Sunday, December 23, 2007

Getting reacquainted with my kitchen(ette)

The big shopping trip yesterday has given me lots of reasons to spend time in the kitchen. Well, it's more of a kitchenette, in my modest studio apartment, but enough space to cook some good eats, nevertheless.

For breakfast, I made whole grain apple pancakes and ate them with maple syrup and a scoop of cottage cheese with blueberries, for some protein. Lunch (and dinner tonight) was a delicious beef stew that I cooked early this afternoon. I'll be posting both of these recipes in the near future.

I just returned from the gym, where I did about 2 miles, at a 8:34 min/mile pace. I am still completely in awe of how difficult this modest effort seemed to me. I was never aerobically uncomfortable, but felt a lot of something (tension/fatigue?) in the area between my lower calves and ankles. I'm not exactly sure what this is about, and sort of wonder if it might be the running shoes that I'm using, since the only other time I've experienced this feeling was when wearing that particular pair on a fairly long run last spring or summer. Maybe the geometry is off?

On the bright side, my gym has fancy new flat panel TVs in front of each treadmill now. We had tiny ones before, but they were small enough that it could be more of an annoyance than pleasure to watch them. The screens that we have now appear to be about 13-15", and provided plenty of room to watch today's Bills - Giants game.

It's slightly worse than I thought

Wow. I hadn't weighed myself since a few weeks ago, when I realized that I had gained 8 lbs. from my "fighting weight" this summer. Yesterday, I hopped on the scale again and realized that I'm now 13 lbs. over that weight. Just wow. I can't believe I gained an additional five pounds in a few weeks.

To provide some context, my "fighting weight", in July, was 168 lbs and I'm now 181 lbs. I ran a half marathon in July, at a pace below 7:00 / mile. After that, I pretty much stopped running (and exercising). I did about 2.5 miles on the treadmill the other night, at an 8:34 /mile pace, and felt really tired afterward.

The realization that I've gained such a significant amount of weight has given me even more motivation to get into shape. I've never had my weight fluctuate this much before, and I've never been so casual or careless about my eating and exercise habits. To begin to remedy this, I went grocery shopping last night, so that I could fill my fridge with healthy foods and begin to cook again. It seems that my decline in fitness and health also coincided with an increase in the number of times I eat out each week. I'm hoping that by beginning to cook my own meals again, I'll have more control over what I eat and snack on, and therefore facilitate the process.

I'll be posting some of my favorite recipes here, so please subscribe, if that interests you, and also share your own favorite recipes for meals and snacks.

Monday, December 17, 2007

A slow start...

My transformation got off to a slow start today, with the following:

3x10 pushups
3x15 crunches
3x10 dumbell curls (30 lbs.)

I was going to go to the gym and run, but it's cold an icy right now in my North Eastern city and given how out of shape I am, I thought that tonight's home workout wasn't too bad. I'll try to get a run in tomorrow, though.

A client has attempted to sabotage my progress with a home delivery of a 100 piece box of chocolate (2.3 lbs!). Yumm... :)

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Slightly Out of Shape (and going to do something about it...)

Welcome to Slightly out of Shape Guy. I'm a guy in my early-30's who, like many people my age, has begun to let my body go. It's a phenomenon I've seen frequently among friends and colleagues, but one that I've only begun to experience myself over the past year or so, as I've cut down on physical activity, started a more sedentary job, and probably eaten less nutritiously.

This is my attempt at self-motivation. I'll be documenting some of my workouts here, though not every one, and updating the blog with pictures over time. My intent is not so much to improve the way that I look but, more importantly, to feel healthy again. Nevertheless, I know that this usually goes hand-in-hand with an improvement in physical appearance, and I want to document that, for whatever additional motivation it might provide.

So, here is t=0. I'm probably in the worst shape of my life right now and generally feel sluggish and unhealthy. Let's see where this goes...