One of the things I don’t talk about often is my weight. My weight was always the, well, if you will pardon the pun, the elephant in the room. It was the one thing in my life I seemed to have no control over. I was successful in other parts of my life, but not this one. I used to never get on the scale because I honestly didn’t know what I weighed. I figure that I lost about 10-15 lbs before I got on the scale. My highest recorded weight was 320 and my BMI was > 50. Weirdly enough, I was always pretty active. I was never a super couch potato. Now don’t get me wrong, me and a bag of chips spent plenty of time on the sofa. J I just always stayed pretty busy.
I have a full disclosure policy on my WLS(weight loss surgery) and what I weigh. WLS is not the “easy way” out and truthfully it is just a tool to help me lose the weight. Keeping it off is up to me. I am a year and a half post surgery and with a few exceptions I can eat and drink normally, just in smaller amounts. I currently weigh about 160 lbs. My weight ranges from 159-162. I weigh daily, but not to see if I have lost any weight. I find it fascinating how the body can gain 2-3 lbs through the day and even more after a really long work out. It’s a water thing, but I find it really interesting. The scale no longer rules my world. It is now just a tool. It does not make or break my day and it certainly does not indicate myself worth.
So, why would I tell anyone my weight? Women just don’t do that!!! Well, maybe they should. Most men have no idea how much women weigh and lets face it women lie. I think this leads to the skewed view we have on weight. I am in a size 8-10 and look pretty good for 44. (yeah, I tell my age too) Most people think I weight about 10lbs less than I actually do and when they find out my actual weight the comment is always “Wow, you most be mostly muscle. You know muscle weighs more that fat.” And for the record- a pound is a pound. Muscle takes up less space and burns more calories, but a pound of muscle is still a freaking pound. (ok, off my soapbox) Usually my response is something along the lines of “ I am actually pretty happy with my weight. Did I tell you I just ran a half marathon?”
Technically, I am still overweight per the BMI guidelines. I am 26.3 and 24.9 is considered normal. BMI does not take into account muscle mass or other information. When Arnold Schwartzenegger was Mr. Universe he had a BMI of 30.1, but I doubt anyone called him obese, at least not to his face! So, I don’t really use BMI as a calculation to live and die on.
All of this brings me to a Health Assessment and Fitness Test that I will do on Sunday at the gym. They are going to check my body composition- basically, how much is fat and how much is muscle. I am actually looking forward to this. I used to be 50% body fat. My home scale says I am about 23% fat. 21-24% is about normal for women. I would be thrilled if that were true. They are also going to check my VO2 Max or my aerobic capacity. I get to run on the treadmill with a cute little snorkel thing over my nose and mouth. In addition, they check my flexibility and a few other things. All of this takes about an hour. The cool thing is I did this just about a year ago, so I have something to compare it to. I should see a significant difference. But what I am REALLY interested in is six months from now. I should see a difference in muscle composition with all the cross training and weight lifting. So, on Sunday, I should have some interesting information to share.
Since this is also a blog about my training, I should tell you I cycled for 9 miles and swam 500 yard yesterday. I used my flippers for the freestyle part so the swim wasn’t too bad on the legs. I got to focus on my form and breathing. It’s getting a little easier. Not by much, but easier. One of the great things about being a beginner is that you can only improve. J. Today is going to be my rest day with my long run- about 6 miles tomorrow and then my health assessment on Sunday along with a core workout. I hope to get in a 6-8 mile run next week with my running buddy Ranae. I miss running with her. It’s hard to solve the world’s problems on a run by yourself