Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Barriers to Progress

I'm calling this a pre-week, where I just get the feel for the idea of working out and eating right. I'm doing this so that I can ease myself into the 90 day challenge. It won't even last a full week--maybe I'll start my 90 days this Saturday or Sunday. If I started today or Monday I'd already feel like a failure from how pathetic my workout has been and from how horrible my diet has been. I'd have given up this journey too but this pre-week is also like a "cheat week"; a week of instant forgiveness and learning where the pitfalls are going to be and how I plan to work around them.

Already I see that temptation for bad food is great. At work co-workers will offer me thier unwanted fast food fries (and how can I resist when it's complimented with Raising Caine's sauce?). At this very moment there is a half a bar of chocolate with almonds sitting on my desk--a cheritable donation by a co-worker--and I am going to eat it. After I officially begin my 90 day challenge I won't be allowed to cave. I'll have to reject their leftovers. Potlucks will be veritable minefields of unknown calories I'll have to navigate. I won't always be at the office or be able to go home for lunch and will need to plan to eat in the vans. Fast food will be the most accessible at work.

Home won't be much easier either. I'll have to contend with daily fatigue pulling me away from making my own meal instead of eating out. The meals will be boring, bland, and uncomfortable; begging to be dressed up in butters, creams, and delicious fats. I'll fight with my wife over what horrible meal to make next, always pulling her from the same temptations I find myself lured by, hopeing she can drown out the siren's call just long enough for another day to pass. Will we be strong enough?

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

On Motivation

I see motivation as being the hardest thing about losing weight. It's dynamic, covering every action of the process. First one must have the motivation to get up, then to get dressed. Next is stepping outside and moving forward or just moving, period. I've awoken in the morning determined to go for a run only to slide back into bed and smash snooze a couple dozen times. I've even made it to getting dressed and ready for a run but back out last second, turn on the news, and zone out until it's time to get ready for work.

So how can I find the motivation to succeed in working out?

I've made the steps below to build and maintain motivation. I'll stick to it to see what works, what doesn't, and tweek it as time goes on.

Step 1: Create a journal to track progress

Step 2: Make your plans to lose weight public

Step 3: Find at least one supportive partner in the process

Step 4: Establish a set time and place for working out

Step 5: Have a plan for the work outs.

Step 6: Create a meal plan to follow so that you don't cheat

Step 7: Know what you will do in the event of illness or injury

Step 8: How will you plan for bad weather?

Step 9: Take up a fun, active sport or activity to stave off burnout

Step 10: Embrace the pain and hunger to come

Monday, May 27, 2013


This is the beginning of a 90 day challenge to lose weight. If you have stumbled across this blog please visit back each week as I make the journey toward achieving my fitness goals.

I've decided to make this journal to give myself some accountability for my actions. I want to lose weight and for the past few years my actions have run counter to this desire. Currently I weigh 215.8 lbs which is considerably more than I should be. Ideally I would like to weigh 160 lbs. Hopefully by documenting my successes and troubleshooting my failures I can gain some motivation and steamroll some momentum toward finally defeating my weight problem. 

My plan is simple: eat right and exercise. This is what we always hear will make us lose weight. Intuitively it can be thought that the way I gained fat was by eating horribly and being lazy so doing the opposite of this would be the way to lose fat. Obviously there is a lot more to this but I don't want to get bogged down in complicated science.

Eat Right: Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. Limit fatty, sugary, and starchy foods. Take in enough proteins. Drink a lot of water.

Exercise: High Intensity Cardio 3x a week alternating with lifting weights 3x a week. Active rest on whichever day isn't cardio or weights.

Ideally I should be burning more calories through daily tasks and exercise than I consume throughout the day. Seems simple enough. Now the hard part is sticking to it...