Journal

Fat to Fit: Week 37

July 26th – August 1st, 2021

I stayed on track last week, though only by doing the bare minimum required. I didn’t eat healthily, nor did I put much effort into exercising. I criticize myself for this and duly note that such an effort will not achieve my goals. I’m hoping that I can improve this week.

Body Stats:

Highest Lifetime Weight: ~225 lbs.
Goal Weight: 165 lbs.
Week’s Ending Weight: 182.4 lbs.

Body Fat: 32.6%
Muscle Mass: 117.2 lbs.

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Monday 26th

Workout and Movement:
Active Calories, Strength AF+: 153 Avg. HR: 131
Exercise Ring: 49/30
Move Ring: 637/600
Total steps: 5,246

After being rather lazy in my approach to exercise last week, I wanted to start this week on a better footing. I selected a 30-minute strength workout with Sam to kick things off. This everything-rock workout was all about the upper body, which seemed appropriate as I haven’t done anything for my upper body in a week! The structure was ten moves that you do individually before putting together. It made for a challenging third set!

My heart rate trace demonstrates how I was pushed during each set before recovering a few seconds. As always, I used my eight-pound weights for most moves, though I dropped to five pounds for fly moves. I am pleased with how hard I worked during this workout today. Sam is always great at getting the best out of me! Decent workout, and I wasn’t sore afterward either.


Nutrition:
Calorie Intake: 1,541/1526
Fat: 26%
Carbs: 56%
Protein: 18%

I started my food journey this week with a 250-calorie Clif bar. I got a variety pack, and today was the first time I tried the Blueberry Crisp flavor, which seemed breakfast-appropriate. I must say, it tasted fantastic, with the blueberry identifiable. Clif bars are bulky items, and I needed a solid 45-minutes with an entire cup of coffee to work my way through it.

I had a portion of Italian turkey stew without mashed potatoes – I didn’t have enough to pair with this last portion. As a substitute, I had a couple of Thomas mini bagels with my stew today. I found a few Soylent bars in my drawer at work (I keep thinking I have eaten them all and find more), and I reached for a two around lunchtime. I opted for salted caramel flavor, with each being 100 calories. I had these instead of a snack when I got home. It does make my lunch look rather substantial, coming in at 656 calories total.

Yesterday, I prepared a veggie burger sandwich. It was beyond delightful; therefore, it was all I wanted for dinner today. My sandwich consists of 2 slices of 8-grain bread, a piece of provolone cheese, dill pickles, and a Praeger’s California veggie burger as the critical component. It all comes together as a fantastic burst of flavor and texture. Not a bad meal for 435 calories. For dessert, I had a frozen fudge bar for 100 calories. I had space in the daily budget for a second bar as a late-night treat too.


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Tuesday 27th

Workout and Movement:
Active Calories, HIIT AF+: 165 Avg. HR: 150
Exercise Ring: 36/30
Move Ring: 736/600
Total steps: 6.963

Another workout today – which is already an improvement over last week! I went with Jamie-Ray to provide a 20-minute HIIT workout (I didn’t think I could handle a 30-minute HIIT after being laxidasical recently). I love Jamie-Ray, and my favorite HIIT workout thus far was his combat-inspired routine that I have done twice.

The format of this workout was unique. He taught me four moves that are repeated four times, except the order changes for each round. Move two becomes move one in the circuit, and three becomes two, and so on. My favorite exercise was when we could jump from side to side. My least favorite was when I had to lift my legs – this seemed impossible by round three. I also liked that there was a touch of strength training between the rounds too. I want muscle definition! My heart rate was nicely elevated for the entire workout, sitting around 160 BPM for over 15 minutes. It was hard work but well worth it.


After HIIT, I enjoyed a nice 10-minute cooldown with Jessica. With these workouts and my general movement, my rings were pleasantly closed long before bed.


Nutrition:
Calorie Intake: 1,455/1,526
Fat: 24%
Carbs: 49%
Protein: 27%

A Clif bar was the choice for breakfast again today. On this occasion, I selected the Sierra Trail Mix flavor from my box, which was 260 calories. Clif bars are hefty and calorie-dense. Therefore, I had no issues getting by through lunch without further substance.

A high-protein parfait from Stonyfield was the centerpiece of lunch today. I did go and buy more while they were still on sale! In addition to my parfait, I enjoyed what I usually have for breakfast – a Pure Protein chocolate peanut caramel bar for 190 calories.

I had the same thing for dinner today too. When something tastes this good, I can’t resist having it day after day. A veggie burger is an excellent low-calorie option to make a hot sandwich with. Will I have another veggie burger sandwich tomorrow? Probably.

As for snacks today, I had two slices of cinnamon raisin bread for 180 calories. After my workouts, I enjoyed a chocolate Pure Protein shake for 140 calories. Yes, I would like to build muscle!

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Wednesday 28th

Workout and Movement:
Active Calories, Indoor Walk: 90 Avg. HR: 118
Exercise Ring: 30/30
Move Ring: 731/600
Total steps: 9,063

I had a hectic and exhausting day at work today. Consequently, I racked up many move calories and a few exercise calories before I got home for the evening. Therefore, all I needed was a quick 15-minute walk to get the exercise ring completed to close my rings. There wasn’t anything impressive about the walk at all. I didn’t actively try to get my heart rate up with exaggerated movements. In a way, I felt that I took care of my move ring, which was crucial in keeping CICO working in my favor. Perhaps not the best mindset, but I am honest.


Nutrition:
Calorie Intake: 1,421/1,526
Fat: 31%
Carbs: 49%
Protein: 20%

For the third day in a row, I had a Clif bar for breakfast. Yes, I am working through my variety pack, and today I selected the peanut butter banana with dark chocolate flavor. It tasted like a piece of delicious banana bread, despite the texture being utterly different! Great start to the day for 260 calories.

My good friend at work is an excellent baker who likes to bake. I am grateful that I get to enjoy the fruits of her labor. Today she graced us all with banana bread; this time, she added chocolate chips to it! I estimate that piece of banana bread was 236 calories. I had a Pure protein bar for 190 calories to supplement my bread, bringing my lunch to 426 calories total.

Yes, for the fourth day in a row, I had a veggie burger sandwich for dinner. I prepared it as soon as I got home from work, so it was an early dinner. Consequently, I was hungry later in the evening and heated 4 Tandoori chicken samosas for 300 calories to complete my day.


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Thursday 29th

Workout and Movement:
Exercise Ring: 30/30
Move Ring: 762/600
Total steps: 9,749

I didn’t get a workout in today. I don’t have a good excuse, so I won’t bore you with a bad one. Before bed, I marched on the spot to close my rings and get those 30-minutes of exercise on the board. Despite smashing my 600 calorie move goal, I had to keep going to get those exercise minutes! I am pleased with almost hitting ten thousand steps as I always feel that’s a decent amount of movement in a day without a proper workout.

I did a few strength exercises that I didn’t track today. Mostly it was arm and chest work with shoulder presses, bicep curls, bent rows, and floor presses. I try to do a few reps each day to keep my muscle tone regardless of other exercises. I’d like to have some definition, and muscle always helps burn those pesky calories!


Nutrition:
Calorie Intake: 1,490/1,526
Fat: 27%
Carbs: 55%
Protein: 18%

Work was busy today, and I wasn’t able to stop and have a proper lunch. Therefore, I am classing the two bars that I ate today as breakfast and my food as soon as I got home as lunch. I started my day with another Clif bar – this time opting for the 260-calories white chocolate macadamia nut bar. A few hours later, I had a 190-calorie Pure Protein bar. In total, I consumed 450 calories in bar form during my workday.

After work, I heated four chicken and cheese pupusas – an item that I found while shopping at Whole Foods. Yes, they were on sale! They are amazing Latin comfort food that I had never experienced before. They are low-calorie too, as this rather large meal came to good 600 calories. I rounded off my late lunch with 90 calories of dark chocolate mint barkTHINS – a new item in my life. I usually shy away from dark chocolate, favoring the creamy silkiness of milk or white chocolate. However, I may finally be onto something. Dark chocolate has fewer calories, and due to its richness, you can’t eat much of it at once. I may have found a solution to my chocolate addiction that isn’t going cold turkey.

Due to my heavier lunch, I had a lighter dinner, or rather breakfast for dinner. I opted for a bowl of instant oatmeal (110 calories) with a 1/4 cup of raisins (60 calories). I prepare my oatmeal in the microwave, adding only water. To supplement my oatmeal, I had two slices of cinnamon raisin bread (180 calories).

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Friday 30th

Workout and Movement:
Active Calories, Indoor Walk: 200 Avg. HR: 102
Exercise Ring: 41/30
Move Ring: 719/600
Total steps: 9,367

Around 9 PM, I decided it was time to close my rings for the day. I got up and started walking and marching around my apartment, making sure to move sufficiently to get my heart rate up. I did this successfully, shown by my heart rate trace and my average BPM of over 100. I did indeed walk until I burned 200 active calories.

I like that Apple does active calories as well as cumulative calories. It’s vital to know how many extra calories I have burned in an exercise, rather than total. In a way, the total would give me a false sense of grandeur, inflating my perception of how many calories I had burned. I can’t do that by only looking at the active calorie number. Another great feature!


Nutrition:
Calorie Intake: 1,375/1,526
Fat: 21%
Carbs: 59%
Protein: 20%

Today’s Clif bar flavor was chocolate chip – a solid classic for 250 calories. I’ve enjoyed my variety pack this week, adding a touch of variety to the day.

I had a light lunch as I intend on eating a lot for dinner. To keep the hunger at bay, I enjoyed a 250 calorie parfait from Stonyfield, a staple lunch for me recently. If you had told me a year ago that a 250-calorie granola yogurt would satisfy me for lunch, I would have laughed at you.

After work, I headed to Wegmans, looking to get a few things for the weekend. I chose sushi and some Singapore noodles (left). Today I ate around 825 calories of sushi. I had some after arriving home and more later at night for dinner. I got one of their party pack platters, so I have some left for tomorrow too!

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Saturday31st

Workout and Movement:
Exercise Ring: 48/30
Move Ring: 653/600
Total steps: 8,021

Saturday’s tend to be relatively relaxed affairs for me, and this one was no different. I did a few bursts of activity to rack up my stats. My first bought was around 2 PM, getting half of my exercise minutes on the board. This came from a blend of marching, playing with my cats, and a bit of housework.

From around 6 PM onward, I was very much up and around, gradually gathering move calories and the remaining exercise minutes. This period included my daily workout with weights and using my Desk Cycle while I did some writing.

I earned my July badges today too. A perfect month for closing my move ring each day and my challenge badge for doing 23 workouts.


Nutrition:
Calorie Intake: 1,474/1,526
Fat: 26%
Carbs: 63%
Protein: 11%

I skipped breakfast today and went straight to lunch and my sushi and noodles from Wegmans. I had ten pieces of sushi for 350 calories. I then had a 518 calorie portion of Singapore noodles. The dish is essentially thin noodles with seasoning topped with chicken and shrimp. I was a little disappointed with how dry the noodles were. I’d been eying this dish for a couple of days and felt I should have made a better selection in the end.

Dinner was a low-maintenance affair, too – another serving of the dry Singapore noodles! I adore eating my dinner with chopsticks. It slows the eating process down, and that can only be a good thing.

I had another 90-calorie portion of dark chocolate mint barkTHINS today – and yep, I weighed it out! Pleased to have had such an indulgent day while staying within my daily food budget.

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Sunday 1st

Workout and Movement:
Active Calories, Indoor Walk: 410 Avg. HR: 116
Exercise Ring: 66/30
Move Ring: 670/600
Total steps: 4,757

After being a tad lazy this week, I thought it was about time for some cardio. I set my Desk Cycle to resistance five and took it for an hour’s spin while I watched some television. I like how quiet the Desk Cycle is, whereas I’d struggle to hear almost anything over my ailing spin bike. I checked my watch frequently to ensure that my heart rate didn’t drop; if I saw it dipping below 120 BPM, I’d increase my effort/cadence.

I must say, I worked harder than I felt my stats suggest. There was a fine glean of sweat over me, and quite a bit trickled down my back. Perhaps it was the length of the workout rather than the intensity that prevailed —regardless, pleased with this effort and a decent end to the week.


Nutrition:
Calorie Intake: 1,497/1,526
Fat: 27%
Carbs: 60%
Protein: 13%

I had a delightful breakfast today of two slices of cinnamon raisins toast with a medium banana. I liked to mash my banana into the toast, which is my favorite way to eat these two items. Good start to the day for 285 calories.

Lunch was another 518 calorie portion of Singapore noodles. I intended not to cook this weekend by buying the family-sized options, and I have achieved that. To avoid adding more calories, I mixed in water before heating the microwave to help dryness.

I ate my dinner in two phases: Phase one was four potato and pea samosas (220 calories) from Whole Foods. The second part was a form of grilled cheese. I had two slices of 8-grain bread and melted a slice of provolone cheese onto them. Delicious and filling snack for 380 calories. I probably should class it as a meal rather than a snack!

As for snacks, I continued with a serving of dark chocolate barkTHINS today – opting to have half a portion after lunch and the other half after dinner.

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Week’s Reflection

As with last week, I tend to set out with excellent intentions, doing a couple of workouts before reverting to on-the-spot marching to burn the required calories. Yes, I am lifting weights each day, but I don’t have the equipment to make that equivalent to a circuit at the gym.

Without the structure of strength, yoga, or HIIT workouts, I don’t think I am pushing my fitness as far as I can. There’s no doubt in that statement. I am not straining myself. The only time I’ve felt incredibly proud of my exercise efforts was in June, when I did an Apple Fitness workout every day. Perhaps, like most things in my life, I need that structure to get the most out of my body and mind.

I also stated last week that I needed to eat fewer processed foods, yet this week everything was processed (except for a few bananas). There isn’t much in the way of “fresh” in my diet. Especially now that I am not eating pre-prepared meals, my vegetable consumption has plummeted. On the plus side, I am staying in the CICO range each day, finding ways to control my chronic overeating. There would have been times when I’d have eaten all the sushi on that first day, and the noodles wouldn’t have survived until Sunday. It’s also true that there is ample room for improvement. I could have selected smaller portions and prepared a meal during my weekend. Finding Bark Thins, though, is valuable – it’s an excellent option to give my crippling sweet tooth what it needs.

Despite my nutritional choices, I am feeling good and sleeping well.


Upcoming Week

Potential Roadblocks

A typical week ahead, so an excellent opportunity to keep me on track.

Desires

I want the same for next week as I wanted for this one: more exercise and better nutrition. I, too often, make decisions that go against me. For example, why did I decide I wasn’t going to cook all weekend? I might be lazy, but I could have chosen a salad instead of noodles even with that remit.

Do better. Be healthier. Live Longer.

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Cat Corner

Just a little selfie with my boy. 😍ᓚᘏᗢ


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