New Vlog and Weigh-In Update: AM I A RUNNER NOW?!?

Hello friends! First off I have to thank everyone who came forward to support me through my rough patch last week. If there’s one thing I know for sure about weight loss it’s that these bad weeks happen. The goal in managing them is having them only be weeks, and not letting them turn into bad months, bad years, or a bad life.

I’m happy to share that I got back on the proverbial horse and since the end of last week my food choices have been solid, I’v felt more in control, and I’ve gotten back into the swing of things with my activity. I’m still not rockin’ the cardio as much as maybe I should, but I’m putting in my best efforts, and that’s all I can really ask of myself!

In fact, last night I broke another personal record: I RAN A WHOLE MILE WITHOUT STOPPING!!! That’s a first, folks! I’m definitely feeling like running isn’t something I can say I “can’t do” any longer. I can run for over ten minutes at a time, and that’s amazing to me! Next goal is to run a 5k. I GOT THIS!

Next up, the weigh-in. I was very curious, this week, to see how my body dealt with my binge episodes and my return to activity. I like how my body approached it 🙂 Last week I weighed in at 186.0 lbs. This morning I weighed in at 182.8 lbs. That’s 3.2 lbs lost this week! Woot! That makes my total just a hair shy of a total of 90 lbs lost.

I’ll leave you with this video update. I talk a little more in it about my recovery from last week. And it’s a much more upbeat video than the last one, lol!

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Welcome to “Onederland”!

I DID IT!!! The last few weeks I’ve been going on and on and ON about a silly number on a scale, but I don’t care if it’s lame because getting under 200 pounds is something I never thought I’d be able to achieve at this stage in my life. AND I FRICKIN’ DID IT!!!

On Friday I hopped on the scale and it read 199.8 lbs, but I saw the digital display weight teeter-tottering around so I wasn’t ready to celebrate just yet. I climbed off, took a big breath in and out, reset the scale, and climbed back on. 199.6 lbs was its stable readout the second time around, and with that, I declared victory. I let out a raucous “Woo hooooo!” and then had to quiet the nerves of my dog, who was startled in the other room (lol!).

You couldn’t wipe the smile off my face!

I was of course eager to purchase my reward – I settled on the Canon Powershot S110. It’s a slightly older model with 24 frames-per-second HD video (it was cheaper, too – bonus!). It took me forever to navigate over to the shopping center, find the Best Buy (it was hidden underground!), pick up the camera and a couple memory cards, travel to another mall across town for another errand, and finally drive home where I could unbox the camera and get the battery charging. If you check out my video above (which I really hope you do because I am quite proud of this particular edit), you’ll see the new camera footage beginning at around the 3-minute mark!

Even after traipsing around (and maybe getting lost at) two malls, I was still at only 6,000 steps. Why am I paying attention to steps? Well, I always try to stay above 5,000 steps per day, but this past Wednesday I began Roni Noone’s #100kSteps Challenge – it’s basically to get 100,000 steps logged in my Fitbit within 7 days. At an average of 14,000+ steps per day, that’s a pretty tall order for me! It would certainly be the most I’ve ever had in a week. I had been kinda slacking off in the steps arena for a bit, so this challenge was a ripe opportunity to kick things back into gear.

I’m pleased to report that I’ve been KILLING IT with the steps so far! Each day, I’ve exceeded my required daily average.

I’ve been working HARD to maintain these step numbers. Dragging myself into the gym for long workouts when I wasn’t feeling it, going on a hike at Saint Edward State Park, parking a quarter mile from any entrance, walking around my living room – even emptying the dishwasher piece by piece instead of stacking types of dishes together (okay, the silverware is done in bulk – let’s not go crazy!). I can’t imagine doing this long term, but I can definitely manage it for a week.

So yeah, things are going well for me right now! The scale and I are taking a little break from our daily morning meet ups and I instead will only be weighing in every Tuesday. The push to Onederland definitely sent me a little loopy with the numbers, and I could use a mental respite from it for a little while. Next goal? Well, I have this challenge I’d like to successfully complete. If I can persist with the good numbers and come in at or over 100,000 steps for the week, I think I’ll pick myself up a teapot with an infuser for brewing loose leaf tea, as I’m quite fond of the new Teavana release of the Oprah Chai Tea.

But as for numbers on the scale, I have no real set goal. You’ll notice in my sidebar that I have an ultimate goal weight of 150 lbs – followed by a few question marks. That’s ‘cuz I don’t know where I wanna ride this train to just yet. I’m going to focus on little goals. Getting into the 180’s, then the 170’s, etc. But trying not to go too crazy about any of it. The important thing is that I’m feeling SO MUCH STRONGER and I have SO MUCH MORE ENERGY now that I’ve lost 70+ pounds from my highest weight. And I have a long way to go, so I know it’s only gonna get better the more I lose.

Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links. That means if you purchase an item that I’ve linked to here, I may receive a small compensation from the seller.

Video Update: Approaching a Barrier – So Close!

In this installment, I talk a little about approaching a numerical “barrier” on the scale, my history with Jenny Craig (where I briefly “blog-drop” the fantastic Kelly at No Thanks To Cake), my need for speed (er, tea), and why I can’t delve too deeply into my thoughts about “The Biggest Loser”. Thanks for watching!

Weigh-In Report for End of Week 18

I’ve just completed my 18th week on the 20/20 Lifestyles Program, and I’m very pleased to report that the scale was nice to me today and I weighed in at 222.4 lbs. That’s a whopping 3.8 lbs loss from last week… Woot! After a 0.4 lbs loss last week I decided to try calorie-cycling to see if that would boost my loss rate. I wouldn’t call it a cut-and-dried proven theory, but I have had a good stroke of luck while cycling between the 900’s and the 1100’s every other day in the past as well. The other tactic I employed was that I reduced my intake of grains and most of my added carbs came from fruit instead. And I didn’t really miss the bread too much, so that’s something to consider when I fall into those brief plateaus.

Feeling pretty good. Had a rough time last week, emotionally, and my team at the club caught on. I received a nice email from my nutritionist shortly thereafter announcing she had left a little pick-me-up for me at the front desk. It was a gift certificate for a free hour-long personalized massage – so nice! I’ll definitely be making use of that soon, as I’m holding a lot of stress in my trapezius area. (Random factoid: “Trapezius” might be my favorite-named muscle!)

Video Update: Finding the Pride

It’s been a rough week, emotionally. Lots of family-related stressors have me feeling down, but I’m persevering and learning that I’m not a lazy good-for-nothing. I give a brief review of Trader Joe’s Peppered Uncured Turkey Bacon (not bad), celebrate my own Super Bowl Sunday victory, and tackle the stepmill for the very first time.

Weekly Update: Too Much About Bikes?

I recorded a video yesterday with my update information, but it ended up being about 40 minutes long. For the sake of posterity and full-disclosure (even though the video makes me cringe) I’ll post it anyways but figured I’d try to pare down the chat with a more succinctly-written (added later: ha ha, yeah right) post.

Tuesday was my weigh-in, and while Monday I posted about my victimization from the scale I got lucky and recorded a 1.2 lbs loss. Sweet, sweet luck! My mood had been soured on Monday, and could have very-well lasted longer into the week, but I’ll be damned if I wasn’t buoyed by that weigh-in. It’s ridiculous, but it’s the truth. The only fact I can draw from this is that WHAT I AM DOING IS WORKING and I need to not sweat the little bumps here and there. And try to not get on the scale at home.

As a probable method of self-soothing, Monday evening – while I was still a sour-puss from the scale – I started giving some more thought to buying a bicycle. I’ve been contemplating a bike purchase since before I started on 20/20 (in the video I figure out the exact moment the idea seeds itself), so it wasn’t a random thought or anything. I’ve had my eye on a certain bike for a little while now, but apart from having  conversation with a guy at a bike shop back in October and hours and hours (and HOURS) of researching all aspects of overweight cycling, I hadn’t taken the steps of actually getting on any bikes. So I decided that I’d take a few hours between appointments on Tuesday to drop into a LBS (local bike shop) to have a look-see.

The shop unfortunately didn’t have any new models in my size to try. More than a bit of a bummer, but I did get a chance to ride around on a 3-year-old hybrid that they kept in their rental fleet. A little note about bikes: there are many types of cycles out there: from leisure-type cruisers, to rugged mountain bikes, to ultra-lightweight racing bikes. For me, the two types I’d been looking at were classic road bikes (with dropbar handles), and hybrids (sporty cycles that typically have flatbar handles). In my mind, I favored the hybrid model as the flatbar handles seemed like they would be easier to command and more comfortable. More on that to come.

One word really sums up that first ride experience: OUCH! Sure, it was great feeling the wind on my face and getting up a speed greater than I can move on my own two feet. It was wonderful. Glorious, even! But I had a literal pain in my ass that was more than I could bear. My sit-bones (ischial tuberosity, if you wanna get all medical-jargonney) just could not handle the pressure.

I thanked the bike shop guy for all his help and drove back to the gym for my final support group meeting and vowed to give another LBS a shot on Wednesday, after my racquetball session. Let’s switch to that for a bit. Racquetball! So much fun. It really doesn’t seem like a workout when you’re running around after a little ball for an hour and laughing from the inevitable comically-missed swings. But I really worked up a sweat, and I’m pretty sure my heart rate got up to the anaerobic levels throughout, even though my monitor was being a little b*tch and not working half the time.

Back to bike-shopping! After my workout session I couldn’t WAIT to get onto the task at hand so I toweled off, figured lunch could wait (as breakfast was ingested immediately before my workout – THANKS SNOOZE BUTTON!), and drove up to Woodinville Bicycle to look at their arsenal of bikes. They happen to carry the brand of bike I had been looking at (that fancy Specialized hybrid I link to above), and in fact had the exact model I wanted on the floor! But after lengthy conversation and all the research, and ultimately, a mind-opening test ride, I decided that a road bike might not be a closed-off option as I had previously suspected.

We had gone out and tested three bikes: a more entry-level hybrid, a mid-level aluminum road bike with the same frame geometry as the fancy-schmancy hybrid I had eyed, and a carbon version of the same road bike. First, the hybrid: ouch. Again! My sits were still sore from the previous day, but this more upright ride didn’t do my backside any favors. A few laps and I was ready to try anything else, even if it was a scary road bike! I’ve ridden dropbars before – back when I was in junior high! I didn’t think positioning like that would be at all good for my iffy lower back. But lo and behold, after nervously getting on the bike and starting to ride, the one overwhelming sense I had was: OMG MY BUTT DOESN’T HURT AS MUCH! I instantly felt better about riding and could focus, instead of on my ass, on more important things, like steering, and braking.

We then switched from the aluminum road bike (the Specialized Dolce Elite Compact) to the carbon Specialized Ruby, and I didn’t feel as much as a difference as I thought I would. The difference in weight is about a pound or two, according to the shop guy, but I couldn’t feel it. And the price difference was something on the order of $700. And the Dolce *was* in my favorite color. Hello! I’m lame like that – I ain’t to proud to admit that aesthetics have a lot to do with how much I like a bike. So I bit the bullet and walked out the door with a brand new road bicycle. I henceforth shall call her Gertie:

My bike!

Isn’t she pretty? I think so! To get her home we had to take off the quick release wheels to fit into the back of my MINI, and the shop guy gave me a rushed demo on removal and replacement. Though he didn’t demonstrate putting the rear wheel back on, which turns out is the most complicated part. So I spent roughly an hour at home trying to figure out how to get it back on the bike. I still don’t know how I managed to get it back on, but when I go back to have my rack fitted, I’ll make sure he runs me through the process until I’m 100%.

I’ve managed a couple rides at home so far, and while there was an initial comparative sense of comfort on the bike seat, I’ve since discovered that riding is still no walk in the park on my behind. My sit bones still aren’t happy and I’m finding I can’t get very far without feeling some real pain. I have to get that figured out, as while I feel like I have the strength to go additional miles, my derriere just can’t tolerate it. I’ve read that gets better with time and mileage, and the salesman told me to give it a little while to see if I get used to it, but so far it’s rather unpleasant. I still need to get the full-on customized bike fit the shop offers, and I’m making notes about what is and isn’t comfy on the bike, so perhaps that will help. Another help will be buying some padded cycling shorts. Not sure how much they’ll help, but I’ll take every little assistance I can get. Though I’ll likely be wearing them under my pants. You won’t see me sporting them by themselves any time soon, for the love of humanity!

As a final aside, the bike shop was a little understaffed on Wednesday, and during one of my wait breaks I perused the latest issue of Bicycling Magazine which was on display. The cover story just so happened to be about riding for weight loss, which I found to be very timely and inspiring. The mag offers many articles online about cycling-related nutrition and weight loss, with some great success stories. So serendipitous!

In a future post, I’ll talk more about my thoughts on bike riding for fitness, and my related goals. But I’m thrilled to have finally taken the step to buy a bike and hope to make a go of it! For the masochists out there, I’ve embedded the full-length video below.