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My Strange Campaign (Tips for Losing Weight)

Started June 13. Goal is Jan 1, 2009=200.  That’s about a pound to lose every 7 days. I expect to get to 210 without major effort, but under that will be tough going. Google, curse you for archiving this for eternity! For those random surfers, this refers to the weight naked on my bathroom scale at 7 AM in the morning (before eating).  See also the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute’s guide to controlling your weight). See this BMI calculator and how to measure the waist-to-hip ratio See also my musings about the real cause of weight gain.  Here’s CDC statistics on the percentage of obesity by state and here is a listing of median BMIs by age and gender. Webmd  (a health/nutrition site where MDs review all content)has good articles about exercising to keep lean and dieting the smart way. From an article about Flab Over  40 “your metabolism tends to decelerate by about 5% for every decade of life past age 40, so that if your resting metabolic rate is, say, 1,200 calories per day at age 40, it will be around 1,140 at age 50. At age 40 to maintain your weight, that is to not gain weight, you’re going to have to eat 100 calories less a day, and that has nothing to do with anything other than the natural course of aging.” From the same article:

Muscle is far more “metabolically active” than fat, meaning that lean, more muscular people have an easier time burning calories at rest than to people with higher proportions of body fat. “Let’s say I’ve worked out at the gym and I have a new pound on board, or, for that matter, I take an old muscle mass on me that’s untrained and now I train it and preserve that pound. That muscle mass may now burn between 35 to 50 calories extra a day, versus the same pound of fat, which would burn anywhere from 5-10 calories a day.

Here’s something fun: a description of height-weight ratios with photos from real people! See this diet blog. See also this list of exercise do’s and don’t for losing weight.

I recommend this book about the psychology of successful weight losers. Thin for Life: 10 Keys to Success by Anne M. Fletcher. Instead of focusing on nutrition, she focuses on lifestyle and motivation (which is the hardest part). This is the best book I’ve found so far.

I’m not an eat-all-the-bacon-you-want Atkins devotee. But the science piece by Gary Taubes about low carbohydrate diet seemed very convincing. (His piece was attacked by critics, but Taubes responded adequately).  Here’s a one hour video by  Gary Taubes which goes over everything more methodically (highly recommended). Here’s the money quote: “The amount of fat consumed has been steadily climbing, as has consumption of all calories. Individual caloric consumption jumped from 3,300 calories per day in 1970-79 to 3,900 in 1997, an 18 percent increase. Per-person consumption of fat grams increased from 149 to 156, a 4.5 percent increase.”

See this June 2009 study suggesting that being  slightly overweight (i.e., BMI between 25-29) might confer health advantages over being average or slightly underweight.

See this August cover story by John Cloud about why exercise may not reduce weight as well as once thought because it can increase appetite. Mike Howard writes a detailed response to the Time article, saying  that

In the meta-analyses (compilation of studies) regarding exercise and weight loss, exercise typically has a “modest” effect on weight loss. Again, it’s not going to do much in the absence of dietary change. On studies that have a diet only, exercise only, and exercise plus diet groups, the exercise plus diet groups (with scant exception) come out on top when it comes to weight/fat loss. Diet only, almost always beats out exercise only…. One very well conducted 12 week study by Kramer et. al., which included both aerobic, strength training, and a dietary control, showed the following results. Fat mass losses – diet only: 6.7kg, diet/cardio: 7kg, diet/cardio/resistance: 10kg. Most noteworthy – the D+C+R group lost almost no lean tissue whatsoever, whereas the diet only group lost almost 3kg worth of lean tissue.

Mike Howard writes another response about how to avoid binging after exercise and ranks the importance of various strategies: 1. Diet, 2.Strength training 3. Higher intensity cardio training, 4.  Lower intensity cardio training and 5. NEAT and other day-to-day movement (i.e. walking). Gretchen Reynolds summarizes exercise vs. diet research in April 2010. Although the evidence doesn’t suggest firm conclusions,  the link between exercise and weight maintenance seems a little stronger.

Lately, I’ve started wearing a pedometer. Here’s some advice about daily walking. From an advice site:

The recommended number of steps is 6000 for health, 10,000 for weight loss when you count all steps during the day. For weight loss, an uninterrupted walk each day of 4000-6000 steps is recommended.

I’ve been looking into the concepts of glycemic index and glycemic load as it relates to weight loss. Here’s a list of glycemic loads for most food and a recent analysis suggesting that a low glycemic load diet may only result in weight loss for people with certain insulin patterns. (More about the study).

Here’s a fascinating study suggesting that exercising before breakfast tends to help with weight reduction:

“Only the group that exercised before breakfast gained almost no weight and showed no signs of insulin resistance. They also burned the fat they were taking in more efficiently. “Our current data,” the study’s authors wrote, “indicate that exercise training in the fasted state is more effective than exercise in the carbohydrate-fed state to stimulate glucose tolerance despite a hypercaloric high-fat diet.”

Just how exercising before breakfast blunts the deleterious effects of overindulging is not completely understood, although this study points toward several intriguing explanations. For one, as has been known for some time, exercising in a fasted state (usually possible only before breakfast), coaxes the body to burn a greater percentage of fat for fuel during vigorous exercise, instead of relying primarily on carbohydrates. When you burn fat, you obviously don’t store it in your muscles. In “our study, only the fasted group demonstrated beneficial metabolic adaptations, which eventually may enhance oxidative fatty acid turnover,” said Peter Hespel, Ph.D., a professor in the Research Center for Exercise and Health at Catholic University Leuven in Belgium and senior author of the study.

At the same time, the fasting group showed increased levels of a muscle protein that “is responsible for insulin-stimulated glucose transport in muscle and thus plays a pivotal role in regulation of insulin sensitivity,” Dr Hespel said.

In other words, working out before breakfast directly combated the two most detrimental effects of eating a high-fat, high-calorie diet. It also helped the men avoid gaining weight.

Here’s some interesting research about green tea and weight loss: The antioxidant catechin in green tea raises resting metabolism by 4% (that’s about 80 calories per day). Yet another reason to drink that green tea!

May 2012 Update. Here is a java-based weight loss simulator. It helps you estimate the daily calorie targets and more importantly the targets when trying to maintain the weight. It takes a while to load, but it’s full-featured. Here’s an interview with the mathematician who created this simulator. He states:

…the conventional wisdom of 3,500 calories less is what it takes to lose a pound of weight is wrong. The body changes as you lose. Interestingly, we also found that the fatter you get, the easier it is to gain weight. An extra 10 calories a day puts more weight onto an obese person than on a thinner one.

Also, there’s a time constant that’s an important factor in weight loss. That’s because if you reduce your caloric intake, after a while, your body reaches equilibrium. It actually takes about three years for a dieter to reach their new “steady state.” Our model predicts that if you eat 100 calories fewer a day, in three years you will, on average, lose 10 pounds — if you don’t cheat.

Another finding: Huge variations in your daily food intake will not cause variations in weight, as long as your average food intake over a year is about the same. This is because a person’s body will respond slowly to the food intake.

June 13, 2008: 220 pounds (100 Kilograms). 29.8 BMI (This was my starting point).

Jan 1, 2009 goal: 200 pounds (90.7 kilograms); Actual Weight: 202 (See my post about how I tried to meet this goal).

July 1, 2009 goal: 190 pounds  (86 kilograms); Actual Weight: 202 (91.8 kilograms)

Jan 1, 2010 goal: 195 pounds (88.4) kilograms. Actual Weight: 210 (95.2 kilograms)

July 1, 2010 goal: Having a hard ceiling of 205 pounds. (A hard ceiling is a number I will never go over, even during the normal fluctuations of weight. To achieve this, my normal weight would need to be 202-3. Actual Weight: 215.5 (97.7  kilograms)

Jan 1, 2011 goal. 205 pounds (with a hard ceiling of 210). Actual Weight: 224 (102.1 kg) 30.4 bmi.

July 1, 2011 goal. 205 pounds (with a hard ceiling of 210). Actual Weight:

Jan 1, 2013 goal 220 pounds (with a hard ceiling of 212).

Change in BMI (I’m 6′ 0″”). June 2008: 29.8, January 1, 2009 (target: 27.1; actual= ), July 1 2009 (target: 25.8, actual=)

  • Just a test
  • Oct 29, 2012. 229 (For the record, these last 2 weeks I have been weighing myself with minor increases and decreases, but only got around to posting things now).
  • Oct 11, 2012 229. (For the record, if the number is the same, I will not normally add it here).
  • Oct 6, 2012 230. I will start measuring again regularly. Time to improve that BMI!
  • May 15 2012. I am guessing that I am 220-225. I have not been able to focus on weight and exercise, but now is probably a time to resume this. I won’t weigh myself as conscientiously as before, but frankly this is a good time to begin again.
  • Wed June 29 2011 222. After a weekend of overeating, I have settled on a regular exercise schedule. (finally!)
  • Wed June 22 223. (6100 steps) Started exercising again. Horray!
  • Tue June 21 223. Went off diet over weekend. Watermelon, kind of sick.
  • Fri June 10 222. (8400 steps). Ate grapes, cafeteria lunch.
  • Thur June 9. 220. I calculated that with my new living arrangement, I walk 6400 steps (about 2.8 miles).
  • Wed June 8. 221. I’m actually glad it’s not worse. A lot of things have happened. First, I am working downtown,  with a more regular workschedule. That means taking the bus (and doing a lot more walking!) confronting the temptation of a bottomless candy jar 10 feet away from me, lots of running-around-meals and no time to do formal exercise. My place isn’t even set up for that yet.  I can work down from that, and frankly I’m looking forward to it. I’ve hated being at this weight.
  • Tue Feb 1 218.5. Still unemployed…still losing weight!
  • Wed Jan 19 219.5 The new unemployment diet seems to be working! Life without chocolate seems strange.
  • Fri Dec 23 223
  • Thur Dec 23 222.5
  • Wed Dec 22 223.5
  • Mon Dec 20 225 I’ve stopped eating chocolate. I might resume that once my weight hits a certain target (200? 210? Let’s see how long I can hold out).
  • Thur Dec 16. This has been a period of great stress for me, and weight loss is not something I can concentrate on. I’m focused now on damage control with the hope that I can have a fresh start in 2011.  I won’t be weighing myself for the rest of the year — although I will start doing it regularly in January.
  • Tue Nov 30 227. It could have been worse! (2 thanksgiving dinners this year). Have two gigantic meals on Friday and Saturday, so preparing.
  • Fri Nov 19 226.
  • Thur Nov 18 228. This is very confusing. Aside from peanut butter, my diet hasn’t changed that radically. My exercise has declined to be sure, but not by that much. By the way, the infrequency of measurement does not imply lack of attention to weight. It usually means that my eating or sleeping schedule is erratic and I am not able to give a good/accurate reading.
  • Sat Oct 30 227. This has been a weird 3 weeks, but this is inexcusable.
  • Thur Oct 7 222
  • Mon Oct 4 226.5
  • Sat Oct 2 224
  • Fri Oct 1 222.5
  • Sat Sept 25 224. Not sure what’s going on. (Ate Thai Spice yesterday; sort of an off day).
  • Fri Sept 24 222.5 I expect the first 10 pounds or so will be easier to get off. I have learned how to lose weight and what missteps to avoid.
  • Thur Sept 23 223.
  • Wed Sept 22 223.5
  • Tue Sept 21 224
  • Mon Sept 20 224 I need to explain a lot  of things. I’ve been busy working on a book project that has consumed my time and disrupted my routine. I could not weigh myself in the mornings mainly because I could never come up with a standard time to do it that would be comparable.  (If dinner is delayed and becomes a late night snack, it’s hard to keep track of calories).  After some reflection, I think the causes of my weight gain could be attributable to 1)the schedule-disrupting effect of this work project, 2)the schedule disrupting effect of my dog and 3)eating too much peanut butter.  My diet hasn’t really deteriorated too much; I still eat food of fairly high quality — i just eat more of it…and without really being accountable for the amount.  I spend a lot of time in front of the computer screen, and I graze an awful lot. The good thing about a routine is that you have a sense about how much and how often you should eat.  My dog AJ has gotten me out of doors a lot more, but I end up doing a lot less exercise. The time for AJ collides with the time for exercise in the morning, and I say that as someone who has the luxury of working from home. Perhaps the underlying problem is having an unstructured schedule.  I think it will help to get back into weighing myself every morning.  Finally, the thing about peanut butter is that it’s hard to do portion control for it. (I have a similar problem with chocolate).  I tried to fit peanut butter into my diet in moderate doses, but it’s pretty clear that it won’t work except on rare occasions.
  • Sun July 11 216.  Yesterday found a lot of cheap fruit. Yippee! Talked to a nutritionist about high glycemic loads. Sigh, one more variable to worry about!
  • Fri July 9 216.  Wed I ate a lot of cheese!  Am getting back to working out though.
  • Mon July 6 217.5 Holy moly!
  • Thur July 1 216.  This has been pretty typical.
  • Fri June 11 215. Weighed in a little late in the day.
  • Thur June 10 217.5 I am sorry to report this, but I think that working from home is taking its toll. Not enough activity, too much easy access to food. I bought peanut butter yesterday, and am beginning to conclude that peanut butter + bagel may never be a part of my diet. Shucks!
  • Wed June 9 216. Grapes overdose.
  • Mon June 7 215.5 .Ok, cutting down on the peanut butter!
  • Sun June 6 217.5 surprising, but I’m sure we will be going down for the rest of the week.
  • Sat June 5 217.5 I’m not sure what’s going on. Yes, I ate a bit more than usual (mainly fruits & fresh peanut butter) and even exercised. I expect this to go down quickly but the fact it reached this high is really really scary.
  • Fri Jun 4 215.5
  • Thur June 3 214.5 I knew this would go up a bit, but yesterday was a very good day. I expect trends to go down for the next week.
  • Wed June 2 213. I didn’t deserve this, having slacked off on exercise and diet. However, I am back on track now. Hurrah!
  • Sat May 29 215.5
  • Fri May 28 215.5  Did housesitting at mom’s house for a week. Lots of junk food, no exercise. I’ll be working extra hard to get these off.
  • Fri May 21 212. Interestingly i practically starved myself yesterday (no reason). Before I ate dinner at midnight, I weighed myself (212.5). So after eating a small meal and sleeping 7 hours I am now 212. That’s how much sleeping time burns calories.
  • Thur May 20 213
  • Sun May 16  212.5 I’ll be going up over the next few days, but at last I feel like I’m regaining control over my life.
  • Sat May 15 213.5
  • Fr May 14 214
  • Thur May 13 213. Last week my father died, and so my diet was crazy. I did not work out for almost 2 whole weeks. This week I am getting back to normal. For the rest of the year, my diet will be on a tight leash. If I lose a pound a week, I could get back to 200 in no time. Watch me try.
  • Fri April 30 213.5 I knew a might be a little high (maybe it’s because of my recent splurge in Mexican food and my recent Austin weekend/wiener dog splurge). I’ve identified 2 areas: exceeding the chocolate dosage and pouring too much honey on my oatmeal. Also, on shopping days, I tend to get stuffed on peanut butter. But generally, I  haven’t been eating a lot or big meals. I expect this to go down to 210 in a week, but still this only underscores the collision between perception and reality.
  • Sun April 19 209.5 parents yesterday, shopping. peanut butter, yeah!
  • Sat April 17 209 Over the last few weeks I’m sure my weight has fluctuated, but I’m getting it under control.
  • Fri March 26 210.  This is encouraging news. I haven’t totally improved my diet and lifestyle, but I’m starting to exercise more regularly.
  • Fri Mar 12 211.5 This is hopeful, but I know yesterday I had several big meals. It will bounce back, but I think SXSW will knock a pound or two off me.
  • Wed Mar 10 213 I hope to get under 210 by the end of next week. (I’ll be at sxsw conference)
  • March 1 213.5 I am still not getting onto a normal schedule, but at least I am aware of the enormity of the problem.
  • Thur Feb 25 214.5 I am shocked, but this is a teachable moment. First, in my opinion my diet has not changed all that radically (although occasionally I will eat too much chocolate on one day and eat too much when visiting family). Second, having a dog has disrupted my schedule. It has made it impossible to do the daily exercises although I thought it was being offset by all the dog walks I am taking. Third, my work schedule has been intense lately, and I have disregarded certain things and become a night owl. Fifth, I have actually gone from a 3 meal day to a 2 meal day, so that is why I am surprised at the sudden jump. I can’t really say which is driving my weight up; suffice to say, I will be weighing in a lot more regularly from now on.
  • Thur Feb 4 211.5
  • Wed Jan 20 to Wed Feb 3 I’ve been busy on work deadlines and trying to adjust to living with my new dog. Truthfully, I’ve been ODing on chocolate and my sleep schedule has been upside down; I wonder if that had anything to do with it.
  • Tue Jan 19 210
  • Mon Jan 18 210.5
  • Sat Jun 16 211
  • Tue  Jan 12 211.5. I’m back on schedule. Also, I’ve thoroughly cleaned my living room which gives more room for exercises. I need to mention that the reason I skip days is not that I’ve “played hookey” (although sometimes it’s true). The main reason is that there is something unusual about my eating or waking schedule so that the reading wouldn’t be a fair comparison.
  • Sat Jan 9 213. This is extremely discouraging. I knew there would be a weight increase — just not that much! (I don’t feel enormous!) Last Wednesday was a big festive occasion, but I returned to diet immediately after that. On the bright side, I have done spring cleaning (well, winter cleaning) in my apartment in preparation for my dog. Suddenly the living room is roomier and easier to do daily workouts in. Also, the dog should get me out walking more. (It has been cold all week, and I’ve stayed indoors a lot).
  • Jan 1 2010 ???????? I’m guessing 210. I’ve been unable to weigh myself
  • Fri Dec 18 to Thur Jan 7. Wow, I didn’t weigh myself once!  I’ve had a few unusual and very appetizing few weeks. Lots of parties. Yesterday for example attended Trinity U.’s annual job networking party. Those shrimp with bacon things were divine!
  • Thur Dec 17 208.5 . All right! We’re on a roll! I want to reach 205 by Jan 1!
  • Wed Dec 16 209.5 Settling down to normalcy.
  • Tue Dec 15. 210. This really concerns me. My goal is to hit 205 by New Years.
  • Tue Dec 8 to Mon Dec 14. Took a break. Big party at parents. Weekend of Lost episodes, etc.
  • Mon Dec 7 207.5 This is somewhat low (yesterday I fasted). But it’s notable that I decided to remove beef from my diet.
  • Wed Nov 25 to Sun Dec 6. Thanksgiving + 6 days of the flu. Didn’t weigh myself at all. Ate weird stuff. I wasn’t myself.
  • Tue Nov 24. 211. I knew I had slacked off, but this is surprising. Oh well.
  • Tue Nov 17. 207. Lucky.
  • Fri Nov 13 to Mon Nov 16. 208. Dinner at mom’s house Saturday. General weekend laziness.
  • Thurs Nov 12 208.5. Black-eyed peas plus a ton of oatmeal.
  • Sat Nov 7 to Wed Nov 11. Fluctuates. I think I went down to 207 before rising to 209 again on Wednesday. Curiously, my diet was fairly normal (as was my exercise routine).
  • Fri Nov 6 207.5 Oddly I fell asleep before eating dinner. But I still think the number will be descending anyway.
  • Thur Nov 5 208 Catching up. I’m skipping lunch permanently now.
  • Wed Nov 4 209 inexplicable. Maybe because no exercise?
  • Sun Nov 1-Tue Nov 3. 207. biking 2 hours yesterday.
  • Sat Oct 31. 209.5 This was shocking; o dietary detours.
  • Thur Oct 29 – Fri Oct 30 208.5 Progress is slow but steady.
  • Wed Oct 28 209. Thus begins the descent from the weekend splurge. (I started my contract job yesterday also).
  • Tue Oct 27 209.5. I expect this to plummet over the next few days, but still a  worrisome development.
  • Fri Oct 23 to Mon Oct 26. Weekend party in Dallas. Totally off diet
  • Tue Oct 13 to Thur Oct 22. Fluctuates. Haven’t been good. 207.5
  • Mon Oct 12 207
  • Wed Oct 7 to Sun Oct 11.  207-8 Erratic diet. Quite worrisome. Lots of grapes! steak!
  • Tue Oct 6 207. Lots of exercise today, but ate several tortillas with avocados (which are supposed to be healthy, albeit high in calories).
  • Mon Oct 5 206
  • Sun  Oct 4 207
  • Wed Sept 23 to Sat Oct 3. My diet has not been maintained, especially during my DC trip.  207
  • Tue Sept 22. 206.5
  • Sat Sept 19 to Mon Sept 21. Way off diet (High school reunion!).  Too afraid to weigh myself!
  • Fri Sept 18 206.5
  • Thur Sept 17 207. Frankly I am shocked that the weight hasn’t gone down. I have pretty much reduced calories by at least a third since Sunday.
  • Wed Sept 16 207.5
  • Tue Sept 15 207
  • Mon Sept 14. 206.5 I expect this to go down over the next few days, but I’m still not close to the 200 range anymore.
  • Sun Sept 13. 208. This is shocking. I had strayed from my diet, but not by THAT much. (I was 204 early in the previous week).
  • Tue Sept 1. 203. Frankly I am relieved.
  • Sat Aug 29-Mon Aug 31. 204? Includes my daylong marathon of watching Lost episodes.
  • Fri August 28 205.
  • Mon Aug 10 to Thur Aug 27. 204-5. After one relapse, I’ve been steady at 204-5, unable to get out of that rut. But I’ve started exercising more religiously.
  • Sun Aug 9. Getting caught up. I’ve decided that exercising out of bed is the only way to guarantee I’ll actually do it.
  • Wed Aug 5-8 203-4.  Big meals, general laziness.
  • Tue Aug 4. 202.5 I skipped a meal yesterday (breakfast) with a slightly larger dinner than usual.
  • Thur July 30 to Mon Aug 3. Hi, in the 204-206 range. But on Monday finally I exercised and getting on schedule again!
  • Wed July 29 204.5. Shocking!
  • Mon July 27 203
  • Friday July 24 202.5
  • Thur July 23 202.5
  • Wed July 22. 204. Owww. (This will be going down tomorrow I guarantee).
  • Tue July 21 203.5 Oops.
  • Mon July 20: 203. This was kind of disappointing. Slight overeating at parents; also Sunday OD on cherries.
  • Fri July 17 to Sun July 19: 201.
  • Thur July 16. 201. Job interview today. Early morning workout gave me energy!
  • Wed July 15 201. A welcome surprise. I really cut back on Monday, but Tuesday was back to normal.
  • Tue July 14: 202. Morning workout, bicycle errands.
  • Wed July 8 to Mon July 13. Unknown. Slight overeating on Saturday (family event), lots of grapes. Sunday, no exercise, but by Monday I was caught up.
  • Tue July 7 202. Finally, caught up on housekeeping and exercising and eating.
  • Mon July 6  202.5 I don’t seem to be budging away from this number.
  • Sun July 5. 202.5
  • Sun June 28 to July 4. Jumping  between 203 and 204.
  • SAt June 27 203
  • Wed-Fri June 24-26: 204.5
  • Tue June 23 204  The trend is good, but today I sort of broke my diet. Curse that Wisconsin cheese!
  • Mon June 22 204.5 Ate big shrimp creole dinner. I should be coming down from that.
  • Sun June 21 205. For dinner I ate nothing but brussel sprouts (a day of strict dieting). Oh well.
  • Sat June 20 205
  • Fri Jun 19 204.5
  • Thur 18 205. Yesterday with niece and nephew + exercise. Big Vietnamese dinner at Pho24, lots of blueberries, one scoop of ice cream from Baskin Robbins
  • Wed June 17 205.5 This is pretty shocking. I think it’s water weight from all the watermelon I’ve been eating.
  • Tue June 16 204.5
  • Mon June 15 205.5 Birthday party at brother’s house, babysitting at mom’s house, no time for exercise = disaster.
  • Sat June 13 202.5
  • Fir Jun 12 201.5 Ok, I don’t feel that I “deserved” 201 so that’s ok.
  • Thur Jun 11 201. Yabba dabba doo! I am excited because yesterday I didn’t workout and didn’t feel hungry for some reason.
  • Wed Jun 10 202.5. Lots of exercising yesterday. Gosh, if only people were out of work all the time, they would have no problem finding time to exercise!
  • Tue June 9 203. Slow but steady progress
  • Mon June 8. 203.5 Ok, it’s official. I’m backsliding! My goal is to get down to 200 by July 1.
  • Tue June 2 to Sun June 7. Fluctuated between 202 and 204.
  • Mon June 1 204. Had buffet at Thai place with Linda. Even though we worked out, one buffet was still enough to ruin things.
  • Sun May 31 203.5 getting better.
  • Sat May 30 204
  • Fri May 29 205 still in recovery mode
  • Thur May 28 206. Yes, I knew this would come.
  • Sun May 17 through Wed May 27. I’ve had several notable slips, especially Tue May 26. In the first week I think I maintained my wait; but I’m very worried about this week. I will know tomorrow!
  • Sat May 16 202.
  • Fri May 15. 202
  • Wed May 13. 204. Definitely a glitch. Watermelon + fried chicken. Eek!
  • Mon May 11 200.5. A miracle. Ate a delicious piece of cheesecake (actually half a piece for both days). It was divine, and I expected to see repercussions. Maybe it will show up tomorrow.
  • Saturday May 9 201.5 Getting to more sane levels. Yesterday was a very light meal day. It’s looking clear that I’m not going to get to 190 by July. However, I’m going to try to get it comfortably into the 190s.
  • Friday May 8 203. Watermelon the culprit?
  • Thur May 7 202.5 Wow,  ODing on watermelon. I’ve always found watermelon to be a weight gainer.
  • Wed May 6 201. Perhaps Tue was a fluke, with all those grapes. Still my body feels flabby. Need to work out more!
  • Tue May 5 203. Wow, depressing. Yesterday my diet slipped (eye of beef at mom’s house), but the other days didn’t seem so bad.  Also, I’ve been eating a LOT of grapes recently. Could that be fattening?
  • Thur April 30 201 KFC yesterday, but so good!
  • Thur April 23 to Wed April 29. between 200 and 201.
  • Wed April 22 200.5 Aftereffects of Sunday. I should be going down.
  • Tue April 21 200.  Getting back into the swing of things. (Oh, also, I skipped a meal yesterday! Need to go shopping too).
  • Mon April 20 201
  • Sat April 18 to Sun April 19. 202 I haven’t had a regular schedule of anything recently.
  • Fri April 17 202
  • Thur April 16 201.
  • Wed April 8 to Wed April 15. fluctuated between 200 and 202
  • Tue April 7 202.5
  • Mon April 6 202.
  • Sun April 5 203 Absolutely shocking. True on Thursday night had a party at Tom’s house, Friday night 2 Vietnamese sandwiches and refreshments at the storytelling event, but egad, can’t I go off diet for a single day! On saturday I ate practically NOTHING!
  • Sat April 4 ?
  • Fri April 3 ?
  • Thur April 2 198.5
  • April 1 199
  • Tue Mar 31 200
  • Mon Mar 30 201
  • Sun Mar 29 203. Wow! Yesterday ate dim sum breakfast and chinese food for dinner. But extreme portion control! no exercise! no oatmeal! fluke but….
  • Sat Mar 27
  • Fri Mar 26 200
  • Thur Mar 26 200
  • Wed Mar 25 202. This is the max.
  • Tue Mar 24  201.5 This has been the week of backsliding
  • Mon Mar 23 199
  • Sun Mar 22 198.5 This takes into account the splurge on Friday.
  • Sat Mar 21 197.5 Honestly I have no idea how I lost this weight.
  • Thur Mar 19 199.5 ate a lot of junk food yesterday. Returning to Houston.
  • Wed Mar 18 199
  • Tue Mar 17 198.5
  • Mon Mar 16 197.5
  • Sun Mar 15 199. 14000 steps at SXSW. Barbecue + soup .
  • Saturday Mar 14 198.0 Eat tacos last night in Austin–ugh!
  • Friday Mar 13 197.5
  • Thur Mar 12 198.5 I really have been exercising and reducing diet. Hoping to get below 198, but oh, well!
  • Wed  Mar 11 198.5 Ate a LOT of brussel sprouts yesterday.
  • Tue Mar 10 198 (I have been cutting back quite a bit).
  • Mon Mar 9 199
  • Sun Mar 8 198.5 (this might be a misreading).
  • Sat Mar 7 199.5
  • Fri Mar 6 200
  • Thur Mar 5 199.5
  • Wed  Mar 4 199.5 Ate very little yesterday.
  • Tue Mar 3 201 My last day at work!
  • Mon Mar 2  202
  • Sun Mar 1 202.5 Whoopsie. Strangely I missed a meal yesterday.
  • Sat Feb 28 202
  • Fri Feb 27 202. Making up for Tuesday’s splurge.
  • Thur Feb 26. 204.5 Truly alarming, went to a nice dinner Tuesday night and then ended up skipping exercises for 2 days. Yikes!
  • Wed Feb 25 ?
  • Tue Feb 24 201.5
  • Mon Feb 23 200 Sorta fasted yesterday.
  • Sun Feb 22 201.5. I sorta OD’ed on carbs yesterday. Today was movie watching night.
  • Sat Feb 21 202.5 Ok, I had an off day yesterday.
  • Fri Feb 20 200. Aha, if I weigh  myself AFTER exercising, I can reap the advantage immediately!).
  • Thur Feb 19 200.5 (catching up on workouts, plus recovery from that awful/terrific chicken night!)
  • Wed Feb 18 didn’t weigh. I had fried chicken last night!
  • Tue Feb 17 202.5
  • Mon Feb 16 203.5 This has got to stop. Aside from not exercising as much as I should, my eating hasn’t changed all that much.
  • Sun Feb 15 202.5 Whoa Nelly!
  • Sat Feb 14 201.5 Not really!
  • Fri Feb 13 201 I bet I will lose a pound over the weekend.
  • Thur Feb 12 201.
  • Wed Feb 11 202 Ate hamburger last night and did not exercise. Slacker!
  • Tue Feb 10  201
  • Mon Feb  9 201
  • Fri Feb 6 203.
  • Fri Jan 31 to Thur Feb 5. I haven’t weighed myself and seem to have gone off diet.
  • Thu Jan 29 201
  • Wed Jan 28 200
  • Tue Jan 27 201
  • Mon Jan 26 201.5
  • Sun Jan 25 200. (See, I told you so! I told you so!) Did a lot of bike riding on Saturday.
  • Sat Jan 24 201.5 (A fluke, I’m pretty sure the next few days will be going down).
  • Fri Jan 23 200.5
  • Wed-Thur Jan 21-22 I think I hovered around 200 or 201
  • Tue Jan 20 200 Day off yesterday.
  • Mon Jan 19 201.5 Biking yesterday really helped!
  • Sun Jan 18 202
  • Sat Jan 17 202.5
  • Fri  Jan 16 202
  • Thur Jan 15 202.5
  • Tue Jan 13. 201.5. I’m mystified. I went off diet last weekend, and even OD’ed on tortilla chips last night.
  • Friday Jan 9-Mon Jan 12. I have forgotten to weigh myself or weighed myself at wrong times. Sorry!
  • Thur Jan 8 Unknown. Attended a dinner party for my college. Great food, a feast. I ate two plates of vegetables before the main course (and no carbs). Kind of curious what effect if any this would have.
  • Wed Jan 7 200.5 Strangely at 5:00 AM, I weighed 200 and at 7:00 I weighed 200.5 (even though I hadn’t eaten anything and just finished exercising).
  • Tue   Jan 6 201. Yesterday overdosed on grapefruit from someone at work. Oh, the excess!
  • Mon Jan 5 201. More wacky readings. 198.5, 200, 201. Maybe it’s time to buy a new scale?
  • Sun 201  My bathroom scale was giving all sorts of wacky readings. Maybe the roaches were playing a practical joke?
  • Sat Jan 3 201 (Ate homemade bratwurst and lovely rosemary bread from Whole Foods. Delicious, but a little much. 1 workout and 1 hour of bike riding didn’t compensate for that. Oh, well.
  • Fri Jan 2 200.5 (Actually I dipped to 200 yesterday, so I sorta made my goal).
  • Thur Jan 1 202. Wow, disappointment, I’ve been watching my diet all week. Perhaps my body wasn’t ready to adjust. (But now I have time to exercise at least).
  • Wed Dec 31 202. This is very wierd, but I expect this is an anomaly. I’ll be down to 200 in no time.
  • Tue Dec 30 201.  2 workouts yesterday, with strict controls on my diet.
  • Mon Dec 29 202.5 I could have lost more weight if I exercised this weekend. But I’m back on track for the next few days as I try to starve myself for Jan 1!
  • Sun Dec 28 203 Instead of exercising, spent the day reading articles about diet by science writer Gary Taubes. Wow, that was strenuous!
  • Sat Dec 27 204.5 I have found a culprit for weight gain: going to parents’ house!
  • Friday Dec 26 206. This week has been crazy.
  • Mon-Tue Dec 22-23. Unfortunately a malfunctioning refrigerator and a day of phone calls have thrown my diet out of whack. ON Monday I was 202.5, but I feel sure that on Wednesday it will be at least 203.
  • Sun Dec 21 204. This is profoundly disturbing. Eating junk. The last two days I’ve been cleaning up house, doing errands.
  • Fri Dec 19 201. This went down, but last night I od’ed on chocolate! Expect it to rise.
  • Thur Dec 18 202 This will go down
  • Wed Dec 17 201.5 Steak last night, but did exercises. I can handle it (I think).
  • Tue Dec 16 202 Took the bus to work, which meant more walking.
  • Mon Dec 15 202.5 Still trying to reach 200 by New Years.
  • Sun Dec 14 203.5
  • Sat Dec 13 203.5
  • Tue  Dec 9-12 204. I overate on 2 consecutive days.
  • Mon Dec 8 202.5 Mondays tend to be good for my weight measurement.
  • Sun Dec 7 203. Fallout from Xmas party.
  • Sat Dec 6 202.5 Say what?
  • Fri Dec 5 201. I’ve been cutting back.
  • Thur Dec 4  I’ve been cutting back.
  • Wed Dec 3 202. Ok, Tuesday night I od’ed on potato chips and worked late. This is a fluke, and I’ll be paying the price in the next few days.
  • Tue Dec 2 203 Finally on the exercise routine
  • Mon Dec 1 203.5. Finally, and I’ve been starving myself.
  • Sun Nov 30 205. Still recovering from the Birthday/Thanksgiving Fiasco.
  • Sat Nov 29 205.5 Well, I’m not surprised at least.
  • Fri Nov 28 204. I knew bad news was a coming.
  • Thur Nov 27 201. Well I was ready to take on the worst.

(Note, when I first did this list, I started from earliest to latest. I decided to put latest on the top for convenience. Here is the remainder of my journey/struggle/goal).

  • June 13: 220
  • June 14: 221
  • June 15: 219.5
  • Mon June 16: 219.5
  • Tue June 17: 219
  • Wed June 18 219
  • Thur June 19 219.5 (damn that thunderstorm that prevented me from swimming!)
  • Fri June 20. 219 (luck)
  • Sat June 21 218.5 (I totally did not deserve this. Last night I was a slug).
  • Sun June 22 218. (almost forgot to eat dinner; also played midnight tennis!)
  • Mon June 22 219 (sorry, I fudged; forgot to weigh myself; this is a guess)
  • Tue June 23 219.5 (lazy)
  • Wed June 24  218 (day off, exercise day)
  • Thur June 25 217
  • Fri June 26 217
  • Sat June 27 217.5 (stupid #&$#$ cake! even 20 minutes extra swimming didn’t make up for it)
  • Sun June 28 217.5 (still punishing me for Friday’s cake–yes it was delicious).
  • Mon June 30 219 (!) Gaming group’s wife offers homemade brownies fresh out of the oven. How could  I have refused? Delicious though. (I ate only 2).
  • Tue Jul 1 218 (No exercise, but really I did not merit yesterday’s increase. I ate a minimalist Jack in Box hamburger too. Why are restaurant hamburgers always jumbo-sized?)
  • Wed Jul 2 217.5 Totally did not deserve this. Telecommuted yesterday, lots of random bored munching. Vow to walk around more. Do you burn cals when driving?
  • Thur Jul 3 216.5. Atypical but encouraging. Ate 2 small lunches, then for dinner, a plate of broccoli! Cleaned refrigerator. Lots of disgusting produce had to be tossed out.
  • Fri Jul 4 215. Probably a fluke. Ate extra large dinner, but I jumped on trampoline for 20 minutes!
  • Sat Ju 5 216. OD’ed a bit on chocolate and watermelon. PS, there are roaches in my scale!
  • Sun Jul 6. 216.5 More watermelon. Extra water weight. Not worried. Luckily, I swam before the rain fell.
  • Mon Ju 7. 218. Accidentally ate entire chocolate bar. Odd fact: Quakers sold chocolate bars to ward off impure thoughts. (This time I don’t think choco was 100% responsible for the backslide thought).
  • Tue Jul 8 218  Yesterday was no exercise day…but accomplished a lot of writing. A connection? Hmmm.
  • Wed July 9 218. No time to exercise. Arrived late.
  • Thur July 10 217.5 Slow progress. Alas, time to swim finally!
  • Fri July 11 218. KFC dinner. Ok, I slipped. If only more healthy fast food places were around my neighborhood!
  • Sat July 12 219. This backsliding hurts, but I had a semi-emergency to deal with.
  • Sun July 13 217.5 217.5 Rode my bike, carrying about 15 pounds of books in my backpack (from a newly opened bookstore).  That’s a workout!
  • Mon July 14 216.5 Another ride to the library (forgot to return a DVD). Maybe I should forget library books more often.
  • Tue July 15 217. Would have exercised, except I spent 2 hours troubleshooting my OLPC and Vista 64 install. Arrgh!
  • Wed July 16 217.5 . Wow, three bagels yesterday (P. from work brought them). Delicious.  Wow, even 45 minutes of swimming didn’t make up for it.
  • Thur July 17 217.5 Might have been lower if there weren’t dog poop in the swimming pool. Note to self: have backup exercise method.
  • Fri July 18 (a weighing on this day would be invalid, so I am skipping. Rest assured that the official count would probably not be reason for optimism)
  • Sat July 19 218.5. Honestly, yesterday was a bad day for my diet. A one pound gain is not bad, all things considered.
  • Sun Jul 20 215.5 Misleading. I fell asleep before eating dinner! Good way to lose weight is to skip meals. (By the way, I am very hungry).
  • Mon Jul 21 216.5 Cleaned house. I feel optimistic about how the rest of the  week will go.
  • Tue Jul 22 215.5 Finally making progress again. Also resumed my Sue Hitzman exercise vid which is great.
  • Wed Jul 23 215.5 Lately I’ve been liking vegetarian hamburgers… but where is the broccoli I thought I had in my fridge?
  • Thur Jul 24 215. Noticed something interesting. Weight tends to go down when I telecommute — even though I don’t maintain my diet very well on those days.
  • Fri Jul 25 216. I seriously think that backsliding on your diet takes 24-48 hours to show up on the bathroom scale! Wed I slipped, but Thur was pretty good.
  • Sat Ju 26 216.5 Yesterday was major backslide. Free kolaches at work, plus a scanning party (don’t ask!) with all sorts of refreshments. Plus arrived home–exhausted and too late to swim.
  • Sun Jul 27 215. Doesn’t make sense. The last two days my diet has been erratic, can’t explain the decrease. Ate very late. Does it take time for the food to “show up” on scale?
  • Mon Jul 28 215. Funny, my scale gives a different number depending on which part of the floor it is on. The number you see is in fact an average of multiple weighings at several locations.
  • Tue Jul 29 213.5 I fasted  a bit yesterday and did exercise. Expect backsliding, but still encouraging that I could make it to this point. I think I need a week to really arrive there.
  • Wed Jul 30 215. Jump does not worry me; diet still going strong. Friend points out that it’s best to compare today  with other Wed numbers to see trends.
  • Thur Jul 31 215.5 Oh no! Setback! But those Vietnamese sandwiches were delicious!
  • Fri Aug 1 213.5 Exhausted from work deadline last night. Off to Austin to swim at Barton Springs!
  • Sat Aug 2 ? New Braunfels tubing, 5 hours!
  • Sun Aug 3 ?  Barton Springs, swimming 3.5 hrs!
  • Mon Aug 4 212.5 Recuperating from massively entertaining Central Austin aquatic trip.
  • Tue Aug 5 213 Madness at supermarket b/c of “hurricane.” Still recovering.   Maybe some of my “tight” clothes will be wearable again.  Body ached from weekend swimming extravaganza.
  • Wed Aug 6 214 Growing complacent. Yesterday learned that portion control is very hard with home-cooked recipes. I’ll recover.
  • Thur Aug 7 213. Best way to cheat on your daily weighing: weigh yourself later & later each day!
  • Fri Aug 8 212 Method #2 for cheating on daily weighing: skip dinner (honestly I wasn’t hungry).  For breakfast today: yesterday’s basa fish!
  • Sat Aug 9 212 Despite skipping lunch yesterday, still no weight loss!
  • Sun Aug 10 213 Confusing.  Ok, I OD’ed on grapes, but rest of the day was fairly normal (at Barcamp Houston, etc). Today I’ll have to work extra hard!
  • Mon Aug 11 213 Wow, I was a total mothball yesterday. God is smiling. Fun fact: 1 jelly belly has 4 calories.
  • Tue Aug 12 212.5 Wow…this was a 3 cookie day!  Power outage, but still lost .5 pounds. Defies human explanation.
  • Wed Aug 13 212 Working out in the morning has its perks…but really, who has time to do this every day?
  • Thur Aug 14 211 Stayed up late last night ordering my Lumix DMC-TZ5A camera. I wonder: does staying up late reduce weight?
  • Fri Aug 15 210.5 Welcome surprise. I actually had a  large (albeit very healthy) meal last night.  Plus, Randalls had a special on blueberries.
  • Sat Aug 16 211.5 Went off diet. Restaurant for lunch, a tootsie roll, lots of blueberries. Arrgh! At least I swam a lot.
  • Sun Aug 17 213 Another off-diet day. More blueberries! No time for exercise, but time for takeout Chinese food. Arrgh!
  • Mon Aug 18 213.5 I practically fasted yesterday, but Saturday’s pigout is catching up with me.  (Tomorrow should improve). Still, the magnitude of this setback gives pause for thought.
  • Tue Aug 19 213 Expect further improvement tomorrow.
  • Wed Aug 20 212.5 The funny thing is, I had relatively full meals yesterday, but I also exercised and slept very well.
  • Thur Aug 21 210.5 A fluke. Yesterday was nothing special. My metabolism must be extremely confused; maybe it should see a therapist?
  • Fri Aug 22 210.5 Definitely not a fluke. My coworker insists that Diet drinks are the cause of my weight gain. Nah, nah, you’re wrong!
  • Sat Aug 23 211.5 Because eating/workout habits remained identical yesterday, I’m convinced today is just a normal fluctuation. Today will be hard: 3 potential pigout opportunities (PPO).
  • Sun Aug 24 212.5.  I survived 3 potential PPOs yesterday successfully. This weight gain is a normal fluctuation (though still a bummer)
  • Mon Aug 25 211  Purely through being busy, I ate very little yesterday (but also exercised very little). This sounds about right.
  • Tue Aug 26 211 Was up until midnight fixing a friend’s hard drive and ..AOL mailbox. Ugh!
  • Wed Aug 27 212 Last night I was hungrier than unusual, ate a bit more…and guess what, I didn’t care!  Yesterday was relaxing. Today woke up to roaches in my cereal. Arrgh!
  • Thur-Fri Total Disruption. Someone stole my car! I’ve been too busy to even think about dieting or weighing myself.
  • Sat Aug 30 211.5 Today I get a haircut and learn how much long hair adds to your weight.
  • Sun. Absent. Busy.
  • Mon Sept 1 211. I have not been exercising. That half pound might be the result of haircut!
  • Tue Sept 2 208.5 Although I skipped a meal yesterday, I think this measurement or the ones from previous days are clearly in error.  It must be the haircut!
  • Wed Sept 3 207. Decelerating for my trip. If I can keep this (or near this), I’ll be happy).
  • Mon Sept 29. 197.5 (Back in USA). A shocking bit of good news. I expect my metabolism to increase a few pounds when adjusting to US life. But still I can manage it.
  • Tue Sept 30 198.5  Back in USA, catching up with things (finding my stolen car, getting back to work, etc).  I had two big lunches, but you know, that’s ok.
  • Thur Oct 2 198.  I’ve been feeling a little under the weather and still getting caught up.
  • Fri Oct 3 198.5 Most of this weight gain must have been grapes!
  • Sun Oct 5 200.5 This has got to stop! (I think today I will have time to resume my healthier lifestyle).
  • Mon Oct 6 200.5 I’m not really trying. Just catching up on sleep. Expect progress from this point on.
  • Tue Oct 7 202.0 This increase is getting scary, but I’m catching up on stuff.
  • Wed Oct 8 199.5 Not sure what’s going on here, but at least I’ve started working out again.
  • Thur Oct 9 199.5 Wow, it’s amazing how much better you feel on the day(s) after working out!
  • Fri Oct 10 200.5 A bit lazy yesterday. Oh well.
  • Mon Oct 13 201.5 Went off diet over the weekend.
  • Tue Oct 14 202.5 Scary, but not entirely unexpected. I’ll lose it.
  • Wed Oct 15 201.5  Have added a handful of blueberries to my diet (every evening). Frozen blueberries make a  lot of things possible.
  • Thur Oct 16 202. No exercise day. Bahhh!
  • Fri Oct 17 202.5. Lots of free food at work, including those famous Vietnamese sandwiches (of which I had 2). Definitely an off-diet day for me.
  • Sat Oct 18 203. I expected this.
  • Sun Oct 19 202.5 Ate junk food at parents house.
  • Mon Oct 20. 201.
  • Tue Oct 21 202.5
  • Wed Oct 22 204.5 Weekend splurge finally hitting.
  • Thur Oct 23  206.5 Splurged at local Lupe Tortillas. Fajitas to die far! Car flooding. Crazy night!
  • Fri  Oct 24 205. Trying to get my bearings back. Still spooked by how quickly this weight came back.
  • Sat Oct 25 203. Wow, loaded down on Snacks!
  • Sun Oct 26 202.5 This must be opposite day. Didn’t work out yesterday, but played Spore all day with nephew.
  • Mon Oct 27 200. Finally caught up on working out. Very sedentary day, felt like I would be 205 today. Opposite day is continuing….
  • Tue Oct 28 200.5 Falling very behind.
  • Wed Oct 29 200.5. Still falling behind. No time to exercise
  • Thur Oct 30. 203. Pizza day at work. The horrors!
  • Fri Oct 31 201.5. Starting to resume previous habits.
  • Sat Nov 1 202.5 This seems more realistic a measurement, but I think I can get it down now. BTW, last night I went to a social event and ordered brisket;  I swear 80% of the dish was pure fat.
  • Sun Nov 2 201.5
  • Mon Nov 3 201.5
  • Tue Nov 4 202
  • Wed Nov 5 202
  • Thur Nov 6 204 pizza day at work.
  • Friday Nov 7 203.5 trying to recover.
  • Sat Nov 8 204. Mabel’s birthday party yesterday.
  • Sun Nov 9 203.5
  • Mon Nov 10 203.5
  • Tue Nov 11 202. Strangely I seem to lose weight when I am home, whether working from home or on my day off. (When I am busy with social events, I gain weight).
  • Wed Nov 12 202. Might be cheating. Weighing myself a little later than usual.
  • Thur Nov 13 202.5 Oops. Payback from Tuesday. I expect to lose this.
  • Fri Nov 14 201.5
  • Sat Nov 15 203.5 House of Pies, what can I say?
  • Sun Nov 16. 203 MOm’s pepper steak.
  • Mon Nov 17 200.5 (I cannot explain this, although I did eat a lot less on Sunday).
  • Tue Nov 18 201 (I expect this to go down tomorrow).
  • (strangely, almost a week of posts were deleted. I moved from 201 to 203.5
  • Mon Nov 24 202. (Not bad after an out-of-town trip. Might gain tomorrow).
  • Tue No 25 202.
  • Wed Nov 26 201

Comments on this entry are closed.

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    Kenney