The Blog Lives On!

2010/03/13 at 8:46 pm | Posted in Discipline, Exercise, Health, Life, lifestyle change, weight loss, weight loss blog | Comments Off on The Blog Lives On!
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Hey all, it’s me. And I know it’s been a while since my last post–nearly 6 months–so I thought I’d post a new entry and go back over what I’ve been doing since then.

Okay, so my last post was late September. That meant that my son, now almost 6, started kindergarten and I became Mr. Mom by being his chauffeur to and from school. I devoted my time at home to do housework which mostly consisted of laundry. And being that I’m still unemployed, that left a lot of time to sit around the house and do a whole lot of nothing.

It became a habit going into the holiday season and by the time they were all over in January, the combination of laziness and holiday indulgences proved to be a bad thing–a really bad thing.

As a result of this, I was almost up to 205 lbs. and had gained nearly 10 pounds by the end of January. Not only was I unhappy with what had happened, I was angry with myself. Not to mention that my size 36 pants were getting a little um…snug. It’s not like I immediately started eating bad foods again; I just couldn’t control myself during the holidays. And really, who can? It’s the ultimate test of wills.

Another factor was my choice of beverage. I got back into the bad habit of drinking diet sodas once again, something which I had put a complete halt to during my program. Needless to say, it had a negative impact on my weight.

Knowing I had had enough, I kicked myself into losing weight the right way and got back on the wagon.

I started to walk again, now covering between 3-5 miles each time I head out. When I’m walking not out in the great outdoors, I’ve been spending my time on the treadmill and again, running between 3-5 miles or 30-60 minutes at a time. When I’m not in the walking mood, I’m riding my bike at least 10 miles each trip.

I’ve also added something new to my routine. After we got our taxes done, my wife Ann and I decided to buy a birthday gift for each other. I was torn between a new bike or a 64GB iPod Touch and when I weighed the options, the iPod Touch won by a mile. The way I saw it, my bike was still in great shape and only needs some TLC to get it ready for…something. More on that later.

At any rate, my new iPod Touch has the Nike + iPod system built into it, something I had been curious about for some time now. So I went ahead and bought the iPod, the Nike + sensor, and a sensor pouch (since my feet and Nike shoes don’t quite get along).

My assessment as a non-professional athlete? It’s pretty cool. There a number of workouts to choose from (Basic, Time, Distance, Calorie) and each keeps track of your distance, calories burned, pace, and when you press the Home button, your stats are spoken to you so you don’t have to look down at the screen while you’re on the go. And if you’re really good and set a personal best, the voice of Lance Armstrong himself congratulates you on your achievement. It’s cool the first few times but after that it’s completely a novelty.

As far as accuracy goes, I measured the distance the Nike + iPod app recorded against Google Earth. I was surprised to learn that it was fairly accurate, provided I had it calibrated. All in all, it’s a great motivator/workout partner and I’d recommend it to anybody interested in an easy way to keep track of their walks or runs. In fact, it motivated me enough to join two Challenges on the NikeRunning site: 210 Miles in 2010 and St. Paddy’s Lucky Runner Challenge (10 miles in 10 days). And if you want to see my progress, check out my Nike + profile on the NikeRunning site.

Oh yes, the “something” I had mentioned earlier? Here’s what that’s about. Since my knees can’t handle the punishment of jogging out in the real world (but the treadmill is just fine), I have decided to not run in any 5ks. Walks, however, are still in the slate.

Taking all of those things into consideration, I have chosen to participate in the Long Beach Marathon’s Bike Tour, which is happening this October. Yes, 26.2 miles of riding my favorite bike through the lovely city I call my home. I’m actually ready for it right now but I guess I have to wait until October which, at this point, seems light years away. For fun, I will have my Flip Video camera attached to my bike and shoot clips of my progress, how I’m feeling, etc. as the race goes on.

No, I’m not in it to win it. This is something I’m doing to once again prove to myself that I made a lifestyle change, not participate in some fad diet that would have no doubt failed me by now.

Hope you are doing well with your programs!

Phase 2 Weekly Weigh-In #2

2009/01/21 at 6:13 am | Posted in Discipline, Exercise, Life, lifestyle change, Weekly Weigh-In, weight loss, weight loss blog | Comments Off on Phase 2 Weekly Weigh-In #2
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Here are the totals for Week #2 of Phase 2:

  • Weekly Weigh-In #2; Phase 2: 202.0 lbs.
  • Last Week’s Weigh-In: 202.5 lbs. 
  • Gain/loss of: -0.5 lbs.
  • Phase 2 Loss: -1.3 lbs.
  • Pounds to Go: 12.0 lbs.
  • Weight Loss to Date: 95.0 lbs.

As a fella once said, “Ain’t that a kick in the head?”

Needless to say, those numbers are indeed disappointing and I’m beginning to think my scale is getting wiggy on me or something. I can step on it three times and get three different readings–and that ain’t good. And at this rate I will have to shed 4 lbs. per week over the next three weeks in order to meet my goal and you know what? That’s not healthy and I refuse to do it. So while I’ll continue to do the Weigh-Ins, know that there’s a good chance I won’t be at 190 lbs. on the final one. Disappointing, but that’s the way it needs to be.

The good news. I continue to run on the treadmill each night. Perhaps tonight I will take a break and do nothing but the way I am, I seriously doubt it. For as hard as it was to run 1 mile on the first day, it seems that much easier to run 2 miles each and every night. Funny how that works…

Now that this week’s Weigh-In is all done, it’s time to recall what I did last week and make it a point not to repeat it. Let’s hope the same things don’t happen this week.

Gotta go!

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Phase 2 Weekly Weigh-In #1

2009/01/14 at 6:11 am | Posted in Health, Weekly Weigh-In, weight loss, weight loss blog, weight watchers, wii fit | 4 Comments
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Okay, so I know it hasn’t been a full week. Don’t expect much as a result, but at least this will give me a chance to go over things I’m doing different this time. 

  • Weekly Weigh-In #1; Phase 2: 202.5 lbs.
  • Phase 2 Starting Weight: 203.3 lbs.
  • Gain/loss of: -0.8 lbs.
  • Pounds to Go: 12.5 lbs.
  • Weight Loss to Date: 94.5 lbs.

The scale was acting funny this morning, fluctuating between all sorts of numbers. My weight for today is an average of all of them and for the first few days I’d say that’s not too bad. We’ll see how things pan out over the next few weeks.

As I mentioned at the start of this post, I’m going to do things a little different this time around just to shake things up. First and most notably I have decided to abandon my Weight Watchers Point Excel chart for the month, and there are a few reasons for this: a) I need something different and b) after listening to a great podcast the other day, I discovered the importance of BMR.

What is BMR? It’s your Basal Metabolic Rate, or the amount of calories you burn by simply doing nothing–even sleeping. No matter what you’re doing, you burn calories and how many you burn depends on your height, weight and age. (To determine your BMR, go here.) After determining what your BMR is, it’s important to know that that number–mine is 1954.49–is what your body needs in order to maintain your current weight. If you want to shed some weight, simply take in less than your recommended BMR or exercise some more. 

My next change also goes hand-in-hand with the BMR thing. I discovered a fantastic (and free) iPhone/iPod Touch app on the iTunes store called Lose It! This app is probably one of the best I’ve come across because it keeps track of everything: weight, calorie intake, activities/calories burned, goal date, and also has a thorough database of foods to choose from when entering what you’ve eaten. If it’s not there, you can create your own data for it and save it for future use.

In my case, I was allowed 1,637 calories–just slightly lower than my BMR. Calories are tallied up as you enter your food intake and the app determines how many calories you have left to consume to stay in your safe zone. And if you add activities, the appropriate number of calories is subtracted from your total. Can it get any simpler than that? I don’t think so!

And let me tell you: seeing intake in calories vs. Points is a real kick in the gut. 

On the Wii Fit front, I have chosen to run the Island Lap while holding 5 lb. dumbells in each hand. I started that last night and noticed a considerable difference while “jogging” as I sweated much more than usual. Also, I found a little hidden extra in the “jogging” portion of the game. If you follow the different colored dogs, you run at a swifter pace than following a standard Mii. I tried it and yes, it does seem much faster!

Finally, I had mentioned earlier a podcast I discovered so I thought I’d give it a mention. It’s called Fat 2 Fit and it’s pretty much a couple of guys talking weight loss on a human level. Nothing complicated; no degrees in anatomy required. You just listen to what they have to say about their progress, answer listener e-mail, get tips from others, and discover Web sites or other valuable information. (That’s how I found out about BMR!) It’s a good listen and I’d recommend it to anybody who wants to lose weight but doesn’t know where to start.

You can give the Fat 2 Fit podcast a listen here: button_itunes

I think that’s enough for today. If you don’t hear from me the rest of the week, I’ll see you here next Wednesday. Stay focused!

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