Saturday, September 26, 2009

I Enjoy Being a Girl

Except for the two weeks out of the month that I don't.

You'll notice my little ticker is steadily ticking in the wrong direction. I'm blaming it on PMS. Or PMDD. Or the two weeks a month when aliens take over my body, mind, and spirit.

Seriously, it's nothing for me to gain and lose 5 lbs. over the course of a month, and for that reason, I really get a more accurate view of my progress by weighing in at the same time montly. However, for purposes of this project, I felt I would be more motivated to stay on track by weighing in weekly.

So, I'm doing it weekly, and seeing what happens. Well, what happens is this. I started this project a month ago at 162.2. After recording losses for a couple weeks, I started creeping back up, and I'm now at 161.4. So, I feel like that 0.8 lbs. is a legitimate loss. While the scale may creep back down over the next couple weeks, I know it will creep up again a week or two later. But, I figure that if my weight at the same time each month is going down (however slowly) then that's progress.

I mean, I put this weight on at a rate of about 5 lbs. a year. If I can take it off at a rate of about 10 lbs. a year, that's okay. Yeah, I'd prefer 10 lbs. a month. But, with the tiny changes I'm making, changes I can live with for the rest of my life, I'm good with slow and steady.

Anyway, on with the next baby step. Actually, I've made a couple since I last discussed my steps, so I'm just gonna share the rest to catch you up to where I am in my plan.

I know I need more fiber in my diet. And, of course, the best way to get this fiber is through whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. However, I'm just not getting enough that way. Very few of us are. So, I bought a fiber supplement in the form of capsules, and I'm taking them each evening before supper with a glass of water. My thinking is, I need fiber, I need water, so that's good regardless. By taking them both right before supper, I'm hoping it will fill me up somewhat, and I'll eat less supper. I can't tell you if it's working or not, but that's what I'm telling myself. (I also had a theory once that I could eat all the chocolate I wanted as long as I drank enough water afterward, because it would wash all the chocolate out. That didn't prove to be the truth.)

The next thing is, I've decided that I don't like the way that body fat percentage is not going down. At all. In fact, it's going up, which is so not cool. So, it's time to add in some sort of muscle building activity. Now, you know I'm not going to go overboard on this. Plus, I read a great article a while back, one of the many things that helped inspire my baby steps theory, about a woman who made the one tiny change in her life of doing 2 minutes of push ups every morning. That's all she did. Literally changed nothing else about her lifestyle or her diet.

Over the year, she of course improved a lot in how many push ups she could do, how fast, etc... She saw a lot of muscle definition in her upper body. This is to be expected. What she didn't expect is that she lost 5 pounds. From doing nothing else but 2 minutes of push ups.

So, I'm going to one up her by doing push ups and crunches. I know, Janet's gone and lost her damn mind. I'm not doing them every day. I'm shooting for more like every other day, or even every three. And sadly, I cannot do 2 solid minutes of push ups or crunches at this point. So, my plan is to do as many as I can.

Regina and I have been discussing the merits of sticker charts for motivating children (and husbands). This reminded me that a few years ago I had a system where I bought a calendar and hung it where I worked out, then each day that I exercized, I put a sticker on the calendar. (Can you tell I am a teacher?) I found this surprisingly motivating for a full grown adult. Plus, it gave me a concrete record of what I'd been doing. I could look back and see, "Wow, I worked out 22 days this month!" Or, "Hmmm...I only worked out 7 days this month. Maybe that's why my tummy looks like it does?"

I'm not formally counting this as a step, more a way of keeping track of my current steps, but I've created myself a chart. On the chart I listed the date and check boxes for my water, fiber, vitamin, fruit, walking, push ups, and crunches. I need to buy some cute little stickers. I'll let you know how it works out for me.

For the record, today I did 17 push ups (on my knees) and 45 crunches (not full sit ups). I was actually pleasantly surprised at those numbers. I may not be able to move tomorrow.

Most Awesome Song I Heard While Working Out: "I'm Coming Out" by Diana Ross. I realize this is a gay anthem. And I'm not gay (not that there's anything wrong with that). I think it's just so positive and upbeat, and I love it.

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