Where I’m At and Where I Want to Be (Day 37 of 83)

I was going to put together a fancy Excel chart to show my progress lines over the past month, but decided that I actually have better stuff to be doing (like work!) and so I’m just going to summarize. I’ve been measuring weight loss and circumference measurements (bust, waist, hips) since a bit after I started my weight loss push back on February 1st. I’ve seen great results since then, but upon examining the last 28 days more closely, I see that I have mixed reviews for myself.

Where I’m At

I’m not trying to be overly critical of myself. I mean, pounds lost are pounds lost. Inches lost are inches lost. Nonetheless, as a writer with a degree in biology, I can’t help but try to extrapolate a pattern from the data I’ve collected.

date weight (lbs.) bust (in.) waist (in.) hips (in.)
2/16 196.8 39.75 36 44.5
2/24 197 39.75 34.75 44.5
2/27 194 39.25 34.5 43.5
3/1 192.2 39 34.5 42.75
3/11 189.6 38.75 34 42.25
3/15 190.6 38.5 34 41.5

I experienced one week of gastroenteritis during the past month, but the only “okay” weight loss of 6.2 lbs. in the past four weeks is truly due to me being too carefree with my eating and drinking habits on the weekend. I love the weekend! I live for it! Look at 3/11 to 3/15, for example. I was 189.6 on Friday but made zero progress over the weekend. In fact, I gained a pound! Why is that!? I know exactly why. I drank more alcohol than I should have and made poorer food choices than I set out to. I even woke up on Sunday morning pleasantly surprised that I didn’t have a hangover. On Friday, I wouldn’t have guessed that that’s how I would start my day only two days later.

Unfortunately, I still associate having a good time with eating less healthy foods. It’s going to take a little time for me to move past that. 

The good news is that I still made progress. I am grateful that I don’t weigh more than I did a month ago! I’m glad that I’m closer to being a standard size 12 again. I’m glad that my arms look a bit better sleeveless. I’m glad that my size 14s are feeling looser. 

Where I Want To Be

I’m participating in a Diet Bet which will have me weigh in between 3/25-3/26. I still have four pounds to lose between now and then to win it. I accept that I may not meet that goal, but I also know that it’s possible. The only way that it’s possible, however, is if I skip alcohol completely between now and then. I’ll also have to be more stringent in watching my calorie counts and protein grams. We’ll see what I can do.

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Where I’m At and Where I Want to Be (Day 37 of 83)

Pre-TTC Weight Loss, Part Two (Day 36 of 83)

It’s kind of remarkable how much time flies once you pass age 30. I remember the summer that I was 28. I felt like that summer would go on forever! Every day seemed longer than the last. At 34, I’m not only aware that there really are limits to what one can do in a day, but I’m aware that I won’t be blessed to wait until I’m 50 (as I wish that I could) to have my first child. 

Almost a week ago, I realized that it would be best for the future baby and for my post-baby self if I make a big push to lose weight before conception. I skimmed through some of the more recent studies about the effect of being overweight on pregnancy, the baby’s mental capabilities, the baby’s chances of becoming overweight as a child… I ended up coming to the conclusion that the correlation between a mother’s high BMI at the point of conception and the risk of pregancy complications was solid enough that I must make every attempt to get down to “normal weight” before we start trying.

SIGH. I’m going to be 35 in May. It seems like everyone from OB-GYNs to lay people use 35 as a line of demarcation between youthful carefree fertility and old lady last ditch baby making. I really wasn’t in a place in my life to have children before now, so there’s really no point in me regretting having waited. I’m glad that I did. 

Because I did wait, though, I can’t spend the next year or two trying and failing to get down to my goal weight. I have limited time to make this happen. 

I’m 5’6″ and at 189 lbs. (I 205.3 on Feb 1st!) I have a BMI of 31.4. My goal is to get down to 160 lbs. (BMI 26.6 – still overweight, but on lower end of the range) by summer solstice on June 20th. I just chose summer solstice because it’s a non-arbitrary date in June and is also mid-year. That gives me 14 weeks and one day from today to meet my goal, which is a loss of a hair over 2 pounds per week. I CAN DO THAT!

Pre-TTC Weight Loss, Part Two (Day 36 of 83)

Pre-TTC Weight Loss, Part One (Day 31 of 83)

I’m watching an old season of The Biggest Loser on Hulu (ugh, why do I watch this show!?) and yesterday caught an episode in which one of the trainers really pushes for a contestant to ‘fess up about why they’re overweight. Watching another overweight person struggle with the truth of why they’re overweight is thrilling reality show voyeurism, for me. Maybe it’s because I get to see someone else struggling and feel less alone? I mean, I know my why.

The thing for me to confess is the why for my big push to lose weight, now.

My husband and I are soon going to be TTC (“trying to conceive”) for the first time. To be honest, this is the most compelling reason for me, beyond any other basis of my previous temporary/failed efforts. Yes, I know that I should be doing this for my health. In theory, that should be the primary motivator. It’s just not. It’s a happy side effect, but it’s not my motivation. I mean, my weight has fluctuated wildly my entire life. When I was a teen and after break ups, I went on weight loss bursts to be sexually attractive to a greater pool of potential suitors (wink). When I was in my late-twenties, I used athletic goals to motivate me, such as running my first half marathon (did not lose weight AT ALL) or becoming a better rugby player (did work).

I don’t know why TTC has been such a great motivator for me. Maybe I feel like I’m heading toward a “point of no return.” Shrug. Many women have proven that you can not only bounce back from pregnancy but with effort, become even fitter than you were pre-baby. I just want to give myself every advantage, knowing my spotty body history.

 

Pregnancy fitness
Image courtesy of Bella Falconi, the amazing Brazilian fitness model. Find her on YouTube.

I’m going to be 35 years old, this year. So, yeah, the clock is ticking. Loudly.

More on this to come in part two.

Pre-TTC Weight Loss, Part One (Day 31 of 83)

Breaditation (Day 23 of 83)

“I love bread.”

Most people do, Oprah Winfrey. Dang, that’s a good commercial. In my opinion, it’s the best Weight Watchers commercial ever. If you haven’t seen it, check it out. You’ll see what I mean. Disclaimer: I’m not a Weight Watchers participant or employee or even stockholder. I’m just saying that Oprah knows how to hook people.

The truth is, I really love bread, too. I mean LOVE. There’s a part of my soul that would be lost if I never ate bread again.

I’ve gone through South Beach Diet’s phase 1 twice, I’ve done Atkins twice, and I took a feeble stab at Paleo but quit because I was a biology major and despised the argument that we’re “supposed to eat like cave men.” I have done calorie restriction where I ate a lot of processed foods and constantly felt like I was starving. I even took diuretics and flushed my meals down the toilet for a while when I was in high school. Major sadface to that period of my life.

 

whole wheat bread loves
Image courtesy of Bart Everson on Flickr.com.
 
The problem with everything I’ve done in the past to lose weight is that eventually my love of bread won out. Bread is the gateway drug, you know. For me, lots of bread lead the way to lots of sugar which lead to more fat and more alcohol. I encouraged a lifestyle for both myself and my husband in which our calories spun out of control, we spent half of our weekend hungover, and waaaaaaaay too much money was leaving our bank account to feed a delivery habit.

A month ago, my husband and I started on our track to rein ourselves and our copious amounts of pudge in. BUT.

This is a big “but” (no pun intended).

WE DIDN’T GIVE UP BREAD.

Instead, as Oprah says in her commercial, we started managing it. We’re basically like those people who smoke weed in a managed way but don’t let it overrun their lives. Not that we smoke. Oh, you know what I’m saying.

The only bread that we eat these days, with the exception of the rare and mindful act of eating out (twice, last month), is bread that I’ve made at home. That’s not my bread up there, by mine is just as attractive and is incredibly delicious. No false modesty here! When we need tortillas, I make tortillas. You get the idea. The act of baking our own bread has made us much more aware of how much of it that we are eating, what exactly it is that we’re putting into our mouths, and the time involved in producing another loaf. It doesn’t take that long to make a good loaf, but it’s long enough that I wouldn’t want to do it every other day. You feel me?

One month in, and I know that this is not just a phase. I can maintain mindful carbohydrate intake like this for the rest of my life. This is sustainable.

Breaditation (Day 23 of 83)

Let’s Get Lost – 4% Weight Loss Challenge (Day 21 of 83)

So, since I’m 33% of the way to my departure to Thailand (WHEE! I can’t wait for day 83!), I thought that I’d like to put a little challenge to myself in order to keep my momentum and focus strong. I participate in DietBet, and am just at the end of my first challenge. If you’re not familiar, DietBet is like, the best idea ever. Basically, you bet against yourself as to whether or not you can lose 4% of your bodyweight in 28 days. That’s a 1% loss per week, which is totally reasonable. For a 150 lb. person, that would be 1.5 pounds/week. Doable, right? Totally doable.

I just crushed my first challenge and one of the reasons why is because I had this nagging voice in my head that was like: “Trixie. Do you really want to lose the $30 you threw down three weeks ago over a sugary margarita?”.

In my mind, the voice was Chris Evans, but that’s neither here nor there.

Original image courtesy of Robert S. Donovan on Flickr.


Anyway, starting today, I’m going to challenge myself to lose 4% of my bodyweight by Easter. With a starting weight of 192 lbs., I’ll need to lose about 7.7 lbs. (rounding up) to meet my goal. That’s a weigh in goal of 184.3 lbs. by Easter. I WILL DO THIS. Just watch me.

Let’s Get Lost – 4% Weight Loss Challenge (Day 21 of 83)

Getting Organized (Day 19 of 83)

I’m pretty sure that everyone heard about that study about messy kitchens leading to increased calorie consumption. I was inspired to get a little organizing and cleaning done yesterday, in order to assist with that feeling that dieters really need: to feel in control. I got a lot done! It’s not like my kitchen looks like something out of Sunset magazine or anything, but at least it feels less cluttered.

I got to thinking about my life and the relationship between my sense of control and my weight. Without doing a scientific study of it, I can safely say that the less in control that I feel (major bouts of depression, anxiety, huge stressors at school and work) the more that I gain.

I associate the happiest times of my life with when I was in better shape, but is it because that I was slimmer? Upon reflection, I think that was only maybe 25% or at best 33% of it.

Getting Organized (Day 19 of 83)

Non-Scale Goals, Revised (Day 12 of 83)

A couple of posts back I came up with a list of non-scale victory goals. I was caused to reflect a bit this morning while I watched an episode of Extreme Weight Loss (Chris Powell!). Laird Hamilton and Gabrielle Reece showed up to mentor a woman going through a big weight loss in her goal to get back into surfing. Like, OMG. If Laird Hamilton were to mentor me with his super-amazing-Olympic-wonder-wife Gabrielle Reece… I’d probably pee myself with excitement in the ocean!

Anyway, the lady who was working on her weight loss said to Laird something about having injuries and how they totally caused her to gain a TON of weight. And Laird was like (paraphrasing), “Yeah, I’ve broken so many bones, but I got back on that surf board. It’s how you deal with injuries that makes you blah blah blah.”

As I said, I was paraphrasing, okay?

It just so happens that I’ve always wanted to learn to surf. I live less than 2 miles from Venice Beach. I experienced an ankle injury recently which I blamed for myself gaining 20 pounds (not exactly true).

My previous NSV goals:

  • Feel comfortable wearing a pair of shorts.
  • Waist: <32″ | Hips: <40″
  • Wear an actual swimsuit to the actual beach.
  • Waist: <30″ | Hips: <39″
  • Get up to Skull Rock at the top of the Temescal trail with less than four breathing/water breaks.

Revised NSV goals:

  • Take at least one private swim lesson to get back into the swing of things.
  • Get up to Skull Rock at the top of the Temescal trail with less than four breaks.
  • Take first surfing lesson by beginning of summer.

Back to what Laird said (damn, he’s good looking! he should be in the new Point Break movie. not those lame kiddos): IT’S HOW I DEAL WITH THE INJURIES. I’ve been dealt some seemingly bad cards, but that doesn’t mean that I have to fold. If I treat myself like an athlete and know my limitations and work hard within them, the comfort wearing shorts and smaller waist/hips… That’ll happen.

image

Photo courtesy of Neerav Bhatt on Flickr.

Non-Scale Goals, Revised (Day 12 of 83)