Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Day 3 Calorie Budgeting

Day 3

Calorie Budgeting

Day number 3 is almost in the books and there's no slowing down! There are so many diets out there that sometimes it's hard to decide what's best. This multi-billion dollar weight loss industry hopes that most people never figure out that it's really not that hard and their products are not at all necessary. Now I understand that some people have medical conditions that make them gain weight, or take medicine that make it almost impossible to lose weight. But for most people the solution doesn't cost anything other than your food budget, your time to exercise, and a choice to commit. We'll actually save money on our food budget. And yes we'll still eat out occasionally. I know someone who has spent hundreds of dollars on everything from Nutri-System to Alli to Slim Fast even some other really expensive pills they found on the shelves at Wal-Mart. They're still struggling with weight. For me it all comes down to calorie management. I get 1500 calories a day. I can use them in any way I want, but once they're gone, that's it. It really forces wise choices. I look at it like money. Every morning I have 1500 to spend and I need to make sure I have enough to make it through the day without running out before dinner.
If I have enough left over I'll treat myself to something I love. For instance: After Courtney and I finish our walk tonight I plan on having a soft serve cone from McDonalds. YES, McDonalds! After dinner I still have 300 calories remaining, and a soft serve cone from McDonalds is on average only 150 calories (McDonalds nutrition facts). I get to have ice cream and not feel guilty about it! That's the beauty of counting calories and exercising.

Today I had bananas and cream instant oatmeal for breakfast---140 calories, for lunch I went through the drive through...YES, Drive-through!!! At Wendy's I chose a small Chili (no cheese—I could have had cheese, but I decided not to spend the extra 40 calories) for 190 calories and a 5 piece chicken nugget—230 Calories. For two bucks I had a very satisfying meal, and it brought my total for the day to 560. At around 3:00pm I had a snack of a chocolate chip granola bar—170 calories. So heading into dinner I had consumed 730 calories. I still had 770 left. And I hadn't been hungry all day! For dinner I cooked a chicken breast, a half ear of corn, and a small baked potato with sour cream! Yes—Sour Cream! The Chicken was 250, the corn 70, and the small potato with sour cream was only 150. 470 calories for dinner is not bad. I was very satisfied, not stuffed, but full. So, 770 minus 470 is 300 and that's where I am right now. After a soft serve ice cream cone from McDonalds I'll still have 150 left, and I probably wont use them before bed. I could have had a mid-morning snack for 150 and it would have been perfect! For those that don't think a diet that includes the words sour cream and ice cream and drive-through don't work, just wait for my weigh-in updates. It's such a liberating way to lose weight. As with all weight loss plans, physical activity really speeds up the process, and right now all I can do is walk. But soon I'll be getting back to the YMCA and into a racquetball court! And back on those treadmills and bikes and back on those weight machines! I'm taking it real slow. I feel much worse now than four years ago, even though I'm only five pounds heavier than when I started in March 2004. Back then I immediately started working out at the YMCA and walking at least a mile. Last night I could barely make it a quarter mile. It just takes some time.

In the mail-box today I found two magazines. Living XL and King Size. King Size is a clothing catalog and Living XL is something a little different. Living XL is a specialty catalog featuring devices that help make an obese persons life a little easier. They have heavy duty chairs, scales that go to 1000 pounds, patio furniture guaranteed not to break, all kinds of extenders, and even a device that helps one clean their behind. I'm not kidding. Everything an overweight person could use to make day to day life easier. I've never ordered anything from them, and I never will. If I did I would feel like I was settling on this size. Anyone that knows me might think I've settled already, having been over 400 pounds almost my entire adult life, but I haven't. I've always wanted to lose the weight, I've always dreamed of what it would be like to sit in any chair without fear of it breaking, to go to an amusement park with my kids and fit on every ride, or to just go to a restaurant without worrying if they'll have “fat friendly” seating. So why haven't I done it? I'm hoping my psychology major daughter will figure that out for me, because it is deeply psychological. But I know one thing, a decision can be a very powerful thing. A solid “enough” decision can trump psychological road blocks any day. And excuses don't stand a chance. Let's make this the time we did something special, let's make this a stand once and for all...And this time there's no stopping half way...We're driving this bus without a reverse gear!

This blog is my way of keeping myself motivated, holding myself accountable, and staying on track all the way. I believe it will make a difference for me, my beautiful daughters, and my amazing wife. It if it helps you in any way, then that's a bonus! Thank you for reading and giving me your support.

Good Choices,


  1. For me, it was a choice to actually address teh psychological/emotional stuff I KNEW was there but didn't want to look at while simultaneously saying ENOUGH to the weight! I am certain if I had not done it this way, I wouldn't still be going at it 1 yr later, nor would I still be battling to get past my 65 lb hump. I would have quit by now. A little slower this way, but I am confident that my reasons for gaining in the first place, won't cause me to re-gain! Not this time, no way!!

  2. Anonymous again...confession...I am anonymous because I am computer illiterate and don't know how to set up an account...anyway, I found out about you through FB...Sara Walton Steele told me about you. Your blogging is witty as well as motivating...thanks again!

  3. I spotted your story on AOL today and I'm reading your blogs from the beginning. They are truly inspiring! I do not have much weight to lose - probably about 20 lbs., but I seem to struggle because I try to make this too hard signing up for this and that and not totally following any of it. Your blog puts it so simply and is giving me just the push I needed right now.

  4. Read about you on AOL. I am starting from your very first post but you have my interest so I will catch up with the present soon enough.

  5. Thanks for the menus and the calorie count. It is showing me that I can do this and enjoy the foods I like. I am keeping a diary now of your menus so on days I don't find time to do it myself I can use your meals.

  6. Thanks Sean, for showing me a path to weight loss. I've begun reading your daily blog from Day 1. Here at Day 3's entry, I am officially establishing my committment. I'm 5'6" and currently weigh 235. I'm built like a bowling ball and my face in photos reminds me of a fat thumb print. I, too, have deprived myself of so many fun events for example going to the beach. I'm always in fear that someone is going to harpoon me and throw me back into the water, or some kids will accuse me of stashing their beach ball under my shirt.
    My goal is to lose a perfect C-note. I'll give myself one year at 2 pounds per week which I believe to be a realistic endeavor.
    Beginning right now, I'm going to open an account at your calorie bank, walk some miles in your shoes, and make certain I get ingest the necessary water each day - starting tomorrow, of course since I've already spent my calories for the day; I think that happened the instant I inhaled breakfast.
    Your "before" and "after" pictures sealed my fate. Seriously, thanks for paving the road (I hesitate to call it a rocky road for obvious reasons).
    Good luck to you and your family as I do this for me and my family.


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