Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Weight Loss Update 2: How Real People Lose Weight

Can you believe it?  It's been eight weeks since I started my exercise program (circuit training, affectionately known here as circuit torture), and changed some dietary habits to lose some of this blubber I've been carrying around for a decade.

Here's my story:  Back in 2002, I weighed 120-125 pounds and was in good shape.  I didn't do any special exercise or dieting, either.  But something happened in that year that caused me to gain 30 pounds without any appreciable changes in diet or habit.  My doctor says I was just getting old (I was 35).  Maybe it was the SlimFasts I was drinking instead of meals that summer because it was too hot to eat.  Whatever, it came on and would not come off.  I did try dieting at that time, but with no luck.  I had every medical test under the sun--finally sparking the "You're just old" comment.  I went to a naturopath.  Nothing worked.  I gave up and settled in with my new size, and gained another 20+ pounds over the decade.

This is me on Jan 25, 2013
This year, I decided I'm tired of being the shape and consistency of a pudding bag.  Even more, I'm tired of getting out of breath going up a flight of stairs or when I lay down at night, which actually scares me some.  I don't care overmuch about the weight, per se, but I hate not fitting anything properly, and not finding anything that doesn't make me feel dumpy when I catch my reflection.  So, if I'm going to be 169, I'll be a fit 169.

I'm not dieting.  It does not work for me, and I don't have that kind of discipline.  Instead, I've cut sodas, desserts, and fast food drastically, and started exercising 5-6 days a week.  I also drink a gallon of water a day.  Two weeks of this past eight, Rob was home on mid-tour leave with the goal of hitting every restaurant and fast food place he's missed for eight months.  Even with looking at the low-cal options, I was taking in way more calories, sodas, and sweets than I had even before I started this regime.  However, if I can't have a little backsliding, then this is not the lifestyle for me.  The only thing I'm staying faithful on is the exercise program.

In the end, I'm pretty happy with the results of the past eight weeks.  I lost body fat, nine pounds, and a couple of inches in the waist.  Some places where I increased inches, I'm seeing muscle instead of wobbly fat, so I don't mind.  Nine pounds is about a pound a week, which is what they say is healthy weight loss for a long run.

15-Jan 8-Mar

weight 169 160
9 lb dec
body fat 38.5 36.6
1.9 dec
chest 38.7 36.8
1.9 dec
bust 41.1 38.2
2.9 dec
waist 39 36.9
2.1 dec
hips 42.8 40.5
2.3 dec
abs 42 39.5
2.5 dec
thigh 22 22.8
.8 inc
calf 15 15.3
.3 inc
bicep 11.6 12
.4 inc
forearm 10 9.8
.2 dec
neck 15 14.2
.8 dec

Here's my photos from yesterday. 

You can actually see some definition in my arms.  Funny thing is, since I started exercising, I don't have nearly as much trouble with carpal tunnel, either.

Please note that I am not posing or sucking in my gut or doing any of those photo tricks to make myself look better.  I'm also using the same shirt.  The idea is to see my progress in an everyday manner.

I post these because I think that the media--from advertising to talk shows--puts a lot of emphasis on quick and extreme results.  So tell me:  does this inspire (or reassure) any of you in your own weight loss efforts?  What are you doing to have a healthier you this year?


phitandphat said...

This is the useful information for those who want to reduce weight.

Anonymous said...

Inspiring. But I literally cant walk that much.

Karina Fabian said...

Thanks for chiming in. Anonymous, I'm not sure why you cannot walk that much, but when I started, I had to stop for a breather every 30 seconds. However, if you physically can't walk, there are a lot of other exercises to try, if you're interested. Grace Bridges, whom I'm writing about tomorrow, explored some of these while recovering form torn ligaments.