Being Bruce -: April 2011

Saturday, April 30, 2011

The First 100 Days of My Fitness, Health, and Weight Loss Challenge!

Well, I made it.

Finished my interim 10 day challenge and now have results for the first 100 days..

Met both goals, weight down to 154 (lost another 7.5 pounds for a total weight release of 27.5 pounds) in 100 days and body fat down to 17%, from a start of 25%. Thanks, blog readers, you've been unwitting (maybe in some cases unwilling) accountability buddies in this journey so far, and I appreciate your role in this journey. And now tomorrow I start P90X!
Below is my last day's activity post:
Day 101 - 154 pounds, 17% body fat, resting pulse 67
50 minute Shakeology workout
- Several (3) cups of black coffee
- 2 oz OJ with vitamins and supplements
- lots of water
- breakfast (after workout)- Shakeology with 1% milk, frozen strawberries and blueberries
- lunch - Shakeology with 1% milk, frozen strawberries and blueberries
- dinner - Chili with Romaine salad

Okay, I made it! I've met my goals. Feels good, and it's interesting how much more weight I've lost in just a short time by upping my exercise and doubling up on Shakeology. I'm looking forward to starting P90X tomorrow, I fully expect to be humbled by the exercises but intend to have a good time and do the best I can.

Overall Progress so far (first 100 Days):

Bruce's Progress Chart 1/20/2011 4/30/2011
Weight (pounds) 181.5 154.0
Body fat % 25% 17%
BMI (Body Mass Index) 27.6 23.4

If you want to join me on my Shakeology program, go to this link to order Shakeology. Please note that I am an independent distributor with Team Beachbody, the folks who make and sell Shakeology.

My goals:

I'm 5'8", medium frame, male, 64 years old. 
As I start my weight is 181.5 pounds, with 25% body fat, and a BMI of 27.6.

There are lots of opinions on weight ranges and ideal weight and acceptable and ideal body fat and BMI.

Here's what I'm considering for my sex, age, and height. (Your mileage may vary, so please don't take my numbers or statements on this as right for you or as medical facts or advice, they are just what I'm using for myself and what I'm comfortable with after some personal research - check it out for yourself and with your medical professionals if you have questions about yourself.)

Bruce's Healthy Range:

Weight 125-158 pounds
Body fat 14-20%
BMI  19-24

Bruce's Ideal (please remember, this is my opinion only)
Weight: 145 pounds
Body fat: 15
BMI: 22

Bruce's Target Goals for this 90-day program:
Weight: 150
Body fat: 18
BMI: 23

So that's the program I'm on and the goals I've set.

If you want to join me on my Shakeology program, go to this link to order Shakeology.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Wow, Big Results During Interim Challenge.

Wow, this is crazy (but I'm not complaining).

I've lost 5.5 pounds in 5 days!

I guess my body was really ready for me to step up the exercise (even though I'm certainly not doing anything even slightly extreme).

Still having Shakeology for breakfast and lunch, which is excellent, nutrition and protein-wise, and last night had a huge Easter dinner.

If this is what it's like during the interim stage, what will happen to my weight when I start P90X? Need to think about that because a big part of the P90X strategy is to build muscle, and muscle weighs more than fat. Of course I still have ample extra middle weight to lose (I'm guessing another 15-18 pounds in just that area alone!), so I'm not concerned, but am getting ready for a diet shift to much more protein when I start intense exercise in 5 days.

In the meantime, I'm happy to be seeing less of myself

Overall Progress so far (during the interim challenge):

Bruce's Progress Chart 4/20/2011 4/24/2011 5/1/2011
Start Today 10-Day Goal % of Goal
Weight (lbs) 161.5 157.0 154 60.0%
Body fat % 17 18 17 -100.0%
BMI (Body Mass Index) 24.6 23.9 23.4 60.9%

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

End of the 90-Day Challenge - The Results Post

OK, so this 90-Day Challenge is over.My weight, body fat percentage, and BMI are now all within healthy ranges for my age, gender, and height. So that's triple win because back in January I was significantly into the "not fit" category, a euphemism for "overweight".

At the end of this challenge. I've lost an even 20 pounds and am now. in my healthy weight range. My body fat down to 17%, better than target 18%, is at the top of the range for fit males my age. My BMI score, which is really just a calculation based on height and weight, is now in the healthy range.

So those numbers all are way better than when I started in January. I ended up picking up a couple pounds at the end because my exercise level has been less than even my pre-challenge normal for the past two weeks due to a lingering Spring cold. Since the only significant change in my life was using Shakeology (affiliate link) as a meal replacement, I'm going to credit the 20 pounds I lost to Shakeology.

The chart below shows my start and ending numbers.

Overall Progress
Bruce's Progress Chart 1/20/2011 4/20/2011 4/20/2011
Start Today 90-Day Goal % of Goal
Weight (lbs) 181.5 161.5 150 63.5.%
Body fat % 25 17 18 114.3%
BMI (Body Mass Index) 27.6 24.6 23 66.2%

I intentionally set a VERY ambitious weight loss goal because I like  challenges and I also knew if I set a moderate goal I might slip and slide  back into my cookie habit. On that score, BTW, I'm happy to report  that I no longer have cravings for cookies - a habit with six decades of  hardening. It took Shakeology, literally, to help me through the first few weeks to lose the cravings - I credit a significant part of the weight loss to the fact that when I have a shake with the low calorie, high protein, nutrition-loaded, low Glycemic Index (24) shake, I am satiated for a long time, usually 6 to 8 hours. Read that 'satisfied', 'not hungry', whatever works for you, for me it means 'not running to the cookie drawer'.

So now I'm at a good weight to start an exercise program. As I wrote in my original post about this challenge, I wanted to focus just on nutrition, and really just on adding Shakeology to my diet, to see the results for me in weight. Shakeology comes with a light exercise program and I used that some, maybe a dozen times in all, but mostly I just did what I usually do, which is go for a 20-40 minute, moderately brisk walk each day. So no big change in exercise for me. The significant difference was change in food intake - and in this case it was substituting Shakeology for my past lunches, which usually were sandwiches and/or leftovers. The other, related change, which was another benefit from Shakeology, was that I didn't snack between meals - because with Shakeology there's no fast sugar burn so I stay feeling full and satisfied. Clearly, it worked for me.

Now what? Well, I'm going to continue with Shakeology, that's for sure. But for me it's time to start focusing on increased exercise. I'd like to get my body weight closer to my  ideal (for height and gender) of 143 pounds, and get my body fat and BMI lower, too, but the real motivator for me is to increase my cardio conditioning, my flexibility, my core strength, and my overall strength. I'm looking forward to all of that, and, of course (here's another pitch), with the vast choice of fitness products from Beachbody I'll have no shortage of choices.

I want to  get rid of this cold and decide which way to go, but I think I'm going  to do a hybrid workout combination for another 90 day cycle. More on  that later, but right now  I'm celebrating - NOT with cake, cookies, and  ice cream!

For those who like this sort of thing, below is a Before photo, taken during the first week of my 90 day challenge.

And here again is a shot from this week.

The difference may not seem all that dramatic, but I can see it, and, believe me, I can feel it. Pick up a 20 pound weight - that's how much less I'm carrying around all the time.

Thanks for reading.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

What's Your Favorite Position; Sitting or Standing at Your Desk?

More often than not, these days, you'll find me standing at my desk. That's right, standing, not sitting.

During the past week I've been gradually increasing my standing time while I work at my computer (as you can see in this first photo).

While I'm still getting used to it, and now wear sneakers (for padding and support) rather than deck shoes (or no shoes), I'm convinced this is better for me.

And hey, not only will it apparently lower my chances of having a heart attack by 54% (what????), lessen lower back pain, and improve my core body strength, I should also lose some weight by standing rather than sitting at my desk. So how cool is that?

Standing rather than sitting at your desk also apparently decreases the incidence of "numb butt", though I've  not heard it does anything to quell PITA accusations.

Ok, so I'm having fun with this whole thing, but there's more to it.

Earlier this week  I picked  up on a Yahoo!News story that referenced a Men's Health Magazine story about standing at desks. The Most Dangerous Thing You'll Do All Day.

Bottom line, not only will you have less bottom, but significantly lower your chance of heart attack if you work standing up.

So, not wanting to be too late to the party, I immediately started looking around my home and office for a way to elevate my notebook computer (which is my main working computer) on my desk.

The 10.5 inch high wooden box (which actually contains my collection of leftover childhood toys), was just the right height for comfortable typing.

I posted on Facebook about it that day and quickly several people commented. One, Adam McNutt, had tried it before and reassembled his desk and posted a photo on my wall of his set  up (much neater than mine)

(photo courtesy of Adam McNutt)

Of course neither Adam or I are as over-the-top (so to speak) as my old friend and business associate Alfred Poor.

In February Alfred constructed a Walking Desk!

The short version of his story is he bought a used treadmill, cut the head off, embedded the electronics in a hollow door, built a mount for the door and now, while he works 8-9 hour days he also gets in some miles. Not aerobic, for sure - he has the treadmill set to 1MPH and a 5% incline.

According to Alfred (who I never doubt because he seems to know everything plus he went to Harvard and all), he found some stats that the average human (whoever that is) burns 100 calories an hour sitting at a desk, 150 calories an hour standing at a desk, and 200 calories an hour walking at a desk. 

Here are empty and loaded shots of Alfred's setup (and no, he won't build one for you):

(Photo courtesy of Alfred Poor.)

(Photo courtesy of Alfred Poor.)

Turns out he'd already written about his project in Electonic Component News, so here's the link to that story about Alfred Poor's Walking Desk, with a lot more detail about how he built it.

I do still keep a chair handy, I still prefer to read sitting down, but when I'm using the computer or on the phone, chances are I'll be standing.

I would love to hear what you think about this or see photos of your stand up (or walking) workstations.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Being Bruce Daily Kick Start 4-5--11

Click on the Play Button below to see today's Being Bruce Kick Start video with a fitness tip, birthdays, and motivation:

"Today, I awoke to a morning of wonder and awe" - Being Bruce

Day 77 - 162.0 pounds, 19% body fat, bp 104/71, resting pulse77
Exercise: 30 minute walk
- Several (3-5) cups of black coffee
- 2 oz OJ with vitamins and supplements
- lots of water
- breakfast -Quinoa with onions, oil,  and hot sauce.
- lunch - Shakeology chocolate with 1% milk, blueberries and strawberries

- dinner -  Chicken Caesar

Just returned from a 7 day trip. Mostly stuck to diet except  only had Shakeology 3 times. Weight stayed the same, but didn't lose, which I thought I might - despite lots of pizza and party buffet food! Back on track today, 15 days to go in this challenge!

. Overall Progress so far:
Bruce's Progress Chart 1/20/2011 4/5/2011 4/20/2011
Start Today 90-Day Goal % of Goal
Weight (lbs) 181.5 162.0
150 61.9%
Body fat % 25 19 18 85.7%
BMI (Body Mass Index) 27.6 24.6 23 64.6%

My diet is based on Beachbody's Shakeology:

Please note: I am an independent distributor with Beachbody and I benefit if people buy Shakeology. I make a big deal about it because I think it's fabulous and nothing else on the market compares, so that's why I brought it into our business.