353. Weight Watchers Wednesday: PointsPlus 2012 Week 12

I know I said I’d tell you all about my homemade bagel recipe, but I forgot about a continuing education seminar I had to attend yesterday which totally threw my whole day off.  So you can hear about my bagel making adventures tomorrow instead.  On to the weigh in…

Last week’s weight: 150.6lbs
This week’s weight: 152.8.lbs
Change: +2.2lbs
Total Loss: -14.2lbs

Honestly, I don’t have much to say about this week.  I had a really great week, and I was even thinking I might be down under 150.    Then my girly parts kickied into gear, and I actually felt myself getting more and more bloated yesterday.  Ultimately, I knew going into weigh in I would be up.  However, I’m also confident I’ll be right back down next week.  I briefly considered not weighing in last night, but I firmly believe in “keeping myself honest” and weighing in every week.  In retrospect, however, I kind of wished I’d skipped it.  I’m not upset about the gain because I was expecting it.  I am however a little annoyed with ending such an awesome month (more on that tomorrow too) on such a bummer note.

I’m just going to keep doing what I’ve been doing, and I’m sure next week will be right back down to where I was.

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350. Weight Watchers Wednesday: PointsPlus 2012 Week 11

Last week’s weight: 152.8lbs
This week’s weight: 150.6.lbs
Change: –2.2lbs
Total Loss: -14.2lbs

Reflections

I was in a really awful mood most of last week.  I wasn’t sleeping well.  I had no energy.  I blew off most of my runs.  I was not a happy camper.  On top of all that I had a bad weigh in last week (as evidenced by the above previous weight) that, honestly, I just wasn’t in the mood to blog about.  I discussed the weigh in with Laura, and I was fairly certain it was a direct result of allowing myself to become really dehydrated over the weekend.  However, discussing it was Laura was about as much talking about it as I wanted to do; plus, any blog I would have posted last week would have been miserable whining.   I usually subscribe to the something is better than nothing philosophy, but last week nothing was definitely the better choice.

Moving right along, weigh in this week confirmed that last week really was a result of being dehydrated over the weekend.  I lost the 1.4lb gain from last week as well as another .8lbs.  I’ve also officially hit the 150lbs mark.  I was absolutely over the moon last night when I saw 150 pop up on the scale.

When I first started my quest to lose weight back in 2009, 150lbs was my goal.  It was (and still is.  I certainly haven’t gotten any taller in the last, oh, 15 years…) a bit above the healthy BMI range, but it was the weight I remember being around the time I started college.  It seemed like a nice round number, and as good a goal as any.  I knew I ultimately wanted to get into the healthy BMI range, but 150lbs was close enough as an initial long term goal.

In addition to being my very first weight loss goal, it’s also been my next “milestone” goal for the last few months.  150lbs just felt so elusive.  I’d get close to it without ever quite reaching it.  It was starting to seem like the wall I would never get passed to reach my goal weight.  I know I’m not actually passed it yet, but just getting to it feels like such a huge victory.

One of the things we do at my meetings is when people reach milestones, the leader asks what’s been working for them to help them reach their goals.  It can be really helpful, and since I’ve actually changed things up quite a bit this month, I figured I’d go ahead and share what’s working for me.

First and foremost, veggies.  I’ve been maxing on the vegetables this month.  I recently got a Costco membership, and I’ve started buying my produce there.  It’s much cheaper than buying it at Jewel or even Target, but of course, it’s only a money saver if you’re eating all the produce and not throwing it away.  So since I’ve been buying my produce in bulk, I’ve been eating it in bulk.  I managed to eat something like 3 pounds of Brussels sprouts over a two week period.  I’ve been eating garbage salads for lunch nearly every day at work.  I’ve even been getting 2 – 4 servings of veggies at breakfast lately.  I’ll actually be sharing that “recipe” tomorrow so check back!  (Funny story: For the last two or three weeks I’ve actually been miscounting my servings of fruits and veggies.  I had it in my head that two cups of leafy greens was a serving when really it’s only one cup!  I’ve only been giving myself half credit on those daily salads!)

The other thing that seems to be making a big difference is my increased activity.  Since starting marathon training, I’ve been earning crazy numbers of activity points per week (We’re talking 40 points minimum, but this week I’ll earn 86 if I complete all my scheduled workouts.)  I actually increased my February goal of 150 points to 175, and I’m still going to blow that out of the water.  Now, I’m definitely not suggesting everyone go out and try to earn 80 activity points each week, but a small increase in activity definitely helps.  The other important part of this is I’ve really been focusing on balancing my increased activity and increased appetite.  Marathon training actually isn’t ideal for weight loss since (from what I’ve heard) you’re pretty much hungry all the time and you need to be properly fueling yourself to tackle ridiculously high mileage every week.  I think I mentioned previously that my goal is to eat a minimum of half my activity points.  Most weeks I eat all of my activity points and about half of my weekly points.  So far it seems to be a winning strategy.  We’ll see how it holds up.

So for now, my plan is to just keep doing what I’m doing.  My only goal is to make sure I’m really paying attention to my water intake on the weekends.  It’s always more of a challenge when I’m not sitting at my desk with a water bottle in front of my and a never ending supply of cold, filtered water about 15 feet away.  My next mini weight loss goal is to hit 148.  That’s my 10% milestone as well as 15lbs lost since joining Weight Watchers.  My “bonus goal” for February was to get there, but since it’s still 2.6 pounds away, I’m not sure I’ll get there this month, but if I continue at this rate, it will be soon!

 

348. Weight Watchers Wednesday: PointsPlus 2012 Week 9

Last week’s weight: 153lbs
This week’s weight: 151.4.lbs
Change: –1.6lbs
Total Loss: -13.4lbs, this session: -5.4 lbs

Reflections

To quote Angel… “Numfar, do the dance of joy!”

I was definitely doing the dance of joy when I weighed in last night.  That is another new low!  Now let’s just hope that I don’t gain half of it back next week which seems to the trend for me following a big loss.  Honestly, I was actually kind of surprised by the big loss this week.  I had a good week, and I was definitely expecting to lose some.  However, I did kind of overdo it with the Super Bowl snacking so I was legitimately surprised and super excited by this week’s loss!

I’ve been cranking out the activity points lately, and while I didn’t stick to last week’s goals exactly, I did do well.  I’m actually pretty proud of my fitness endeavors as of late.  I’ve been doing a good job of working on strength training and cross training and getting in my mileage.  Anyway, onto the goals review:

  • Fitness
    • Run Thursday (3 miles treadmill) and strength training (core) – I got up early and ran 3 miles outside before work. I ended up skipping the strength training though.
    • Run Saturday (8 miles) – My route came up short at 7.6 miles, and I needed to use the bathroom so I called it “good enough”
    • Spin Sunday and strength training (upper body) – I actually ended up doing my run on Sunday because the weather was better so I didn’t spin.  However, I did do the Saturday morning Kettlebell Intervals which is a full body ST workout.
    • I also ended up doing a 30 minute solo spin session on Friday evening along with the ST I was supposed to do on Thursday.
  • Food
    • Track 7 days (particularly Super Bowl) – I didn’t do a very good tracking during the Super Bowl; however, I tracked everything else all week
    • 2 beers max on Super Bowl Sunday – I didn’t drink anything on Sunday…but I did overdo it at darts last Wednesday.
    • Eat out 2 times max – done.

The one thing I’ve really been focusing on lately is making sure I’m eating enough.  This might seem kind of strange, but since I’ve started marathon training, and as I progress through it, it’s really important for me to be adequately fueling myself.  Despite what you might thing from watching The Biggest Loser, marathon training really isn’t a great way to keep up weight loss.  If you’re not adequately fueling you run the risk of poor runs, injury, etc. as well as actually halting weight loss because your body kicks into “starvation mode.”  Alternatively, you can definitely end up eating way too much during marathon training because of the insane number of calories you’re burning.

So for my strategy, which seems to be working really well these last couple weeks, has been to use my earned activity points before my weekly points.  I’m also making it a point to eat at least 50% of my earned activity points.  I plan to keep reassessing this as I progress through training.  If I’m constantly starving, I’ll probably increase my daily points or focus on eating more of my activity or weekly points.  My goal is also to make sure I’m spending these points (mostly) on quality foods not just eating garbage because I can.  I definitely think that will make a difference in my ability to keep losing weight.

I don’t really have any specific goals this week other than to make sure I get my long run in.  It’s supposed to be chilly and snowy this weekend so there’s a good chance I’m going to have to force myself out the door, but it must be done.  I cannot slack on these long runs…especially not early on while they’re “easy” mileage.

 

 

346. Goals, Goals, Goals: February 5 Challenge

I didn’t set any specific January goals; I just chose my verb for the year. (It’s dare in case you don’t remember.)  However, this month it’s back to goals, goals, goals.   I’m going back to a numbers based challenge like my December to Remember, but on a slightly smaller scale.  I’m also focusing on my verb by picking goals that require me to push myself a little bit.  And of course I’ve got myself a clever challenge name.

February 5 Challenge

This month’s challenge revolves around the number 5 because my ultimate goal for February is to be down 5 pounds.  However, losing 5 pounds is not actually one of my goals.  It’s so of a bonus goal.  The hope is that reaching my 5 goals for the month will get my to the 5 pound mark.  I’ll be tracking this month’s goals on Laura’s group tracking sheet (BOTD February Challenge Tracker) so be sure to check that often.

The Goals

  1. Earn 150 activity points
  2. Track 25 complete days
  3. Complete 5 items on my Mission 101 list
  4. Attend 5 group fitness classes
  5. Do 5 strength training sessions

The Reward

If I reach all 5 goals, I’m going to buy a Fitbook.  I love the concept, and people who have them seem to love them.  I’ve been tossing around the idea of getting one, but I’ve yet to commit to buying one.  I’ve always got a zillion tracking options so I don’t really need the Fitbook, but I love the idea of them especially for tracking workouts.  Mostly, I probably just want to play around with it.

If I reach my goal of 5 pounds lost I’m going to buy How to Cook Everything Vegetarian by Mark Bittman.  I’ve had this cookbook on my wish list or a while, but I always talk myself out of it because Do I really need another cookbook?   However, I’ve been doing a great job of making recipes from my cookbooks over the last two month so another cookbook is totally in order!

345. Weight Watchers Wednesday: PointsPlus 2012 Week 8

Last week’s weight: 153.8lbs
This week’s weight: 153.lbs
Change: –.8lbs
Total Loss: -11.8lbs, this session: -3.8 lbs

Reflections

I didn’t do a weigh in post last week because my usual meeting was cancelled.  I did attend a meeting on Friday afternoon and weigh in there so that’s where the 153.8 above comes from.  I was absolutely thrilled to see 153 again.  I honestly went in to weigh in feeling a bit pessimistic.  I’ve been ravenous pretty much since I stopped being sick, and especially this past weekend after running my half.  I ate a lot this weekend, and I ate out a lot.  Even though I rocked out 55 activity points for the week (21 alone during my half on Saturday!) and barely even touched my weekly points, you can never be sure how you’re body is going to react to that much activity and that much eating out.

I’m still not back down to my lowest, but I’m close.  And I’m absolutely thrilled to finally see a loss again.  I only actually gained less than 1.5 pounds, but it’s still frustrating to see +.4, +.2, +.6 week after week.  I know there could be a million and one different reasons for those tiny gains.  It could be that I upped my workout frequency and intensity a lot in January.  It could be that I was sick a lot in January and surviving on less than desirable foods.  It could be that I started doing a lot more weight training in January.  Hell, it could be that I actually legitimately gained that much weight in January.   Regardless of the reason, I’m glad to start February on a high note, and I am definitely riding high on a wave of both running and weight loss momentum right now.

My goals for this week are kind of goals kind of just a schedule for myself.

  • Fitness
    • Run Thursday (3 miles treadmill) and strength training (core)
    • Run Saturday (8 miles)
    • Spin Sunday and strength training (upper body)
  • Food
    • Track 7 days (particularly Super Bowl)
    • 2 beers max on Super Bowl Sunday
    • Eat out 2 times max

One of my February goals (which will be posted this afternoon) is to drop 5 pounds this month.  It’s an ambitious goal considering my average rate of loss, but like I said, I’m riding high on motivation and momentum right now.  I want to really make the most of this!

342. In The News: Is BMI Ever TMI?

http://schoolsofthought.blogs.cnn.com/2012/01/12/is-bmi-ever-tmi/

I came across this article (That one, above, click the link and read.  I’ll wait.) today which I found really interesting.  There’s a new law in Georgia intended to combat childhood obesity.  Students will be weighed in PE classes, and their BMI information will be sent home to their parents.  The information is also being reported to the state.  There’s definitely an element of privacy/ personal rights and responsibility here, but that’s not something I really see as a huge issue.  In the age of Facebook, Twitter, and the airing of your personal business all over the internet, I often struggle to buy into the invasion of privacy argument.  I’m not saying that isn’t a concern for some: just that it’s not a concern for me.  My concern is whether or not this is an effective method or a wasted effort.

I tend to agree with one of the individual, Randy Weiner, who was quoted in the article.  I don’t necessarily think it’s a bad law, particularly because the information is being provided to parents not the children themselves.  I think the intention is good, but ultimately I don’t think it will be highly effective.  If the parent’s don’t value good health and nutrition then giving them information about their child’s BMI probably isn’t going to change much.

While I think much of the responsibility for childhood obesity falls to the parent’s, I do think schools can impact change.  Personally, I think the more effective way for schools to combat childhood obesity is through education, better nutrition in school lunches, and increase activity for students.  Those are the kind of laws I would like to see passed because those are the kind of laws I think would have the biggest impact overall.

Honestly, I don’t think there’s any sort of “quick-fix” or immediate way to reduce childhood obesity.  Obesity in general is deeply ingrained in our current culture, and I think it order to really impact change, we need to be focusing on more long-term efforts like educating our children so they can, hopefully, grow into healthy(ier) adults and raise children who are healthier than they were.

What do you think?  Do you think this is a good law?  Do you think it’s an effective way to impact change in the current childhood obesity rates?  I’d love to hear your thoughts!

 

 

341. Weight Watchers Wednesday: PointsPlus 2012 Week 5

Last week’s weight: 152.4lbs
This week’s weight: 152.8lbs
Change: +.4lbs
Total Loss: -12lbs, this session: -4 lbs

Reflections

I don’t have much to say about the gain itself.  There’s a high probably it’s a direct result of the fact that I was wearing workout pants rather than the Old Navy compression capris I usually wear for weigh in.  That said, even though this .4lb gain probably wasn’t a “real” gain, I don’t expect I would have seen a loss this week regardless of the pants I was wearing.

First of all, I went a little overboard this past weekend at the boy’s annual Festivus party.  All the Jameo and ginger ale certainly didn’t encourage the scale to move in a downward manner.  I didn’t track a good chunk of the weekend which is always a kiss of death for me.  Along with just plain not tracking, I also did a lot of “secret eating” over the past week.  It wasn’t so much that I was activity hiding the fact that I was eating so much as it was self-denial.  I would “forget” about things I ate and not track them.  There was definite undocumented mindless munching happening last week as well.

For this week I’m focusing on dealing with the tracking issues.  In addition to tracking, I’m going to journal my eats – hunger levels, moods, etc.  This requires me to be even more cognizant of what goes into my mouth.

Aside from the tracking and “secret eating” issues, I actually had a pretty good week.

In terms of last week’s goals, I did most of the things I was hoping too.  I averaged 5 a day on my fruits and veggies.  (Some days I was short, but other days I had substantially more.)  I attended the Kettle Bell Intervals class at the gym and did a core strength session; however, I missed my long run because I was really sore from the Kettle Bells class.  I also did a much better job of drinking water on the weekend.  I didn’t actually track so I don’t know how much I drank, but I did go out of my way to drink more water.

I also had a pretty awesome non-scale victory this week.  On Saturday, I went shopping for a dress for my friend Val’s wedding.  Not only was it not the usual soul-crushing experience for me, but I also left the fitting room feeling almost giddy.  I found two dressed both in a size 10!  One of the dresses is a bit tight, but since they were both a great deal, and I only need one to fit right away, I bought both.

Here’s to a fantastic week because I am so ready to see 150lbs!