Today I decided to grab a little perspective and pull on my big girl pants.
Here are the big girl pants…just in case you thought I was being metaphorical!
So I had a bit of a moan yesterday – I think you will agree that we all have days like that. It’s a challenge working out how to deal with those days when my default setting is to drown myself in a sea of junk food.
Whilst I appreciate that I haven’t been anywhere close to drowning in junk food for quite some time, it takes some bloody effort not to revert back to type. So I have a moan instead and try and deal with my emotions without the addition of a McDonalds and a tub of Haagen Dazs or two!
As a person of action(ish!) I hate sitting there moaning and making excuses. I can’t see how the gym can be solely responsible for this slowing down of fat shifting, despite what I am being told, so I am doing my research and looking into ‘stuff’.
My first action point is to have a long weekend away from the gym. My current routine is a day of legs on Monday, arms on Tuesday, cardio on Wednesday, a PT session on Thursday, cardio on Friday, and Pilates on Saturday – give or take a bit of jiggling around with the PT day and maybe an addition of a Friday evening swim.
It’s quite a lot, but I love it – I really do. The problems only surface when I get on the scales! I feel great all week, can feel myself toning up, love being able to move, love feeling stronger and more mobile…but then it’s like a punch in the stomach to see the numbers not moving quick enough. Whilst I understand that I may be dropping body fat and gaining lean muscle…the Slimming World scales do not reflect this – psychologically it’s a bit head-doing!
So I have been instructed to have a little break. My PT must have seen the look on my face when he suggested a whole week off – as it would do me good apparently – and so quickly changed the week to a long weekend. As mentioned last night, I will still be going to my Pilates class but I won’t be stepping foot in the gym on Friday or Monday.
I did get told during my Slimming World group just to stop going to the gym, or to have a good break. However this advice always comes from people who have never stepped foot in a gym and rarely exercise. So their response when they hear that the gym is not conducive to my weight loss is to tell me to give it up. I also had one lady tell me just to have the weight loss surgery as ‘it’s much easier’…little does she know. I wish she could speak to people who have had surgery to hear how tough an option it can be!
So I naturally ignore these people, even though there may be a grain of truth in having a break from the gym. When my trainer suggested that it’s good to have a break every now and again, I listened. He ‘gets’ it. He has the knowledge and understanding and so I listen. For me, I have to feel that the advice I take comes from a credible source – and whilst my consultant is credible, she is not a gym person at all so I find it hard to take in her advice at times when it comes to the exercise…even though she has seen countless people going through what I am!
I think of it like taking advice about driving from a non-driver – or about looking after my horses from a non-horse person. I want advice from people who know…not who think they know.
So the first action point is a mini-break. Although I am already panicking about what to do with my time!
The second action point was actually sitting down and working out my ‘numbers’ since joining the gym. I wanted to see if I was blowing things out of all proportion – as I can be a drama queen…which I am sure you have gathered by now!
I joined the gym 22 weeks ago and have lost 39.5lbs in that period – an average of 1.8lbs per week. In the 22 week period prior to joining the gym I lost 59.5lbs – an average loss of 2.7lbs per week. So there is a clear difference…and I am not sure that a 0.9lbs difference can be attributed to fat loss but muscle gain. I am going to do a little more research here though.
Given that I had these figures, I couldn’t help but try and work out a little projection for the coming year – why do I do these things to myself?! At my current average I will have lost 93.6lbs – so 6st 9lbs (ish – maths was never my strong point!) At my previous average I would have lost 140.4lbs – so 10st.
It’s a bit of a difference! I would love to try and get the balance back if possible. I don’t want to lose additional weight – bigger weekly losses – as a result of my exercise…but to keep it at the previous rate would be bloody marvellous. I do have to factor in that I weigh less now and so on a % basis that my weight loss averages will drop…but even so!
If only weight loss were as simple as an equation – it is in one sense I guess…the calories in versus calories out. But it’s never that black and white.
So I have worked out the numbers and it’s not the end of the world. It just means that I no longer get shiny Slimmer of the Week or Slimmer of the Month stickers…my reign is over!
My third action point is to reassess my food.
As I said above, weight loss is a case of calories in versus calories out. With Slimming World we are lucky enough not to have to count and measure much. This can be a good thing, but I also think that it can lead to a false sense of security if that makes sense? For example if I cook a recipe and there are two of us, but the recipe serves 4, if it’s syn free then I will just split it between the two of us…so double the calories Slimming World had planned. Portion control is important too.
I have looked into the caloric equations out there. You calculate the basal metabolic rate, factor in activity levels via the Harris Benedict equation – although there are some critics of this equation – and the resulting figure leaves you with the caloric intake needed to maintain your current weight. If you want to lose weight then you deduct 15 to 20% from this figure.
I have done this for myself and am confident that I rarely get near this figure, but I never eat below my BMR figure as this is absolutely needed in order for your body just to tick over on a daily basis.
Being confident and being certain however are slightly different…false confidence is a killer! So I am going to look for a set of calorie counting scales and see if I can count the little buggers for a while. I am not going to get obsessed about the calories though…as I have done okay so far without tracking them, but as I get closer to target then things will need to change and so I am making a few changes in preparation. I am in the process of checking with a couple of ‘professionals’ again about my caloric figures just to make sure.
My final action point is to look at the quality of the food I eat. Whilst a calorie is a calorie, the quality of the calorie is important too – the nutritional content of a chocolate bar differs greatly from that in a handful of nuts…but the calories may be equal. I have dug out my ‘bible’ – a pretty heavy text regarding nutrition – and I am going to get reading sections of that again. To be honest, this is probably an action point that I could skip – but I like to be thorough.
I know that we need good fats – avocado, olive oil, nuts, oily fish – and I grab oily fish where I can but tend to skip the rest due to the structure of Slimming World…even though, in moderation for us losers, they are fabulous foods. I know that processed food is no good for me, but I still do eat a little bit as it is convenient – so the Batchelors savoury rice, or Pasta’n’Sauce packets that would have ‘clean eaters’ screaming at me. So I am going to check out the balance of foods that I eat too…this will be an evolving and ongoing process though – so not an overnight answer.
That’s my plan then!
I think this emphasises how seriously I take my weight loss. I often get asked how I stay focussed and on track…well, I treat it like a work project and dedicate a serious amount of time to it. If it’s important to you, then you’ll do it!
Today has been a good one. Great coaching clients, a great personal training session, and a great play session with my three year old nephew…I was on all fours with him sat on my back playing ‘horsey’ and telling me to go faster. Now this kind of babysitting fun was not a possibility until a few months ago, so it’s great to be able to get on and off the floor and have fun with the kids. I got excited by a PPI notification from the bank today – but I was convinced that the PPI feckers never conned me. I remember one chap telling me that the loan wouldn’t be approved without it, so I took it and cancelled it later…it was this loan that they had written to me about…so my dreams of paying off the credit card and a holiday was short-lived. If I hadn’t been such a bolshy bugger with salespeople then perhaps I would have had a little unexpected windfall! And then it was home to tend to Mr WLB. He pulled a muscle in his back at the gym today…he is the worst patient in the world – seriously. He reads online rubbish about cures and how serious this muscle pulling can be…I almost felt the need to order his coffin based on his mood and outlook today. Send ME some positive vibes as well as him as I think I will need them! Tonight is going to be relaxed – no choice really given the pulled muscle!
Breakfast: Banana porridge (5 syns).
Another good food day! Brekkie was my usual gym fuel. Lunch was a nice change – warm pittas with herb salad, Quorn deli chicken, and cottage cheese. Dinner was simple – wholemeal pasta with a veggie sauce – courgette, onion, tomatoes, peppers, garlic, chilli flakes, and mixed herbs – with meatfree meatballs and cheese.
Exercise: Warm up followed by 60 minutes PT.
Thank you for reading,
Weight Loss Bitch xxx