Friday, August 26, 2011

Final Slimmer This Summer Update

178. Those are my NEW numbers! That means that I lost 8 pounds on the Slimmer This Summer challenge. 178. My accumulated total loss is now 35 pounds since June 26, 2010. I am HALF way to my “dream” goal.

For me losing that 8 pounds means that I finally broke through a stall that seemed to go on forever. From January all the way to June 17, 2011, I did not record any loss. Since June 17, I posted another 4 pounds lost. I have worked incredibly hard for those 8 pounds, too. Incredibly hard. Here is what I have done:

Moving more: You can see in my cycling mileage accumulation that I am up to 757 miles biked. I started logging into the Daily Mile in late May. That means I rode over 250 miles each month. Besides biking, I made a practice in May, June and July of tackling stairs, too. I consistently climbed 400 or more stairs at least three times a week.

Eat less: On May 13th I started logging my daily food intake. Throughout the 12 weeks of this challenge, I averaged 1450 calories per day. I started the STS challenge with a goal of 1250 calories. I soon learned that this was simply not enough calories for me with my level of exercise, so I increased it a bit. During the STS challenge, I traveled to the Netherlands/France, a son was married, went to a number of sporting events, birthday parties, picnics, concerts, and other celebrations and regular events. I tracked my calories through it all. The only time that I did not track was 5 days when we were gone to my son’s wedding in WA state.

Ruminations on the weight loss: I am happy that I lost weight during this challenge. But here is the deal: eight pounds is not a lot for twelve weeks. Again, I worked incredibly hard. I was not perfect, but, I was pretty darn good. Better than I have ever been. Really and truly. I am encouraged that I lost weight, but discouraged that it required so much effort. I learned that my caloric window for losing is very, very narrow.

Most of you know that a pound of fat is equal to about 3500 calories. To lose a pound a week you need to have a caloric deficit of 500 calories over seven days. I am learning that this simple math does not work for me. For whatever reason, (mainly I think this is my age), I can not lose more than .75 pound per week at the most with vigorous exercise and careful monitoring of my calories. I wish it was not so, but, it is. Again, I am happy that I lost eight pounds. I am. I am a slow loser. It will take me at least another year to shed that other 35 pounds. You should also know that I am going to check in with my doctor about my track record so far, just because.

But, here is what I really want you to know: (my list of my CAN dos, one for each pound (!!))
1. I cannot remember when I last weighed in the 170’s. Honestly I cannot.
2. Physically I am stronger and more fit. Sometimes I surprise myself with my increased stamina. I can bike 10 miles with ease.
3. I can easily go to the MN State Fair and budget fair foods into my daily allotment: that would be ONE corn dog and half a Dairy Barn Blackberry malt.Trust me. I did just that.
4. I can go to a professional sporting event and eat healthy.
5. I can go to a birthday party or other family event and not overeat cake, even ice cream or frankly most everything else. Ditto for weddings (two!).
6. I can wear a belt. I have not worn one in years, but two days ago, I grabbed one because my pants would not stay up.
7. I can find something to eat that is healthy on almost any restaurant menu. “Garden salad for me, please, dressing on the side.”
8. I can wear a swim suit and not feel like I want to hide.

To Mir and Debbie: thank-you for hosting this challenge. The Slimmer This Summer challenge gave me an added boast and motivation to stay the course. Thank-you for your encouragement and support.

To all of my Slimmer This Summer friends: if you are still here: you rock! It takes time, determination and inspiration to really stick to something for twelve weeks. Lifestyle changes are not easy. Thank-you for sticking with me. I thank each of you for your encouragement.

To all of you weight loss bloggers: here is hoping you each find success in the coming weeks on your journey to be healthy and fit. I thank each of you for your support, too. Stay strong and TTFN,


  1. Awesome and way too go!! What wonderful breakthroughs! Enjoy the rest of your summer!

  2. It's a loss, it's progress, you learned stuff about yourself and calories, and you're in a better place. I'd say you SUCCEEDED!!!!! Very proud of your progress. Let's keep on going and never quit till we reach that place of health and contentment.

    Glad to have been along with you on this challenge. Onward!

  3. Michele, I know you'd have liked this to be quicker, but you are my hero and this is why. Your incredible patience and even more, your understanding of how to do this the RIGHT way. There are no diets in your vocabulary, no quick fixes or no "I quits." You have found exercise that you enjoy. I know another year seems eternal, but slipping into maintenance will be a seamless transition rather than a slap in the face because your lessons will be well-learned and your life will just continue in the way it has been. Not saying it will be easy, but the lifestyle changes will (and already are) be so natural, it won't seem so radical. I'm right there with you and like I said, you are such an encouragement to me. Hope I am that for you!

  4. You rock! And for me, most impressive is getting it done with all that travel. It really does me in:( As you probably know, the math never works for me either. So frustrating. But you have learned so much about what DOES work for you and that's all we can do; find our own way and then get out there and do it. Kudos for great progress.

  5. 8 Pounds....Girl that is amazing. I don't care how long it took. YOU DID IT!! Congratulations!!!

    You have done an amazing job. So proud of you!!!

    Keep up the great work - I'm still in for another year...We can do this!!

    Keep focused!

  6. Fantastic Michelle! You are going in the right direction. Even if it takes you a year, you will get there! How much would you weigh in a year if you didn't try? :)

  7. Now that Slimmer this Summer is drawing to a close, I am inviting fellow challengers to join a new challenge. Come and check it out!

  8. I've been on a behavior modification soap box lately because I really feel this is the key to long-term weight loss and maintenance. Eight pounds is a fantastic loss with your behavior changes. Eight pounds would be a terrible loss if there are no behavior changes and you gain back 12 pounds. I say cheers for 8 pounds gone forever.

  9. Yes! Yes! Yes! I'm so delighted with your loss.

    I totally feel your pain on the extremely slow weight loss...same with me. I bike as much as you do, plus Zumba, weight training and occasional running, and only average a few ounces gone a week. It is what it is, and all Praise to Heaven that the average weight is going down for both of us!

  10. I know the age thing. I have it, too. And it DOES make a huge difference in the time it takes to lose. Too bad it doesn't work the other way, easy to gain.

    Just keep on doing what you're doing. You are making positive permanent changes in your health, and ultimately that is what matters.

    You inspire me every day. Really. Onward!

  11. YES! a 'stall' is so frustrating!!! Keep it up!! and dont give up!!

  12. YEAH!!!! 8 lbs is awesome, however I know where they went. I've been bad, very...very bad but Thursday is my new day to start again. Maintenance is not for me, at least not now. I have more to learn.
    I am so proud of you Michele. You rock and you've learned and you're doing it. YEAH!!! Keep it up and you will reach your goal. I know you will, I have faith in you!!!
    Take care and have a blessed week.

  13. Michele, 8 pounds is good progress, with the wedding and travel especially. Thanks for your supportive comments on my blog!

  14. Yay, I think you did great! You just keep going forward and the pounds need to go downward! Focusing on the positives and making a list of 'can dos' is an awesome idea and should help keep you focused. Congrats!

  15. I bow before you....yes I do. Maybe if I do it enough, it will count as some kind of middriff slimming excercise. What do you think?

    Listen closely, Michele....I'm giving you a standing ovation (yay! another exercise for me). You're great!


  16. Awesome- a breakthrough means so much! Congrats! The challenge rocked!

  17. You did awesome because sometimes learning what you can do is all you really need:-) It's amazing how much one really can do when they try! Great work!!

  18. Congrats on your fantastic progress. I believe if it comes off fast it comes back on faster (been there, done that). Slow and steady really is the way to go. Keep up the good work. Rock on!

  19. Love this Michele. A million congratulations on all of your success!!!!! Have a great week.

  20. You are doing AWESOME! I love your list of CANS. Great idea.