Thursday, May 26, 2011


I feel so bad. I broke Jason's Fitbit!

Saturday, I did a bunch of laundry and I grabbed his pajama pants off the bed because he has a tendency to let them get - how shall I say this delicately? - stinky before washing them. Or before I demand he let me wash them. They're his favorite fleece pants that his aunt made into fleece cargo pants with pockets all over them. The man loves his cargo pants.

Later in the day we were driving somewhere and he mentioned he forgot to put his Fitbit on that morning.

I didn't put the two together until later that night when he asked, "Where are my fleece pants?" and then informed me that his Fitbit was in one of the pockets. I always, always check the pockets of his pants and shorts before I wash them, but it never occurred to me to check his pajama pockets.

I RAN down to the basement and pulled out all the clothes before finding his sad, damp Fitbit at the very bottom of the washing machine.

But wait! It worked!

Only then it stopped working.

I read on the Fitbit community pages how other people have saved theirs after laundering by letting them sit in something that absorbs water (like rice) so it's been sitting in a tupperware of special crystal absorbant kitty litter (CLEAN kitty litter) for the past few days. Last night, Jason tried it and it was still dead.

He is obviously so disappointed, but trying to be nice to me about it. I keep telling him not to worry because I'm going to buy him a new one. He says that's not necessary, but whatever. What's the point of having the Number 1 active score if you can't beat your husband's active score, in addition to the score of other friends and acquaintances? I have to have someone to lord it over at home.

(Our friend Deborah has now bumped me off the active score top spot again, but I'll be back!)

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Challenge. Over!

Yesterday was Day 30 of my 30-Day Fitness Challenge and I only missed one day! That's right, at least 30 minutes of activity a day for 30 days. Well, 29 out of 30 days. I'm feeling okay about missing that one day since I was super sore and figured I needed to give my muscles a break.

I'm proud of myself for sticking to it. I'm flattered and excited by how many people have told me I've motivated them.

Yet, there's the disappointment of knowing I haven't lost any weight... In fact, I gained 1.2 pounds in the past 30 days. BUT, I might have lost a few inches. Finally! Actual movement! In a downward direction!

I lost about half an inch off my waist (for reals, not just me pulling the tape tight) and maybe a quarter inch off my hips (my birthing hips are always latecomers to this fat loss thing). Not major, but improvement. My thighs and calves are also definitely smaller.

Oh my gosh, though, if the loss if going to be this slow...The thought is exhausting. I'm hoping that this is actually just the beginning of a positive trend that will get faster the longer I do it.

On the positive side, in this past month, I've gotten stronger, I'm swimming faster and my resting heart rate has probably decreased by a couple of beats per minute.

We're going on a trip in a few days and when I get back I want to start another challenge, but I'm not sure what that challenge will be yet. Someone suggested P90X, but I think the plyometric cardio may be a bit rough on my heel. Maybe I'll focus more tightly on my diet this time. Any ideas?

Anyway, I'm just going to enjoy our trip and not think about this for a week and a half.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


I've never actually engaged in disordered eating behavior, but that doesn't mean that my mind has never flirted with the idea. I've been known to think about ways I could severely restrict food and speed up my weight loss, even though in the smart part of my brain I know that's not how it really works. I would make a plan like, OK, tomorrow, I'm just going to eat this little bit and that's IT. Or, tomorrow, I'm not going to eat all day, and then just have a little dinner.

Then I would forget all about it and never do it. Which is obviously for the best.

Yesterday afternoon, I found myself thinking this way again. With as much knowledge as I have gleaned about how metabolism works and knowing that I don't want to completely shut mine down, I think, well maybe if I just really didn't eat hardly anything, eventually I would HAVE to lose weight.

I know it's messed up and while I wish I could just be this pillar of strength and right thinking all the time, this stall in my weight loss has really, REALLY got me down. I don't want to be skinny, I just want to be normal. And not even normal on the BMI, but normal for me (which is still well into "overweight" for BMI, but I don't believe in BMI). I want to feel comfortable in my own skin and not feel like a sausage in my jeans (that were kind of loose at one point!). I want to look at pictures of myself again and not cringe.

I've talked with 2 medical professionals about this in the past couple of weeks, not as my main reason for seeing them, but as a side note. I got my thyroid checked and that's not the problem. Both of them asked if I want to see a nutritionist.

First, I know the nutritionist will spout the standard low-fat, whole grains things, which I don't believe in anyway. The only time I've managed to lose weight over the past couple of years is when I've limited carbs. Plus, I just feel better without all the carbs. On Friday I went to a work lunch and the ONLY thing they had was sandwiches. Not even a side salad. I ate some of a roll, but pulled the meat out of the rest of it. Just that part of a roll had me completely falling asleep at my desk a little while later. I haven't experienced the mid-afternoon crash like that in ages.

Second, I just have to laugh because nutrition has kind of become my hobby and I've read all different viewpoints ad nauseum. Maybe they don't believe me because to them I am just this overweight (nay, obese, says the almighty BMI) girl and so I OBVIOUSLY don't know what I'm doing at all.

Third, I record my food and my exercise pretty religiously because I like numbers. I've been doing this fairly consistently for a few years now. I know how many calories I eat. I know how many calories I expend. So do Sparkpeople and Fitbit. That's not the problem.

When I told Jason that my thyroid was normal he said "Well, that's good." Yeah, it's good I don't have a medical problem. But it just means that right now I don't have an answer either.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Test Results

Thyroid is normal. So that's not the problem. And at least now when people suggest it, I can say, "I just had it tested. That's not the problem."

Even amid my frustration, I'm continually flattered by the number of people who have asked about my 30-Day Challenge updates that I post on Facebook, and those who have told me that I have inspired them.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Good News and Bad News

Bad News: Last night after shredding, I felt a new, stabbing pain in my heel. Neat. I think I need to lay off the cardio portion of the 30-Day Shred, which generally involves lots of bouncing on your feet. Maybe I can just do the weight and abs sections of all 3 workout levels at once and count that as my strength training. Today I'm totally limping around which, you know, is awesome.

Good News: Generally when I ease up on my heel during the day, wear my splint at night, and ice my heel in the evenings, it actually seems to improve. I guess I just need to let it improve, and not be so impatient. Since I sit for most of the day, I brought my splint to work and am wearing it while I'm seated. Maybe if I keep my foot in the right position for longer, those fascia will get a chance to heal.

Bad News: Today is Day 25 of my challenge and I decided to measure myself. Not officially - that will come after the challenge - but just to see if maybe there was some improvement there since the scale obviously isn't going down. The verdict: nope. Well, I might have lost a quarter inch in my waist, but I also might have just been pulling the tape tight. My calves are a tad smaller, and that's one measurement I can't fake because they are solid rocks and there's no pulling the tape tight on those. (They are also the reason I can't wear knee-high boots.) But the hips, the arms, the thighs, are all exactly what they were 25 days ago when I started this challenge. Frustrating!

Good News: I rocked my swim this morning. On Tuesday, a lady in my Masters group asked if I wanted to meet up to swim our emailed workout together. We got together this morning and discovered that she has been doing the D-level workouts, while I've been doing the C-level workout. She decided to challenge herself and do the C workout with me, and she couldn't stop gushing (to me and to one of her buddies in the locker room) about what a great workout it was and how I pushed her because I'm such a good swimmer. The thing is, she pushed me too in a way. For instance, we swam a 400 right in the middle of the set, and once I set the pace and realized she was right there with me, I felt pressured (in a good way) to keep up the pace.

So when the scale and the measuring tape aren't improving, at least I know someone thinks I'm an awesome swimmer. That was a nice ego boost.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


I just went to the doctor about something unrelated to my weight. They weighed me of course, and I'm 6 pounds heavier than the last time I was there.

So while I was there, I had blood drawn to get my thyroid checked. The thing is, I don't really think I have any of the other symptoms for hypothyroid. But if there isn't a problem, that's one thing I can check off the list.

I'm just feeling so defeated by my body at this point. I feel stronger, and I know I'm in good shape. I just have 40 extra pounds hanging on. Yeah, it's up to 40 now.

On the other hand, my bp is 116/68 and my resting heart rate is 54 bpm.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Day 21: Rest Day

Today I cried uncle. I worked too hard over the last couple of days and my body was just begging for rest today.

Friday after work I did Jillian Michaels's 30-Day Shred (or "shredded". I like that use of the verb). I forgot how much that DVD makes me a sweaty beast! Not only that, but it works some muscles like nothing else does.

Saturday morning I got up and swam for an hour. I modified my Masters workout a bit so that I did fewer drills and more timed intervals, including several 25 sprints, which I did in a satisfying 18 seconds. I felt great afterward.

Then Saturday afternoon we went to help a friend move from one 2-story apartment to another 2-story apartment. I begged off lifting some of the super-heavy stuff, but I definitely worked hard. Then I came home and cooked two huge pans of a Mexican casserole and no-bake cookies for a church fundraiser this morning. We hosted a lunch to raise money to pay for the teenage girls I work with to go to girls' camp at the end of July.

I woke up this morning aching EVERYwhere. My legs especially, but my back and arms hurt too. But we had a fundraiser to do! So I popped some ibuprofen and left for church, loaded down with food, and tulips for centerpieces.

Of course, nothing can go normally at our church. The hot water heater sprung a leak. So the bishop cut church short by an hour and we hurriedly heated up all the food and set up all the tables and were ready to go by noon. It was a success!

I got home a bit after 2, with the thought of going for a 30-minute walk, since my soreness had faded a bit thanks to ibuprofen and adrenalin. Only it was raining.

So I waited. But once I sat down for a half hour, I realized, hey, I'm sore.

I'm really sore.

I think I need to give my body a break.

So I have, and even though I'm feeling kind of bad about not perfectly finishing my 30-Day Challenge, I think it was the right choice.

Tomorrow, it's back to work, both real work and exercise.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Carb Creep

Sometimes I feel really frustrated. I hate that I can't seem to lose weight anymore. I'm frustrated by the pain in my heel (and the horror stories I hear from friends who suffer from plantar fasciitis. Wearing shoes in the shower! No more flip flops ever!)

Today is Day 19 of the Fitness Challenge and I haven't missed a day yet, despite having to replan my workouts when I overslept 2 days this week, including this morning.

Actually, that's not quite true. This morning I was just exhausted and made the executive decision to not go swimming. Instead I'm going to do Jillian Michaels's 30-Day Shred when I get home. I sort of forgot I owned that DVD until my friend Donna reminded me about it yesterday. I'll see how Jillian's jumping up and down cardio movements affect my heel. If it hurts too much, I'll just do the rest of the workout without the cardio, and maybe do it twice.

It's beautiful outside and I wish I could walk home, but I know that's just asking for trouble (and pain), so I won't.

I think part of my problem though is that even though I plan to eat low-carb, and I do eat lower carb than most people, I've allowed the simple carbs to creep back in. Brownie bites? Yes, please. Sugar cookies that I baked last night for a church activity tomorrow? Don't mind if I do. I'm logging them, I'm not ignoring them, but I'm still eating them.

So tomorrow I rededicate myself to getting the simple carbs out of my diet. I don't even know why I eat them. OK, I do love a good fudgey brownie, but I haven't had a really GOOD fudgey brownie in awhile. And I don't even really like sugar cookies. Seriously, if I'm going to have carbs, I'd rather it be in veggie form, like roasted broccoli or brussels sprouts (yes, I acknowledge I'm a weirdo).

Tomorrow, I swim and get back to eating the way that feels best!

Friday, May 06, 2011

New Tricks

Today is Day 12 of my 30-Day Fitness Challenge and I haven't missed a day yet! I'm determined to see this challenge through all 30 days, no matter what busy-ness or messed up schedules come my way.

For instance, I was supposed to wake up and go for a swim this morning. I printed out my workout and had everything ready to go, only I turned off my alarm in my sleep and woke up a half hour too late. I'm planning a lunch walk now (and it's gorgeous outside!), but am a little concerned that the wind will be flipping up my skirt. It is always so windy in Providence and I like flippy skirts. Bad combination.

I mentioned before how our Masters coach told me my elbows weren't high enough (well, me and my entire lane of 5 people). So I've been making a concerted effort to get my elbows high and to modify my stroke. I even went and watched some YouTube videos of some of my favorite Olympic swimmers and sure enough, they have the pointy elbows in freestyle.

So far I've noticed that I'm going the same speed (or faster), but not getting quite so tired. Part of that could be because I'm swimming more and getting into better shape, but I think part of it is not working so hard during my stroke recovery. It still feels kind of awkward, but is getting a little more natural. So exciting to learn something new after 28 years of swimming!

I'm also turning into a complete swimming nerd (Even more than I was before. I've only met one other person who likes watching Olympic swimming as much as I do and she's a swimmer too). A lady in my SparkPeople swimmers group linked to an article at, and now I'm trying not to waste too much time clicking through all of the interesting swimming articles.

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

I Know I've Said This Before

I'm a little OCD about food and fitness numbers. During the week I record all my food. During the weekend I record most/some of my food because I'm not tied to a computer like I am during the week. However, I am always aware of what's going in my mouth even if I'm not sitting in front of the computer typing in what I ate.

I also meticulously record all my workouts because it's fun. I'm determined to beat my last SparkPeople streak of 12 days in a row of 30 minutes of exercise.

And like I've said before, I have determined that if calories in/calories out was really all there is to it, I would have lost these cruddy 30-40 pounds AGES ago.

According to the Fitbit charts (ooo, charts!), over the last 30 days alone, if you're talking about calorie deficits, I should have lost 8 pounds. There is something else at work here.

By the way, I have officially decided that if after this 30-Day Fitness Challenge and eating low-carb within my supposed calorie range I still haven't lost any weight (or significant inches), I'm getting my thyroid checked. Because, frankly, if in 21 days I'm still exactly where I was after busting my butt and being fairly meticulous with my eating (with a brownie bite here and there on a weekend), I am going to be really ticked.