Here's the skinny: I've been near 300 lbs. for years and need to lose weight. I'm married to a wonderful lady, and we have a family. One of our boys often asks if I'll run with him. I've always had to tell him, "No." In August of '09, my wife learned about a couch-to-5k running program, and I agreed to try it with her. This blog chronicles our progress on that training program. I hope I'll soon be able to surprise my son by telling him, "Yes, I'll go running with you!"

Friday, February 17, 2012

Twelve pushups

Things have been a bit busy and crazy here at work, so I've not been able to jump back into things as quickly as I've hoped.  The good news, however, is that I've adjusted to caloric restrictions again. For the past three days, I've managed to limit my daily calories, keeping my daily net intake at or below 1,579 calories.

     "Our estimate is that you may consume about 1,579 calories a day to lose 2.7 pounds per week."
     (From's My Daily Plate tool)

I think I'm off to a good start on that end.

Well, the last time I started the One Hundred Pushups Challenge, I completed only six pushups during my pre-test.  The number you can do during that test determines where you start in the program.  What surprised me last night was that I actually did twelve (12)! That means some of the strength gains I made during that aborted attempt are still at play.  I was really surprised!

Fridays are my longest days at work now, so I won't likely be weighing in on Fridays any longer.  Since the Biggest Workplace Loser (BWL) contest here is holding weigh-ins on Tuesdays, I'm going to post those results as they come in.  Other than that, I'm going to try to avoid the scale (since weight fluctuates so much from day to day).

Anyway, I need to run (literally and figuratively)!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Help Mr. F out!!!

I set up a Crowd Tilt campaign to help motivate Mr. F.  Would you consider contributing?

Mr. F is starting the biggest loser at work and is back on the wagon. This is one way we can encourage his journey to his motorcycle. Check it out!

Mrs. F

Mrs. F -- Where have I been?

2011 started with about a 5 or 10 lb gain. That quickly became, 15, 20 and eventually 30. To say that it was a tough year is an understatment. When I list the things -- lost my first grandparent,my daughter was diagnosed with a genetic disorder, my husband lost his job and I dealt full force with depression. These aren't excuses. They are reasons, yes, but not excuses.

It's enough -- although when listed, it doesn't quite express really how hard it was. It's the between the lines, the day in and day out battles with my daughter, the feeling hopeless with an undetermined amount of no job before us, and just not feeling able to cope. It wasn't just one thing.

At the end of the year, I found myself longing for that fresh start. I wanted the new year to bring something different. My husband started a new job January 3. I was getting my depression under control and working thru the framework of my daughter's diagnosis. I felt like I could see the light beginning to emerge.

I'm starting out at 185 and curently working on week 4 of Couch to 5k. I'm back to tracking calories, exercising and trying to knock off that weight. There are a few motivating factors. The two main ones are a 20 yr class renuion in August and a trip to disney with one of my best friends in October. My friend and I are both struggling and we needed a goal to stive for. So if we lose 30 lbs by october, we are going to disney together!!! I am very excited about that.

I've done this before and I know I can do it again!

Mrs. F

I also came to a point where I realized that I wasn't going to apologize for doing what I needed to do to survive. I hope, in the future, to develop better strategies for managing stress and depression. It was all I could do to function, and I refuse to apologize for that.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Avoiding avoidance (a little cash helps)

Okay, by now most of you have probably figured that I've either moved on to other things, or, if you have a morbid streak, that I died.  I did move on to other things--being lazy, succumbing to self pity and self loathing, and just simply giving up.  I didn't die, but I moved myself in that direction.  My blood sugar readings recently were as bad as they were when I started this blog. I don't have the emotional or mental capacity right now to figure out why I keep doing this to myself.

Mrs. F has been going through a rough patch, too.  For her, the stress of my being without work during the final quarter of 2011 didn't help, but I can't use that as an excuse.  I fell off the wagon not long after I finished C25K, with one or two half-hearted attempts to start over in the interim.  I've been avoiding things. I've been trying to ignore my health. Well, as of today, I have a new motivation to try to avoid avoidance. Who am I kidding to think it will be different if I reboot now?

Well, for one, I'm working for a fantastic employer now.  I didn't realize how toxic my last workplace was until I was gone, and didn't have a full appreciation of the toxicity until I started where I am today, at the beginning of January.  My mood is better, and I've shed a bit of weight without specifically trying--I can tell because I'm wearing my red oxford shirt today, and it was too tight to wear during my first week on the job.

But, really, why now?  Mrs. F tried enticing me with a motorcycle sometime back.  I've always wanted one, but she's never liked them much.  She told me if I could drop to 200 lbs., I could get one.  That really excited me, but then I realized that we couldn't afford one, so I set that aside.

I do have a stong competitive streak.  I think I finished C25K just to prove that I could do it.  There were goals and a plan, and it was a challenge to myself to see if I could finish.  Well, today my work starts its own "Biggest Loser" inspired weight loss competition. I'll refer to it as "Biggest Workplace Loser" (BWL) from now on.  Why was that motivating? Cash.  Cash prizes for the top three losers (by percentage of weight loss), and a cash prize for the winning team (we've been assigned to teams of four).  Yes, it's true.  If the money is right, I'll do almost anything (anything that doesn't violate my moral constructs).

So, I'm stepping away now to weigh in, and then I will come back and note my game plan...

...Well, it's 285.6 lbs.  Not great, but not horrible (since I spent a lot of time over 300 lbs.).

Now, I just learned that this is a twelve week contest. I thought it was going to be only six weeks.  Expectations set.  Originally, I was planning on a 10% loss over 12 weeks, but I just found out that the winner last year lost nearly 16%! That means I'd need to lose more than 45 lbs. in 12 weeks.  Possible? Yes.  Easy? No!

I think I'll stay with my plan to try for 10%, and just hope that it is good enough.  I'm the biggest participant in the group of 20 people (out of a 60 person office).  Honestly, I can't see why any of them would need to lose a pound (!), but the point is to get active, and that's healthy no matter where one starts.

Okay, so here's my plan.
  • I'm going back to counting my calories.  I will use My Daily Plate to keep track.  I'll enter in a weight loss goal of 2.5 lbs. per week.
  • Each day, while at work, I'm going to get up every two hours and make a few laps through the building, going up and down stairwells at opposite ends of a long hallway.  I will start with four such loops each time, and adjust accordingly.
  • I'm enrolling in karate classes that run every Monday night.  I studied years ago and was once quite good at it.  That will get me moving.
  • C25K - I'm thinking about going through C25K again.  This would be in addition to my other things. I don't want to overdo it, but I really want to win!
  • 100 Pushup Challenge - I started this before, after C25K, but never finished it.  I owe it to myself to start again, and to see it through.
Attaining my goal of 28 lbs. or more lost in 12 weeks would be great, but I can't help but wonder if I can pull off more... That 16% figure is now stuck in my mind.  That would require me to lose over 45 lbs in 12 weeks, and that's a lot!

Back in it, hopefully for the long haul,

Andrew a.k.a. FatManRunning