Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Small, Medium, Large: What's in a Size?

I ended my first 30 day challenge at the end of July and started up a new one, on a harder mode. I just wanted to check off the fact that I accomplished one of my short term goals: fitting comfortably in my normal clothes.

Mind you, I didn't change my diet. Instead, I was just working out between 20 and 30 minutes for 2 days and then a day off. Even so, I now fit into my regular clothes without that irritating roll you get when you overflow your clothes. I hate that. Hate it.

Strangely enough, I seem to have several different sizes of my "regular" clothes. Even though they all say Size X, I notice that this Size X is a little looser than that Size X which is a little looser than that other Size X. Why is that? If something is supposed to be X sized, why is it that there's a kind of range that every different designer uses? You can't quite fit into the next size down and are horrified by the thought of trying on the next size up.

Down is good. Up is bad.

I don't want to freak out about the number sewed into my pants, but when one designer's clothes are straining at the seams and another's clearly require a belt that's just crazy talk.


Irritating as all of that is, I currently fit comfortably into the skinny version of Size X. This...pleases me.

I am now into the second week on the harder mode and I have noticed a definite improvement in my cardio. I can suddenly run (in place) for longer without sounding like I'm about to lose a lung! Whee! I still hate jump lunges though. I suspect that won't change.

The things that really struck me after finishing the first 30 day challenge is the fact that
  1. weight loss really is all about calories in. You can exercise all you want for 30 minutes but that 150, 175 or 200 calories burned is gone in an instant once you down that ice cream cone. The chocolate one. The one you deserve for working so hard. Whoops!
  2. the challenge is really just to get you into the habit of exercising. Unfortunately we can't just work out, get into shape and then be done with it. Damn you, Entropy! *shaking fist at sky*
  3. if I want to get in better shape even faster, it's time to start reining in the calories. Except that I just made these yummy blue corn meal corn muffins (Thanks Scott & Sierra!). And zucchini bread. And the pizza. It calls to me. Damn you, Yummy Food! *weeps into her ice cream*

So it's time to aim for my midterm goal: fitting into my "skinny me" clothes. Goodbye ice cream!

Goodbye for now. You will be mine again! Maybe...maybe on the weekends.

*Hatchet assumes her brave face.*

Ooh! Related link!
"...the muscle-fat relationship is often misunderstood. According to calculations published in the journal Obesity Research by a Columbia University team in 2001, a pound of muscle burns approximately six calories a day in a resting body, compared with the two calories that a pound of fat burns. Which means that after you work out hard enough to convert, say, 10 lb. of fat to muscle — a major achievement — you would be able to eat only an extra 40 calories per day, about the amount in a teaspoon of butter, before beginning to gain weight. Good luck with that."
-- Why Exercise Won't Make You Thin, Time.com

It's all about Fork Control. Sad, but true.


Missy said...

Boy have I learned the one about fork control. Keeping track of how much is going in has truly been the key to my weightloss. Last month I thought I could just guess, and quit keeping track. Guess what. NO weight loss at all last month. This month, tracking calories..weight coming off again. I did keep up with regular exercise and was able to keep from gaining any weight.

I use a free online calorie tracker at fitday.com. You can track your daily calories, exercise and all that jazz. I have found it to be really helpful and uhhh... enlightening. I really had no idea how many calories I was consuming. No.Idea.

Keep up the good work! Fitting in to clothes is a very good thing!

Dawn said...

Why do you think I hate clothes shopping so much that I tortured mom into helping buy clothes for the 3-day cruise I went on a few years back?!?!

Jennifer H said...

Me, to french fries: "So long, old friends..." :)

Ed said...

So... I may be going out on a limb here, but I'm reasonably sure that when you say "Size X" you're not using roman numerals. Right?

And yes, portion control is amazingly important!

Shaari1 said...

This is something I've always had trouble with, in a big way. I've been trying to exercise more, but you're right, it's about what we put in. Horribly, the pizza not only knows my name, it knows where I live, and it's not afraid to mug me in a dark alley.

Woman with a Hatchet said...

Missy: I've used Fit Day, too! That thing is crazy eye opening, ain't it?

Dawn: Just keep up the good work. The hardest part is getting over the feeling that you can't EVER lose the damned weight. You can. It's just hard.

Jennifer: Sniffle! I like fries, too!

Ed: What you don't know.... : )

Shaari: You've gotta watch out for that pizza, man! Sounds deadly! Of course, if you make your own...you get to burn calories that you otherwise wouldn't!

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