Sunday, December 26, 2010

My Charts - Dec. 26

*sniff sniff* My graph, it's ruined. My poor slope.

Check out that final day!

Progress Report LIII - December 26

Last Week's Weight: 193 lbs
Current Weight: 194.6 lbs.
Loss/Gain: + 1.6 lbs.
Weekly Percentage of Weight Gain: 0.83%

4.4 lbs. Past Year-End Goal (199 lbs.)
4.7 lbs. to NEW Year-End Goal (189.9 lbs.)
25.6 lbs. to Goal (169 lbs.)

Exercise Hours: 16:11:55 hours

Exercise Distance: 100.97 miles (9.00 running; 27.64 walking; 64.33 biking)

Calories Burned: 7,360 (1,051 avg. daily)

Weekly Calories Consumed: 15,289* (2,184 avg. daily)

Net Weekly Calories: 7,929 (1,113 avg. daily)

*On Friday and Saturday, a large portion of calories consumed needed to be estimated due to eating foods and recipes not easily tracked via the Daily Plate website. On Friday, 1,160 calories were estimated consumed, and on Saturday, 4,480 calories were estimated consumed.

BALLS! My first weight gain of the new weight loss run attempt. I sort of knew it might happen, what with the holiday and all. Still, it is disappointing because it ruins my graphs and crushes a bit of my spirit. And it was all the result of just TWO days (Christmas Eve and Christmas Day).

However, I'm not going to let it stop me. I decided Christmas Eve that these few days of holiday celebration only come ONCE a year, and that if I didn't ENJOY them then I'd be kicking myself for a year. Because in the end, does it really - TRULY - matter if I put on a few pounds? I can take them right back off, probably as quickly as I've been taking the pounds off up until this week. I decided to enjoy the days, taking care to not enjoy them TOO much. I didn't need to almost DIE like last year on Christmas.

Still, it is really frustrating when you look at the numbers of my superheroic workout week:
  • 100 miles covered!
  • 16 hours working out!
  • 7,000 calories burned!
This was 6 more hours of exercise from last week, 50! more miles of working out, 1,00 more calories burned (but also 7,800! more calories consumed than last week - over DOUBLE).

The only thing I can think is that all the extra calories came in the last two days of the week when I was also getting the sickest. The overload and the weak body probably didn't help the weight burning process.

I am sick now. Sore throat, cough, congestion. I'm not going to stop working out, but I'm not going to push it to the extremes I did last week. I need to take the recovery time this week to let my body heal and get better.

The plan for this week is to still eat fully today (celebrating Christmas with mom today and more family at grandma's tonight). I'll then get myself back on schedule with strictly enforced caloric intake - not at a level to lose 4.7 pounds to meet the New Year-End goal (that's out, barring a miracle) - and 2 hour workouts following the new, more manageable schedule I created (more on that later). I'm going to pass on eating "fully" during New Year's; these few days around Christmas were enough.

We'll see where that puts me. I'm fully prepared (sort of) to see a gain again this week (sickness, off days, new workout schedule, some extra eating), but after the new year there are no good reasons to see any sort of gain. It's back on schedule, hitting it hard to lose the final 25 or so pounds to reach my goal.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

My Charts - Dec. 19

Calorie Update

I decided - after bringing home three baggies of cookies from mom's, holding out against the onslaught of foods at grandma's, and wandering the aisles of the grocery store - that it was time to adjust my weekly weight loss goal, and thus my allowable calories per day. It was set at 3.1 pounds weight loss per week, but that would have given me only 993 calories per day this week. Just not enough by any means.

So I backed the weight loss down to 2 pounds per week, and that boosted my calories per day to 1,543. With the exercise I do, the foods I want to eat, and the holiday temptations, I think this is a much more reasonable expectation. It'll be a huge difference from the past 9 weeks, but hopefully it doesn't impact the weight loss too much. Granted, I don't expect to see my average of 5 pounds loss this week, but I don't want to see a gain. That's my biggest worry. If I see a gain I might give up and the past 9 weeks will have been all for nothing.

I was going to have to increase the calories at some point, why not now? I'm just worried. Worried, worried, worried.

Progress Report LII - December 19

Last Week's Weight: 197.8 lbs
Current Weight: 193 lbs.
Loss/Gain: - 4.8 lbs.
Weekly Percentage of Weight Loss: 2.43%

6 lbs. Past Year-End Goal (199 lbs.)
3.1 lbs. to NEW Year-End Goal (189.9 lbs.)
24 lbs. to Goal (169 lbs.)

Exercise Hours: 10:43:01 hours

Exercise Distance: 50.92 miles (8.25 running; 17.95 walking; 24.72 biking)

Calories Burned: 6,127 (875 avg. daily)

Weekly Calories Consumed: 7,416 (1,059 avg. daily)

Net Weekly Calories: 1,289 (184 avg. daily)

Still killing it, week after week. I'm down a total of 46.4 pounds (an average of 5.16 lbs. per week) after only 9 weeks.

I tried something a little different this week. I ate more calories (68) on the days that I worked out to give myself a few extra calories on those days I knew I'd be cranking out negative numbers. Didn't seem to hurt the weight loss total. I'll continue the trend this week and next. After the start of the new year, I'll be backing down the weight loss, but for two more weeks I'll continue to be militant about it all.

This week holds the toughest day of the entire year: Christmas. Last year I ate so much I was crippled, curled up on the flow aching to throw up because my body went into calorie shock (too many calories of a type I was not used to - straight up sugar and processed food). I vowed I'd not put myself through that kind of pain again. However, there are so MANY temptations. And it's on Saturday, right before I weigh in. This is going to be a tough week.

Going to try my best to make it to the gym 5 times this week. I had good intentions last week, but by Friday I crapped out and skipped my workout. Still, I did manage 4 fantastic workouts, and I was able to log more hours at the gym than last week, going farther, doing more...killing it.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Plan for Tonight--UPDATED

The plan for tonight's workout:

3 hours and 10 minutes
1994 calories burned
[1937 - just short; damn]

Needs to include:

My missing run from yesterday (2.75 miles, with the last .25 mile sprint at 7.6 mph)
A total walk/run/walk of 90 minutes
A bike of 40 minutes
Abs [Check]
Weights [Check]
Pushups [Check]
Stretching [Check]

[PLUS: Pushups!]

Since I consumed a level of calories yesterday based on putting in a workout, I've got to flip-flop my consumed calories today with those (shorting me 68 calories today). I'll still be over in my total calories for the week - when compared to last week - but this was a new plan, and the flip today will allow me to stick with the plan I made for the week.

There, all planned. Now hopefully the tickle of a cough doesn't explode into something worse throughout the day. I don't want anything keeping me from the gym tonight. (Can't believe I was so lazy yesterday.)

Sunday, December 12, 2010

I Wish

I have all these food cravings. The problem is, I see something wonderful

and so I make a low calorie, smaller serving of something along the same lines, and it's not nearly as good. (The pasta I cooked for dinners this week is just a simple rotini, sauce, and cheese.)

That's been the toughest part of the whole diet - satisfying, rather subverting, the cravings.

My Charts - Dec. 12

How I Track

This is how I keep track - in addition to filling out my page on The Daily Plate - of what I've done throughout the week. Just an extra insight into my disciplined, healthy lifestyle.


Progress Report LI - December 12

Last Week's Weight: 202.8 lbs
Current Weight: 197.8 lbs.
Loss/Gain: - 5 lbs.
Weekly Percentage of Weight Loss: 2.47%

1.2 lbs. Past Year-End Goal (199 lbs.)
28.8 lbs. to Goal (169 lbs.)

Exercise Hours: 10:06:01 hours

Exercise Distance: 43.43 miles (7.5 running; 16.32 walking; 18.33 biking; 1.28 elliptical)

Calories Burned: 5,967 (852 avg. daily)

Weekly Calories Consumed: 7,222 (1,037 avg. daily)

Net Weekly Calories: 1,255 (179 avg. daily)

I. Did. It.

I passed over the 200 pound barrier. And not just barely. This week I lost another 5 pounds, putting myself safely below the 200 pound mark. It was a tough week to get to this point. I worked hard to ensure I met my year-end goal a full THREE weeks early. Since I started this journey again 8 weeks ago, I've lost 41.6 pounds (an average of 5.2 pounds per week!). I'm now under 30 pounds from my goal weight. It just blows my mind to think that I've come so far so fast.

The hard work I mentioned? This week I exercised 3 more hours than last week, nearly doubled my total mileage covered, consumed fewer calories daily (barely), and burned about 2,000 more calories than I did last week. All of this in just 4 days of working out. I averaged a net of only 179 calories a day. That's a strict week.

In reviewing my data (which I do obsessively), I've noticed that I don't consume nearly enough fat. There's a huge discrepancy. When The Daily Plate calculates its percentages of the different nutrients and such, it does so based on the number of calories it suggests you eat daily to meet your weekly weight loss goal. For example, suppose I want to lose 3.1 pounds a week, it factors in my weight and gives me the total grams of fat I should consume, scaled down from a 2,000 calorie diet. I'm eating maybe 50% of the scaled down recommendation. So that's essentially a tiny amount of fat daily. I'm sure that isn't super great, but the low calories foods and small portion sizes I eat just don't contain much fat. I've always chosen foods with little fat, only now it shows more visibly with this low-calorie approach to weight loss. I need to do some research and find out just how important that fat consumption is. I may have to adjust some of the foods I eat.

Now that I've met my year-end goal, I need to think about the next three weeks, and plan for the new year. While I was sitting out in my hut, huddled next to the space heater at work, I did some planning:

I'm creating a NEW year-end goal of 190 lbs. I am 7.8 pounds away from that goal, leaving me an average of 2.6 pounds to lose per week over the next three weeks. That seems possible based on the progress I've made so far over the past 8 weeks. I gave some thought to the excessive (yeah, I see that) exercise and calorie deficit, and I came up with the following plan. I'm going to eat 1,100 calories on the days I exercise (an attempt to start building back up the consumable calories), while following the weight loss recommendation of total calories on the days I don't exercise (1,032). If all goes according to plan, that will give me a weekly total of 7,564 calories (avg. of 1,080 daily). This will allow me to eat a bit more on the days I need the extra calories.

That will leave me with just 21 pounds to lose in the new year. I'm going to slow down the weekly weight loss in the new year; that has always been the plan. I'm going to shoot for an average weekly weight loss of 1.5 pounds, allowing me to build back up the number of calories consumed daily to a more sustainable level. On this plan, it will take me approximately 14 weeks to reach my goal, sometime around mid-March. This is still well before my original projection of May. Fantastic.

Friday, December 10, 2010

To the Point of Exhaustion

Workout Summary - 3:06:54 hours; avg. HR 123; Walk 1, Run 2.5, Walk 6.19; Stretching; Abs; Weights; Pushups.

Burned 1,877 calories, for a net -841 calories today.

I didn't go to the gym with the plan of a 3 hour workout. In fact, I had planned to workout 2 hours, maybe 2 hours 19 minutes to help round out my total weekly workout minutes. While I was walking and running the idea popped in my mind to try put in 3 hours. So I kept at the walking after my 65 minutes were up. I figured another 45 minutes would be a good addition. That 45 became 60, and before I knew it, my workout was already over the 2 hour mark.

I knocked out my stretching and ab routines (with the exception of one ab exercise due to the strain I was feeling on my already sore left lower ab), followed by my pushups. All that was left were my weights, and I could see that I'd be crossing that 3 hour barrier with them.

I outlasted everyone who was there when I arrive, and all but one of the people who arrived after me. The only guy left in the gym was a man who came when I had only 10 minutes left of my workout.

I was hoping that when I checked my burned calories I'd have crossed over the 2,000 mark, but I fell short. It was the lower heart rate during weight lifting that slowed the rate of burn. If I'd have had the strength of body (and mind) to get on the bike for 15 more minutes, I could have crossed that threshold. But I just couldn't. It took the last of my energy to get through the final 2 weight machines.

Even typing this after icing my left knee, I'm finding myself wanting to close my eyes and drift to sleep. I'm wiped out.

Dead tired.

Still, what a rush. What a workout.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Running Out of Clothes

I'm down to my skinniest pair of pants. I've dropped from a 44 waist to a 38 just 7 weeks! I'm also at the notch I had to create on my belt because it no longer would cinch tight enough. I didn't think I'd have to go buy new clothes so soon, but I might not even make it to Christmas before I need some new pants. Definitely can't go to work pantless.

Don't get me wrong, I'm NOT complaining. In fact, I'm downright impressed with my progress. It's nice (again) to be out of the giant boy pants.

Monday, December 6, 2010

The Week of Killer Workouts (and Rest)

I took Sunday off after a big workout Saturday...and because I can be lazy. I was talking with the Monkey about how tough it is to fit in a workout after my second job on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and we both decided it would be in my best interest to take those days as my rest days for the week. That means I'll have workouts on Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, Friday (if I don't skip this one due to laziness after a movie), and Saturday.

In theory, it seems like a good idea, even though I'm a little worried about two rest days a week. (Seems counterproductive.)

Doing this I have to do all that was I was doing over two days in one night's workout. That makes for an extra long time at the gym. I was splitting the ab work and weight work up over different nights. Now I'm doing all of it, plus some extra biking or work on the elliptical trainer. I'm shooting for a workout lasting around 2 hours, burning 1,200 calories. That would give me 6,000 calories burned in a week.

Just typing it I now recognize how ambitious it sounds. But wouldn't it be cool if I could manage it? I'd be in pretty decent shape after a few months.

I know I won't have perfect weeks - I'm busy as shit. But I'll do my best and catch the rest when I can. Any workout is better than no workout.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

My Charts - Dec. 5

It was impressive to me, so I thought I'd share. Here are my weekly calories chart and total weight loss chart:

Progress Report L - December 5

50th week since starting this twice-restarted journey of loss!

Last Week's Weight: 209.2 lbs
Current Weight: 202.8 lbs.
Loss/Gain: - 6.4 lbs.
Weekly Percentage of Weight Loss: 3.06%

3.8 lbs. to Year-End Goal (199 lbs.)
33.8 lbs. to Goal (169 lbs.)

Exercise Hours: 6:31:56.4 hours

Exercise Distance: 24.9 miles (6.75 running; 11.98 walking; 6.17 biking)

Calories Burned: 3,913 (559 avg. daily)

Weekly Calories Consumed: 7,280 (1,040 avg. daily)

Net Weekly Calories: 3,367 (481 avg. daily)

Simply stunned. There's no other way to describe how I felt when I weighed in this morning. I lost 6.4 pounds this week! That's nearly double what I lost last week.

And I guess it makes since when you look at the numbers. I worked out 2 more hours, covered 10 more miles, burned 1,600 more calories, and ate 500 fewer calories. Still...shocking.

I only have 3.8 more pounds left to lose to meet my year-end goal of 199 pounds. I think I can manage that in the four weeks I have left. Heck, I might even do it this week.

I was curious how this stretch of weight loss compared to the similar run I made at it a year ago. I started about the same time in October at about the same weight and worked hard to meet a similar year-end goal. So I looked back. During this same week last year I only had a loss of 1.2 pounds and was still 8.6 pounds from the year-end goal. I only exercised 27 minutes that week. And the week before, Thanksgiving, I actually put on 0.8 pounds. At the time I was reminding myself to hit the cardio to boost the calorie burn. (Which I did over the next couple of weeks: 4.6 lbs. and 3 lbs.) I was then at 200 pounds, just above my goal of 199. I then noted that the last time I was at 200 pounds I immediately put back on 11 pounds in two weeks on my way to putting ALL the weight back on. So what happened? I got killed at Christmas - even with 5 hours of exercise I put on 1.6 pounds and didn't stop there. I put it all back on again.

So here I am now, at nearly the same point I've been twice before on this weight loss journey - that 200 pound barrier. And with Christmas right around the corner.

People have been on my case for not being healthy or smart in going about this weight loss, but I am just worried. If I change things now, what's going to happen? I don't feel that I've taken anything to such an excessive extreme. I started out obese. I needed to lose the weight and I did while eating healthy (tracking the calories in smaller portions has been the key) and exercising (and I'm not above taking days off - the past two weeks have seen 5 days of rest). I'll set new goals, building the calories back up once I reach my goal - my healthy - weight. It will just take a bit more time.