About six weeks ago, Spouse and I watched Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead*. I won’t give much away, but it does involve an overweight Australian and his juicer on a road trip across the U.S. Personally, I found it inspired me to get myself back to the gym, as I have allowed my weight to slowly creep up to about thirty pounds more than I find comfortable. I had been doing cardio on the spinning bike three times a week for thirty minutes, mainly for the endorphins. But I felt like it was time to do more.
Then, I changed jobs the Monday before Thanksgiving and smoke-jumped into a very busy project. I still got to the gym for my mood-maintenance workouts and an occasional yoga class, but not much more.
Spouse decided he wanted to try a juice diet, although not a full on juice fast. I allowed as how I was willing to go along with it. The worst thing that happens is we get a lot of micronutrients, and I can live with that. Spouse has been a lot more committed to the juice-drinking than I have, mostly because it’s easiest to have it for breakfast and my stomach gets upset if I only have liquids first thing in the morning. But we’ve been doing mixed fruit and vegetable juice or smoothies daily**. Spouse is down about 15 pounds.
For $DECEMBER_HOLIDAY, Spouse got me (among other things) a heart-rate monitor, which has been a big help just in the two weeks I have used it. The spinning bikes (my favorite cardio) don’t have the built-in heart monitors. Also, it’ll be handy for yoga and water aerobics classes.
On December 31st, we both went in for an assessment, with a mind toward getting serious about shaping up. I got to the gym at oh-dark-early on Thursday and had a metabolic assessment done; I’m so far off from average height that I doubted (rightly, as it turned out) the accuracy of the age-based calculations for heart rate, resting metabolic rate, and so on. I have a new heart-rate based workout plan and will start seeing a trainer once a month. Also, I found out that I need to eat morethan I thought. A lot more. At a smidge under 5 feet tall, I expected to eat between 800 and 1000 calories a day to lose weight; 1200 at most. Not so, said the senior trainer who did my assessment. In order to avoid throwing my body into starvation mode, she recommended that I eat about 1500 calories a day on non-workout days and 1700 on workout days, to lose 1/2 to 3/4 pound per week. Oh, and by the way, more protein. I can do that. I can definitely do that. I don’t mind taking 45-60 weeks to lose the weight if I can eat like a real person all that time.
Yesterday, I decided to start a food journal. I have done so previously and discovered that sometimes, I don’t want to have to admit to eating something, even to myself. So I don’t eat it because I don’t want to have to write it down.
That brings us to today. I have my cardio workout all planned. Spouse is second-day sore from his first weight-training workout. He got out of bed this morning and said “ooohhhuuuurrrrr”. I said, ” I hear you say ‘ooohhhuuuurrrrr,’ but I hear that you mean ‘holy ratf*uck, Batman!!!'” He allowed as how that was fairly accurate. But he’s going back for more on Monday, and I admire his fortitude.
I don’t do New Year’s resolutions. And in my mind, this is just the next step in a process that started in August. The timing is coincidental…but perhaps fortuitous. It will make it convenient this time next year, to look back at our progress and see how we feel. Both of us have decided that the important thing is not a number on a scale or a BMI number***, but body-fat percentage (quantitative measure) and how we feel (qualitative measure).
I’ll keep you posted.
Wish us luck!
*Spouse always tells people that nobody actually dies in the film, which I feel compelled to convey to the Reading Public in the same.
**If you have a 20% off coupon from Bed Bath and Beyond (and who in North America doesn’t?) you can go into the store, order an item, use your coupon, and have it shipped directly to your house.
***The senior trainer told us that most of the trainers at our gym, who are obnoxiously fit, are obese class I or class II according to BMI calculations. All that extra muscle mass…