Bragging, blogging, dieting, and determination

Starting weight: 230 lbs
Goal weight: 185 lbs
Currently: 223 lbs
De-big-ulation: 16% complete

I’ve been doing pretty well on the Weight Watchers points — I use the online tool to track what I eat, which is the most valuable part for me. I would probably do just as well if I wrote everything down in a book using a pencil, but I wouldn’t actually *do* that, so it’s moot. I had ambitions to keep a journal (a diary journal, that is, not a weight-loss journal) since I was eight years old, but it wasn’t until the Internet came along that I actually started to write something regularly. Mark Twain talks about this in The Innocents Abroad, describing the writing saloon in the steamer Quaker City on the first few days of their trip, when everybody was writing ten pages a day:

Alas! that journals so
voluminously begun should come to so lame and impotent a conclusion as most of them did! I doubt if there is a single pilgrim of all that host but can show a hundred fair pages of journal concerning the first twenty days’ voyaging in the Quaker City, and I am morally certain that not ten of the party can show twenty pages of journal for the succeeding twenty thousand miles of voyaging! At certain periods it becomes the dearest ambition of a man to keep a faithful record of his performances in a book; and he dashes at this work with an enthusiasm that imposes on him the notion that keeping a journal is the veriest pastime in the world, and the pleasantest. But if he only lives twenty-one days, he will find out that only those rare natures that are made up of pluck, endurance, devotion to duty for duty’s sake, and invincible determination may hope to venture upon so tremendous an enterprise as the keeping of a journal and not sustain a shameful defeat.

Twain was writing with his tongue in cheek, since the reader knows that he, Twain, wrote half of the book in the two weeks following the end of the journey from sketchy memories. If Twain had the ability to brag and tell lies and get read on a daily basis, like bloggers do, I’m sure he would have considered the problem solved. (He liked to show off his prodigious speed on the typewriter, a new invention, but only on the single phrase he had practiced over and over: “the boy stood on the burning deck.” This, of course, is by his own cheerful admission.)

Anyhow, the ability to write regularly about my delardassification progress is helping immensely. Weight Watchers is warning me about the fact that I’m losing more than two pounds a week, but I’m not starving myself, promise. If WW offered outside links, I’d show you my food intake. I’m managing to run a fair amount — yesterday, when we arrived home, I found the second jog stroller waiting in a huge box. I assembled it and took it out for a spin, which Lydia quite likes. Though with the humidity, going for a run is like wrestling with a warm, wet, dishrag.

My plan is to stick to the Weight Watchers points plan as much as I can, and run 3-4 times this week, taking it easy and not worrying at all about my pace, which is glacial. Once I get ten workouts under my belt, I’ll start thinking about setting a target pace, or doing one of the Runners-World approved regimes, like pushing one minute out of five for a week, then pushing two minutes out of five, etc. Wish me luck! Encouragement gratefully accepted! Here’s a link to my workout log, so that those of my friends who are superhuman triatheletes can give me helpful tips: “I suggest you should run more often! For longer distances! Oh, and faster!” (As Will points out, this advice is best delivered through a megaphone, with a thick accent.)

PS: Apparently my great-grandmother Anna Thomas did have a nature made up of “pluck, endurance, devotion to duty for duty’s sake, and invincible determination”, since she was able to keep, and complete, a grand tour journal. It’s possible that she wrote it all in a hurry on the trip home, of course, switching pens after each entry. Both approaches have precedent in my family.

3 responses to “Bragging, blogging, dieting, and determination”

  1. If you can give some exercising advice to someone who can no longer push her hulking two year old in a jogging stroller I’d be forever grateful. and BTW – I need the number of your stylist as I never once looked at you and though – hey there’s a guy who needs to lose weight!


  2. Oh, pshaw, but thanks. As far as the jogging stroller goes, I’d suggest courses that are downhill both ways, as you can then wear rollerblades. What it lacks in aerobic fitness, it’ll make up for in sheer adrenaline. (Have you tried the baby jogger with the big wheels, which seems to roll really nice and easy-like, perfect for flat courses like the Struble trail? I happen to have one I could lend you!)
    And as far as styling goes, I’m pretty sure that would be whomever we’re blaming this year for starting the whole man/woman double standard thing back in the day. “Og not look fat! Og need insulation while on mammoth hunt! Og’s woman stay at home, in cave, near fire, not need insulation. Og want her skinny so she lack insulation, not try to leave cave in winter. Og buy her lots of magazines with airbrushed models, ruin Og’s woman’s self-esteem.”


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