Wednesday, March 1, 2006

Weigh In Wednesday

Well, today is the day I promised to talk a little about weight loss and dieting and my personal goals on this. I admit though that I am not entirely sure where I should start. I could go on and on about any of those subjects, but I will try to not ramble on so much. Let's start with my personal goals.

As we all know, every person's body is different. One person's 125 is very different than another persons when it comes to weight and weight loss. But according to the chart in my doctor's office (you know the one, the one with the BMI and how much you should weigh if you are healthy) I am only about5 pounds overweight before I reach "healthy weight" status. That's a great start. But realistically I wear a size 12 jean, and I would like to fit into a 10 again. I know darn well that five pounds is not going to give me a new pants size, so my first goal is 12 pounds. Monday this week I dug out the bathroom scale and stepped on it. I haven't done that in a very long time, and surprisingly enough I was 6 pounds lighter than where I thought I was in the first place. So that was very exciting. And as for a timeline... that's a hard one to say. Common sense tells me that if I was hard core dieting and exercising, 2 pounds a week wouldn't be unheard of. But since I don't intend on hard core dieting, or having time to do a lot of exercise, I will realistically say that I would like to drop a size by June 1st. That will get me into many pairs of fun shorts for the warm weather season.

So how do I plan to do it? That is a loaded question. I don't believe in diets. I believe in diet. I think that for many people diets are the answer to a short term weight loss goal- but they are not the answer to long term weight loss and maintaining it. So many people lose weight while on Weight Watchers, or following one of the many diets (Atkins, South Beach, The Zone, Sonoma, etc.) , but they don't keep it off. They don't maintain the healthy eating habits. I beleve the key is moderation. The last thing I want is to deprive myself of anything I want. And I also have a family to think about. Diets are certainly not healthy for children, and cooking more than one meal at a time is just crazy. So my main focus is going to be on portion control. That is where I think I suffer the most. Instead of eating that entire chicken breast, I am going to eat half, and save the other half for lunch the next day. I am also going to try and incorporate more whole grains. They are more nutritive and more satisfying than their white counterparts. That does not mean there won't be white bread and white rice. It just means that I will eat a little less of those.

In the past I have really only "dieted" twice. And I use the term dieted very loosely. Inspired by women on the CLBB that I frequent, I spent six weeks without sugar, two years in a row. That was so difficult for me. I am a sweet freak. My sweet tooth is really huge, and I am always craving cookies and cakes. The first time I did six weeks it was unbearable, but I really liked the way I felt. I had more energy from day to day, and I didn't have those ups and downs I usually experience throughout the course of a normal day. The second time I did the six weeks, it was because I felt the need after a holiday season of cookies and candymaking. It was definitely easier the second time, but it wasn't a lifestyle worth maintaining to me. I love cake. I love pie, and by golly, I want them from time to time. What I can change is frequency. The last few weeks have found me actually tossing out cakes and brownies because I knew I would sit and eat them all if given the opportunity. That is a huge step for me.

(I know it, I am rambling. I promise to stop soon.) What it all ultimately comes down to is calories. Plain and simple. If I take in less calories than I expend, I will lose weight. That means that if I really want to have that scoop of ice cream at night, I must give up the brownies at lunch time. I need to trade off. Do I really need all that sugar in my oatmeal? Maybe a nice dollop of applesauce will work, and then I can help myself to a chocolate chip cookie in the early afternoon. One resource I find invaluable at times like this is www.fitday.com. Fitday allows you to input the foods you consume throughout the day and helps you keep track of what you are eating. They also have output options, where you put in your daily activities and exercise and they show you how much you are using. So if you are looking to trim your own waistline, I highly recommend Fitday.

Okay, enough for today. I'm sure next week Wednesday I will come up with something new and profound to discuss. And I'm afriad there isn't much of a dinner report tonight. I am making chicken parmesan and gemelli with red sauce tonight, so it's nothing exciting that I haven't discussed before. Tomorrow though, I am thinking about tackling a form of pastry. So stay tuned for that cream-filled fun.

6 comments:

poodleluv1 said...

Ever try the one day diet thing? I hate diets but I'm desperate. I weigh 168 and wear a size 12 but about three months ago I was weighing 152... and still a size twelve. It is driving me insane and I am out of ideas....

the rachel said...

well, as if i'm telling you something you couldn't just read somewhere...but one pound equals 3500 Calories. so, if you do the math, drop your average daily intake by 500 Calories per day, and, theoretically, you lose a pound a week. my biology teacher at trinity tried it and proved it works.
now, i should add to this that the average person in today's society doesn't eat a 2,000 Calorie diet, but rather 4,000 or more. so, if you were to cut down to 3,500 per day or less, you'd be cutting what you need.
so that's just a thought to help you as you choose to avoid the hard-core dieting and exercise. love you, big sis!

Erika said...

Poodleluv1- please be careful. I am very leary about anything that forces you to eliminate important food groups from your diet. I am by no means an expert in the field of diets, but eating rice cakes and fruit only is not the way to go... You don't say how old you are, and the sharp spike in your weight suggests that you might want to see a physician. There could be medical reasons for putting on a lot of weight. Thyroid problems are very common reasons for weight gain. Please get that checked out and stay healthy. And if you need to vent, feel free. :-)

The Rachel: Who on earth possibly eats that much??? Just today I have consumed 1700 calories, and the only thing that doesn't include is the glass of wine I am sipping right now. And I have not been hungry by any means. And that is also not reducing what I normally eat, I would say my average per day is around 1900 calories. (More during Code Red- gotta have that chocolate-you know?) I do plan to reduce that a little, but I also want to step up the calories I expend and make it go a little faster. But the exercise talk will likely be for next week.

Alysha said...

Hi Erika. We sound like we're very much on the same page. I think I've gotten to a point where portion control is pretty good, it's the snacking that's killing me right now. At work there are FAR too many temptations. I try to counter them by keeping healthful snacks with me, but today, I ate the healthful AND the junk.

Erika said...

Alysha,

Yup. We're in the same place, I think. I do think I eat pretty healthily, but the snack-monster is really fierce. And I'll have a healthier snack like cottage cheese with pineapple, and feel good about eating something good for me. Then an hour later I'm downing a Snickers. That sugar demon gets me every time.

Alysha said...

Exactly. How to curb the sugar demon. Hmm...sounds like a good thing to blog about.........