Lesamy, pronunced “Less-oh-me” i.e. less of me, is my new made up blog tag/category word in the fine tradition of flubbage. Technically I suppose it’s a sub-division of flubbage but because it is a project in its own right, a specific endeavour like Buffy Rewatch, it therefore deserves it’s own category and word.
So what is it?
Ok. Basically I’ve decided to try to lose some weight. I have pretty much always been overweight and not minded much. As long as my general health and fitness was ok I didn’t feel inclined to go chasing a particular body image. However lately I’ve noticed I’m not as fit as I was. So I started to think about upping the amount of regular exercise I get.
This led to me deciding, this last saturday, to do specific exercises every day and increase the amount of walking I do. I did this for a couple of days and started to wonder if I’d feel the effect in terms of my waistline and so thought I’d weigh myself. Which led to the discovery that my scales are bust. Which led to the purchase of a new set. Which led me to thinking more about weight than fitness per se.
The Harry Potter Effect
One of the things that occurred to me as soon as I thought about weighing myself was to set up a spreadsheet. Some readers will remember my Harry Potter read-all-the-books marathon of last year, in which my use of a spreadsheet was both a kind of helpful distraction and motivator. Silly but true. So I set up a spreadsheet to record my weight. And really, only because it gave me another formula to plug in I added a column for BMI (Body Mass Index).
That was perhaps a mistake.I knew I was overweight. I thought I was probably “technically” obese. But the number I cam up with seems to be in the “Are you sure you’re not dead yet?” category. Oh well. In the end it’s just a number. I would have liked to make a goal of getting into the overweight category but since that would probably involve somehow stretching to 3m tall I don’t think that’s realistic.
The Sensible Approach
Looking up the formula for BMI did help me in one way though. It led me to some useful, reputable, websites with sensible advice. The Harry Potter marathon was the reading equivalent of a crash diet and I think I was already aware that I need to go for slow and steady if I want to keep the weight off, so reading just that along with some reasonable goals and advice was actually encouraging. So based on what I read I’ve come up with the following:
- I’m doing a few minutes worth of exercise morning and evening. I intend to start slow and build up, so maybe in 3-4 weeks I’ll increase the number/duration of that.
- I’m cutting out snacks and having just the two meals a day that I theoretically already have – lunch and evening meal.
- I plan to add breakfast in at some point but it’s never been a major meal for me and I don’t want to change too much all in one go so I’m leaving that one until later.
- I’ll aim for ~1800 calories a day most days with the occasional (no more than weekly) cheat day of 2300.
- I’ll expect the progress to be slow, aiming at no more than about 1-2lbs or 1kg loss a week.
- I’ll only weigh myself once a week (and more and you get discouraged with progress or frustrated by fluctuations)
- I’ll expect the occasional set back but won’t be phased, will carry on, and will seek support and encouragement.
- My goal initially will be a 10% reduction. Doing this by Christmas is achievable.
Having just followed this full regime for a day or two it’s not so hard that I can’t see myself carrying it on – potentially indefinitely as I want to keep the weight off. 1800 calories is a lot less than I was having but with a slightly smaller lunch I can still have what I consider to be a perfectly reasonable evening meal, with a nice desert. I just can’t have all the extra snacks. I have to choose between the nice yoghurt, the ice cream and the chocolate and just have one of those and not all three.
In a word it’s doable.
My Mean Mother’s Method
I said above that I’ve been ok with being overweight in the past so long as I’m generally healthy. However one person in my life wasn’t and that was my mother. She means well but it comes across as nagging. Recently I got home to find an envelope addressed in her handwriting. There was no note or letter, just a clipping from her local newspaper about a guy who’d lost some amazing amount of weight and his secret apparently was getting support through his blog. I just thought “not too subtle mam” and figured she’d thought of me because she associates me with all things computery. And fatness obviously.
A few weeks later having independantly decided to do this one of the things recommended in my reading was to get moral support. There’s no way I’d join a slimming club. I’m just not that much of a joiner plus I knew a guy who did weight-watchers and they were very civil to him but being the only bloke made it a bit uncomfortable. Best case scenario I think you’d be treated as a rare and special specimen and worst case you’d be seen as invading their safe female-only space. Besides it costs money. Bugger that.
So the blog it is.