Week Twelve Recap

Sun 30 September 2018

I went from the ten-pound range into the eleven pound range, a success for the week. I was hoping for more though. With one day left to go (yesterday), I was a quarter of a pound away from breaking through into the next tier. But even though I ate minimally it still wasn't enough to offset a bounce back weight gain. (I am up almost half a pound today from yesterday.)

Anyway, the barn door is in sight, I'm in the home stretch. With three weeks left in the program, I am four-and-one half pounds away from my goal. That means this is probably going down to the wire. I can't do a sprint this week, since I have two social meals planned. So I need to work on just a normal one-pound drop.

Week fourteen is looking more like a sprint week again.

Family Alert — Family is coming into town the second half of week fifteen. That means that week fourteen really is the big one.

Metrics:

Targeting a fifteen pound loss at one pound per week:

Week 12
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Current     : -10.4 lbs
Weekly Rate : -0.87 lbs / wk
Projected   : 04-Nov
Original    : 21-Oct

Closing Out the Week

Sat 29 September 2018

Well that was cool. I did the toast mono-diet yesterday, and I dropped a full pound and a half since yesterday's weigh-in. If I drop just another quarter of a pound today, then I'll be in the thirteen pound range. That means that I wouldn't have to do another sprint after all.

I think I can do it. I have no major plans today. This will make it easier for next week too, since I will be attending another get-together on Saturday morning. There will be food.

Mid-Week Update for Week Twelve

Fri 28 September 2018

So we went out for that birthday dinner this past Monday, and I gained a few pounds. I've been on a pretty relaxed pace since then (it's Friday now), and I'm finally back to even for the week.

Now I have two days to drop the weight for the week. If I don't make greater progress next week, then I will have to do that sprint in week fourteen.

Week Eleven Recap

Sun 23 September 2018

I dropped a little over a pound this week. If I do the same thing the next four weeks, that means that I will be a half-pound tardy at the end of the fifteenth week. This was a decent week, especially since I wasn't trying very hard. But it's still a little disappointing because I had a chance the last two days to gain more ground, but it just didn't happen.

If I don't move safely ahead of pace by the end of this week, then I'll schedule a sprint for next week or the week after, depending on scheduled events. This week, it looks like I have a big dinner planned for Monday night, then nothing major after that.

Maybe if I don't do too much damage by Tuesday morning, I'll just push ahead hard this week as well.

Metrics:

Targeting a fifteen pound loss at one pound per week:

Week 11
=======
Current     : -9.6 lbs
Weekly Rate : -0.87 lbs / wk
Projected   : 04-Nov
Original    : 21-Oct

Looking Ahead

Fri 21 September 2018

So far, so good this week. It's Friday, and I've already booked my one-pound drop from last week. With two days to go, the only question is how much more I can drop before Sunday's weigh-in. I didn't even do anything special this week. Last week's sprint made this week easy.

We have a birthday dinner planned for Monday, so I have at least one meal for which I need to prep. I originally had something planned for Wednesday too, but that got re-scheduled.

I think I will take it easy today, then do another mini-sprint tomorrow. Hopefully, I can get within a two-pound drop or so range for the period. That will leave me with ample room for Monday night, as well as getting me get completely back on pace.

At two more pounds, I'll be at eleven pounds dropped after eleven weeks. If I get there this week, I might even finish the fifteen early! We'll see about that.

Week Ten Recap

Sun 16 September 2018

It's week ten, and I've dropped a little less than nine pounds. That puts me a week behind schedule. The tardiness is the result of a trip to Vegas eating at multiple good restaurants, of course. The actual damage done was much worse than just one pound, but last week's sprint brought me back to within striking range of my fifteen pounds in fifteen weeks goal.

So now, I have five weeks remaining with six pounds to drop. As the past ten weeks have shown, this is completely doable even with two trips to Vegas:

I don't think I have any huge party plans coming up for the next several weeks, so I should just make steady progress the rest of the way. If I find myself needing an extra push around week twelve or thirteen, I'll schedule a sprint for week fourteen to get myself over the top.

Metrics:

Targeting a fifteen pound loss at one pound per week:

Week 10
=======
Current     : -8.4 lbs
Weekly Rate : -0.84 lbs / wk
Projected   : 04-Nov
Original    : 21-Oct

Week Ten - Sprint Two, Day Seven

Sun 16 September 2018

Wow, that was awesome. The last day of the sprint, I did the toast mono-diet, and it was no problem. Maybe my system just got used to it. Regardless of why, it worked. I dropped almost a pound and a half that last day, and I'm now in striking distance of pound number nine.

It's not the full victory I was hoping for, but it was still progress. Better than getting back to even and a lot better than getting a regression. More encouraging than the actual weight dropped, this goes to show me that I can totally do a weight sprint for a week and get the results I need. I netted a four and a half pound loss from the week of my Vegas trip. If you count my peak weight (the day I actually got back home from Vegas), then I dropped a full five and a half pounds.

Now, even though I'm a week behind schedule, I feel confident that I can pull off another sprint in the next month and get that extra pound back. Other than that, I just need to do my normal meal scheduling the rest of the time.

This is the start of week eleven and I have five weeks and six pounds to go. Feeling good.

Week Ten - Sprint Two, Day Six

Sat 15 September 2018

Basically a wash from yesterday. I ate almost exactly the same thing yesterday as I did the day before: several pieces of toast and a portion of Chinese chicken salad. On top of that, I also ate a couple of bowls of granola. That granola must have made the difference between dropping any weight and maintaining. It's either that, or the weight drop is just slowing down naturally.

I'll have to see tomorrow morning. Today, I will stay on the toast, and only the toast. No salad tonight and no bowls of cereal this morning. I'd like to break through that eight-pound barrier, if possible.

Week Ten - Sprint Two, Day Five

Fri 14 September 2018

Another pound and a half for the week. Let me tell you, toast works. Just get the good stuff. Anyway, two more days to go in the sprint. I'm on track.

As I wrote yesterday, getting back to pre-Vegas weight would be considered a wash. That's where I am right now. So now what remains is to see how much actual progress I can make.

If I drop one more pound, then I'm in the area I consider a success for the week. I would be one pound behind schedule for the overall program. In that case, I would schedule another sprint week sometime in the next month, and then I should hit fifteen pounds in the fifteenth week.

If I drop more than just the one pound by Sunday, then I'll actually be completely on schedule(!). If that happens, I should be able to hit the deadline without having to do any more sprints (assuming no more Vegas trips).

This week is going as well as can be expected, with the chance of getting even better. Feeling pretty good right now!

Goals and Motivations

Thu 13 September 2018

So here it is, the middle of a weight-drop sprint week, with another one planned for sometime in the next month. This isn't easy right now, eating toast all day. What are the reasons I am putting myself through this process? What is the end goal? What is going to happen once I drop that fifteenth pound?

Motivations

In general, I want to be in better health. After getting married a few years ago, many life changes took place similar to when I graduated college. Back then, I went from walking multiple miles a day from class to class, with barely any money for food, to sitting deskbound all day, with more than enough money for all the food I could want (not to mention the free soda). That did not turn out so well.

This time around, I moved from a walk city with the ocean and multiple parks nearby to a suburban house where I need a car to get anywhere other than my front lawn. Oh, and also sitting deskbound all day with all the food I could want. After a year or two of that, I wasn't feeling so great. Then, of course, the baby came along. That changed my life even more.

So now, I want to reset myself, get back to a reasonable weight, and continue on from there.

Specific Motivations

But general motivations usually aren't enough. I also came up with specific reasons that I can shoot out at the people around me to get them on board my good health wagon.

The first specific reason: cheaper life insurance. Some may say that BMI is an outdated metric, but it's still considered a useful, inexpensive, and easy way of measuring obesity. (This is probably for good reason. How many of us are football players with so much muscle that our BMI gets distorted upwards?) So I'm working my way down to the next BMI level (from “overweight” to “normal”).

(How much do I truly care about the cheaper premium? Not much, really. I don't even know what the actual savings would be. I do know that it's an easy thing to tell people when they ask me why I'm losing weight. Apparently, better health is not a good reason, but saving a few bucks a month is.)

The second specific reason: I want to maximize the amount of time I spend with my kid. She's about one year old right now, and lots of fun. I'm sure there will be hard times, but I want to be there for the good times as long as possible.

Finally, the third specific reason: I want quality life time. I enjoy eating a good meal as much as the next guy (probably much more than the next guy). But eating is not the only thing I enjoy. Many things require that I eat less to be able to participate. (e.g. surfing and hiking) So I'm getting my body in shape for the things I enjoy doing.

And there you go, my three reasons for dropping fifteen pounds in fifteen weeks. I'm sure I can come up with a longer list, but this is enough to keep me on track for now.

Future Goals

What am I going to do once I drop the fifteen? After all, one needs to punch through the wall, right?

1 — Create a Weight “Buffer Zone”

One plan is to maintain the weight. Given my lifestyle, this will require planning and diligence. As I mentioned above, I am now getting my BMI into the “normal” range. Dropping the fifteen is just the first step. The step after that is to create a bigger weight buffer zone. This means dropping an additional three to four pounds sometime after the first fifteen. This buffer zone will allow me to let loose once in a while (see: Vegas Trips) and still be within my target weight range. I expect that I will be continually moving up and down in weight, within the buffer zone. If I ever get above the buffer zone, then I'll be in red alert mode.

2 — Build it Up

The second plan is to build up my muscles. This blog is, of course, very much about the superfluousness of exercise - but that only applies to losing weight. Exercise is very important for general health. So once I drop the weight from my body, I will be building it back up the right way. I intend to get lean and strong as opposed to big and bulky.

3 — Eat Less, Eat Well

As goal-oriented as my approach has been for this project, I have more of a natural affinity towards process-oriented techniques. One thing I've discovered during the course of the last several weeks is that I can probably continue forward with an “eat less, eat better” philosophy. In other words: make the calories count.

Like most people, I find it too easy to fall into the trap of eating for eating's sake. Much of the time, I'm not even enjoying (much less needing) the food I'm eating. What I will do from now on is to only eat if I know I'm going to enjoy the food. (Or if I'm super hungry.) I won't waste the calories I'm ingesting on mediocrity.

Another Tactic

Here's another tactic for staying away from the dinner table, by the way: write a super long blog post. Another few days on the toast diet...

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