Archive for the ‘milestone’ Category

One Year of Clean Livin’

Today is the one year anniversary of my program to get healthy, lose weight, and look & feel better.

My progress so far: I’ve lost 112 lbs. (based on my average weight over the past two weeks, or what I call my “true weight” which smoothes-out the daily fluctuations in my weight).

I’ve been weighing-in and tracking my weight and exercise just about every day over the past year, and that constant feedback has been invaluable.

Thanks to everyone who’s supported me over the past year. I still have a ways to go (I’m still less than halfway to my goal) but I’m pretty confident that I can lose the weight, keep it off, and get healthy. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Light at the End of the Tunnel

Milestone: Lost 100 Pounds

This heavy bag weighs 100 pounds.

This heavy bag weighs 100 pounds.

I should’ve posted this a week ago when my average weight over two weeks (what I’m calling my “true weight”) dipped below 350 pounds, which means I’ve now lost over 100 pounds since 16 June 2008.  My weight loss has been slow but steady as of late, although I can’t honestly say that I’ve been doing everything I should to lose weight and get fit as quickly as I know I can.  I think my weight loss pace will quicken when the weather gets warmer and it’s easier to get out and walk places.  I’m really looking forward to getting another running go at fitness this Summer.  The Winter has been particularly brutal this year and made it harder to go out and exercise.  I still go to the gym regularly, but I find that I tend to lose more weight when I walk outdoors a lot than I do from lifting weights or even from walking on the treadmill.

For those too lazy to do the math, it took me just a little over nine months to lose this first one hundred pounds.  I’m posting a picture of a “heavy bag” because I like the metaphor, but the next time you’re in the supermarket, pick up a pound of butter and try to imagine a hundred of them.  That’s how much weight I’ve lost.  With this milestone I’m about 40% of the way to my goal, with my new milestone being 125 pounds, or 50% of my goal weight.  Ideally I’d love to get halfway there by the one-year anniversary mark of my new Clean Livin’ lifestyle, but even if I miss it by a few weeks I’ll still be doing great, and I’m well on my way to being consistently fitter than I was last week. Every time you see me I’m a little healthier and in better shape than the last time you saw me.  That’s something to celebrate!

Walking, Jogging, and Running

After a particularly brutal Chicago Winter the cold weather lifted for the first time this weekend and so everyone, including your humble narrator, was out and about.  I’ve been trying to be more active, but it’s hard when the cold weather makes your whole body hurt.  I’ve been having issues with muscle contractions and overall tightness in my muscles and joints all season, so it was nice to get out and walk in the (relatively) warmer air.  The temperature reached a high of 55°F on Saturday.

The warmer weather came at a very opportune time for me, as I was >this close< to hitting the 700 mile milestone since I’ve been keeping track of my walking (other than incidental walking at work, in stores, etc.).  I figured I’d probably be able to get out and walk the nine miles I was shy of this milestone over the weekend. Since the weather was so nice, and I’d been cooped-up for so long, I actually crossed that milestone on Saturday alone, walking a little shy of twelve miles in about four hours (an average of 3mph over that length of time is pretty good for me – it means I probably started out at closer to 4mph for the first mile or two).

I was exhausted at the end of my long walking.  I also walked another mile home after meeting some friends, putting me at 704 total since the end of July.  To put that into perspective, that’s about the distance from Chicago to Philadelphia, or like walking from my new home to my old home over a period of six months.

walk_jog_run_logoOne of the tools I’ve been using to track how far I walked when I don’t start out with a pre-fab route is Walk Jog Run, run by (excuse the pun) a couple of friends and co-workers.  I had checked out their site when we first met, and then didn’t really use it again until I started on my exercise routine and wanted to see how far my walk to work was (it was ≈ 2.5mi). Now I find it invaluable for logging my progress and seeing how far I’ve walked, which sadly is never really as far as it feels while I’m walking it.

Walk Jog Run routes overlayed on a Google Map.An early Google Maps mashup, Walk Jog Run incorporates Google maps with custom pins and overlays to allow you to place markers on a map and show the route you’ve travelled (or are planning to travel) along with a tally of the distance of each leg and total distanced walked, jogged, or run.

One of the things I love about it are the mile markers (the yellow diamonds on the map) that make it really obvious exactly how far you’ve traveled.  You can save a route you travel often (like I do with my walk to and from work) or take a look at other people’s public routes to get an idea from other users of the site. I’ll definitely be taking a look at more public routes in the future. Right now I like to just go to a new neighbourhood and get my wander-on.  I’m still relatively new to Chicago, so it’s nice to get to know a place by walking around it.  I also have my iPhone to keep me from getting too lost when I’m in a new place.

Walk Jog Run doesn’t really work on the iPhone unfortunately, but there is a native iPhone app in the works according to the site’s Twitter stream.

Another feature I like is the overlay at the base of the map showing you how long your current route will take to travel given your velocity (I pick an average of 3mph) and how many calories you’ll burn (approximately) based on your body weight.  I know the caloric data isn’t that accurate, but it’s pretty close, and good enough for a quick evaluation.

Stats Overlay

Six Months

jun jul aug sep oct nov dec

Today marks the six month anniversary of my current diet plan.  I’ve lost about 78 pounds since 16 June 2008, and still have a lot to lose, but I’m pleased with my progress so far.  My weight loss was going a bit faster in the Summer, which is to be expected, but if I can weather the holiday season I’ll be looking forward to losing about 60-70 pounds before next Summer.

75 Pounds Down

The engine of a 2005 Ford Mustang weighs 75 pounds.
The 2005 Ford Mustang engine weighs 75 lbs.

I crossed another small milestone this week by losing more than 75 pounds.  I’m calling these “small” milestones but really I’ll probably celebrate a little every 25 pounds.

I’m a little nervous about Thanksgiving and the holiday season coming up. I think I can do okay portion-wise, but let’s face it, come Thanksgiving I’m going to have some stuffing, candied yams, and maybe even a slice of pumpkin pie for dessert.

Still, I’ll be celebrating by getting a KitchenAid stand mixer so I can make my own healthy bread.  The stuff I can find in the store tends to have a lot of sugar or high-fructose corn syrup in it, and even with all the bad stuff tends not to taste very good.  Of course, I’m eating a lot less bread these days, but I’ll still have a few slices per week, and the KitchenAid is something I’ve been wanting to get for a while and is another device that will help reinforce my fitness goals.

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Disclaimer: I am not a doctor. I'm just some guy who lost a lot of weight and studied up on nutrition, diet, and exercise in order to improve my personal fitness. The contents of this site in no way contains medical advice. You should visit your doctor before making any dramatic changes to your diet or activity. While I make every attempt to be as accurate as possible regarding current knowledge and scientific studies (please feel free to let me know when I'm wrong about something), and may from time to time post updates to correct inaccuracies in previous entries, the information on this site is provided "as-is" for entertainment purposes only. Don't do something stupid and then sue me. I'm just trying to help. Thanks.