Archive for the ‘fitness’ Category

calories consumed

January 22, 2009

I did not do the bike last weekend. I still haven’t. I did my working out besides that though. I have burned many calories working out last week and am starting well this week too. I swam more last week than any other week: 3.8 miles. Running too with 14.4 miles. Unfortunately I also tied my worst week of eating too many calories at about 17500. It is true my body burned a few more than that but my goal is to create a deficit from working out and eating, not just working out so that I lose weight faster.

At first I was willing to write it off as residual from the month off of everything, but I am still doing it this week. The bad part is I will be fine to eat this much once I am at my target weight but until I get there I need to eat less. So deep down I am telling myself to just lose the weight with extra exercise and not with eating less. But the eating needs to be under control or I will not keep the weight off. I need to be able to say ok I shall eat this today and then do it. Or ok, I can deviate as long as I make it up tomorrow and then carry through with the plan. The problem is I am not planning 100% and I deviate without ever making it up. I wind up with one good day out of every 4 with this lack of care. I will only lose a half pound a week at this pace and will not reach my goal until next winter. I got to get back to the plan on the food side of things.

Here are the best ways I can think of to help:

  1. Plan all my food at night after dinner for the next day from breakfast up to dinner, this way I can pack snacks and control what I eat. If I will be in the car for lunch (the two days I go running at lunchtime for example) then plan to take food that can be eaten cold in the car rather than stopping somewhere. (I actually ran 4 miles and then ate at taco bell!)
  2. Until I get a grip on the problem stop eating lunch in restaurants altogether. Or only eat preplanned meals like subway 6″ ham no mayo or oil and a bag of sun chips for 530 calories. All too often lately I just go for the spicy Italian or meatball and then what the heck just get the 12″ instead and while I think to myself I will save half so I can get the chips for now I wind up gobbling it all down anyway. What was planned to be under 600 calories on the way there turns out to be 1200 all said and done.
  3. Eat fresh fruits and vegetables with every meal and as every snack: carrots, apples, pears, and oranges. This makes the full feeling yet low calories from all the fiber.
  4. Plan meals in a way that I never eat a meal of more than 600 calories, then if I do find myself in a restaurant when I shouldn’t be I can eat 600 calories and then stop. Even if I only get one item from the menu. I have to be strong and think of how full I feel and how bad that feels for the rest of the afternoon to eat 1000 calories at lunch. I need to look at the restaurants that attract me and view the nutritional info online. Then if I am weak and I get there eating the proper meal is not guesswork. I ate a grilled stuffed burrito the other day and thought I was not doing too bad, but the thing was packed with calories. If I have in advance, while a clear head prevails, planned a meal that I like and know the calorie count I can just order that.
  5. I need to plan in the snack in the evening and it needs to include a filling element like raw carrots or broccoli and those calories need to be part of the overall plan. I have been planning to eat about 2200 calories a day with no late night snack and then I eat the snack and get to 2500. If I eat 400 and 500 for breakfast and lunch with  another 200 for two snacks then I can have 600 for dinner and the final snack of 300 gets me to 2200. This is a typical weekday and I can juggle the numbers around depending on what I feel like having. I shall shoot for more of the yogurt with fruit type of snack rather than the fiber one bar which feels more like a candy bar and has me wanting more the second I am finished.

Please post any other suggestions I am up to trying something new.


10k run and a 1.5k swim

January 18, 2009

OK so I did the run and swim part of an Olypic tri yesterday. This is more than I have ever run or swam all at once without stopping that I can remember anyway.

I thought of a new way to get a grip on my times as well. I found a race that had 113 entrants in my age group and so I can easily get the percentage rating assuming the 113 people are the average mix of runners one will find in a 10k run. I can then say I am in the top 50% or 45% and so on as I improve. This is much easier than saying something like I dropped my time from 59 minutes to 58.

So I ran 6.4 miles without stopping (this is slightly more than 10k but I did not recognize the turnaround point I had scouted out on google maps until I had passed it.) I did it in 1:02:26 and there was snow and ice in spots that slowed me down so I know I could get it 2 1/2 minutes lower if I had a clear path and no worries about footing. None the less this is a 9:45 minutes/mile pace. I am very pleased with this number in the conditions and will do 6.2 miles in the future when I run this distance to get an instant improvement of just a couple seconds short of 2 minutes. Another thing I did that will not happen in the future is helping a woman push her car. I stopped my time while I did it but I came upon some people pushing a car, I jumped on the back and pushed as I got to them and we took it another 100 feet and I was pushing hard as not to lose my momentum. Well I got back on my way and a quick glance at my heart rate monitor showed me I overdid it and I had jumped up to almost my 95% rate where I had been running closer to 85%. My legs felt a little jello-y after I got back to it but the feeling passed within a few minutes. I am almost certain I slowed my pace a bit here because of this. Not a big deal of course just making notes of what I can expect next time. Without any improvement at all I should hit 60 minutes. The 62:26 puts me in the 72nd percentile of the race in Hawaii that had 113 entrants of my age group. The 60 minutes I plan to get next time will put me at the 65th percentile. When I make it to a 9 minute mile for this distance that will put me at the 46th percentile. I have a best of 8:48 at 4 miles so 9 minutes should be a reasonable pace to expect once I get in more practice running the longer distances.

Once the run was finished I got to the pool and found I had to wait 15 minutes for the swim team to finish up. So I made a rather stupid mistake and waited in the hot tub. The pool is 81 degrees F and the hot tub 102 degrees F, a recipe for cramps. I got out of the hot tub and jumped in the pool which felt very cold. I just dipped under the water, afixed the goggles to my face and proceeded to bring myself pain. Every muscle in my arms felt sore and my legs were not doing to well either. I rested for 30 seconds after 100 and 200 yards, then again at 550, the plan was to go the whole way without stopping so I was dissappointed. But I started back up and got in a grove and did the last 1100 without stopping. The time including breaks was approximately 34 minutes.  I was most excited about going 1100 non-stop while feeling a bit crappy. If I can work through that on a training day I can work through about anything on race day. Another point to make was that my swimming pace is under 1 minute per lap (50 yards) even at the long distance. Yes it took 34 minutes but I was stopped for 2 of them. 1 minute per lap exactly with no stopping would be 33 minutes. This is exactly 3 times my sprint tri distance of 500 meters so my eventual goal for this length is the same as I worked so hard to reach, 10 minutes times 3. I need to do the swim first thing and warm up a bit before I start if I want a realistic shot at it.

There is little chance I will do 25 miles on my bike today. I am currently hoping to just get it set up and do something at all. We shall see if I make it or not. 

On the food side of things it was interesting to note that the calories I ate did not catch up with the calories I burned from exercise until dinner time. Unfortunately they were over the plan by a long shot from that point and I lost half of the work to excess food calories. This overdoing it and not eating enough early is a disaster when the cravings then take hold and all good intentions go out the window. I burned 1350 calories working out and ate an extra 800 (over my limit which is 500 over my plan so a total screwup of 1300 calories), I would have been better off eating normal and doing a light workout of 45 minutes on the treadmill as far as my weight loss goals are concerned.

Starting back up

January 15, 2009

I am back with a vengeance. I calculated some stats and am pleased with my progress toward changing my lifestyle. There are obvious problems as well, but doing good for 3 months and losing 21 pounds followed by one bad month where I gain just under 5 is a pattern that I can live with providing I start back on the 3 month portion again and learn from my 1 month mistake to maintain better rather than sliding backwards the next time I take some time off, maybe I can manage half off instead.


I went to an educational class given by an Olympic level specialist in periodization planning. She gave us the quick run down (just under 2 hours) on how to use periodization to plan how to peak for certain events. This got me on my kick again and I am now officially back to it. I ran 8 miles and swam 1.5 miles counting today and yesterday. I admit I am sore though. I got a good dozen miles on the bike tomorrow morning and then another mile and a half in the pool followed by a day off. I will then hit it hard Saturday swimming and running followed Sunday with my bike on my new indoor trainer still sitting in the box.


If I stick to the plan this week it will be about 5000 calories burned in the week. The best level so far has been 4900 followed by 4200 and the rest down in the 3000’s so this is a substantial increase and should wipe out the extra pounds I added very quickly, if I can eat well like I have been this week.