Reality (TV) Check

Week 3
Day 15 July 23rd 2012- Day 22 July 29th 2012

I wrote an entry about getting fit, not numbered. I stressed the importance of not galvanizing the scale.  To place the obsession on being healthy, not the number on the scale.  I still believe this.  But, I have to admit, knowing I worked hard exercising and eating right, I’m actually excited for the “weigh ins”. I don’t want to seem like a hypocrite. I’m not looking to lose a specific amount of weight, or reach a goal loss at the end of each week. I just want to be aware of my progress.  Plus, it’s liberating.  I used to hate getting on the scale. I can’t recall a time when I was happy, elated even, to hop on the scale.  But, now I am.

The start of my third diet week, I was minus an additional 3.5 pounds.  This is where I want to talk about numbers again. Before, many many times before, I dieted and dieted to no avail. In retrospect that’s not exactly true though. I always thought a plus size person should be able to produce those BIG numbers.So when I saw the weight was the same or only minus .5 pounds or a pound I thought my diet had failed. I thought since we have so much more weight, more can fall off and then our weight can be like a ticker counting down.  Why? Well because I’m one of those people that watch all the fat shows. You know the fat shows, “Heavy”, “The Biggest Loser” , “15 and Obese” ….hell even shows like “Ruby” and “I Used to Be Fat”.  We watch those reality shows and see each week the contestants get on the scale and their minus pounds are double digit numbers.  Yes, it can be achieved, but that’s not real life.

Lets put it in perspective, the contestants are working on the show for 3-6 months depending on the show, paid for doctor advice and nutritionist diet advice with diet plans and gym memberships with personal trainers paid for. Depending on the show, they usually are away at a camp and work out 6-8 hours a day sometimes more. Working out that much on a real low calorie restricted diet with almost no opportunities to cheat…of course that accelerates the process a bit.  What most people fail to realized, to lose weight the major factor is burning more calories than you consume. I again reference Jillian Michaels ( she is a trainer on The Biggest Loser but also a trainer with her own work out line). She is always posting blogs and facebook articles about this reference.  From her findings one pound equates to 3,500 calories. So to burn one pound you need to burn that amount of calories AFTER you burn the excess calories you consumed after your BMR requirement.  Your BMR is the calories your body needs to self-sustain itself.  I don’t have the fancy gadgets and I don’t trust my math so my numbers in calculating my BMR is probably off, so I suggest you go and research it yourself.  Just making a point, most exercises don’t burn as many calories as you think. For instance, I’ve been doing four miles at the park with the assumption I’m working hundreds and hundreds of calories. Well, according to my fitness guru and google, I’m not.  Doing that power walk is anywhere around 300 calories burned.  So to find time and work outs to rack up the amount of calories you need to burn isn’t an easy task.  But, it can be done… in real time which is slow and steady. Cumulatively you can burn enough to drop a pound or two a week, sometimes more….but  if you’re looking to drop consistently 10+ pounds a week like the TV shows… yeah that’s going to take a a lot of work and dedication. Not saying it can’t be done, just saying check your expectations.

Plus, you have to be aware of the first few weeks are easier in seeing results. Change in diet, change in activity and even biological aspects like loss of water weight are all happening which contribute greatly to pound shedding. Keep in mind, there will be a point when that isn’t enough, you will plateau.

I’m not an expert. I’m just saying. Life isn’t TV. Don’t hold yourself to the same standards.

My standards for my third week were pretty low. My knee was acting up.  So I strolled in the park when I could. I used the bike the other days, some days it was a real light workout. But, I tried to stay focused on the diet. Didn’t cheat or break it and stayed real strict. I knew I was lacking in exercise so I stayed focused on eating right. I felt like a rabbit, eating lots of lettuce. But, it evened out. You have to find a balance and you have to come to terms with the results of that. In my mind, some sort of work out was better than nothing. And it is in the grander scheme of things.  Like I said, it’s about getting fit and healthy. Activity no matter how small is always a better choice. It’s all about the standards of what you want your daily, real-time life to produce.  Conduct yourself in a way that reaps better rewards.  The overall change will add up and ultimately help you meet the ends you seeks.  If we can have standards in the social lifestyle ( the class and privilege we want )  and in a potential mate in which to date, why can’t we have standards in our health? Don’t let your standards be televised. Step into the real world and invest into yourself.

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