Sunday, 25 August 2013
Off the reservation ... but coming back
The real truth about trying to lose weight is that it is what goes into your mouth that drives your results. You can exercise all you want, but if you go crazy with food, there is not enough exercise in the world to overcome all those calories.
Confession time. This past week has been a bad one for snacking and for dining out or in with family and friends - lots of snacks, and lots of bigger than normal meals with wine. The only saving grace is that I have still worked out on plan, so my "consecutive weeks worked out" streak remains intact - now up to 65 weeks and counting. The bad side is that I have really let my eating, especially my late night snacking, go completely out of control.
It's time to take things back in hand. I am doing a few things this week to shake things up and break out of this negative spiral.
First, I have stopped weighing myself every day. Even though I only recorded my weight once a week, I was getting completely obsessed with the numbers on the scale, and when they did not decrease, I would get frustrated and binge out on chocolate. I know, this is not exactly productive behaviour, but what can you do - - they call it "emotional eating", not "rational eating" for a reason.
I am not sure what my new weigh-in intervals will be, but I don't plan to step on the scale until the end of the month just to get a baseline, and then perhaps not until the following month-end. We'll see if I can resist the temptation to weigh-in. I have noticed a real tendency for my moods to follow the scale - - when I gain, for whatever reason, I feel depressed, and when I lose, I feel energized and unstoppable. Those mood swings are taking over my days, and I need to break out of them.
I have not weighed myself for more than a week, and it's actually kind of liberating. I did hop on the scale for a directional read this morning to see how much work I need to do to get down to my lowest weight - - a lot - - but I was expecting a bump yesterday after a gourmet dinner out at North 44 restaurant with the family last night.
Second, the incremental chocolate dish on my desk has been banished. I could not resist the lure of those bite sized chocolates, and they were killers to my carefully planned out days - - especially on days when the aforementioned scale is being uncooperative. The chocolates ran out on Friday afternoon, and they are not getting replaced any time soon. This will help me cut out the illicit snacking that has been my achilles heel the past few weeks.
Third, I have completely changed up my free weight routine. I have been doing the same free weight routine virtually unchanged since October, and it's time to mix things up and give my muscles a bit of a challenge.
This morning was the first morning of the new routine, and it was a killer. Very challenging, which is good. And yes, the new routine includes planks, as promised, which lead to all sorts of creative swearing on the part of yours truly. I can still only do 5 planks of 30 seconds each - - barely! - - but hope that over time as I continue to work on my core I will be able to do more.
Fourth, it's time to step up the elliptical again. I took the cross-ramp up to 8 a couple of weeks ago, so today was the time to take the tension up to 8, from 7. It felt challenging, but good. I felt great after finishing my workout, and I certainly had a good sweat this morning. I released all the glows today. I may have actually experienced an endorphin.
Finally, I need to re-integrate rest days into my program. I had been good about taking rest days for a while there, but I let my obsession with the scale push me into working out without taking rest days for a few weeks. One of the symptoms of overtraining is depression, which just leads to binge eating for me. Another symptom of overtraining is lack of progress. Just what one wants to see after pushing it as hard as I have been doing. I know that I have a tendency to overdo things, and failing to take rest days is just one part of that.
So, this week I shake myself, dust myself off, and get back on plan. The workout plan is on track, and has never fallen off track, so now it is time to get the eating under control. Today was Day 1 - on track. Tomorrow I will work on stacking another good day on top of Day 1. Put enough good days together, and this week will take care of itself.