Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Setting an official weigh-in day

So far, the most consistently useful tool I've found for this weight loss thing is FitDay. I started using it about eight years ago, and over time it has evolved to include more and more useful tools. It's free on the web, though there is a premium PC edition, and it has all kinds of reports and other geeky tools. You can find out what your fat/carb/protein ration is, whether you're getting all the right nutrients in your diet, and of course you can make lots of nifty graphs like the one above. This graph looks deceptively simple, heading in a perfect downward slope. Why is that? Because I weigh myself a few times a week and record the best weight. What I'm thinking might be more useful is to have a consistent weigh-in day and record my weight on that day each week. I'm thinking that Wednesdays are probably the best day for this.

I could weigh myself every day and record the weight, but that might be a little much. One thing that the daily weigh-ins do tell me is that all those ups and downs aren't really meaningful until you notice the general trend, which is hard to do without some kind of record over time. Two days ago I weighed 177, this morning I weigh 172.5. It's impossible that I could have lost any significant amount of fat in this short a time, so it has to be the body weather that we all experience. It would be worth weighing and recording daily if I were the kind of person who could treat it all just as information, but I think once a week is probably enough most of the time.

What have I been doing lately? I'm logging my food and exercise almost daily and trying to keep my calories around 1800 a day. I'm still trying to follow the good nutrition guidelines from Weight Watchers. I'm cooking more at home. I'm trying to be conscious, most of the time, that it's better for me to have meals that include carbs, fat, and protein and not just starch, starch, and sugar. I've been including nuts and nut butter in my diet because they help me feel more satisfied. I've been exercising almost daily, mostly outdoors. I started taking a good multivitamin and supplementing it to get the levels of certain vitamins recommended in When Your Body Gets the Blues. I've been listening to Jillian Michaels's podcasts for inspiration when I feel low. Basically, I've been taking a little from here, a little from there, and making my own plan that works for me most of the time.

I have a lot of ups and downs, though. Don't let this super-cheery post fool you. The thing is, I tend to post more about the weight loss thing on the days when I feel good about how things are going. Just like the weigh-ins, there's still this impulse to keep the picture rosy. I think a weekly weigh-in post will give us all a clearer view of what's really going on.

2 comments:

  1. A weight loss graph is a wonderful tool! It's one way to show a trend and not get as hung up on the normal fluctuations. When I was working to reach my goal, I came to LOVE my graph and hung it up in the bedroom where I'd see it every morning and night. Good luck!

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  2. You said:
    "... it's better for me to have meals that include carbs, fat, and protein and not just starch, starch, and sugar."

    How true. Starchy and sugary foods send my diabetic blood sugar levels sky-high. I'm really trying to watch what kinds of carbs that I eat, and to get plenty of fiber.

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"Count your calories, work out when you can, and try to be good to yourself. All the rest is bulls**t." -- Jillian Michaels at BlogHer '07