Monday, July 11, 2011

The Reunions are Over

The last 3 weekends have involved 3 reunions, a long weekend in Dallas with friends, and 1,700 miles of extra travelling in the truck (see THIS POST on my main blog). I don't want to say that I totally quit dieting during that 17 day span, but must admit that I quit about 90% of my dieting effort.

There aren't many excuses on the horizon so maybe there will be time for the diet to take hold. Now truthfully, a very strong willed person on a diet could have gotten through the last 17 days and lost a few pounds. Of course, it's not the strong willed who have trouble with overeating and obesity. Most of us need a couple of ideal weeks at the beginning, ones where the temptation is low and we can get a little momentum going. I guess it's like planting a crop where the seeds need good conditions at the beginning in order to sprout roots and get a grip on the situation.

I need to get a grip on this diet situation. There is a plan in mind for going forward, but I'll try it out for a few days or a week before writing about it.  No point in writing about anything that I can't stick to for at least a week.  Less than 6 months to go in this year.  Work needs to start now if big changes are going to be made in 2011.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Thursday wasn't a good day---so it was a bad day!!!

There were too many times yesterday when I could have made a good choice and instead I made an okay choice.  Nothing terribly bad, but lots of small decisions that could have been better.  Those small decisions that could have been better are exactly the thing that prevents me from losing weight.  Maybe yesterday was good enough to keep from gaining weight, but neutral isn't what I'm shooting for.  Almost all of my small decisions have to be good ones if there's going to be any weight loss.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

A good start

Made it through the first day of this new beginning without any major missteps.  Thursday will need to be another good day because this weekend will be mostly about holding down the damage.  Two reunions on the same weekend with eating being a centerpiece of both.  I'm looking forward to both, and then I'm looking forward to the next weekend when I'll be in town all three days.  Dieting when travelling or attending major social functions can be difficult, but it isn't impossible.  It's certainly possible to prevent massive backsliding and that's a win in certain situations--like the ones I'll be facing Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

July 6, 2011--230.5 Pounds

Will try to stay consistent with my dieting and consistent with my posting for the rest of this year.  Just got back from visiting friends in Dallas and I'll see those same friends around Halloween.  That gives me just about 4 months before my return trip and I'd like to be below 200 pounds at that time.  That is a challenge that can be accomplished.  Plus, if things go slower than expected with the weight loss, then at least I can drop from the obese to overweight level, a change in designation that is right around the 207 mark for a person of my height.

It's all about eating less--it is that simple.  What's hard is to admit to yourself just how much less that needs to be.  I'm overweight because my average food intake is too much for my age and activity level.  There's a cutback that's needed just to get back to the normal food intake, and then an additional cutback that's needed in order to make my body burn stored energy.  A double cutback is the requirement for weight loss, not an easy concept for those of us with a natural desire to eat too much.  Fortunately, while it might not be an easy concept, it isn't an impossible concept to implement and achieve. 

I've discovered that waiting for a sign of hunger before I eat leads to very little eating during a day.  Most of us eat well before the hunger signal goes off.  During the times of dieting when I would wait for the signal and they eat a small amount, maybe 300-400 calories, the drop off in my eating was amazing.  Personally, I would prefer to eat 4,000 or more calories per day because eating is a great source of short time pleasure, but the good news is that eating below 2,000 calories a day isn't something that involves physical pain.  It just takes some mental toughness.  Let's see if I can find some of that for today.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

May 28, 2011

Yesterday was a good day in an odd way. The calorie count was too high for a person trying to lose weight, but there's no doubt that I ate about 1,000 calories less than what would have been consumed normally. Cutting back 1,000 calories is a good thing even if there were still 500-1,000 calories that could have been trimmed from the day.

That's the thing--I don't have to be perfect, just do a lot better than what I've been doing. The good thing about performing poorly in the past is that there is a lot of room for improvement, therefore improvement is a very achievable goal. Today I'll be away from the house a lot, mostly hearing a bunch of bands playing at a local coffee shop. It could be a 4,000 calorie day or a 2,000 calorie day. The difference isn't going to be in how hungry I get, it will be in how much I resist the urge for mindless eating and drinking of items when there's no signal of hunger from the body. The purpose of doing a blog post is to make me think instead of doing mindless things, so hopefully this 5-10 minutes spent posting will save me at least another 1,000 calories today. That would be a very good thing.

Friday, May 27, 2011

May 27, 2011

Not only have I skipped on the blogging for about 6 weeks, I've basically ignored the notion of dieting as well. This morning's weight was 228.5 meaning that 6 weeks of potential weight loss was replaced by a few pounds of gain.

I've got to make this blog my priority along with making dieting a priority. All the things I do with photography and videos, those are things that give me satisfaction so it's a plus for me, but mostly those things produce things for other people. Why I put my effort into those things instead of putting time and effort into making myself more healthy is a mystery to me.

In theory, I should be able to make it through this day, May 27, 2011, without much in the way of food. Small meals and not eating unless there is a feeling of physical hunger is a formula that almost always leads to very few calories over the course of the day. It's all of the calories that are consumed for reasons other than hunger that kill a diet and eventually kill the person who can't work their way out of the obese category.

Following a theory and living a reality are often two very different things. My reality is that I cheat my long term well being for pleasure in the short term. Pleasure in the very short term. If I sneak some candy when going by the switchboard, it does produce pleasure but for how long. 30 seconds? A minute? Maybe even 5 minutes? No longer, and yet that's an extra 50-100 calories added on to the day. As I'm writing this far away from any candy bowl, cheating on the diet seems insane. When the candy bowl is 10 feet away, cheating seems like a fairly good idea.

I've just got to bite the bullet today and cut out all of the wasted calories. When I get up tomorrow there will be no visible difference, but in my mind I'll know it was a small start down the right path. Shedding 50 pounds and keeping it off would be a huge thing in my life, somewhat like making a monumental journey that is designed to be life changing. Both are things that take time, both are things that have to unfold one day at a time. I've got to get through one day--this day--with a successful effort and then I'll look at doing it again and again until I reach a better place in my physical well being.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Friday--April 15, 2011

When telling a friend about my timetable for losing weight, this friend offered an interesting suggestion: "Why don't you just focus on losing 2 pounds a month?"

This seems like way too low a goal when looking from the present forward. However, in looking at the past, I've been trying to get my weight down for 5 years. At 2 pounds per month, that would be almost 100 pounds lost, a number that is far greater than what I actually need to lose.

My friends comment did get me thinking about setting specific goals of how much to lose in what period of time. Is that really important? In my case, I just need to get moving in the right direction. Fast is good, medium paced is okay, but even 2 pounds per month is better than nothing. If a person is losing 2 pounds per month then they aren't gaining weight--that right there is a huge success for many people who have trouble keeping their weight under control.

Truthfully, I would like to do better than 2 pounds per month. I know that a faster rate is possible without much change in my life. Maybe 1 pound per week is a better goal, something closer to 4 or 5 pounds per month. That would add up to 35-40 pounds by the end of the year. That's not too shabby and it would leave me a lot less flabby.

Rather than have a specific plan, I want to concentrate on "doing well" each day. Starting off each day with 5-10 minutes on a blog post (this is a longer exception) that is geared towards setting goals for that one particular day and then trying to meet those goals. A one day diet. Then tomorrow I can start another one day diet.

As for writing the blog post, I need to stop trying to write for the world and just write for myself. It doesn't have to be perfect. It's can be the same thing over and over without me having to worry about boring people. After all, usually it's the same pitfalls that I have to watch out for day after day.

So, getting on to today. My big pitfall at work is always the free candy. Let's see if I can get through today without a single piece of candy. Then at lunch, I know how it feels so mentally right to have 2 hot pockets for lunch, but let's cut that down to 1 hot pocket and a yogurt for desert. Then this evening I'll probably end up at two music shows. Let's skip the beers and order diet sodas. Honestly, if my doctor told me I had to give up alcohol for the rest of my life, it wouldn't phase me a bit. Giving up diet sodas would be a far more difficult plan to follow.

For the record, I was 226 pounds this morning. I've been hanging around that 225 area for a while. That's progress from the 235 area from the beginning of the year, but I can do better. Success will be accomplished one day at a time. Nothing spectacular, just a string of days with good decisions like passing on the candy, shaving off a couple of hundred calories at lunch, and then passing on 500-600 calories of liquid in the evening. Do that day after day and the weight will come off. Do that day after day and a person will build habits that will go far in keeping the weight off.