Thursday, May 15, 2014
Old Boots: A Health and Weight Update
Notice the toes of the boots in the picture above. I bought these hiking boots in the fall of 2012 when I started my campaign to lose weight and improve my fitness. Less than two years later, I've walked the toes out of them. I'm certain that part of the problem comes from not spending enough on a better brand of boots. I bought these mainly because they weren't garish and they cost under $50. They kept my feet dry in snow and creeks and I've hiked several hundred miles in them without a single blister, so they weren't that bad. I feel like I got my money out of them.
Last year, I posted a lot of updates about my weight. It was right at a year ago I finally got my weight down to 224 from a starting weight of 284. I was confident I could keep it off.
Now, I'm starting to wonder. I've gained back close to half of what I lost. My weight is now hovering around 250. It's been disconcerting to see the numbers on the scale get higher month by month.
However, my body composition at my current 250 is way, way different than it was the last time I was at this weight, coming down from a higher number. I've been doing strength training for months and a significant chunk of my rising weight is almost certainly muscle. Today, I was doing 220# reps on the fly machine. When I started going to the gym last fall, I could only do 120#, maybe 150# if I really strained.
Alas, I still can't do a @&$#! unassisted chin up. That was a big goal for me when I started this, and I thought that I could reach it in six months. Oh well, maybe in another six.
More evidence that my weight gain isn't mostly fat coming back is that most of my pants from last year still fit. I do have a pair of 34" waist jeans that were the tightest jeans I got into at my lowest weight that I can't wear comfortably any more, but all the 36" waistbands still fit, and some are even loose. When I started my weight loss plan, I had a 42" waistline.
I'm wondering what it would take for me to get my weight moving in a different direction while at the same time continuing my strength training. Now that I'm 50, the number of years I have left to increase my strength are probably limited, so I feel like I should keep pushing myself to add muscle mass while I can. I'm hoping the effort will pay off when I'm 70, or even 80. On the other hand, I really, really want to get rid of the last band of fat around my gut. I feel like I could do it with a more calorie restrictive diet, but that type of diet is counterproductive for adding muscle.
Oh well. I guess it's something to think about the next time I go hiking. In new boots, of course. The old ones are just sad. So why do I feel happy when I look at them?