Archive

Archive for December, 2010

So today is my birthday!

December 29th, 2010 Comments off

and I’m gonna have a good time,on this the 43rd celebration of my parents greatest accomplishment.  (I kid, 4th greatest… Winking smile )

image

Great way to wake up to some of the most stunningly beautiful people (of which my smokin’ hot wife is numero uno!) on facebook stopping by to write on my wall.  As well as a loyal twitter following of the best tweeps on earth!

I’ve had a great 42nd year, and so I should write some of the things I’ve accomplished, as well as some of the things I’ve avoided.  Here is it in bullet form!

  • Did not weigh 400 pounds
  • Did weigh under 300 pounds and should continue to weigh less as my 43rd year elapses
  • Watched all of LOST, again.
  • Did not watch all of Desperate Housewives.
  • walked a mile numerous times.
  • walked a 5k
  • ran a 5k and made it in 42 minutes.
  • Celebrated 17 years of marriage to the love of my life in a swanky hotel in Frisco.
  • Got a massage treatment with my wife.
  • Watched a Los Angeles Dodger game at Dodger Stadium
  • Didn’t watch the Dodgers win a game in Dodger Stadium *shakes fist at the Phillies*
  • Celebrated my children’s 11th, 14th, 8th and 16th birthdays
  • Disagreed with millions of other parents over who’s children are the bestest! (mine are, duh!)
  • Continued as editor-in-chief of LOSTblog.com
  • Obsessed over my quest to lose weight on various web-sites and excel spreadsheets.
  • Obsessed over my iPhone and have a bit of an app addiction (step one, admitted I have a problem)
  • Celebrated one year in recovery for my hurts, habits and hangups at Chase Oaks Celebrate Recovery.
  • Continued to be blessed by leading and teaching Sunday School each Sunday at Prairie Creek Baptist Church
  • Blessed to have many awesome online and offline friends, and doubly blessed to have some in both camps.
  • Didn’t get downsized.
  • Didn’t get supersized.
  • Celebrated 10 years of continuous employment with my current employer, eclipsing the previous record held by the U.S. Navy.
  • Didn’t vote in the mid-term election (because I was out of town, and forgot to early vote… off to the gulag for me!)
  • Pleased with the result of said election.

Thanks for hanging with me, during the pressure packed year of being The Answer.  I promise to be wrong more often in my 43rd year, and plan on remaining a loser of the rest of the year.

Cheers!

Jon

Categories: /dev/null Tags:

Water Stability

December 21st, 2010 Comments off

image

So time for another blog post, and like normal it’s about my journey and stuff I’m figuring out by looking at the data I’m collecting and seeing if I can notice any trends.  The first chart is my weight tracking for the month of December, nice and steady loss that is right on track to lose 4 pounds in the month of December.  The red line is the trend line that keeps me sane, weights below that line is a good, on track, signal.  The steady drop in the blue line is projected weights, that I’ve added to help project my plan.

The interesting peak in the weigh loss measurements is the December 6th upward spike.  Remember back in November I had another spike and determined that I was dehydrated and drank lots of water to try and normalize it.  I figured the Dec 6th spike was similar and sought out a way to try and normalize my hydration.  I found an iPhone app called Water that will calculate how many ounces of water based on my weight an other environmental options and then keeps track of how many ounces I drink as I log each glass of water.

That seems wacky, obsessive compulsive, I know, but it was and is something I need to track.  Since then, I’ve drank at least 150 ounces of water a day, sometimes a bit more, but I’ve hit the goal each day. So what is the result?  Well one is the spikes have gotten less severe in my daily weight fluctuations, and other one is evident in this next chart.

image

What this chart shows is data from my daily weigh-ins.  My fancy-dancy scale uses a low-voltage charge in my bare heels to measure resistance, and coupled with the body weight measurement it calculates body fat percentage, water percentage, and bone mass.  What I find interesting in this chart is how the body fat and water percentages have normalize without being so spikey as to appear random.  My theory is that a steady hydration rate has normalized my “chemistry” to maintain near the same resistance to the scale over time. 

Some subjective comments on my journey to stay hydrated is that the first week or so I always felt thirsty, even as I drastically increased my fluid intake my thirst was always high.  Second my nasal cavities dried out something fierce, I still us a Bi-Pap to help my sleep apnea (something that I hope will go away as I continue to lose weight…) so I increased the vaporization to help moisturize my nasal passages, but during the day they would feel dry also, even while drinking more.

What I drank is worth recording, I drank mostly water, with usually a cup or two of coffee during work days.  My coffee intake actually went down, as I was concentrating on drinking water.  I don’t drink much soda, or even tea.

So that’s my post for this week.  I’d write more, but I’m going to go swimming in the water, and ride the water slides that I can now legally ride, because I’m now under 300 pounds.

Categories: Life Tags: , ,

I’m gonna celebrate, dammit!

December 9th, 2010 1 comment

Because 42 pounds lost was my goal, and I did it!image

That said, 42 was my initial goal, I’m not done yet!  And with all I’ve learned about that blasted trend line I’ve gotta keep up the momentum to have that trend weight get under the 300 mark (still will happen this month, so long as I keep drinking water!)

So while I wait for the trend to catch up to the scale, I’m considering my next steps, I have a wacky idea in mind, that should be a fun way to mix it up a bit in the next few months.  So stay tuned.

Meanwhile, a small soliloquy on why 42 pounds was my goal (despite the 43 stated in the above picture, I didn’t want to use a three-digit number starting with a 3 as a goal.).

I turned 42 last December.  I read Douglas Adams’ Hitchiker’s Guide to the Galaxy when I was in college, so I understand the significance of the number 42 being the ulitmate answer to life, the universe and everything. [Aside: the question being what is 6*9 merely a distraction, this universe’s question shall remain a mystery, see here).

In January my favorite television show LOST started it’s final season (something that should be blatantly obvious to my two readers, but I write to a larger audience!), which I progressed through in a state of joy and sadness.  At The End, I realized I needed something other than television (though I still love me some TV!) to be important in my life.  About the same time as LOST’s finale, my lovely and HAWT wife started on Weight Watchers, she asked me gently to do it with her, because trying to plan meals alone on the system was hard.  So I started Weight Watchers, and then after my free period expired, I started using LoseIt! Both of these programs give you a goal weight, which is a stumper.  All I really new back then was I didn’t want to be as heavy as I was, but as far as a discrete number… clueless.  So I fell back on the LOST numbers: 4, 8, 15, 16, 23, 42.  I chose the biggest, because with my initial weigh-in that would put me under 300 pounds.  No I’m looking at all the progress and trying to find a next big number… but I get ahead of myself, stay tuned!

Sometime after I started on controlling my calorie intake. [Aside: that sentence is a laborious way of avoiding the word “diet” – for which I want to avoid because so far I haven’t eliminated any food sources, just how much of the calories I ingest.] I also wanted to increase my calorie outtake.  So I started the Couch to 5K program, which gently guides a couch potato like I was into a somewhat steady runner.  I pegged a date to run a 5k in September, and was committed to getting that done.  I ran my first 5k in 42 (and a bit more) minutes.

See there is that number again.  42. I love the number 42!  The next jean waist size in my cross-hairs? You guessed it 42! (from a 48 mind you…)

So with hitting the 42 pounds gone, I’m gonna celebrate!

Now, where did I put my celery?

Categories: Life, Losing It Tags: , , , ,

LoseIt! has gone social!

December 8th, 2010 Comments off

image LoseIt! started out as a Food Journal iPhone application.  The benefit of the application for iPhone OS is that it’s always with you, you can enter you meals as you eat them, or look up choices for many convenient restaurants while you’re waiting in line.  The application has been upgraded a few times and is what I use for my food journal and exercise log.

A few months back LoseIt upgraded their website so that users can enter their food and exercise entries through the website, and it has been a wonderful add-on to the iDevice based method of keeping track of things.  Good charting and reports on the web site (see my past posts for screen caps of the reports) helps geeks like me to number crunch and over-analyze as much as they want.

Yesterday, LoseIt! added a Social Networking layer to their website, which is going to be awesome!.  In the past LoseIt! could automatically post your progress to Twitter and Facebook, but there wasn’t really a good way to connect to other LoseIt-ers unless you knew their email address.  With this new social networking layer, it’s much easier to connect to people that are somewhere in their own journey.

image Once you’ve added friend’s you can change your privacy settings to decide how much you want to share with others, either LoseIt! friends, LoseIt! members or anybody that browses the site.  It has a wall-like Activity list where you can see how your friends are progressing, and even write on your own Activity list to record your thoughts for a day.  Commenting on activities is also enabled so you can motivate and encourage your friends.

The accounts are linked to the LoseIt! forums as well, so there is a way to discuss tips, techniques, recipes, exercise programs.  The forums also make or a good way to discover more friends that are interested in similar things.

image

Also to add to the encouragement factor you can earn badges, which are also shown on your profile.  Badges are earned or regularly logging your information, making friends, exercising and notable weight-loss milestones.  What a fun way to document your challenges, and successes.

If you are interested in losing a few pounds, or a lot of pounds (as is my case).  I’d encourage you to check it out, and join up (even if you don’t have an iDevice).  For me and my journey, the discipline of daily logging has been crucial to my successes.  It’s easy to get LOST in the day to day minutiae of logging calories and weight, and lose focus of the longer view.  I’ve continually averaged about a pound lost a week for over 8 months, and that’s something to celebrate.  These new features at the LoseIt! site have helped me to re-recognize my achievements, and realize that I’m making a difference in my life, and the years yet to come.

Categories: Life, Losing It Tags:

I’m just full of good news…

December 2nd, 2010 Comments off

Alternate title: Numb3rs

Alternative alternate title: This is why keeping all these stoopid logs is worth it.

First C25K Intervals = April 13, 2010

Last C25K Intervals = Nov 30, 2010
image image

Progress!

Categories: Life, Losing It Tags: , ,

A fountain of water… springing… down?

December 2nd, 2010 2 comments

Alternate title: I didn’t realize I was thirsty…

Alternative Alternate title: Even when filled with living water, I still need to drink dihydrogen monoxide.

Although I’ve snarked before on the dangers of DHMO, the truth is two hydrogen atoms combined with one oxygen atom is the most important element to those that are living (plant AND animal).  [Sidebar: arsenic? really?After my frustrations of the last week of Novemeber, I immediately enacted my plan of not over eating and drinking MOAR WATER!  The downside to this strategy, without being too detailed to my gentile readers, is that I am now taking lots of breaks during the day.

But that’s the only downside, everything else is upside. Well upside in the downwards direction. Gravity is confusing, when you’re losing weight.  But I digress.  A couple of pictures. help to tell the story of where I’m going with this:

image

That double upwards spike had me seriously stressing. Through all that time I was taking a good food log, and getting in exercise, the day before the first spike I had a 4 mile run (then ate pizza. *facepalm*)  In this time I’ve also added weight routines on off run days, which might be the culprit for some of the weight gain. The old adage muscle weighs more than fat, while technically incorrect, muscle is denser than fat and adding more muscle mass is better for my metabolism, but it’s impossible to put on 6 pounds of muscle (or fat) in a week.  The problem was/is water retention.  The cure, oddly, Drink MOAR water.

SpongeBob Narrator voice: THREE DAYS LATER:

image

Woo, thank you Sir Newton for inventing that gravity thing. Although gravity has nothing to do with the above chart, the increase in water intake (and, oddly, urine outtake) has reversed that scary trend in just four days.  People, if you’re breathing, drink water!  Especially when the heater starts working, and dries everything out… (Note: for further research weight loss bubbles as a result of colder temperatures?)

The other part of my last post, was the long dissertation on trend lines, and confusing math.  Let my break it down, The daily weigh-in numbers can act as either anchors or buoy to the trend line.  A weigh-in number below the current trend will drag it down, how much depends on how ‘heavy’ the weight (the more below the line, the “heavier” it is) and will pull the imagetrend line down. Similarly, a weigh-in number above the line acts as a buoy and lifts the trend up.  So in this chart, blue dots are the daily weigh-in numbers, and the red dots are the daily trend numbers.  Remember all that stressing about the fluctuating numbers on the scale each morning?  Well the trend numbers help with that. (I started using the trend after the scary spike!) If my numbers fluctuate a little up but stay below the trend, that’s good still on track.  If they spike above the trend line, then I’ll need to re-evaluate and make sure all the checklist (exercise, food log, water intake) items are in order.  A bit of freedom.

So, don’t freak out, I’m not stopping this journey train because of some wacky number.  I’m feeling too good about myself, and enjoying myself too much to get too grumpy. I’m just geeking out on the numbers, because that’s what I do. Also, I recognize looking at last post’s money chart, that I was due for a little plateau.  All signals are in the green, Houston.  Let’s light this candle.

Categories: Life, Losing It Tags: , , , , ,