Posts Tagged ‘exercise’

Week 1: yoga REVISED to aerobic activity goals

In The Program on August 11, 2014 at 1:28 pm

I have been the primary caretaker for my bedbound mother and with all the lifting and twisting from her and from caring for my very active two year old I hurt my back and aggravated old wrist injuries. No fair! Yoga for me is out for a few more weeks.

The reason I started this program with a weekly yoga goal is because it was a way to get back in touch with my own body and to release some endorphins. Despite being injured I am finding ways to do that. The fitness guy at the YMCA recommended a stationary bike so that’s been my primary form of exercise. In fact, I am on it now as I write this blog.

I think starting a major exercise program early on in a weightloss program isn’t a good idea. Although exercise gives you a mental boost it also can make you more hungry and more tired. When you are beginning some serious lifestyle tweaks, being more tired can erode willpower and clear thinking. That has been my experience in the past. Focusing on food first has led to more longterm success for me.

That said, getting back into my body via exercise has been invaluable in developing a deep love for my body and a desire to take care of it as best I can.

So, at week seven, following my injuries, I looked at the US governments weekly exercise recommendations. here is the info I found:

(18 to 64 years)
Adults should do at least 2 hours and 30 minutes each week of aerobic physical activity at a moderate level OR 1 hour and 15 minutes each week of aerobic physical activity at a vigorous level. Being active 5 or more hours each week can provide even more health benefits. Spreading aerobic activity out over at least 3 days a week is best. Also, each activity should be done for at least 10 minutes at a time. Adults should also do strengthening activities, like push-ups, sit-ups and lifting weights, at least 2 days a week.

So, I am subbing week 1’s yoga 2x/week challenge for at least 2 hours and 30 minutes each week of aerobic physical activity at a moderate level OR 1 hour and 15 minutes each week of aerobic physical activity at a vigorous level. The strengthening recommendations will be added in, in future weeks. Stay tuned! And, good luck as you navigate how to best care for your one and only precious body. Be gentle with yourself and your expectations. As “they” say, your mileage may vary.

Review of my plan:
Week 1: weekly aerobic activity goals
Week 2: 8 glasses of water a day
Week 3: no eating after dinner
Week 4: one sweet treat per week
Week 5: switch from sugar to a healthier sweetner
Week 6: proper fruit and veggie intake
Week 7: proper protein and dairy intake
Week 8: appropriate grains intake


Week 8: the dreaded grains adjustment

In The Program on August 11, 2014 at 12:59 pm

This is the week I have known has been coming and that I have been dreading: time to focus on modifying my grain intake to healthier levels. I love all things grains and I am not talking about refined flour products, I am talking about the healthy whole grain non genetically modified stuff. But, nothing is healthy no matter it’s makeup if I am consuming more than my body wants/needs/can healthily process.

According to this chart by the US government, I need about 6 ounces of grains a day, half of which is to be whole grains. This chart reviews what constitutes an ounce.

I am up for the challenge and no doubt this will make a huge difference in my weight loss goals.

Review of my plan:
Week 1: yoga 2x per week at least
Week 2: 8 glasses of water a day
Week 3: no eating after dinner
Week 4: one sweet treat per week
Week 5: switch from sugar to a healthier sweetner
Week 6: proper fruit and veggie intake
Week 7: proper protein and dairy intake
Week 8: appropriate grains intake

Week 6: amp up fruit and veggie intake

In The Program, Uncategorized on July 25, 2014 at 1:35 pm

Moving towards a super healthy diet, this week is all about monitoring fruit and veggie intake. In other words, making sure I am getting enough of the healthy stuff my body needs. As always I am taking baby steps to make sure this diet/lifestyle and these wellness goals are sustainable. No quick fixes here! No crash and burn diets! No overwhelming, time consuming, obsessive plans. One weekly goal at a time means I am building a healthy, smart, tailor-made, reasonable, sustainable weightloss program to say bye-bye to the pregnancy (and then some) weight forever.

At this point maybe I should rename the blog “losing that toddler weight” since I have yo-yoed so much during my daughter’s toddlerhood. I have lost more than half of the pregnancy weight but never have lost more than two thirds of it because for the last year I have been gaining and losing the same 10-15lbs over and over again. This yoyo pattern makes sense to me since I have been under intense stress as I care for my mom going through hospice, but still, enough already!!! Yoyoing is frustrating aesthetically and also is super unhealthy for my poor body trying to cope with all the extreme measures I was placing on it. Time to care for my body in a healthy way and not have us be adversaries. Thank goodness this latest approach to healthy weight loss has been working. The past six weeks of “easy does it” changes are adding up to success. My clothes are looser! Just as importantly, I am hitting all my daily and weekly goals and that feels so good.

Anyways, this week, the way I am figuring out my goals for daily fruit and veggie intake is from the US government’s guidelines. In lieu of going to the doctor and getting her input, this seems like a fairly reasonable source. Hopefully there aren’t too many lobbyists influencing the guidelines lol! I am finding the
US government’s website very easy to use. To check the chart for how many vegetables you should consume based on age and gender click here . For fruit click here.

For me I should have a goal of 2.5 cups of veggies per day and 1.5 cups of fruit. I probably hit these goals half the time I would say, so I am excited to amp up my intake and reap the benefits of better nutrition. Take some time to explore the whole website in general because it has some great info that hopefully is backed by lots of science. For example, it is interesting to note on the the veggie chart that it shows you should shoot for particular quantities of various subgroups. I bet I don’t get 5.5 cups of red and orange veggies a week.

Have a great, healthy, reasonable week!

Review of my plan:
Week 1: yoga 2x per week at least
Week 2: 8 glasses of water a day
Week 3: no eating after dinner
Week 4: one sweet treat per week
Week 5: switch from sugar to a healthier sweetner
Week 6: proper fruit & veggie intake

Oh cereal, I must let you go

In Random Thoughts, The Program on July 17, 2013 at 4:12 pm

When I gained 99lbs you would have thought it was because of binging on junk food like candy, cookies, cake, chips, fast food, etc. Although I did eat some of that stuff, really I ate “healthy” food in excess. For example, raisin bran is a relatively healthy food, right? Nope, not when you have had three overflowing large bowls in rapid succession it isn’t!!!

I have been able to keep potion sizes of healthy food in check throughout my sixty pound weight loss this year, except for cereal. It is like I become a cereal zombie and, in a daze, I pour another bowl, after I have just had one! And it isn’t Lucky Charms or Coco Puffs it is Shredded Wheat and Cheerios! Super frustrating. I have been fighting this behavior for awhile now and all I can think to do is that maybe I need to simply abstain from cereal for awhile. Give it the twenty-one days that experts say are needed to form new habits and then try and see if I can eat cereal in a normal, properly portioned way. I hate doing extreme things like this but for now I think I must… I don’t want anything, not a stupid bowl (or three) getting between me and the final thirty pound weight loss!

Six Months, Thirty Pounds

In Random Thoughts, The Program, Uncategorized on July 16, 2013 at 4:29 pm

Alright folks, I am super impatient to get the remaining weight off. I feel like I have to do something while I wait! Starvation diets and crazy amounts of exercise aren’t going to work for me, tempting as the quick results would be, I have to be reasonable and still function well! In fact, I have been doing a plan for months that has been working, just very slooooooowly… So, to calm the jitters and the rapid extreme weight loss fantasy schemes going on in my head (as a Mom to a toddler I just can’t go crazy;I need my energy), I think it is time to set some goals

My baby turns two the end of January, 2014. How about I set my goal to have the remaining pregnancy weight (and then some) off by her birthday? That gives me six months to lose thirty pounds. That works out to be five pounds per month. This, I think, is doable, even with the multiple months of holiday food craziness near her birthday. This means monthly weight check-ins, here on the blog.

Also, I have heard that people who give themselves non-food rewards at milestones are more successful. Sooooo… On August 15th, if I have lost 5lbs by then I am rewarding myself with a new piece of jewelry that I can look at daily and say, I did it! I am on my way! I am going to make it! We aren’t talking diamonds lol, but something I wouldn’t normally ever buy so that it is a real treat.

64lbs down, 30 to go….The journey continues!!

Well… That didn’t work well for me!

In Random Thoughts, The Program, Uncategorized on July 15, 2013 at 9:50 pm

Well, I tried the no sugar, flour and wheat diet for the first three days and I felt a bit better physically but I was SO CRANKY! At the end of the third day I broke and had some sugar (sour patch kids candy, no less!)

Instead of beating myself up and saying why oh why don’t you have more will power, I decided to go back to what has worked for months: logging my calories via an app and staying within my calorie allotment. The slow but steady method, in which I don’t feel crazy-deprived, is what I can sustain. It is just so hard being patient with the weight loss but it sure is better than walking around super cranky and then having way too much candy!

Amping It Up

In Exercise, The Program, Uncategorized on July 12, 2013 at 9:45 pm

The last few weeks I have been consuming way too much snack food. It isn’t that I have gone over my calorie allotment, on most days I don’t. But I have felt stuck just when I only have a third of the extra weight left to lose. I have lost more than two-thirds of my weight gain!! But this last thirty or so pounds feels elusive and daunting. Plus, my skin isn’t looking great. And, my energy feels low even though I am in great shape. Low energy is mot acceptable because my toddler requires all the energy I can muster!!

I have decided that for the next few weeks I am going to abstain from sugar, flour and wheat. In the past doing so has been my golden ticket for weight loss. I don’t want to live my life obsessed with “good” and “bad” foods which this diet kicks up for me. So, this is a temporary program. The timing is good: no birthdays, holidays or other special occasions in the next few weeks that might trip me up. I hope after a few weeks of this “clean” eating that I will feel better and the weight loss will be kick started again. Wish me luck!

What I Have Been Doing

In Exercise, Random Thoughts, The Program on July 8, 2013 at 11:28 pm

I thought I should check in and let you know what my program has been the last few months. The core of it has been to log my calories. I have been using an app called MyPlate by Livestrong. My weight loss has been very slow (but steady). Just a few days I changed my setting from “very active” to “moderately active” which I think is more appropriate. This approach to diet has really worked for me since Mid-March. I rarely if ever feel deprived and it has become like second nature.

For exercise I ordered that Insanity workout….embarrassing but true! I needed something to do at home while my toddler naps. So far it has been great! I do it more like every other day, not every day like the program suggests; I have to make it work with my life…. I was running for exercise using a free app (couch to 5k) but a toddler who has become anti-stroller has made that not work well.

I am looking forward to reporting good progress to you in the next month!

Fitting Into Old Clothes

In Random Thoughts on June 29, 2013 at 12:03 am

I had forgotten about one of the great benefits of weight loss, which I am finding especially true while losing the pregnancy weight: fitting into old clothes. Today was a particularly hot day. I go on a mommy and me hike every week at this time. I was not looking forward to hiking in crazy hot black leftover maternity pants. They have been getting looser and looser but not to the falling off me point so I have kept them around. Today, on a whim, I thought, hey, why not try my old hiking skirt. And you guessed it…it fit! It has an elastic tie and some give but still, it fit!!! All this hard work is totally paying off! When you have had so much extra weight to shed it can be overwhelming and these small victories feel really, really good!!

Dieting State of Grace

In Random Thoughts on April 23, 2013 at 12:59 pm

About three weeks ago I was going through a tough time – bored with the diet, frustrated by the slow movement of the scale, starting to cook up obsessive diet and exercise plans, etc. After pushing through it (and thankfully not making radical changes that just would have been distractions), I have arrived in this golden period of dieting that I don’t think I have ever experienced before: I am not obsessed with food, I am not overly hungry, I am not obsessed with dieting “tricks” and even though the scale only lightly decreases I am not freaked out about it.
What has happened???

It is a dieting state of grace. I am sixty-one pounds down and have thirty-eight to go and for some reason, the last few weeks, thirty-eight pounds doesn’t seem as irritating, frustrating and impossible as it did three weeks ago. I am so grateful. I have been hesitant to write a blog post about this because, superstitiously, I have been worried that if I acknowledged how great the last few weeks have been that it could go away. Fingers crossed that it won’t!