Second Quarter 2017 Goals

First quarter 2017 was a big success. I participated in my gym’s challenge and nailed it.  Even lost 4 pounds in the process, even though that wasn’t the point of the challenge.  It was going to the gym EVERY DAY for 66 DAYS.  I made 62 of the days.

Met lots of new people. Even joined a Facebook running group and have been running 2 times with them. Did lots of new classes. Hit my fitbit step, stair, calorie burn and active minute goals like no tomorrow!

Now for 2nd quarter 2017 goals:  Nutrition challenge!  I’m going to nail this one too. My eyes are on the 147 mark so I can be 25 on the BMI scale.  162.2 when I weighed in last Thursday on my 60th birthday.  This morning: 159.2.  Whoot! In a week.

Not an April Fools Day joke!

I was actually surprised how strong and fit I look. It is still in my head that I am heavy and out of shape.  When I look at this photo I am reminded how hard I have worked over the past 10 years to lose it and keep it off.

What did I do differently this past week? Not much, except to actually log everything I ate in MyFitnessPal.  So weird how it actually makes you lose weight when you log it.  Only thing I think I did differently so far was not eat a bunch of peanut butter with my granny smith apple at 3 pm each day.  And drank more water for sure. Crazy!!

Some of my strategy:  Each morning I follow a few key individuals who have set what I consider Big Hairy Audacious Goals (by getting and staying fit) and they help me to stay focused: David Garcia – an LA TV producer who runs up skyscrapers for fun, Sean Anderson – a radio personality in Oklahoma who focuses on taking care of himself (what a concept!), and  Lori Kimble a graphic designer in New York state turned soap business owner. All of them have lost significant amounts of weight and kept it off for years.  My 70 pound loss (with 50-60 pounds of it staying off since 2012) seems insignificant compared to them, but I am inspired by their strategies.

And that’s the who point of this blog is to keep my healthy diet motivation. I can’t give up, gotta keep working it.

Love listening to Sean’s podcast! It’s awesome.

I’ve been following Jason Fitzgerald’s strength running too and making a chart for staying injury free so I do my therapy moves first thing: right glute, right calf and left shoulder. Of course I work both sides, but I’m trying to not re injure myself.

My other 2nd quarter 2017 challenge: The Ultimate Fitness challenge as a partner for my running buddy. Lots to work on there. More later about this in another post.

Also. Made the commitment to run the half marathon for the Akron marathon! Whew. I’m running a 13:30 minute mile right now due to the weight I gained (5-10 pounds in the last 2 years) and want to get back down to keep my joints from hurting. And maybe I can get back to my 12:30 pace too!

Big year this 6.0!

 

 

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Status update: Exercise, Weight, Food and Sleep

Summer is almost here and it’s time to evaluate my status.

Why is logging exercise so much easier than logging food?

Exercise
I only went spinning once (May 4) in the last 6 weeks, but lately I’ve been back in the biking groove and have logged 99 miles in the last 2 weeks:
May 31 – 23 miles
June 2 – 5 miles
June 3 – 20 miles
June 5 – 6 miles
June 6 – 24.1 miles
June 9 – 20.5 miles

I’m training right now for the MS150 mile bike ride the beginning of August, so I’m biking a lot. My plan is to just keep running a little in order to keep that part going so I’m ready for training  for the Akron Relay as soon as I’m done with the MS ride.

My running/jogging/walking  in May:

  • May 2 – 2 miles
  • May 5 – 3.5
  • May 8- 2
  • May 9 – 2
  • May 13 -2
  • May 15 -2
  • May 19 – 2
  • May 21 – 4
  • May 22 – 3
  • May 27 – 1.4
  • Total for May 23.5

The 23.5 miles is not bad, for just maintaining a few miles. Most of the miles are super slow with the dogs. At around a 14 minute pace. More of a jog than a run! For June, I am going to go for another 25 miles total. Maybe a bit more than that. And hopefully at a 13 minute pace or a bit more.  Maybe run and THEN walk the dogs. Somehow I think I can run with the dogs, but they interfer with my shoulders and my left one has been hurting lately. That’s probably why! I fell skiing in Jan 2015 and it healed after about 2 months, but the past month it’s hurt. I bet that is why!

June (so far)

  • June 7 – 2.4 miles slow but with no dogs to blame my slowness on!

I’m not focusing on running right now because I’ll hit that hard in August. But I think I should probably plan on running 3 or so miles each time so that it won’t be a big adjustment when i start running 4 miles in August and then 6 a few times in September. I just want to maintain that I can run, not build the miles or the speed right now. If I get around 30 to 35 miles running in June, I’ll be very happy.

Weight
Meanwhile I have been hovering at the 159 and 160 lbs – back and forth on the scale. Not where I want to be, but it is better than it had been. Too much of this year has been well above 160. Especially when a year and a half ago I was hovering 149 and 150… That was before I got hurt and took 2 months off from the HIIT intense boot camp type workouts I was doing 3 days a week.

June 2015 to June 2016

I downloaded a new app on my phone that is a weight averaging app. If I had to eyeball the past year, I’d say my weight was more in the 158 average… but if I look at just March thru June, it’s definitely OVER 160. It’s weird how it creeps up so easy. I did really well weighing in almost every day.

What else is weird is that two of the 3 times in 2016 I got down to 156 were both from vacations! (Jan 12-19 and March 5-12.) I find it so much easier to keep the weight off when I’m not sitting at a desk! Not so much even the activity, but when I do stand up from the desk, I find I go to the kitchen! Perfect transition into food:

Food
I have been trying to do whole30 – at least not eating anything that came out of a package for the past 2 weeks (actually 16 days, but who is counting!) Been working on this the past 2-3 weeks and when I look at the chart, I think it is actually working.

I really like this pinto bean recipe that I have with tomatoes, celery, carrots, avocados. The dressing is lemon, olive oil and cider vinegar… so it’s good. The only ww point things are pinto beans and avocados. It is good for maintaining if I don’t eat too much of it.

Lots of egg white omlets with spinach and mushrooms with a whole egg dropped into the middle of the egg whites. No bread. Granny smith apples with Almond butter. Yum. best. snack. ever. When I go out to eat: salad with chicken, ranch on the side. I have had one beer and one glass of wine in the last 3 weeks. Tried to do a taco recipe but too much sodium or something. Mexican doesn’t work for me. Chicken in the crock pot. With veggies. Awesome. Roasted veggies. Always good. Mozzarella cheese – snuck it in there, probably should have skipped it.  Tuna over chopped veggies – A winner. Tuna over quinoa – Okay.

As far as tracking food. Boo. Really bad. Like D- or F.

Why do I find it so hard to track beyond lunch? Breakfast. Easy. Lunch and snack? a struggle but I write it down. But after 3 pm you’d think I never heard of the concept of tracking. Mental block.

Water
Not very good. I’m trying to not buy the favored waters because of the whole 30 and artificial flavoring. Plus the ones I like are 75 cents each. For water! And I like to drink 2 a day. What a bad thing with the plastic recycling too. SO I have stopped buying them and stopped drinking water like I should. Tap water doesn’t do it for me. And putting fruit in the tap water in the fridge? Well the last pitcher sat there for more than a month and the fruit got really really water logged. Not the right answer for me. Maybe I’ll just buy the artificial water this week and see how things go.

Sleep
Mediocre. Go to bed early enough, but still getting up way to early. Probably on 5 good hours and 2 or 3 toss and turn hours.

Maybe I’ll try going to be a little later to see if I sleep more soundly. It’s just my very best sleep is the first 5 hours.

Goals for this month:

  • Track all 5 elements: I’m great at tracking exercise and weight.
  • Exercise: Keep up the lots of miles on biking 2 or 3 times a week. Maintain with a run once or twice a week, short and slow miles.
  • Weight – drop a few pounds (2 would be great!) Today’s weight: 160.6
  • Water – drink it! come on, that’s the easiest goal to make the one you really slipped up this past month!
  • Food -Keep going on Whole30 but TRACK the food. Not just breakfast and lunch, but water and dinner.
  • Sleep – keep working on it. Less screens. Less caffeine. More meditation. More relaxation.

 

The New Normal – Up or Down?

Interestingly enough, the idea of normal really changes in my mind.

When I was losing weight, it was normal to be on the diet of a healthy lifestyle and being very careful of what I ate.

Being in maintenance is harder than being in the losing phase. Everyone knows that! (Except the people in the losing phase who feel like losing it is the hardest. ha ha!)

But as the months go by, I find a couple of pounds up becomes the new normal. And the “scream weight” amount goes higher.

This past year, I have not been lower than 153. And a couple of years ago 151 was my absolute highest.

I need to look back on my motivation posts like this one, which I think is one of my best, because it recaps my strategies and tools.

Today I did a really weird thing. Woke up early (4:50 am – also known as on time) and got into my exercise clothes. Drove over to the gym, but didn’t turn in. Drove home. So what is that about? What’s holding me back? Why am I feeling so reluctant?

I love going to do the workout. The music, the sweating, the instructor, the people. Why do I keep thinking it’s too hard. I’m too heavy to do this. I’m too old. I’ll get hurt. What’s going on with me?

I think what’s bugging me is my birthday next week.  The number 59 is in my head. Today it’s feeling too old to do the jumping around of the class. But there are people older than that in the class. And I’m never going to be younger than this again.

I promised myself I would go running later this morning after the sun comes up. Still 30 more minutes.

Gotta get my head in a better place. Losing a couple pounds is a great start.

Weightwatcher motivation from Oprah

Oprah call on weightwatchersJust listening to the Oprah call. I was skiing when it was broadcast live, but Weightwatchers members can listen to it here: https://www.weightwatchers.com/us/m/cms/living/oprah and since I wanted to listen on my phone, I had to type in the whole URL… no link on the app inside my phone (at least that I could find.)

It definitely bolstered my motivation.

I’ve been struggling with motivation since I got back from Florida. Not sure if it’s the extra work I have now (2 full pages of legal pad to do list!) or the cold weather (about 32 degrees each day) or the overcast grey January days in Ohio or sitting at the computer more trying to churn out the work… etc. but I’ve been struggling with motivation.

It was very motivational for me to get me to start really tracking again. That’s one of my major challenges.

So here are some of the nuggets I want to remember from listening to this call:

* It’s a slow process but quitting doesn’t get you there any faster.

* Oprah – “I counted out 10 chips and then I put the bag away.” Of all of her many achievements and awards she has achieved that fact that she considered this on MAJOR, well I found that this resonated with me.  I can so relate to not bringing chips into the house. But if someone does, I don’t touch them. I am still not to the point of counting out 10 and putting the bag away. Even after being on WW since 2007…

* Put yourself first… analogy with the oxygen mask on the plane. Fill yourself up to allow your self to give to other people. First thing in the morning she gets up with the dogs to let them out/in and then she sits in centered prayerful thought before stepping out into the day and getting on the treadmill.  I can really relate to doing the workout first thing in the morning. Yesterday I didn’t get to my work out until noon. Not the right approach for me. I gotta do it early, before 8:30!

* Trigger foods. Don’t keep in the house. “There goes my weeklies” Yep I can relate. To both trigger foods. And losing my weeklies… If I grab a trigger food right now, it’s plain Greek yogurt. And it’s happened 3 times. because I add honey and walnuts. and I go back again and again. I track the first one. fudge the 2nd one and ignore the 3rd one. bad. sugar buzz. Note to self. Don’t bring in the Greek yogurt anymore.

* “I don’t use my weeklies or fit points”I try not to count mine either. but then I eat something that just tastes good, or more for the 3 pm snack boredom or work stress. 3pm is my nemesis. I gotta figure out a new strategy to deal with it. and weekies/fit points eating isn’t working for 3 pm munchies.

15 by 12 15*”I’m not doing this to lose weight, but so I can feel more vibrant and alive. That’s why it is different than a diet. You get to work it however you want to work it. ”

I’m doing this now to lose weight. The 15 pounds that I gained last spring when I had my injury.  I lost 4 when I was in Florida but gained it back again with my cold weather de motivated self.  I think I gotta keep picturing carrying around that red kettle bell with me all the time. I know if I could put it down, I’d feel much lighter on my feet!

* Running up the steps, instead of stopping on the 13th step. You know what it feels like to be agile and live and free in the movement. The ability to move freely inside your body is one of the great gifts you can give yourself. Being flexible and able to move inside the body. Exercise is important. We have to find ways to move your body. – I totally get all this.

* To not be out of breath walking up the stairs because of lugging around so much extra weight. I had that same experience a few years ago noticing how I just zoomed up the stairs instead of trudging. I think I can get rid of that last 15 pound kettle bell I want to be feeling that light feeling again.

* 5 days a week aerobic a week. Stretch class. Yoga studio app. Think I’m going to try doing a 5 minute stretch routine as part of my get ready for bed routine.

* No longer having food as a priority. The obsession is done. Points take the “Should I cleanse? low carb. Paleo. Compulsive obsession.” out of it. Thinking differently about food. – I’m not here yet. I’m still wishy washy between 28 day, 30 whole, Paleo, vegan, zero point soup day, etc. I want to embrace the feel good thoughts when I’m feeling like munching and looking in the fridge for something yummy.

* “Give yourself credit for being strong.” “Accountable to the points.” “Strength x Strength = Power.” This is a key takeaway for me. Seems like congratulating yourself on the “little” things and not beating yourself up on the fall backs, will make me stronger and more successful. I’m going to try to not look at a fall back as a failure, but instead reframe it that I refuse to give up.

I was very inspired listening to the call. I think I’m going to go on Connect and make that part of my motivational routine. I hasn’t even looked at it.

My goal for this week will be to track. Track. Simply track. That seems so easy, but it is so hard for me.

Not the breakfast and lunch… but from 3 pm on, it’s hard! Maybe I should try starting my day at 3 pm. Someone suggested that at a meeting and it worked for them. 3 pm to 3 pm. That way if I ate a lot of points 3 pm to 9 pm… then I could do zero points 8 am to 3 pm the next day and stay on it. At least for those tough days.

All good things. And I’m going to reread this post at 3 pm to tighten my resolve. Instead of looking for pretzels with peanut butter. Or maybe eat those at 2:30 if I still have points left from my 30!

15 by 15

It’s official. I can’t pretend any more.

I’ve gained. And I have to (strike that) need to/want to go back on the Losing mode

15 by 12 15

I want to lose 15 pounds by Dec 15.

Today is Oct 25, So that’s 7 1/2 weeks. 2 pounds a week. Which is the WeightWatcher high realistic weekly goal. Tracking it here!

I was never able to do that when I was on WeightWatchers… but then again, I was on it for 5 years going to meetings faithfully and paying my $40 per month religiously. 60 x 40 wow 2400 bucks. I’m going to invest that in massages this time!

But I’ve decided I’m going to use the tools that I’ve gained (gathered!):
– Summer Sizzle and 28 day challenge
– tracking apps My Fitness Pal and map my run/strava
my secret tips that aren’t so secret!
– visualizing my progress
– working out and training for 2 (maybe 3) upcoming races
reviewing and reciting all the stuff my ww leader said to us

PLAN – each week. each day. exercise. food. rewards. strategies to not fall off @potlucks or @parties.
DO IT – Set out my clothes. Set the alarm. Get up and go. Show up and let the instructor do the rest.
TRACK – food, exercise, progress. If I track food in and calories expended, I’ll wake up and wonder how good the scale is looking today.

Already set up my booklet with a page a day.
First week in there with 2 pounds goal by Nov 1. I’m actually hoping to bank a little more than that because I know it’s easier at the beginning and harder the closer you get to the goal. Plus I’m running a halloween 5k on Saturday and i’d love to be carrying around less than my extra Red Kettlebell.

Resisting the Birthday Celebration Cheats

deck_bdayIt’s a beautiful day and I snuck out of work early to meet my friends for a quick birthday celebration. Out on the deck, my buddies are sitting around an umbrella shaded table heaped with birthday bags, colorful table mattes, paper plates and festive balloons and flowers. Birthday cards with funny covers and silly sayings get passed around the table.

Center of attention are the appetizers. So lovely. Obviously hours of work went into their preparation. The food looked  beautiful and appealing. Like out of a magazine.

Then the giant birthday cake… made from scratch.

And a wide choice of wine, beer and other alcoholic beverages served in fun glasses.

How to resist. Ugh. Not only am I hungry (it’s 4:30 pm) but we  (my husband & his/my other friends)  are going bike riding at 6:30, (meaning I need to leave the party by 5:30, to get home, eat, changed and leave in time to get to the parking lot where we will meet.)

So I didn’t drink. That part wasn’t hard. Thank goodness I don’t have much of  a problem with resisting the alcohol or I don’t know what I’d do to try to lose/keep off the weight!!

And I was able to resist the food. They know me pretty well by now. It’ll be 3 years in 60 days from now.

None the less, I get all this:

  • You’re missing out
  • just this once
  • c’mon try some
  • aren’t you going to have any?
  • You are so good

Maybe they didn’t say all of these, but I heard them. The ones they didn’t say,  I heard in my head.

I left after an hour. I was there, but I didn’t feel like I really connected.  Food definitely makes you connect.  Drinking my water while they had beer/wine/etc. felt like deprivation.

This is the 4th celebration this month.  The others were at Panera, our usual coffee hang out… where I can grab a coffee black and not feel as out of place.

You might wonder, why not just have a taste?!  I can’t. Especially when I’m hungry. I want to eat, not nibble.

Sometimes they serve fruit, but there is sugar on it.

Part of it was my clothes. I was in work clothes, coming straight from the office, not the party style.  Part of it was who I sat by, there is one other who is “really good” and usually just drinks water. But she seems not tempted by the treats and there isn’t the usual cajoling to get her to sample the beginning of what I consider the “slippery slope.”   And my head was still in the work projects that I left unfinished.

Next time I need to bring something. But I don’t want to take all the time to prep something when I have to take it to work and then take it to the party. And it would be “healthy” ie not eaten.

Once I got home, heated up my chicken breast, added the veggies and wolfed it down in 3 minutes… hurrying to change clothes, load up my bike, water bottle, cleats, helmet, bike pack etc and hop into the truck to head to the trail. Very  glad I resisted.

The food was just right in my belly.

At 9 pm at the restaurant, after the 22 miles ride, I ordered a spinach salad with dressing on the side.  Tomatoes, eggs, cucumber and a bit of cheese.  YUM!

Woke up to a happy scale on Friday morning!!!

If I didn’t have bike riding on the agenda, I wouldn’t have resisted. At least one… maybe even 2 glasses of wine. And then I can’t resist the food.

I hope they keep inviting me to the party. I hope I don’t make them feel bad by not eating or drinking.  I hope I can keep it up.  When I secumb, I end up trying to get the weight back off for months. (Right now I’m still fighting down a few pounds from the prior weekend potluck.)

Keep the focus. Good nutritious food in the right quantity.  Exercise that doesn’t hurt, but brings out the endorphins.  Restful sleep where I wake up rarring to go!

PS – the 22 miles was strenuous enough I had endorphins floating around until around midnight.  First time I felt my bike ride had been hard enough to feel like a workout.

Going out this morning for another one!!

Steps to Maintaining. So Simple. So Hard.

This PPT webinar talk about how values lead to thought patterns which lead to actions and actions lead to outcomes inspired me to figure out why I’ve been struggling for the months since I hit goal (149 pounds in July 2012) to not gain back  the weight on and off over the past 35 months.

I’m up 10% to 155.3 or 63 pounds lost, 6.3 gained.  I did get all the way down to 143 for a minute, but 147 to 149 is where I want to maintain.

So I spent a few minutes this morning analyzing what I do to keep if off and trying to figure out where my weakness is.

This statement is a “duh” obvious one, but is the fact of the matter:

Keeping weight off is a combination of eating healthy, exercise and enough sleep.

Each element is hard in it’s own way with internal struggles and external struggles. But just setting up some plain old habits and routines for keeping the actions and doing the actions without interruption will keep the end result.

1) Eating Healthy Actions:

  • meal planning
  • shopping
  • meal preparation
  • prep snacks, lunches and pre dinners
  • doing dishes
  • putting away

Positives:
Feeling good, not feeling cravings. Not making a decision each time I eat.

Hard Part about Eating Healthy

  • going out with friends
  • attending a party/BBQ
  • restaurants
  • treats
  • 3 oclock duldrooms/bored at work

2) Doing Exercise Actions:

  • getting up earlier
  • putting on exercise clothes
  • go to gym
  • take a shower

Positives

My friends at gym. Endorphin hormones on the drive home. I actually really like to exercise.  Bike riding with friends is awesome. Hiking is good. Walking the dogs is good (except for the dog hair in my car.)

Hard Part about Exercising

  • Injuries have limited my habits (do my hip exercises every morning right away!)
  • Embarrassed that I can’t do what I used to do
  • Easier to hide at home

3) Getting Enough Sleep Actions:

  • Limit caffeine
  • Go to bed before 10
  • Evening routine
  • Melatonin

Positives: When I get enough sleep, everything in life is easier and happier. Definitely affects my mood.

Hard Part about Getting Enough Sleep

  • Watching TV at night
  • Not going to bed, but falling asleep on the couch
  • Netflixs
  • The “doing one more thing” syndrome
  • Waking up in the middle of the night 3 am ish and not being able to fall asleep again
  • Naps (are they good or bad?… they feel to good to be bad!)

Next post should be, what I’m going to do about the hard parts to make them easier, right? Anyone have any good suggestions for me?