Sunday, June 17, 2012

Natural wonders and second week of Summer Sizzle

Happy Father’s Day to all readers who are fathers! 


Today I begin with a couple pictures of the rich natural diversity that exists in NW Wisconsin where our family has a cabin. Can you guess the name of the first butterfly? How about the name of the second?
No, that first butterfly is not a monarch. See that black line on the lower (hind) wings: That butterfly is a Viceroy,  a cleaver mimic of the monarch. The Viceroy is not poisonous like the monarch is to small birds and mammals or other invertebrates. We believe they co-evolved together.

The other picture is a male Automeris io or the Io giant silk moth who lives in woodland areas.They are both just a small sample of the magnificent diversity we witness every day here in NI WI.

My second week of the Summer Sizzle Slimdown challenge was great!! Our second weekly challenge was to get in over 6 hours of exercise. I am so far at 8 hours (6 biking and 1 walking and 1 hour cumulative core strengthening exercises). So, I did real well here. How did I do on my other goals?? 

1. Weight loss: Won’t weigh in for another two weeks so nothing to report here. 

2. Cycling: I began my training for the Venus de Miles this week. I rode 5/7days with one very good day of hills. There are hills in almost every ride I do, but when I do a “hill” ride it mean for me that there are hills throughout the ride. Yesterday I did a 22 mile ride of hills that was 1500 feet up and 1500 feet down over that 22 miles. This route that I do is near our cabin and crisscrosses through wonderful scenery including 7 lakes. I had my best time yesterday, too, coming in with the 22 miles under 2 hours and beating my last time by 7 minutes! 

3. Cross training: I did my core exercises 4/7 times, walked two miles and went swimming twice. 

4. Nutrition and health counseling: I completed my first nutrition part of the Live-Well Fitness last week. To begin the nutrition portion I had my resting metabolic rate (RMR) measured using this fun little gadget called the “Body Gem.” Here is what that gadget looks like:
Your RMR is the number of calories your body burns each day with little or no activity and accounts for a majority of the calories that your body burns. My RMR is 1070 calories. That means without doing anything physical my body burns 1070 calories a day just to maintain homeostasis. My nutritionist took into account my exercise (mainly cycling) to determine that to lose .25 to .50 pounds a week my caloric budget is 1500, again with an hour a day on average of cycling. This 1500 is not really a surprise. Over the last few months I have budgeted about 1500 calories/day and began to lose weight again. 

It is not a surprise to me either that my overall calorie numbers are fairly low. If I do not exercise much, I can only eat about 1200 calories a day. This number is way lower than what I was eating before I started this journey to get healthy and fit. I am estimating that for years I ate 400-500 or more calories extra a day. Those calories piled up into pounds that eventually put me squarely in the obese category.  But no more! Knowing my RMR is another important piece of information that will keep me moving forward in losing weight and becoming healthy. 

I leave you with a female painted turtle who laid her eggs in the gravel/sand of our driveway yesterday. The grandbabies are excited to see the baby turtles when they come out about August 7.

Thanks for reading! Have a great week!  TTFN, Michele


  1. That is such a weird looking thing but so neat to know these things as you're getting to where you want to be. So cool Michele. I knew the second one was a moth...not the name but at least it was a moth. I love these little lessons you give.
    Hope you have a great week. The 28th will be here before we know it and we'll be visiting in person. Cool Beans!
    Take care and God Bless!!

  2. My aunt used to collect moths. I think it was a 4-H project. Beautiful creatures.

    Your body and my body are similar in the calories needed to lose category. And it's just so hard to keep it in that narrow range.

    I wish I could be there with you and Julie, but MN is another solar system from where I am. Enjoy!

  3. I did know the Viceroy, but not the silk moth. Very cool pictures - thanks for sharing. I had no doubt you would rock the exercise this week! Prepping for your big ride sounds like tough work - but fun. I just got a new odometer for my bike so I am curious how far I can go this week.
    I had my RMR done a couple of years ago, and I was at 1700 calories which was surprising to me. I thought it sounded high. I am sticking to my 1270 cals when i can, even if I exercise.
    Have a great week and enjoy all of the beautiful nature around you!

  4. Isn't that interesting how close you estimated calorie wise. I think you are well tuned. Body mind wise. I cannot venture a guess about the rest without some sagacity... or is that perspicacity? Oh never mind. : )

    Yep I need to get out more.

    One thing I DO know, is if I want to get a morale boost I must ruminate and uncover. I see the results.

    OK - now where do we get the blue nose clips?

  5. I am also a slow loser and calorie burner. I guess some of us have bodies that hang on to our fuel instead of burning it. I also take a beta blocker, so that further slows the burn. Nevertheless, you are living proof that it can be done, even if it is a slower process. You continue to do a great job!

  6. Wow, that's cool about your baseline calorie burning. I didn't know such a device existed! Great job on the biking. Keep it up!

  7. What you're doing to get fit and lose weight sounds very interesting. Especially the bike riding. Good luck on your goals. Like you, I can only lose about .5-1.0 pound/week, due to an aging metabolism! I can't cut my calories much more, so it means I need to really step up the exercise. But that's good. It means I will be fitter overall over the next 30 years. Assuming I keep it up.

  8. So she really did leave eggs!! Glad you put that chair over the place. I'm glad I was wrong in doubting things.

  9. You are smashing it with the exercise, that's amazing! I aspire to be like you :)
    I would love to get an accurate RBR on day, something I will have to look into.
    Way to go Michelle!!

  10. What a fun, interesting post! Loved the butterfly pix and quiz and the turtles. I've spotted several turtles on my runs by the river this spring. I'm envious of your riding accomplishments too. I've been running more than riding recently. The picture of your w your grands in your previous post is wonderful. My favorite of you so far! Keep up the good work!

  11. I'm excited to see the turtles hatch too!!! :) Sounds like you are doing well Michele. Yay you!!!

  12. Photo the baby turtles for us! :)

    The small number of calories is always so surprising to me. Especially since all of our US nutrition labels are based on a 2000 calorie diet. faaaat nation.

  13. Such a great post!!

    You're doing great, Michele! K