Extreme weight loss is possible, apparently

Tough Money Love was kind enough to stop by with a comment on my last post to tell me that I was making things too hard on myself.

He provided a lead to a guest post he did over at Lazy Man and Health. He lost 52 pounds in 136 days, and has kept them off for almost a year and a half. That’s over 2 1/2 pounds per week for almost twenty weeks.

How did he do it?  He limited himself to 1,500 calories a day by eating several smallish meals spread throughout the day, and did moderate exercise in the morning.

His free website of choice for calorie-counting and was FitDay.com.  I went over there to sign up for an account, and by their calculations (using my height, weight, gender, and activity level) they said I was burning about 2,800 calories per day.  Since my weight has been relatively constant over the past few months, one could assume that I’m taking in that amount per day.

Taking in only 1,500 calories per day would mean cutting my intake nearly in half, but I’d be losing weight at about the same rate that Mr. Tough Money Love did.  These kinds of results would support the notion that the amount you eat is far more important than how much you exercise.  It’s hard to argue with the results it can bring.

It gives me hope that I can achieve my weight loss goal, and also that NCN can hit his, too.

(But I’ll still keep exercising, though:  I got my gold Wii Fit Bank for working out a total of 40 hours! 😉 )

Mixed in some yoga in my Wii Fit routine tonight — plus a cool website

Three nights in a row with 30 minutes or more logged in on Wii Fit … better than the past few months anyway.

Mixed in a little bit of yoga — Sun Salutation and Half Moon baby! — as well as an in-place run around the happy island.  Just about missed completing the tilt-the-board game.

My wife found a site that produces Wii Fit workout routines called, aptly, Wii Fit Routine.  It has a number of different types of routines with different lengths and different difficulties.  It also can be used to generate workouts tailored for specific goals: endurance, strength, flexibility, and balance.  There are a few other extras:  recipes, articles, and the like, as well as goal-tracking for weight, BMI, and other things.

Definitely worth a peek.  And it’s free!

Some more Wii Fit, but need to avoid candy

Work is pretty evil as far as candy goes. I don’t have to look very far for free, bottomless supplies of sweets. There are at least three places — no, make that four — at work that I can pick up some Sourheads®, some bite-sized chocolate bars, Twizzlers®, whatever. Forget the healthy stuff on my desk — sugar is what gets me going.

I’m going to postulate for a second here.  I eat pretty much whatever’s available to me.  If I have a box of Stroopwafels, a pack of gum, a 2-liter of soda, or a six-pack of Saranac, I just consume it until it’s gone.  (Well, the beer I’ll stop at three or so per day.  Thank goodness my wife hides the beer and doles it out to me.)

Much like what NCN found, stuff that’s just there gets eaten.  No really good reason beyond that.

But on the bright side, I did do another 31 minutes on Wii Fit tonight, and got another perfect score on the soccer ball heading game.  I found last night that I slept better after some exercise.  Hopefully that will repeat tonight. 🙂

Cracked out Wii Fit for the first time in a while

And it didn’t even make a snide comment at me!  Probably was speechless because it thought I was dead.

Thirty-one minutes of Wiixercise:  11 minutes of Hula-Hoop® (no, there’s no video), 13 minutes of rhythmic boxing, a couple games of soccer ball heading, one round of table tilting the balls down the holes, and one game of penguin slide.

Wii Fit wouldn’t let me make a 2 1/2 month goal so I made a three-month goal to lose 14 pounds, which is about the same as my other short-term goal of getting down to 235 pounds by the end of the year.

NCN has a goal so I have one too

Thanks NCN for being man enough to admit that you’re starting anew with your goals.  I probably wouldn’t have done that.

I need to do this too.  I’m at 247 pounds, which is six pounds heavier than I was when I began this blog.  My original goal was to hit 151 pounds by May of next year.  The correct assessment of my progress toward this goal is:  Fat Chance.

So, well, I have to readjust my goals.  I e-mailed NCN to see if we could be accountable to one another, and he’s up for it, so we’ll post and spur one another on to good deeds.  Here are my new goals:

  • Down to 235 pounds by the end of the year (Thanksgiving and Christmas are in there, so this probably isn’t as easy as it sounds)
  • Down to 200 pounds by this time next year

So there you go.  Let’s try this again!

Is the key to weight loss exercise or eating less?

Jim and I read this Time article at about the same time:

Why exercise won’t make you thin

(A friend on Facebook pointed me to it.)  The article suggests that exercise has comparatively little to do with weight loss. What does make the difference is simply eating less.  The calorie-burning effect of exercise is marginalized or negated by a few things:

  • Replacing 10 pounds of fat with muscle only results in an extra 40 calories per day burned.
  • Exercising doesn’t burn as many calories as you might think.
  • People tend to eat more than they should after exercise, and there are a number of reason why they do.

The article does not state that exercise is unimportant.  There are other health benefits to exercise, such as enhanced cognitive ability and cardiovascular health.

Just don’t expect to get skinny without eating less, too.

Signed up for Man vs. Debt’s weight loss challenge

I’m on Team Delta for the Man Vs. Debt weight loss challenge.  I’m joining 29 other personal finance bloggers in a competition to reach weight goals.  The challenge will run from June 1st through July 31st.

I’ve set as a goal to lose 10 pounds during that time.  So it’s more Wii Balance Board, more elliptic trainer, and less candy for me!  (I’m actually up a bit since I stated my interest in losing weight.  Guess I wasn’t that interested!)

Anyway, let’s try again!

Eleven times

That’s the number of days over the past three months I’ve exercised 30 minutes or more, according to my records at Joe’s Goals.

Ouch.

Like most every great plan at the beginning of the year, this one fizzled.

It takes a lot of discipline to be the one out of twenty that will lose a substantial amount of weight and keep it off for life.  (That’s one doctor’s estimate on another site I frequent.)  The other nineteen die young and are miserable for a good part of their shortened lives.  I fear it might take diabetes to get me to change, but I hope not.

Oh well, have a great week everyone! 🙂

Find somebody to bug you about exercising

One of the guys that works in the same building I do at work bugs me every chance he gets about whether I’m going to the YMCA to exercise or not.

This is a very good thing.  I’ve asked him to keep needling me.

He’s a little older than I am, and he’s trying to get back into shape before it’s too late.  He’s trying a lot harder than I am, and doing what he can.  He’s admitted that it takes longer to recover between workouts than it used to, but he still does what he can.

I have done a little better at exercising than I was at the end of last year.  I’ve exercised for at least 30 minutes at least twice a week this month.  Keeping track of this is one of only two goals I have this year.

Hopefully my colleague will bug me about getting there three times a week. 😉

Elliptic trainers are fun

I’m working out on them a couple times a week.  Four or five times a week would be better.

I prefer the ones that give an arm workout as well as the other parts.  Holding onto the railings on the other machines seems a little like cheating, but I’m not one to talk right now.

The machine says that I burn around 450 calories during my 35-minute workout.  (I weigh myself before I work out and enter that into the machine.  I probably actually burn no less than 350 calories; they’re not too far off.) 

Through all this, I realized that people who lose two pounds a week are doing some serious dieting and some serious exercising.  It takes a deficit of 3,500 calories to lose a pound.  Cutting back 500 calories a day should mean a net loss of one pound per week.  Burning another 500 calories each and every day would be another pound per week.

At the rate I’m working out, I’d lose one pound a month.  That’s probably not fast enough.  It’s better than gaining a pound a month, but I’ll be fat for a looooong time at that rate.

Elliptic trainers are fun.  I’ll use them more often. 😉