July 19th – July 25th, 2021
My workouts last week were a good mix of strength, cardio, and yoga. As the week ended, I did get a bit lazy, opting for some indoor walks to meet my move and exercise ring goals. Such decisions are not ones I have a good excuse for. I am not an especially busy person outside of work.; my reasons are pure apathy and mental determination to sit as much as possible. Not a great mindset! As for my nutrition – yes, it could be better. It can always be better. However, I am eating well within the Lose It! budget, so I am at a loss to explain why my weight is stagnant. CICO is based on a simple equation: burn more than you ingest. Based on my calorie intake, I theoretically should be losing 1.5 lbs. a week. That hasn’t happened once in nearly nine months. Therefore either my tracking isn’t accurate, or my BMR is wrong.
I’ll stick to the current plan for this week and try to move my body enough to feel fit and strong. The number on the scale isn’t vital to me, and my mindset has shifted to feeling good and healthy.
Highest Lifetime Weight: ~225lbs.
Goal Weight: 165 lbs.
Week’s Ending Weight: 182.4 lbs.
Body Fat: 32.8%
Muscle Mass: 117.2 lbs.
Workout and Movement:
Active Calories, Strength AF+: 200 Avg. HR: 125
Exercise Ring: 52/30
Move Ring: 730/650
Total steps: 7,228
I started my week with some strength training with Sam. I was looking for a 30-minute workout, and when I saw the playlist, I was sold! I love Sam; she always gets the most out of every rep. Between the work with weights, she incorporated push-ups, which is something I need to work on. I still can’t do more than five proper push-ups in a row.
From my heart rate trace, it is apparent that I was worked hard during this session. I am using my 8lbs. for the heavier weights as that’s the max I currently own. I sometimes know I could do a higher weight, and I am looking for a good deal on adjustable dumbbells to fill that void.
After my strength training, I didn’t do a mindful cooldown, opting for some personal stretches and then using my deep tissue massage gun to help my body recover.
Calorie Intake: 1,512/1,556
A typical breakfast starts the week with a 190-calorie chocolate peanut caramel Pure Protein bar and a medium banana. I felt utterly satisfied with these 295 calories to kick off my day.
For lunch, I had a high protein parfait from Stonyfield – a deceptively filling 250 calories. To accompany my yogurt, I had a small banana for 90 calories.
I had the remainder of the frozen four-cheese thin crust pizza that I prepared yesterday for dinner, adding 247 calories to my day. However, this was not enough to satiate me. Therefore, I had four Tandoori chicken samosas for 300 calories to complete my dinner.
After work, I treated myself to a chocolate-covered ice cream bar (Whole Foods) for 230 calories.
Workout and Movement:
Active Calories, Indoor Walk: 207 Avg. HR: 74
Exercise Ring: 35/30
Move Ring: 716/650
Total steps: 9,255
The indoor walk that I performed today was a last-minute ditch effort. I am rarely awake at 11 PM, never mind pushing to close my Apple Watch rings! There is nothing impressive about this indoor march (walking on the spot). My heart rate didn’t elevate, and the watch didn’t collect the data correctly. Nonetheless, at least I forwent going to bed until the rings were closed; that’s a tick in the attitude column.
An active workday got the move ring closed. I constantly was walking to and from the lab. Without that effort, it would have been a struggle to close those rings.
Calorie Intake: 1,439/1,556
I had the same breakfast today as yesterday: a Pure Protein bar and a medium banana, totaling 295 calories.
I had the same lunch too! I am quite the creature of habit. In my defense, these parfaits with the yogurt, compote, and granola are delicious. It takes me a while to eat too. With the banana, it’s a great 340 calorie lunch.
I made a delightful sandwich for dinner tonight. Between 2 pieces of 8-grain bread (220 calories), I placed three slices of smoked turkey (45 calories), half a small avocado (114 calories), and some dill pickle slices (5 calories). My sandwich tasted fantastic, and I found it incredibly filling.
I had a couple of snacks today. The first was 1 ½ cups of strawberries with Lowfat vanilla yogurt for 190 calories total. The second was a chocolate-covered ice cream bar for 230 calories.
Workout and Movement:
Exercise Ring: 39/30
Move Ring: 681/650
Total steps: 10,554
I didn’t do an official workout today in the sense that I didn’t track my late-night marching to close my rings. In essence, my day was almost a carbon copy of yesterday – with racking up steps throughout the day and then marching right before bed to close my rings.
I’ve said it many times before, but my Apple Watch has been one of the most positive purchases of my life. Unlike my Fitbit, where there are no streaks (or there weren’t when I was a user), the Apple system incentives closing the rings. With Fitbit, it didn’t matter really; you didn’t get another badge that day. With Apple, I am mounting a challenge to beat my longest streak. Thus, I am up and marching right before bed. These movements add up over a week, month, year. It can only be a positive effect on my overall health.
Calorie Intake: 1,491/1,556
There was a bit of variation with today’s breakfast – I paired my medium banana with a couple of Nutri-Grain bars. My go-to flavors are apple and cinnamon, and strawberry. I’m less inclined toward the blueberry, despite loving blueberries! Not a bad start to the day for 365 calories.
Lunch had a familiar theme to it. I enjoyed another 250-calorie high protein parfait (left) with a small banana. I got home early enough from work that I considered the two slices of cinnamon raisin bread (180 calories) as part of lunch too. In total, my lunch came to 520 calories.
For dinner, I reached into my freezer and selected the meal of Italian turkey stew with 1 1/2 cups of mashed potatoes. I love quickly microwaving my dinner during the week while knowing it’s good food that I prepared myself. I felt full and satisfied with 376 calories.
With room in the budget, I had another chocolate-covered ice cream today for 230 calories. I adore ice cream and chocolate, and eating a bar like this helps control the portion size.
Workout and Movement:
Exercise Ring: 41/30
Move Ring: 745/650
Total steps: 8,961
Another day without loading the Apple Fitness app for a workout. However, my daily stats are excellent – right where I’d like them to be. Amassing 745 move calories without doing an activity proves how much I move during a standard workday, with some effort to move when I get home. On average, I acquire 350-400 move calories during my shift, leaving a decent amount for me to do at night. I purposefully set my goals this way, so I do not become stagnant at night.
Today I closed my rings with a lot of walking around my apartment and during a bit of house cleaning.
Calorie Intake: 1,356/1,556
Back to my standard breakfast today, with a 190-calorie Pure Protein bar. I eat this at my desk with a cup of coffee, savoring it over a 10-15 minute period. I find that’s the best way for my body to accept 20 grams of protein first thing in the morning. If I eat it too fast, sometimes it can feel far too heavy in my stomach.
For lunch, I stuck to my go-to at the moment: a 250-calories parfait from Stonyfield with a small banana. I don’t eat these together but rather split this small meal into two sittings. Usually, I pop back into the lab between them, so I think about science and not food. It’s a light lunch, but it’s enough to get me home when I usually have a post-work snack. In essence, I have four meals a day, which I think is a healthier way to eat. It might be anecdotal, but smaller meals make me far less sleepy after eating!
Today’s snacks were unhealthy — first, a 230 calories chocolate-covered ice cream bar and then 3 Twizzlers for 120 calories. When writing out these choices, it makes me regret having such things in the house. After all, if they weren’t here, I wouldn’t reach for them when I’m a bit bored or hungry.
Workout and Movement:
Active Calories, Indoor Walk: 419 Avg. HR: 108
Exercise Ring: 74/30
Move Ring: 951/650
Total steps: 12,576
After a few days of not doing much to increase my heart rate (though still burning calories), I wanted to do a little more on this Friday night. Therefore, I did an hour-long indoor march, ensuring I moved my arms and legs enough to get my heart rate elevated. To achieve this, I punch the air or swing my arms with vigor. As for my legs, I lift my knees a bit higher than required to get the steps. I am pleased that my data shows an average heart rate around the 110 BPM mark. That’s in an excellent range to burn some fat. Minimally, I know I put in enough effort to burn a few calories – through 419 move calories does seem a tad high. Regardless, walking 12.5K steps in a day is a decent yield.
Calorie Intake: 1,511/1,556
I kicked off the day with my go-to: a chocolate peanut caramel Pure Protein bar for 190 calories. In the past few weeks, this has been enough for me, whereas previously, I needed a Nutri-Grain bar mid-morning as well.
To work, I took only my 250-calories parfait for lunch. I try to get out of work early on Fridays, so my team and I can get a little head start on the weekend. As a result, I had a second lunch when I got home. Nothing like Italian turkey stew and mashed potatoes. Do you think that’s all I had prepared in my freezer? You’re not wrong. In the end, it was a big lunch, coming in at 626 calories.
I heated a chicken barbecue thin crust pizza for dinner and enjoyed half of it for 475 calories. I seem to eat a lot of pizza – which is down to my love of it, how fast and easy it is to prepare, and the fact that I’ve found one that doesn’t kill my health every time I eat it.
There was room for a couple of snacks today too. A cute 120-calorie box of Frosted Flakes was a delightful snack. I adore dry cereal to munch on as you get a lot of texture and flavor when eating it this way. I also enjoyed a 100-calorie frozen fudge bar to round off my day.
Workout and Movement:
Exercise Ring: 60/30
Move Ring: 710/650
Total steps: 8,288
No formal workout today. In all honesty, I was feeling sluggish and spent a lot of time sitting today. It wasn’t until later in the evening that I started to work on my rings. I made a little circuit for myself in my apartment and played with my cats. In fairness, their acrobats for the laser probably gave them more exercise than me!
I didn’t track the movement tonight – it wasn’t structured enough for that. Overall though, I know my heart rate was somewhat elevated to get my move ring closed. Amassing over eight thousand steps without leaving the house demonstrates a fair amount of movement. However, we all know that I could have done better.
Calorie Intake: 1,456/1,556
With the weekend comes some variety. Breakfast was a couple of toasted slices of cinnamon raisin bread, into which I mashed a medium banana. The convergence of flavors in this meal delights me. Better yet, it was filling and had some nutritional value.
Nutrition wasn’t at the forefront of motivation for lunch. I enjoyed the other half of the chicken barbecue pizza (475 calories) with a 100-calorie fudge bar for dessert. Perhaps not the lunch of champions, but it tasted great.
Dinner was another portion of Italian turkey stew with mashed potatoes, with a fudge bar for dessert. These might be the way forward instead of the chocolate-covered ice creams. They are lower in calories, so they have less impact on my day. They leave more room for more filling and nutritionally valued foods.
At night, I noticed some calories remaining, so I enjoyed three Twizzlers while watching a movie, adding 120 calories to my day.
Workout and Movement:
Active Calories, Indoor Walk: 367 Avg. HR: 93
Exercise Ring: 49/30
Move Ring: 735/650
Total steps: 8,556
It’s clear that I wasn’t motivated to work out this week, as I did another indoor walk to finish it off. Once again, it was later in the day, almost like I was forcing myself to get those rings closed. As usual, I made sure I added as much movement to my on-the-spot marching as I could to get my heart rate elevated. I’ve noticed that marching naturally barely gets my heart rate above 90, so I have to give it a bit of effort, or it’s not doing much for me in terms of exercise.
My stats are very similar to yesterday’s, getting just over 8.5K steps in a day without leaving the apartment.
Calorie Intake: 1,426/1,556
I enjoyed my toast and banana breakfast so much yesterday; I had to repeat it today! I don’t know why I like a mashed banana on toast so much, but I always have. I don’t care for plain toast at all, and a banana is something I can do without. However, mashed banana into toast is the bomb.
Lunch will be unsurprising to you. I had another serving of Italian turkey stew with mashed potatoes. I make a lot of this dish; usually, a double batch, and I mash a five lb. bag of potatoes at a time. As I live alone, there’s a lot of portions for me to eat! I had a 100-calorie fudge bar as dessert.
For dinner, I made a fantastic veggie burger sandwich. I took two slices of 8-grain bread (220 calories) and lightly toasted them. I popped a Dr. Praeger’s California veggie burger (130 calories) in the microwave for 90-seconds (I’ve found this is a perfect time, do not piece the little bag it comes in). I then put my burger on one piece of slightly toasted bread and popped a slice of provolone cheese (80 calories) on top, and popped it back in the toaster oven to melt slightly. On the other piece, I add dill pickles (5 calories). When satisfied with the cheese melting progress, I remove and smash the two halves together. What an outstanding sandwich for 435 calories.
There was sufficient room in the budget for a chocolate-covered ice cream bar for 230 calories.
Writing out my meals this week has highlighted something – I am staying within my calorie budget, but I am not doing it with nutrition in mind. I use convenience to the max. I am aware that CICO is all about math, that as long as I run a calorie deficit, I should lose weight. If this year has taught me anything, it’s that it’s not quite the case for me. I’m not saying that I am unique, just that CICO alone has taken me as far as it can, and down 40 lbs. is nothing to scoff at. I need to evaluate how to use CICO in conjunction with increasing the nutritional value of the food.
I am doing relatively well when doing a little more cooking and not reaching for pizza and ice cream. I have read that the calorie count on processed foods can be up to 20% off, which alone could account for the lack of weight drop. I will attest to, though, that by counting calories, I am not eating as much. For example, I ate the pizza over two days instead of in one sitting like I may have done in the past. It’s something for me to think about as I head toward the home stretch of this Fat to Fit year.
Frankly, I was rather lazy this week. I closed my rings but in a manner that involved the least amount of work possible. I started okay with a 30-minute strength workout and then degenerated to my indoor marching to close my rings. While I did burn calories, I didn’t do much tone, shape, or improve my physique. If I am not paying that much attention to nutrition, I need to put some effort in on the other side of the equation. I didn’t do that this week.
Am I too harsh on myself? I don’t think so. I’m deep into this journey now, a journey where I am almost where I started. Every week I analyze and talk about how I can improve, but then I don’t. I need to work on discipline, motivation, and focusing on what is essential.
Nothing remarkable is occurring in this upcoming week. Nothing extraordinary is happening in this upcoming week. It should be full-steam ahead.
I want to eat with a little more nutrition in mind. I am eating far too many pizzas, ice creams, and samosas. It doesn’t sound like the diet of a fitness champion. The point of this year was to get my body in the best shape I could to set myself up for the second half of my life. Maybe I can throw a salad in there?
I was pretty lazy with my workouts this week too. As I have completed a month of Apple Fitness+ workouts, I know I can exercise each day. I’m a lazy sod who needs to get their s**t together.
Am I at my most content when one of my fur babies decides to come to sleep with me. Raven is the best a snuggling in this way. She is beyond precious and my heart is melting looking at this photo. What an angel. 😇ᓚᘏᗢ
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