Weigh-in #37: 1.4lb loss

Peak: 435 lb
Previous: 318.6lb
Current: 317.2lb
Loss this week: 1.4lb
Total Loss: 117.8lb

Exercise this week was 3x C25K runs and 1x weights session. I didn’t count my calories but I did eat vegetarian for 6/7 of the days (as in I didn’t eat meat, not that I was eating vegetarians). On saturday I had some chicken, but felt like I was doing so because I could (and hence should), rather than because I really wanted meat. Afterwards I had buyer’s remorse, the same feeling I get after eating some high-calorie treat: “Is that it?” As with most food, the “pleasure” was short-lived.

Having already made huge changes to my diet, ditching meat seems trivial in comparison, but it scares me a little that I could become a vegetarian. I thought I was a card-carrying meat lover, the sort that would chastise vegies for being pussies: it turns out I might be one of them! The mental shift concerns me, my core values are changing, I feel like I’m becoming a different person; not that I dislike the new me, far from it, but being conscious of the change is weirding me out a little.

We can change, both physically and mentally‚Ķ and we’re allowed to.

Hell yea! I can run 2 miles.

C25K W5D3 – done. I feel amazing.

On Thursday I re-did W5D2 and I found it tough going (8min x2); since then I’ve been dreading today’s run.

After the first easyish 10-minutes I started the mental fight with myself. I threw everything I had at it, going through different things that could motivate me: I’m playing a game of rugby and it’s an important play, I need to work hard for the team; I’m back in school and being chastised by the PE-teacher (fuck you!); my family and friends are watching me, come on Rich; there’s no way I’m going to write a blog post about failing this again, keep going; oooh! the Rocky Theme just came on, ruuuuuun! Etc. That got me to 17-minutes and then I realised I would make it :).

I can run 2 miles!

C25K W5D1 – v2

A week ago I wrote:-

“That wasn’t too bad. After each 5-minutes I was pretty wiped but I managed to keep 10kph pace throughout. “

Today I ran the same session and it was much easier than that. I wasn’t wiped at the end of each run and I was actively pushing myself harder in the last run, especially loving that Rocky and Eye Of The Tiger came on back-to-back (totally gunna be my secret weapon for W5D3!). It’s remarkable how much progress newbs like me can make in a week and exciting to project it forward. What will I be running in a year from now, if I keep running 3-times a week? 🙂

Also, when I looked in the mirror afterwards I had some black gunk on my forehead, the remains of some poor bugs that got in my way. Beep beep! Coming through.

Weigh-in #36: strong loss

Peak: 435 lb
Previous: 322.0lb
Current: 318.6lb
Loss this week: 3.4lb
Total Loss: 116.4lb

Strong loss! Into the 3-teens and getting so close to 300lb now.

Exercise was 3xC25K runs and one weights session (need to do more weights). Food was good, apparently ‚Äî I’m officially no longer tracking calories. This is partly because I’m lazy/bored of it and partly because I seem to have my nutrition under control: most week days are mostly the same, dinner is the only thing I have to think about. If one meal is the only time I can screw things up, then it doesn’t really matter if I do occasionally. When I do have a larger lunch, or when I’ve had a beer after work, the solution is pretty simple: eat less for dinner.

This week I’m trying something slightly different with my food though: I’m going to become a weekday vegetarian. Over the last couple of years I’ve been confused by the morality of eating meat; I’m still not sure of my position, but generally “eat less meat” seems to be a good thing however you look at it.

Fail/Quit (W5D3)

Arse. Went out for W5D3 this evening and choked after 16-minutes. I was breathing heavily and my heart was bursting, but when I look deep down I know it was a quit and not a fail (hat-tip: http://didijusteatthatoutloud.blogspot.com/2010/04/quality-of-try.html); I could have pushed harder, I could have lasted another another four measly minutes and that makes me pissed at myself. Next week will be a repeat of Week-5 and I’ll slay W5D3 at the weekend. I’ve also discovered a little park (cemetery!) nearby and will now be doing all my running outside, which is nice (you are all right, running outdoors >> treadmill, especially ones that break down ;)).

Putting a positive spin on it though, it almost certainly was the farthest and longest that I’ve ever run for. In the bigger context of my weight-loss, I now have a new cardio outlet (running) that I enjoy doing: I have been bitten by the bug. I’ve invested in some new gear as I see this being a longterm hobby. There’s something natural about being able to run that I get a buzz from: the wind in your hair, as you move yourself through the world. It’s also a good marker of general fitness that other people can understand, which is important to me.

In other news, all my t-shirts are suddenly too big for me. The weather here is barmy this weekend (25 celsius, which in the UK means we start complaining that it’s too hot) so I needed to buy some new shorts and tees. At the shop the clerk asked me what size t-shirt I was normally, to which I replied: “dunno”. It’s pretty cool to not have a normal size as it keeps changing. He gave me a 3XL and told me to come back and get a 2XL if it was too big. Sweet! He thinks a 3XL might be too big for me. I was keen to prove him right and came back for the 2XL which “sorta fitted”. I ended up buying both because I wasn’t sure, but I’ll be taking back the bigger one. (NB, pretty sure this is “big shop 2XL” but that’s still good news for me!)

The 2XL fits, but to me it “sorta fits” because I’m not used to clothes feeling this way; it feels “tight” and makes me uncomfortable because of how it hugs my body – I want a bigger shirt under which I can hide away. Incidentally the shorts were 46″, the 44″ definitely didn’t fit. Today I started wearing my 44″ rugby shorts for the run, they too “sorta fit”, but will feel more comfortable in a few more weeks. Good news that I can fit into off-the-shelf rugby kit though!

Treadmill Homicide

Ok, this is a bit embarrassing, but it’s a story that needs to be told :).

Last night I was all psyched up for W5D2 (2x 8 minute runs) and I hit the gym; it was packed with people, so I jumped on a treadmill in a different section than usual and started the run. I hit the 6-minute mark and things are fine, then all of a sudden the treadmill stops. A message scrolls across the screen, something about equipment failure and the machine being blocked. I start panicing: “Shit, is that burning electronics I can smell? Fuck, are people looking around at me?”. I press all the buttons trying to reset it but nadda.

Ugh, I have 2 minutes of running left! I hop onto another machine nearby and start running again. No one in the gym seems to care or notice. Phew. I penalise myself an extra +2 minutes running for the break, but after 3 minutes the same fucking thing happens on this machine. WTF! Same error message, different machine. Hell no, I’m outta here! I cut my workout short and leg it.

I’m not proud of that, but honestly there was no way I was going to go up to a member of staff and tell them I just busted two machines, in front of a full-house in the cardio room. Anyway, y’know, maybe it wasn’t me? Maybe it was two dodgy machines in “another area of the gym that I don’t use much”?

After work today I went back to redo W5D2. There were no “WANTED” posters and it was smiles all around from the reception staff – situation normal. I made sure I was earlier this time and picked my usual machine, my trusted-old-faithful. I start the run and get in the zone, I’m rocking this running thing! After 6 minutes, all of a sudden the treadmill stops and a familiar message appears‚Ķ


Hahahahahah. There’s really not much else I can do but laugh about this now. Seriously, same fucking message. I tried googling the error to see how bad it is but nothing came up. I also checked the manufacturer’s website, and the “maximum user weight” is like 400lb+, so I don’t really know what was going on except that I was a commonality. There’s a good chance I killed three treadmills this week, or at least wounded them.

The most annoying part of all this? It interrupted C25K! After the machine gave up today I hit the road and finished the running off outside. There a park/cemetery nearby that did the job. I finished the day off but it went more like 6min/4min/8min. The 20-minute run is now scheduled for Saturday but I’m a little disheartened by having to do it outside; on the treadmill I can fix the pace and my plan was to drop it down to 9kph from the start, but now I’m just going to have to wing it. I really want to do W5D3 :).

C25K w5d1

That wasn’t too bad. After each 5-minutes I was pretty wiped but I managed to keep 10kph pace throughout.

I’m looking forward to wednesday’s 8-minute runs, that’ll probably be the farthest I’ve run ever. That’s depressing, but does it mean I’m now the the fittest I’ve ever been? I’m 3-4 months away from the start of the new rugby season and hopefully my return to the game; if I keep losing and training as I have been then I’m excited to see what that will be like.

C25K Week 4 – done

Alright! I just finished C25k week 4.

Today’s run was, again, easier than the last (but not by much!). I kept 10kph pace until the last 4 minutes, dropping down to 9kph. At the end I was knackered. Bring on week 5 and the dreaded W5D3 :-). I’ve said this before, but I’m saying it again: I love being a fat guy and busting my ass at the gym; it’s probably all in my head but it feels like I’m giving out big “fuck you!” vibes to anyone who has ever judged me. RAWWWR!

In others news, waiting/watching for people’s reactions about my weight is now officially a hobby of mine. The first person to notice was a female friend at Christmas (I was glowing!) and since then it’s been fascinating to observe how people have reacted. Last week I had a “WOAAAAAH DUDE!” reaction from one male friend, yet just before that another male friend didn’t say anything at all (both having not seen me for the same period of time). One of my best mates played the “Have you been working out?” card a couple of months ago, yet another best-mate hasn’t mentioned it at all. I work in an office of ~12 men and today was the first time it came up in conversation, triggered by a female client of ours asking me “Something’s changed with you, what is it?”; I acted coyly, but a colleague took the chance to break his silence with “He’s lost weight!”; he would never have said that unprompted and actually remarked, “Since I’ve been working here he’s lost weight, but us being blokes we don’t talk about it”. It’s interesting. And fun :).

This is a little sad, but I’m actually thinking about the people who will get the full “before and after” effect. I would never change my social plans to avoid people, but I’m enjoying the “surprise!” moments. There’s maybe a couple of dozen people that I can think of where this might happen… they are a rare¬†commodity¬†to be¬†savoured!

Reckless Abandon

I need some virtual whooping, cheering and high-fives please: I just did W4D1! (run 3 mins → walk 90 seconds → run 5 mins → walk 2.5 mins → repeat.) Man, that was a workout :D.

The first run was easy stuff, but the 5-minute one was hard: I just finished it without slowing my pace on the treadmill (10kph). About halfway through the second 3-minute one I dropped the speed down to 9.5kph and then down to 9kph for the final 5 minutes. The brutal final 5 minutes :). I was exhausted before they even began, my legs were heavy and I thought about quitting there and then: “I can quit and just repeat W3, I’m sure lots of people do that, it’s acceptable”. From somewhere I conjured my inner PT: ¬†”Fuck that shit! I pity the fool who quits!“.

I’m so glad I pushed myself hard. I read a post by Tony last week and as I struggled on, I felt like the embodiment of his words: “I¬†am an unstoppable force in your world of excuses; an easier time will be had trying to move a mountain than to steer me off course. By the throat I take this challenge and straight through it I go with reckless abandon, I will see it through to the end.”