WEEK 1: 2013
(Beginning Weight: 264.6
Week 1 weight loss: 8 pounds)
The girl who used to be able to run 3 miles in 33 minutes has become the girl who can barely walk 1.5 miles in 33 minutes. Because of my stressful schedule and fear of running and hurting my joints at this high weight, I've been getting in my exercise by walking more between Metro stops. On a good day, I'll walk 1.5 miles on the way to work, then hop on Metro for the remainder, and walk 1 mile on my way home, then ride the rest.
On Sunday, during my 1.5-mile walk to the Courthouse Metro Station, I was passed by two little twiggies -- women dressed in black tights, neon-colored running shoes and bubble vest jackets. One's hair was long and blond and shiny. The other had her's pulled back into a bouncing ponytail. As they passed me by, I thought back to my Week 1 column from 2003 and how I was passed by a woman wearing jeans. This time, I told myself, being passed by these fit young women was natural -- of course people who weigh half of what you weigh can walk faster than you.
I kept up my "speed"-walking and kept my eye on the two, wondering how little time it would take until they were out of sight because they had gained so much distance on me. But then they turned around and walked back, and I breathed a sigh of relief that I'd never have to find out. Until.
Until I saw that one woman was texting while she walked.
So I was being outpaced by a woman who was walking while texting.
I got in the walking only three times this week -- though one day was a double-whammy of 1.5 miles to work and the entire 5.3 miles home. Yes, on a cold, dark night in D.C. I decided to walk home. And those 5.3 miles took me TWO HOURS.
But I did it and I'm glad I can say I did it. Perhaps the walking helped contribute to the weight-loss. Perhaps the excessive amounts of water I've had to drink helped. Perhaps the diet.
So what kind of diet am I following? It's not actually a diet, per se. Because of my lack of time to prepare food (which then leads me to eat crap) and because a lot of that lack of time is because of my freelance work (which I do not necessarily do for the money but because I love doing it), I decided to take the money from my last freelance job and order food from a place called Healthy Bites in D.C. It delivers (twice a week) breakfast/lunch/dinner/2 snacks that are fresh, contain local produce and are low on the glycemic index. It doesn't consider itself a weight-loss service but its meals are very healthy. And easy, which right now I need.
I'll continue using this service (or one of the other ones -- I'm lucky in that the D.C. area has a lot of options) while I have freelance work. And hopefully it will give me the jumpstart I need. When/if it comes to the point I can't afford it anymore, I'll rethink my plan.
So this past week I've eaten more vegetables than ever and lots of fruit, but also some healthy muffins and interesting foods I had never tried before: kale, coconut lentils, lots of quinoa, goat cheese polenta, etc.
I avoided weighing myself the whole week, so I wasn't sure if the program was going to be successful. I think the real test will be next Tuesday, as I have always been able to drop a lot the first week (water weight) and then it just....sticks.
I still need to find a way to handle the stress -- but I'm hoping, hoping, hoping that as soon as I can start running again, that will be a good outlet. I just pray I can get there.
WEEK 1: 2003
(Beginning Weight: 317
Week 1 weight loss: 6.8 pounds)
Sweat pouring down my face, my breath exhaling in short, hard puffs, I was hard at work –
Then, out of the blue, someone came up from behind and passed me. She was walking her dog. No, scratch that. She was taking her dog for a casual stroll.
And she passed me.
It’s humbling – to be out-walked by someone in jeans who appeared to be bored and didn’t have a drop of sweat on her face. But that’s what I’m facing these days – the early stages of a daily exercise routine.
Week 1 of this attempt at diet (er, healthy eating) and exercise produced great results – a loss of 6.8 pounds. It was thrilling to see those pounds vanish – though I’ve had to remind myself that the journey is a long one and each weekly weigh-in won’t continue to produce big drop-offs in weight.
But I do feel I’m on my way.
Week 1 wasn’t so bad. I walked nearly every day (minus a much needed Sunday rest) and ate what I should (though the intake of veggies wasn’t as high as it needs to be). I didn’t deprive myself of a night at a restaurant – a trip to Indochine – though I kept my portion of Pad Thai small and used chopsticks.
I won’t say it’s been easy. Trips to any store remind you of the approaching Valentine’s Day, which screams for me to buy an armful of chocolate. I won’t, though. I promise.
And there have been those mornings where hitting “snooze” seemed more desirable than hitting the pavement.
But something has kept me going. For one, I feel the support of strangers, friends and colleagues who have embraced this challenge of mine and who have offered their kind words and “you go, girl” encouragement. Who couldn’t succeed with the army of support behind you? And what a blessing that is.
Two – I’ve felt a little more at peace. My hope – in hindsight, actually – is that by having put the past on paper, by logging those failed attempts, those hurtful experiences, my fat history, I’m putting it to rest. I’m closing a book on the past. I’m moving forward with a new life and a new way of living.
Living, after all, is the key word.