Wednesday, March 25, 2009

My Fitness Eval and "The Biggest Loser"

First, the fitness evaluation. This is definitely not for the faint of heart. My body fat percentage puts me in the "Obese" category, which I find hard to believe, actually. I think I'm solidly in "Overweight." The pinch test she used would seem to have a lot of room for error.

Still, whether I believe the test was totally accurate or not, it is true that I have weight to lose, at least the 20 I want to lose and maybe even another 5 or 10 (if I believe the test). I also need to work on building my lean mass. I think I was secretly hoping to be told that I was fitter than I really thought I was, which didn't happen. I have been doing fairly well on logging my food for the last few weeks, so now it's time to work on cutting calories gradually and continue to focus on eating more healthy foods.

I did score in the "Excellent" range on core strength, thanks to all those Pilates classes. My sit-and-reach score was only "Average" and the modified push-up test was "Fair." Obviously there is a lot of room for improvement here.

I also had a high heart rate after the 3 minute step-up test and one minute for recovery. I think, though, that my heart rate tends to be higher than average and don't put a lot of credence in the 226 minus my age as my actual max heart rate. The heart rates that she was telling me I should have in my cardio sessions would have me barely breaking a sweat. I am supposed to check my resting heart rate and get back to her with that number to see if my range should be adjusted.

I am not sure what knowing these scores really changes. I already wanted to lose at least 20 pounds. I already wanted to work on boosting my strength. The whole reason I signed up for personal training was to get some help designing a strength training routine and help me integrate my various activities into more of a plan. I guess that it gives me a baseline so that three months from now, I could do this all again and see how much I improved. I'm not sure that's that interesting to me, though.

I'm not angry but I know this post sounds like I am. Actually, I was proud of myself because as I left the studio, I realized I still had time to make it to my Spinning class on the other side of town. Sweating for 45 minutes solid really helped and I was doing something constructive toward my goals instead of stewing in my disappointment.

I think I definitely want to get a heart rate monitor or replace the battery in the dead one I have. I am toying with the idea of getting a body fat scale but I think that could just become another number to drive me nuts. Probably better to focus on behaviors at this point and not on measurement.

On "The Biggest Loser," two things really struck me.

The first was that Tara was contemplating quitting just because other people were jealous of her success and were gunning for her. It struck a chord in me -- I think that is probably something a lot of people can relate to. Tara wants everyone to like her so bad that she considered giving up something she wanted to please other people.

Secondly, I was disappointed in Ron, actually angry at him, for suggesting that Aubrey should "Go home and help her dad." Aubrey's dad is in the 500 pound range and whenever anyone confronts him, he says, "I am making changes" and then looks away. Ron should know better, as someone who has been overweight his whole life, than to think that someone is going to be able to "fix" a person in that situation. All Aubrey (and Mandy) can do is be a good example and provide support if he asks for it. If they talk to him too much about it, it will just make him more skittish and reluctant to try for fear of failing and disappointing them.

I need to remember both of these examples as I try not to let my fear of failure OR success get in the way of working toward my goals. Luckily I seem to have shaken whatever was bothering me so much on Monday and feel ready to take on a challenge.


  1. And neither of us got into Aubry's behavior after going home . . .

    I just wanted to mention something about the body fat thing. I've had a scale that gives me the percentage of body fat, so I don't put a lot of faith in the information for other than comparison purposes. First of all, it can change depending on your level of hydration. I can get anything from average weight to over weight. Secondly, if you enter everything correctly EXCEPT put "male" for your gender, the body fat percentage spirals down like a rock in the ocean. So, don't fret over that one too much!

  2. Your fitness evaluation sounded awesome. I also thought you were right on track with focusing on behaviors and not numbers. You are heading in the right direction.


"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