Monday, 4 August 2014

132.3 pounds down - and another size

It's the beginning of a new month and you know what that means - - summary time!

As you know I have been working out and trying to eat better for about the last two months or so (coincidentally right around the time that I started my fabulous new job).  At the end of June I saw some positive results, but July was really the first full month back on the program.  The program is a bit different than before - - with the training we have been doing for the Weekend to End Women's Cancers 32 km charity walk on September 6, my workouts have shifted from mostly elliptical workouts with some weights to mostly walking outside, with weights and elliptical thrown in on non-walking days. 

I could tell I was doing a lot of walking, because I finished the month at #65 on the total list of steps taken for the Redditors who Fitbit group, out of more than 1,000 people.  That's right, yours truly was in the top 10% of all Redditors who Fitbit according to my steps taken.  Go me!  If you want to friend me on Fitbit I am user #22LQKV.

I was very curious to see the results of all that walking, and the results are now in. 

As for my weight, I lost 12 pounds in July, for a total of 132.3 pounds lost overall.  I am still chipping away at the weight that I had gained as a result of my uncontrolled emotional binge eating during my job search and job change, but I am very happy with my progress now that I have gotten back into my healthy routine.

Put simply, all of the emotional eating and slacking off put me behind by about a full year in that I was around my current weight about this time last year.  And you know what?  That's OK.  I am not in a time-limited contest to beat anyone to a healthy weight, and as long as I am making progress in either my eating habits or my workouts I am not going to beat myself up for past poor decisions.

It's not that the past is past, it's that belabouring past errors doesn't accomplish anything and it only serves to frustrate me in the here and now.  Instead of focusing on that big leap from 185 pounds to 213+ pounds and how fast I can get back down to 185, I am focusing on the steady whittling down from 213+ pounds to where I am now, at 201.6 pounds.   I am not as focused this year about how quickly I can lose the weight since I have found that for me, that leads to unhealthy obsessiveness and general discontent about how slowly the weight comes off.  Rather, I try and make better decisions each day and look to see the weight come off in its own time.  Very zen of me, I know.  I am more and less successful at this kind of laissez-faire attitude depending on the day, but overall I am better at being patient than I was last year, so I will take this as a win.

This time around I try and celebrate the wins more and don't obsess over the minor gains if I am generally sticking to my plan.  As a result, my attitude is much more positive overall, and I feel better about myself and am generally very content with my renewed progress to date.

The measurements show the progress I have made since my May-June reboot (all measurements in inches):

I am not as focused on hitting a particular size as I am to see the positive changes in my body, however going down a size or two, as I have, is still very motivating.  Everything is coming down with the walks, except my calves.  Sheesh - - my Little Lulu cankles are destined to stay with me forever, alas. 

I am pleased to see the measurements come down to a proper size 14, which is well within the zone of being able to shop anywhere I want.  I suspect that my body is actually built to be a natural 14, even though according to my measurements I have gone down to a 12 or even a 10 in some styles (last year, before eating my way back to a 16-18).  Right now I am not going to fuss too much about the sizes and just pay attention to my body and try and wear things that are comfortable regardless of their size.  I tend to favour slightly larger size shorts, jeans and skirts, given that I have a decent badonkadonk, while I can wear smaller sweaters now that the girls are smaller.  Yes, I understand that the previous sentence is full of colourful metaphors for various parts of my anatomy - - deal with it. 

The Nerd and I went down to Columbus Ohio this weekend to visit his parents in their new home.  I spent a lot of time trying to be sensible in the face of all the delicious food - - his family has a delightful tradition of pre-dinner cocktails (complete with snacks) and it is all too easy to eat 300-400 calories just in rye and crackers and cheese and hummus and veggies before the meal even starts.  Yum!  I also tried to make a point of drinking lots of water, since I find that generally American food is higher in sodium than the Nerd and I are used to consuming in the average day.

On a side note, I discovered that I am a rye snob, because our "well" rye at home is Crown Royal, while our "nice" rye is s special edition Crown Royal.  Apparently normal people consider Crown Royal to be their upmarket rye, so it turns out that I have been very spoiled in the Canadian Whiskey department. 

Although the Nerd's mom does engage in short post-meal walks, they are nothing like the multi-mile marches that the Nerd and I have been doing as part of training for our big walk.  But at least it was some physical activity while we were visiting, which is better than sitting on my butt for the entire time.  I remember when I couldn't keep up with the Nerd's parents on their walks, and now I find them to be more of a stroll than a proper walk - - how times have changed!  All in all, it was a wonderful visit and I can't wait to go back.

Speaking of training walks, here is a map of where we have been walking so far, with the coloured lines indicating our walks:

A few points of note regarding the above map.  First, the big triangle is not where the Nerd and I discovered the power of flight, but it is where the GPS extrapolated the subway ride we took from Lawrence West subway station back downtown to finish off one of our walks. 

We also did one walk in which we drove out to the Leslie and Lawrence East area to walk through one of Toronto's many park systems.  You can see this 3.75 mile loop (for 7.5 miles total) all by itself in the top right hand side of the map.  Interestingly, we did another 5.5 mile walk up the Don Valley trail (for an 11 mile round trip) last weekend, and we almost met up with the southern end of our previous park walk.  Perhaps next weekend we will close the loop, as we have a 12.5 mile walk on the schedule for Saturday morning. 

On an personal note, I felt absolutely fine after our 11 mile walk - - a little tired, but in no obvious discomfort.  This is a big improvement over our last 12.5 mile walks and shows the benefit of doing the training plan the right way around. (!)

Finally, I am not sure if I have officially debuted my haircut, which I got just before the third interview for my current job.  I decided that growing out curly hair is just too frustrating, so I went short, as can be seen in this photo of me and my sister from her birthday in June:

I'm the one on the right

When telling each other about the dresses we were wearing we initially thought we had brought the same dress for dinner out, but we were both simply au courant with the current black and white trend.   

August has more of the same on tap - - the Nerd and I will continue our training walks, and expect to walk around 26 miles a week for the next couple of weeks, in preparation for the big charity walk at the beginning of September.  I will try and keep integrating free weights into my workouts 2-3 times a week, keeping the recent additions of reverse crunches and standing calf raises.  And of course, there's the old standby of the elliptical for those days when walks are not planned. 

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