Sunday, 26 June 2011

Cold Weather and Dieting Sucks a.k.a Weekly Update #2

Sjoe, what a week ... first the almost unusually warm weather mid week followed by arguably the coldest Gauteng weather in recent memory. All this temperature yo-yoing left me with a slight cold which is not cool to say the least and not being able to eat my usual fair under these circumstances made me feel pretty miserable by weeks end.

Luckily all that misery cleared away quite quickly after my weigh in on Saturday morning when I learned that I dropped another 4.3 kilograms during the week. (Meaning I'm now at 11.1 kg lost in 3 weeks and 175.5kg overall) Speaking of this rapid weight loss I cannot stress enough that in reality any normal person with a slight to mild overweight problem cannot and shouldn't try to emulate these results. Most diet experts advocate a 2-3 kilo per month weight loss as being ideal and anything more is only setting yourself up for failure in the long term ... I'm no diet expert but when starting from such an extreme size as I did and simply switching to eating correctly it makes totally sense. Under no circumstances am I starving myself to death but I'm also not quite eating as much as the excellent BMR calculator over at Fat 2 Fit Radio suggests I should (I would like to reach my goal weight before reaching retirement age!) and I'm also under no illusion that this rapid trend will continue. A plateau will be reached where my body simply accepts my new calorific intake and weight loss will come to an almost standstill at which stage I hope (hold thumbs) I can kick things up a notch by starting to exercise a bit more (or let's be honest, actually start to exercise, at the moment I'm doing sweet bugger all in terms of actual exercise)

As a final note this week, last night was my first braai (or barbeque for those not from the great continent of Africa) with a bunch of friends since starting this whole diet thing. Fully expecting the same bunch of asses who continually mocked me for being a fat ass now tuning me for not eating half a cow or drinking a dozen beers with them, it actually came as quite a surprise to find them full of encouraging remarks and being totally supportive of my weight loss goals! So ja, I may not have been the life of the party but one day I'll join you again for a drink (or two or three) and at least I don't have a major hangover this morning like most of you probably have! :-)

Thanx guys, with friends like you around it certainly makes this journey I'm undertaking much more tolerable!

OK, the previous "note" was not so final ... for the week ahead I don't really foresee any difficulties but if this cold weather continues I'll try to make some sort of soup from whatever veg/protein I'm allowed. I'm starting to develop a small craving for my parents veggie soup (they make the most awesome 10-12 liter pot of veggie soup every weekend for consumption the week ahead but unfortunately it's laden with all sorts of starches and meat that I'm not allowed to have), my attempt will be a poor substitute for sure but it will have to do as sort of a consolation prize! Speaking of cravings I was also surprised not be tempted by the copious amounts of fillet, rump steak, spare ribs, boerewors and choppies that were on the braai last night. Sure it smelled divine and looked absolutely freaking awesome but my lonesome spiced up chicken breast looked equally enticing on the coals and at the end of the day it was delicious! (OK OK, I'll admit those chops made my mouth water but luckily I didn't give in to temptation) 

So there you go, that really was my last comment for the week which makes your misery of reading update #2 done and dusted ... Thanx for your support and please don't hesitate to leave a comment, I most definitely read everyone of them and really appreciate the effort it takes!

Same time, same place next week ... Cheers!

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Update #1 (with über important tip!)

Hi there, just a quick update after my second weigh in on Saturday … lost another 1.7 kilos during the week and broke through the 180kg barrier (Woot! only 80kg’s to go!) 

This in turn brings me to the one thing I left out last week … my actual goals!!!

In the short term I’m looking only at the 6 month duration of the Biggest Loser contest at work so I hope to at least break through the 150kg barrier by the 1st of December (although closer to 140 would be great) Losing 36 kilograms in 6 months (i.e. 6 kg per month) might seems a bit excessive to most diet experts but in reality I honestly believe if you’re mega-overweight as I am it’s not inconceivable (or even that unhealthy for that matter) 

Longer term ideally I would love to get into double figures (for the first time in probably 20 years) but being rather “big boned” it’s probably not going to happen very soon so 110kg by the December 2012 would be really, really awesome! Before I leave out another crucial stat I just have to mention that at least I’m 1.96m tall and 110-120kg’s in context of my length and nationality (South African for those who need a picture) isn’t such an astronomical number as you might think (unless you’re 50kg jockey perhaps?)  

And now for my very first diet tip so listen up people … if you’re on a calorie counting / weighing your portion type diet I would like to make a comment regarding the humble old kitchen scale … please make sure the one you are using is at least sort of accurate! Having followed my old SureSlim program for the past 2 weeks I never got the “hungry sensation” like I remembered having many, many years ago. I had a vague suspicion that even though I was weighing my portions I was simply eating too much. Well my suspicions were confirmed when I bought a 680gr chunk of white cheddar cheese that my old piece of crap scale measured at 590gr!!! That is a whopping 15% error! Anyway, to cut a long story short I bought a cheap electronic scale over the weekend and it’s much better (it measures the chunk of cheese @ 677gr) 

Tip #1 – Buy an accurate kitchen scale … it doesn’t have to be expensive, just accurate! 

Now that I‘m eating the recommended portion sizes hopefully I’ll see better results than the 1.7 odd kilos lost last week (Most people would probably find that quite acceptable but in all honesty that was less than 1% lost so I wasn’t the happiest camper) I'm definitely not a big supporter of starvation but let’s just say I’m considering the past 2 weeks as a practice run for the real program which started in earnest on Sunday, 19 June. 

So ja, there you have it - my first update. Maybe I’ll post something later in the week but I did make a weigh in appointment for Saturday so I’ll definitely give you an update after the weekend.


Friday, 17 June 2011

Hi and welcome to The LTFU Blog*

I’m starting this blog mainly as a motivational tool for my weight loss journey that started in earnest (again!) on the 1st of June 2011. This will be my second serious attempt at losing weight and hopefully things will work out better this time around. In all honesty I’m not writing this for the whole world to share in my sad panda story but purely to keep record of my lifestyle change and the ensuing fat loss (or so the theory goes). In the off chance that somebody else might actually visit this page I thought I might as well make it interesting and if anyone in a similar position finds something useful on this blog in future at least all this effort wouldn’t have been in vain. 

Let’s start off then with a short and painfully boring history lesson … About 10 years ago I started using the SureSlim program (yes the one that tests your blood and all sorts of other things) but please don’t get me wrong, it’s not as if I’ve suddenly realised that I’m fat and I needed to lose weight, I’ve always been the fat kid as far back as I can remember. I know I had some sort of kidney issues as baby/toddler but it’s not something I know or remember much about. I distinctly remember though being the biggest kid in our whole group when I started school and was pushing the scales close to 60kgs (which is apparently a lot for a 7-year old kid), the day I left school I couldn’t have been much less than 125kg. When I started the program for the first time, about 10 years after I left school, I’ve already ballooned to a not-so-beefy 150kg but following SureSlim’s sort-of personalised program for 8 months (without any form of exercise I might add) I’ve dropped down to approximately 115 kilos which I thought was pretty remarkable. Unfortunately around this same time I’ve lost my job and went through a 2-3 year period of not really knowing whether I was coming or going which saw me surely but slowly gain back everything I’ve lost. 

By 2004 my life was sort of back on track but by now I was so accustomed to this 150kg-ish bulk it didn’t really bother me at all. So it went for 5-6 years with me not really giving a hoot about my looks (or how people sometimes looked at me) but by the end of 2010 I started to notice that whenever I saw myself in a photo all I saw was this gigantic monstrosity. Deep inside I just knew that my 150kg days were long gone and that I’m just kidding myself to think along those terms.  Even my closest friends of many years started asking embarrassing questions and made comments on my huge size. Being the “jolly guy” that I am it was pretty easy to joke about it and laugh out loud whenever the subject got mentioned but at the end of the day it still leaves a painful impression which led to me finally deciding to do something about this matter.  

Starting 2011 I consciously tried to eat healthier (with emphasis on try) and consistently had thoughts of starting some sort of exercise in the back of my head but being the perennial lazy ass I never really did anything about it and before I would know it I would find myself in the queue at the McDonalds or the KFC or ordering some sort of takeout pizza. 5 months down the line and still not really having done anything about my predicament I heard that some people at work was thinking of starting a Biggest Loser contest with a pretty decent cash prize for the winner. Luckily with me also being the perennial poor ass, I saw this opportunity as the great motivator I was always waiting for. (Who knew money has this amazing property?) Knowing that SureSlim worked for me in the past I thought that if I simply followed my old program again I would stand a very good chance! 

Anyway, the competition kicked off on the first with me realising my worst fears, embarrassingly I weighed too much for the 150kg max capacity electronic scale which tried valiantly to give a reading but all it could muster was an error message. At least they could take my measurements which were:
  • Chest 137cm
  • Waist 152cm
  • Hips 165cm
These figures may not be the most accurate though since it was taken by a less than eager male colleague who didn’t seem too enthusiastic about measuring a fat dude but at least it’s something to work with. Obviously to make things fair for everyone competing I had to get myself weighed accurately as soon as possible. Having had SureSlim on my mind from the beginning I phoned and made an appointment to go see them on the 4th of June. To make a long story short I went there simply to abuse their industrial scale but after talking to them they made me a great offer I simply couldn’t refuse … so I joined up again for 6 months which at least allows me to go weigh myself every week (which I feel is important in the beginning to keep you motivated when you see that your suffering during the week was actually worth it) and it gives me a support base should I need it. 

The big question everyone is probably asking is “So how much did you weigh?” Well the embarrassing answer is 186.2kg … I’ll even repeat that ridiculous number (and make it bold and a ridiculously zany colour and for good measure a decent font size as a reminder of my humiliation and to say to myself … NEVER AGAIN!!!)

th tomorrow I can happily say that after 2 weeks of rigorously following the program (at least mostly) I had my first weigh in last week and I’ve already lost 5.3 kilos (i.e. weight = 180.9kg after Week 1) and that I’m due for my second weigh in tomorrow. Hopefully I’ll see a similar result so here’s holding thumbs! 


If you’ve read this far first of all congratulations and thank you, not many people would have. Since you already know basically everything about me why not join me in my weight loss journey? I’ll try my utmost to update you at least once a week on my progress, share with you know what’s working for me (or what’s not) and give general tips and hints on weight loss as I stumble upon them during my own research. Please don’t hesitate to leave a comment or if you know of any helpful or inspirational websites please let me know so that I can share it with everyone else.     
Many thanks and see you all next week! 

* I’ll try to keep swearing to the bare minimum but sometimes in life things just needs to be said ... if you can’t live with the odd expletive being uttered … Eish, I don’t know???