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Fitness filter - I promise they usually aren't this long! - The Fucking Bluebird of Goddamn Happiness [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]

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Fitness filter - I promise they usually aren't this long! [Mar. 25th, 2005|10:18 am]
[Current Mood |excitedexcited]

We have a whole new bunch of people for the Fitness Filter - everyone say hi!

I feel compelled to catch people up on the situation (you know, like those episodes they have halfway through the first season of a show that provide flashbacks to earlier episodes in order to get the new viewers up to speed). So let's start with the basics.

- I'm a month and change away from being 47 years old. I have struggled with my weight all my life.

- I'm 5'8" tall, with an Amazon frame, so my goal weight is around 160 pounds.

- I started this project on January 1 of 2005, when I weighed in at a whopping 286.8 pounds.

- As of this morning I weigh 248.4 pounds, a 38.4 pound change.

- There is nothing about my diet that has any "fad" aspects. I haven't cut carbs. I haven't eschewed all refined foods. I haven't started eating only "superfoods" or tried to do food combinations or purchased any supplements or had any surgery. I most certainly haven't deprived myself of good food.

Here is my plan:

1. Protein at every meal

2. Three meals a day, without fail

3. Aiming for around 1800-2000 calories, trying to err on the high side so that my metabolism doesn't go into starvation mode. The days when I eat less than this, I never lose weight. Starving yourself is a surefire way to be miserable, see no change, and give up.

4. Regular exercise, which I try to do before eating and before work in the morning so that I get the most metabolism boost possible from it. (Except weekends, when, screw that - I work out when I need a break from homework.)

5. A glass of wine in the evening (I swear it is working wonders).(EDIT: Not doing this so much now. Just not that interested.)

6. Nothing is forbidden, but everything must be accounted for - I am writing down every scrap I eat and trying to estimate up on portion size.

7. FitDay. It's a wonderful way to keep track of it all.

8. Enough sleep. I'm not quite achieving this, but I'm much closer than I've been in the past.

9. Eating only delicious things. Breakfast can't really live up to that now, but it is medicinal (All-Bran with milk, a small can of tunafish or a boiled egg). Getting enough fiber is a challenge, and this has made a big difference in my feeling healthy. Other than that, I try to make really conscious choices about what I'm eating. I won't turn down a bit of something delicious because it is a billion calories, but I limit myself to a bite or two and really savor the taste.

10. A multivitamin, just to make certain that I'm getting all my nutrients.

11. No junk snacks. In the past I have used finals as an excuse for gobbling up bags of Chex Mix, Cheetos, candy. It's the one thing I have made myself give up. On the other hand, when we went out for a friend's cheese- and chocolate-fondue birthday party I enjoyed both because they were treats and I made room in my day for them. It's not a matter of deprivation, but of good choices.

12. Weigh every day. This doesn't work for a lot of people, since they become too obsessive or frustrated, but for me it's the only effective monitor. Definitely a matter of personality, this one.

That's it. I don't have meetings, I don't have complicated grocery lists, I don't have weird food. Ferrett is cooking out of the Cooking Light cookbooks, but they are great - you don't have to be dieting to enjoy their recipes. I can go out to eat with people and not make strange demands, just better choices.

I had reached the age when I thought that I would never be able to lose weight, but that has proven not to be true. My focus is on being healthier, rather than just on the scale, so when I have weeks like the last one where my weight climbed daily and steadily from 249.8 to 254.8, I was able to keep going, stay on target - and in the past two days enjoy seeing all that and a little more evaporate.

It would be lovely if the human body were a better machine: Reduction of 1000 calories/day x 7 days = 2 pounds of weight loss. Alas, we are more complex than that. Metabolism varies, there is water weight one week, false loss through dehydration the next. There are plateaus, and there is the matter of gained muscle mass. So concentrating only on the scale is too frustrating, and the rewards too sporadic. That's why my concentration is focused on being healthier, having more energy, feeling better (though not this week). The weight loss is important, but it's not the whole point.

I've yoyo-ed a number of times in my life, including one time when I dropped down to an almost anorectic 129 pounds. I've struggled with bulimia off and on. And I finally came to realize that, though I knew how to suffer and deprive myself to thin, I didn't know how to LIVE thin. That's what this is all about, learning to eat and live like a fit person. I'm glad I have all this support on my journey.

[User Picture]From: ohhjuliet
2005-03-25 03:28 pm (UTC)
You're an inspiration in this (and so much more too)

I do solemnly swear I'm going to clean off my treadmill and use the damned thing in lieu of whining that my jeans are too tight. Surprisingly enough, whining is not burning as much calories as one might think.

Keep up the good work, Gini!
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2005-03-25 03:49 pm (UTC)
Part of it is not bearing yourself up for having to start slow. My workout routines suffered so many false starts because I pushed myself too hard, made myself miserable, and it was a relief to fail.

Half a mile at 2.5 mph is not failure, if that is where you need to start. It's half a mile you wouldn't have walked otherwise. (That's often the way I get myself on the NordicTrack - I have to start. I may only go for five minutes, but I have to start. Then once I'm there, I'm fine.)
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[User Picture]From: longtimegone
2005-03-25 03:33 pm (UTC)
There is nothing about my diet that has any "fad" aspects. I haven't cut carbs. I haven't eschewed all refined foods. I haven't started eating only "superfoods" or tried to do food combinations or purchased any supplements or had any surgery. I most certainly haven't deprived myself of good food.

God. that's it! That's the secret. People have asked me what I am doing to lose weight and they totally lose interest the minute I tell them that. Most people want to hear "quick fix" not "change your entire outlook on food and your lifestyle".

Breakfast has been a huge thing for me. We have a cafeteria here with YUMMY (read: fattening) food. I have had to start bringing my breakfast. I have a half cup of Fiber One mixed with a 6 oz container of Yoplait Light fruit flavored (usually blueberry) yogurt. I don't like milk and cereal, so this was my compromise. The whole thing is 160 calories, no saturated fat and 14 grams of fiber!

So anyway, I started out at 272 on Jan 29th of this year and I am sitting at 253.5 right now. It's a slow process, but I'm working on it day by day. I lost about 40 lbs 5 years ago and gained it all back of course. I am working hardest to change my mindset so that doesn't happen again.

*hugs* I'm glad we can all do this together!
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2005-03-25 03:47 pm (UTC)
The gaining back is so frustrating. I always felt completely out of control, like I simply could NOT keep making healthy food choices. I literally didn't know how to eat, and compulsively ate everything. It's hard for someone who has never been through it to understand how you can do amazingly stupid things to yourself and not be able to stop. I don't even understand it.

Learning to do this the right way is such an impowering process. I'm glad you are on the same journey!
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[User Picture]From: pheret1
2005-03-25 04:03 pm (UTC)
Getting enough fiber is really, really tough, especially when you're going for natural fiber (instead of Metamucil or something). What else do you do for fiber than All-Bran? I add peas to a lot of things, and use cereal as well, but usually come up short.

P.S. My old dietician said that fiber and water are two sources of energy (I went there complaining of a lack of energy)
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2005-03-25 04:09 pm (UTC)
First of all, I eat a double dose of All-Bran, so that takes care of a lot of it (though I confess that I haven't been good about this for the last few days - being mildly sick I simply haven't been able to face it). Other than that, salad and fruit.

I don't make it every day, but I do try.
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[User Picture]From: yndy
2005-03-25 04:28 pm (UTC)
Thank you... I needed to read this today...

and (¯`'·.¸(¯`'·.¸ Wooohoooo!!! Congrats on the 38.4 so far!!!¸.·'´¯)¸.·'´¯)
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2005-03-25 04:32 pm (UTC)
Thanks. It made ME happy to see that number this morning!
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[User Picture]From: zevhonith
2005-03-25 04:38 pm (UTC)
Oh, I'm really glad I asked to be on the filter! This is remarkably similar to what I'm doing - while I'm still working on a exercise regime that works for me, I'm doing *something* every day, and generally just trying to eat better, add a multivitamin, drink lots of water, etc. I haven't actually lost weight yet so much as gained it, but I know I'm living a healthier life, so I'll just wait. I'm not overweight enough to really worry about it - I'm just over 160, at 5'5" with a pretty solid frame, so I'm just looking to lose 15 pounds or so and really just be healthier.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2005-03-25 04:41 pm (UTC)
Oh, yeah, with only that much weight to lose the last thing you want to do is get on some fad diet that screws up your metabolism. There is a reason why people who lose weight fast gain back what they lost and more, and fad diets are directly responsible for that. Just working out, eating healthy, and getting enough sleep (it's amazingly important) will move you toward your goals.
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[User Picture]From: sarapada
2005-03-25 04:44 pm (UTC)
though I knew how to suffer and deprive myself to thin, I didn't know how to LIVE thin.

This is GOLD, and I really, really need to keep that difference in mind. Thank you.
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[User Picture]From: kathrynrose
2005-03-25 04:51 pm (UTC)
I didn't realize you're older than me (only three years - I'll be 44 in a couple of weeks). How old were you when you went back to school to study law? I thought you were younger than me.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2005-03-25 05:18 pm (UTC)
Oh, gosh no. I am definitely older than almost everybody on the internet! [g]

I was, in fact, your age when I went back to law school.
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[User Picture]From: xinamarie
2005-03-25 05:57 pm (UTC)
Congratulations! Your progress is inspiring.

I'm still working towards my goal weight (155-160). I'm in the middle of a cold now, so my working out schedule has been disrupted, but I've lost ten pounds so far, eight inches and about 4% body fat. I need to start watching what I eat more (I relaxed a little bit on the salads after my first month), but I'm feeling much healthier, and I can see the difference. (My double chin is gone!)

Keep it up!

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[User Picture]From: letoile82
2005-03-25 06:22 pm (UTC)
Wow, that's amazing! Especially with so much going on in your life, you've done a wonderful job! :)

I gained about 40lbs when I was pregnant with my son, and over the past 5 years, I've gained about 5-10lbs a year (a large part due to medicine I had been on). I've since stopped the medicine, and am waiting for it to leave my system. So I have about 80lbs to lose, and on a 5ft frame, it's a LOT of extra weight. I'm glad to be on your list, and to hear how you are able to achieve it all. It's very inspiring, and because of it, I think I will go work out right now! :)
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2005-03-25 06:34 pm (UTC)
It's a wonderful feedback loop. People tell me that when they are thinking of skipping a workout or eating crap, they think of me and make good decisions. And when I am tempted by such things, I think of the people on this list - to whom I will have to confess - and make good decisions!
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[User Picture]From: kimmaline
2005-03-25 09:24 pm (UTC)
Ditto on the inspiration. I know I've told you a million times, but it's a great help for me...although (you have my permission to slap me) I get REALLY jealous when I hear about you exercising. Yeah, I know. But...it just sounds so satisfying, and my whopping 15 pounds since the first of the year would be so much nicer if it was your 40. :)

But, at least I have the satisfaction of hating the people who say to me, "I just can't exercise!!!" No, I can't exercise. (and that kind of loathing burns a LOT of calories)

And for anyone not on it...FitDay is the best thing in the history of ever. I've found that Calorie King is a pretty damn good program too...maybe even better because it's an expanded FitDay with TONS of foods in it to search...but it has a yearly fee and by the time I found it I'd already had so much info into FitDay! I love being able to see where I was a few months ago, and Calorie King won't let you go backward.

Calorie King has a HUGE searchable (free) database of foods. Lots of chain restaurants, etc. It is the second best thing I've done since the start of this.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2005-03-25 11:28 pm (UTC)
Very cool. I have added it to my list of resources - thanks.

And, good job!
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[User Picture]From: heathrow
2005-03-26 03:15 am (UTC)
You are doing so wonderfully. Over the last few days, I've been feeling very yucky due to a sinus infection and my daughter being ill.

I'm so tempted to give myself a "break" from eating healthily and exercising til life gets easier. Then I read one of your posts and remove those excuses. :D

-sweaty from finishing a 2 mile WATP for Abs DVD. :D
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2005-03-26 04:24 am (UTC)
Good for you. We just walked to the used book store each carrying a box of books to sell. Only about a mile and a half round trip, but it was something.
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[User Picture]From: buttercup_
2005-04-26 02:12 am (UTC)
Hi, I found your journal while reading dreagoddess's, and just found this really inspiring :D I made a goal to adopt a new healthier lifestyle, just recently (like a few days ago recently), and I'd really like to be able to keep reading about your progress. So, um, I added you to my friendslist, and I'd really appreciate it if you'd add me to your fitness filter. Thanks :)
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2005-04-26 08:27 am (UTC)
Consider yourself added. Hi!
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[User Picture]From: ijess
2005-06-20 06:31 pm (UTC)
Hi! I think what you're doing is faboo! Its definitely a great mindset. Can I be added to your fitness filter, please? I found you through 100pluswl. Thanks :)
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2005-06-21 12:38 pm (UTC)
You're on now! I don't write about fitness all the time, but most of my locked posts are about it.
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[User Picture]From: flerly
2005-11-11 03:03 am (UTC)

Fitness Filter

I'd like to be on your fitness filter, if you don't mind. I've seen a couple posts marked Fitness Filter that go away, so I'm assuming you're locking them to fitness-friends only.

Commenting here because it was the "Fitness Filter" entry in your memories. Hope that works.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2005-11-11 03:13 am (UTC)

Re: Fitness Filter

You're on!
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