Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Weight, weight, don't tell me!

Apologies to NPR. It's about time for my weight loss widget to remind me that I haven't changed the number for a while. Why is that? Because the two numbers currently showing, 158.6 and 156.6, basically reflect the numbers I continue to see on the scale, with occasional dips to 156 or spikes to 159. I believe that the general trend is a couple pounds lower than it was a month ago...but it is hard to say. I think it is pretty much safe to say that I am not going to lose weight before the Boston Marathon. I am perturbed by this only because I am bewildered over what I can do to lose a pound. (Well, five or ten pounds.) I eat lots of vegetables and some fruit, included protein in every meal, eat moderate amounts of whole grain carbs, and only indulge in treats to the extent that my daily calorie allowance allows it. I track food and exercise to the point of obsessiveness. I suspect that my net calorie allowance might be too low, but I sometimes go over anyways, and plus that allows some cushion for potential underestimating of food portions and overestimating calories burned through exercise.* I have compared the percentage of calories in my diet from protein, fat, carbohydrates, and my numbers consistently fall within the American Dietary Guidelines recommendations. My typical ranges are Protein 18-20%, Fat 20-35% (though generally close to 30), and Carbohydrates 45-65% (mostly from fruits, vegetables and whole grains).** I actually would like to increase the proportion of protein a little, to 20-25%. I guess I could accomplish that by replacing a cookie treat with a hard-boiled egg...something to think about. My fiber consumption, by the way, is off the charts. That's what happens when you eat whole bags of spinach and prefer Fiber One cereal to any other kind of cereal! I have been a little worried that my weight is higher than last year, and could thus have a negative effect on the marathon. Well, I'm sure weighing less would have a positive effect (but that's not gonna happen). However, looking back at this time last year plus the months prior to the Newport Marathon (which was the first weekend of June), it appears that my weight range was exactly the same then. So I guess that is reassuring. I have been weighing myself almost daily, just so I can get a good picture of the range of fluctuation and not be stuck on any one number that comes up. I also have Tanita body fat percentage scale, and that consistently claims 14-18% body fat (depending on hydration). (I don't rely on that figure as accurate, but at least it is proportionally accurate from day to day.) After I am done with Boston, and recover from my post-marathon surfeit of lobster rolls and whoopie pies, I can take another look at weight loss efforts and see what I can accomplish over the summer (prior to the Portland Marathon). Now, I just need to fend off potential taper weight gain! *I have some concern that since I am quite good at running and other cardio, my body has become too efficient and doesn't use as many calories as the standard measurements would indicate. **American Dietary Guidelines: Protein 10-35 (15); Fat 20-35 (30); Carbs 45-65 (55).


lifestudent said...

You might just need to move away from calorie counting all together - like focus merely on veggie intake, or cutting sugar (or carbs). Changing your diet instead of "counting" what you consume. That seems to be a helpful trick when you hit a roadblock :)

In addition, the workout thing could be something too. If you just focus on a lot of long runs you also might not be burning calories the same way as you would if you were doing a lot of different workouts like speed/distance/plyos?

Kristin said...

I do change things up with speed work. But after Boston I am determined to start strength training. I do feel like that is somewhere I am lacking and it could make a difference!