Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Documenting It

So today is the 15th day of the new year. For fifteen days I have been dieting and exercising, on a mission to lose 25 lbs. Fifteen days, for me, is a very. long. time!  Given the success I've seen, not just on the scale, but mentally, I thought it would be wise to write down exactly what I'm doing so I can acknowledge what is working and see why it is. There's a lot, so bear with me.  Here goes:
  • I have a designated "workout calendar" in my basement (where all my exercise stuff is). Each day that I exercise, I write down my weight that day, what time I start (and what time I finish), what exercises I do, and then give myself a sticker for the day! (Only 1 day missed so far this month!)

  • I log my food and exercise on My Fitness Pal. If you want to friend me there, I'm tnt0617, and you'll be able to see what I'm eating and what I'm doing for exercise. Logging my food has helped me, on several occasions, keep a few bad choices from turning into a slippery slope of horrible choices.
  • I don't take my phone or laptop to bed. (This was a new year's resolution, actually.) This helps me go to sleep earlier because I'm not distracted by FB posts or comments, and I'm not tempted to google *that thing* I just thought of before turning out the lights.
  • I set my alarm for 5:15am. Some mornings I wake up early, some mornings I don't. But not having my phone is incentive to get out of bed because then I (a facebook addict) can go downstairs and check my notifications. I can easily walk and facebook at the same time, and once I'm going, it's easier to get into a real workout. And working out first thing in the morning is really the BEST time to work out. I don't have the kids bugging me and it gets it over & done with before the rest of the day gets a hold on me.
  • I have cut out/limited gluten and dairy. I've been more strict with the gluten than the dairy, and if I had a serious food allergy, I'd have to be even more strict than I have been, BUT for the most part, I've avoided both. This is how I've avoided 99% of the junk food pitfalls that normally get me.
  • I joined Dr. Lou's Weight Loss Challenge in Portland. This year it included a "bioelectrical impedance analysis". I don't have too much to say about it yet, but basically, it looks like a bunch of info that tells you more than just the number on the scale  I'm going to a class tonight which will dissect the info for us, so stay tuned. Knowledge is power, folks. :)
  • I started a Facebook group called "Skinny in 2013" for myself a few like-minded ladies who want to make this the year we lose our extra weight. "'Healthy' is nice, but 'skinny' is really what we want." (Not that any of us will sacrifice health to lose weight, but a healthy lifestyle doesn't particularly motivate any of us. We want to look good in our jeans!)
  • I rejoined a facebook group belonging to my fitness expert friend Laurel. Each month, members post their goal number of workouts planned. Then, through the days, each member posts their workouts and what number they're up to - trying to meet or exceed the monthly goal they've set for themselves.
  • I joined another facebook group that, so far, hasn't been particularly helpful, but it's another element of encouragement/motivation. It's a group started by Toni Anderson, and she is the reason for my interest. Talk about motivating, look at this!!
    (And she has 7 kids!)
  • I weigh myself every day. First thing in the morning, I get out of bed, go potty, and hop on the scale. I record my weight on a chart I taped to the inside of my medicine cabinet. It has a space for every day this year. I did that so I wouldn't have a specific goal date looming in front of me. Some people are motivated by having a specific goal date. Not me. It's like driving near a cliff and watching the cliff and then driving off the cliff. But weighing every day does help me stay on track. I'm aware that the body's weight can fluctuate up and down for various unknown reasons, but I'm also aware that if I have 4 margaritas, I won't be able to hide them from the scale for long. I depend on the scale's daily feedback to keep me on task.
  • I joined an email group of women who are preparing to run the Beach to Beacon 10K this year. I ran the race for the first time last year. I had not properly trained for it, and though I was able to run the entire distance (1:06:43, thankyouverymuch!), I felt like dying the rest of that day, complete with flu-like symptoms.  I would like my body to be more prepared for it this year - - and I'd like to complete it in less than an hour.  So, in the email group, each Sunday, we email everyone what our workouts were for the previous week. It's a place for encouragement or questions or whatever, but mostly, it's just another level of accountability.
  • I made myself 2 big pots of soup and a big pot of chili, dished them out into single-serve dishes, and froze half of them. The other half I put in the fridge so I have them to grab for a quick meal. Having healthy food at-the-ready is KEY for me!  Here are links to the recipes: (1) PT Motivation Booster Soup, (2) Bean & Kale Soup, and (3) Sweet Potato Chili.
  • For exercises, I've started the couch-to-5k program again (I've done it several times, but I think I've only completed it once before!). I do that on Mon/Wed/Fri.  On Sun/Tue/Thu, I do a session of JJ Virgin's 4x4 workouts. I bought her dvd's, so I have 8different workouts to choose from. I use Saturday as either a makeup day (if I'm off a day in the week) or do the elliptical or some wii fit games or whatever. I also throw in a mile walk just about every day (because I can do it while cruising facebook!)  I've started adding inclines to the treadmill setting and either wearing ankle weights or carrying hand weights to add extra resistance.
  • I've watched all of these videos. Honestly, anything that comes from PEERtrainer and/or JJ Virgin is solid gold. Listen to what they say. It's all such great info!!
  • Speaking of solid gold, I watched this video last week. It really hit home for me. If you want to reach your goals, do it! Don't convince yourself you're "fine" not achieving them! Take this advice from Mel Robbins!

Hmmm. I guess that's all of it. As I suspected, there is a LOT here. No wonder my housework is suffering. It is a full-time job staying on top of this stuff.  But for the first time in a long time, I'm doing it.  I'm taking making the time to exercise and focus on my goals. And it's working. Since January 1st, I have lost 6 lbs. I still have 19 to go to reach my goal, but I'm confident I'll reach it THIS YEAR!!
I'm not sharing this info to brag - I wouldn't set myself up for imminent failure like that! - but to help anyone who may be struggling.  Trust me... if I had my act together, I wouldn't need all these tips, tricks, and tools to keep me going. We're all in this mess together! If any of these ideas sound like they may help you, please feel free to copy me! Helping others motivates me!


  1. You have given yourself some excellent tools with good accountability! Great job on your weight loss so far. I believe you're going to reach your goal and then some. Way to go!

    1. Thank you for your nice words, Tracy!