January 26, 2010

Am I done?! Really?! Yikes. :-o

My initial goal has been 150 lbs or 25% body fat, whichever came first.

My Tanita scale has been indicating anywhere from 22% to 26% body fat for the past week or so.

I suspected I was close, but wouldn’t know until I had it measured by a more accurate method.

While in CA on January 15 through a DXA scan I found out my body fat is actually 19%.
Are you freaking KIDDING me?! That’s actually in the “athletic” category.  Specifically Nordic skiers, bicyclists, and swimmers.  Gee, what a coincidence, LOL

However, last year at this time I still weighed around 300 lbs, so it’s a lot to mentally adjust to.

Apparently what’s going on is that my BONES are uber-dense.  As in over 3 standard deviations denser than normal.  The T-score is 3.5, the Z-score is 3.2, if you’re into that sort of thing.  This doesn’t mean I have *big* bones – I’m still small-framed by all the measures I’ve tried.  It just means that my tiny little bones are the osteo equivalent of titanium, or something.  Which actually bodes well for the future, because they lose density, I’ll eventually end up at “normal” while everyone is fracturing their hips at 80…

So my dense little bones are tricking my scale into thinking I’ve got more fat than I do.  Because the scale is using average values for my age and gender, etc. to estimate body fat.

This body fat percent means, technically, that by at least one measure I am done. I have been processing this information for the past couple of days – I actually cried a little in the car on the way back on Thursday, because I was just so overwhelmed. I wasn’t expecting this. I wasn’t really ready for it.

I have been lightening up on the calorie restriction but continuing with the heavy exercising, with predictable results. This morning I’m up to 158. So I’ll be pushing back down on the restriction a little more.

In the meantime, realizing that I’m probably going to be close to this size for a while, and having my two sisters handy, I indulged in SHOPPING. Me. Who has historically H.A.T.E.D. shopping. With a Passion.

In the interests of public service, here is a rundown of the thrift and consignment stores my sisters and I investigated:

1) American Cancer Society Discovery Store, Rancho Bernardo
16787 Bernardo Center Drive, San Diego – (858) 385-0479

Small store, Salvation Army-type prices & selection. Found the sparkly $18 blue velour dress on sale in the above pic for half off.

2) Girlfriend’s Consignment Boutique, Poway
12222 Poway Road, Poway, CA – (858) 679-1222

Upscale. Lovely selection. Found a really nice workout top and leather pants ($26).

3) Plato’s Closet, Escondido
1220 Auto Park Way, Escondido, CA – (760) 233-0002

Geared toward 20 year olds. Found some really nice workout gear there. Lots of colors and styles and the ability to be picky.

4) Deborah’s Next to New, Escondido
1624 E Valley Pkwy, Escondido, CA – (760) 743-8980

Large selection. Similar items scattered throughout the store. Quality ranges from Salvation Army to upscale. Found an awesome lined suede long skirt there for $29.

I had to get a box to ship all this stuff home…


December 23, 2009

New BMI = 24.97

Filed under: health,sports,technology — origamifreak @ 8:57 am
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Do you see that?!  Do you see the number up there????

Did you NOTICE?!  It’s UNDER 25!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I’m at a “healthy” BMI!  Woo-hoo!

And Amazon says they can get me my SwiMP3 player TOMORROW.  In time for Christmas!!!  In time to USE it on Saturday!!!

Happy little “normal” BMI dance…

P.S.  The other milestone I hit this morning is that my weight is now under 160.  Yay.  But not as exciting as my SHINY NEW BMI!

P.P.S.  I was so excited about getting my BMI under 25 that I forgot to mention the next milestone coming up:  in 3.8 lbs I will have removed 180 total…

December 21, 2009

New BMI = 25.06

Filed under: health,technology — origamifreak @ 9:08 am
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OK, as of this morning I’ve lost 175 lbs.

In one half of a pound (0.5 lbs) I will be at a “healthy” BMI under 25…

And in one tenth of a pound (0.1 lbs) my weight will go under 160.

In the past week I’ve seen that SwiMP3 player on Amazon go from $135 to $119 to $115 and last night it’s back up to $135.  😐

Grr.  Oh well.  The BMI is more important.  If I can get rid of just half a pound more, it’ll be a Very Merry Christmas, indeed!

November 26, 2009

New BMI = 26.56

Filed under: health — origamifreak @ 5:58 am
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Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

I hit a nice milestone this morning.  I am now under 170!  Woo-hoo!

And the VERY NEXT milestone will be VERY VERY COOL.  The next milestone (in 1.8 lbs) will be the point at which I have removed 50% – that’s FIFTY PERCENT of my starting weight.

I will quite literally be half the woman I was.

But this current milestone is pretty cool in its own right, because I remember being in the 160s in college.  Not  HAPPY about being in the 160s (It seemed too high and it was), but I looked and felt pretty good.  Especially compared with how I’ve looked and felt for the past 15 years…  😯

When I started this “BMI Chasing” project back in May of 2007 I would have been ecstatic just to get under 200 and stay there.  Or even 300 and stay there.  I don’t think I ever really believed I’d actually be at a weight range I recalled from college, or a stone’s throw from a “normal” BMI of 24.99  (which is exactly 10.1 lbs away from where I am now, and completely do-able).

When I hit that 50% mark I will paste my original BMI Chasing post in with it, just so I (and anyone else interested) can see how far I’ve come…

And baby, I sure have come a long long way!

November 23, 2009

New BMI = 26.72, “Your RealAge is 38.6!” and the ugly fact about perception of obesity

Today, on my 44th birthday, I reached another milestone.  165 lbs off.

The next milestones coming up are pretty cool:

  • in 0.7 lbs I will drop into the 160s.  Which is where I was in COLLEGE.  (And briefly in grad school after I lost 100+ lbs the first time.)
  • in 2.8 lbs I will literally be HALF the woman I once was, by weight.
  • in 11.1 lbs I will be out of “overweight” and into “normal” according to BMI.  I’m not sure I EVER really believed I might get there.  😯 Hoped, yes.  Believed?  I dunno.  But now I’m sure I can.

DDOORN on Spark People has an amusing tradition. Each year on his birthday he goes to to calculate how much YOUNGER he’s getting, biologically, due to the improvements he’s made in his health and fitness.

This is a fun idea, and I’ve adopted it this year.

I went there and filled out the information for approximately what I did, ate, and weighed last year (around 330) and got the answer that I was 46.1 (3 years older than my calendar age). I can tell you, I FELT a lot older than that. I was already having trouble with my arthritic knee going up and down the stairs in my house and was starting to wonder how I was going to cope as I aged further.

Things happened (you can see my Spark Page for details) and I started losing weight again in early December. I had lost 40 lbs by the time I was introduced to SparkPeople in March.

Now, 160 lbs lighter than my maximum recorded weight and approximately 150 lbs lighter than last year, my supposed biological age is 38 and a half. It feels like less than that – I haven’t felt this healthy or strong since I was in my 20s. Of course, I don’t actually KNOW what it feels like to be biologically 38, because I was over 300 lbs for approximately the last 15 years…

Some other thoughts about the changes since my last birthday, some of which may be uncomfortable to read:

While talking with Lisa on the phone this morning we discussed how the world is different for me now. One of the things that came up is how it felt to be super morbidly obese and how people treat others who are obese.

I felt kind-of cushioned and “safe” in my “fat suit.” My parents were very strict and physical disciplinarians. As a child I never considered myself to be “abused,” as there was always a “reason” for hitting me – with the metal end of the belt, with a heavy hairbrush, etc.

One incident that sticks out in my mind is the day around 8 years old when I went to school in shorts and a classmate asked why there were giant, father-sized handprint-shaped welts on my thighs. I explained that I’d done something I wasn’t supposed to the previous evening, and had been spanked. She was horrified and offered to tell her parents for me (her father was on the city council). I declined, and after that wore long pants to school. Looking back on it, this strikes me as the behavior of a child who might be experiencing a degree of physical abuse.

My mom wasn’t the most nurturing person in the world, either. She was extremely tightly wound, insecure, and unhappy as a homemaker. Just about the only time I felt loved and accepted was when I was being fed. I came home for lunch in elementary school. She’d make me lunch and we’d watch Split Second and Password on TV, shouting suggestions to the contestants. I remember when I was 8 or so one of my favorite lunches was Kraft macaroni and cheese. I could have as much as I wanted. It was common for me to eat THE ENTIRE POT. I still love boxed macaroni and cheese, and for this reason studiously avoid it.

Don’t get me wrong – you could do a lot worse for parents; they pushed me to excel in school, provided more than adequate food, shelter, and clothing, taught me how to read at 4, bought a 1972 World Book encyclopedia and put it in my bedroom, brought me on trips (Boston in 1970, San Diego in 1975, all around the US in 1976, England in 1977), taught me how to garden and fish, encouraged me in music and scouting, brought me camping every summer, etc. They were just from a different generation where kids were brought up strictly and a fat baby was a healthy baby (he was born in 1910; she, in 1921).

Anyhow, the result was that I associated food (quantity rather than quality) with emotional comfort and felt the need to protect myself physically from the world.

Fast forward to a year ago. Although I was physically uncomfortable, the fat suit made me feel safe. There was a physical buffer between myself and the rest of the world. And it also helped keep away people who didn’t genuinely like me for my mind and my personality.

What I didn’t factor in is that the fat suit also attracted people who saw me (rightfully) as emotionally vulnerable and used that information to get things from me by stroking my ego. I didn’t factor in the fact that the fat suit, while acting as a physical buffer, also weighed me down and made me slower and weaker physically.

And here’s the part that may be uncomfortable to read. Wearing a fat suit was blatant advertising that something was wrong with me, mentally and/or emotionally. It’s not just that it made me physically less able. It broadcast to the world that I had serious problems that were interfering with taking care of myself.

I am not talking about the fat that constitutes “overweight,” or even necessarily “obese.” These conditions are the new “normal” in the US, and can sometimes be caused by medical problems. But when you get into “morbid obesity” and “super morbid obesity” (which is where I was a year ago), it’s like wearing a big sign that says “I’m a mess. I may be high-functioning and in denial about it, but scratch below that veneer, and you’ll find a messy unresolved issue.”

This is the ugly fact that Lisa pointed out, and I have to say I agree with her. No wonder people often give other Very Large People a wide berth. It isn’t necessarily right or fair or kind, but it does make sense.

150 lbs of fat less, and “8” biological years younger, where does that leave me now? I still have a bunch of the issues that I had a year ago. With years of counseling and drugs they haven’t disappeared; losing over 100 lbs isn’t going to make them go away fast, either. But at least I’m no longer advertising them to the world or letting them get in the way of taking care of myself physically. And that’s something.

If I have to be vulnerable (and it seems that I do, since that’s basically the human condition) I might as well be in good physical shape to face it.

November 3, 2009

New BMI = 27.91

Filed under: health — origamifreak @ 8:38 am
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My BMI is now under 28.  When it gets under 25 I will no longer be “overweight.”

Next milestone in 2.6 lbs when I’ll have removed 160 lbs total.

October 31, 2009

New BMI = 28.29

As of this morning I have removed 155 lbs.  30 more to go, total.  I have now removed MORE weight than I plan on actually BEING when I’m done.

0.7 to go before I get into the 170s.

Gotta scoot – have arranged for my friend Linda to record me rolling in the lake a few times, then zoom back home to drop off the boat, then zoom up to Geneva and guest-teach a water aerobics class at the Y, then zoom home and change and go on a white deer tour with Linda and our neighbor Mary Anne, then zoom home and hand out pencils and erasers and stickers and other Halloween-appropriate non-edibles…

Stay tuned for the rolling video!


October 14, 2009

New BMI = 28.76

Filed under: health — origamifreak @ 8:01 am
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Well, I got to the next milestone.  I’ve lost 45% of my starting weight.

Next milestone in 1.6 lbs when I’ll have removed 110 since joining SparkPeople in March.

The next milestone after that in 2.3 lbs when I’ll have removed another 5% net, and I can order two more BUFFs, (for the last two 5% net intervals).  I’ve already picked out the patterns I want (Boscatge and Harbour ) – hope they don’t sell out before I get there!   My projection is that I’ll get there on Nov 3.  We’ll see.

After that I’ll have 3 more 5% net intervals to go before I hit goal weight.  I’ve done 11 of them so far.

September 16, 2009

New BMI = 31.2

Filed under: food,health — origamifreak @ 7:32 am
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Two milestones today:

  • I’m under 200 lbs for the first time in I don’t know how long, but it’s got to be at least 15 years.
  • I’ve removed 135 lbs

Next milestone in 1.3 lbs when my BMI will drop below 31.  When it drops below 30, I’ll no longer be obese, just overweight.  Yay!  Considering I started in “super morbidly obese,”  I think this is pretty amazing.

Cousin Nick and changed the terms of the contest – it’s not whomever gets under 200 first on a single day, but whomever can stay under 200 for an entire week.  So, if I can just hang on and keep it under 200 for 6 more days, I’ll WIN.  HA.  Nick, if you’re reading this, I like seafood.  Specifically SHRIMP.  hehe.

July 23, 2009

New BMI = 35.02

Filed under: health — origamifreak @ 12:47 pm
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I have now removed one third of my starting body weight (33.33%)

Next milestone in 0.2 lbs when I’ll move into Class I Obesity.  The next category lower than Class I Obesity is “Overweight.”  I can’t wait until I’m no longer “obese.”

In one more full pound I will have removed another 5% net.  The projection is that will happen around July 27.  I wonder if I will get there on time?  I think I can lose a pound in four days…  Or sooner.

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