Getting fit, again

Those that have followed this site for years might remember that in 2000, I decided to lose weight. I lost 49 pounds in about 6 months. Unfortunately, starting with the move to San Francisco in 2001, I gained the weight back, and as of July 2005 I was 20 pounds heavier than where I started. From July 2005 to July 2006 my weight was steady.

At a July doctor's visit, my doctor and I planned a physical. I had it on August 18th. Obviously, the result was going to be the doctor giving me the riot act about committing to losing weight and living a healthy lifestyle. So, I, um, lived it up while I could, and gained 7 pounds between visits. (Oops, doh, etc)

The riot act was delivered as expected, but I was prepared and had already decided weeks before that I would make the lifestyle change immediately following the physical.

Since then I've been eating a low-carb, low-fat, low-cholesterol, low-sodium, high-protein, fruit-and-vegetable-rich diet, and have been exercising. I'm going to the gym at UVic at least 2 times a week now (it was supposed to be Monday, Wednesday, Friday at 1pm but then I enrolled in a class that is Monday and Thursday, 1:00-2:30), looking to bump that up to 3 times as soon as possible, and eventually 4 times.

I've lost about 11 pounds so far, in just over 3 and a half weeks. In 2000, I lost 26 pounds in the first 5 weeks of my diet, but then I was exercising significantly more, was more generally fit when I started, wasn't nearly as busy, and was extreme with my diet. I'm being more moderate this time, I think moderation is the key to long term success.

I'm tracking my progress in a spreadsheet. I'm using Google's spreadsheet service, which so far seems extremely good. The user interface is extremely intuitive for anyone with spreadsheet experience, and it's possible to share with everyone or a select group of people. The only thing missing that would be nice for my file is a chart of the data, but it exports to Excel, so it's very easy to use Excel's chart wizard when I want to see one.

You can view the spreadsheet now or any time you want to see how I'm doing. I'll update the spreadsheet at least once a week. Once I've lost 100 pounds (45.36kg), I'll set a goal for where I want to be/stay, weight-wise. I know my frame can stand to lose at least 100 pounds so I'm going to use that as my first milestone. Once I get there, I might be satisfied, but by that point I might want to set a "final" goal. Of course, 100 pounds is a lot to lose, it would put me 23 pounds lighter than the last time my diet ended, so I expect this will take quite a long time, at least 18 months (and that seems wildly optimistic), to 2 or 2.5 years.

If I lose 100 pounds, I will reach a weight I have not been at since 1996 (the year I was married).

Wish me luck!

Written on September 14, 2006