Monday, August 30, 2004

Eat less, exercise more

Why is the simple formula of eating less and exercising more so hard for people to grasp? Maybe because it's so simple, yet so difficult to implement. It's certainly not trendy.

Quite frankly, it works. I've been doing my workouts and really watching how much I'm eating and the weight is slipping off again. I know when I plateau, some thing is not right: either I'm going over my calories, or I'm not working out enough.

It takes a considerable amount of sacrifice to not "treat" yourself. That's my problem. I want to have ice cream, but I make the decision to only have it once a week. Sacrificing is hard and we live in a society that doesn't reward sacrifice. Life is full of things out to sabotage a healthy diet (just watching TV can be hard with all the crap food they advertise). The "oh, one cookie isn't going to hurt you"... well as a matter of fact, yes it can. It'll take me an extra hour on the treadmill to work off half those calories for that cookie, thank you very much.

Part of me still is very resentful to those who don't care (or even need to care) about what they're eating. I watch a baseball game on TV and see the junk that people are eating, and I'm jealous. Tonight I will be going to Stitch n Bitch at Barnes and Nobles and everyone will have something to eat. It's a challenge for me, but I don't eat after 7:00 and I can't afford the 400 calories that a Starbucks coffee contains (or the fat in a cookie).

It will be easier tonight, as I've reached my August goal of below 163 lbs. I hit 162.8 lbs this morning. My size 16's no longer fit. I would say I feel good, but that wouldn't be honest. In actuality, I'm hungry, I'm sore and tired and I'm mostly irritated (and let's not forget jealous), but it's for my health so it's worth while.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Why Food Logs are important

I haven't been logging my food for a couple of weeks. Let's face it, it's annoying as hell to keep track of everything I eat. I'm paying for it with a plateau. I had hoped to get down to 163-162 lbs by the end of August and I'm about 164.4 lbs (this morning). I still have a week, and a pound in not an unrealistic goal, but I'm going to track the food very meticulously for the next week.

I'm not willing to put more work into my workouts. I'm already spending an hour a day as it is (well, let's say 5-6 days a week). That means I've got to look at my eating again.

The other thing I've got to keep reminding myself is that I've got to watch what I'm eating, not just how much. I really want that cholestrol number to drop.

It's funny, but I went and looked at the guidelines for how to lower your cholesterol and I don't think it's enough (as I was already working out 3 days a week as per the guidelines and pretty much following the diet. I was even losing weight as my cholesterol was going up). I think there's a fear that people will be overwhelmed by how much work it actually takes and it's just easier to prescribe medication. I found a great article about that here.

So back to the icky food logs. Immediately I see where I'm not reaching my goal in protein (which can be a challenge while I'm cutting down on animal fats). So I'm looking at tasty options on how to raise the protein without raising my fat levels. Fruit smoothies with egg whites may be an option. I'm also going to have to look at some soy products to see what I can do to add those.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Working Hard

I'm getting into a comfortable routine and starting to recognize how my body reacts to different workouts.

I try to vary the type of cardio I do so I don't get another overuse injury (or bored). I've been switching between the treadmill and the recumbant bike for a while now. Yesterday, I had no strength on the bike and decided I needed to use the mini-stepper more often.

I like the mini stepper for the most part. It's a hard cardio workout (especially if I do arm movements with it), but I can only do it for 20 minutes (or it over heats and the welds weaken. I know this from experience). So it's a short, efficient, supplimental workout. It's great for warming up before doing weight lifting.

I haven't really been weighing myself very often. When I have, there hasn't been much movement. Which is fine. It's also typical. Those first 12-13 lbs came off very steadily (tho' it didn't feel like that at the time) and I will expect my body to adjust to the reduced calorie and workout regimine. As Matt keeps reminding me: it's a marathon, not a sprint. I"m trying to lose 2-4 lbs a month, and that's about what I'm averaging.

So I'm still on track and feel that I'm going in the right direction.

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Who ordered this wagon, and why do I keep falling off?

Well, after some sucess, I've lost focus again. Such is my life. It was a bad week between Matt traveling and his birthday. Such is life. There will always be detours and my key is get my focus back.

I also always lose motivation when I acheive sucess. I'm down a dress/jeans size and I'm at a weight I haven't seen in years. The problem is that I get bored with the tracking and the exercise.

I do think I've learned something important about myself. I have found an odd motivation factor: proving other people wrong. I am so anti-"low carb" diets it isn't even funny. I really want to prove that it's not the way to lose weight. It's about balance and activity.

I also look at some people around me and realize that I don't want to be that lazy. I didn't realize how much laziness bothers me until I saw it in others. I don't want to be like that. I want to be an active, healthy woman. Not a fat lazy slob. So I'm off to get my fat lazy ass on the treadmill so I can turn into the active healhty woman I want to be.

Thursday, August 05, 2004

Positive Attitude

I was looking at some of my titles for my blog and I realize that I've got a pretty negative attitude. I know that's part of my basic personality, but I also think that I'm still holding a lot of resentment about me having to take such responsibility towards my health. I see it like paying taxes. Something that has to be done, but something I really don't want to do.

How do I get a positive attitude? It's really hard for me. I'm actually more sore and tired now than I was when I was over 200lbs. I also think that my "appearance" isn't important enough for me to use as a motivation factor. I know that seems odd, and I look at the pictures from 2002 and I know that I'm glad that I don't look that way anymore. I guess I just don't care enough to use it as motivation.

I have to remind myself of my health. This isn't about vanity or appearance, but being active as I get older. I work hard now, so Matt and I can do those things later that we talk about (no, I don't want to bike to the top of Alpe d'Huez... I'll leave that to Matt, but that doesn't mean that I don't want to be able to go places and see things).

So I use the weight loss as a barameter of how I'm getting healhtier. I'm hoping it works, but quite frankly, I'm much more concerned about my cholesterol and blood pressure numbers than my pounds lost. I just can't check those as often as I can my weight.

So saying that, I can officially say I've lost 50lbs over the last 2 years. I'm still a long way to my healthy weight goal, but the knowledge that I can acheive that kind of weight loss is something I can remind myself as I struggle with the workouts. (I'm finding boredom sets in about halfway thru my workout and I need some kind of motivating focus to keep going instead of saying: "hey, 1.5 miles on the treadmill is really good, you don't need anymore than that...wouldn't you rather be knitting than sweating???").

So I'm looking for motivation. Or distraction. Or a stronger work ethic.

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

You've come a long way baby...

Every once in a while I get very frustrated with my progress. I resent how much work taking care of myself is. Then I remember how far I've come...

Those were taken in March of 2002. That's not quite at my heaviest, as I had already dropped below 200lbs when those were taken. I maxed at 214lbs.

I took them so that I can motivate myself and keep track of my progress. To remind myself how hard the losing is and it's easier to maintain, than it is to gain and have to lose it again.

This process is hard, and anyone who says differently either hasn't been there or is trying to sell something. I grow tired quickly of food tracking, working out daily and having my life revolve around what I'm eating and when I'm going to work out. I've got to remember that it's all worth it at the end of the day.

Why post such pictures? If we don't learn from our past, we are destined to repeat historyl