Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Frustration...

I'm frustrated. I had my measurements taken today at the gym and although I lost inches and some weight, I am still frustrated that I'm not losing weight at the pace I feel I should be. Just so you know, six pounds in about six weeks. And actually, if you look at the past year that I've been in this program, I have actually gained weight... So I guess here's the scoop of what I've done in the past year...

Weight: +5 lbs
Neck: -2 in
Upper Arm: -4.75 in
Forearm: -1.5 in
Chest: -2 in (This is an estimate because Laura measured me in a different spot than Scott and Matt.)
Waist: -7 in (The spot was slightly different between trainers, but probably pretty accurate.)
Hip: -7 in
Thigh: -6 in
Calf: -4.5 in

Based on their computer program, I've lost about 1/3 of my % Body Fat.

I understand the more muscle you have the more calories you can burn...but it's still frustrating, especially when I've read that you should be losing up to 10% of your body weight per week and I've had a doctor tell me he'd be extremely happy if I lost five pounds a week. ::sigh::

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

The We Factor...

I read an article a couple months ago from a lady who lost a lot of weight. She said the best thing she ever did was get a trainer because when she didn't believe in herself her trainer did. I definitely have to agree with her on this one. There have been many times in which I have wanted to give up and probably would have if I didn't have those Monday appointments with my trainer. I have been to the gym for nine days straight - the most in a long, long time. I'll be there tomorrow as well, since I'm meeting with Matt again.

As I mentioned in a previous post, Matt has said what "we" will do...as a team. "We will walk...we will jog...we will run." Today, at the very end of my strenuous lower body workout, we jogged. Or should I say, I jogged, he walked fast. :) I have decided if he's going to give his everything to this team, then I must do so as well. I feel Matt has really understood me from day one when I told him I did not know how to push myself. I have never failed at anything because I have never challenged myself. Even with school, the one thing I was always good at, I took classes I knew I could do well in. Those classes that became too hard, I'd withdraw from before the grade would count. I need to not be afraid to challenge myself. Yes, it may hurt at first, but it will get easier.

My old trainer was highlighted on our gym's website recently. There is a section that they fill out called "favorite client success story." As cheesey as this may sound...I want to be Matt's. This has been one of my secret goals. Some day I hope to have these goals be for and about me, but right this moment I'm scared to take the blame if I fail.

Fear. I fear change. I know how the world views me now, and I have grown to accept those views. After all, that has been my reality since I was eight (will tell this story soon). I don't necessarily fear my body changing, but rather the world's perceptions of me. How will people view the new me? Will they still love and accept me? Will my soul, heart, and desires change with my body? All these questions, yet not many answers. The answers will only come with time and as I actually change.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Update: My 4 Mile Marathon

So I hit the gym today and did the four miles in 58:52! :) And that was not sprinting to the finish line either!

I also looked in two sports stores for weightlifting gloves that would actually fit my hands, and none of them really did the trick. Ick...the search will continue.

Socializing...

I love to socialize, especially when it means going out. I love meeting new people, it's interesting to learn about who they are, where they've been, and so forth. There are many strangers that I have met who have impacted my life in some small way, usually for the good, sometimes the not-so-good.

When I was in graduate school, I worked for Hewitts Garden Center for maybe about six months to earn some extra cash. I was cashing out this cute elderly lady, when our hands brushed one another while exchanging money. At that exact moment, without even thinking, she said something along the lines, "You need some hand moisturizer, you have hard man hands. A girl as young as you should not have hands like that."

Now that I have been lifting heavier weights, I feel like my man hands have come back. Luckily for me, after I hit the gym today, I can go buy gloves. :) I set the goal last week that if I went to the gym every day this past week, that would be my reward. Today marks the one week mark!

Anyway, back to the topic at hand. If you look at this past month, pretty much every social event that I have gone to has involved food or alcoholic beverages in some way or form. I'm still trying to figure out the do's and don't's to eating out, and I have to figure this one out pretty soon due to some upcoming trips and events. The easiest thing would be to go hide under a rock, but let's face it, I find social situations even when I'm not looking. I have to find a reasonable solution...

So my next goal is to maintain a 1,500 calorie diet (this week was more around 2,000) and workout every day this week (with at least two days of double gym time). I have not decided what my award would be yet...hmmmm...

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Yesterday

Yesterday was a bad day for food consumption, although I still burned more calories than I took in. I did not have anything home-cooked and today I feel like crap. My body hurts and my digestive system is killing me. So what did I eat?

Protein Bar
Rudy's BBQ leftovers
Little Caeser's Pepperoni Pizza Slices
Peach
Trudy's Chips/Salsa/Burrito

I had every intention of bringing half of the burrito home, but it was so yummy. At least I made the decision not to drink at happy hour yesterday and I stuck to that!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

H2O Consumption

On Monday, Matt and I were chatting and we got on the topic of water consumption. He's always making me drink the stuff while training. Anyway, I told him I found a perfect method on how to get my water intake up and that was through water containers that had straws since I have a really bad oral fixation problem. So on Wednesday, he saw me with my water bottle with a straw, and he makes the wise-crack, "Enjoying your sippy cup." :) Matt, Matt, Matt...

I meant to ask Matt on Wednesday why it was so important to consume so much water while trying to lose weight and would flavoring water with Crystal Light do, but I forgot to. Ironically, I found an article that day about the issue:
Our body requires a certain amount (of water) to maintain our blood osmotic levels, provide the medium for circulating and excreting waste products, and cleansing the interstitial tissues... This (drinking water) is actually in order to help with the removal of the ketons, an acidic particle residue produced when converting fat into sugar in the body for energy metabolism, from the body... (Dr. Mao's Secrets of Longevity)

Okay, straight water for me, but I'm not giving up my coffee in the morning!

My 4 Mile Marathon

On Tuesday I was disappointed that I did not do 4 miles in 60:00 minutes on the elliptical, rather it was 60:12. I was determined that I was going to make it today. The last minute was a complete sprint to the finish line, but I got to the 4 mile marker at 59:55. I can only improve, right?

I have been to the gym every day since Monday. Tomorrow will be the challenge, I need to go before work because I'm going to happy hour after work. It's going to be an early, early, early morning! Cross your fingers that I make it! If I go for the full week, I'm going to schedule a hair appointment before I go visit my sister.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

The Perfectionist In Me

I sometimes do not get involved in physical activities, especially team sports, because I don't feel qualified to participate. I feel like the team is losing because of me, and in a culture where there is a high stress on winning, this is a huge burden to take time and time again. Even if I go hiking with a friend, I feel like I'm holding him/her back from going farther or faster (even if they do not care or notice). So for the past many years, I have stayed away from physical activities that involved other people, and focused on solitary things, such as walking on the treadmill/track and using the elliptical/treadclimber; I am comfortable with these things, and it's easier for me to challenge myself.

Yesterday, I was reading an article called the 9 Dieting Paradoxes that Make Perfect Sense - Part 1 that hits on the above topic:

"The pursuit of perfection comes with an ugly flip side: a fear of failure, or fear of making a mistake. This fear keeps a lot of people from trying something different or learning a new skill. They'd rather not try than go through the anguish of not doing it perfectly. The perfectionist likes to stick with things she knows that she can do."

Hmmmm...maybe I need to start stepping out of my comfort zone? But how?

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Funny Story #1

Yesterday I was working with my trainer and we were doing alternating front lunges. I am not a huge fan of them because...well...I'll be honest, I'm always sore the next day from them. Whenever I do anything balancing-related, Matt seems to get a little nervous because I don't have any balance. On my last lunge, my foot did not make it back to it's starting point and I fell on my butt nearly wiping out a runner on the track. :) As I joked around with Matt, there goes all that trust he earned! LOL :) Nah...I know he's still got my back.

Trust has always been an issue of mine because I always like to be in control. It reminds me of the activity we used to do in grade school, where you would fall back and wait for your friend to catch you. OR there was the blindfold game where you would be led by a friend or an acquaintance around the school and they would direct you if you were going to walk into something. Obviously I don't have everything under control because of how big I have gotten. Hmmm...something to think about further. Will post further about my "control" issues...

Monday, July 09, 2007

What I have learned...

...from my trainers.

Trainer 1 (Laura): Trainers are people too, and you shouldn't be afraid of them. They know what they are doing, and if you apply yourself, you will see results.

Trainer 2 (Scott): Scott was right. (Hopefully he'll never read this because he'll never let me live this one down.) Physically you can do anything you put your mind to. You have to be just as mentally tough as you are physically. One of my biggest challenges is to overcome my negative mindset. Yes...surprising...I can be pretty negative when I don't see the results I hope for as fast as I wish to see them.

Trainer 3 (Matt): Teamwork and trust. On one of our walking laps, he used one word that taught me teamwork and trust: WE. It was not just about me, it was about what WE could and would do. It was actually at this point I realized I lost my extended support system when I moved to Texas and that is what I am trying to rebuild at this point in my life. I have been so afraid to let people into my inner world that I have pushed so many potentially close friends away. This perception is changing...big time.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Most Recent Photograph

Well, here I am. This photograph was taken on Easter Weekend this year (2007). Honestly, it's disappointing that my weight has not changed that much this past year, but I can see the differences when I compare my photographs. Looks like it is time for me to hit the gym today.

Team Healthy Lifestyle

I figured it's always more fun to do things with friends and family, so I want to create a Team atmosphere via the web since many of my close friends and family members live thousands of miles away. At first I was going to name the team after me, but I don't want this to be solely about me. All of us can improve our health one way or another, whether it is through diet, exercise, or both. So for right now, I'm calling it Team Healthy Lifestyle, but this can be negotiated. Besides, as the famous saying goes, "There is no I in TEAM."

The idea is to rally behind one another as we seek the optimal level of health for ourselves. We're all going to be at different starting points and will have a variety of goals (and some of these goals may be just maintaining your current weight, or increasing muscle mass, etc). As I need encouragement every now and then, I too want to support you and your healthy lifestyle choices.

Add a comment if you want to enlist in Team Healthy Lifestyle. Depending on the number of people interested, I will look into posting some type of forum or discussion board that Team members can regularly participate in. If anybody already uses any that they like, please let me know.

Documenting My Weight Loss

I am going to get over my fear of posting full body photographs and just lay it out there. I truly want people to experience this journey with me... The photograph on the left is me in May 2005 visiting my sister in Phoeniz, AZ. The photograph on the right is me in February 2006 while visiting my sister in Miami, FL. I think these two photos really illustrate the changes I went through that first year because I chose to wear the same outfit. Still more to lose!

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Heidi Hype

My cousin Heidi has been an inspiration to me. Not only has she lost over 100 pounds, but she is trying to motivate and educate people across the nation through Heidi Hype. I got to see her when I went to DC in April for work; she looked amazing and was so happy. It was good to catch up with her. We both were in near tears as we talked about our battles to lose weight in a TGI Fridays.

Due to her weight loss success and inspring story, her application to do Extreme Makeover was accepted. Her episode will air tomorrow, July 9th on ABC at 9pm Eastern Time. I am extremely proud of her accomplishment.

In the end...it can be done. People can lose weight if they choose to. I can lose weight if I choose to. This blog and all of y'all are my accountability factors and support. That is the one thing I lost when I moved to Texas is my support system, so I'm looking to build that back up. Thank you for reading and participating!

Resurrecting My Blog

So it literally has been forever since I have posted anything on this blog. A lot has happened in a couple of years...

For starters, I no longer live in Michigan. I have moved my way south to the great state of Texas. It has been an absolutely HUGE transistion. My new work environment has not been as supportive in my weight loss efforts. I'm not really talking about my co-workers, but rather the actual physical environment. For instance, the onsite gym doesn't have any showers, so why would I really want to use it if I have meetings in the afternoon? The gym that I belong to is a few miles from work and takes about 15 minutes to get to, so it's impractical to do lunch workouts like I did in Michigan. AND, my car does not have A/C, so it is brutal to do a lot of driving in the hot Texas summers.

BUT...there are things I have been doing. One month after I moved, I got a trainer. I was meeting with my trainer once a week, bumped it up to 6 times a month, and now twice a week. My weight has not changed all that much, but I have lost a lot of inches. In one year, I have lost 25% of my body fat. During all of this, I have had some interesting stories, so I will share these along the way.

Well...that is it for now. I will provide a more detailed assessment of my weight loss in the very near future.