What a week. Yet another week of no formal workouts, only a super active lifestyle.
Monday- 40km mountain bike ride
Tuesday- Long, easy walk
Wednesday- 1hr medium hike plus another hour or more of walking
Thursday- Low key. Just rested and walked into town a few times
Friday- Hard 5 hour hike
Saturday- Rest. Didn’t even leave the hostel. Took a nap and did my laundry instead.
Sunday-Medium 3 hour hike
Though there were no official workouts, I was very active. Today I am finally taking a break and totally relaxing. I went into town to have a coffee, plan my next few days and catch up on blogging.
Diet: My diet has been really good. Only a little bit of treats and sweets have crept in. I enjoyed a small pizza on the day of my hard hike, plus a cinnamon roll and a chocolate chip cookie or two throughout the rest of the week. Oh and a beer. Over 7 days that’s not too bad though. Calorie wise I’ve been all over the place as a 40km bike ride burns over 1000 calories, as does a 5 hour hike. I’ve been very happy with my diet this week.
Weight: Down again. But my weight has been fluctuating far more this week than normal, probably because of the long days of hiking/ biking. I was in the upper 148s, then dropped to low 147s, then up back to mid 148s, now back at 147.4 this morning. So I don’t know, I’ll go with the 147.4, which is a 1.2lb loss. I think this number is a touch low though. Overall that is a 7.2lb loss over 8 weeks. Woot! I’m pretty happy with that.
My only real concern is that I may be losing muscle, mainly in my upper body. Everything I’ve been doing is lower body focused, so it’s a legitimate concern and I’m not sure what to do about it, if anything. I’m not sure if I care enough to do anything about it. We’ll see.
Besides that, things are going well. I think I’m still losing, though with all the fluctuations last week I can’t be sure. But! I certainly feel more comfortable in my body. So this is a big win!
Last week was pretty good. I spent the first half of the week in Dunedin, then made my way west to Te Anau, Doubtful Sound, Queenstown and Wanaka.
Workouts- I don’t think I did a proper workout this entire week. I’ve been very active but at no point did I do a real workout. Hmmmm….interesting.
Monday- Rest. I went to the library and went into town but did not do much else as I had lifted the previous day.
Tuesday- I walked and hiked like an insane person. 2hrs and 10 minutes of walking plus about 30 minutes of hiking. And it was hot. It was totally worth it though. I went to an amazing beach.
Wednesday- Travel day to Te Anau. I walked 40 minutes with my gian backpack and then walked around Te Anau for a bit. Then ate 6 cookies while drinking tea because I hated my hostel and needed something comforting. I don’t regret that.
Thursday- it rained all day. I used the day to do my laundry ($5 total for a wash and dry!) and get packed up as I was going on a cruise the following day. That night I did go on an hour walk around parts of the lake.
Friday- I went on an overnight cuise to Doubtful Sound. I tried to be as active as possible running up and down the stairs on the boat, going kayaking and jumping off the boat into the water about half a dozen times.
Saturday- I got up early and had a real workout planned, but it was pouring outside so I did a modified 100s workout inside the boat. 100 squats, 100 walking lunges, 100 dips, 100 calf raises, 50 V-ups, 50 plank jacks and 50 pushups. I did work up a sweat so I think it was successful. That night I was in Queenstown and went on an hour or so walk through the city and botanic gardens.
Sunday- I walked a boatload around Wanaka. It is stunning. I probably walked a total of 90 minutes.
Diet- I’m eating a lot of sweets, but also a boatload of vegetables, fruit, yogurt and eggs. I’ve been craving egg sandwiches like mad. Wheat toast, maybe some cheese, tomato and perhaps some avocado. Delicious. One time I had an egg sandwih with cheese and raspberry jam. Who would have thought that’d be good? Certainly not me. It was delicious though.
On the sweets front it’s mostly been chocolate and cookies. It took me a week to eat a big chocolate peanut butter bar and 6 days to finish 20 ginger snaps. Not long enough, though it could have been a lot worse.
On the cruise I ate a lot for dinner. A lot. But I wasn’t stuffed. Full and satisfied but not Thanksgiving sort of stuffed. Plus I had real dessert, cheesecake, chocolate cake, warm fruit crumble and pavlova. It was just a sliver of all those things but that still adds up. The food was so good. So so good. I never eat that well when I cook for myself. Plus it was all included in the price so I indulged.
Imagine my shock when the scale says I’m still losing weight. I am currently 148.6lbs, that is a loss of 6.0lbs in 7 weeks. It makes me think that I was for sure not eating enough for my level of activity when I first arrived in NZ. Now I’ve been averaging 1750 calories per day, but not really working out at all and I’m losing weight rather quickly. A little too quickly probably. But I don’t feel deprived or anything. So this is good. I’m still going to try and eat a bit more, perhaps averaging 1800 calories per day, or more if I do a particularly long hike or bike ride or workout. We’ll see.
Week 5 was my second week in Wellington. As mentioned in my previous post I had joined a gym and was able to work out consitently, in addition to gymnastics. The final week I was there was pretty good workout wise. Monday I took a core class which was meh, then went to gymnastics practice. Tuesday I had a morning lifting session then went to gymnastics. This was a mistake. Gymnastics was terrible. My body was so tired that I could not get anything accomplished. Wednesday I took Zumba, which was awesome. I’ve always wanted to try Zumba but never had. Thursday I was supposed to lift and go to gymastics but I was way too tired. I just hung around the hostel most of the day, plus I got a second hole in my ears. Friday I had a lifting session, as well as Saturday, but I’m pretty sure they were abbreviated workouts. Looking back, I think I did too much. My body was really tired. I would have been better served spacing my workouts out. There are, of course, complicating factors, mostly that I’m preparing for a competition. Well, live and learn.
Diet wise I did pretty well that week. I was walking a lot less but still consuimg more than I should have been. In about 2 days though, my body adjusted and I wasn’t as hungry. Since I went to a fruit and vegetable market on Sunday I was eating tons of veggies the whole week. I averaged about 1770 calories per day. Pretty good.
I was hoping for a 1lb loss. This did not happen. On Monday, when I do my weigh-in, I was 151.4, which is down 0.2 from the previous week. I’m disappointed with that. In the interest of full disclosure, I should say that I started my period on Monday. Usually that adds about 1lb of water weight. However, by Wednesday I was weighing 152.4lbs, so I’m guessing the 151.4lb was accurate.
I’m so frustrated. I’m not sure what else I can do here, except eat less. But consuming 1770 calories and working out 4-5 days a week seems like I should be losing. Plus I’m hesitant to eat too much less than 1700 cals/ day. I’ve gone down to 1450-1550 per day and I lost weight really fast, but that was far too little, especially when my BMR is 1400. It is unreasonable and unhealthy to only eat 1500 cals per day when I’m working out this much. I’ll at least wait until my period is over before I make any drastic changes, to see where I actually am.
Plus on Monday I am also going to measure myself for the first time in almost a month. We’ll see what that brings. If I’ve lost a bunch of inches then I’ll feel better about the scale not moving. If not, well then there will some serious reassessment of everything.
This week has been decent. Monday I lifted then I drank a boatload. It was the superbowl and I met a guy in a bar and he insisted on buying me a ton of drinks. Being a cheap backpacker I of course said yes. Tuesday I went to gymnastics practice. It was probably the worst gym I’ve ever worked out in, but I got a surprisngly large amount accomplished. Wednesday I was feeling tired. So freaking tired. I woke up, ate breakfast then promptly went back to bed for 3 hours. The whole day I felt fatigued and sliggish so I canceled my workout. Thursday morning I went to the gym but it ended up being closed because today is a public holiday. Rats! At least there was gymastics that night. It was my last practice before the masters games and it went all right. Friday I went to the gym to do a quick workout, more to just move around and get my heart rate up a bit. I did a simple 10-1 workout of jump squats, med ball twist and plank ups. Then I ran through my beam routine a few times on the mats there. Saturday was the meet, which is like an incredibly easy practice. Not even a practice. And Sunday I did a full lifting session.
Today is Monday and I am finally taking the day off workout wise. I’m still walking a boatload today, though. Anyway, there’s good news! Firstly, I’m down to 150lbs exactly! That’s an overall loss of 4.6lbs in 6 weeks.
Secondly, I measured myself today, just shy of 4 weeks, closer to 3.5 weeks, but I wanted to keep to a Monday schedule for these things. So current stats- here goes.
Current Weight: 150.0 lbs
Waist: 29″ (-1.5″)
Hips: 38.5″ (-1.5″)
Chest: 34″ (-1″)
Bust: 37.5″ (no change; this supposedly makes me like a C cup. Laughable)
Thigh: 23.5″ (-0.5″)
Bicep: 13″ (no change)
Calf: 14.5″ (-0.5″)
For emphasis: measuring yourself is hard. I measured everything at least twice, some three times just to make sure I was accurate. Who knows though. Regardless, there is a downward trend in most things. Now I just need to take some photos. Probs not going to post them but it’d be nice for comparisons sake.
Overall I’m really happy! I had some doubts that I’d be able to make progress while traveling, given my budget, lack of regular gym access, moving around etc. It’s a little slower going than I anticipated but it’s been a much healthier experience this time. I’m for sure eating enough, lots of veggies, lots of variety, even a boatload of chocolate and some cake. I don’t have major cravings or feel like I’m depriving myself. I’m even drinking. I was a little frustrated last week but the numbers today (both weight and measurements) have restored my faith in my plan.
I promised myself I’d do something when I lost the first 5 lbs. I’m quite close to that but I have no idea what I’ll do. Most likely it’ll happen sometime late this week, when I’ll be on an overnight cruise. Maybe I’ll buy some jewelery. Nothing fancy, but something to remember NZ by I haven’t bought anything like that. And one of my favorite things I bought in Argentina was a pair of earrings. We’ll see.
I actually wrote the week 3 recap on time but did not post it as I was on a plane back to New Zealand. It is below.
Oh Week 3. I had intentions of keeping my calories in check but that was tough and ultimately, not terribly successful.
Monday I ate just over 2000 calories, but I also had 2 solid workouts that day, fitness class in the morning then gymnastics practice in the evening. I ate well during the day so I was surprised that I was starving after gymnastics practice. We went to dinner after practice and I tried to eat reasonably. I had 1/2 of a turkey sandwich with zucchini.
Tuesday I slept through my alarm so I did not end up working out, but I was still okay on calories, even with the pizza for dinner. I totaled about 1630 for the day.
Wednesday was also okay. I worked out in the morning and then walked for about 30 minutes in the afternoon. Though I totaled about 1870 for the day I feel that is appropriate.
Thursday is where it started to go downhill. I did not workout but I still consumed about 1770 calories. This is the day I made dinner and dessert for my mom. In reality I think consumed a bit more than that. I made rice pudding for dessert and I really have no idea how many calories were in it. Plus I was snacking on high calorie nuts throughout the day. I am pretty sure I accounted for all of them but I could have missed some.
Friday was worse. Again, I did not workout and I totaled 1830 calories. I was home all day, running up and down the stairs and all around the house. I also had an ice cream sundae with one of my favorite flavors ever, Peppermint. Plus it was basically the last meal/ dessert that I was going to eat at home. Yes I’m rationalizing.
Saturday has also been tough. I had breakfast at home, which was pretty good. Then I had lunch and a snack on the plane. It’s only 8:30pm and I’m already at 1530 calories. And of course there is no working out today. I am traveling though, like on a 14hr flight currently, so it’s hard. I did pace up and down the terminal for as long as possible before I got on the plane.
I’ll report my weekly weigh-in today because come Tuesday I have no idea what the scale will say. At least I will have had a good nights sleep and a good home cooked meal by then but I will have traveled for 36 hrs, arriving in Wellington probably only 18 hours before I would typically weigh-in.
Currently I am 152.2 lbs, which is down 2.4 lbs in just under 3 weeks. This is progress at least. I’m still consuming too much on days I don’t workout. This seems to be my biggest issue. I can usually stay within my calorie range on days I workout, but on days I don’t I have a hard time. This could be a lifestyle issue, at least right now. When I don’t workout I tend to be really lazy and stay inside during the day. This give me easy access to snacks and excess calories. Once I’m traveling again, this should resolve. I am typically out of the hostel and either going on a hike, walking around a city, working out, doing gymnastics etc virtually every day. Every 3-4 days or so I’ll take a day where I ‘catch up’ on email, blogs, laundry, errands etc and those day I’m a bit more lazy but I’m still outside the hostel, usually at a cafe. And since I’m cheap and don’t eat out, I won’t be over eating then. We’ll see. In the first 6 weeks I was in New Zealand, when I was traveling all over, I’m pretty sure I lost weight.
There’s not much I can do except my best. That means committing to working out 4 days a week, as in a serious workout. Either crossfit, lifting, gymnastics or one of my own workouts. The other 2 days I better do something active, whether that means going on a hike or walking all around a city, it doesn’t matter, as long as I am off my butt and moving. Then 1 day a week I’ll allow myself to chill out in a hostel and do nothing, if I want. That might mean reading and drinking tea all day, or going to a movie, or watching a movie at the hostel or anything I want. Based on my pervious experience traveling, this is perfectly attainable for New Zealand.
My first week in Wellington might be tough as I’ll arrive seriously jet lagged and sleep deprived but I’ll do my best.
Now on to last week, which was week 4.
I worked out a fair amount- 2 gymnastics workouts and 1 lifting session. Plus my days were full of walking- I probably averaged 4-5 miles a day. I’m also drinking a lot more water. I bring my water bottle with me everywhere I go and have to refill it multiple times per day. I’m not the best when it comes to hydration so this is progress.
Eating wise I’ve been decent. I’d give it a B+. I’ve been planning my meals and eating lots of fruit and veggies. On Sunday I went to a fruit and vegetable market to stock up for the week. Best part? It was cheap (relatively, of course). I’m crazy excited about it. On the downside, I brought chocolate from home and ate A LOT of it the first few days I was here. Now it’s gone and has not been replaced. I also had a midweek slip up where I ate a boatload of chocolate cake and a slice of pizza. This is not terrible terrible, but it was 1am and I only ate it because it was there. I should have walked right by it, brushed my teeth and went to bed. Obviously that did not happen. I’m over it now but you can believe that I mentally beat myself up about it for a while. I should be kinder to myself.
Calorie wise I’ve been averaging 2000/ day, which seems like a lot but with all the walking plus workouts I’m still losing weight. I have to keep reminding myself that the goal is to eat as much as possible and still lose 1lb per week- not lose weight as fast as possible. For the 7 days that I’ve been here my 5 day moving average for my weight has been decreasing steadily. I’ve been doing less walking these last 3 days so my calories should decrease. They haven’t really. We’ll see.
Anyway, numbers time. It’s been 4 weeks and I’ve lost 3 lbs. My current weight is 151.6 lbs. The second week I didn’t lose anything, which means in the past 2 weeks I’ve lost 2 lbs. Right on track!
Overall this is perfect. I’m still eating a lot (relatively, of course) and losing weight, which is my goal. It just feels so slow. But! I know that this is the best possible way to do it. I just need to remember my #1 goal: Eat as much as possible and still lose weight. Anything else is detrimental in the long run.
Well this past week was much more frustrating.
TMI: I got my period on Tuesday last week. I know from tracking my weight for a year that my period adds about 1-3 lbs in water weight. It also makes me want to eat EVERYTHING I see. In the past 5 of 7 days I’ve eaten close to 2000 calories per day, which I think is too much. I am working out almost everyday, but the rest of my day isn’t very active. If I were out and about and walking everywhere, then maybe 2000 would be okay. But given my daily life, I think it’s too much.
This all means that in the last 2 weeks I’ve lost 1lb, but I think that 1lb came from the first week. The second week was basically a wash; no gain, but no loss either. I’ve also been working out too much. Last week I completed 9 workouts in 8 days, which is WAY too much. This morning I wanted to take class at 6am. I set my alarm for 5:15am and then I woke up at 6:30am. I can only assume my alarm went off and I shut it off without waking up. It’s probably for the best as my body really needs a rest day.
Let’s focus on some good things. I’m getting a better idea of how many calories I need to consume. I know that 1400-1500 is too few and leaves me very hungry. I know that 2000 is too much if I want to lose weight (given my current level of activity). I’m guessing 1700-1800 is probably a good number for me.
In other good news, I had a really good gymnastics practice last night. I vaulted for the first time in 10 days and my timers felt really good. Vault finally feels decent. On bars, I connected kips in a row! Amazing. And perhaps the best part was tumbling. It finally felt good, like it wasn’t a struggle. I was shocked. This was my 9th workout in 8 days and my second workout of the day. My legs felt tired but my tumbling felt really good. Color me surprised.
In an effort to stay on track, I think I’ll make some healthy habit goals once a week. Last week I was not great with calories to this week I am going to focus on that.
Healthy Habit Goal for this week: Aim for 1750-1800 on days I workout and 1550 on days I do not. This will be tough because I’ll be traveling for close to 36 hours starting Saturday afternoon but I’ll do my best.
Anyway, current stats (Oh I also got my measuring tape so I’ll note some measurements)
- Weight: 153.6 lbs
- Waist: 30.5″
- Hips: 40″
- Chest: 35″ I got everything from 34- 36
- Bust: 37.5″ I got everything from 36 to 39.
- Thigh: 24″
- Calf: 15″
- Bicep: 13″
Thoughts: Eeeek. That’s rough. Also? Measuring yourself is hard. I did most measurements in triplicate just to be sure and I bet some of them are still off. Mostly my chest and bust measurements. Those I got all different numbers, so I just went with an average. According to this I’d be almost a C cup, but that’s ridiculous. I’m closer to an A/B. Well anyway, I’ll probably only do the measurement once a month.
Maybe, when I get over myself, I will post a photo.
For the past week I’ve been tracking my calories and my weight everyday (except NYE when far too many alcoholic beverages were consumed). Things are going okay. I am for sure eating nutritiously, which is good. Lots of veggies, eggs, lentils, dried fruit, spinach, beans etc. Not a lot of yogurt (read none) or fresh fruit (also none), but that is only because I haven’t been grocery shopping. My mother sent me back to Boston with a lot of good food from home so I’ve been trying my best to eat that and not buy anything else until it’s gone.
I’m definitely not eating too much, in fact, I think I might be eating too little. Saturday morning at my workout I felt awful. I was tired and slow and my stomach was cramping up. It was bad. There are probably a lot of factors, including 3 days off, not sleeping well, not being adequately hydrated and not eating a big enough breakfast. 1 hr after that I went to gymnastics practice and felt completely fine so who knows? I did drink water and eat a Luna bar between those workouts, plus the gymnastics workout while productive, wasn’t as intense as the morning workout. I’ll see how I feel in my workouts over the next few days.
Later that day though I was ravenous. Every 2 hours I felt hungry, which for me usually means I’m not eating enough. I can typically go 4 hours between meals. I don’t think it was bored eating as I wanted real food. Not sweets or peanut butter or anything, but real whole foods. Typically that’s how I know if I’m just bored or legitimately hungry. Do I want a cookie? Peanut butter? or if I had veggies as an option would I eat that? At like 9pm I had half an avocado smeared on an herb rubbed pita bread. Overall I ate about 1900 calories. Too much? Don’t know but I don’t think so.
Though today is 1 week exactly since I started tracking my weight and calories, I think I’ll do a weekly weigh-in on Monday or Tuesday. That works better for my schedule right now. So I’ll report back in a day or two with my weight. Tomorrow I should be getting my measuring tape so I can do some measurements as well.
And that’s that. I’d consider week 1 a success.
It’s been 2 years since I embarked on my healthy living goal. And my oh my what a 2 years. I have so many thoughts that I’m just going to write and write.
- My Current Body: I’m crazy uncomfortable in my body right now. I gained weight when I went to NZ as evidenced by not fitting into some of my clothes. But I hadn’t weighed myself in close to 8 months. I know I was gaining weight last summer but I stopped weighing myself in April (when I was ~ 140 lbs), so I have no idea how much I weighed right before I left, plus I have no idea how much I gained in NZ between September and now. I know in mid- October I was about 147 lbs. But looking at my body in photos, I didn’t think I looked too bad. I’m almost ashamed to admit this, but I weighed myself this morning and I was 154.6 lbs. I was shocked. I assumed I was closer to 145 lbs. This is actually the heaviest I’ve ever been in my life. I have never weighed more than 150 lbs. It feels almost unreal.
A few caveats: I’ve still been working out a lot, 3-5x per week. I’m still eating way healthier than I was over 2 years ago. I’m a size 4 or 6 but I can still fit into/ button my size 2 jeans (though they are not comfortable to wear, really). So while I weigh significantly more (about 20 lbs more than my lowest of 133, but that was 1.5 years ago), I’m doing all right. I guess that’s some kind of evidence that weight doesn’t tell the whole story. Maybe I’m just in denial. Yeah, it’s probably denial.
My biggest motivator for wanting to lose weight is feeling comfortable again. I just don’t feel good about my body. I feel very self conscious and am not proud of my body. That’s a shitty place to be. So for me, this isn’t about looking good for others, or trying to fit in or anything, it’s simply to feel better about myself, to gain back some of my self confidence. Is it twisted that my self confidence is wrapped up in my body image? Maybe. In an ideal world it wouldn’t be at all, but when you have a rather significant body change, it’s hard to not have it affect how you feel about yourself. It’s also important to distinguish between self confidence and self worth. Do I think I’m worth less than I was before because of my body? No. For sure, not at all. My self worth isn’t wrapped up in my my body image. Thank goodness.
So there we go. I want to lose weight and feel better about myself. And seeing my weight on that scale provides me with ample motivation.
Now I need a plan of action. The previous 2 times that I lost weight I cut calories too drastically. Eating 1500 calories and working out as much as I do is not sustainable. Of course I lost weight, but once I started eating more, I gained it all back. Not only that but I cut out so much from my diet that I felt like I wasn’t really living. Somehow I need to find a balance.
So we’ll see. I have all the tools to do it. I just need to find the right balance/ alignment between being healthy and living it up.
One thing I am sure of is that I need something to hold me accountable. The last 2 times I lost weight it was by keeping track of my weight and calories on a daily basis. I’ll probably use those tools this time as well, but also keep track of my workouts and measurements, plus pictures. Because weight loss is so incremental and slow, its hard to see progress. Documentation of tangibles helps me realize that my body is changing, that I am making progress.
What also makes this hard is that I am a full time traveler with limited financial resources. Fresh healthy food is so expensive in NZ, where I’m living. Example: sweet potatoes, which I love, are about $3.50 per pound. They are typically $0.79 to $0.89 per pound in the USA. It’s not an excuse, just a reality.
The one big big thing that has changed in the past year is how much I drink. I didn’t start drinking until January 2013. Previous to that, I hadn’t drank alcohol in close to 6 years. I’m guessing it’s not a coincidence that my drinking coincided with my weight gain. I drank a lot in New Zealand. A lot. A whole heck of a lot. I don’t need to stop drinking all together, but I need to be more selective about it.
Additionally, I get so hung up on how I used to look. I constantly look at older photos from 1.5 years ago and marvel at how thin I was. At the time however, I wasn’t happy with my body. But looking back, I was freaking thin. I just stare and stare and think how good I looked vs how I look now. This is not healthy. I need to focus on what I can do now. The positive changes I can make. Focusing on the past does not help me at all. Especially when I got that thin in perhaps not the healthiest way. It wasn’t entirely unhealthy, but it wasn’t the pinnacle of health either. Again, balance.
Also I finally feel motivated to change. While I was in NZ I wanted to change but I didn’t feel the overwhelming conviction that I feel right now. Part of that is having something tangible to track my progress. I didn’t have anything with me to gauge how I was doing. I’ll be getting a travel scale so that I can keep up with my progress while I’m on the road along with a tape measure so I can keep track of some measurements.
So that’s that. I don’t know if that was even coherent.