Sunday, 17 March 2013

"You turn if you want to; the lady’s not for turning" (with thanks to Margaret Thatcher)

There's something to be said for a certain stubbornness, a refusal to take the easy road when faced with difficulty.  Sometimes a stubborn nature is all that keeps us going.

Take Friday, for example.  In my rush to leave the office Thursday night I left my iPad at the office (again!).  Those of you who are familiar with my routine know that I use the iPad not only as the source of music during my time on the elliptical machine, but I also read during my workout to help pass the time.  No iPad = no distractions during my workout.  And Friday's workout was the usual 60 minutes on the elliptical.  One full hour, with nothing but my mind and the merest sliver of a view from the window to distract me.  I realized that I had left my iPad at the office as soon as I arrived home, but by then it was after midnight, and I was uncomfortable going back to the office at that time - - the sidewalks were full of drunks and panhandlers on the stretch of road between my place and the office (lots of bars and restaurants in my neighborhood), and it only gets worse the later one walks.  No thanks.

So I gritted it out.  I knew before I started that it was going to be tough to push through 60 minutes on the elliptical without any distractions.  I would have to try and keep my stride rate in the 130-140 zone without the benefit of a good beat, and I would have to check off the full 60 minutes without anything to make the time pass faster.  The only thing keeping me going was pure cussedness - - I was damned if I was going to miss a workout for the first time in 44 weeks because I forgot one of my electronic crutches at the office.  No sir.

As it happens, I actually had one of my better workouts - - the time passed as it inevitably does (the rotation of the earth around the sun working its magic), but I actually found that my natural stride rate was more in the range of 138 - 145 than 130 - 140, so I ended up burning more calories and having more steps than normal for my Friday workout.

Let that be a lesson to you, kids - - being stubborn is a blessing.  It keeps us on track when the easy thing to do would be to stay in bed.

So it being Friday and all, another week is officially in the books.  Another week, and another 1.8 pounds down, to 228.4 pounds for a total loss of 105.5 pounds.  I was really pleased with that.  It looks like the faster stride rate and addition of the wrist/ankle weights is working, so I will keep it going.

This week I am adding another pound to each wrist/ankle weight, for a total of 2 pounds per wrist or ankle (depending on the day), or 4 pounds total.  I am also upping my free weights to the 8 pound weights, and doing 4 sets of 10 reps.  I am taking the reps down from 12 to give my arms a chance to get used to the higher weight.  Other than that, I am not mixing up my routine, as it seems to be working really well.  I will keep doing the 55 minutes on the elliptical on free weights days, and do 60 minutes on the elliptical on non-weights days.  I will likely keep this program and the 8 pound weights for another month or so, depending on how I feel.

So far, so good, as far as keeping on goal goes.  Ever since I started using the elliptical and keeping a food diary last July, I haven't really had any plateaus to speak of.  Whether it's a factor of being conscious of what I am eating and drinking, or having a more efficient cardio program, I don't know, but whatever is driving it, I am still on track to (eventually) hit 165 pounds.

This week was full of win as far as positive comments from my workmates.  I have officially made the leap and incorporated my size 18 suits into my wardrobe.  As a result, people have suddenly noticed that I have lost a significant amount of weight in part because these suits fit and do not look baggy, and in part because these suits are not black and camouflagey.  It's tough to hide your light under a bushel in a lilac coloured suit - - it's all there for people to see.  Anyways, that was all super motivating and very positive, and a great incentive to stick to my program to see where I can take this whole weight loss thing.

For now, here's where things stand in relation to my short term, near term, and long term goals:

Only 23 and a half pounds to go to make light heavyweight - - that's totally doable.  And only 25 and a half pounds away from overweight - - it's so close I can almost taste it.  It's funny that for many people being overweight would be a terrible thing, and for me, it would be something I achieved only after a year and a half of grueling effort.  I suppose it depends on where you're coming from.

In honour of another week on track, I leave you with a photo of me in my Misfits shirt taken this weekend.  The shirt is now too big for me, but the bones glow in the dark so I am reluctant to donate it.  Besides, wearing this shirt is, for now, the only way that I can have visible clavicles [grin].


  1. One thing that I will NEVER forget about you, is your dedication and perseverance. Thank you. I love reading your blog and my whole family is in awe with your achievement. Well done.

  2. I have to tell you that you have given me the boost I needed to start this 150lb weight loss I am currently on. I read your blog from the beginning over the weekend and now I can't wait for next week's post. great job - you have no idea what a motivation you are