Friday, May 18, 2012

We don't need no stinking exercises!

Actually, yes.  We do.  Or at least, I do.  You might not, but I can tell you without a doubt that I do.

Why?  Several reasons:  I don't want to be out of breath walking up the stairs.  I don't want to die at 50.  I don't like to jiggle. I like muscles.  I hate being fat, and I really like cute clothes.

And there's another reason, which I discovered today.  I can limit my intake ("can" being a relative term, here) and keep under my LoseIt! calorie budget, but if I want to see real action on the scale, I need to exercise, too.  How do I know that?  (besides the fact that I'm 45 and live in America, Land of Health Information and 5 gazillion overweight people)  Because the first several pounds actually did come off pretty quickly.  I stayed within my calorie budget, and for the most part, each morning I woke up a little lighter than the morning before.  Great, right?  Think about it, though.  That early weight comes off easily because ... well, because I am 100 pounds overweight (possibly more, but we can discuss that another time).  Yes, I am literally 100 pounds overweight.  It's hard to say out loud, but it's true.  And when someone is that much overweight, just limiting their calories does actually make the scale start to change.

But guess what?  Now that that first 13 or so pounds is gone, I have to work harder!  Grr!  But here's the surprising part -- I actually WANT to work harder!  What a shock.  There really is something to be said for momentum.

What I've been doing so far is walking with my neighbor or by myself 4-6 times a week.  I'm also doing things like "park farther from the door" when I go grocery shopping and stuff.  And I'm doing (or attempting to do) the situp series in the post below this one.  I know it says it's a 14-day Abs Challenge, but I'm trying to just do it.  Forget the 14 days.  I'm also trying to do it more than once a day.  Like if I'm watching TV, I drop down and do at least 3 of those boxes.  Wanna hear something sad?  I was so out of shape when I started doing the situps that I could actually feel the exercise in my arms --  you know the arms you bend to put your hands behind your neck to do situps?  Yeah, that.  Just keeping my arms there to do 25 situps exercised my biceps, triceps, and deltoids.  Ironic and sad.  You know what's not sad?  I got a really nice email from one of my brothers who saw I was doing five minutes (5 minutes! "What a joke" I thought!) on LoseIt and emailed me his story about starting to do pushups.  He told me he just started with 10.  Then he increased by a few.  At one point, he increased to 20 and it was too much, so he dropped back down to 17.  Now he does 50 when he has a couple minutes to himself in his office!  That was so encouraging; I cannot begin to tell you.  Now I'm happy to post my 5 minutes of situps because I know that it will increase -- and soon -- and even 5 minutes is a good thing :)

A quick word on the 100 lbs.  I am fairly confident that this is an accurate figure.  I weighed 138 when we got married.  I was in decent aerobic/cardio shape, but actually had no muscle tone.  So it's possible a good weight for me could have even been lower. (or higher, 'cause muscle weighs more)  I did go to Jenny Craig once in college, and based on my bone structure, etc., they said I should weigh 131.  That sounds pretty low and I'm a LOT older now, so for the time being, my "goal weight" on LoseIt! is 145.  We'll see if that's still accurate and good once I get there :)

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