Monday, December 10, 2012

Overhauling my wardrobe

Today I went to Marshalls with one purpose: Find a pair of flesh-colored thermals to wear as a costume for tonight's broomball game. Instead, I walked out an hour later with over $150 worth of t-shirts and long-sleeve shirts.

What had started as an "Ooh, that's a really cute shirt," turned into a much-needed overhaul of my closet.

This isn't the good kind of overhaul that comes with weight-loss since I haven't lost enough to need any new clothes. It's the opposite kind of change where I've refused to buy bigger clothes and thus only wear the ones that still fit, which tend to be the baggy pajama-y t-shirts I've had since college. And I'm kind of tired of making due with what still fits.

Every year I make a birthday resolution to dress better and take care of myself more, and it usually lasts all of two weeks before I go back to the comfort of workout shirts. But I really feel serious about this one because I've started liking looking pretty.

And by that I don't mean that I'll suddenly start wearing heels and putting on make-up. I'm very far from that degree of dressing up. But putting on a nice shirt with some cute jeans a few times a week is definitely something that I'm ready and excited for. And the shirts I got today were both shirts for the bars and also for everyday life, so they're very versatile and not overly fancy.

My only concern was that I wouldn't get much use out of these clothes because I won't fit into them very shortly (yet another instance of wishful thinking with regards to weight-loss). I didn't want to blow all this money on stuff that would last maybe one season. But I've been saying this for years now and instead of losing weight, I've been wearing frumpy clothes that I'm not exactly happy with.

So I'm taking a different approach this time and dressing myself well while I'm still at this weight and if I have to buy new clothes in a month or two then so be it. At least it'll be for a good reason (weight-loss!) that time around.

Also, most of the shirts I bought today are stretchy and will still look good if I drop down a size or two. Or they can turn into real pajamas if I they look too big. Either way, I think I'll keep these guys around for a while. They're really cute!

Lastly, I'm mostly down to a M/L in tops, which greatly confuses me. I don't think I've lost any significant weight since last time I went shopping (maybe 5 lbs) so I'm thinking it's just a difference in material this time around. Whatever the reason, it's nice to get out of the XL section.

Now I'm thinking that I'm more of a L rather than M because the one M shirt I wore today is so tight that you can see the creases from my bra through it. I mean, it doesn't feel tight or even all that snug, but you can tell it's stretched over my body since every fold of my back is visible through it. Then again, that's pretty evident with every shirt I wear so maybe the size of the shirt isn't the problem after-all. Also, when I tried on the L, it seemed a bit droopy so I think this is the better choice of the two sizes.

Ay ay ay! I am so indecisive about everything.

On another note, I am indeed losing weight and gaining will-power. I turned down a beer last night after my broomball game so that I could get an accurate weigh-in today. And I'm down to a weight I haven't been since April of this year, which was also my lowest weight of the year thus far (214.0 lb). Woohoo!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

I eat too much, or exercise too little

I've been diligently tracking my food for the past couple of weeks and for me to lose 1.5 lbs a week (my current goal), I need to eat only 1370 calories a day. I've found that that is woefully too little.

On my most successful days, I average around 1600-1700, which is nowhere near the goal. By the way, I define success as not being hungry and feeling fulfilled both physically and mentally with regards to food. For example, I don't ever want to feel deprived because I know that is not a sustainable way of life, which is my ultimate goal for this weight-loss journey.

If I want something sweet, I would like to be able to have it, even if it's just one chocolate square and not the whole chocolate bar. I've gotten much better about meting out my sweets in that I won't have the chocolate and the ice cream and the eggnog all in one day. However, I will have a small bit of one of those things because I crave sugar and don't feel good without it.

I know that's a problem that needs to be dealt with some day (once I get the exercise and portion sizes under control), but at the same time I feel like I shouldn't cut out an entire food group from my diet. I can't live without any sugar for the rest of my life and therefore I shouldn't be using that technique now because I want this lifestyle change to be sustainable.

So if having the little things that get me through the day means I will lose a little slower, so be it. I'm currently losing about a pound a week, and that's with very minimal exercise (and a significant amount of beer...also something I need to cut down on). If I can regularly get out the door for some biking or running then I think I can ramp up the rate of loss.

Edited to add:
My sugar intake is also in the form of apples, mangoes, oranges, etc. So I'm not just eating junk food. I simply find that I need sugary things as snacks (~80-100 calories per snack) and decently sized meals (~400 calories per meal) not to feel deprived at the end of the day. For me, deprivation is not sustainable even for the short-term, so I'm trying the slower method of weight-loss and so far it's working (slowly).

Also, the 1370 number is my net calorie goal for the day. So if I exercise, I "earn" those extra calories, which means that the more I exercise the more I can eat. On days I run (I'm doing Couch to 10k currently...again) I get about 100-200 calories more and on bike ride days I earn upwards of 700 calories.

Regardless of exercise, I try to keep my calorie count as low as I can sustain, which I've found is ~1600 calories for the day.