Friday, April 29, 2011

Tracking 1

Tracking consumption.  Calories in/Calories out.  It is not all of the equation, but it is something I can control, and something I need to take more control of.  Today I played it smart, had a day off and did a little cooking, and had enough spare calories that I had a well deserved beer at the end of the day and still came in under budget before factoring in exercise.  Speaking of exercise I got out for a jog and did some work on the weights.  Here are the totals:

Calorie Target (For 2 lb a week weight loss): 2435
Calorie Consumption: 2388
Calories Burned in Exercise: 519
Net Calories: 1869

String together a few weeks of days like this and I should be back on track.

Weigh in 2:14

Current Weight: 287.4 lbs
Starting Weight: 440.2 lbs
Weight Loss This Week: -5 lbs
Weight Loss in Year 2: -2.2 lbs
Weight Loss Total: 152.8 lbs

Anger and frustration.  That is the only way to describe my feelings after this week.  I am going to be honest about this week's entry and let you know right now this one is for me.  I am going to be hard on myself and just know that I know I can take it.  Looking back I find it hard to see where I slipped up so badly.  But that is the thing about this process.  The very littlest things add up.  A beer here, a cocktail there, miss a meal, double up later, overeat on snacks, go to town on some Easter candy.  10 seconds can push me back a week.  Work has been incredibly busy trying to get all of our May 1st clients taken care of and I have not been planning and working with my diet the way I should.  I was working on a staged reading this week, so I gave up the time when I had been working out, so I only got 1 workout in this week.  So, there are the excuses, now on to the stuff that actually matters.

I wasn't as careful with my diet even on my off days because of the holiday and spending time with friends.  By yesterday I knew this weigh in would be disappointing, and I found myself in a "why me?" kind of mood.  That made me angry because I hate thinking that way.  I don't think I am being lazy, but I do think that I am fatigued of this process and ready to be done with it.  I am burned out.  I am fine doing the things that keep me where I am, and for the past 20 or so weeks I have been within about a 12 pound range.  It is the effort of breaking the plateau that I haven't committed to.  Every time I think I am about to make some strides I fall back.  The funny thing about self sabotage is that it is very easy to convince yourself you aren't doing it.  But I know.  I get to a point where I am about to make a big stride forward and then say to myself "I'm doing OK now, I can get away with _____".  And of course I can't. I cant make a pint of guacamole and not eat it.  I can't keep Cadbury eggs in the house, period.  After I do those things I feel dumb and out of control.  "You know better" I tell myself, and then I have a snack because in my disappointment I suddenly feel hungry.

I didn't know that quarter life crises existed, as a term, until this week, but I am reasonably sure I have hit mine.  With all of the changes I have affected in my life in the past 2 years I have probably been in mine for a while, just in a very structured and rational way, which should surprise no one who knows me even passingly well.  I am not an impatient fellow by nature, but lately I have been trying to find the balance between my impatience and my motivation.  How much can I reasonably do to get the things I want for my life in as short a time as possible?  And because I am not afraid to look at my self from a third party perspective I see how much I have to do.  And that is a paralyzing thing.  I may be back to the kind of holding pattern I had before I started getting healthy.  I shouldn't be there.  The problems are so much smaller now.  I know intuitively that I cannot rationalize myself to action.  I just need to act.  Suggestions are welcome.  Kick-starters, support, admonishments, and commiserations would all help too.  have you ever found yourself in this kind of rut?  What did you do, if anything, to drag yourself out?  I think it is time for another couple weeks of hyper-accountability.  Daily postings of calories and exercise totals.  And I am not putting an end line on this time. I am going to do it until it sticks.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Weigh in 2:13

Building on the successes.  That has been the focus of the week.  My diet has been mediocre, but I got in a few good workouts and I am feeling the difference.  My endurance on the treadmill and with the weights has gone up, and I am hoping the positive work will compound and boost my metabolism, help tighten up my trunk where I am noticing some sagging skin, and allow me to work even harder in future workouts.  I am not particularly worried that I did not lose much weight this week because I can tell in the mirror that I have replaced some fat with muscle.  What I need moving forward is a little bit warmer weather.  I have gotten to the point where I can lightly jog at approximately 5-5.5 mph for a good amount of time, but doing this on the treadmill is proving difficult because my stance is as wide as the track, causing me to frequently lose my balance and my legs are fatiguing faster than they normally would because of the way I have to jog to stay upright on the narrow platform.  Our elliptical machine is broken in our building fitness room and it is 40 degrees outside, so for cardio I have limited options.  Once I can get outside I can jog in a bit more natural way, and boredom will not be as big of an issue because my surroundings will change.

I think a good goal this week is to do what I can in regards to fitness work and combine that with a bit more discipline in the kitchen.  I am headed to my favorite produce shop after I finish up this post and I will be spending a good portion of my off day today cooking up some really healthy things for the week.  On the menu are mashed cauliflower, chili flake and Parmesan Brussels Sprouts, mustard tarragon chicken breasts, and maybe my NEW thai basil chicken recipe (cribbed from America's Test Kitchen and fortified with extra veggies).  This week I break into the 270's come hell or high water.  Or not if I don't.  Here are the numbers:

Current Weight: 282.4 lbs
Starting Weight: 440.2 lbs
Weight Loss This Week: 1.4 lbs
Weight Loss in Year 2: 2.8 lbs
Weight Loss Total: 157.8 lbs

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


This will be a quick update and voicing of my frustrations.  I don't feel like I have had a very good week so far.  I went out a couple times and I have not exercised as much as I would like.  I say this to own these choices.  Work has been stressful and long hours and I have not had the mental will to devote energy to making progress.  I think once winter releases her icy grip on Chicago I will get a push in the right direction and get outside a bit more, but I need to work on some better habits.  In particular I need to work on lunch.  I have been eating out far too much.  Not bad stuff, but I could be doing better.  The nature of my job is inconsistent lunch times and quick meals.  It is the kind of thing that I can be a huge challenge.  I need to work on mastering that.  I suppose discussing the roadblocks helps me get a grasp on them, but I am so ready to move forward.  I can feel it coming.  If I cannot have an acting job I need something to keep my mind occupied outside of work.  Mastering myself and putting in the work required to get where I want to go is a good task.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Weigh in 2:12

Another week treading water.  I am not disappointed at all this week, though.  I got in 4 legit workouts, including 2 4+ mile walks, and two all around workouts.  The all around work outs involved the weight tower in my building's gym and then a jog or a go on the elliptical.  I am still figuring out what I am doing, particularly with the weights, but something is absolutely better than nothing.  I can see and feel a difference, too, and so can those around me.  I am OK not losing a whole bunch of weight if I am replacing fat with muscle.  My hope is that more muscle mass will boost my metabolism and help me break this plateau.  We shall see.  Here are the numbers:

Current Weight: 283.8 lbs
Starting Weight: 440.2 lbs
Weight Loss This Week: 0.2 lbs
Weight Loss in Year 2: 1.4 lbs
Weight Loss Total: 156.4 lbs

It is also worth mentioning that this is my sesquicentennial  post.  Unfortunately I will be celebrating by working on my day off.  Fun!  It should only take an hour or two though, and then I can enjoy the weather here in Chicago.  It is still a bit chilly, but buds are forming and the sun is out more frequently, which qualifies as full on spring up here.  I got some new running shoes to help motivate me, and they actually make a huge difference.

Asics GT-2160.  Plenty light, and great support.  My biggest fear when working out is re-injuring my ankles, and these shoes help me feel a bit more stable.
Next week will mark the quarter pole for year 2.  I would really like to smash this plateau to start quarter 2, so please provide your suggestions.  So far my plans are at least 4 solid workouts and a lot of salad.  Other, more interesting ideas are welcome.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Weigh in 2:11

I think I have come to a point I knew I would reach at some point, but was hoping would come later rather than sooner.  I don't think diet with a minimum of exercise is going to cut it anymore.  My diet hasn't been bad lately, though there are better choices to be made always.  I am just not losing weight, and I am not happy with where I am right now as a finishing point.  I did get 3 walks in and some weight work this week, and the results on my appearance are not insignificant.  Some folks who I see on a semi-regular basis have told me I appear to be thinner, and the way my clothes have been fitting do indicate I have been toning up.  That is more my goal right now, so the time has come to really buckle down in the gym.  Walks probably aren't going to cut it anymore either.  The elliptical, treadmill, and weight tower in my building will certainly help, but some lakefront jogs will probably be good too.  I still find running and jogging to be kind of painful in the knees, though.  Perhaps I need to build up some endurance, or perhaps my joints just took too much of a beating from being so large my whole life that running may not be the best option.  Here are this week's numbers and you'll see where some of the frustration has come from:

Current Weight: 284 lbs
Starting Weight: 440.2 lbs
Weight Loss This Week: -2 lbs
Weight Loss in Year 2: 1.2 lbs
Weight Loss Total: 156.2 lbs


I think part of the issue lately has been second guessing my my motives.  I have spoken before about my restlessness with the progress of certain portions of my life.  I know it is normal at this point to have these things, but that restlessness has gotten combined with this journey and I haven't always liked where my thoughts have turned.  "I won't get such-and-such if I don't lose more weight," or "I'm being held back by my size"  both have elements of truth to them, but are too close to attaching my self-worth to my size, which I have struggled with and I hate doing.  I know that the people I want in my life see me for who I am and not for the number on the scale, and those that place too much emphasis on that are not the kind of people I want in my life, but I think any of you reading this can understand where I am coming from.  As much as I try some times I cannot rationalize away my feelings, whether those feelings are irrational or not.  With all of that having been said I sense a bit of self sabotage going on.  I am surprised by how much of my motivation comes from feeling like I am doing this for the right reasons, and when I feel like I am not how fast I get off track.  Am I just kvetching?  Maybe, but I think it is a big part of my journey right now.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Weigh in 2:10

Stalled.  Again.  Here's the deal about this week, though.  I made some choices that I thoroughly enjoyed that were not geared to weight loss.  I went to all you can eat sushi with a colleague.  I had a big batch of guac in the house and I ate it.  When I feel in control and make these choices I don't feel bad about it.  It is when I eat compulsively, or don't stay on top of my hunger that I am disappointed.  So the results are not what I wanted this week, but I was able to enjoy myself and stay at the same weight, which is OK too.  Here are the numbers:

Current Weight: 282 lbs
Starting Weight: 440.2 lbs
Weight Loss This Week: 0 lbs
Weight Loss in Year 2: 3.2 lbs
Weight Loss Total: 158.2 lbs