Wednesday, December 2, 2015

The Smaller Side of Fat

I’ve lost 25 pounds this year.  Not earth shattering, but also it is quite noteworthy.    It was 14% of my body.   Before you read on, I give you this disclaimer.  If you are offended at actual ‘numbers’, please stop reading.   I’m on the ‘smaller’ side of fat, but still fat.  I have every right to feel fat, the charts tell me I’m obese and I’m doing what I can.

I do not represent every ‘fat girl’; nor do I represent every physically challenged person, nor every short person, nor every slow person,  nor every middle aged person, etc. I have a story and it inspires others who are ‘similar’ to get off their rear ends and realize THEY CAN.  

I was 175 pounds in January. Today I’m 150.   I’ve seen folks say things to us ‘smaller fat people’  “wow I WISH I was ONLY  175” or “Don’t make me feel bad about myself, I  would be so happy to be xxx lbs.”  Ok, GREAT, then get on with your journey and back off of mine.   It is unfair to judge me or others like me for celebrating our numbers.  I kid you not, I’m fat (I’m ok with that F word). No need to say “oh but you aren’t fat.”—I am, and it’s cool.  Don’t judge me because I’m not “fat enough” for you.  Please refrain from comment on others too who have the GUTS to mention their weight, don’t belittle their accomplishment because your numbers are different.   Our society has such a stigma on weight, let’s support each other rather than making it a competition.

I don't see the weightloss???

So if you’re’ still reading, thank you.   I didn’t even plan on this post, but I’ve had so many comments on my appearance lately that I thought I should bring it up.   I lost 25 lbs leading up to Ironman, but I didn’t “feel good” about it.  I could tell my pants were saggy in the legs and butt, but my belly was still “huge.”  I couldn’t understand why 25 pounds didn’t give me a new pant size.   Frustration was an understatement.

In the last month or so, I’ve seen many folks who haven’t seen me in months and they started to notice. I would get the compliments “Wow, you look great.” After a few of them, I started to wonder what they saw that I didn’t see.  Then I looked at old pictures.  I lost it in my face and some other areas. I was too focused on my damn belly that I missed the big picture.   I chalk the belly up to being middle aged and the fact that I really struggle with any worthwhile strength workouts (EDS crap).  Thank you to those who have noticed, you made ME notice.

I challenge all of you to just take a monthly picture on your journey, and LOOK  at them.  Stop staring at that ‘problem area’ and celebrate the rest of you.

Method to my madness:

.**Everything I say here is different for everyone and is very much trial and error. This is just my story.

I was asked “what did I do (to lose the weight).”  Well, trained for an Ironman. However, with my previous Ironman training, I gained weight, so I do attribute my current loss to focusing on a few different things.

I pretty much stopped ‘counting calories.’ That wasn’t working for me.   I ate decent meals, I tried to be conscience of limiting breads or white flour.  A big thing for me last year was ham, egg and cheese bagel for pre-LONG workouts. It worked but also was keeping me fat. I removed those this year.

There is newer research out there that states, pretty much the obvious. There is no one ‘diet’ that will work for everyone. I’ve tried all of them. From the 80’s fads like cabbage soup (sit on crapper for days = lose weight), to Atkins, to Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers, even tried prescription diet pills, OTC meds, and in recent times, Paleo-ish.    I had most success with Atkins (yuck) and Paleo-ish. The problem is that I can’t figure out how to fuel properly for the long course with Paleo.
For me, counting calories makes me feel bad. I don’t want to feel bad so I stopped doing it.  I just watch what goes in my mouth and keep ‘mental’ notes on training. I need to make sure I get about 200 extra calories an hour when training.

 I also started focusing on my hydration.  I generally do not drink enough during the day or during exercise. I carry my hydration on bike and run so I can sip. Gulping at aid stations doesn’t work for me.  I do not drink much caffeine/coffee either.  I have the occasional iced coffee.  (If you do drink them,  make sure you know exactly what is in your drink, even though I don’t “COUNT” my calories, I don’t want to have a beverage that is 400 calories)!

I have a wide variety of things I eat while working out, yes I eat carbs but try to limit them.  You don’t “need” any of these expensive shakes, mixes, hydration, etc, but they do make things "easier."  I have a wide variety of things I will eat, mostly because I get tired of things and want ‘change’ so the more I can be comfortable with, the better.   I even packed a turkey sandwich with pickles on a few long rides this year (which was awesome btw).  There is nothing better than the looks you get from people on the bike path as you eat a pickle, in aero bars.


Bottom line is I stopped ‘focusing’ on what I was eating. I was sensible, I added back calories as I worked out, I focused on adequate hydration and I monitored my body. I had bad days, yes I ate a pizza (or nine), but I didn’t let that spiral me into eating crap all the time.

 Yes, I weigh myself daily.  That works for some people, it horrifies others. Do what works for you!  I carry about 4 pounds in inflammation; I know I carry them when I work out, but if I take a break the extra pounds just ‘disappear.’  I don’t get obsessed with the scale number, but I use it to evaluate the previous day.  Such as “did my food intake cause additional inflammation? Perhaps I shouldn’t eat that again.”

So yes, I lost some weight this year, yes I look different, yes I didn’t even notice until friends started to point it out.

If you see a friend who looks different, say something !  If a friend happens to talk about their specific numbers, congratulate them for taking the time to share.   Most importantly, find YOUR path, it really is a trial and error thing, what works for one person may not work for you. – Don’t give up!



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  1. Wow! losing 25 pounds is a progress. I find it really hard to lose 5 pounds, but 25 is just amazing. Thank you for sharing.

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