The Giraffe Outside

Staying at Disney’s Animal Kingdom on our annual end-of-January trip to visit The Mouse(tm). After missing two weeks in the pool because of an awful cold, we hit the pool today. Been pretty good food-wise. Splitting meals and taking advantage of snacking at the concierge lounge (and they have no shortage of healthy stuff). I’ve developed a bit of a taste for Quinoa, which is actually pretty good for breakfast (they have this topping I can’t figure out, but it sure is good).

Below is a view out our window. I think this is a giraffe named “Miles.”


Week 28 Weigh-in

After being very, very close to completely compliant this week, we had a very nice weigh-in today. I’m down 4.4 pounds and Tom is down 7.0 pounds for the week. We’re shorting for another very compliant since I’m just 2.8 pounds from my 50 pounds lost goal and Tom is just 5 pounds from his 350 pounds goal. My birthday being next Tuesday throws a bit of a snag into the week, but we’ve already decided that we’re going to split an entree at Jean-Ro Bistro that night before going to see “Wicked“. Wish us luck!

Official Weight (after twenty-eight weeks): 233.8 lb – loss of 47.2 pounds
Home Scale (after twenty-eight weeks): 232.0 lb – loss of 46.0 pounds

Official Weight (after twenty-eight weeks): 355.0 lb – loss of 79.0 pounds
Home Scale (after twenty-eight weeks): 351.4 – loss of 73.6 pounds


Oh yeah, I’m supposed to post too…

My silence lately hasn’t been for lack of excitement. Carla’s post pretty much lays it out.

I’m ecstatic.

It’s great to see the scale go down. It’s great to look in the mirror and get a quick little “whoa” when you realize you look different. It’s great to be in a position where a week ago I was wondering if I’d ever get 360 in my rear-view mirror and now I’m within a couple of days of getting below the 350 milestone.

(This is a big deal for me. Outside of being the midpoint between three and four-hundred, it’s also is the upper limit of many of the balance-type scales in most of the doctor’s offices I’ve ever been too. I know they make ones that go higher, but my docs never seemed to use them. What I think all doctors should understand is that the shame of topping out the scale goes away after a couple of visits (and you only go when you have to anyway) and after that it becomes much easier to rationalize because you honestly don’t know how much you weigh. Could be 351, Could be 400. Now this doesn’t make the weight the fault of the cheap-ass physician who won’t cough up $199.95 for a scale that will honestly tell you your freaking weight, but they, of all people, know good and well that denial ain’t just a river in Egypt and the capacity for humans to bullshit themselves is unlimited. See Bush, GW, Election and Presidency of.)

As great as all the weight loss is, it’s not as good as what’s going on between my ears. (The voices don’t seem to echo so much. No. Wait. That’s not it…)

I’m actually…happy.

There. I said it.

I worked at home most of last week. I’m doing some programming that’s making me learn some stuff that I’ve more-or-less avoided because it wasn’t worth it to me to learn it until now. I realized that as much as I work in a ‘Dilbert’ cartoon, the team I’m a part of is really, really good. It’s nice to have the option to crank out code at home when I have to have few distractions, but also enjoy the folks I work with when I go in. A hard combination to beat.

And I have energy. I’m doing more housekeeping than I’ve done in years, and very possibly, ever. I’m getting into throwing shit away. I’ve never, ever, ever liked to throw shit away. I learned a lesson when Carla and I cleaned out Mom’s house when she went into assisted living: nostalgia comes at a big price when it comes time to clean things out. I didn’t have the energy to do anything with that lesson until now. My old desk was stacked up with crap from at least three years of neglect. I got up last Monday and cleared it off in less than an hour so I could set up my work laptop in there with an external monitor. Been routinely unloading the dishwasher. I remember that being an effortful activity. (Holy crap. How am I still alive if THAT was effort?) Need me to go to the store? No problem. I’m turning freaking domestic, and I don’t have a problem with that.

All that being said, approaching 350 is significant for another reason. It’s the only landmark I’ve focused on to this point. It’s terra incognita from here on out (did you know it was pronounced ter-ra in-COG-nit-a and not terra in-cog-NIT-a? Me either…). I dipped below it when we did this 5 years ago, but it was a short visit. When I was working on my Master’s at SFA I lost a bunch of weight to get down to 300, but that didn’t even last until I graduated in ’89. So it’s very likely — and it’s ambiguous for reasons stated in my digression above — that I’m now “down” to the weight I’ve most often been in my life.

So the question on the table now is, simply, where to go from here? BMI tells me that I should be between 150 and 200, but that is just bullshit. I said 270 when I started this (because I had to give them some number) and that’s what the body composition analysis suggested when we did it on the cruise in November. But in the back of my mind, I’ve wondered if that’s really the right weight either. This website is extremely interesting. A Canadian M.D. who also wrote Mac software in the early days of the Mac. What’s not to love? I draw your attention to this discussion of “ideal weight.” Throw in the parameters for me (age 44, 6′ 4″, 352) and what do you know? 271 is the weight that pops back. But then you read the part that says that men tend to overestimate what weight is actually healthy, and I’ve picked a weight that others who weigh as much as I do tend to pick. Since I tend to hold the collective opinions of others in contempt (it’s a gift), that means it’s not where I’m stopping.

So for now I’ll say 250, but the answer really is that I’ll get to 270 and worry about it then. It’s not aesthetics I’m after (hell, I’m thrilled now), but quality of life. I’d hate to stop just short of getting it right.

But that’s in the future. For now, it’s keep plugging away.

And that’s that.

Back on the program

So the last two days have been spent being damn near 100% compliant. And it shows! The scale dropped dramatically for both of us. I had given up on the idea of us reaching our goals for our Walt Disney World (50 lbs lost for me and Tom at or below 350), but it looks possible again. We’re going to keep shooting for near 100% compliant for the next three days. I’m making chicken enchilada soup this afternoon, but we each only get one official sized serving today. Tomorrow will probably be another grilled chicken and low fat Caesar salad night and then on Tuesday, it’s Shakey’s night and hot slaw. I’m actually looking forward to weigh-in on Wednesday!

Official Weight (after twenty-seven weeks): 238.2 lb – loss of 42.8 pounds
Home Scale (after twenty-seven weeks and four days): 231.8 lb – loss of 46.2 pounds

Official Weight (after twenty-seven weeks): 362.0 lb – loss of 72.0 pounds
Home Scale (after twenty-seven weeks and four days): 351.8 – loss of 73.2 pounds



First of all, the great stairs challenge of 2008 is officially over. My knees are killing me so that’s that. I think I’m okay doing a single flight of stairs now and then, but I can’t do seven flights at once multiple times a day. It makes me sad though because I was just starting to feel those muscles in my legs that I haven’t used for 15 years and it felt good. Oh well… back to the water aerobics!

Second, for some amazing comparisons, check out the side-by-side photos of us on our Weight Loss Photo Log – We both spent a lot of time last night just saying “wow.”

We’re being fully compliant and it feels good. Things have settled into their normal routines and doing the shakes is easier now. We’ve also made the decision that, with rare exceptions, we are going to split entrees whenever we go out to eat and that includes our Walt Disney World trip later this month. I definitely think that will help us stay on course.


Week 27 Weigh-in

Well, it turns out the past week has been something of a transition week as we move from the holidays to just regular weeks. The Christmas/New Years weight is pretty much gone and we’re both definitely down from where we were before Thanksgiving.

I’m still on my stairs challenge and added some extra ones today when I needed to go to the bookstore. My knees were a bit achy Monday night, but I think that was more due to the changing weather and the fact that our sofa is at a weird height for my legs.

New photos coming later today!

Official Weight (after twenty-seven weeks): 238.2 lb – loss of 42.8 pounds
Home Scale (after twenty-seven weeks): 236.4 lb – loss of 41.6 pounds

Official Weight (after twenty-seven weeks): 362.0 lb – loss of 72.0 pounds
Home Scale (after twenty-seven weeks): 359.2 – loss of 65.8 pounds


Changes for 2008

For years, I was told to not do stairs due to my bad knees (chondromalacia of the patella to be exact). I’m discovering that since losing 40 pounds and working out in the water so much, my knees are stronger now and only “complain” when the weather is changing. So, for 2008, I’ve tentatively trying to put stairs back in my life. There are two sets of stairs with five flights total between my parking space and my office. My goal is to be able to do them all without getting winded.

Today, I did every flight of stairs that came my way, except one… I only took the elevator for that one flight as a social courtesy to the people I was walking and talking with at that point in time.

Wish me luck!


UPDATE (1/6): I did stairs for three days this week and my knees aren’t any different than before the stairs. So I’m continuing the experiment next week.

Free at last!

While most people are anxious for the holidays to arrive, Tom and I have been anxious for the holidays to be over. I don’t know how many times one of us said, “Is it January 2nd yet?” Well, that day is finally here and we are finally free of holiday luncheons and cookies and well meaning people giving us high caloric foods as gifts. Hallelujah!

We have enjoyed ourselves food-wise the last two weeks, but much less than we would have in past years. And we know whatever weight we put this past week will be gone very soon by just being 100% compliant.

Also, this week marks six months on the liquid diet. As Wendy, the nurse at Nutri-Med said this morning, we’re “in it for the long haul.”

Official Weight (after twenty-six weeks): 240.4 lb – loss of 40.6 pounds
Home Scale (after twenty-six weeks): 238.4 lb – loss of 39.6 pounds

Official Weight (after twenty-six weeks): 366.6 lb – loss of 67.4 pounds
Home Scale (after twenty-six weeks): 364.0 – loss of 61.0 pounds