Friday, November 14, 2014

Cutting out Wine to Lose Weight

Ok, so this is one thing I simply won't do. At least for now. Let me whine about my wine for a bit. Call me crazy, say I don't "want it bad enough" or have no self-control, but I love my glass (or 2) of wine at night. The past 5 days though, I have been very good and only had 1 glass per night. Well, there was one night I had two, but I hadn't eaten as much during the day and I just simply wanted some more.

The one thing about diets I hate is the restriction. I hate authority. Well, I hate shitty authority, but if I know if it's for my best interest, I'll deal with it. Same with diets. I know that I can cut out drinking and lower caloric intake, but I also know I've lost weight while indulging on it as well. Balance is key, as it is with everything else in life.

I'm not noticing any dramatic changes or shifts in my mentality though. I eat my dinner before my wine so I can digest it first, then I drink tons of water. This is making it hard for me to sleep through the night with a gallon of pee knocking on heaven's door at 3 am. I am nursing that one glass though as well. I'm really appreciating it and letting it stretch out for a good 30 minutes.

I will have my weigh in for week one on Monday. Since I don't plan on going hog-wild this weekend like last weekend, I'm optimistic of the scale. I think taking baby steps to not drinking wine every night is important. I want to gradually feel the need less and less rather than have the glass ripped out of my hand. My next step is to choose 1 day a week where I do NOT have wine. I will have to pick this day very carefully, that's all I can say.


Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Sticking to a Weight Loss Program

I woke up 2 pounds lighter today but I'm not going to get too excited. That is the equivalent of a lot of water, a ton of wine or maybe a giant bowel movement. I could be up 3 tomorrow, who knows. It was nice to see the scale actually move though, but I'm not going crazy until at least I'm out of the 180's.

I realized today that even though I plan meticulously and dabble in a bunch of programs (both eating and workout related), I've never really followed one to the T. Back in the day, I tried Atkins and South Beach. And while I was 10 years younger and 20 pounds lighter, it worked for me then, but it won't work for me now. It also wasn't sustainable.

A few years ago I had joined Weight Watchers. Again, while it worked for some friends famously, it did not work for me. I already ate healthily and exercised a lot and the program just didn't seem to boost me past any plateau I had hit. It was also a little too easy for me to have things just because "my points allowed it".

I don't believe in excluding anything from your diet unless you have a medical reason. That being said, I gave up booze for a bit (let's be honest - 10 days), I tried going gluten-free when it was still trendy and I punished myself by trying to go dairy free to lose weight. I even did some crazy woo-filled "Candida Cleanse" I succumbed to after being at home too long and reading too much on the internet. All that ended up happening was that I resented whatever program I was on and inevitably bounced right back to my normal eating habits, and tacked on some forbidden snacks that I had missed in the interim. You know, because I deserved it.

I trained for a half marathon two years ago and lost a bit of my weight. I tried out boxing, couldn't stick with it due to surgery. I tried out Bikram yoga. It didn't light the heated flame under my ass hot enough to commit to that either. I had tried Jamie Eason's Live Fit Trainer for a while to get into weight lifting and enjoyed her "eat the food/lift the things" approach to life. The thing is, I'm not a body builder. While I loved the fact she tells you to meal prep (which I DO still do) and eat 6 x a day, it wasn't helping me lose weight.

This is not to say I won't go back to it when I am ready. I think the program is great for beginners who want to learn their way around the weight sections of the gym or for folks who have the time. Phase 3 was daunting and I don't have over an hour to spend at the gym every day, but if it works for you, hurray! I think it helped me plan out my meals and eat for strength, but not for fat loss. I believe I've been eating at maintenance for a while now. Combined with my wine intake, I was probably evening out the amount I drank in calories a week to the amount I burned. No wonder I wasn't losing.

While it's still early in the program that I am on, I can see myself making changes for the better and sticking with it for a while. Already, I'm drinking more water and I'm eating dinner earlier. I'm drinking ONE glass of wine, compared to my nightly 2.5. I'm eating a LOT less, but not starving. These are simple things, I know. Yet these are things I was not doing. I can still bench press and squat 95#, but I'm not going to go for strength gains until I lose some fat first. My main goal is to lean out, but not lose my muscle.

I really wonder if there is such a thing as "jump-starting your metabolism" and if I am really "carb-sensitive" but only time will tell. I feel like for the past few years I've tried all sorts of programs, or combined bits from several into my own, or just tried focusing on too many things at once. I've never just stuck with one goal, one program and one process. I'm optimistic something good will come of this round. Let's see how I feel next week...

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Biting the Bullet

I haven't written because I feel as if I'm in some sort of a slump again. That, combined with being busy socially kind of let the blogging priority fall to the wayside. I'm still plodding along, working out, meal prepping, lifting and running, and not seeing a change. Friends in and out of the area have gotten married, work is busy and I had a guest for a few days last weekend, so things have been all up in the air and are now settling down. 

Since I haven't seen change or loss of fat in so long, I decided to do something about it. Note how I am focused on FAT, not "weight". I could care less what the scale says these days, I just want to fit into my clothes again and see muscle. 

I went against every fiber of my being, everything I stand for, everything my wallet could handle and decided to join a weight loss program. I won't mention what it is in case it does or doesn't work. I'm still not sure how I feel about such caloric restriction, but honestly, since nothing else I'm doing is working, this was my last shot. I have committed to it for six months. Let's see where I am May 1 after all is said and done. I envision my man and I on a beach somewhere and I'm looking mighty fine in a bikini with a nice high, tan ass.

My health "coach" in this program is also taking me on as a project or challenge. Considering how healthy I eat, how meticulously I plan, how active I am at the gym as well as in regards to lifting weights, there is no reason I should not lose weight. Perhaps the answer really is that simple: I'm eating too much. Too many calories, too big of a portion? Is it truly the wine I drink that is preventing me from shedding fat? Time will tell.

I'll be focused on habit changing. I aim to eat dinner earlier, drink more water, eat less at night and curb my wine intake. These are all big changes and goals that will not be easy. This program has me doing a lot of self-reflection. I sort of hate that. On one hand, it makes me accountable since I have emotional "homework" to do, and things to talk about every other week with my one-on-one meetings with my coach. On the other hand, it's just another chore on my to-do list.

Already, I feel hesitation because I never stick with anything -- blogging, writing, tracking on myfitnesspal, etc, nothing sticks for more than a few days or few weeks. I get bored. I get irritated. I get annoyed with the fact I have to take time out of my day to "track these things", or "feel these thoughts". I shouldn't though, since it's about ME. What is being done is for the benefit of myself - yet I can't seem to get with the program so to speak. This will be a challenge. For as much as I focus on myself and my downfalls or limitations,  I don't really help myself up all that much. 

I will officially start tomorrow. I had gotten some meal replacements and ideas on Thursday, and actually followed through on Friday with eating before 7pm. I had a low cal dinner and was good all day carb-wise. I royally screwed up Saturday out with friends though. I realize I cannot put myself in social settings where there is alcohol and/or chicken wings. My excuses are countless: 
  • It's so and so's birthday, time to celebrate!
  • As long as I eat low carb, it'll be fine
  • This will be my last hurrah
  • No, really, I'll start tomorrow
  • I don't want to be the only one not drinking
  • I should really eat if I'm going to be drinking…

The list can go on. At the end of the day, I drank about 5 drinks, had about 12 chicken wings to myself, ate dinner late at home and it involved bread, and I drank 2 glasses of wine. Even though I drank water throughout the afternoon (and like a fish), I was still battling a migraine at night and I felt like crap today. I immediately hated myself when nighttime rolled around Saturday and I was pretty much more down on myself or feeling depressive this afternoon. Oh, I've also decided to up my antidepressant medication to see if that helps. 

Today was good though. I rested, prepped all my food with lean meats and veggies, planned my meals, organized my things for the week, took my vitamins, and tried to get a run in outside. It was a sucky run though, so I felt like crap. I took a rest day from the gym Saturday and knew I had to do something today. The weather was so nice that I felt like it would be a waste to not do something outdoors. 

I dusted off my old Garmin gps watch but it would not--for the love of all things holy--sync with the location satellites. My phone apps were not working. Map My Run was not tracking the right pace. Nike running wouldn't run and my phone wouldn't recognize the app. Everything sucked. To make matters worse, about 10 minutes in, my shins started to kill me. I have been running on the indoor track at the gym or the treadmill for my runs. My body is not used to the concrete and it seriously took a beating. I tried to do at least 2 miles (I hope) and limped back home. 

Tomorrow I'll try to run again, do some squats and push ups. I have my "walking test" with my coach to see where I am at pace-wise for walking and cardio ability. This will be easy. I hope I get to meet with my trainer soon too. I have big goals all around and would love to get started on them. 

I think November 10th will be my new "Day 1".  I know I'm setting myself up for a hell of a time with the holidays coming up, but I guess it's a good thing we never have plans and don't see family during this part of the year. What usually upsets me could actually be used to my advantage now, go figure! 

I've got ground turkey and vegetables for breakfast with a pear, some chicken and broccoli for lunch with a salad, I'll do my program meals for a snack and dinner (before 7) and be watchful of my wine. I want to start the week off strong. Here goes nothin'...