Saturday, December 31, 2016

Happiness and Working Out

About 4 months ago, I transitioned from a failing company with a nightmare boss, to a company that
is in the same field that I am proud to work for. During this transition, I assumed that I would be able to work out regularly because my drive time would be decreasing, but it was more difficult to make time than I thought.

In December, I had a conversation with a friend, and I expressed that I was feeling like I was struggling at work, and might be in the wrong field. When we were talking about why I was unhappy, my schedule was one of my top issues. I really just wanted to be able to get to a class at the gym, and my schedule effectively makes it impossible unless I have a cancellation, or I get up at 4:30am.

Generic cycle class
Generic Cycle Class (Royalty Free)
So I started going to the gym when there were cancellations at work. And I started getting up at 4:30am some days, to get the the morning spin class. I have been really prioritizing cycling classes at my local YMCA. Sometimes I even go to a stretch or yoga class after if it is available and I have time. I am so glad that I kept my gym memberships because it has allowed me to go to the gym the moment I get the idea. The ability to honor my spontaneity has really been a blessing.

Although I have not actually lost any weight in conjunction with my gym visits, I am still really happy with myself. These classes have been making me feel great! I enjoy the soreness that comes with hard workouts and how my lungs feel after getting in cardio, and how bright and happy my outlook is afterwards.

Friday, December 30, 2016

Starting Stats 2.0 (ie. I need to lose 80 pounds!)

I have struggled with my weight my whole life, most notably in the last 3 years. In November of 2014 I weighed around 150lbs, in February of 2016 I weighed about 170 lbs and right now (December 2016) I am hovering at 204lbs. It has gotten out of hand and something has to change. My weight skyrocketing in the last few years is new, but my struggle is an old friend.

I remember telling a friend in 3rd grade that I was on a diet, so I couldn't eat part of my lunch. I remember calculating how many calories were in a plate of brownies when I was a sophomore in college and deciding that I could totally eat the whole plate if I didn't eat anything else that day. I have done so much binge eating, so much starvation, so much food tracking and obsessively avoiding the scale or obsessively checking the scale. I honestly don't understand how I can have struggled with my weight for over a decade, and have still gained an astronomical amount of weight.

get more sleep, image of bed
Get more sleep (Royalty free image)
I have attempted repeatedly to "restart,"  but restarting is over. Traditional weight loss plans have failed me, so I am going to resort to good old science. My plan is to take one or two goals in a row, and focus on them.

Currently I am focusing on sleep and maintaining a vegetarian diet. Both of these goals are science based in terms of helping me lose weight. Both of these basic strategies have many research studies backing them up.

[L]ack of sleep also disrupts the balance of key hormones that control appetite, so sleep-deprived people may be hungrier than those who get enough rest each night." By increasing my nightly hours slept, hopefully  I can gain more control over my appetite and stress level. More sleep will hopefully also give me more energy to go to the gym, or cook my own food as well.