Day 712, 713, and 714
Manipulating The Metabolism and Weight Limits No Longer Apply
I’m still not liking this sporadic posting business. It changes the perspective, and becomes more generalized as I try to recall specifics from each day. As my experiences stand out, the idea is that I’ll remember and write about the most important tidbits. I guess it’s an evolution that really couldn’t be helped as I grow and become focused on several different things other than writing a daily post. But trust me, it’s really a tough little adjustment period for me. After being so prolific, nearly two years of writing everyday, that personal account stands and isn’t going anywhere—so there’s no need for me to change the name of this blog to the “When I Get A Chance Diary of A Winning Loser.”
Saturday morning came at 7:50am, early for me, especially since I didn’t have a location broadcast, but fine---considering I hit the pillow at a decent hour Friday night. I stumbled to the kitchen to start the coffee and grab a banana, I wanted to wake up a little before I started cooking breakfast. Breakfast makes a big difference and I’ve written many times about its importance level in my life. I was never a “breakfast person,” but I quickly realized from early on that everyone was right when they said “It’s the most important meal of the day.” But why? Let me explain…
We must because we need to break-the-fast. Our metabolism depends on it, just like I’ve convinced myself I need coffee to function in the morning, the metabolism refuses to start working efficiently without fuel. A couple of friends of mine, Melissa Walden—fitness and life coach, and Dr. Amy of the Ranch Chiropractic Wellness Center, have both shared with me the same metabolism analogy of “The Wood Burning Stove.” I know I’ve written about it before, but I can’t seem to find the original excerpt—don’t need it, I’ll write it fresh:
Just like a wood burning stove needs good wood in order to burn hot, the metabolism needs good fuel to burn hot and fast. (First of all, imagine it’s freezing outside) The metabolism is your wood-burning stove. After a long night, the stove needs some logs to get the fire and heat going. After a few hours, you’ll need to put some more wood in the stove to keep it burning hot. But don’t put too much (overeat), because then the fire will suffocate itself, not burning as efficiently…the heat will slow down at that point. But if we keep throwing good wood on the fire every three or four hours, the fire never stops burning hot and fast, until late into our nightly slumber…but then we get up, feel a little chill (hunger), add a log or two to the stove (breakfast), and we’re burning hot again. As your good choices evolve along the way, you’ll realize—like I did, that certain foods (fruits, veggies, lean meats) are like premium wood, perfect for really getting the fire hot—and certain foods (typical junk food fare—The kind that occasionally were a part of my journey in the beginning, because remember—good choices must evolve from what we like and normally eat) are like cold-wet-green wood, the kind that will burn eventually or maybe not, if it does, it’s at a much slower rate—producing less heat. So there you have it, our metabolism is a wood burning stove…perfect analogy, thank you Melissa and Amy!
It was March 30th, 2009 when I published this excerpt about metabolism. Keep in mind, I’m not a doctor or expert, far from it!! I simply have combined advice from experts with my own experiences along this weight loss road:
I've really been concentrating on spreading out my calories more evenly throughout the day, you know, to keep the fire in my “wood burning stove” burning hot. The metabolism is a tricky thing. I use to think that the metabolism was something you were just born with and completely unable to change. I thought that some of us were blessed with a really fast metabolism and some were unfortunately “blessed” with a slow metabolism. While you'll find some truth in that, a slow metabolism doesn't have to remain slow. I've learned that exercise, water consumption, and eating frequently all have the power to act like a “metabolism dial” that you can adjust up several notches. It just so happens that all of my former bad behaviors with food and lack of movement was a perfect recipe for a sluggish metabolism. Oh how much time I wasted being depressed and negative about losing weight because I had a naturally slow metabolism, and all the while my metabolism was yelling “Hey, help me help you!” and “It's called H2O, look it up.” and “If you would eat smaller portions maybe I wouldn't feel so smothered down here.” and “How long has it been since you really exercised...well that's too long.” That's right, my metabolism was a heckler that I refused to acknowledge for many years. Instead I would sit and be jealous of the naturally thin people with super-human metabolisms, looking out the window as they would run by with their workout pants and water bottle. “Crazy over-achievers,” I thought. I now pride myself on slowly becoming one of them. I don't even necessarily have to be an over-achiever, just an achiever, that'd be just fine with me. I'm fitting the description of an “achiever” everyday, one day at a time right?
Jan has discovered the power she has over her metabolism. Sometimes, when the scale isn’t moving—the solution is to eat more. When you think of it in terms of the wood-burning stove, it makes sense---perfectly. Here’s what Jan writes:
“Just wanted to share my news. I have written before and I have taken your advice. I was on a 2-week plateau and was not moving up or down. I hate breakfast, but I started eating cereal last week to see if that would really help. I have to tell you, I weighed in this am and I lost 3 pounds. YEAH!! I started at 267 1/2 and stopped at 252 1/2. I am now at 249 1/2. I broke into the 240's. I am on a natural high!!!! Thank you for all your advice. My final goal is 155, so I have a ways to go, but I know it is one pound at a time. Thanks again, Jan”
Congratulations Jan! That’s awesome news, keep it up—and soon you’ll be at 155—exactly where you’re headed my friend, and you’ll never want to miss breakfast again—I think you’re already there!! I’m very happy for you!
After Saturday morning’s breakfast (an egg white scramble with veggies on a Joseph’s pita), I headed to the YMCA for the hour-long spinning class at 9:15am. This time I knew exactly how long I was “in.” It had been a good long time since I made this a Saturday morning priority, and since I didn’t have a work schedule other than personal projects, it was on! I felt powerful on that cycle, like I could do anything---light-years from where I came. I tried to imagine old Sean doing this, and seriously---that was a ridiculous thought, because 505 pound Sean would have known better than to even try, besides—there’s probably a weight limit on those things. That’s a cool idea—that there really isn’t a weight limit that applies to me at this point, unless it’s made for a child. I like that, oh wow—I really love that!
After an amazing steak dinner, featuring a potato AND corn (picture below), I know—double starch---again, not perfect…Never have been, but that plate checked in at 460 calories, well within my calorie budget. I agree, it would have been better with something green—maybe grilled asparagus or fresh frozen green beans. Oh boy, wow---did that become an issue or what? The whole canned green bean debate of 2010. The canned is absolutely full of sodium, unless I try the low or no sodium variety…Hmmm. Well, Just so you know, in my freezer right now, you will find fresh-frozen green beans. I’m looking forward to them immensely!
Usually I would just call a one-hour spinning class good enough, and think about my workout for the next day, but not Saturday—No, instead I made my way to the trail for a late night 5K walk/jog, but mostly power walk. I absolutely rocked in the workout department Saturday. I’m so proud!
I made my way to Stillwater on Sunday afternoon for a nice visit with mom, grandma, and my Aunt Kelli. Kelli is my aunt, but as I’ve said—we’re only three years apart and were raised like siblings really, so I occasionally refer to her as “sis,” especially on her blog or facebook. The visit was fantastic, absolutely wonderful really…and it wasn’t long before I headed home to immerse myself in thought, as I continue working on other projects.
This is what’s so tough about not posting daily. That’s it for Sunday? Really? I did eat well, staying within my calorie budget, but I didn’t workout—opting for a “rest day,” which sounds so permissible and normal, but really---I’m not fooling myself. It only takes 12 minutes to do a set of non-weighted strength training exercises…I could have and should have done at least that. How can I make myself feel better? I worked out twice yesterday! There…I feel better, but not really.
Monday found me in spinning class once again, 50 minutes this time. I didn’t even know we had a 50-minute class. I made sure to ask at the start, “Uh, excuse me—I want to mentally prepare myself…how long is this class again? ---Oh, 50 minutes, that’s strange, but OK…Let’s go!”
My dinner Monday night after the spinning workout was over the top incredible. I had a little over 700 calories remaining for the day---so I used them with dinner and, get this---desert! See the pictures below!!! Yes my friend, this is what it looks like to lose weight eating real food, in real life, everyday situations. Grilled chicken marinara topped with mozzarella on a bed of spaghetti for the main course---and desert? You ready for this? A deliberately smaller scone…hold on, what does that mean you ask? The scone, made the way the package describes---calls for it to be bigger, by almost double. This scone was made smaller with fewer calories, about 120 for the scone, 50 calories for the strawberries and sugar, and another 20 for the Cool Whip Lite---or 190 calories of absolute incredibleness. That’s not a word, I don’t think…maybe it can be, yep—I think so.
I regularly feature new weight loss bloggers in these writings and occasionally feature ones that I really enjoy. Today, it’s a new weight loss blogger! Welcome Jessica! She writes:
“I literally stumbled onto your blog last night and I'm completely blown away by your progress. You are such an inspiration to so many (and to me!!) I've recently started my journey (July 1) and I have right around 100 lbs to lose. I would be so honored if you would link to my blog and even stop by to say hello. You seem like such a down to earth person and you've come such a long way. When I read blogs like yours, my journey doesn't seem quite so daunting.....thanks for being so open about your experiences!” Find her here: http://healthyfor100.blogspot.com/
I feel so blessed. Thank you for reading! Goodnight and…
Saturday morning breakfast!
My “double starch” dinner. I completely agree—it would have been much better with some green in there! Perhaps some frozen fresh or fresh green beans! ;)
After I posted a picture of my blood donation, Tammy, a regular reader, sent me a picture of her giving blood!! I just started donating in the last year, as my weight and the resulting high blood pressure always held me back…but Tammy, oh my—she’s been devoted for a long time!!! Tammy is a 10-gallon donor and that’s amazing! If you have a picture of you giving the gift of life, please---send it to me and I’ll feature it here. Thank you Tammy for the picture!
With my lovely grandmother on Sunday!
She’s so beautiful! When she says “Don’t you lose another pound,” I know she says it with love!
Breakfast at work…so good! This is two whole eggs with mushrooms on a 60 calorie Joseph’s pita. A fantastic 205-calorie breakfast! I could have used egg whites instead and added cheese---and had a similar calorie count…just a choice.
I can’t think of a better way to spend almost 700 calories (for the entire meal, not just desert). I rarely eat desert, but this was an exception to the rule. It was an amazing calorie value!
Today’s featured before picture. Wow…we would have to make that face painted logo a little smaller today!