I can tell you one thing already though – I’m not going to be happy.
Stepped on the scales this morning for the first time in about three weeks, and I was up higher than I’ve been in a long time: 155.4 lbs.
Now, given that I thought I was around 150, you might not think that’s bad. And it’s not! Plenty of people see their weight fluctuating easily by 5 lbs depending on what they’ve eaten, hormones/time of month, time of day etc. However, I am not one of those people. Or at least, I was keeping track of how my weight was fluctuating – previously, if I was on a run of having been pretty healthy, got enough sleep etc, I’d be about 148 first thing in the morning. If I was on my period, it’d reach a high of 153. Usually was around 150-151. So for it to be at 155 when I’m not on my period, it’s a warning signal.
It’s saying “what were you expecting, that four days of burgers in a row followed by giant plates of gnocchi and desserts weren’t going to do anything? They’re hardly healthy eating!” that I kind of let my eating get away from me a bit. My occasional treats weren’t so occasional, and I started to see fewer and fewer vegetables in my diet. I know I wasn’t planning on letting weight be the only factor I was looking at over this 100 days (30 of which I’ve wasted by not really doing what I was planning on doing), but as I’ve exercised less and less as the weeks have gone on too, I know that I haven’t just suddenly gained muscle mass.
Now there’s obviously still a chance that I’m bloated for some reason today. It could be lower tomorrow. But I still think my average is higher than it was at the start of this challenge. So let’s have a look at measurements to get a proper view on things.
You might have noticed that some time has passed between my last post (in which I talk about how I will provide updates here on how my 100 days of healthy is going) and this one. Not as much time as has passed between previous posts, but still we are approaching a good four weeks without a single update here on how everything is going.
The reason for that is two-fold, although perhaps they can be considered the same thing. The first being that I started a new project at work, and the second is that I completely lost sight of how to manage my time well.
The new project at work is still out of town, however rather than flying up to Edinburgh each week I will now get the train up to Birmingham – a shorter commute that means I can get up slightly later on a Monday and get home earlier on a Thursday. But it’s a much busier project, and the last three weeks (the first few of this project) have been a bit manic. I had one day to get to grips with the workstream I now own before the previous owner left, and I spent the first two weeks trying to put everything into some semblance of order and trying not to break down.
I’m one of the people working the fewest hours at the moment, and I get there before 9 and leave close to 7. I know this is normal for some, but the end of my last project was so quiet that I was doing a 9-5 with little to do for the last few weeks of it. Having a busy 9-7 is a very different thing, especially when you’re trying to get your head around completely new things with tight deadlines that are coming up very soon. It was stressful.
So what does healthy living look like, and how will I keep track of what I’m doing?
To start with, in a similar vein to John Green I’m not going to place the main focus on my weight. Yes, I would like to lose some, but it’s not overly important – I’m currently considered a healthy weight, albeit close to the top of the range. It’s also just one factor amidst myriad others, and you can definitely be unhealthy and lose weight!
Instead, I’d like to see if I can gain strength and increase my flexibility. I plan on taking my measurements as I’d like to lower my body fat percentage and I think that’s probably the best way to start noticing if my body is changing shape/composition. But I’d also like to see if my skin improves, how my energy levels are affected, and even if my moods change. This will be a holistic healthy 100 days.
I plan to track this in a number of ways. Primarily I will write about my experience here, sharing both metrics and how I’m feeling and what I’m doing. I plan to keep track of metrics in a spreadsheet on google where I will track my weight and measurements and whether I’ve done the things I’m supposed to that day. I also want to share photos of how I’m eating on my Instagram to help me with accountability and I will probably moan a lot on my Tumblr in the meantime. For measuring flexibility, as well as noting down what I notice, I may also film myself periodically doing the same yoga routine so I can literally see how I improve.
From today, Tuesday 20th September 2016 (clearly not the date the above photo was taken), there are 103 days until January 1st.
I’ve been thinking recently about how much I feel I’ve let myself go and got into bad, unhealthy habits. Yes, I’ve been walking more recently, but I don’t really have a good consistent exercise habit, and my food habits have become appalling. I’ve not gained weight noticeably on the scales – except I’m nearly half a stone heavier than I was this time last year and I’ve not lost anything in months at all and actually the scales say my average weight is slowly creeping up – not by much, but it’s moving up – but I’ve noticeably gained some weight on my face and my arms feel softer and bigger etc.
Just as I was thinking about this I saw that John Green is going to start a 100 days thing (https://www.youtube.com/100days) in which he and a friend see what it’s really like to live healthily for 100 days. The longest I’ve ever gone is a month, and I felt pretty good after that – at the moment I can hardly stick to half a day. I keep saying I’ll do this or that and then instantly not doing it.