We’re getting close to a wrap on this bad boy. People have sent in testimonials on how well it worked and “Season 2” has been picked up – in a manner of speaking. The next round of this will begin in March. This would be my testimonial as I will be continuing on even if there is a week lag in the “seasons.” The main reason is that the program is working. I’ll try and outline some of the reasons why I think it’s working though.
The app Lose It!
This was something my wife picked up from a friend of hers and I downloaded to check out. You put in the weight you are, the weight you want to be, and how much you want to lose a week (1, 1.5 or 2 pounds). The app then gives you how many calories you should be eating. If you punch in the exercise you’re doing it will also calculate how many more calories to add to your diet.
The app itself comes with a significant amount of food options to plug into your log, as well as the option to scan the code on store bought items. The features for adding food to your log was one of the best aspects of it. It also helps me to calculate the calories of the meals we’re making at home. Which leads me to…
Making Meals at Home
I’ve taken to making a modification of a chicken tortilla soup I found in a cookbook to use ingredients readily available here and that were more to my wife’s taste than the peppers in the standard recipe. Although it takes time, it is pretty easy to make and clocks in at 100 calories per cup.
Also on my go-to list is a pasta fagouli soup that takes less time involves more dishes and comes in at around 200 calories per cup. The thing that hangs up this one is the sausage and the pasta that goes in it. Although I have taken to using the whole grain pasta for the fiber and such.
Both soups get a side dish of a buttermilk cornbread that I make into cupcake papers to give us easy single servings. Using a modification to the recipe of using buttermilk instead of milk and adding a little more cornmeal the calories of the single servings are up to 165.
Taking the Challenge Seriously
At the beginning of January, I went out and bought a new scale. Our old one was old, probably broken (we figured out after getting the new scale) and wasn’t really reading for me. I also went out and picked up a bunch of new reusable containers, fresh spices and organized our pantry so that we can not only judge what needs to be replaced, but can also insure that the oldest stuff in there gets used first. We found stuff in that pantry that expired in 2010 when we cleaned it out.
While I cannot really “work out” due to my spinal injury, I have started on taking the dog for 20-30 minute walks. We’re now at a point where he expects it, so he bugs me until I do it no matter how much I would prefer not to. Ironically he also bugs me if he hasn’t gotten his nightly pill. I suspect deep down inside my dog may just be a natural pain in the ass – which makes for a good reason he fits in so well with the family.
Eat Like a Hobbit
Before Change Write Now I had two modes. I either ate way to little, or ate way to much. This lead meant when I thought I was doing well, I was eating so little my body was retaining everything. This lead me to planning out my food for the day. It also lead to me having the hobbit eating plan…
First breakfast, second breakfast, elevensies…
Literally I now eat 5 “meals” a day. It has gotten to the point where on the weekend if my wife keeps us going because she’s not hungry, I start to suffer. I first noticed it when I was making cupcakes and the recipe that I have had memorized for the past year and a half was gone. I had to look in the book. I grabbed the book, a greek yogurt and sat down for a while.
Water, Water and More Water
64oz a day at least. Every day. I think my bladder is filtering water at this point better than my coffee maker. Not that I’m going to test that theory out, mind you. I’m not Dr. Sheldon Cooper. (Bazinga!)
I’ve known for a long time that drinking a lot of water is good for all sorts of reasons, but with this program I’m now held accountable. Before if I slacked off on the water the only thing that happened is I had to look myself in the mirror. I do it now and I have to explain to my team why I dragged the points down this week.
Weeks when I felt bad, was tired, or didn’t feel like sticking to it, I knew that there were three women out there that would lose points in our ranking because of me. That kept me going when I wanted to let it slide. After all, they not only accepted a guy in their midst, but they accepted a guy named “Zombie Joe.” Also, when we discussed team names I half-jokingly threw out The Undead Poets Society and they all agreed on it.
Over the past couple of years I’ve become used to the fact that I’m now the minority in my chosen communities. I go to monthly meetings of a writers group that has a majority of romance writers. I attend reader and writer conventions where I am the 1%. Not the rich 1%, but the 1% that doesn’t have to wait in line at the restrooms.
I have no problem reading paranormal romance, young adult books, or even discussing them. I’ve even come to enjoy the looks friends of mine get when they find this out. Hell, I still chuckle when one of my players at game night was telling his girlfriend nobody there would know what she was talking about. I then corrected him on how to pronounce Manolo Blahnik.
I’ll wrap this up with one final story. The Undead Poets Society had a solid bid on third place, but mathematically for us to overtake first place multiple people in the two teams ahead of us would have to fall off the wagon. I told this to my team. Their answer to the statement we can lock third, but probably can’t take first? The hell we can’t! Which lead to our team getting the highest weekly total in the challenge to that point. I felt like we won the dieting Super Bowl.
Since starting this challenge I’ve managed to get my dog healthier, learned some new skills and lost 14-15 pounds in the process. According to my app I should hit the goal that I set some time in October. What that means is as long as Change Write Now is going, I’ll be joining. Although I’m not sure what I’m going to use for my Good/Bad Habits this time around. I have a couple weeks to decide.
Sign ups for the challenge are going through March 9th, just go to the Change Write Now web site to register. It costs nothing and gives you a whole lot in return. Even if you’re not a published author.