Thursday, January 02, 2014
So today, I went way past my calorie range.
I ate the unexpected slice of chocolate cake from my coworker. (No regrets there.) I got hungry during the late afternoon and ate an extra banana. Then, I ate some extra cheese and some unplanned almonds for dinner.
So, I tracked it just to keep a record. I've realized two things: 1) I need extra fat during lunch; 2) I really, really need to plan for that mid-afternoon snack.
The good news is that I went to bed on time last night and am about to go to bed on time tonight. I also made my water and fitness goals.
This is just another lesson during the long run to the goal weight stop on my lifetime journey of health. Lesson learned, and I'm trucking along.
When it comes to nutrition, remember that it's about trackin' and truckin'. Good night all.
Thursday, December 12, 2013
I must admit that I am genetically blessed. After reading a recent SparkPeople blog (http://www.sparkpeople.com/blog/blog.asp?
ize), I’ve realized that I am a mesomorph with a medium body frame. I’ve gained weight, been obese even, but that weight gain always made sense.
But … I've been stuck at my current weight, 20-25 pounds from the goal, for almost three years. I'm not complaining – I’m proud to say that I've kept more than 50 pounds off for almost three years – but as a healthy 26-year old, it shouldn’t have taken this long.
Yeah, sure, I'm at a healthy weight for my height, and that's not going to change. But I'm not where I'd like to be. I want beginner lines in my abs, and to run a marathon by 30. These three years, with all the plots, all the plans, all of the optimism have been a failure. And that’s not cool, because I can honestly say that weight loss has never been that difficult for me. I know what it takes for me to lose the weight. And when properly implemented, my body has always abided by the rules. When I am committed to eating in calorie range and exercising accordingly, the pounds melt off. My muscles get toned in three weeks, and my stomach starts to look tight. But then something happens, and I inevitably quit.
Of course, I can go on and on about how my life has changed so much, and how I work long hours, and how I’m tired all the time, and yadda, yadda yadda. But that does nothing. Of course, I can eat like a garbage disposal now and skip the gym like jump rope and resolve to “start fresh” come January 1st, but like the lovely Sweet Brown declared in that viral news broadcast (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EOMevcsI0l
o): “Ain’t nobody got time for that!”
So I started from scratch. I calculated my daily caloric needs using four different sites and stuck with the average. Then I subtracted a few hundred calories per day. As for exercise, I plugged in my average calorie burn (leaning towards conservative estimates). I increased my calorie range to 1650 a day, from 1400-1500. It was definitely a decision that I didn't want to make, but sometimes, well, you have to adjust your plans when they don't work. My plan of 1400-1500 did NOT work. I spent all of those years battling food cravings and eating extra snacks that I wouldn't track. I spent all of those years hitting my calorie range for the first few meals, and then throwing it all away at the end of the day. So, the reality is that I never really did eat 1400-1500 calories a day. I probably ate an average of 2100 calories a day. That is why the weight didn't come off.
Calorie intake is the key for me. I exercise like crazy, I avoid easy workouts like the plague, but my excess calorie intake trumps that. A friend of mine (who has lost a crazy amount of weight) posted a Facebook meme that stated, “Anyone can work out for an hour but to control what goes on your plate the other 23 hours … that's hard work.”
I love hard work. If I lose 1.5 pounds each week, I can reach 125 pounds by Wednesday April 16th. Just in time for the spring. Just in time to start running outside again.
Monday, April 22, 2013
I started over again after almost two weeks of skipping the gym and binge eating. I won't dwell. I allowed it to happen. It was my fault. But it is my responsibility to stop the cycle. I decided to stop it today.
I wore a sleeveless top at the gym. I successfully decided to pursue a healthy lifestyle more than three years ago, but felt too insecure to wear a sleeveless shirt at the gym. I felt too fat, even at my thinnest. Those days are over. I may not be at goal weight yet, but I have decided to accept my body as is. I am a work in progress. I will wear a red sleeveless top tomorrow morning at Spin.
I bought a pedometer online. I've realized that I binge and overeat when I am sad, lonely, overwhelmed, bored, and at home for too long on the weekends. Three years ago, when I often made $70, even $50 a paycheck, I would walk the pain away. (See this blog: www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=3852669 ) The weather is wonderful. My life is now wonderful. And I will walk.
I ate 1,698 calories today. My calorie range for Mondays is 1,400. I overate at work. Too much peanut butter, and an unplanned lemonade drink. Tomorrow will be better. I went home. I was not hungry. So I did not eat. I brushed my teeth, and applied a facial mask. I don't remember the last time I did that. I have tried many times not to eat when I am not hungry, but the good side never wins. But, today, it wasn't hard. On the way home, I listened to my body. I was not hungry. I decided that it's about time that I took control of my emotions and my body.
The cycle has ended.
Friday, April 05, 2013
I went out to drinks with coworkers on Thursday evening. I actually drank less than I planned to. I did have some french fries at the bar, but the portion size was around 300 calories. No biggie -- if I didn't eat anything for dinner, I would still stay in range for the day.
But I binged when I got home. First, I ate the 300-calorie portion of the pistachios that I planned on skipping since I had those fries for dinner. Then I had some dried apricots. Then I munched on some Tofurky sausage. Then I had a string cheese. Then I ate three Skinny Cow chocolate bars. For a grand total about 1,000 calories in excess.
My mistake started early on that day. I've realized the importance of eating most of my daily carbs by lunch. I usually bring my lunch from home, but on Thursday, I ran low on muffins, and only had one left. (I planned for two.) I also forgot to bring a couple of string cheeses that I planned to snack on. So for the rest of the workday, I felt lethargic and a bit hungry. Perhaps if I ate my planned meal, I would've avoided those french fries and saved those calories for my pistachio dinner as I planned.
Lesson learned. When it comes to weight loss, carbs is a do-or-don't factor. I need them, period. The next time I make daily calorie range before I get home, I will brush my teeth within the first 15 minutes of getting in the door. If I have a serious craving, I'll eat 150 calories worth of protein and produce. I'm serious about reaching my goal by Wednesday August 14. Nutrition is 80 percent of the struggle.
Wednesday, April 03, 2013
This is it. I feel it in my heart. After 2 years, I'm confident that I'm going to break out of my 148-150 pound plateau and finally reach my goal weight of 125 pounds. For good.
I am a planner. I spent the last two weeks planning my weight loss plan, just like I did more than three years ago, when I weighed at least 210 pounds. I pretended that I was at square one and started from scratch.
I broke out the index cards, and wrote down my goals, in the S.M.A.R.T. format:
I'm planning to weigh myself every Wednesday morning (hence the name Weigh-In Wednesdays), and I wrote down my weekly target in the back. My ultimate goal is 125 pounds, but I decided to continue the weight loss equation until I decide what to do about maintenance:
The official start for The Bottom Line weight loss plan was on Monday March 25, 2013. The first week went okay -- I made all of my workouts, but ate way above calorie range each day.
A few highlights for Week One:
Tuesday 03.26: I decided to change my fitness routine and take spinning on Tuesdays since one of my favorite instructors has a class before work. AMAZING class! I literally have the upbeat playlist in my head for the rest of the week.
Thursday 03.28: I returned to a Thursday morning exercise class after a bit of an absence. It was HARD as hell, but I know from experience that my butt and legs will thank me by Earth Day. I realized that plain bagels are my true calling in life. (I went 100 percent vegan for Lent.)
Saturday 03.30: One of my favorite gym instructors asks us about our purpose in life. I didn't have a clue, and I hated that. It's the last day of Lent, and therefore the last day of eating vegan. And I stuck with it all the way! To celebrate, I went to a fabulous vegan spot with my hardcore meat-loving brother. We both agreed that the food was amazing! And I decided that while Lent 2013 may be over, vegan eating will never be over in my book.
Sunday 03.31: I overate to break the vegan spell: pancakes, a chocolate bunny, jelly beans. And a burger and a half. Yikes!
Monday 04.01: This was one of the first Mondays in a long time that I woke up after more than 7.5 hours of sleep. It feels great. My eating started okay, but I eventually succumbed to the last of those jelly beans. Major post-dinner binging.
Tuesday 04.03: I took that spin class again. And again, I felt awesome. Plus, it was in a new, bigger studio. With disco balls and colored lights! Outside of overdosing on 4 Mary Jane candies, I ate pretty well. I happily chugged water and snacked on broccoli at work. I blew calorie range by 200 calories because I ate some post-dinner pistachios and grapes. But I drank tea to stop it from going further. Outside of Lent, I normally eat vegetarian (meat/fish/egg-free) on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays. Only broke that habit once -- more than two years ago! Check out my 475-calorie dinner below!
Veggies: Steamed spinach, mushrooms, and carrots
Protein: Black beans and sliced Tofurky Italian sausage
Dressings: Wishbone Light Italian (my favorite salad dressing EVER!), hummus, and a dash of green pepper Tabasco
Today 04.03: I had a good day. The pre-work workout was ok, but I'll definitely plan for a more challenging cardio session next time. Had a 115-calorie carb attack in the mid-afternoon, so I cut back to make up for it. Clean eating for dinner again -- I had a huge chicken salad (all homemade) for dinner. Blew calorie range by about 150 calories this time.
Upcoming Challenges before 04.10.13 Weigh-In:
#1: I'm going out for drinks with my co-workers tomorrow. I'll need to ignore the peer pressure, and stick with the two glasses of wine I have planned.
#2: My outdoor running regimen will return on Saturday, May 4th. With just four weeks left, I need to stay motivated with my interval treadmill plan so I can run as well as I did in December.
#3: I have some tough fitness classes ahead. I need to remind myself to break out of my comfort zone.
#4: I'm planning to go out to a bar to watch the SU vs. Michigan game (LET'S GO ORANGE, LET'S GO!). I'm also trying to set up dinner with friends over the weekend. I need to leave enough calories for both events so I won't deprive myself.
Weigh-In Goal for 04.10.13: 152 pounds
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