Like a typical stock chart...

     ...nothing goes in a straight line.

    For this week's weigh-in I had my first week of a weight increase rather than a decrease.  This didn't surprise me as my diet was off track and my weekly activity was down.  I didn't eat badly but I took in more calories than I was burning.  With that in mind I am making sure to reset my meal plans and get back to the times I am eating them.  Having my last meal between 3 and 6 PM has been important to my plan.  For the past year I was eating far too many calories, and bad ones at that, after dark and up until midnight.  As I lay in bed at night feeling a little bit hungry I simply tell myself that is the sound of fat leaving my body.  

    HOWEVER...  with this little set back I decided to slip in an opportunity to have a cheat day.  When I have a good weigh-in I am less inclined to have a cheat day because I feel that if I do I am taking a backwards step from my progress.  This week, since I had a tiny setback anyway, I might as well do a little more damage before I reset the plan. So, with that in mind, I did what I haven't done in two months.

GoPuff Ben Jerry's cookie dough

    But wait! There's more!

Ben Jerry's cookie dough mint chocolate cookie

    I had enough GoPuff points for a free pint of Ben and Jerry's.  Free ice cream is such a dilemma for me that it might as well have already been in my freezer. After all, who can fall asleep with an uneaten pint of ice cream in the freezer?  Not this guy!  It took less than 30 minutes after delivery for me to empty both pints.  It felt like that time I found my second favorite flavor, Vanilla Heath Bar Crunch, in the convenience store freezer.  I hadn't seen it in stores for so long that I bought all 10 pints that they had.  I put them in my deep freezer with the intention of having one a week.  Instead, I wiped out all 10 in two weeks.  The upside was I didn't crave that flavor again for about a year.  This week I feel as though I've handled my ice cream needs for the next two months.  

The profile tells it like it is: "Ice Cream Junkie".

First Weigh-In of October: Down 15 pounds in 7 weeks!


    In the fall of 1998 I went shopping at Target for a pair of jeans.  I thought I knew my size, as I thought I did when I bought pants in May of this year, but as I did this year I underestimated my weight and size.  In the fitting room I was mortified to find that for the first time in my life I had to buy pants in a 36 waist.  I still remember that upsetting fitting room experience.  I went home and got on the scale to see that I was something just over 180 pounds.  
    It shouldn't have come as a surprise that I had just reached the peak of my weight at that point in my life.  For several years before I was drinking up to four Mountain Dew per day as my "energy drink".  I don't think Red Bull was a thing yet and I am grateful for that.  Earlier in 1998 I had switched to bottled Starbucks Frappuccino, again three or four per day, to drink something "healthier".  I made bread at home and ate it by the loaf.  My lifestyle was high carb and low exercise.  It was almost comical how buying one larger pair of pants made something snap in my brain.  

     The day after I bought that "huge" pair of pants I went to Big 5 Sporting Goods and bought my first pair of inline skates.  They were Nike Air and felt like the most comfortable pair of shoes I had ever worn.  I also bought dumbbells in various weights and an Ab Roller with the Brenda Dykgraaf 8 Minute Abs video cassette.  Things were about to get serious.

    My workday ended at 1:00 with the close of the stock market.  I had the skates next to my desk and had been looking forward all day to wrapping my work and hitting the streets for a long, intense, fat burning skate.  By 1:10 I had my skates on and headed out the door.  I was energized, motivated, and was committed to my next pair of pants being smaller than the last.  

    30 minutes later...

    I was back home, out of my skates, sweating, panting, leg muscles burning.  I was exhausted after 20 to 30 minutes.  It was a long time ago but I am pretty certain I was not daunted by the surprising lack of endurance I had for my short time on those skates.  I got on them again the next day, and the next, and the next.  My 20 to 30 minute skate time lengthened to an hour, then two, and over the months to follow became an entire afternoon.  Initially I would skate around my neighborhood and the nearby park.  As my endurance grew I took the bike path all the way across the city for a four hour round trip.  I took my skates with me everywhere.  When my sons visited for he summer we spent a lot of time on our skates.  I joined the skate park at Palm Desert Park where at 34 I was considered a senior citizen.  I would spend my entire Saturdays skating the Embarcadero from AT&T Park to Pier 39 or from the Santa Monica Pier to the Venice Pier.  Skating was part of my daily life.

    My diet radically changed as well.  My high carb, high calorie, high caffeine days were done.  I dropped all carbs for the first few months.  My primary dietary intake was bacon, eggs, and steak.  I had bacon and eggs for breakfast, a steak for lunch, and either bacon and eggs or steak for dinner.  If there was an exception it was a Double Double protein style from In-N-Out.  I went cold turkey off the Frappucinos.  I endured four days of thundering headaches but after they passed I was only drinking a minimum of 4.5 liters of water per day.  I later added in Grape Nuts as my breakfast for my only carbs of the day.  I was a devotee of the original Dr. Atkins Diet Revolution book as written by him in 1972.  (To this day I have a contentious difference of opinion with the updated diet guidelines, many of which were adopted after Dr. Atkins death to appeal to a wider and less disciplined market.  But that's another post.....)

    By the end of my very dedicated commitment to transforming my body I had reached 122 pounds.  I had lost 60 pounds which was one third of my body weight.  I didn't regularly track my weight as a benchmark of my progress as I do now.  The priority was how my clothes fit and how I felt.  Those are important measures now too, but I as I'm getting committed to these lifestyle changes again it is helpful and motivating to see weekly measurable progress on the scale.  The exciting benchmark at that time was shopping for my sons and myself in the same kid's department at Macy's or Nordstrom.  That was fun! 

Me in my kids size 16 (May 2000)

    I'm not looking to reach 122 again.  My first target is 166, the weight I was at in January 2020 before the pandemic locked us down and Uber Eats became my primary provider of meals.  My second target is 154 which by the BMI charts is the upper limit of a normal weight range for my height.  After that I'd like to get under 140 just enough to keep me in the middle of the normal range for BMI.  The scale is a nice way to quantify progress, but ultimately it's about how I feel, how my clothes fit, and maintaining optimum health.  

    If you've read all of this thank you.  I assure you that you are one of only a very few.  I welcome you as a reader and would be flattered if I cultivated some followers or other who are working on their health as well.  The benefit for me in this blog is that it keeps me focused on my efforts to eat well, exercise, and stay committed to a goal.  When I lust over a pint of Ben and Jerry's or I see the cookies and scones passing through my hands I think about the number I am going to put up on this blog next Monday.  I don't want to have to answer for gained weight because I lacked the discipline to pass on a carb binge.  Posting my progress publicly, even if I'm the only one reading it, keeps me accountable.

The Monday Weigh-In: September 20, 2021

    Monday's weigh-in marked 7 straight weeks of weight loss. It was less than the 2 pound minimum I targeted, however, the 7 week trend continues down and I will take any number as long as it is lower than the last one.  It was another week of lower calorie healthy food without a serious exercise boost.  I'm lifting light weights but I haven't gotten into any cardio.  That's something to work on.

    The lower number was exciting and I continue to feel much better and more energetic.  The best part of this weeks progress came when I tried on a pair of pants that I had never been able to wear.  In May I bought two pairs of khakis in a size 36.  I didn't try them on before I bought them.  I assumed I only added 2 inches from the 34's I couldn't fit into anymore.  I took the pants home, put them on, and could not button them. It wasn't even close. I was too fat.  I was also too stubborn to exchange the pants or buy 38's. I wore one pair of stretchy 36's all summer rather than give in and buy bigger pants.  Now when I put on the 36's they button easily and are not at all tight.  That is this weeks best motivation to keep up the work and make sure I do not break the downtrend on my weight loss chart.   

10 Pounds in the First Month

    I was really looking forward to today's weigh-in and was pretty confident that I would get under 180.  There was a nagging thought, however, that the large lunch and dinner on Wednesday might have been too much. Maybe that extra Perfect Bar I had yesterday was going to keep me a few ounces from the goal.  Did I exercise enough? (No.)  I'm very goal oriented and I don't like missing my goals.  So when the numbers rolled to a stop like the wheels on a slot machine.....

    It wasn't like a jackpot but it still felt pretty good to hit the goal. I know that from prior weight loss efforts that the first 10 is always the easiest.  I'm 10 down since I started the blog on August 9, and 15 since my high weigh-in back on May 24.

    For this week I'm going to shoot for 3 pounds down.  My walking and running is limited by Plantar Fasciitis.  I love my Dr. Martens but the lack of an arch tore my foot apart.  I downloaded the app for renting bikes downtown so I will give that a try.  

    I was telling myself all weekend that if I made the goal this week I was going to splurge on some Millie's ice cream.  But, no, that would feel like a step backwards.  When I'm on a roll, I like to keep it rolling.

Weekly Weigh-in Biweekly Update

    In January of 2017 I saw my doctor in California for a routine physical. I knew my weight was high but I didn't realize until that day that I was 204.  I had never weighed that much.  I had been on blood pressure meds since 2014 but they didn't seem to be helping.  I certainly wasn't taking enough responsibility for things I could do to manage my blood pressure and other out of balance aspects of my health.  Based on my blood work my doctor wanted to add "pre-diabetic" meds to my BP meds.  Adding new meds was not a step I was willing to take.

    Based on all of this new information from my doctor I did start to take my health and weight seriously again.  When I had my appendix out in September of 2018 all of my blood panel numbers were in normal ranges, my blood pressure was normal and healthy, and I stopped the blood pressure meds.  My weight was down over 40 pounds from 204 in 2017 and I maintained the low to mid 160's until the pandemic months arrived.

    I was really looking forward to today's weigh-in as I felt I made some good progress.  I was disappointed with last weeks (August 30) number as I want to drop at least 2 pounds a week.  At today's number of 181, however, I lost 3 pounds in this past week.  For next week a sub-180 number is on the radar.  I think a 170 handle will ensure an on time post next week.

Third Weigh-in

I didn't blog an update last week after my August 16 weigh-in so I'm going to catch up both weeks today.  Regardless of my weight the best part of the last two weeks is that I already feel better physically.  I'm not exercising aggressively or even moderately at this point.  I'm walking more, lifting light weights at home, and most importantly eating better.  I'm keeping my calories low and my food quality high.  I am (mostly) avoiding junk, eating lower carbs, and having at least one salad per day.  My splurge is on Starbucks chocolate chip cookies.  I know I had at least 5 this week.  Free and discounted stuff plus triple stars as a partner; that's challenging.  I'm going to a cycle bar on Wednesday and see how that works.  With the added weight in the past year I notice more joint aches in my knees and ankles. I do want to get back into running at some point, but that's about 20 pounds from here.

Here's my numbers for the past two weeks: