Monday, January 16, 2006

Public Disclosure

OK friends and fellow bloggers, this is one of these things that if I don't say it out loud, then it isn't "real." So, here goes:

I'm going back on WeightWatchers. Today.

Summary: At the end of 2001, I went on WeightWatchers (WW) for the first time, and I lost 25 pounds in 3 months. I kept it off for nearly a year, sometimes lingering at the 30-pound mark. Now I'm back up to 216.5.

Details (and if you hate details, then skip down to the "Plan" section): Son was born in July of 2001 and I was never heavier. Sympathy weight, perhaps, but I had been carrying around too much weight for about 7 years at that point (bad habits learned while earning the Master's degree). September 11 happened, and I had this infant son to raise into this strange world. I took a different perspective on my life that month and wondered why I was WAITING to get in shape. So, I joined the online version of WeightWatchers, which worked well for me since I was either at my desk or attending/running a gazilion meetings all day long. Anything I'd eat was logged into the Web site when I came back to my desk. I quickly learned I was eating for at least one-and-a-half of me, and I had probably done so for several years.

On September 18, 2001, I was 30 years old and I weighed 227 pounds, which at a height of 5'9" is waay too much. In fact, I'd have to be a 6'7" 45-year-old in order for 221 to be healthy, let alone 227!!! My body mass index (BMI) was 34, which is considered "obese." By December 9, 2001 I was at 202 pounds with a BMI of 29, or just "overweight," which I thought was pretty darn exciting. By the beginning of February I had lost five more pounds to be at 197. That was the first time in YEARS that I was below 200 pounds. I could literally pull off my size 40 waist jeans with the belt buckled. I didn't feel like I had asthma anymore. When walking across campus, my students and colleagues didn't recognize me. My knees didn't hurt when I walked Chester. I could fit into the Jetta easily. Life was definitely different and much healthier.

Oh, and I must say that I really wasn't exercising all that much. My weight loss happened primarily because I put an end to unloading a truck into my stomach each day.

That spring semester-into-summer was my last time running new student orientation, and I was back at 202 (BMI=30) during most of that period. For working 10+ hours per day for a couple of months, I didn't think a five-pound gain was so bad. Most important: it stayed right around there the next few months, and I was no longer being very religious about WW at that point. I had learned the tools to maintain my weight, which I think is the lesson in all of this.

And then we moved to SCT. I gained gradually during the first year. I was learning a new lifestyle and working zany hours where I'd eat whatever was necessary to help me stay up longer hours for reading, paper-writing, managing stress, etc. By the end of the first year here, I was back up to 217 (BMI=32, back in the obese range). I was still 10 pounds under my highest weight, thankfully, though it has spiked up here & there during particularly stressful times. I've pretty much kept it right around the 215 range since then.

Plan: Yesterday I was 216.5 pounds (BMI=32), and I'm determined to start the big decrease from here on out. I hope that putting a structure to my eating habits will also foster a structured life for dissertation-writing. WW says the "ideal" weight for someone my height is between 135-162 pounds. Can you IMAGINE?? My first goal is to get to the mid 180s for now, and we'll go from there. It's healthy to lose about 2 pounds per week.

Dang this post is long. Thanks for reading (if you're still here with me)! The blog-based accountability will be good for me.


lemming said...

Hey, accountability is why I started blogging in the first place.

Do you drink more water as part of WW?

Rob said...

Well, that would depend upon how much water you're drinking now! :)

Yes, I drink a ton of water on WW. Weight loss during the first week or two is mostly water weight going buh-bye.