Raccoon vs the body mass index (I won!!!)

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Raccoon vs the body mass index (I won!!!)

Post by Raccoon » Mon Mar 28, 2011 5:57 pm

Yes, I know that the body mass index isn't perfect and works poorly on people with a lot of muscle, etc. I don't have that excuse, so I think BMI tends to work about right for me.

My BMI has gone from 17.2 (underweight) when I was 17 to 21.5 (squarely in the normal range) when I was in law school to 23.7-24.4 (high end of normal) post-law school. I've decided to embark on a program of getting back to the 21.5-22.0 range. After three months of fairly regular exercise, I've cut my BMI down to 23.0.

Because public humiliation (in the form of failure) tends to be a fairly effective motivator, I will post weekly updates here, and you all can cheer me on or laugh Nelson-style ("har har") depending on how I do.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Bors » Mon Mar 28, 2011 6:43 pm

Good luck! I keep losing weight, but it always finds me again. :)
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Creelie » Mon Mar 28, 2011 7:09 pm

Good on you! I'm hard at work on a "diet" myself - it mainly involves exercising every day and eating a fuckton of vegetables while throttling starch and sugar*. My knees and back are definitely thanking me - I know it's time to clean up my act when they start to ache.

(*anyone following my iron thread need not worry that I am starving myself into anemia. The blood test was done before I started any of this, and I actually get more meat when I'm watching what I eat. Left to my own devices I pretty much live on pasta, bread and ice cream.)

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by bennieloohoo » Mon Mar 28, 2011 7:22 pm

That's awesome, Raccoon! Best of luck, and we'll all be rooting for you. :D

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Mon Mar 28, 2011 8:05 pm

Thanks!

Just to be candid, I'm not a particularly disciplined eater. Fortunately, my eating habits have improved significantly since I got married, but I'm not going out of way to diet. (I have, however, mostly stopped eating cheeseburgers, yummy as they are; lunch is usually a turkey sandwich or soup and pasta salad.) Mrs. Raccoon has pointed out to me that if I really want to drop pounds, I should also cut down on my caloric intake. I suppose this means I care more about getting into shape than I do about losing weight.

Speaking of Mrs. Raccoon, she has an absurdly desirable BMI (20.7) but has nevertheless forbidden me from approaching N pounds of her weight, which sets a hard limit for how low I can get my BMI.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by NardoLoopa » Mon Mar 28, 2011 8:54 pm

There's a healthy amount of research from behavioral-economists that if you really want to lose weight, put some money on the line.

You put a not-insignificant amount of money in escrow wagering that you will meet your commitment. Should you fail, the money goes to your charity of choice / opposing political party.

The amount of the wager is usually a good reflection of how committed you really are to losing weight in the first place. Loss-aversion does the rest.

In any case, good luck. Mrs. Loopa is a devote of WW, having earned her lifelong membership a few years ago. Every time the weight goes up, it's because she's no longer counting points. When she does, it always works -- though slowly as designed. A friend lost 140lbs on WW and kept 120lbs of it off.

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by stupac2 » Mon Mar 28, 2011 8:55 pm

Obligatory

Personally I think it's far more important to increase exercise vs decrease calories. You can change your exercise habits, you can't really change your eating habits. At least I can't.

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Ringwraith » Tue Mar 29, 2011 4:53 am

stupac2 wrote:Obligatory
Ahahahahahahah!

Anyhoo, it's great that you're taking an active step into getting healthier and reaching a specific BMI. Best of luck :)

I put on nearly 15(!!!!)kg after I left high school >.> I've only managed to lose 6ish or so, and even then it fluctuates every now and then. Maybe following your journey towards a rad bod will remind me to stay away from the evil, evil snack machine that is my demise!

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Snaelda » Tue Mar 29, 2011 5:18 am

I started going to the gym roughly a year ago. I see a personal trainer once every 2 weeks and go in myself in between those sessions.

My BMI is still pretty high (28, down from 28.7) and I've "only" lost around 2kg (4.4ish pounds) in a full year of activity now (Ive been eating generally somewhat more healthily but I don't go on diets of any sort, I don't like making any changes bigger than what I think I could sustain for the foreseeable future)

However my shape has changed a lot, I've pretty much dropped a clothes size. Clothes also look better on me and I'm much fitter and stronger than before and feeling better. I can now do 15 pushups in a row (proper ones from the toes not the knee ones) and yesterday I jogged 2 miles and then held pilates planks for 1 minute, rest, another minute, rest, 45 seconds (ok I had been intending to go another minute but sort of collapsed down, heh..)

Before I started I could only barely manage 8 pushups from my knees and around 20sec of a plank.

Anyway my point is that weight and BMI isn't everything but judging how you feel and what you can do is much more important really. Also how to put it, according to BMI, I am very overweight and borderline clinically obese. I know I'm not (and have never been) skinny but I am in no way obese.

Anyway, good luck with your new and improved exercise regimen and keep us updated on how it goes :)
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Bors » Tue Mar 29, 2011 7:30 am

Since people are starting to talk more about diets let me tell you guys a good way to 'diet'. Keep a food journal. This can be done either with a pen and paper or on your smart phone. Android has a good app called myfitnesspal and iphone has a good one called Lose it! It will give you a good idea of how healthy your diet is and where it can be improved. Studies have shown that having to write down what you eat will not only make you aware of how many calories are in the meal/snack/drink but it also makes you accountable.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Tue Mar 29, 2011 9:26 am

I'm in the same camp as Stu that it's much easier for me to increase my exercise level than it is to restrict my calories. That said, this new California law that requires fast food places to list the calories for their menu options is super-effective! I was down in L.A. to help my dad out last week, and while I was at the airport, I was about to get something from Burger King, until I saw that virtually everything was 900-1100 calories!!! :shock:

That was a pretty effective deterrent, and I ended up getting a turkey sandwich from CPK. (520 calories, but a ridiculous 83% of the day's sodium allotment.)
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Suendenbock » Tue Mar 29, 2011 5:11 pm

Last year I got a job for the first time and starting earning my own money. Terrible idea for me. I stopped working out and doing jujitsu, and instead worked more. Keep in mind I am student. Now what this lead to was me eating the same as before, while at the same time making my money and being able to eat whatever i want. This lead to me eating out, subway and fast food a lot more frequently while i spend less time eating at my own house and preparing my own meals. This of course had horrible results, within the last year I put on about 15-20 pounds. Now I started working out again last fall but that didn't really do much for me, helped me maintain my weight build back muscle mass but didn't help with actually getting rid of the fat that I accumulated. Now I am at about 205 lb. and 6'1. That puts my BMI at 27 and in the overweight category. Now I lost about 5 pounds through cardio and lifting weights while also increasing muscle mass. I have been pretty happy about that and I am glad to see that other people are trying to do the same. Sadly I have the typical european bodyshape and all my fat is around my stomach less so my arms legs and face. So i look forward to seeing how everyone else is doing and hopefully being able to add in some of my own success and stories =)

-edit- i like bors idea

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by unwieldy locutions » Tue Mar 29, 2011 5:50 pm

Bors wrote:Since people are starting to talk more about diets let me tell you guys a good way to 'diet'. Keep a food journal. This can be done either with a pen and paper or on your smart phone. Android has a good app called myfitnesspal and iphone has a good one called Lose it! It will give you a good idea of how healthy your diet is and where it can be improved. Studies have shown that having to write down what you eat will not only make you aware of how many calories are in the meal/snack/drink but it also makes you accountable.

I think is by far the most superb dietary plan. The accountability is everything. It's easy torget a bite of someone else's food (or two). There can be a big difference between thinking you're eating 1200 calories a day and actually eating 1200 calories per day.

I am awful at maintaining an exercise plan. Weight loss, simplistically, is more calories spent than consumed. Journals, proper exercise, planned diets are all really toward that simple goal.

Anecdotally, I've heard of more long-term success from a combination of food journal and exercise than anything else.

In any event, godspeed.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Manendra » Tue Mar 29, 2011 8:39 pm

It's fairly easy to cut calories if you do it in a sneakier way than just eating salads for every meal. For example, I don't snack. At work, the only food I have at my desk is a few Clif bars in my briefcase, and those are mostly for breakfast when I don't have time for anything else. Cutting soda mostly or completely helps as well (or switch to diet, if you like the taste of aspartame, which I loathe). For various reasons, both health-related and hippyness-related, I try to limit myself to one meal per day that includes meat. I also try to eat almost exclusively chicken/turkey. I save the much fattier (and higher carbon footprint) beef for special occasions (or Chipotle) and pork falls somewhere in between for both healthiness and amount eaten.

Now if I could only cut back on the beer, I would be set. But cutting calories doesn't need to be horribly painful. Small cuts can add up. Also, there's a little known clause of the hated PPACA that requires all restaurants with x (20? 30?) or more franchises to post calories on their menus. The intention is to change behavior slightly in the way you described. It will also ideally cause restaurants to be more cognizant of calorie counts and work to reduce them.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Tue Mar 29, 2011 9:30 pm

Manendra wrote:Also, there's a little known clause of the hated PPACA that requires all restaurants with x (20? 30?) or more franchises to post calories on their menus. The intention is to change behavior slightly in the way you described. It will also ideally cause restaurants to be more cognizant of calorie counts and work to reduce them.
Yes, I think this is modeled after the California law, which, as I've noted above, has been IMMENSELY effective during the times I've visited SoCal lately.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Creelie » Tue Mar 29, 2011 9:51 pm

Bors wrote:Since people are starting to talk more about diets let me tell you guys a good way to 'diet'. Keep a food journal. This can be done either with a pen and paper or on your smart phone. Android has a good app called myfitnesspal and iphone has a good one called Lose it! It will give you a good idea of how healthy your diet is and where it can be improved. Studies have shown that having to write down what you eat will not only make you aware of how many calories are in the meal/snack/drink but it also makes you accountable.

Agreed. I have kept food journals several times in the last few years and always found them helpful.

Counting every calorie is not sustainable long-term, but it is a priceless consciousness-raising exercise. The problem with it is that all the fresh/whole foods are the hardest to quantify, creating a temptation to choose something processed and packaged with a label because it's easier to log. However, strict counting for a few weeks really opens your eyes to how much we overeat as a society; I found myself wondering why more people aren't FATTER. After several months I developed an intuitive sense of the caloric values of many foods - I could look at them and classify them as "disaster", "proceed with caution", or "all clear".

As a maintenance thing I like to count food group portions. Good awareness and accountability for less effort. Just the act of thinking about my log often helps me resist junk food entirely.

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by NardoLoopa » Wed Mar 30, 2011 6:50 am

Creelie wrote:Counting every calorie is not sustainable long-term, but it is a priceless consciousness-raising exercise. The problem with it is that all the fresh/whole foods are the hardest to quantify, creating a temptation to choose something processed and packaged with a label because it's easier to log.
You guys realize you're basically talking about the Weight Watchers system, right? Except instead of just raw calories, they factor in fat and fiber to better quantify the food. And the "point" system is just short-hand for calories (fat/fiber) with common values for common foods. The journal along with a sensible budget is what it gives you.

In short, it's a proven method. If you'd like some structure, or help with the sensible calorie counting, it might be best to use their reference book and their method.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by JennyUnderpants » Wed Mar 30, 2011 8:20 am

Obligatory
HAHA. It's funny because it's true. :cry:

I gained 20 pounds out of college because I went from playing volleyball 4 times a week and every intramural sport I could get my hands on to sitting at my desk eating Popeye's. Oh my god, that just sounds disgusting. Anyway. I have heard that the reason Weight Watchers so successful is that it's not a prescribed or gimmicky diet but a change in your psychology/lifestyle. I had great results until I got pregnant. And then while nursing, I couldn't keep the weight off because as soon as I tried to exercise and lose weight, my milk supply would tank. When I weaned my youngest, 15 pounds just fell off because I still had some of that WW mentality. Also because I wasn't voraciously consuming fatty fatty calories with reckless abandon in order to feed a chubby baby.

Good luck, Raccoon! To your health <3
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Wed Mar 30, 2011 1:27 pm

22.8!

Of course, there's normal day-to-day fluctuation, so I may well go back to 23.0 tomorrow, but still . . . I haven't seen this side of 160 lbs (i.e., below it) in about 13 years or more!

Also re calorie counting/food portion size/food journal: I don't disagree that calorie watching can be an effective way to lose weight. I just happen to like seeing the fitness improvement that comes with regular sustained exercise -- running the same distance as before but faster, or running the same speed as before but farther . . . hey, I guess it's kind of like speed ascension or something.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Manendra » Wed Mar 30, 2011 5:24 pm

Raccoon wrote:
Manendra wrote:Also, there's a little known clause of the hated PPACA that requires all restaurants with x (20? 30?) or more franchises to post calories on their menus. The intention is to change behavior slightly in the way you described. It will also ideally cause restaurants to be more cognizant of calorie counts and work to reduce them.
Yes, I think this is modeled after the California law, which, as I've noted above, has been IMMENSELY effective during the times I've visited SoCal lately.
NYC has also had a similar law on the books for quite some time. I remember my brother being devastated when we went to a Dunkin Donuts in Manhattan several years ago and he saw how many calories were in his "reduced fat blueberry muffin." :P
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by thacon » Wed Mar 30, 2011 6:33 pm

Yeah, it can be a little unsettling seeing those calorie counts. It works wonders though. I'm far less likely to impulse buy that cupcake or cookie when I see that it has half my day's calories in it. It's also entertaining to see how often the salad options are as bad or worse than other food options.

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by transplanted_entwife » Wed Mar 30, 2011 8:23 pm

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ZvOqYVs2ao

'nuff said about how "healthy" salads are =P
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Eigenbasis » Wed Mar 30, 2011 8:34 pm

Balsamic vinegar is tasty and has very few calories. I like a salad with just a touch of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, cracked pepper, and maybe some salt.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by transplanted_entwife » Wed Mar 30, 2011 10:33 pm

Eigenbasis wrote:Balsamic vinegar is tasty and has very few calories. I like a salad with just a touch of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, cracked pepper, and maybe some salt.
I definitely agree... there are times that I skip even that, if the ingredients are of a high-enough quality (i.e. not iceberg lettuce-blech).

I KNOW how to eat healthy... I need to actually DO it.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Antipasta » Thu Mar 31, 2011 6:19 am

Raccoon wrote:22.8!
Back when I was racing bicycles and aiming for very, very lean, I put a big chalkboard up on my wall at work. I graphed my weekly weight and body fat measurement, vs. my targets, and it worked amazingly well. Both of them took dead straight line runs at the target, then stayed there the rest of the season.

Anyway, I know nothing about diets, but public oversight can be great!

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by lotsofphil » Mon Apr 04, 2011 7:33 am

I am inclined to add a tally mark to the "increase exercise" part. The flip side is that when you stop exercising in copious amounts you've likely developed some bad eating habits. I still miss my post-run candy run :)

Good luck, raccoon, and stay away from my garbage cans!

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Thu Apr 07, 2011 12:17 am

Back to 22.8, after a slight rise to 23.2 earlier in the week.

I'm up to burning 700+ calories for the cardio workouts, which is pretty cool except it takes 50+ minutes!
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Fri Apr 08, 2011 3:06 pm

Another day of 22.8 -- at least I'm consolidating the progress. Also, today was pretty satisfying, as I managed to run 4 miles at a 9:13 pace, which is double the distance that I'd previously gone at that speed. I followed up with another mile of interval training.

This is one reason I am in the "increase calorie burn" camp, as opposed to the "eat fewer calories" camp. I like seeing tangible improvement in fitness, as measured by faster and/or longer runs.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by NardoLoopa » Fri Apr 08, 2011 5:17 pm

I tend to adjust my eating to what should be proper post-college levels to hit BMI goals and then use exercise as an accelerator. It gives me a very nice incentive for exercising and doesn't screw me over when will flags because it was just bonus calories anyway -- the diet is keeping the pace.

And by diet I don't mean extreme calorie restriction -- just being sensible; you can rip whole milk from my cold dead kungfu grip.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Sat Apr 09, 2011 1:43 am

My son picked Chevy's for his birthday dinner. I noticed that it had redesigned its menu . . . to include the calorie counts for all of the meals(!).

That was pretty horrifying (and I can only imagine what things would've looked like if the sodium content had been listed as well). I went with what I normally do -- fish tacos -- but instead of cleaning my plate (and then maybe some of Mrs. Raccoon's), I finished the tacos and rice but left most of the beans (which were absurdly salty).

Oh, of course, I had ice cream cake, but unlike everyone else, I didn't have seconds.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Wed Apr 13, 2011 2:19 pm

22.7! A new 13-year low weight/BMI for me!

It's all the more gratifying considering that I had an unfortunate but extremely tasty encounter with a seafood brunch buffet over the weekend that temporarily drove me back to 23.0.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Creelie » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:13 pm

Raccoon wrote:I had an unfortunate but extremely tasty encounter with a seafood brunch buffet over the weekend that temporarily drove me back to 23.0.
This is the main reason I try to hold back from weighing myself every day - same time and conditions every week or so is more mentally healthy for me.

Keep fighting the good fight, Raccoon! I thought of you today as I bought shiny, cushy new running shoes and a sports bra that just might stop a bullet.

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:32 pm

Creelie wrote:This is the main reason I try to hold back from weighing myself every day - same time and conditions every week or so is more mentally healthy for me.
Oh, but I was so disappointed with the BMI increase that I redoubled my efforts the next few days. . . .

EDIT: Oh, and Mrs. Raccoon has informed me that I am not to get below 155 pounds (BMI = 22.2), which is 3 pounds away. I suppose that means, yea, BMI goal should be attainable within 5 weeks or less!
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Wed Apr 20, 2011 1:13 am

Back up to 22.8 for now. My son's birthday party was this past weekend, and I overate at dim sum the next day (hadn't had it for a while. . . .) That was manageable, but I was having some mild shooting pain in one of my legs, so I took things easy the last few days. I tried using the elliptical machine, but for some reason, it felt really weird and also much less efficient than the treadmill.

However, my leg feels almost 100%, so I think I can go back to my usual routine tomorrow.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Mon Apr 25, 2011 1:14 pm

22.5!! (157 lbs)
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Wed Apr 27, 2011 3:01 pm

22.4 (156 lbs). . . . That was unexpectedly quick, though of course it'll take some time to stabilize.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by thacon » Wed Apr 27, 2011 3:03 pm

Yay, Raccoon!

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Thu May 05, 2011 6:02 pm

Still at 22.4, which is pretty good considering that I was down in SoCal for 6 days to help my dad out, and I ended up eating out every lunch and dinner . . . .

And now it's game on, as one of my colleagues has been inspired as well. His BMI is 22.5 and he's aiming for 22.0. Yet a third colleague is also possibly now gunning to drop from 25.0 to 23.8. She wants to wager something on it.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by NardoLoopa » Thu May 05, 2011 7:53 pm

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by zombiepops » Thu May 05, 2011 9:55 pm

Raccoon wrote:Still at 22.4, which is pretty good considering that I was down in SoCal for 6 days to help my dad out, and I ended up eating out every lunch and dinner . . . .

And now it's game on, as one of my colleagues has been inspired as well. His BMI is 22.5 and he's aiming for 22.0. Yet a third colleague is also possibly now gunning to drop from 25.0 to 23.8. She wants to wager something on it.
It's not just your colleagues, because of this thread I've decided to try and drop 40 pounds by Christmas. 2 pounds down, 38 to go!
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Thu May 05, 2011 11:57 pm

The colleague who wants to wager something pointed me to Lose It!, which is an iTouch app but also has an Internet website. It acts as a food journal and exercise logging tool, and will adjust your daily calorie allotment to hit your desired weight on a desired date.

It's gratifying to see, for example, that after breakfast and lunch, I was at a net +80 calories for the day, since my workout burned off 700+ calories. That meant I could eat over 1900 calories for dinner(!).

Anyway, Lose It! predicts that at 2000 calories per day, I can hit 150 lbs by June 17. We'll see.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by zombiepops » Fri May 06, 2011 8:00 am

Raccoon wrote:The colleague who wants to wager something pointed me to Lose It!, which is an iTouch app but also has an Internet website. It acts as a food journal and exercise logging tool, and will adjust your daily calorie allotment to hit your desired weight on a desired date.

It's gratifying to see, for example, that after breakfast and lunch, I was at a net +80 calories for the day, since my workout burned off 700+ calories. That meant I could eat over 1900 calories for dinner(!).

Anyway, Lose It! predicts that at 2000 calories per day, I can hit 150 lbs by June 17. We'll see.
my fitness pal has an android app and website that's probably the same sort of thing. I've been using it and it's pretty good. I just need to get more diligent about logging food in it.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Sun May 08, 2011 6:38 pm

22.2 today (or 155 lbs)!

I think Mrs. Raccoon is relenting on 155 as the minimum weight for me, so 21.5 BMI/150 lbs remains the ultimate goal. Also, I bought one of those ab wheel thingies . . . man, it kills the abdominal muscles! I think I did two sets of 5 on Friday, and my stomach is still sore.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Fri May 13, 2011 1:00 pm

22.0!

This is the high end of my original goal, so I suppose I've made it, kind of. Unfortunately, I'm not positive, but I think I may be showing some minor symptoms of exercise addiction -- I didn't get to work out yesterday for a variety of reasons, and I felt kind of guilty about it. And today we're having an eco-friendly anti-pest spray treatment, with the window from 11 am to 1 pm. To be able to fit in a long enough workout and get back in time to meet the sprayer, I rushed my little son out of the house to daycare earlier than I normally would have by about 20-30 minutes. (I did feel less guilty about that when I saw that I got him there in time for morning snack, which he normally doesn't like, but today it was canteloupe slices and toast, so he was quite happy.)
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by lotsofphil » Fri May 13, 2011 1:04 pm

Good job raccoon.

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by thacon » Fri May 13, 2011 8:38 pm

Great job!

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Tue May 17, 2011 4:09 pm

Wow, after a few days of regressing back to 155 lbs, I saw the scale read . . . 153 lbs today! By the way, I mistakenly posted that 154 lbs was a BMI of 22.0 for me, but actually, it was 22.1. It's 153 lbs that equals 22.0.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Fri May 20, 2011 1:40 pm

The scale read 152 lbs today (BMI 21.8)!
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Wed May 25, 2011 2:13 pm

Today the scale flickered back and forth between 151 and 152 before settling on the latter. Damn.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Manendra » Wed May 25, 2011 8:01 pm

Raccoon wrote:22.0!

This is the high end of my original goal, so I suppose I've made it, kind of. Unfortunately, I'm not positive, but I think I may be showing some minor symptoms of exercise addiction -- I didn't get to work out yesterday for a variety of reasons, and I felt kind of guilty about it. And today we're having an eco-friendly anti-pest spray treatment, with the window from 11 am to 1 pm. To be able to fit in a long enough workout and get back in time to meet the sprayer, I rushed my little son out of the house to daycare earlier than I normally would have by about 20-30 minutes. (I did feel less guilty about that when I saw that I got him there in time for morning snack, which he normally doesn't like, but today it was canteloupe slices and toast, so he was quite happy.)
I think that's kind of a good thing. I get the same thing when I'm in a good routine with working out. But it's so hard to get back into the routine if its broken that being very motivated to stay in it is good. I'm trying to get back into it now, after a bout of travel, mono, and Minnesota Craft Beer Week. >.>
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Thu May 26, 2011 12:20 am

Manendra wrote:
Raccoon wrote:. . . minor symptoms of exercise addiction . . .
I think that's kind of a good thing. I get the same thing when I'm in a good routine with working out. But it's so hard to get back into the routine if its broken that being very motivated to stay in it is good. I'm trying to get back into it now, after a bout of travel, mono, and Minnesota Craft Beer Week. >.>
Um, yeah, I guess so.

The wife of a good friend of mine decided to get back to her high school weight or something crazy like that, overtrained, and is now on crutches due to a stress fracture in her hip. . . .

But I have set some new short- and medium-term training (i.e., non-weight-related) goals for myself: 3 miles in 24 minutes, 2 miles in 14 minutes, and 1 mile in 6 minutes.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Tue May 31, 2011 1:55 pm

21.7 (151 lbs) today, after a really satisfying workout -- walked a mile to warm up, then ran 2 miles in 8:13 each, finished a 3d mile in 8:00, then walked a mile to recover, and ended with a mile in 8:25.

For some reason, last week I jumped from 152 to 153/154 even though I hadn't exceeded my calorie budget in any day. It left me quite demoralized. . . . Yes, I'm obsessive.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Eigenbasis » Tue May 31, 2011 2:56 pm

Those sorts of fluctuations are normal based on when you last ate, drank, and pooped. I don't weigh myself like that because then I'd just obsess over nothing.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by stupac2 » Tue May 31, 2011 3:01 pm

Eigenbasis wrote:Those sorts of fluctuations are normal based on when you last ate, drank, and pooped. I don't weigh myself like that because then I'd just obsess over nothing.
Yeah, my first thought was "daily weighing? that sounds like it's basically 'when was my last poop?'"

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Raccoon » Tue May 31, 2011 3:04 pm

Eigenbasis wrote:Those sorts of fluctuations are normal based on when you last ate, drank, and pooped. I don't weigh myself like that because then I'd just obsess over nothing.
I weigh myself around the same time so as to minimize those fluctuations.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by Eigenbasis » Tue May 31, 2011 4:42 pm

But do you always poop at the same time?

...don't answer that question.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by NardoLoopa » Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:29 am

I got down to my Highschool weight 3 years ago. Had people telling me I looked gaunt (which is also dead-center BMI for 'normal' -- which is kinda scary) Felt pretty good, though. Now I'm my year out of college weight (still 'normal', but the high end).

I never weight lift, but because of this thread I've been trying it a few times -- even had that "I need to go workout" feeling. I can see the appeal. It's just so boring.

1mile in 6min. Yeah, that would be nice to hit again.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index

Post by lotsofphil » Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:54 am

I had a dream about running last night. Damn foot!

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index (I won!!!)

Post by Raccoon » Tue Jun 07, 2011 1:28 pm

Today, the scale read . . . 150 lbs!!!! That's a BMI of 21.5, and I now weigh what I weighed 18 years ago!

Thanks to everyone who chimed in on the thread with suggestions, encouragement, or just plain bemusement for my efforts. It was definitely part of my total motivation.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index (I won!!!)

Post by bennieloohoo » Tue Jun 07, 2011 1:36 pm

Huge congrats!!!!! :thumbs: :thumbs: :thumbs: :thumbs: :thumbs:

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index (I won!!!)

Post by lotsofphil » Tue Jun 07, 2011 3:37 pm

My mental image of raccoon as the scottish guy in Austin Powers is now *completely* gone :(

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index (I won!!!)

Post by FufuBunnySlayer » Tue Jun 07, 2011 11:39 pm

Grats, Raccoon! Now the toughest part, sticking with your routine to maintain your current weight! :-D
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index (I won!!!)

Post by Raccoon » Wed Jun 08, 2011 12:39 am

FufuBunnySlayer wrote:Grats, Raccoon! Now the toughest part, sticking with your routine to maintain your current weight! :-D
Oh, no worries -- I've become kind of obsessed now with training for short/medium distance running speed.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index (I won!!!)

Post by Raccoon » Mon Jun 13, 2011 1:50 pm

Despite a short weekend getaway to the coast, which of course involved yummy seafood and salt water taffy, I hit 149 today!
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index (I won!!!)

Post by Verdigris97 » Mon Jun 13, 2011 2:38 pm

Raccoon wrote:Despite a short weekend getaway to the coast, which of course involved yummy seafood and salt water taffy, I hit 149 today!
Congratulations, Raccoon! It sounds like you've made the breakthrough to that mythical land called "lifestyle change." I will be thinking of you as I try to find it over the next indeterminate period of time...

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index (I won!!!)

Post by Raccoon » Tue Jun 21, 2011 1:35 am

Things are taking a sort of funny turn . . . .

I've hit 148 the last couple of post-workout weighings, and in fact, this morning I was at 150 in the morning when I woke up. While dressed, which means I was more like 149.

The other night, Mrs. Raccoon asked me, somewhat suspiciously, how much I weighed. At the time, I was able to answer truthfully "151 lbs in the morning," but if she asks again, I won't be able to repeat that answer. I think she will order me to start gaining weight if this keeps up.

I should note that I have been using the weight machines in the gym as part of my fitness routine. I prefer the hard cardio workouts, but I recognize the need to incorporate resistance training.

I also wonder if I have a touch of body dysmorphic disorder. I mean, not really, because I don't avoid people, etc., and I don't stare at myself excessively in the mirror. But even though I've dropped 20 lbs and hit the goal that I set for myself (exceeded it, even), I find myself still wanting to run off the last bit of flab around my stomach. And thinking, 5'10" and 150 lbs is fine but 145 lbs would be better, no?
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index (I won!!!)

Post by NardoLoopa » Tue Jun 21, 2011 6:42 am

Hence the problem of "thin" as a goal instead of "healthy". Unfortunately, for goal oriented people maintaining something doesn't fit a satisfying structure, while continuing to watch numbers go down does.

And this is the general problem with 'successful' weight-loss: trying to maintain the weight. Losing it is actually pretty easy in comparison. This is also why Weight Watchers has the right idea (and also sets lower limits for your weight); the 'diet' to maintain a weight is the same as the diet to get to the goal weight; when you 'win' you just keep doing the same thing.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index (I won!!!)

Post by Snaelda » Tue Jun 21, 2011 8:24 am

My approach is basically to only do "watch your diet" related decisions that I'd be genuinely happy to carry out for the rest of my life. Over a full year I've dropped 7lbs so not a lot really, but I don't feel like I'm making a sacrifice or constantly watching myself etc. or feeling like I'm on a diet or anything like that so I have no doubt that it'll stay off because I feel no need to get back to where I was a year ago lifestyle wise.

I feel a lot better now, stronger and more confident and I have pretty much dropped a dress size which is kind of nice. I'm also doing pilates now (in addition to the gym) with a great teacher and the posture differences and better core muscle tone and control that comes from that is also really helpful and makes my back and shoulders etc. feel overall so much better even though I'm still stuck at a desk most of the time.

Being aware that you need to watch yourself re: wanting to get even thinner etc is a good thing though, if you thought there wasn't an issue at all that would be more alarming. If you find yourself wanting to lie to your partner though that's a huge red ringing giant alarm bell.

I have to say though that I have a really hard time knowing what I look like. It sounds silly but basically I don't know how "fat" or "fit" I look. I can look in the mirror but it somehow doesn't really tell me anything much.

Like in the last year I don't actually feel like I've physically changed that much, I pretty much look the same way to me but I do feel healthier so I'm definitely carrying on. However I've gotten a ton of compliments from people I know, and some I hadn't seen for a while and who didn't know I was making a bit of an effort. It made me feel really weird because as I mentioned earlier the scale has just gone down around 7lbs and I don't feel I've changed that much from a what do I look like point of view. So was I grossly wrong about what I thought I looked like before? or is my view a bit distorted now? I have no idea.

btw I'm 5'6" and 171lbs now, was around 178lbs a year ago, so it's not as if it's a huge % change in weight either, which 7lbs could be if I were at the lower end of the scale. I'm lucky in that I'm very hourglass built so I carry the weight pretty well (think a slightly heavier Joan in MadMen 8-) )

Sorry for a rather rambly and long post but I've been thinking about these kind of things a fair bit in the last few days.

ETA: Hah, realised I have a post earlier in this thread when it was 4.4lbs, end of march so it's been another 2.6lbs in the months since then

ETA the 2nd: You should be aware that overtraining cardio can actually make you start gaining weight a little bit if you're already trim. Your body goes into a slight "crisis mode" metabolism because it's under so much strain

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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index (I won!!!)

Post by Raccoon » Tue Jun 21, 2011 2:54 pm

NardoLoopa wrote:Hence the problem of "thin" as a goal instead of "healthy". Unfortunately, for goal oriented people maintaining something doesn't fit a satisfying structure, while continuing to watch numbers go down does.
Yeah, I didn't explain myself very well in my previous post.

I think I've finally accepted the fact that running is probably the most accessible competitive sport now that I'm in my early 40s, and I'm shifting my mindset from losing weight (for its own sake) to improving my short/intermediate distance run times. That's still seeing numbers go down!

This is kind of like perming skills in KoL to ascend faster, except here there's really only one skill, or maybe two, that are kind of like the slime gland skills -- i.e., with essentially infinite levels. The skills are Increased Endurance and maybe Improved Mental Concentration. So it's like the pre-revamp ascension/skill ratrace: more running improves your running.

To keep training, however, is likely to drive my weight down to the 140-45 lb range unless I eat something like 3000+ calories a day (or at least on training days). Since I've spent the past few months breaking bad eating habits and getting accustomed to eating <2200 calories/day (most days), I'd really rather not risk reacquiring those bad habits.
Snaelda wrote:I don't feel like I'm making a sacrifice or constantly watching myself etc. or feeling like I'm on a diet or anything like that so I have no doubt that it'll stay off because I feel no need to get back to where I was a year ago lifestyle wise.

I feel a lot better now, stronger and more confident and I have pretty much dropped a dress size which is kind of nice. I'm also doing pilates now (in addition to the gym) with a great teacher and the posture differences and better core muscle tone and control that comes from that is also really helpful and makes my back and shoulders etc. feel overall so much better even though I'm still stuck at a desk most of the time.

***

ETA the 2nd: You should be aware that overtraining cardio can actually make you start gaining weight a little bit if you're already trim. Your body goes into a slight "crisis mode" metabolism because it's under so much strain.
I haven't felt at all like I'm starving myself. I've made two main adjustments to my eating (1) I no longer act as a human vaccuum cleaner at dinner; leaving stuff for leftovers is fine; and (2) I cut out *unnecessary* nighttime snacking for its own sake.

I don't think I'm anywhere near overtraining/undereating. My actual caloric intake has been mostly 1800-2200 calories a day, and my net calories have never been below 1400, and have usually been 1700-1900. Also, I'm not training for a marathon or anything. I put in at least one rest day a week, and I vary what I do so that it's not all straight running. The most I *run* straight on any given day is about 4 miles, though with warmup walking and cooldown, I tend to cover about 5-6 miles on the straight cardio workout days.
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Re: Raccoon vs the body mass index (I won!!!)

Post by NardoLoopa » Tue Jun 21, 2011 3:35 pm

As I'm nearly in the same position regarding age/running/BMI, I can completely relate. I did an off-the-couch 3miler the other weekend for a wounded vets benefit. Thought nothing of it, even though I hadn't run in a few weeks due to prop work. Found out I'm just not as fit as I used to be 15 years ago (when I ran a half-marathon off the couch).

I like your running goals. Simple. Achievable.

I've been casually working the mill, but I need to structure the workout. Otherwise I end up running in spurts and training the hard way where every two weeks I'm starting from scratch again.

I also fell victim to the goal vs maintain problem when I hit the center point in BMI; people mentioned I looked pretty underweight. So I tried to put on 10lbs (5%). That was probably more difficult than taking it off. I kinda overshot by 15lbs.

Good luck to you.
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