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August 2013

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Now I Know

Today, I drove to the University of Texas Fitness Institute and had my (iDXA)  body composition scan. I faced it. I don’t like what it said, but, there it is in living color. The 7 minute scan is pretty much like a bone density scan, with low radiation. It’s a non-invasive scan, but let me tell you, there’s no way to hide… no sucking in will help. Considered to be very accurate, it gives you reports on the fat in various parts of your body including legs, arms torso and hips. They even estimated the amount of visceral fat in your abdominal cavity near your organs. UGH.

The good news is that I have good bone density and a high amount of lean muscle mass. The bad news is that I’ve got a long way to go. I knew that, but here it is staring me in the face with real, indisputable numbers. My goal is to make my body fat number go down, a lot, while maintaining my lean muscle mass.

It was obvious to Julie, my fitness guru, that I know what I’m supposed to be doing and I like to exercise. I tend to think I’m doing it, but I’m really inconsistent. For the next 3 months, I will do my weight workouts twice a week and my cardio at least 3 times, probably more. I will track my exercise in My Fitness Pal (50poundMonkey) and keep my caloric intake around 1500-1600. I promised to eat a few veggies too (gulp). That’s really the test right there.

It's a starting place
It’s a starting place

Here’s my scan. It’s horrible, I know, but remember I’m laying down and everything flattens out. Okay, it looks awful. Don’t judge. You have NO idea how hard this is to post. I keep telling myself it’s just a starting point. We can compare the next one in three months.

It’s time to burn some fat, people!! (I almost left out that comma, and that could have been tragic!) It starts tonight with a hike with a hubby and a chubby Weimeraner.

…that lying b*tch!

The bathroom scale is a lying b*tch. There, straight up, I’ve said it. I hate that freaking scale. And as much as I hate it, and know that it lies to me, I go back to it. Like an abused puppy, I return with my tail tucked in hoping I won’t be kicked in the teeth only to step on the platform and be promptly and enthusiastically slapped in the face. Simultaneously, an angry, mean and alien voice in my head says, “you big-fat-overgrown-plain-brown-ugly-stupid cow…  (slight shrug and head tilt) nice for a cow though.”  As you may have surmised by this point, I’ve GAINED about 8 pounds. I’m feeling dejected, and royally and obscenely pissed with myself. I don’t hate myself, don’t get me wrong, I am a nice cow. <grin> Part of me wonders if even some of the gain is muscle. Maybe? Please?

This awesome news comes a day after my Arrosti doc told me to lay off CrossFit for about 8 weeks due to my lingering achilles / calf (ha! apropos, moooo)  issues. So, I’ve been doing a lot of digging around in my heart and head. What has worked for me before, why did it work, how can I do it again and will it work with a lower impact/less explosive movement type exercise? Tennis is enough of an impact sport, and I’m still playing, but, my other exercise needs to be more gentle for now. DING DING DING, I’ve got it! Body For Life worked well for me. I looked amazing when I was done with the 12 weeks and could bench press over 100 pounds. It worked because my ex-husband, who was doing it with me, was a task master (in a good way) and I was a wee bit competitive. It worked because I was tracking my body fat percentage, not the scale. (Alarm bells here!!!) Yes, it’s much lower impact, but very much weight lifting, clean eating and interval training. The hardest part is the body fat tracking.

Since my last successful round of BFL, new technology has come out in the realm of body fat testing. UT offers a DEXA scan which is very much like bone density testing (very low x-ray like test lasting about 6 minutes), but it focuses on soft tissue (fat). Traditionally, body fat tests broke results into fat mass, and lean mass. This technology breaks the data into 3 categories: fat, bone and muscle.  I’ve scheduled my appointment and will report on how it went and what I learn. My contact was very enthusiastic, and her specialty is weight loss. My happy bells are going off in my head. These are the numbers I need. I may not like them, but my goal will be to change them and I think that I can live with a higher number on the scale (b*tch!)  if my body fat percentage is healthy and awesome!

I’m an athlete, and muscle weighs more than fat… right? RIGHT????

Punch Me In the Gut

This Hit Me in the Gut

Nike has a great marketing department. I found this on their Facebook page. Check it out. As a marketing nerd, I love to look at ads. Give me a magazine and I’ll check out the ads, and rarely read the “hard content.”

This one though. I feel like I keep starting over.

The challenge I thought I was going to do at the gym, won’t work for me right now. My husband and I looked at it, and talked about it and he’s exactly right. Until I can eat the things on the paleo list, actually eat them and not just avoid them and starve (and get cranky I’m sure) and feel like a failure, I shouldn’t do it. I’m fairly competitive and I won’t let down my team. He knows this. Cue the tapes of our adventure racing days while I literally slept on my feet because I didn’t want to give up and nap. I won’t eat most of the foods on the Paleo plan. Therefore, I will only eat the meat, a few fruits and fall into depression and starvation. Not healthy or worth it and he hates to see me beat myself up and be miserable.

I will just have to figure out what works for me, and JUST DO IT. Yeah, that sounds right, but it sounds like my plan for the last ten years. Sigh.

 

 

 

This Called For Drinks

Pomegranate is a Fruit
Pomegranate is a Healthy Fruit!

And, the reset button. Do-overs happen. So, L and I decided an emergency meeting was in order. She had hurt her back, and had been wimping out for as long as I was gone. It was vital that we went back to where we started. Yes, the favorite Tex Mex place. I was supposed to start back at the Box on August 1st when we had finished our trip to Sweden and Denmark, chasing our 13 year old soccer player’s team around. It obviously didn’t happen. Round 2, literally! Pomegranate Cosmos for both because of the anti-oxidant qualities. It must work because my 3 day migraine has gone. I have no other explanation. See the little berries at the bottom?

So, we came up with another plan. We’ll join our gym’s “I do the impossible challenge.” We will be given 2 sessions a week with a “team” and we’ll be held responsible for journaling every bite, and every bit of exercise including between workout homework. Our team will be counting on us to get good grades on our journals and homework as well as the measurements and before and after pictures. The awesome thing is that the “challenge” finishes a week and a half before I leave for the big Irish wedding. Great ideas are hatched when L and I put our heads together for drinks. I’m not ashamed… they were POMEGRANATE!

Will I be voted off my team if I drink my fruit?

 

“Music For the Ears, Not the Eyes”

Beautiful

I love Adele’s music. Her voice is absolutely amazing– seriously amazing, and her attitude kicks ass — serious ass. She’s not your Lady Gaga, thank goodness. No offense, Gaga. Adele, has a voice that is more than a gift, like on a plane above human. She doesn’t need to parade around with a perfect body or shock folks with the perverse, because when she opens her mouth and releases that kind of music into the universe, nobody cares.

Okay, that’s not true. The regular low-class, trolls seem to make something of the way she looks. To me, she’s gorgeous. I, of the “hate my chubs” club couldn’t care less that she’s not swimsuit model material. That makes her better. Real. When asked recently in a Rolling Stone interview about the folks that talk about her weight, she said, “I make music for the ears, not the eyes.” You’re so much more than that, Adele. You’re music to the soul.

D-ficient

Eat Your D!

So, I had a doc tell me I was low in Vitamin D. I thought she was crazy. I play tennis in the Texas sunshine a lot. I have red hair and thin skin, how can I possibly be deficient?

I found an article by Dr. Mark Hyman and found out. Sunscreen, for starters, baby! I wear a lot of it. I read in a different article that frequent showers can also deplete your stores, ding ding ding! When I posted the doc’s article on my Facebook page I was surprised when so many friends immediately responded that they were also deficient and taking supplements. D is vital in so many ways, and I’m finding more and more reasons to supplement. Here’s the post by the doc.  Let me know what you think. Are you D-ficient too? Do you supplement? Thoughts?

Just Keep Swimming

Just Keep Swimming, 50 Pound Monkey
Just Keep Swimming

A month or two (or 3) ago, I bought some nice goggles and a swim cap. Yesterday, I finally swam some laps. Holy freaking wow, I forgot how hard it is! I keep hearing Dory, “Just Keep Swimming”

I’ve never been a swimmer, well, not a lap swimmer anyway. I learned to swim at 3, grew some gills and loved going to the pool as a kid. I hated the fact that my mom wouldn’t take me to the pool until after 4 pm because of my red hair and very fair skin. I get it now, but am not sure I’m over it. Luckily for me, the gym pool is inside so I can go anytime! I decided to go do it on my final push to look better for the wedding in Ireland. I know I’m not going to lose a ton of weight in the two months even with the CrossFit, but I am going to swim every day that I humanly can until my birthday at the end of the month. It’s tough! My heart felt like it was going to pound out of my chest, like it had to work harder. I suppose it has something to do with water pressure a bit, but man it felt good! And when you pull yourself out of the pool after a good swim, you feel like you weigh 3000 pounds.

Boy, I forgot how hungry you are too. Hmmm. Will this work?

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