Friday, January 29, 2010

Day 29: The Weigh In - Week 4

As I said yesterday, it was a social week. I'm always weary of being too social if I'm ever trying to watch what I eat because as you act social, you eat social (ie. you eat what everyone else is eating, which tends to be crap).

It also seemed to be a week where I was testing to see what I could get away with. I wouldn't do it too much but every so often, as I listed off yesterday, I would say, "Why not?"

STARTING WEIGHT (1/1): 254.
CURRENT WEIGHT (1/29): 240.
Weight loss this week: 4 lb.
Total weight loss: 14 lb.

Unbelievable! This was a total shock to me. But it also tells me that I'm really still watching what I'm eating. I think any bad thing I eat I really think about. I still haven't joined the Welles Park Fitness Center yet but I'm getting a little bit more exercise in because of Wii boxing and weight training at home. This seems to be working.

For those who are interested, I weighed 230 when I moved to Chicago in September 2006. I believe the lowest I weighed in the last ten years was 214. So yeah, fourteen pounds in my first month? And I'm still enjoying my eating habits (for the most part). I think that's pretty amazing.

Neil

PS-- I'm going to be cooking something new every week and blogging about it. Keep an eye out!

Day 28: Boozing + Inconsistency

Oh my dear blog. Like so many beginner bloggers, I was good updating you early and then slowly have begun to neglect you. I will not neglect you this year. I swear.

This week began as a binge. It was not planned, but last Saturday night I drank a lot. Mind you, I went on a pub crawl, so I should have known better. I never really went on a real pub crawl before; at least one where you just walk down from bar to bar within blocks of each other. I was only planning on going to a couple of bars. Plans changed. I ended up passing out at my friend Amanda's place. Neil fail.

The good (?) news is that I didn't have a drop of beer. It was all rum+diets and vodka+Sprites. I don't know how I would've lost control that way. Odd. I would also like to note, to those who are worrying, that I very rarely drink. (This is probably another reason I ended pub crawl so poorly.) It was a rough week last week; sometimes it's just good to get plastered. Anyway, it ruined my Sunday and it was enough to keep me away from liquor the whole week.

However, it did not keep me from being social. I had social events every night this week (excluding tonight) and I was pretty good on my meals, with a few slip-ups here and there. I had a few snack wraps at McDonalds on Monday (it was the only place around and I had only had lunch that day) and I studied the nutrition menu as I ate. Conclusion: There is really nothing good for you there. Even the salads are higher in calories than they should be. The best thing you can probably have there is a 4 piece McNugget (190 cal). I had a few slices of pizza on Sunday (hangover you see). Some chili on Tuesday. A candy bar on Wednesday. These slip-ups are ruining my "guilt free meal" I'm supposed to give myself once a week! We'll see if they affected my weight loss.

I finally got some decent exercise tonight. Kicked some more ass in Wii boxing; I really think I should be boxing every night. I really work up a sweat doing it. I also lifted weights while the video processed on my computer while I edited. Was the exercise too little too late?

I guess we'll find out for the weigh in tomorrow.

Neil

Friday, January 22, 2010

Day 22: The Weigh In - Week 3

Oh yeah, guys. It's time for my Week 3 weigh in! This was another week where I felt like I was cheating and I wasn't going to lose any weight. I included cookies amongst my snacks, which is probably why I felt like crap. The important thing was to portion things out; I never ate more than what a serving was on the package and that was the only serving I'd have that day of any particular snack.

Overall, it was another good week. I sure eat a lot of Subway. It's quickly becoming my dinner every night and, surprisingly, I'm really not getting sick of it and actually liking it more and more. (I discovered how good the Black Forest Ham sandwich is today.) I'll write more about Subway tomorrow. On to the weigh in...

STARTING WEIGHT (1/1): 254.
CURRENT WEIGHT (1/22): 244.
Weight loss this week: 1 lb.
Total weight loss: 10 lb.

Snap! Only one pound lost. But still, I maintained a weight loss. The good news is that I am joining the Welles Park Fitness Center this weekend so as to continue maintaining a continued weight loss. I've also joined livestrong.com to help monitor my caloric intake and burn.

To sleeping in!
Neil

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Day 19: My Boxing Career Has Crippled Me

So, I've been playing the Wii on a pretty regular basis since I got it a few weeks ago. I've been limiting gameplay to tennis, baseball and boxing, all of which give you a decent amount of a workout, but mainly just for your arm that has the most dexterity. In this case, it was my right arm that got the biggest workout. After the first weekend of this, my right arm was sore so I had to lay off the Wii for a few days.

On Sunday, I decided to finally start boxing. I would just like to point out that I am an excellent boxer. I barreled through about 9-10 opponents before I was finally knocked out. What I didn't realize that, as I worked up the biggest sweat I ever got playing the Wii, it took me about 45 minutes to get to that point. I also did not realize yesterday how much of a workout I got.

For those who have played boxing on the Wii, you know the key to winning matches is really to avoid your opponents punches more than connecting with your own. There are many ways to avoid getting punched, including putting your gloves in front of you and weaving from side to side.

Apparently, doing this for 45 minutes straight - without stretching beforehand - has obliterated my back muscles and shoulders. So, I am hereby announcing my retirement from professional Wii boxing. However, should I hear the fans chanting my name and calling for my return, I shall perhaps come back to the sport that I dominated for almost an hour. Maybe as soon as this weekend.

Only time will tell.

Neil

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Day 17: It's A Beautiful Day

I got some calories to burn.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Day 16: I Made Me A Chart

I will have to look at this every day.


Friday, January 15, 2010

Day 15: The Weigh In - Week 2

I was incredibly nervous before the weigh in this week. I felt like I hadn't lost anything and, in fact, felt like I had gained weight since last week. I was putting it off and then, finally, I just had to do it.

STARTING WEIGHT (1/1): 254.
CURRENT WEIGHT (1/15): 245.
Weight loss this week: 3 lb.
Total weight loss: 9 lb.

I still lost weight, although it's half as much as I lost last week. I am not too alarmed by this, since I didn't expect to lose MORE and I still feel like I was not as good this week with eating.

All of this weight loss was done with minimal exercise. My focus during these first two weeks was to adjust my eating habits. Now I'm going to focus on adding exercise into the mix, which means I'm probably going to get the Wii Fit tomorrow, if I can find it. If not, I'm just going to be running and pushups and situps more. Just finding more ways to sweat, really. I'll also be dealing with possible weight gain further down the road as I turn fat into muscle. I think I have a while longer though until that happens.

My two day weekends are also going to be three day weekends for the next five weeks too, as they are starting furlough days again (!) which I guess is good and bad news. I will enjoy the extra day I'll have to sleep in as well as a chance to not sit on my can all day.

To Friday!
Neil

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Day 13: Reflections

Today sucked at work. Like, sucked really bad. I just want to say that. But I didn't let it sour my meal plan. I ate rather well today, with lettuce chicken breast wraps at lunch and a Subway dinner, plus fruit for breakfast. I am changing already and it's showing. More than one person has noticed. :)

Although much worse things are going on in the world right now (You can text "HAITI" to 90999 to donate $10 to Red Cross relief efforts in Haiti. I did.), I'm gonna give a brief synopsis of my sob story that I touched upon in my first entry at the beginning of the year.

I have many friends who have been different shapes and sizes over their lifetime. They are who they are and I think they're all great no matter what they look like, but many of them have known the joys of being thin. At some point in their life, they were thin and I'm sure they physically felt fantastic.



Neeeeeerd!! 1991.


I have never known that joy. Correction: I cannot remember feeling that joy. The last time I was at a comfortable weight was when I was around eight years old. Since then, I have just gained weight much faster than I ever should have. A lot of people in my family have had similar journeys so I chalk it up to a feeling that's in my blood, but it's not healthy, no matter what it is.

I want to clarify: I don't really don't mind being overweight. I enjoy food and I like who I am as a person, whether I'm overweight or not. I think everyone is beautiful no matter how they choose to live (unless they don't take showers). I just feel I could be living a healthier lifestyle and prolonging my life if I chose to eat better. I need a challenge and I think this is just the route to take.

This is right. It feels right. It's all going very well so far. It hasn't been easy and it's a constant battle, but I really honestly feel that I've turned my mind around for good. It's quite exciting to know this and believe it.

I want to know more than anything what it feels like. And I really feel like I'm going to find out by January 1, 2011.

Neil

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Day 12: Being Bad

There have been moments in the past few days that I have been bad and eaten bad stuff. I went to a Simpsons trivia contest at a bar tonight (we placed 4th out of 24 teams!) and I ended up ordering... yes... bar food. Fish and chips. I had some bad food at Sketchfest as well. Pizza and cheesecake. I also had a chicken biscuit sandwich on Sunday morning before the Master of Inventions shoot. Not big servings, but bad food nonetheless.

It should be noted that I'm not doing this too much, but definitely more often than I did during Week 1. But I am still eating quite well during the day. Fruit for breakfast and lettuce-wrapped boneless/skinless chicken breast for lunch. It will be interesting to see how this affects my weight loss progress come the weigh-in on Friday. I still have a few days to correct these slip ups. I also do not think I'm going to give myself a 'free' meal this week; I've had enough to qualify as already having had it.

My right arm has been hurting from the Wii Sports action, so I'm thinking I should look into getting the Wii Fit already. One downside with having the Wii Sports is that it exercises your arms well enough (mainly one arm) but that's about it. Definitely better than sitting around but not getting any sort of 'complete' workout. I shall see if I can find the package in stores this weekend.

I will be posting a nice entry tomorrow about living my entire life overweight. It should be a good read! Stay tuned.

Neil

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Day 10: Just a thank you!

I just wanna give a quick thanks to those of you who have been sending eating tips and offering recipe ideas and your words of encouragement. You guys rule! I'm gonna start using them and posting the results on this hear blog soon.

Cell Camp is on a bit of a hiatus now that our Chicago Sketchfest performances are done, so I am looking forward to having a more time to do my own stuff, including this experience and some more creative projects down the road.

I should be in bed.

Neil

Friday, January 08, 2010

Day 8: The Weigh In - Week 1

You may be noticing that I'm not writing in my blog every day like I said less than a week ago. For that I apologize, but most of my entries this week would probably be incoherent gobbledy-gook. BUT.. the busyness has subsided.

What a week it has been! I am almost at 100 percent again, health-wise. Performed in two shows last night! Got a lot of great feedback. I hung out pretty late and ended up coming into work late because I was so tired. It was quite a day; I sent out an email that's going to make me dread coming into work on Monday. I hate when I do that to myself but I couldn't put off the bad news any longer. I hate worrying about work outside of work so I'm hoping I can have a peaceful weekend.

Anyway, it's been a week since my first blog entry, so it's time for the weigh in...

STARTING WEIGHT (1/1): 254.
CURRENT WEIGHT (1/8): 248.
Weight loss this week: 6 lb.
Total weight loss: 6 lb.

Yes, I lost six pounds in the first week! I know you lose the most pounds in the first week and it's just going to get harder, but it's very encouraging, especially since I didn't exercise this first week. Tonight was my "guilt-free meal" (ie meal where I just ate whatever.) I had a frontega chicken at Panera and I barely had the chips that came with it. I thought about having a "guilt-free day" once every two weeks, but maybe I'll just have a "guilt-free meal" once a week.



And, of course, the big news is that I bought myself a Wii tonight. I love this thing already. I'm so glad it comes with Wii Sports because I'm going to have to get by with that for a while as I save up for the whole Wii Fit package. I worked up quite a sweat tonight and I didn't even BOX.

I mean really, Nintendo. Kudos to you for making a video game system that's cool to play AND healthy to do. You did it. And I will take advantage TEN-FOLD. Mwahhahhahahhahhha!!

N

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Day 5: Did I Mention It Was A Busy Week?

Last night I fell asleep before I had a chance to blorg. Doop.

Tonight was a brief show and then a tech rehearsal for Cell Camp's show this Thursday. It was the first time I was out with friends in a pub since the routine started. Have you ever been to the Fizz Bar in Chicago? They have some the absolute best burgers in Chicago and you never hear about them. And they're served on a pretzel bun. Man oh man. And... AND... they serve this fried potato salad that is to die for. If you've never had it, it tastes 100 times better than it sounds, and it sounds pretty good.

I watched people eat these dishes tonight. And drink beers. While I had me some water. And it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be.

As this week has been constant performance-related outings, I've been stopping at Subway and ordering the same 6" sandwich every time. Sweet Onion Chicken Teriyaki, no cheese. So good. With Diet Coke and baked potato chips. They had no baked chips at the Subway I went to tonight, so I got no chips at all. And. It. Was. Fine.

I wonder how many different Subways I can go to in Chicago. There's 25,000 in the USA. Does anyone have these statistics? I'm curious.

Til tomorrow,
Neil

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Day 3: The Hunger Returns + Trying New Food

I'm about 85% better from my illness which, of course, now means I'm hungrier. Luckily, I got up late, left the house right away and didn't get back home until around 6pm. I drank a lot of water when I was sick and I do think I need to keep that up to keep my hunger down.

Sometimes I get down on some of my friends who quit smoking and then give it up, but this really isn't much different. I bet it's just as much of a challenge for me to eat right than it is for them to quit smoking. Food is an addiction, too. I like being happy and I gotta admit, I really feel happy when I taste good food. Most of the good food I eat is just terrible for me. I like a lot of food, too. I don't like everything, though, and honestly, a lot of what I don't like is actually good for me.

So, I'm on the hunt for some tasty new hot meals that are actually good for me. The issue with a lot of "healthy" hot meals is that they are high in sodium, so I'm trying to avoid that. I don't mind having to take some prep time to make it either. I warn you, though, if you wish to share some recipes: There have been times in the past when I have had people tell me, "Try this dish. It's delish!" and I try it and it is, in fact, not delish. In fact, it's the reverse... it's, um... delash.

Til tomorrow.
Neil

Saturday, January 02, 2010

Day 2: Thinking Healthy is Hard When You're Sick

Is it just me, or did everyone get sick this week?? I ended 2009 sick and started 2010 sick, not making this the easiest start to this endeavor.

My four-day weekend was mostly spent in front of this box, which sounds like it could be great, but I have work from my full-time job that I have to get done by Monday. A lot of it. All on the computer. All day. And I'm sick, so really shouldn't leave the house. So these first few days have been a trial.

I did leave the house today because I needed to go to the bank. I got a 6" sub at Subway and went grocery shopping. I came home and cooked! Boneless, skinless chicken breasts are a pretty good bet. I made a salad out of that and this thing called lettuce (it's pronounced let-us, not let-youse). I did a decent job with that and I'm set for the week with cooked healthy chicken meat for lunch at work.

Sitting on my ass at home all day makes me want to snack, of course. I really want salty shit. OH MAN. Chips? They would be so nice. Maybe some chocolate. But I know I'd want that so I got some lame apples, oranges and bananas. And I made some hard-boiled eggs. So that's what I've been snacking on. And I made it through the day... barely. :)

I managed to get a $250 check today from my car insurance company for my deductable related to my car accident in August 2008. What? Geez, I'd get in more accidents if I knew I'd be getting surprise checks. If I had a car anymore. So, the intention of getting a Wii is becoming a reality with this sweet, sweet check. I'm going to pick it up next weekend since I will have no time at home this week.

I've got a very busy week coming up indeed. I will be performing some all-new comedy Tuesday night at SketchTEST and twice on Thursday night with Cell Camp at Chicago Sketchfest. Come see us perform! I fall on my ass a few times!

I cannot wait to leave the house tomorrow. I've got a few rehearsals going on. I'm on the mend and looking forward to not being bored on my ass at home thinking about food.

Neil!

Friday, January 01, 2010

Day 1 in The Year We Make Contact

Hello friends!!

Did you know that losing weight is the number one New Year's resolution in this country? Yes, what I'm doing is nothing special, but it is something I need to do.

I'm just going to start out up front with explaining that I've always been overweight. Always. I think the last time I was a "normal" height-to-weight ratio was... I don't know... seven years old? At any rate, it's been a long time and I've never known what it's like to live in a better body than what I've given myself. I'm a kid who essentially grew up on Happy Meals more than healthy meals. Don't get me wrong: My parents did provide healthy options, but I rarely took them.

I'm not doing this to "fit in". Anyone who has met me knows I have very little issue fitting in or feeling comfortable around new people. I also believe that people can be beautiful no matter what size or shape they are. There are plenty of overweight people I know who are ten times more beautiful than a lot of thin people I know.

This is really set up as a challenge for me. I want to see if I can do this. I've tried this before and never quite made it. Many times I never came close and gave up early. Wherever I have failed in the past, I intend to succeed in 2010. There is something different about this year. What it is, I'm not exactly sure. It's one of those ridiculous gut feelings that really has no logic to it and probably shouldn't be trusted. But I'm doing it.

Every day, I will be posting something new. These will mostly be updates on my experience and history of dealing with my weight issues, but I will also likely just randomly post about whatever is on my mind.

Every week, I will post a weigh-in. I will not do it daily because my weight fluctuates so often on a daily basis that it will drive me crazy.

My goal is to weigh around 180 pounds by January 1, 2011. 365 days. 52 weeks.

Thank you for your support.

CURRENT WEIGHT: 254.