The Halfway mark of my #100Days challenge was yesterday. I haven’t been posting my weekly progress, I’m still measuring every Monday, and spent an hour one day researching the difference between a waist and an abdomen.
When I started tracking this back in January, I told myself I wanted to lose about 4-6 inches from all over because I have Plans.
I still have plans and now 7 weeks in, I realize I was either very naive or utterly delusional. Not about the fact that I couldn’t lose the necessary inches – that was never an issue. I was delusional about how much I needed to lose.
I haven’t budged so much as fluctuated weight-wise but it was never about that. I’m full-figured, if that’s what they’re still calling it, and there are places that will always have just a little more padding. It’s genetics and we’ll always fight to a draw.
It’s the inches that matter and that’s where I see progress.
Side by side, the numbers don’t look like they’ve moved a lot, but they really kind of have.
I can tell. Everything fits better (or at least looser) and even my workout clothes aren’t as tight as they used to be, though they could just be very, very tired. It’s almost 16 inches, a lot in places I hadn’t considered, and along the way I’ve learned quite a bit about weight loss – what works, what’s a comfortable lie, and what I need to do to keep going.
I used to think that all I had to do to lose some weight was run. I picked up running because it was a cheaper alternative to a gym (outside was free, after all) so last winter, I started the Counch to 5K plan. I actually started more than once, due to weather or laziness or out of town trips for imaginary movie projects. Once I found a groove, I ran two to three times a week, thrilled with my progress, and at least feeling healthier. I ran a number of 5Ks, each time doing better, running longer, feeling accomplished. I probably would have continued through the winter, if the snow hadn’t landed so hard on Michigan.
This winter was harsher than most and I’m a baby about the cold so I ended up joining a gym anyway. “I’m just going to use the treadmills, I don’t need all of the fancy stuff, like weights and machines” was my mantra, and it kept me from joining a gym with extra facilities I wasn’t ever going to use – like a sauna or pool. Turns out I did need all of that fancy weight stuff. It’s not enough to run and get the heart rate up. Granted, some exercise is better than no exercise, but cardio isn’t enough to burn the amount of fat I was looking to lose. There went one of those comfortable lies. Running wasn’t enough to lose weight in any meaningful way. I’d been running a year and even though I could run a 5K in under 40 minutes without barfing up my lungs and I’d been eating better than I had in years, I was still unhappy with the way I looked.
Last month I picked up weight training. I learned about trading muscle for fat, all over cross training and that’s when the inches really started tightening up. There is no “toning” without weights and I could forget about bulking up like a leathery. slippery body-builder. I wasn’t taking those kinds of supplements .
Now things fit better. I can look forward to that dress I’ve had my eye on. I can wear shirts that actually button in the front, and slip into pants without worrying about the muffin top blocking my pockets. I mean, yay for you and your self-image if you’re comfortable with yours, but I hate looking like I’m smuggling pool noodles.
If only they would stop making low-rise jeans. No one looks good in those, but it’s all they sell, as if we all have flat stomachs and no asses. I eat and I have an ass andI am tired sitting down and fearing my crack will frighten small children, or unattended men will try to make a home in the folds. Frankly I’d rather wear jeans that look and feel comfortable than shelter a developing village under my muffin top because some designer has confused “waist” with “abdomen”.
So there, the midway update. Not quite the weekly one I wanted, but it’s embarassing how time gets away from me, and how little of it there is. I now do weights three days a week and I run three days a week, and three of those days overlap. More than anything I’m looking forward to running outside again.
C’mon Spring. I’ve only got 49 days left in this challenge and I’d like to see some sunshine to go with it.