There are a lot of reason to lose weight. And as Americans, I think many of us can safely say that we need to lose a few pounds. That number varies for everyone. 2 pounds, 10 pounds, 40…etc.
I myself would like to lose a few pounds. It’s more a neurotic desire to weigh a whole number like 145 or 140 instead of 148. There is no rhyme or reason for it. 😉
According to doctors I’m still considered a “overweight.” I have not had my Body Fat measured in over a year. Honestly–I don’t think I need to.
Because while my goal might be to “lose a few pounds” if I stayed exactly where I am right now I’d be okay. I am under 150 pounds–my original goal weight when I set out on my journey.
There are some more important things than losing pounds. For example:
There is no way in HELL I could have run Hood to Coast without being fit. I’m not talking about just-being-able-to-run-kinda-fitness. Hood to Coast wasn’t just a Running Thing–it was an Endurance Thing. And a Recovery Thing. Despite my overuse injury, I recovered in all other aspects pretty quickly. Within a day and a half I was walking normally.
There is also no way I could hike the way I do without being fit. I’ve hiked as an overweight, out of shape person and it included a lot of stopping and resting breaks. Or “I need to catch my breath” breaks.
Swimming is another endurance kind of sport. Keeping my heart rate at the same elevated rate for 45 minutes while I swim without stopping takes fitness.
FITNESS BY NUMBERS
The lower your number is for your Resting Heart Rate the better your cardiovascular fitness level is. The average rate for men is 70. Lance Armstrong’s resting heart rate is 32. The last time I went to the doctor mine was around 65.
When was the last time you had your blood pressure checked? If it’s in the normal range, you’re golden.
Check your muscle strength. With my recent overuse injury I’ve been checked for muscle strength several times now. It’s really easy to do. Have a friend help you. Hold your leg up in the air a bit and have them push down or hold down your leg. YOU in turn try to push against it. Your friend should not be able to push your leg to the floor.
I will probably never been a size 2. I’m okay with that. Do my size 6 jeans feel a little lose? That’s the most common way I now measure my successes. The closer I get to my goal weight (basically just an arbitrary number I picked in my head) the less weight I seem to lose. The good news? I’m still losing inches and clothing sizes.
Sometimes you won’t see results when you step on the scale. Sometimes what you really need is it to measure. Seeing those inches disappear is a real kick! Sometimes even better than seeing a pound loss. Inches lost are usually visible. You’ll start to notice your clothes don’t fit right. Maybe you need to start wearing a belt more often. All great things.
I really recommend buying a tape measure and keeping it near your journal to log the changes. Keeping track = keeping ON track.
I wonder a lot if I could switch my thinking to “maintain and tone” instead of “I want to lose just 5 more pounds.” Just 5 more pounds…Just 5 more pounds…How many times can we say that? When do we become satisfied with WHERE we currently are?
QUESTION: Are you obsessed with a number on a scale? What would happen if you shifted that thinking to focusing on your fitness level instead?