Health and Fitness Update (or Confession!)

zapopan gymOn August 10th I posted about “Food and Fitness Tracking“.   I think that at that point in time I might have been a bit delusional about my actual weight (and health).  I probably should have included a little addendum or something about how I couldn’t actually fit into any of my pants.  Now, my pants aren’t that big in the first place: I have a huge wardrobe of pants in sizes two and four, all of which I had taken in (basically to size zero) when I reached my “goal” weight a few years ago.  And technically I could squeeze into them, but I’d be sporting so much muffin top you’d be looking for my strusel.  However, it’s getting cold here, and with my tuition expenses I don’t have the money to buy a whole new wardrobe, so I’d like to be able to fit into the pants I already own.

Since then I’ve been tracking my food and fitness religiously on SparkPeople.com: you can see my food and fitness tracker here and sign up yourself here (yes, my actual dinner tonight was chips and three Halloween candy bars… I’m calling it a Vegetarian Thanksgiving and that’s that).  I tend to look at things week-by-week rather than day-by-day, and have been trying to eat (on average) fewer than 1550 calories each day while burning at least 1200 calories through exercise each week.  (I would strongly encourage you to look at my previous entries if you’re interested in what I eat… today was an extreme anomaly in Dietland!)

Over the past six weeks or so I’ve gone from feeling bad about how I looked to knowing that my body is a nice shape.  Sometimes I look at the ProgressPics subreddit and realize that my current weight (at my height) is lower than what most people on there have as their final goal.  My BMI is safely in the healthy range.  But I still can’t really fit into any pants.  I’m going to need to lose more weight.  I don’t mind eating healthily and exercising regularly, but I kind of wish that I could speed my progress a bit.  If only there were some kind of diet credit card where you could get your weight loss up front and pay for it in installments of diet and exercise over the following days, weeks and months!

What is the lesson I’m learning from all of this?  Only take in half of your pants when you reach your goal weight?  Buy cheap new pants before the first snowfall for your own health and safety?  Be happy that you’re thinner than the people on /r/progresspics?  Keep losing weight until you can fit back into your size zero pants and never gain again?  I honestly have no idea.  What I do know is that I used to be really thin, then I gained weight, now I’m losing it again and there is also a 99% probability that, just like I am always striving to learn more and climb the career ladder, I will probably always be looking for a way to become thinner, stronger or faster.  I don’t feel like a failure for gaining that weight back (I backpacked across Europe, discovering beer in the process, had a few serious illnesses back-to-back upon my return, and was then in a bad car accident that left me unable to exercise for a few months), but I also don’t feel especially proud of losing what I’ve (re-)lost so far.  I just feel grumpy about not being able to fit into my (really cute!) pants.

For a much more insightful look at the cycle of losing and gaining weight, read this recent post by Andie at Can You Stay for Dinner?