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Archive for the ‘on track’ Tag

Momentum   Leave a comment

So I’ve been waiting until I get home at night to try and post and there’s one drawback to it. I keep nodding off before I post. My momentum has stopped because I’m sitting in bed doing nothing that requires energy. It wouldn’t take a lot to fix this, just a little movement. That would create enough momentum to keep me going.

How big can a little momentum be? I’ll answer that question with one of my favorite trick questions. I can give you $1 million right now or I’ll give you a magic penny that doubles in value every day that you can’t spend for the next 30 days. Which do you choose? Most people would give me a quizzical look and say “the million bucks, obviously”.

Here’s the reason it’s a trick question. While the penny is literally as close to nothing as you can get in US currency it does have value. Double that value every day for 30 days and that lowly penny becomes over $5 million dollars. If you take the million today you’re getting less then 20% of the money you could have if you were patient and waited for the momentum to build.

How does this relate to life? Well a lot of us will avoid doing small things based on the faulty premise that because the “penny” doesn’t have much value why bother. But even a penny doubled over time can have amazing outcomes. I’m not saying if you can do .01 push-ups today you’ll be doing over 5 million by the end of the month. I’m saying that if all you can do today is a penny’s worth of work do it and try to build on it tomorrow with the momentum you’ve created. Who knows how far that will take you? I do know if you do nothing you’ll stay where you are. Take care.

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Monthly Update time.   Leave a comment

Yesterday was the monthly weigh in.  The results were good, but below what I needed to ensure I would be at or below 280 by the time of my trip to Bellingham.  I weighed in at 285.4 pounds.  That’s 7.6 pounds down from last month’s update.  A solid amount, but unfortunately it drops me just below averaging 10 pounds a month.  Not a complaint, just an observation.  My body fat percentage was 39.0% so I’m carrying 111.3 pounds of body fat.  Last month I was at 40.3%, amounting to 118.1 pounds, a difference of 6.8 pounds.  Muscle mass came in at 26.7% for a total of 76.2 pounds of muscle.  Last month it was 25.9%, totally 75.9 pounds, for a gain of .3 pounds of muscle.  That doesn’t sound like a lot but considering my usual method of exercising is walking with just a small amount of body weight exercise I think that’s pretty good.  The remaining pound of difference, give or take, comes from lost water weight.

As for exercise I think I could be doing a little better but I wouldn’t call my performance bad.  I get in at least one exercise session a day, and manage to close my 30 minute exercise ring half the time and get over half the ring 90% of the time.  There were also a number of those full ring days where I actually went well into a second ring.  Another fact to keep is for whatever reason my Apple Watch is widely inconsistent on counting exercise time. To reliably count it I need to have the exercise app tracking an activity.  So there were plenty of times I was getting a walk in that didn’t get reflected in the numbers because the watch didn’t view it as exercise.  Next month’s goal is to have at least 75% of the days be closed rings.

Food tracking wise I again have to report poor progress.  The food tracker requires inputting specific food amounts which requires weighing.  I just haven’t devoted the time in preparing meals to do the weighing.  I know I should but I get busy and don’t get it done.  Not making excuses but I think it’s also because as long as I’m following the basic keto guidelines in what I eat and I’m making progress, good progress even, I just haven’t prioritized this because it isn’t “essential”.  But I also remind myself that I have no way of knowing how much better I could be doing if I were to optimize my performance by including more accurate tracking.

And finally it’s picture time.  The top picture is this month’s progress pic, and each picture below it is going back in time.  The split image ones are my progress pics each month going backwards.  The one of me in the shorts and grey USA t-shirt was just a happy pic for me to take.  The shorts are waist size 48 and they fit comfortably enough to wear. At one time I wore a size 60 waist, so progress.  The one in the Flash t-shirt would be my “starting pic” which was actually a week or so after I started because I hadn’t thought to take one on day 1.  And the last pic of me in the black jacket goes back to 2013 when I was heavier still.  Don’t know if that was at my heaviest, which was 380 pounds, but it was close if not that.  When I see today’s progress pic and look all the way down at that it amazes me just how much progress I’ve made.  But there’s still a ways to go, and I’m confident I’ll get there.  Thanks for support and I’ll see you next month.

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Making adjustments   Leave a comment

Last post I talked about Hannibal Smith’s famous line “I love it when a plan comes together.”  I used to love tuning in every week to the A-Team just for that line.  But that’s a tv show, and this is real life.  At the end of every episode there was closure on that particular plan/event.  Occasionally it might take 2 episodes to wrap it all up.  But in short order the story goes from start to the plan coming together.  In life, having the plan come together generally isn’t so quick or efficient.

No matter how well you plan, or how good a plan it is, there’s always going to be something or things you just can’t account for in advance.  Even if it’s a great plan that gets you close to where you want to be, it’s likely there will be room for improvement.

That’s why you need to be agreeable to making adjustments.  It’s easy to get so caught up in your original plan that you don’t see that it isn’t working for you.  Or feeling that you should finish what you started.  It’s why a lot of people will keep reading a book they don’t really like.  Not finishing it is quitting, and you don’t want to be a quitter.

But is making an adjustment quitting?  Not really.  It’s learning to spend your time in a more efficient and beneficial manner.  If you stop reading a book you aren’t getting anything out of you have time to read a different book you may glean something from.  You’re still reading, it’s just more useful material.  Same with your plan.  Making an adjustment might take you off the original path, but you’re still moving towards your goal.  You’re just on a better route.  Maybe a faster one, maybe a more efficient one.

It’s only quitting when you stop trying.  It’s only quitting when you completely give up on your plan because you aren’t seeing the results that you want. Making adjustments is just smart.  Pilots do it all the time to get from location to the next.   So keep an eye on your goal off on the horizon. And if you need to, adjust the rudder a little bit to keep heading in the right direction.  Don’t be so married to your plan that you miss the goal entirely.

Hope you’ve had a great day and see you in the next post.

07/30/2018 Weigh In   Leave a comment

Made a little better progress this week.  My weight was 288.2 pounds, down 2 pounds from last week.  My body fat percentage went from 39.7% to 39.5% which is a 1.4 pound difference.  The .6 remaining pounds was most likely water weight. My muscle mass percentage went from 26.2% to 26.4%, which means I stayed pretty steady at 76 pounds muscle mass.

I have to admit that I’m happier about this result for a bad reason.  I was a little lax on exercising this week.  It wasn’t that I didn’t exercise.  Or that I didn’t do a good amount of exercising this week.  Honestly, though, I know I could have done better.  As I get lighter and in better shape there’s no reason why I shouldn’t be exercising longer and more intensely.

On a good note, I am noticing that my heart rate stays lower while I exercise.  This being another reason I know I should be pushing harder.  But it’s also a good sign that I’m getting fitter each day.  Definitely need to get out more and increase my jog time.

Nutrition wise, while I still need to do a better job of tracking on a more consistent basis, I am doing a better job overall of meeting my keto needs while getting more protein in.  I’ve tracked my ketone levels on meals where my protein intake was very high to see the effect and my blood glucose level still stays in the fasted range.  One reading was slightly above 100 mg/dL, but since that’s the top for when you are actually fasted I’m not too worried about that.  Especially since my lowest blood ketone reading was .7 mmol/L. Well into the ketosis range. I may try to squeeze in a little more protein but I don’t want to accidentally overshoot and ruin the results I got this week.  I wanted to be at or below 280 pounds by the time I went back to Bellingham to visit.  As that’s two weeks away I’m pretty sure I won’t make it but I’d still like to be as close to 280 as I can get.

That’s all for this weeks weigh in.  Hopefully the doubling of last weeks weight loss will be a continuing trend.  Or at least if it holds steady it’s due to greater fat loss offset by more muscle mass gains.  On the whole though still moving forward and that’s all that matters.  Take care.

07/23/2018 Weigh In   Leave a comment

The numbers are in, and I’m very happy with them.  I went from 291.2 pounds down to 290.2, so I’m down another pound.  My body fat percentage made me the happiest.  I went from 40.1% last week to 39.7% this week. Doing the math on those percentages I lost 1.6 pounds of body fat. Even though the body fat percentage points I lost didn’t differ significantly from most of my weigh ins, it just feel like I’ve accomplished more going from the 40s to the 30s.

My muscle mass went from 26% last week up to 26.2% this week.  In pounds that’s from 75.7 pounds to 76.0 pounds.  The remaining .3 pounds of gain being water weight gain.  I don’t mind my weight loss being “slowed down” by being offset buy muscle and hydration gains.  Gains in both of those categories help my body work better at reducing the area I want to go down, body fat.

One of the things I learned early on in my readings on Keto was that you have to be careful with protein intake.  That was the understanding at the beginning of the year.  As more and more people go on the keto diet, it gets researched more. One thing they’ve discovered is that the reason for keeping protein intake lower may not be true. It was believed that taking in more protein then your body needs will convert the excess protein to glucose via gluconeogenesis.  New research is suggesting that when you are keto adapted your body won’t need the extra glucose so it won’t convert the protein to glucose in unlimited quantities.  Now I’m not a doctor, but this guy is, so for a better explanation check out this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z1dyhu-VZSs to learn more.  Also, here is an article (https://www.perfectketo.com/gluconeogenesis/) that really breaks it down for you.

Why do I mention this?  I’ve been thinking of increasing my protein intake.  I still don’t track as well as I should but I do know from quick mental math that my ratios are good.  I take in very little carbs and the majority of my calories come from fat.  Based on what I learned from the research I’m wondering if I’m still not putting in enough protein to let my muscles grow optimally.  I have a ketone meter (https://amzn.to/2NDM0sW is my affiliate link) to test daily to see how I’m doing and stop it if the extra protein does kick me out of ketosis.  I’ll keep you informed of how this goes.

That combined with the increasing exercise time and intensity I’ve been managing lately will hopefully kick things back into high gear.  I have three more weigh ins before I head back to Bellingham, WA for a visit and would like it if I’m at or under 280 pounds.  I’m not stressing about this because I know it’s a long shot at this point. But it is a nice “wishful thinking” goal.  The reason is my highest recorded weight was 380 pounds.  I say recorded because after that weigh in I adopted an “ignorance is bliss” attitude towards scales.  I have no idea what my actual highest weight was. It could be 380 pounds as that was my biggest waist size as well.  Who knows?  What I do know is I’d love it if I could go back to Bellingham being able to brag I’m 100 pounds lighter than my heaviest known weight.  Don’t get me wrong, being 90 pounds lighter is still bragging rights territory, but triple digits just sounds more impressive.

That’s this weeks weigh in check in.  Thanks for reading.  I definitely encourage you to follow the links to the article and the video if you haven’t.  It’s great information. I’d appreciate it if you followed the link to the meter as that helps pay the bills.  I’m going to try and do a second post later tonight so if I don’t see you then, then I’ll catch you tomorrow.

Posted 07/24/2018 by senso1970 in Uncategorized

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07/16/18 Weigh In   Leave a comment

So little bit of bad luck this week.  I live in a relatively new neighborhood.  There’s still construction going on all around me, including digging in the ground to run lines.  And the other day one of the companies that was doing that hit the fiber optic line.  So for the past few days I haven’t had internet (or television, although I didn’t mind that as much).  Everything is now back up and running so I can do my weekly update.  And starting tomorrow I’m going to go back to trying to post daily for a week, give or take another internet knockout.

This Monday I weighed in at 291.2 pounds.  This is down 2.4 pounds from last week.  I was really shocked by this because I had moved my day off from keto up to last Tuesday.  I was meeting a friend I hadn’t seen in a long time for lunch and felt it would be easier to find a mutually agreeable place to eat if we weren’t working around my keto requirements.  Usually after a day off from keto my weight goes up.  The fact that it not only didn’t go up but it went down by quite a bit was amazing.  And it was mostly fat.  My body fat percentage went from 40.5% down to 40.1% which means I lost 2.2 pounds in fat and based on the other numbers that stayed the same the other .2 pounds lost had to be water.

At 40.1% I’m just one or two weigh ins from being under 40% body fat.  Being happy about being 40% body fat, or just under, might seem a little odd until you take into account that when I started this journey on the first day of this year I was 52% body fat.  So I’m nearly 12 percentage points lighter then when I started.  And if I make the same drop in the second half of the year I’ll be at around 28% body fat, almost half of what I started.

Looking back over the last week it’s easy to see what the culprit is for this surprise drop.  I’ve been really good about my exercise this week. I’ve added two things that are really speeding the weight loss up.  The first is I started making better use of the dip station I bought. I still can’t push my body weight up yet so what I started doing was locking my arms, picking my feet up off the ground, and then slowly lowering myself until I dropped. I could do this for a couple times before I’d go straight to dropping.   This is good, but last week I decided to add another twist.  When I get to the point where I just drop I switched to locking my arms out and then bring my knees up high as I can and then lower them.  This is giving me a great ab workout, plus tuckers out the arms, strengthening my upper body better.

The other things I started doing last week is going from walking to walking with jogging sprints interspersed along the way.  It’s not a wholesale HIIT workout but it certainly moves in that direction.  And I think the results speak for themselves. Clearly I’m burning more fat during the week then what I was during the previous weeks.  So I’ll be keeping up this practice.  I’m getting better each time, being able to jog a little faster for a little longer on each run.

This wraps up this weeks weigh in.  The next one will be just a few days away as this one got posted late due to the internet outage.  See you again for the next weigh in, and tomorrow for my next daily post.

Mid Year Update   Leave a comment

This month’s weigh in is not just a monthly weigh in, it’s the mid point of the year weigh in.  So this post will focus on the journey so far as opposed to just what’s happened since last month.

When I started this journey on January 1st of this year I weighed in at 352.6 pounds.  My body fat percentage was a whopping 52.0%, my muscle mass percentage was under the 25% minimum the scale would show, as well as my hydration, which was below the 43.0% minimum.  I look back and shake my head at the fact that when I started my keto diet I was more body fat then anything else.  I don’t feel ashamed or get down on myself about it, I just recognize that 52.0% was very bad for me.  And that’s very important.  I’ve made a lot of progress in six months and much of that is due to the fact that I didn’t add to the problem with self recrimination or self doubt.  I simply understood I wasn’t where I wanted to be, looked to where I did want to be, and started moving in that direction feeling good about myself making the choice to be better.  A positive mindset is a huge benefit in a weight loss journey.

So where am I now, six months later. My weigh in was yesterday, 07-02-2018.  I weighed in at 293.0 pounds.  My body fat percentage was 40.3%.  My muscle mass percentage is up to 25.9% and my water percentage is up to 46%.  That means in six months time I’ve lost a total of 59.6 pounds of weight, averaging just under 10 pounds a month.  I like that average.  On January 1st I was carrying 183.4 pounds of body fat, a whole human being.  On this weigh in I’m only carrying 118.1 pounds for a total fat loss of 65.3 pounds.  Unfortunately since I fell below the minimum percentage for both water and muscle mass I can’t calculate how much I’ve changed other then to say that between the two I’ve gained 5.7 pounds.  Considering that fact that I’ve only recently started doing things to build muscle I’m good with that gain.

So even though I fell slightly short of my hopes to be over 60 pounds lost by mid year, and under 40.0% body fat, I feel really great about the progress I’ve made.  I think quibbling over .4 pounds of weight and .3 percentage points of body fat would be silly to do instead of focusing on the great amount of progress I’ve made.

In terms of impact on my life, these are the changes I’ve noticed.  At the beginning of the year I didn’t even try to keep up with my coworkers at the end of the day as we walked out to our cars.  I would be struggling to try, I really couldn’t without their slowing down, and I’d be winded something fierce by the time I got to my vehicle.  Now, I can keep up with them without their slowing down and I can feel that I was pushing myself but I’m just breathing heavier, I’m not winded.

I was wearing 56 inch waist pants when I started (at my largest I wore size 60).  Today it was a hot day in Alabama so I decided to put on the new shorts I bought a few weeks ago.  They’re 48 inch waist shorts.  The fit isn’t perfect but they are wearable and I think a lot of the “fit” issue I had with them revolves more around the fact that my clothes have been extra baggy lately.  So my shorts being a closer fit to the body felt odd.  But it wasn’t like they were at risk of ripping or anything.  I’ve been buying my clothes from the big boy store most my life and like any specialty store the cost of everything is way more expense.  That’s why my clothes are so baggy right now.  I’d ring up a huge bill keeping up as I go along.  I got the shorts at Walmart for under $15.  The important note though is I got them at a regular store.  I’ve gotten small enough I can buy clothes at most places now, which I love.

At the beginning of the year when I got home from work I was done for the day.  Now I do things.  Maybe read, or work on learning a language, or even go back out and do something.  More importantly I’ll exercise at the end of the night.  Even if it’s just to go out on a walk.

On January 1st, starting the day involved me mentally pushing myself to get out of bed after copious use of the snooze alarm and a realization I’d have to get up or I was going to be late.  On my weekends I’d sleep way in if I didn’t have somewhere to be. I’d stumble into the bathroom to get ready.  Lots of coffee to get the engine revving.  But mainly a lot of willpower and not sitting in place for too long out of fear of nodding off.  Now I get up a lot without hitting the snooze.  If I do it’s maybe once or twice.  I get up and get going quick.  By the time I’m done with my shower I’m fully awake and ready for my day.  I get to do a 20 minute meditation every morning now because I’m not afraid I’ll nod off and be late for work.  After the meditation, because I get up so much earlier now, I have time to exercise.  I still have coffee in the morning but now it’s because I get to sit and enjoy my coffee.  But I don’t have to have it to get through the day, and some mornings I don’t have it if I don’t feel like enjoying a coffee. Mainly I start the day strong.

The two biggest changes though are my emotions and my outlook.  Earlier in the post I said that being positive is a huge key to success in weight loss and I did start out with a positive attitude.  The change from then to now is that I had to tell myself back then I was being positive and had to work at keeping a positive mental outlook.  I caught myself regularly worrying and doubting and having other negative thoughts, and I would correct those thoughts.  Today, I have no doubt I will reach my goal.  Today, I’m making decisions about my life, not just in the area of my weight or health, but about career and long term goals that I would never have made before because I had learned to settle because of my weight and health.  I used to believe I had achieved what I could and I should be happy with that.  Now I know that was a lie I told myself because I was scared to change.  Not any more.  I spend a lot of time working on skills to improve myself so that I can do the things I want to do and live the life I want to live.  I smile more often and it’s done naturally not because I’m reminding myself to do so.  I’ve always said I don’t worry about what others think but there was always a nagging voice in the background saying “you kinda do”.  Not sure where he went or what he’s up to now days, but I don’t hear that voice anymore.  I live my life for me and I live it well, and more importantly I live it that way naturally because it’s how I truly feel.

And the best part is I’m only half way there.  On the app I use that captures the data from my scale it shows I’m at 48% of my weight loss goal.  If this is how I feel at a 48% success rate I can only image how wonderful I’m going to feel when I hit 100%.  But you guys won’t have to wonder.  I’ll keep you posted all along the way.  Have a happy 4th of July.