart 2016

I am up to 168.7 miles for the year (through Friday). I should be at 194 by now. I am still behind from when I was ill in January and missed 2 weeks of walking. As I said above, with the weather improving lunchtime walks are in play, and with the blessed return of Daylight Savings Time, evening walks with my wife will be possible as well.

Since last July 4th, with only a couple of outliers, I have been between 215 and 220 pounds every week. Here is my weight chart in that time:

since july 4

I have two thoughts fighting in my mind about this.

First, maybe my natural weight is meant to be between 210 and 220. Consider the situation. For the majority of the time in this time frame, I have eaten well, exercised often, and been very healthily. All of my health numbers (BP, Lipids, A1C, etc.), have been in the normal / healthy range and have improved over that time. the evidence would say I am as healthy now as I have ever been in my adult life.

The second thought is that my BMI is still at 29.2, dangerously close to obese (30). My recommended weight range tops out at 183.6 pounds. My original goal was to get below 200 pounds, into the 190s.

So, I am conflicted. On the one hand I love my life as it is today. I sometimes tire of worrying about what food I eat, but I quickly get over that, as being mindful about eating is what will keep me at a healthy weight for the rest of my life. But, I also get frustrated, because I have been tantalizingly close to going below 210, and even reaching my goal, but I feel stalled.

I have no intention of giving up on this. I will, likely for the rest of my life, continue to watch what I eat and drink. I will also continue to exercise and increase my overall health. If I am meant to be a person who weighs between 210 and 220, then I will embrace that – BMI be damned.

I just needed to vent that a little today. Thanks for reading.

 

Week 105 – 3 in a row!

On Friday March 4th, I completed week 105 of my journey to better health. This morning I weighed in at 213.6 pounds, down 0.6 pounds from last week. That marks 3 consecutive weeks of weight loss. I am now down a total of 131.4 pounds or 38.1% of my start weight. I am only 1.4 pounds from my lowest.

The last time I had 3 consecutive weeks of weight loss was weeks 77 through 79, or August 21 to September 4. And, this is my lowest weight since December 4.

I had a good week. Last Friday my wife and I splurged on Thai food. I say splurged, but the truth is that I ate far less than I would have in the past. It was fun to be out. On Saturday we were to have dinner out with friends, and I had mapped out my plan. Then plans changed and we ended up just having dinner at their house. My wife made a low-cal, WW friendly, guacamole – salsa which we had with low sodium corn chips. Super yummy and very filling. Sometime I will get her to write out the recipe, because it is a winner. It is something she learned from her mom, and we just love it here.

The rest of the week was just a matter of good choices.

In the last 7 days I have logged over 25 miles toward my goal to walk 1,000 in 2016. Here is my data for the week, including my 4 miles this morning:

mile chart 2016

For the month of February, I walked 95.92 miles. The target pace was 79.23, so I got back some of the miles that I fell behind in January when I wasn’t feeling well.

This weekend my wife will be away. I have many fun little projects around the house, and I plan to stay on track with my eating. I may even get myself to the gym for a rare, weekend visit or two.

This morning I am feeling very good!

 

104 Weeks, but not 2 Years

Happy Friday! Today mark 104 weeks since I started on this journey toward better healthy.Due to the vagaries of the calendar, while it is 104 weeks, the second anniversary wont’ be until Tuesday. On that day I plan to write some thoughts about what these last 2 years have meant to me, and my goals going forward.

Today, though, I come with good news. At my week 104 weigh-in, on Friday February 26, the scale has me at 214.2 pounds. That represents a 1.2 pound loss from last week. My total weight loss to date is 130.8 pounds or 37.9% of my original body weight. This is the lowest weight I have been since November 20, 2015. And I am only 2.2 pounds away from getting back to the lowest I have been in at least the last 25 years or so.

This past week I logged over 25 miles on my goal to walk 1,000 miles in 2016. Here is my progress over the last 7 days

mile chart 2016

For the week ahead the plan is the same as recent weeks: accurate tracking, walking at the gym and work, and limiting snacks.

Make it a great week!

Week 103 – I swear, my weight is like gasoline prices

Good Friday morning. Today is February 19, 2016. My week 103 weigh-in revealed a 3.0 pound loss from last week. I am not at 216.4 pounds. My total weight loss to date, in 103 weeks, is 128.6 pounds, or 37.3%

Last week I had a 3.4 pound increase, this week I am back down 3.0. Have you ever noticed that when there is the slighted problem in the gasoline supply chain, prices spike over night, but when that problem is fixed it takes weeks for the prices to come back down? That’s how I feel about my weight. My 3.4 pound, one-week spike, will likely take a few weeks to get back down.

Today I am feeling good.

On the subject of my 1,000 mile goal for 2016, progress is accelerating. This week I more accurately measured the walking path inside my building at work to be about 0.18 miles. I have taken to logging how many laps I do each day, and then updating my log accordingly. Here is my progress over the last 7 days:

mile chart 2016

This morning I found out that my phone didn’t charge over night. It essentially died in the middle of my work out, but I stayed on the treadmill to get to 3.0 miles for the day. My intent had been to get to 5.0 miles today. had I realized that another 0.69 miles would have put me at 100 for the year, I’d have stuck it out in silence.

This weekend my wife and I plan to get to the gym at least once. I will do a 5 miler and get myself caught up from today. Also, it is supposed to be 50+ degrees here today and tomorrow, so there is the possibility of a lunchtime, neighborhood walk as well.

 

(Late) Week 101 weigh-in and thoughts on Lent

Good day to you all. I am sorry I am late with my Week 101 weigh in. On Friday, February 5th, I weighed in at 216.0 pounds. That puts my total weight loss at 129 pounds. I am only 4 pounds from getting back to my all-time low since starting this journey. It is within sight!

Here is my update on waking 1,000 miles in 2016 (through yesterday)

mile chart 2016

I am still behind on the pace I should have for making 1,000 miles for the year, but I have picked it up dramatically. As you can see, last Saturday I did a walk for the first time this year. I haven’t gone yet today, but plan to later after work.

Today begins the season of Lent for Christians around the world. Between now and Easter Sunday (March 27th), many of us are “giving things up.” The tradition is born out of the notion of self-denial as a method of spiritual cleansing. The idea is to give up something that we enjoy and do so prayerfully as a way to lift our Spirits.

I also like to do POSITIVE things in the same time frame. Giving up my own personal momentum, if you will, and pushing myself in new directions. I haven’t decided on that side of the equation yet, but here is what I am giving up:

Chocolate, Peanuts, Popcorn, Whiskey.

Between now and March 27, these items are out of my life. It will be hard, especially when it comes to peanuts and popcorn because they tend to be staples in my healthy snacking.

Usually I would say that denying something from yourself, especially if it is not harmful, is not sustainable. And, the same is true here. I don’t intend to give those things up for the rest of my life, but I do intend to have a bit of self-discipline over these next 47 days or so.

Who else is giving something up, or adding something positive for this season?

Week 100 Weigh-in

When I started this on March 1,2014 I wasn’t sure if I would sustain the effort for 10 weeks. This morning I conclude the 100th week. There is a part of me that is surprised that I have stuck to it this long. This is, by far, the longest I have sustained a health program.

Today I weigh 217 pounds. That is down 2.0 pounds from last week. My total loss to date is 128 pounds, or 37.1% of my original weight. For January of 2016, I was down 8.0 pounds.

This was a good week on the walking front as well. Here are my numbers:

mile chart 2016

Right now my yearly pace is 446 miles. That is largely because of missing the first two weeks. Over the last 7 days I have been on a pace that would be 907 miles for a full year. That is still below 1,000 miles, and I am still behind the pace I need for the year. But, it was a good week. Tuesday I elected to do my treadmill time after work, but later decided to come home to await a package delivery. Had I either gotten up in the morning, or worked out after work, I’d have logged over 20 miles for the week.

On Wednesday a friend and I checked a walking path within our building. We each used a pedometer and independently arrived at a distances of about 1/5 of a mile for the path. This coming week I intend to use that path to log some miles at work. Until I find a more definitive way to measure the distance, I will consider it to be 1/6 of a mile.

For the week ahead the plan is to keep up with my walking, track my food accurately, and avoid after-dinner snacks.

 

Week 99 Weigh-in (a little late)

On Friday, January 22, I weighed in at 219.0 pounds. That represented a 1.6 pound gain from the week before. Several factors contributed to the gain, any of which I could use as an excuse, but the bottom line is I didn’t track my eating, I snacked more than I should have, and I ate some high-sodium foods.

This past weekend I celebrated my birthday with my family. I made the conscious choice not to track my food for the weekend. This morning I am back on track, with no excuses, and with no mulligans.

Last week I announced that I have challenged myself to walk 1,000 miles in 2016. Due to being ill the first week or two of the year, I let myself get behind the pace necessary. I have time to make it up, so there isn’t a huge concern.

The first few days of walking at my previous pace (3.8 MPH), made me really sore. I regretted not walking since Thanksgiving. Now that I am a bit more than a week back into the routine, that soreness has gone down dramatically. I am still behind the pace, but I am committed to catching up and surpassing the goal. Here is my chart of miles since Friday the 15th:

mile chart 2016

The spreadsheet for the chart above keeps track of other things as well. It tells me that right now I am 46 miles behind the target of averaging 2.73 miles per day.

That is it for today, just a belated update. Hope you all are doing well!

Week 98 Weigh-in, and a WALKING CHALLENGE

Good Friday morning to you! I hope your day is of to a good start. Mine is, thanks to the fact that I finally have worked out for the first time in 2016. My ear problems appear to be history, and I Feel great. I have either set out, or taken my workout gear with me to work every day this week. Today my desire to better myself exceeded my desire to sleep. It was NOT easy, and I nearly went back to bed several times. But I pushed myself and got to the gym. I ended up going about 63 minutes on the treadmill at 3.8 miles per hour for a total of 4.0 miles. Not since the 10K on Thanksgiving have I walked that much in a single day, and I feel great!!

This morning I also weighed in. The scale showed me at 217.4 pounds, down 1.4 from last week. My total loss to date is now at 127.6 pounds. I am still about 5.6 pounds up from my all-time lowest of 212.0 back on October 23, but I will get there. Getting back to a workout routine helps.

This morning I also began a new challenge. For calendar year 2016 I plan to walk 1,000 miles. These will all be intentional miles, not including any incidental walking that happens as part of my normal routine. So, workouts on the treadmill, walk in the neighborhood or lunch time, and hikes will all count. I won’t be logging miles while I shop at stores, or other more ordinary walking. If I had started this back on January 1, I would have needed only 2.73 miles per day for the 366 day year. As it is, I am starting on January 15, so my pace will need to be closer to 2.83 miles per hour. Here is the progress table I created for myself:

mile chart 2016

With this morning’s 4.0 miles, I am 36.98 miles behind target. But, I have a LONG way to go. This challenge will not be easy, and starting 2 weeks late will not make it any more so, but I am determined to get this done. Along the way I will post pictures from more interesting walks, share how I am faring with it and so on. I am going to use the accountability of the blog to help motivate me to continue when I want to pack it in.

Who will join me?

Week 66 Weigh in – Obsess much?

Last week when I weighed-in I was at 225.8 pounds. That was a 5.0 pound increase from the week before. I wasn’t too happy. On Monday, after some questionable weekend eating and drinking, I stepped on the scale and was at 230.0. I was inconsolable. For the rest of the week I committed to doing things right.

Today I weighed-in at 220.8, or an official 5.0 pound loss from last week. I am back to my lowest weight since starting this blog.

This week I obsessed. I drank every drop, recorded all my food and stayed the course. Because I had tweaked my knee doing Zumba, I slowed my workouts for the week. Bottom line is I got a good result.

On the one hand, I shouldn’t have obsessed about a single point-in-time weigh-in. I should have trusted that what I am doing is right. On the other hand, I had gotten away from religiously tracking, and I am back to that again. So for the coming week I intend to continue to track correctly, but not to be so darn hard on myself.

On the topic of Zumba. It’s not for me. I tried it, and actually enjoyed the sessions, until I hurt myself. With my knees, it simply isn’t worth the risk. The other thing I noticed is that I didn’t come away completely soaked in sweat. I told my wife after the last one that I’d have been better off on the treadmill or bike at the gym. I’d have gotten a better workout and not tweaked my knee.

My knee is doing much better now. For last weekend it was sore, and I did cut back my daily workout and walking routines. If it continues to improve, I’ll get back to normal in another week or so.

Next Tuesday I am getting my last two wisdom teeth pulled. So, if there are any words of wisdom you want from me, now is the time to get them! I expect that with my soft foods diet next week, I should do just fine on the scale. But if not, I promise not to obsess about it (no those are not my fingers crossed behind my back!)

Because my knee was hurting last weekend, I didn’t end up doing anymore exercise walking. So, I ended up at 121.5 miles for the May Movement Challenge. I had dozens of people tell me that they completed the challenge as well. Some who didn’t think they could do 100 miles in a month were pleasantly surprised that they were able to still get it done. To all of you who participated in that challenge, I say congratulations. This month I am trying to keep my own streak alive, and walk 100 again. But I am not going at it with as much intensity, partly due to the knee issues, and partly due to the wisdom teeth.

Until next time…

Week 65 Weigh-in – What the …?

This morning I weighed in at 225.8 pounds. That is a gain of 5.0 pounds this week.  I have no idea what happened. I know that we ate restaurant food on the weekend, which probably means I have water weight gain, but that was 5 days ago. I haven’t been diligently tracking my points, but my sense is that I have not been THAT far off. A 5 pound gain would imply that I consumed 17,500 EXTRA calories this week, and I just don’t see how that is possible.

I am back to being obese.

All I can do is go back to fundamentals. I will return to religiously tracking my food, checking my water intake, and so on. Not at all the way to start a weekend.

Here is my update on the 100 Mile May Movement Challenge:

may movement

With 3 days left, I am at 121.54 miles. I am on pace fro 129.92, and am aiming to get that to an even 130 for the month.

My wife wants me to focus on what I’ve accomplished to date, especially this week. If I were coaching anyone else I’d be telling them the same thing. But right now my head isn’t there. I know that I won’t sabotage myself, so it isn’t like I am off to McDonald’s or Jet’s Pizza today. But I am not in the mood to celebrate success today. I’ll check back later and let you all know if that changes.