Friday, 30 March 2012


I sure do like getting new stuff.  My wife has entered the Starbuck's 5k Run for Women race this summer and decided to hit the Running Room for some new shoes and running gear.  She came out with sunglasses, tights, tops, a jacket and of course, running shoes.  She's also signed up for the Learn to Run clinic.  I'm so proud of her for signing up and I know she's going to do great.

Of course, the old adage states that if she goes shopping, so do I hehe, so I got me some new stuff too.

I got a couple new matts for our workout room as well as this wall mount pull up bar which I have yet to assemble.  Also picked up some push up bars there.  Fatboy Kris has led me to the Scooby Workshop site and I've been doing a lot of reading and I'm going to start including some weight lifting workouts on top of my normal cardio.

Then I grabbed this rack and full set of dumbells.  It has 5's, 10's, 15's, 20's, 25's and 30's.  The rack I got as a deal because they never had any left in stock so I took the display model.  There's not a scratch on it and was already assembled for me.  Plus the discount for it being out on the floor already made this a pretty sweet deal.

Now of course, the wife was out getting runners for her race this summer, so I decided to grab myself a nice pair of Nike's for my walks (and someday runs).  These are the Nike Air Pegasus+ 28.

I also decided to pick up a Polar FT7 heart rate monitor as well.  This little baby will tell me a lot more accurately how many calories I'm actually burning as well as if my heart is in the right zone.  Hopefully it'll also tell me if I'm about to have a heart attack while I'm on the elliptical LOL.

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

WEEK 11 - Numbers

Week 11 | March 27, 2010 | Weight: 270.4 | Loss of 2.2 lbs | Total Loss: 40.2 lbs

40.2 pounds lost.  Need I say more?  I was tempted to leave this post at that, but, as my wife reminds me from time to time, I tend to babble on, and on, and on, and on, and on, and on, and.. well you get the idea.  Anyway, I am very pleased to have lost 40.2 pounds.  Forgetting what I even lost this week as that is overshadowed by my current grand total.

I'm a numbers kinda guy.  I was always good with math and even tutored Undergrads with their single variable calculus.  That said, I'm looking at the numbers and I see some interesting stats:

40 pounds lost
30.7 % of my goal
3.63 pounds lost per week average
About 0.5 pounds per day lost average

That's just crazy!

Friday, 23 March 2012


During weight loss, I've learned that fluctuations are normal and to be expected.  A lot of people like to weigh themselves every day and record their gain or loss.  With that comes a lot of fluctuations and that can drive people batty.  One thing I've learned is to not lose heart when the scale goes up because it's GOING to happen.  Whether because you've been overeating or because of the sodium from that giant pizza you ate last night or whatever, you can expect it.  A lot of advice to others to get around worrying so much about day to day fluctuations is to only weigh yourself twice a month or every week.  The problem is, we are a "right now" type of society and looking at the scale is just something that's going to happen.

I've resigned to go ahead and weigh every morning but only record on each Tuesday.  I've come to accept day to day fluctuations and I don't lose any sleep over it.  I record my weekly progress on and I can clearly see the trend there by doing that.  

Take a look at this weekly record from the graph:

As you can see, I've clearly lost some weight and the trend is going in the right direction.  Unfortunately I only started recording daily weight for myself starting in late February, but take a look at this DAILY graph for the past month:

If you look at the points on the graph, you can clearly see that day to day, my weight goes up and down.  Sometimes it goes up by a little or not at all and other times it goes up by a lot.  The important part is that the trend over time is headed in the right direction and THAT is what's important.  Slow and steady wins the race with weight loss, not quick fixes.  Lucky for me, my weigh in day of Tuesday has typically been a day where my weight happened to be down LOL - I count myself lucky for that but it will run out eventually and I'm sure I'll post an official gain as I go downward.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

WEEK 10 - Progress and Friends

Week 10 | March 20, 2012 | Weight: 272.6 | Loss of 5.2 lbs | Total Loss: 38.0 lbs

This was a surprising loss for me this week.  I ate over my calories twice but I am working out regularly.  My current regimen is still Rowing for 20 minutes in the morning, then Elliptical for 6 minutes (I went up a minute LOL), a 3-4 km walk during work when it's not busy and a 2-3 km walk around the neighborhood before dinner in the evenings if it's not too crappy outside.  I'm slowly starting to pay attention to the labels on food now and having a look at my macros and sodium intake as well as cholesterol.  I know a bit later, I'm going to have to start paying closer attention to my sodium which is a bit high for my liking each week and start getting my protein up and fat down a bit.  But all that in good time.  I'm still losing, I have a long way to go and those things will become more important as I go.

I'm also a little surprised that people are starting to notice already.  I've had a couple comments from co-workers and the typical, "How are you doing it?" questions.  I didn't expect to start hearing anything from anyone till I lost 50 pounds at least.  That of course, as I've read, is common - others, especially ones that don't see you everyday, will notice your changes early even if you don't notice them yourself.

These comments from friends, co-workers and even strangers certainly help and I'm very happy to see a few friends now using the web site as well.

It's great to have that kind of support system around and I can only imagine the extra challenge if I were doing this alone.  I'm hoping we'll all succeed together, so, here's to a healthy, and new US!

Sunday, 18 March 2012

St. Patrick's Weekend

This weekend was a fantastic weekend!  The family and I did so much together this weekend that I almost feel like I hadn't rested at all.  My plan was to work out during the weekdays and let my body rest up on the weekends, but it seems that my resting on the weekends are not going so well, but I'm loving it.

The first thing we did together this weekend was to make some yummy St. Paddy's Day shakes.  I was amazed that I actually managed to resist having one.  The kids loved them and loved how their tongues turned green.  It was a simple oreo cookie, vanilla ice-cream, mint extract and food coloring mixture blended up to a nice blizzard.  Quite the treat and packed with calories I'm certain.

On Saturday, my wife and I took what she's been calling our power walks.  It's a 2.5 km walk around our neighborhood where she is almost in a jog and I'm sweating my butt off to keep up.  She was so pumped about it this weekend, she even broke out into a full blown jog.  I told her to keep going and I'll keep power walking and so, off she went. It was awesome to see her go!  I managed to meet her back at the house only a few minutes behind.

This Sunday, we took the kids (the dog always goes with us) up to the nearby park for a 4 km walk.  It was a bit cold but the snow is almost all gone now and the fresh air was very nice.  That was a new record for me for distance and I felt great.

After our walk, we came home, had lunch and decided to go to the wave pool.  I hadn't been swimming in years and I was wondering to myself if I still knew how lol.  A few hours of frolicking and swimming with the wife and kids and I could feel the muscles in my body starting to rebel so I knew it was time to give them a much deserved rest.

Now for a nice relaxing evening watching the season finale of The Walking Dead with my lovely wife.  I just hope I'm not too exhausted to get up and do my regular workout on the rower tomorrow morning.  Oh and I found the proper power adapter for the elliptical so that's working just great again!

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Water Update

I thought it was time I did an update on my fluid intake.  As mentioned previously, I've been able to completely eliminate all other forms of fluid from my diet except for the weekends where I'll partake in a few rum and diet pepsi (caffeine free) to keep my calories low.

It's been quite successful and I have come to just naturally reach for a bottle of water now.  We used to buy three and four cases of pepsi in the past but the stuff isn't even in the house anymore.  My fridge space is now occupied by water bottles and I keep 3 full 18 liter water tanks nearby for our water cooler.  My current water intake is about 7-8 500 ml bottles each day now.

I asked myself in the past would I actually come to enjoy drinking water?  The answer is still no, but it's more of a sub-conscience choice to just drink it at this point.  I no longer have to force it down and I don't miss the other drinks at all.  Come to think of it, I don't miss any of the old bad habits - like fast food.  I am happy to say I am on the right track at this stage in the game.

The kids are drinking water and milk exclusively now - we keep only skim milk around as it's low in fat compared to the others yet still has plenty of calcium and other milk goodness for the kids.  Heck, we even gave the kids their choice for takeout as a treat tonight vs a home cooked meal, and they actually chose the home cooked meal.  3 months ago, that would have been unheard of!

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

WEEK 9 - Power! Ooops.

Week 9 | March 13, 2012 | Weight: 277.8 | Loss of 2.3 lbs | Total Loss: 32.8 lbs

9 weeks in and I'm happy to post another great loss.  My weekly goal currently is to lose a minimum of 2 pounds and so far I have a fairly good track record.  I've been reading lots of other bloggers and see their hiccups of small gains and small losses followed by larger losses and this tells me that my ride is probably not going to keep going as smoothly as this so I have been getting myself ready for that dreaded weigh in where I gain a pound for whatever magical reason.

I finished putting the elliptical together last night and wouldn't you know it, I can't find the AC adapter for the display.  My wife found one last night and we tried it and it seemed to work but then this morning, while I was rowing, she decided to hop on it and about 15 minutes in, the screen went black and it won't come back on.  I'm not sure if we've blown it, or if it was just the wrong power pack and it's fried.  I'll put a meter on the power pack tonight after work and see if it's still outputting juice.  If it is, then I'm worried we've blown the screen.  If it's just the power pack, then I'll call up Icon and see if I can get them to tell me what size power pack the thing needs.  It's not written on the elliptical and naturally, I've lost the manual LOL.  It's a Proform Crosswalk 8.0.

The weather is starting to get better here and we've seen greater than 5 degrees celsius each day all week.  This has given us some opportunity to do family walks which we've been doing religiously for the past week now getting in at least 3 km each time.  I've also been trying to keep up on my walk during lunch at work when it's not overly busy.  The snow is melting quite fast and I can start walking in shoes rather than big old winter boots.

I'm hoping we can get the elliptical fixed as I was really looking forward to adding it to my regimen.

Saturday, 10 March 2012

Proud of My Wife

Today my wife officially hit her 20 pounds lost mark and she is super excited about that.  Her ultimate goal is to lose between 40 and 45 pounds so this marks a significant milestone for her.  It is especially tough for her because I am so much bigger than her and I have so much more to lose that each week she is losing only a couple of pounds I'm losing many more.

I encourage her to look at the percentages because she's almost at 50% lost and I am somewhere around 23% lost and this makes her feel better LOL.  Regardless, I am very proud of her for sticking with it and doing this weight loss journey together.

This morning I caught her in her closet trying on clothes that she hasn't fit into in years or has never fit into since she bought it.  Case in point, she purchased a fantastic little police uniform for a halloween party a couple of years ago and she never fit into it.  It hung in her closet ever since.  Today, I think we can call it a "fit".  Good job baby!!

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Changing it Up

I've discovered that I really enjoy walking.  I even managed to convince my wife to join in.  Her workout routine is normally in the evenings after work so I knew if I wanted her to come walk with me during that time, I'd have to convince her to do some workouts in the morning.  She is not a morning person.

Anyway, yesterday we took the kids and the dog and did a 2 km walk around the neighborhood and it turns out, everyone loved it.  So much so we're going to try and make it a regular thing.  This also means that the Kinect is going to be taken over by my wife in the morning so I'm left with only the Rower.  This is ok by me and we tried it this morning.  She even commented that she felt more alert this morning than regular mornings.

It also motivates me more to get the elliptical put together sooner than later.  I also decided to take a brisk walk during my work day around lunch time.  For the past 2 days now, I've done a 3 km walk around downtown and I'm pretty sure I'm going to continue that.  I even took a pretty picture of the area where I walked.  All in all, my exercise regimen is consisting of (including the elliptical that will be assembled shortly):

Morning - 10 minutes of the Elliptical followed by 20 minutes on the Rowing Machine
Afternoon - 3 km brisk walk around my work area
Evening - 2-3 km walk around the neighborhood with my family before I make dinner

I never thought I'd enjoy moving so much being a desk jockey for the past 20 years and barely making it from one floor to the next but there it is and I'm loving it!

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

WEEK 8 - Accomplishments, Sort of...

Week 8 | March 6, 2012 | Weight: 280.1 | Loss of 5.1 lbs | Total Loss: 30.5 lbs

8 Weeks is a pretty good milestone.  I don't think I've ever sustained any sort of diet this long, but then again, this isn't a diet is it.  It's a lifestyle change and I will admit, I am really enjoying it!  I love the meals we are cooking at home and I don't miss the takeout or the restaurants at all.  Heck our home cooked meals are rivaling what we ate at those places in terms of taste.

I am VERY happy to see numbers like this but unfortunately, I can't take full credit.  The new Withings scale is about half a pound in the difference between itself and our old scale.  Still, this is a loss and I'll take it.  I REALLY enjoy the new scale but that's probably because I'm such a tech head.  For most people, the novelty will wear off after a week or two and it'll just become a regular scale.  That said, I did make the 25 pound badge club on Lose It and I'm happy about that as well.  You have to have lost the 25 pounds for a bit of time it seems before they actually give you the badge.

In about 4 pounds, I will be the lightest I have been in a long, long time.  Over the past two years, I've been fluctuating between this weight and being over 300 pounds during fad diets and various workouts so I can see my journey from this point forward to be the real test.  Once I lose another 15, I'll be the lightest I've been in 8 years and I'm looking forward to seeing that.

As it stands, my routine has been simple, keep counting every calorie I put in my mouth - even the cooking spray that goes into the fry pan for my egg whites or the extra two ounces of meat loaf I stole from my son's plate when cleaning up gets counted.  Keeping those numbers under budget and working out 30 minutes each morning is my recipe for success so far.

Sunday, 4 March 2012


I decided to take a walk this weekend whilst the wife and daughter went to the salon.  I had no plan really and didn't know how far I would go.  I downloaded a new app onto my iphone called Pedometer Ultimate which is just an upgraded version of the Pedometer I downloaded the other day.  It counts your steps and uses GPS to track your progress.  I took my son and the dog to a nearby park and started walking.  It felt like a prelude to what running would be like in the future and I must say, I really enjoyed it.  Turns out when I finished the walk, I had almost covered 3 km!

The weather is terrible here and there's a lot of snow still on the ground but I'm going to try my best to make this a regular thing. 

As for the weekend, it was terrible!  I overate again on both Friday and Saturday nights.  I gotta get these weekends under control.  So far it seems to be panning out over the course of the week but I have to start focusing on these weekend binges before they turn into habit.  After this past weekend, I think it's going to get easier as I won't be doing as much socializing.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Calories, Workouts and Fluids

I've been making sure I get up early enough every day during the weekdays to get in my 30 minutes of workouts now.  I do about 10 minutes on the Kinect Your Shape game and then follow that by 20 solid minutes on the Rowing Machine.  I'm still working up a huge sweat and feel bushed when done.  This is my signal to know I'm on the right track and the amount of workout is a good fit.  Once I start finding this a little easier I'll up it and include Elliptical time as well.  

My wife has been doing dancing every day for her workout but I was unable to convince her to drink some milk after her workout as she really needs to get more calcium into her body.  I did some more research and the interwebs have told me that even drinking chocolate milk (as long as you're keeping those calories under control) can offer calcium and many other nutrients.  That said I managed to get her to start drinking half a cup of chocolate milk after workouts - so WOOT for Calcium!  Plus the protein helps repair damaged muscle which occurs often during strenuous workouts.

The other day I learned my wife was actually getting VERY hungry through out the day.  I'm quite glad she brought this up so we could find out what was wrong.  When you are using the web site, you get to specify your goal loss.  The maximum is 2 pounds per week which is a serious calorie deficit and should only be selected if you're over 200 pounds.  Unfortunately, a lot of people go for this option to help them lose weight faster - THIS IS A MISTAKE PEOPLE!  Do NOT starve yourself to lose weight.  You can't sustain it, you start eating below your BMR and you plateau, get frustrated and quit.  We adjusted my wife's goal loss to 1 pound per week.  She learned to accept the lengthier time it's going to take but her calorie deficit isn't as bad and she isn't hungry any more and, you guessed it, she is STILL losing weight!  

I can't stress this enough - Educate, Educate, Educate yourself on this journey!