Friday, April 3, 2015

Nine Months

It was bound to happen someday, and that someday is today:

I didn't lose any weight this month.

I weigh 220 pounds, which is exactly what I weighed a month ago. I'm still obese, still not at my goal weight, and made no measurable progress toward it this month. I've had all day to think about it since I weighed myself this morning, seven hours and six miles ago, and I'm not as upset about this as I would have been back at the two month mark or the three month mark. There are a few reasons for this:

1) I didn't gain any weight. I may not have lost any, but I didn't put any back on, so even though I made no progress I am still ahead of where I was.

2) I have been way, way off diet for this month. I've eaten candy, a lot of candy. I've exceeded my 2000 calorie a day limit several times this month. By my rough guesstimate, about 20 days, actually. That's a lot of extra calories, but I also increased my daily step goal to 13,000 steps a day this month, and most days I don't just meet it, but instead exceed it.

I'm not upset because this month of dietary backsliding has proven something important: I can balance diet and exercise to maintain weight. Granted, 220 is not a weight that I want to maintain, as I am still twenty pounds from my goal weight and eleven pounds from being overweight instead of being obese, but knowing that I can maintain my weight instead of putting it back on is good to know. I don't remember which blog entry I posted it in, but several months ago I said, "I will have to exercise regularly for the rest of my life if I don't want to be obese," and now I've proven that it will work. I can slip off of my diet more days than I stay on it, but with the right amount of exercise added to that I can maintain.

I really have to buckle down and stop slipping off of my diet, though. It will be nice to maintain my weight when I get to my goal, but since I'm not there yet I need to go back to reducing mode, not maintenance. Especially since I have registered for a half marathon in September. I need to be smaller and faster by the time that rolls around, and 220 pounds is not small and fast enough.

On the plus side, now that the weather is warmer I can get off of my treadmill and start walking outside after work again. In order to do that more often and with less annoyance, I've purchased something called a "runner pack":

runner pack

I now dare you, dear reader, to try to explain to me how this is not a fanny pack.

I stumbled into this because I keep hitting my hands on my legs while I walk. It doesn't happen with every single step I take, but it happens often enough that it's annoying, because it's my thumb that's always taking the brunt of it, and for some reason the angle always seems to be exactly right (or wrong) for it to be the bone at the base of my thumb that crashes into something. My left thumb gets poked and stabbed by my keys and my right thumb smacks into the corner of my phone, sometimes hard enough to pop open my phone case. It's annoying, and I needed a solution, so I asked for suggestions on Facebook. After a spirited debate about whether I needed to carry anything in my pockets at all besides the car key and a number of derogatory statements about the acceptability of fanny packs in public, some of my friends suggested something called a "runner pack", and my mom helpfully pointed out that runner packs on Amazon would have free shipping under Amazon Prime. Everyone was in complete agreement that a runner pack is totally different from a fanny pack. Totally.

They're not.

I find it kind of hilarious that everyone was like, "Oh, no, it's not a fanny pack. It's a runner pack," because now that I have one, it's a fanny pack. It's smaller and skinnier and holds less stuff, but it's a fanny pack. Denying that is just a mental exercise in self-deception.

Here's the thing, though: I don't actually care what it's called if it serves the purpose.

If I want to walk the Greenway after work, I am on a clock. The sun sets every day between 7 and 8 this time of year, but by 7 it's dark enough that I don't want to be on the Greenway anymore. I work until 5 most days, and even if I'm already changed into my walking clothes by 5 (which happens on good days, when it is slow and quiet enough in the afternoon for me to shut my door at 4:50 and get changed; I still answer the phone, but I don't answer the door because I assume the university doesn't want me to do so in my underwear) campus traffic and city traffic can keep me from getting to the Greenway and onto the path for 40 or 50 minutes, and that's if I actually get to leave right at 5. Sure, stopping to stow everything in my glove compartment and then to thread my car key through the laces of my shoe is only an extra minute or two, but for my convenience I just wanted to take everything that I have normally in my pants pockets and dump it into something else.

A fanny pack would have served that purpose, but I now have this runner pack instead.

Which, I guess, means that someday I'll have to become a runner.

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