Monday, November 18, 2013

My monthly fatloss progress report....

Today's Post:  Monday, 11-18-2013

This report is no fun to write as it’s bad news this time

This is another mixed review report. (The bad news this month is in Part I.)

And, the likely results I'm headed for are still promising.  (Why is listed below in Part II.)

Part I:

The bad news first:

I gained back the two pounds I lost the month before.  And, another pound and a half for 3 & a half pounds gained.  Now I’m at a pound and a half over my goal weight

I even ate did continue the strategies I’ve continued to use that lost me the 30 pounds to start with.

I’m now 2 pounds below my goal weight. 

So, on the scale, I could gain 2 pounds of muscle without losing any fat and still be at my goal weight.

I also gained back the half an inch on my waist I had just lost the month before.  BOO!

THIS is the key measure for me. 

So that was very disappointing to me.  I think that the added pound and a half above gaining the 2 pounds back may be measurement error since the week before it WAS just a regain of the 2 pounds.

So I still need to lose a bit over 4 inches off my waist.

Based on the lack of what the bodybuilders call high definition and the small visible rolls of fat on my belly and “love handles” and hips and the equal amount of excess visceral fat likely inside my belly, I think I do have that much fat to lose. 

AND, if I eat mostly as I do now and gain even 10 of the 20 to 25 pounds of muscle I’d like to gain, I believe I can and will lose that fat.

I’d very much like to lose four more inches besides that first four from my waist for a total of 8 more inches and even more health benefits.  But at my age and overall sedentary life now, that may be too much to ask even after adding a good bit of muscle. 

(I suspect my stomach and intestines have been too stretched out to decrease that much even after losing the excess fat and gaining the muscle I plan to gain.  I’d love to be wrong about that though!)

There is a chance I found a way to get an inch or so of this off with a new technique I read about since last time.

For now, I will focus some on being just a bit more restrained on getting treats and hope that helps hold the line besides keeping up doing the things that lost me the 30 pounds to begin with.

I will fight to avoid gaining back any more weight; but at this point my main focus still will be to add muscle.

I also need to boost my metabolism to the extent I can do so. 

a) Adding muscle and the exercises I’m doing do help with that already.

b) There is a supplement available in Scandinavia that may boost metabolism enough to make a difference that I hope to make generally available and use myself.

The study on it found it does this better than the much less effective ones like green tea extract and eating some hotter peppers; and it may be possible it would help.)

I don’t have access to it now.  So I need to do more with exercise for now.

c)  It may be possible to wear a chilled vest around my belly and lower back during the weekday for at least an hour a day.  (I believe there may be a temperature that won’t distract me from my work that I can put up with for that long.  It would be high enough I’d not get too cold but cool enough to burn extra calories.)

The great news is that doing this also changes some of your white fat to brown fat that burns more energy all day long.

Again, I don’t have access to it now.  So I need to do more with exercise for now.

Part II.  The good news!:  Why the likely results soon are better!

Next I list why I’ve NOT been able to add quite a bit more muscle as I need to do to force the loss of my remaining belly fat.

So, why is the future looking better at least to some degree? 

It’s because two months ago, I tried something that solved both of those two problems!  And, I am continuing to do them!

1.  The two reasons why I’d NOT been able to add quite a bit more muscle despite knowing the effective way to do so:

In my at home super slow strength training, I’d been held back by struggling with some issues from a left shoulder injury. 

This injury had prevented me from getting stronger on the exercises that use my left shoulder.  Worse, it kept me from making further progress on several of the exercises where I DID get stronger.

Unlike my right shoulder which healed, my left shoulder seemed to keep getting re-injured.

THAT is finally getting better.  In fact, since last month, my left shoulder IS doing a lot better.

The corrective exercises the physical therapist gave me work.  Here again I’m doing them every week AND have made progress with them too.

By doing those exercises to strengthen my shoulders and mostly discontinuing the injurious style of jump rope I was doing, my left shoulder is finally no longer always slightly injured and is gradually recovering and getting stronger too.

This physical therapist was dramatically more competent and effective that the one I saw years ago

a) I was throwing my whole arms through the motion on my jump rope sessions on every repetition. 

You have to do that a bit to start the jump rope at first each time.  BUT, you can minimize it a bit and then use a wrist snap to keep it going mostly after that.  THAT removes 90% or more from the high impact forces on my shoulders!

The bad news is that I’m still relearning this new form and am still terrible at it.  (Since last month, I’m still bad at it and recovering to the point I was at before.  But I’m now making steady progress and beginning to recover some of the fitness the jump rope had given me before.

 I have gotten slightly better at it.  The best news is that doing my jump rope sessions no longer re-injures my left shoulder.

My fitness before had been better because I was doing my sets without a miss and doing longer sets.  BUT, I was forcing the sets to go well by through my arms through the motion.  So far it has seemed very slow to be able to do the sets without a miss without resorting to that.  BUT I DID manage it once.  So, I think I can do it again and begin to do it more of the time.  Once that happens and I usually do the majority to close all of my sessions without a miss and still NOT resort to that, I think I’ll be back to the fitness level I was at before.

And, that will boost my metabolism a bit!

But my progress on the new form is still not quite there; but it IS better than last month.  So I think I will get it back to where it was before.

b)  I’d been doing all my exercises for which I use my shoulders with a shoulders hunched bad posture.  That was causing them to work twice as hard at an angle they were not designed to do well.

So, she said to make a special effort to lift my chest as I did these exercises.  AND, she gave me two corrective exercises to increase my strength and control over how well I can hold my shoulders in the OK position.

That is still a work in progress.  And it will take some time to get better at it.  It’s a matter of gradually getting stronger over several months

The regular exercises that did pain my left shoulder a lot and my right shoulder some, ARE now much less hard on my shoulders.

The new form she suggested works; and my left shoulder is finally and definitely better.

Now that these exercises no longer re-injure me when I do them, my muscles now WILL heal and gradually allow me to get my strength back, get stronger, and add more muscle mass!

In fact, just in the last month, my left shoulder IS holding up to weights that would have given it fits 3 months ago!

2.   Secondly, most of the muscle I lost since I was younger I lost in my legs and buttocks and lower back. 

But to add that muscle I’d need more space and MUCH more weight to do the needed exercises at home. 

I’d also need a leg press machine or a rack with a setting to keep the weight from going down to the floor. And, when I’m working to the level where I can’t do a complete last repetition, one of those two ways of making that safe are critical.

So I’ve been making no or very limited progress on the exercises I do for my upper body at home and making too little for my legs and buttocks and lower back to add the muscle I need.

So, despite my willingness to work hard and the potential I can tell is really there to add the muscle I need, it had NOT been happening.

However, I AM now doing just that set of exercises at The Perfect Workout once a week; and I’m making steady progress at adding weight each week!

In addition, I’ve gotten a good bit stronger on the calf exercises I’ve been doing at home.

And, there’s more!

Even before my recent progress with my shoulder, I found that I WAS able to do their chest press on their machine without my shoulder holding me back!

Now that I also can hold my shoulders in a better position and they will get stronger, I will now gain the chest muscle mass and arm muscle mass I’ve wanted.

And, they also have machines to exercise the big muscles in my upper back.  And I’m getting stronger and adding weight on those exercises too.

So, I now have a real shot at adding enough muscle to force fat loss from my waist!  Finally!

3.  The other interesting news is that their scale measured me as having 8% body fat and having about 40 pounds of muscle.

So if I can add 20 pounds more, my calorie burn from my muscles has the potential to go up by 50%!!

THAT will keep me lean for sure!

Since my arms and shoulders and legs look like I have 11 to 17 % fat; and my belly looks as if I am at least 20% fat, their body fat percentage is WAY low!  Their number looks to be half or less of the real number!

But to the extent I am a bit more lean than I thought, it may mean that I’ll have to try something like liposuction to cut enough more from my belly.

However, I think it’s just off in my case.  Based on comparing my appearance with people who DO have 8% body fat; I think my overall fat is still closer to 20% at best.

So for now, working very hard to get fifty percent stronger or more and adding that 20 pounds of muscle is my goal.

AFTER I do that and get my body fat measured by a more accurate device; then I’ll think again about adding laser liposuction or something similar such as the cold belly wrap around if I still need to do so.

But based on the experience of other people and how they look after adding the muscle, I think and still hope that may not be needed. 

5.  The PGX fiber I spoke of last time, HAS really helped my reflux by giving the excess acid something to work on during the middle of the night when the acid is most acidic instead of my esophagus.   And, it has given me something to fill my empty stomach a bit.  So I’ve had no trouble avoiding midnight snacks.  But I have been chasing it with one spoon of apple sauce; and I’ll try switching that to ice water plus cleaning the PGX fiber off my teeth and see if that change helps.

It may because the small amount of calories and carbs in the applesauce even that little bit I was getting every night.

I very much hope so because between now and a month from now is Thanksgiving!

The good news for Thanksgiving is that we won’t have lots of leftovers at home as we did last year.  So by being pretty good at Thanksgiving dinner, I think I’ll gain far less than last year. 

And, if that one tweak does help with less applesauce at night, I may even lose back a bit by next month.

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