Monday, January 10, 2011

Ego Over Matter: Week 2: Back In Touch With Reality

So at the end of two weeks, I currently sit at 249 pounds. This is down 1 pound and is 51 pounds away from my goal of 198 pounds.

Bleh! that about sums it up. Not elation, not frustration, just, bleh! Having done this a number of times, I think I'm becoming both more philosophical and more cynical about it, but also more concrete in I know what I have to do, and I just have to do it. Some things that this week helped put into perspective. There are several maxims I've used over the years, and those maxims still hold.

1. Eat it whole, eat it raw, eat it unprocessed is still good advice. When in doubt, go with fresh, go with whole foods, and eat them as is. Two whole oranges are a lot less calorically dense compared to a glass of orange juice, and they are also a lot more filling :).

2. Steering clear of sodas of any stripe is best, but if one must, go with Diet flavors (even if they are genuinely awful tasting). Other than that, drink at least 64 oz of water every day potentially closer to 1 gallon a day. Your trips to the bathroom increase, but it also helps flush out the other gunk, too (and your skin will thank you, seriously, it will :) ).

3. Getting back into the understanding of what a portion is can be amazing. If in doubt, carry around some measuring cups and see/calculate what you actually eat. You may well be astounded by how much you put away without even thinking about it. Also, read carefully the serving labels. My morning oatmeal baggie is actually two servings (ha ha ha! in who's world?!). Each serving has 100 calories, so each bag actually has 200 calories. I often would put two bags together to make a substantial enough meal. That's 400 calories or 20% of the days calories for a 2,000 calorie day (which if you are on a losing kick is a good goal at 6'2" and 250). That's sobering!

4. If you have to choose between eating less and exercising more, it's great if you can do the latter, but the necessary output to burn 500 calories more a day is a lot more effort than shaving 500 calories a day. Do both and you will be a rock star (as well as create a 1,000 kCal/day deficit, but you may find it makes you really grumpy, too. Still, that's all you really have control over is the amount, and diet control is simpler than expending more energy exercising (provided you're already doing some as it is. If not, get up and go take a walk :) ).

5. Dieting sucks! Yes, I said it. It's not fun, it's kind of a pain, and it's frustrating when you are invited to dinner or are out and about. You can mitigate that fact a little bit, though, by being more prepared, packing your own food wherever possible, and packing the items that are nutrient dense and take up a lot of room w/o adding a lot calorically (back to the whole whole/raw/unprocessed spiel in #1).

So there it is. I met the target for the week and feel utterly underwhelmed. It's still early, though, so let's see if this tortoise approach will actually work better long term.

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