Weigh-In Wednesday: Week 9

I’ve been struggling a lot in the last week, dealing with a lot of anxiety and trying to push through that to stay on target with my goals. For the most part I did a decent job of following my eating plan, although there were definitely some “screw it” days in there too.

Being consistent (not perfect) is paying off though, because today I was down to 153.7lbs – I’m down 4.5lbs and very pleased with that!

I think that I’m still working through the transitions of a lifestyle change that losing weight and maintaining weight loss will require. I still fall into old habits from time to time, like wanting to go eat Mexican food on a deck at the first sign of sunny weather. Sticking to my meal and workout plans when I’m not feeling motivated is still my biggest struggle, but I do think I’m getting better at it and I’m hopeful that I can continue to improve on it.

Weigh-In Wednesday: Week 8

It’s officially summer! There is decidedly warmer weather in the forecast and I’m excited to be able to spend more time outside after an unseasonably cool and rainy spring.

I had a string of days over the last week where I went pretty far over my calories, and it definitely showed in today’s weigh-in. Today I’m at 155lb; up 0.8lb from last week. Of course I could wish for better, but I know I was a little off the rails so I’m actually relieved that I didn’t gain more. But the last few days have been better and hopefully I can keep making healthy decisions!

I’ve been paying more attention to portions lately and trying to weigh food more and make a point of eating smaller amounts. It’s pretty hard, because I’m having to get used to feeling hungry, but I know my calorie intake is still at a reasonable range and I’d rather focus on portion sizes than eliminate categories of food. Hopefully it’ll start paying off!

Weigh-In Wednesday: Week 7

Bill and I are home after spending a week in Arizona, and it’s good to be back! We really enjoyed our trip. My mom is recovering amazingly well from her heart attack and we were able to spend time visiting with her and my dad, as well as helping them prepare for their upcoming move to California. Now that their house is sold, they can focus their efforts on finding a great new place in SoCal!

I wasn’t sure how my weigh-in was going to go after taking two weeks off from the gym (one week of quarantining, followed by a week in Arizona). I had initially planned on working out each morning at the hotel gym, only to find once we arrived that the “gym” actually consisted of one treadmill, an elliptical machine, and a water fountain. I had brought along light weights and kept up with the Tunde Arm Challenge in our room, but other than that I didn’t work out at all.

I may not have been exercising, but I took extra care to count calories and stick to my daily goal. Clearly it was what I needed to do, because I weighed in today at 154.2 – four pounds down from when I began seven weeks ago! Of course I wish I were dropping weight more quickly, but realistically I didn’t do a great job of staying consistent with my nutrition in May and I know that hindered my progress.

So far I’m doing a great job of sticking to my June goals. I’m still doing the Tunde Arm Challenge consistently, my daily calories are at an average of 1,468 per day, and I’ve averaged 9,155 steps per day. And though I did try to make healthy choices last week, having oatmeal for breakfast and sticking to my usual lunch of an apple with peanut butter and a protein shake, I also had things like pizza, fast food tacos, and ice cream. For me, what seems to matter the most is being consistent with my calorie budget, no matter what foods I choose to “spend” that budget on. And although cravings may never leave me, thankfully they have gotten less severe!

Overall I’m really pleased with my progress over the last two weeks. Hopefully by next week I’ll reach the milestone of five pounds down!

Weigh-In Wednesday: Week 5 (and Goals for June)

I can’t believe it’s already June! I’m so excited to have the fresh start of a new month and to get back on track with weight loss. I also tested negative for Covid again this morning which makes me VERY happy and relieved.

I knew my weigh-in today wasn’t going to be great after all the stress eating I’ve been doing. I stepped on the scale and there were no surprises: I weighed in at 157.2, which is a gain from last week but still a pound down from where I was five weeks ago when I started this series. So, with all things considered I’m going to take that as a win, put May behind me, and just focus on improving myself in June. My plan is to keep up the good habits I established in May, and build on them with more healthy changes.

Average of 1,550 calories per day. I’m giving myself a little bump in the amount of average calories this month in hopes that I’ll actually achieve it. Nutrition remains my biggest hurdle so this is my biggest area to focus on in June.

Average 9,000 steps per day. I hit this number in May so I’m increasing my step goal for June.

Hold a one-minute plank every day. Hopefully I’ll be better about remembering to do this in June!

Continue the Tunde Arm Challenge. I’m beginning Week 8 of the challenge and while it’s definitely not getting any easier, I feel like my arms are starting to look more toned!

Recapping my May Goals

Today I should have been flying to Arizona to visit my mom and dad, but instead I found out yesterday that I was exposed to Covid and have had to delay the trip. I’m beyond heartbroken and I alternated between sobbing hysterically and pulling myself together long enough to change flight and hotel reservations. By the time everything was handled, I didn’t have any willpower left and I sought comfort in some cheeseburgers from McDonald’s and a wedge of grocery store cake while I watched tv that I’ve seen many times before.

Even though I’m being cautious and not taking a risk by traveling now, I seriously doubt I’ll end up getting sick. The exposure happened on Friday night, and the majority of the time I spent with the friend who unknowingly exposed me was outdoors. Still, it’s for the best to wait it out.

I’ve rebooked the trip for next week, and am committed to quarantining until Bill and I leave for the airport. That means we aren’t going anywhere, including the gym. Thankfully we got used to working out at home in 2020 when Covid first hit, so I’ll be able to keep up with my exercise.

May didn’t go at all how I planned and I’m ending the month averaging 1,680 calories per day. I’m disappointed in myself for that, but I did much better with my exercise goals. I’ve completed Week 7 of the Tunde Arm Challenge and will launch into Week 8 in June, and I averaged 9,786 steps per day. The daily plank has been going a bit better since I moved the reminder notification to 9am.

June is going to come with its own challenges, like being away from my beloved gym classes for two whole weeks, but I’m going to set some new monthly goals and work hard to achieve them.

Weigh-In Wednesday – Week 4

There wasn’t much change on the scale this week – I weighed in at 156.5 which is up 0.2lb from last week. But, I’m giving myself some grace because it was a HARD week and I’ve been feeling incredibly anxious and emotional since my mom’s heart attack on Sunday. I also spent the weekend in Portland with Bill and my friend Jamie, so I was eating more than normal even before Mom got sick.

Right now, my calories per day are at an average of 1,621. There’s still a potential for me to get that number below 1,600 for the month if I really pay attention to my eating over the next week. And, now that my mom has had a heart attack, I’m even more motivated to adopt a heart-healthy diet and get my weight to a more reasonable number. Yes, my reasons for wanting to lose weight are partially rooted in vanity. But I also want to be healthy and live a long life. I’m in my thirties now and I need to establish a healthy lifestyle NOW to support myself as I get older.

I still haven’t figured out the perfect formula for remembering to do my daily plank, so that is definitely something I need to work on. But I am still ahead of my step goal, and I’ve kept my gym and Tunde Arm Challenge goals!

Next week I’m heading to Arizona to visit my parents, but I booked a hotel that does have a gym and my plan is to wake up each morning and work out first thing. I can still accomplish my goal of going to the gym at least five times per week, it’ll just be a different gym than I had in mind when I set the goal.

May definitely didn’t go the way I planned, but I’m determined to finish strong.

Health Scare

On Sunday, my phone rang at around 5:15am. It woke me up; I was in Portland for the weekend with Bill and my good friend Jamie and didn’t need to be up until around 7:30 to start packing to head home. As I rushed to answer, my not-yet-awake brain was slowly processing that what I was hearing was my ringtone and not my alarm and that it was too early in the morning for anyone to be calling me with anything but bad news. The Caller ID display showed it was a call from my dad and briefly I hoped that he was simply up early (as he often is) and had somehow dialed my number by accident as he walked the dog. But as soon as I answered, he was there on the line, telling me first that everyone was okay but then going on to share that my mom had suffered a heart attack.

When I think of the things that I might have worried about happening to my mom, a heart attack wasn’t really on it. She’s in her seventies and up until now has never experienced any sort of issues with her heart. My grandfather and uncle both had heart problems, so it isn’t completely shocking – but they both experienced those problems when they were much younger so I always figured Mom had dodged any potential genetic bullets.

Having a parent in the hospital when you’re far away from them is incredibly stressful, or at least it is for me. As I am not a heart surgeon and quite frankly get a little squicked out by just being in a hospital, I don’t entertain any sort of fantasies that my being there would help her recovery in any way, but it’s still hard knowing that she’s going through something pretty traumatic for her and that there’s nothing I can do to comfort her or make things better. As someone who likes to plan and problem-solve, feeling helpless is extremely difficult for me.

Heart attacks sound very scary, but in reality medical advances have made them a lot less so and heart attack survivors can recover very quickly. As long as there are no unexpected setbacks, Mom should be able to go home from the hospital by the end of the week, and with some time to rest she’ll be as good as new. She’ll have to make some diet and lifestyle changes, but it seems like there’s also the possibility that she’ll ultimately feel better than she has in a long time.

Heart attacks present differently in women than they do in men and I feel like that’s as widely known as it should be. It’s important to know the common symptoms:

1. Uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain in the center of your chest. It lasts more than a few minutes, or goes away and comes back.

2. Pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.

3. Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort.

4. Other signs such as breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness, or heartburn.

5. As with men, women’s most common heart attack symptom is chest pain or discomfort. But women are somewhat more likely than men to experience some of the other common symptoms, particularly shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting and back or jaw pain.

I trust that my mom is getting the best care possible and I’m excited for her to be able to go home from the hospital to get back to living her life.

Reflecting

I felt too discouraged yesterday to write my Weigh-In Wednesday post. I ate absolutely terribly for most of the last week and that reflected on the scale, which as of yesterday was at 156.2 – a 1.7lb gain from last week. I was super bummed about that and just wasn’t ready to find a positive outlook about it until today.

This morning, I regrouped. I reminded myself that I’m doing great with most of my May goals – I can still get my average calories down below 1,600 again by the end of the month if I get back on track, and I’m on pace with my Tunde arms challenge, my goal for going to the gym five days a week and my step goal. I do keep forgetting my plank! I changed the reminder from 11am to 2:30pm which has helped a bit, but I need to do the plank as soon as the notification reminds me and not put it off.

All that to say, I’m not doing as poorly as I thought and even though I really did struggle yesterday with feeling like a failure, I haven’t failed at all! I think that the part of this I temporarily lost sight of is that I am aiming for far more than achieving the monthly goals I set for myself. I am making lifestyle changes, ones that need to stick forever. I was flipping through ‘The Skinny Rules’ by Bob Harper and something he wrote stood out to me so much that I actually created a note with the quote and saved it in my phone.

You’ve got to make a break. You’ve got to divorce yourself from the past and find a different way of living. And you can never go back.”

My body is the way that it is because of the way I’ve been living. I think I was trying to shoehorn changes into my life without altering my lifestyle, and it’s simply not working. I don’t know why I thought it was better to continue putting myself in situations where I’m practically conditioned to indulge in too many calories (like dinner at a Mexican restaurant where I always have too much food and margaritas), rather than finding new things to do so I wouldn’t tempt myself. But I realize now that it was never going to work, that I couldn’t expect myself to follow the same patterns but suddenly and swiftly make different choices. I know now that if I want to feel better and make improvements to my life, I have to step out of the patterns I’ve developed for myself.

I feel like I have hope again. Making a lifestyle change is hard and scary, but I also truly believe I’m going to be so much happier and healthier for doing it!

Weigh-In Wednesday: Week 3

After setting tangible goals for myself, I had a much better week! So far in May I’ve averaged 1,550 calories per day, which I’m pretty happy with considering that my eating habits are my biggest struggle. I’ve averaged 11,900 steps per day which is way over my goal, and except for Sunday when I totally forgot I’ve done my daily planks.

Even with that progress, I’ve been enjoying plenty of splurges – a delicious Cinco de Mayo dinner that Bill made, and some fun meals out. I know that the trick to being successful is moderation, not cutting things out altogether, and so far it’s working for me.

Exercise-wise, I’m in a good mindset and I’m happy with my routine. Since I decided to skip the gym last night to go out for dinner with Bill (the weather was gloriously sunny and we decided we wanted to have dinner outside on a deck), I did an at-home strength training class today to make up for it. I got new cycling shoes so I’m excited for the spin class that I signed up to take tomorrow night.

All of the good things I’m doing for myself definitely showed up on the scale this morning:

This morning I weighed in at 154.5, which is down 2.3lbs from last week and 3.7lbs overall. I feel great about my progress and it’s motivating me to keep working hard!

Weigh-In Wednesday: Week 2

As I mentioned in my May goals post, I didn’t have a stellar first week for weight loss. Setting tangible goals seems to have helped though: the last few days have gone much better!

I weighed in this morning at 156.8lbs, down 1.4lbs from my initial weigh-in when we returned from vacation. I’m pretty happy with that considering that I wasn’t terribly consistent up until a few days ago. Hopefully I’m on my way to finding a rhythm that will work for me!