Losing those inches

This morning, I noticed that my belt needed to be closed one hole farther in than it has been for a long time. This is a huge victory, and one I’ve been waiting on for a while. You see, I’ve found that in my experience, I either lose weight or size; never both at the same time. While I’ve dropped a good 7 lbs or so in the last few weeks, I hadn’t noticed my belts needing to be tightened. Now that the weight loss has stalled, sure enough, another belt hole is being used.

It’s funny how this yo-yo between size and weight happens for me, and it’s also funny how predictable and consistent it is. I’m doing all the things I know to do to lose weight/size, and sure enough, it’s just coming right off/down. I think the biggest factor right now is the amount of sleep I’m getting: I’m averaging a solid 8 hours a night right now. That’s about .5 to 1 hour more than I used to get, and not only do I feel more rested and motivated during the day, but it’s helping me lose the weight I’m wanting to lose. I’m still unable to run (but I think I’ll be back to it soon; I do feel the knees are healing nicely!), so I have to be extra good with the food and rest. It’s the only way I can make any progress.

Like I always say: perseverance. It works.

You didn’t gain it overnight…

I have no idea why I picked this image. It just feels fun.

…and you can’t lose it overnight. I have to keep telling this to myself every time I step on the scale and I don’t see the result I’m hoping for. This morning was a good one; I’m at my lowest weight in months, but I’m also on the precipice of finally slipping into the 170’s, and I WANT IT MEOW!!!

At my lowest weight, I was 160 lbs. I wasn’t able to maintain that for long due to some wild eating on vacations, and it’s never gone back down to that level since 2017. I was in the 170’s for most of 2017 and 2018, but in 2019, I want to be back in the 160’s again. To that end, I’ve been eating right, getting a lot of sleep, and doing everything I can outside of exercise to get there. Why not exercise? I have a hurt knee I’m going to visit a doctor for soon, and I’ve been trying to let it heal, only it’s taking too long, and now I fear there may be more serious issues afoot (see what I did there?).

It is possible to lose weight without exercise. I lost over 130 lbs in a year without a single drop of sweat caused by exercise. I know first-hand that it’s possible, and it can even be pretty quick. 10+ lbs/month average weight loss is nothing to sneeze at. However, the last 20 lbs I lost were done through a lot of hard work with running and push-ups. Now, I’m trying to get back into the 160’s without running. It’s proving difficult, but I am seeing progress, so I’m sticking with it. I sincerely hope that I can get back to running soon. I miss it. I don’t miss it like I miss pasta or pizza, but I miss it nonetheless.

It took years to pack it on; it will take months to take it off. I need to remind myself of this often. Like right meow.

Progress Again

Sticking to the Paleo Diet and getting enough sleep has been rewarding me with some more weight and size loss. I was able to go a one belt hole farther on my belt yesterday, and today, I was 2 lbs lighter than yesterday. I looked at my Garmin data for steps this past weekend and found that I had only walked an average of 7000 steps, so it wasn’t like I was walking as much or as far as I thought I was. However, being in the cold definitely burned a lot of calories, so I’m sure that’s where a lot of my calorie deficit came from this past weekend.

The bottom line is that I’m so close to being in the 170’s again, I can taste it. Heck, if I continue to be good this week, I may see 179 lbs (or less!) by Friday! That’s exciting!!! With that said, I’ve said it time and time again: the scale shouldn’t ever be your single source of measure when it comes to your health and physical well-being. There are other things to consider like size (how your clothes fit, getting into smaller sizes), how you feel in the mornings, how much energy you have, mental clarity, and even improvements to your health like lower blood pressure, lower blood sugar, lower cholesterol, and better skin (these are all things I’ve seen happen in my own journey with Whole30/Paleo). However, being in the military, I do have to concern myself with weight, and right now, I’m officially over the height/weight standard by 5 lbs. There is an alternate measure called “Taping” where they measure your waist and neck and compute your BFI, but I don’t want to go that route. I know that the BFI process is being re-worked at the DoD, and I don’t want to start relying on it now only to have it change and then I’d have to do something drastic to get back into regs. I just don’t want to go through that.

So, long story short: I’m at 181 lbs this morning. That’s a full 6 lbs less than I was the morning I left for Fort Hood. I can feel it in my clothes, in the way my trousers fit, and I can see it on my midsection. When I see more definition, I know the fat is going away.

The moral of the story is: consistency. My grandfather always used to say that consistency was key to success. “Keep working, and through determination, you will see success,” he would tell me when I would call him and my grandmother to tell them how I was doing in college. His words come back to me all the time when I consider eating something non-Paleo.

The Weekend Wrap-Up

As I posted last week, this weekend was a three-day field event for me in the National Guard. What that meant for me was not only a difficult food situation, but a lot of activity and burning a lot of calories. For that reason, I was a little more lenient on certain items on my plate when I ate every day.

Our breakfasts consisted of scrambled eggs that were mixed with butter and bacon (with sausage and ham also available). There was typically a selection of either a banana or apple, and a muffin or biscuit of some sort. I skipped the apple or orange juice. I allowed myself the biscuit or muffin on each of the two days I ate breakfast in the field, and it turned out to be helpful.

It was very cold, and my body was burning a lot of extra calories just to keep warm. I also did a lot of walking and running around with a lot of weight on me, so the extra calories were welcome. I ate some of my RXBars and Epic bars for lunches, and sometimes as a snack as required.

Dinner on Friday night was good: it was meatballs, salad, green beans, and mashed potatoes. Again, I ate all of these. I avoided the sweet tea or lemonade, but I did eat the dessert cookie. It was rather small, and again, since the temperatures were forecast to be in the upper 30’s/lower 40’s, I figured some energy might help.

All in all, when I got home, I found that I’d lost 4 lbs from my Thursday morning weigh in. I knew I was losing weight/size while I was out there as my FLC (the vest we wear that holds a lot of our pouches/gear) was getting looser on me. Weighing myself this morning only confirmed my suspicions.

I am fortunate in that my sweet wife, Sherry, made me dinners and lunches for this week even though she is out of town for the first half of this week, so I will be able to continue eating well. I should see another 2-3 lbs drop if I’m lucky.