Summer fun

Well not just the summer.

2014 has been a pretty good year for fat loss.

I rolled into the year (literally!) at over 90 kg with my clothes all tight and struggling for breath when bending to do my shoe laces (fat gut invading lung space!).

After a fairly consistent effort with just a few slips I just weighed in at 84.0 kg (185 lbs , 13 stone 3 lbs) which is a weight loss of about 10kg (over a stone) in 9 months. not too shabby.

The best news is not the weight of course, its the fact my clothes fit better , I am more lively as my leg dont have to cart so much bulk around and I can bend over long enough to do my shoe laces up without running out of breath.

If I had kept up my fastest rate of weight loss, I would have disappeared by now, but overall I am pleased, and I am motivated to lose the other 10 kgs I don’t want anymore.

The secret? is there is no secret. I ate less, better, food, and I moved more.

How to eat less? only eat natural, straight from the plant, tree or animal stuff all day. If I had a treat it was last thing in the day.

Why? well have you ever tried opening a bag of crisps and only eating one? or opening a bar of choc and having one square? that stuff is designed and made specifically to make us want more. Eating that at the start of the day is a diet disaster its all I want for the rest of the day.

I have also started to do exercise 3 times a day to take advantage of the recovery period fat loss. Nothing major, brisk walk to work, brisk walk at dinner time and something in the evening.

Just this week I got a stand up desk at work. I did mornings standing to introduce it gently. My back was killing before, and it still kills but now its the nice kill of being worked, not the bad ache of lack of use.

I hope to go all day everyday next week. We’ll see…

I’ll keep you posted on progress.

If I hit 80kg in the next month I’m going to buy myself a new camera. I have already chosen the one. Will order it at 81kg, hope to hit 80 by the time it is delivered.

Moving targets

Currently I am 88.6 kg ( 195 lbs, 13 stone 13 lbs)

My initial target is to get under 87kg, as that is the heaviest I have ever been apart from this latest phase.

I remember not so long ago my preliminary target was to get under 70, and then 75, and then 80, and more recently 85. In fairness I guess the 70kg targets were over 5 years ago now.

If this carries on some time soon I could be trying to get below 90kg. For someone who should Weigh 65 kg ( 143 lbs, 10 stone 3 lbs) that’s a lot to carry around. (more than one of my kids weighs)

Funny how things drift over time, and how my expectations go with them. Last year I would have been appalled to weight 87kg, now I would be delighted (temporarily (hopefully)).

After 87, key points are 85, 83 and the magic 80.0 kg (176 lbs, 12 stone 8 lbs) I have spent untold months either weighing these or wishing I did.

I will keep you posted…

Time of year

Its that time of year when thoughts turn to losing the Christmas lard.

I had got down to 83.0 kg (183 lbs , 13 stone 1 lbs) a week or two before the Chrsitmas eatathon. This morning I weighed in at 85.0 kg (187 lbs , 13 stone 5 lbs).

2 kilos /4 pounds doesn’t seem that bad, and is a lot less than it feels in fairness. Anyway its full steam ahead to get rid of that ASAP.

I’ll keep you posted on progress.

Update end of Feb 2009

I finally got to set of scales:

80.4 kg = 177 lbs = 12 stone 9 lbs and 25% body fat.

The 25 is important – 25% and over body fat is one clinical definition of obese. So if I keep going I will soon be un-obese for the first time in years.

I have eased off the effort the last couple of weeks but I hope to get back on this week.

As a matter of interest I walked with a 15 kg rucsac the other day. It felt hard, I felt like I was lumbering, I felt slow and plodding. Somewhat shocking then that is similar to the weight I have lost since Christmas! No wonder I was feeling a bit slow then!

I still have another 10 kilos I’d like to lose – I can’t wait to feel how easy walking and running will be then!

Climate factors

In much of the health debate the focus is on food. References to exercise are vacuous at best.

What they conveniently ignore is the weather and the seasons. In the UK we get a lot of rain. Thats great for some sports but for many its a major turn off. In our winter its dark by 4pm, so any winter activity will need some sort of lighting.

Whilst the government glibly tells us we need 5 sessions of 30 minutes of moderate activity a week to stay healthy, they show no signs of making that realistically possible.

My kids play football on a floodlit ‘all weather pitch’. So far this winter their training has been cancelled 3 times because of the rain, and twice because of frost. Hardly all weather!

I don’t know where the nearest covered venue is, but I can see unless we get more proper weather proof venues the general health of the nation is likely to decline even further.

One option to help with the lighting issue might be to insist companies give staff a 2 hour break during the day to get out and be active. In fairness most places I have worked didn’t care how long we took for dinner as long as we made the time up and the work got done.

For the last few years I have noticed I have made a significant ‘get fit’ effort in the spring, pretty much as soon as the clocks change (next week for us).

Do you think weather is a factor in health/fatness?

Buzzing

Not sure quite what has changed, but for weeks (/months) my exercising has been a bit of a slog. Quite pleasant, but easy to avoid.

Yesterday and today I have done longer sessions and have come back buzzing each time. I’m up to about 15 minutes running and about 40 minutes biking. One possible difference is I am doing them back to back, I go for a run, then jump straight on my bike after. It ends up as not far off a full hour of decent intensity aerobic exercise. I tried it the other way round – ride then run, the run nearly killed me. As riding is easier it makes sense to do that when I’m tired after the run.

I assume something has happened to get the ‘runners high’ to kick in, but the main thing is its a great feeling and I’m hoping I can use it to encourage me out on those dark dreary days. I suspect it is the length of session that gets the endorphins going. I don’t think I could do long enough in any one activity, but combining them seems to work well – lets see what happens tomorrow.

Yesterday I rode to the woods, hid my bike then went for a run. This worked great until I couldn’t find my bike after the run. Predictable of course, I found it eventually, I’ll need to be a little smarter next time!

I’m not worrying about food, just trying to not go daft. We are on holidays for a few days soon though and generally that kills any thought of sensible eating.

Progress to 11 March

The week of obsessive effort followed by 3 weeks recovery didn’t prove too effective. (net result no weight loss for the month)

I’ve changed things quite a bit now, I’m mainly focussing on getting out and doing some exercise. I’m not beating myself up over what I eat but I’m not going mad either. I’m not on the scales everyday either.

I have been out pretty much everyday for the last 10 days or so and it looks like I’ve lost a kilo (2 lbs) or so.

What I am trying to do is focus on the positives – getting out and enjoying a ride or a run (not too easy with some of the crappy weather we have had recently). rather than focus on the negatives like weight and diet. I reckon those things will come in time if I can keep enjoying my exercise.

The weather forecast for tomorrow is very grim so I hope I can drag myself out.

I think just going and enjoying the activity should mean motivation will not be a problem, but we’ll see. In the past I have had feelings of guilt for going out and enjoying a bike ride when there are chores to do or the kids to play with. At some point you have to say I have to do this for my health, thats where I am at now.