Vlog 2: A Breakthrough

I would have come up with a witty title, but something so big happened today, I can’t. It just is what it is, and it’s huge.

Basically, I had a significant breakthrough in my “dieting” viewpoint.

If you are in a place where you can’t watch the vlog, this is it in a nutshell. (And would you watch it for me later? Please?)

Basically, I shot my calorie budget for the day early. By noon. Ordinarily, on days when I eat too much, I just view the day as lost, don’t exercise, and I plan to start over tomorrow.

Except today… I didn’t.

Even though my calories were shot, I still exercised. I exercised hard.

I don’t even know if I can express my excitement at this breakthrough. Some of you are probably saying, “Yeah, so what?” Well, for me… this is huge. Gargantuan. Life changing, even.

I’m very proud of myself right now.

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Good Rule #2 – Think Through the Workout

I have a match-up of videos to share about, but I’ll do that tomorrow. Instead, I had a burst of knowledge appear in my head today, and I have to share it. It helped me out immensely today; I hope it will help me out in the future, and if it helped me out, it might help someone else out, too.

The new rule I’ve found?

Think through the workout.

I came home from work exhausted. Not mentally but physically.

Mentally I was fine, but I was tired.

I came very close to just counting my calories for the day, sitting at my desk and working on my homework, and going to bed. No exercise.

But then I stopped and thought, “Imagine how good you will feel on Monday if you step on the scale and it shows another two pound loss.”

“Imagine how good you would feel if you just decided to put on your sneakers, strap on your heart rate monitor, and worked out for an hour.”

I thought through my workout.

By which I mean… I ignored the workout itself, and I focused on the good that would come from it.

The first five minutes were a little tough, but before I knew it, fifty minutes had passed, I completed one of my bracket’s videos, and my exercise for the day was finished.

Next time I am struggling to get the motivation to workout, I’m going to focus on the small immediate good that will come from my workout.

Picturing myself thin at 180 doesn’t always work. That’s too far away, and I’ve never been there, so I can’t visualize it.

But picturing myself standing on the scale Monday morning and seeing a 2 pound loss… that’s easy. I’ve done that before.

And with today’s workout done, I’m one step closer to doing it again.

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A Nerd Fitness Six Week Challenge Weigh-In

My weigh-ins jump all over the place. I’m just not very consistent that way, but I am consistent in that I weigh in roughly once per week. For the next six weeks, at least, I am weighing in on Mondays because I am going to take part in the Nerd Fitness Six Week Challenge. Since today is the first day and it ends on April 16th, I’m switching to Mondays.

If you don’t know what Nerd Fitness is, well… it’s basically a fitness/health/level up your life blog for nerds. I know of no other way to describe it. Plus, Steve (the owner/author/dude in charge) has six-pack abs, and I think I have a man crush. (Is that weird? Sorry. But not really.)

To participate, go here for more info.

First up, my complete measurements, along with two Myspace-esque hold-the-camera-at-the-mirror photos. (I hate doing those, a lot, but I want a photo visual to compare before and after, and Tina left for work. [I have no work because it’s spring break!])

They aren’t flattering, but they are me, right now. Unshaved, unshowered, and a little funky from just cleaning out the garage.

And these are my stats, along with body measurements, some of which were very, very, shockingly eye-opening. It’s funny; you see that body every day in the mirror, but until you actually wrap a tape measure around your stomach… it just doesn’t have the same impact. I am definitely looking forward to that number going down.

Weight: 370.3
Change from Last Thursday: -1.3 pounds
Change from Highest: -32.0 pounds
Waist: 54”
Stomach: 65 ¼”
Chest: 54 ½”
R. Thigh: 33”
R. Calf: 19 ½”
R. Bicep: 18 ½”

The calf may reduce some, but not much. My calves are pretty solid. The rest of the numbers will drop. I have big arms, but there is definitely some flab on there I need to lose, too.

Part of the Six Week Challenge is picking two to three diet goals, fitness goals, and Level Up Your Life goals. Here are mine.


Eat at least seven fruit and veggie servings every day. (Seriously – I struggle hard with this.)

Track all foods that I eat. (For the most part, I do well here, but I want to keep this a goal so I remember to do so.)
Have a protein-based snack every day, instead of reaching for carbs. (I’m thinking a few hard-boiled egg whites every day at two p.m. might get me through the afternoon slump better than a candy bar.)


Run a 5K, regardless of time. (I’ve struggled with running for a long time. I want to yet I don’t, because it is hard on my body. Well, I recently discovered something that, for me, seems to be working. I jog in place to train, and I limit my outdoor runs to once per week. So far, I’m doing great on this plan. No feet or joint pain, and my cardio endurance, even jogging in place, is significantly growing. Let’s see. And if for some reason I end up being unable to run, I’ll count this a victory even if I just walk the 5K.)

Stretch after every workout.

Decrease waist size by 3”. (I know we shouldn’t use numbers for time-based goals, but I feel this is very attainable.)

Level Up Life

Pay off last remaining credit card debt. (Very doable. Should happen in next two months. I want to see it happen in the next six weeks.)

Write 15,000 words on my young adult novel. (At the end of the day, I am often very tired and after I get my exercise in, the idea of sitting at the computer and writing doesn’t always appeal to me. However, if I want to finish my book (and I do), I need to do this!)

So, those are my goals. If you want to participate, you have until March 7th to sign up.

Here’s hoping it works! Today is a brand new day. I’m making it mine.

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Benchmark set…


First time I’ve ever used a “good” heart rate monitor.  I worked out pretty hard today.  Just a quick workout before date night.  I really thought I would have burned more calories, but that’s okay.

I’ll burn more tomorrow.

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Workout Video Review: Sweatin’ to the Oldies

I’ve shared on this blog several times that I have committed to losing this weight gym-free. This does not mean that I am not working out, however. Tina and I both do weight lifting (I will admit – it does help that I have free weights at home), but cardio is a bit tougher.

Sometimes, I just do walk aerobics in the living room while I watch television.

However, a few days ago, I remembered that I had a huge collection of workout videos somewhere in storage. Given how sadly disorganized I am, that could mean my huge stash of workout videos (seriously, probably 50 or more) is in one of three places:
a) The closet in my office that I crammed full when I moved in three years ago and pretty much haven’t touched since
b) In a tote somewhere in my garage that my car will not even fit in
c) In one of fifteen places at my parent’s house, because I never took them when I moved out

Well, after a quick search in the garage, it turns out that the answer is probably all three. However, I did find a tote with several videos in it (and a VCR, thank goodness), and I’ve decided that for the next little bit, I’m going to select one video a week for my cardio.

I’ll share in a blog post about my weight loss journey(s), but I have to say, one man has shown up in my weight loss efforts more than anyone else. This man is mocked, but I honestly believe he has people’s best interests at heart.

That man is Richard Simmons.

And for that reason, I am choosing to do Sweatin’ to the Oldies for my first week doing VHS cardio workouts!

Sweatin’ to the Oldies came out in 1988, and it was pretty revolutionary for its time. It actually had real music, played by an actual on-screen band. The music video was even set at a high school prom (so chosen because Richard Simmons never went to his own prom because he was embarrassed by his then-obesity.)

Even more than that, the people working out in this video covered the spectrum. There were thin people who had never had a weight problem, but even more significantly than that, there were obese people participating.

If you’ve never done a Sweatin’ video, you should probably know that Richard Simmons is always Richard Simmons. Some people are highly irritated by him. If you are one of those people, you will not enjoy this workout.

His first Sweatin’ video (there are five total) is also his shortest. It clocks in at about thirty-nine minutes. It consists of a cardio warm up, upper body and lower body stretching, five aerobic songs, cardio cool down, and a cool down stretch.

My rating: 8/10

I will definitely enjoy doing this video for the next week.

Oh, and my favorite part of Richard’s videos? At the end, all of the dancers get to dance into the camera and show off how much weight they’ve lost.

In other news, don’t forget about the Eat Smart Scales giveaway! It ends on Thursday night!

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12-31-13 - 412.0
1-3-14 - 407.0 (-5.0 pounds total)