Monday, January 3, 2011

EGO OVER MATTER: Week 1: Getting Our Bearings

To those who know me, as usual, this is not a New Year's Resolution. I do not make those; I believe a goal is good enough to start any day and every day, so I actually started this on December 27th, 2010.

Week 1: The Truth Shall Set You Free

So here is some truth. I weigh 250 pounds at 6'2" of height. Now, some might say, oh that's not so bad for a guy in his mid 40's. True, but in 2007 I went from 242 to 190. I dropped 52 pounds in 26 weeks, averaging two pounds a week without ceasing (and often doing 3 or 4 pounds a week at a clip). The net result was that I looked great for about a year, got totally burned out on dieting, joined a gym so I could build some muscle again, ate like a horse to build up, then stopped going to the gym in the Summer of 2009. Still kept eating as I was accustomed to. Have a fairly nice amount of muscle still, but it's marred considerably by the extra fat weight I'm carrying. Grrr!!!!

After dropping to 190#, I had lost the chronic back pain that had plagued me for several years. Sadly, it's back (no pun intended) and it irritates me considerably. I'd like to see it go away again.

When I dropped to 190#, I stopped snoring. Seriously. With the weight coming back, so has the snoring, and frequently my getting up to go sleep somewhere else so Christina can have a good nights sleep. That's a drag, since I happen to like  my bed and I hate the fact that I'm depriving someone else of good sleep. Plus, I had vanquished it, so I know I can do it again.

Here's another truth. I lost 52 pounds in 26 weeks in 2007. I know it is possible, I know I can do it, and I know I can do it without tearing myself to shreds in the process. This time around, I'm not going to be impatient, and I'm going to allow my body to acclimate more naturally so that I can make it a lifestyle change I can live with. The change in 2007 was dramatic, it was amazing, but in many ways, I set myself up to fail after I met my goal. What then? So my goals will have to be a little more concrete this time, and emphasize some good long term reasons to lose the weight:

1. I hate the back pain. I want it to go away.
2. I hate that my snoring is keeping my wife up at night, and that it may be pointing to sleep apnea that may shorten my life if I don't do something about it.
3. 38" waistline. Need I say more?!
4. My mom was recently diagnosed with Diabetes. Granted, she's 70, and later in life stuff like this happens. But I also know that this can be genetic, so if my mom's got it now, I could develop it later, unless I change tactics.
5. I'm sick and tired of being sick and tired, or put more succinctly... I'VE HAD IT!!! (In my best Les Brown / Dave Ramsey imitation :) ).

Since I believe wholeheartedly in public flagellation to accomplish goals, that's exactly why these pages exist. Check in with me each Monday and see how we roll. Good or bad, it will be posted here for all to see.


DiscoveredTester said...

Yeah, Last year I lost 60 pounds ad one point. During the stress of my wife's preganancy, with having to run back and forth 2 hours to the doc, I came close to eclipsing the three hundred pound mark. I worked, and started watching my portions etc, and I slimmed down to 240s. Problem was later in the year I was traveling so much that exercise became difficult and I ganed back 25 of it. I'd love to get down to 215-180, so I'm curious Mark, What did you do that made a difference in your life? Was it hiking, running?

Michael Larsen said...

Truth be told, there was a number of things I was doing. Key to it was that I made a regular walk from my office up to Telegraph Hill (typically to the base of Coit Tower) and back. That round trip took me about 40 minutes (traffic lights included, and had a vertical ride of about 450 feet. Not a lot in the grand scheme of things, but enough to be noticeable.

Another thing I did was become very much a fan of "eat it whole, eat it raw, eat it unprocessed" wherever possible, and when not possible, I focused on having a lot of frozen vegetables and a lot of hot sauce (great combination there, btw). Really, though, the prime motivator in 2007 was the fact that I chronicled it on Facebook, which had friends from just about every walk of life I was part of. That meant my Scout friends, mu music scene friends, my church friends, and my neighborhood friends, pretty much everyone I knew saw me make this line in the sand and publicly report on it every week. Believe me, that level of self-induced "peer pressure" and accountability partnership was huge. Now I want to do the same thing, only this time I want to do it in a way that will encourage me to keep going after I meet the goal :).

Dionne said...

Here's my truth: I'm 5'2" and 175 pounds. It slowly crawled up to about 195 about 10 years ago with a bad bout of PPD after Son3's extremely stressful beginning. I know exactly what happened: my portion sizes got bigger, I stopped eating enough vegetables and late night snacking became a habit.

On the positive side, I'm not a yo-yo dieter, and I've maintained my 175 since the birth of child #5 four years ago. So basically I want to take this off ONCE, and slowly. To do that I need to regain the old habits I had before (and yes, I understand that it's far harder to maintain than it is to lose. I've finally realized that I'll probably need to track my food intake for the next five years to make it stick long-term. That's one of the things done by that successful 5%)

Motivation for losing:
1) 50 extra pounds is hard on my body, especially my lower back and knees.
2) As a thrift-store/consignment hound, clothing in a size 16/18 is slim pickings. I'm tired of seeing great finds in a size 8 that I'd wear in a heartbeat if they fit.
3) Like you, I need more energy. I'm tired of being tired all the time.
4) I don't feel very feminine right now. I want that back.

January's goals: walk the dog everyday, drink 8 glasses of water, rise early. February: weight lifting!

Thanks for doing this, Michael. You're more of an inspiration than you know.