5 Week Challenge: Losing Weight and Gaining Health

Updated

It’s been a long time since I got on the health train. I figured it was about time to start yet another serious challenge for myself. This time, I am aiming for a 5 week challenge to lose as much weight as I can.

And even though I have good intentions, the real trick is to stick with it this time. I don’t have the best track record when it comes to challenging myself.

Sure, I do well for the first few weeks. But then it pitters out and I start slacking again.

Let’s see if I can maintain the entire challenge this time. I’m feeling good and ready to burn!




Putting Together My 5 Week Challenge

What is going to make this challenge any different than the last ones I tried? Well, this time I am heading out to Kansas City Missouri for a WordCamp in June.

This is the first time I’m specifically in the public eye since I had to close down the computer center. I am representing my client, so I need to look and feel my very best. And being self-conscious about my appearance will affect my performance.

So, what am I going to do to maximize the experience?

What to Eat

The first thing I am focusing on is my eating habits. I do great on my Net 600 Calorie diet until after dinner. This is when I tend to get extremely snacky and will munch on just about anything.

My Net 600 Calorie diet lets me eat just about anything I want. How it works is that my Fitbit records physical activity throughout the day and adjusts the calories I can eat based on my calorie burn.

So in reality, I’m actually eating closer to 2,000 calories total.

What’s the point of this? Well, on days I am less active, I am allowed a lower calorie amount. This means if I want those after-dinner snacks, I need to work for them.

The trick to this is managing what I eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Obviously, I don’t want to pig out on one of these meals as it means I will get less for one of the others.

It’s all about balance.

Physical Activity

I’m sticking with my plan of burning calories playing the Xbox Kinect. I know it works as I’ve staved off all the weight I’ve lost so far by just being active on a daily basis playing those games.

For this 5 week challenge, I am also adding the dumbbells and resistance bands. And since I am planning on buying a membership to the local rec center for my girls to go swimming this summer, I’ll jump on some of those weight machines as well.

I don’t merely want to lose weight. It would be nice to have a bit of muscle mass to accompany the smaller frame. I don’t want to look like Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, but I’ve felt the impact of muscle mass and stamina in everyday life.

For instance, I am far more committed to yard and housework. I don’t get nearly as exhausted as I did before.

And lastly, I want to reclaim my top 1,000 position in Exercise.com. The only way to do that is to increase my workouts with weights.

Recording My Progress Through YouTube

I was inspired recently by Chris Desatoff to do a daily video of my progress. I’ve mentioned using YouTube before to help with motivation, and it’s a great tool to help you look back and feel accomplished when things look grim.

In reality, I stopped putting in effort for fitness once I stopped making my weekly vlogs. So I can say without a doubt, they made a huge impact on my mentality for losing weight and getting in shape.

Besides, I want to start getting more active on the Crossing Colorado YouTube channel anyway. Maybe this will help guide the channel into something more.

Starting Measurements

OK, so let’s take a look at my starting measurements. This data is collected from my Renpho scale. It detects various body compositions such as weight, muscle mass and hydration levels.

  • Weight: 220.4
    I don’t really have a long way to go. I’m naturally a big guy anyway, so I doubt I will go much further below 200 based on sheer muscle mass, not too toot my own horn.
  • Water: 49.4%
    I’ve always had a problem with staying properly hydrated. It’s true I drink a lot of coffee, but I need more water throughout the day.
  • Subcutaneous Fat: 27.8%
    Subcutaneous fat is the body fat that is stored in the skin. This is not the same as visceral fat. However, I do need to work on the visceral fat in my midsection as well.
  • Body Fat: 31.5%
    I would like to get into the 8% range for body fat. Essentially, it’s the same level as the average athlete. Even if I consider myself a Kinect athlete, it’s better than where I currently am.

Now weight fluctuates wildly from day to day. So I am going to take the weigh-ins with a grain of salt. In reality, I’m going to focus more on images and inch measurements.

In five weeks, I’ll compare these numbers and see how well I, or my scale, work.

Being More Active on Instagram

One of the things I miss is the encouragement I receive from those who follow me on Instagram. Usually, it’s family and friends who tell me how far I’ve come and how good I look comparatively.

And since Instagram feeds directly into Facebook, my friends and family help keep me motivated there as well.

The problem is my life is a bit boring. I don’t want to be one of those Instagrammers who just show images of food every day. Which means I need to be a bit more creative when sharing my progress.

Getting More Active in the Blog

Perhaps one of my failings over the past several months for weight loss centers around the lack of content I’ve put onto this blog. Or maybe it’s merely a symptom of my lack of commitment to anything.

Starting today, I’m going to be more conscientious about writing content and adding more to the website. It seems to help me keep focused on health and fitness. And I kind of fell apart for the past couple of months.

I need to get my superhero complex back, and I think writing about health and fitness helps.

Addressing My Downfalls

Failure

Now, I need to address my failings over the past couple of months. Admitting there is a problem is the first step to fixing anything.

And yes, I do have my problems.

The Wrong Mindset

Lately, I’ve had the wrong mindset. I’ve been stuck in the whole, “Why bother” frame of mind. And that’s a bad thing. Without being positive about health and fitness, you’ll have a much harder time succeeding.

I need to get the passion back…or at least more of it than I have in the past. Perhaps I should go back and read some of my positive and inspirational blog posts.

Night Snacking

I know I have a problem with snacking at night. And I am now resolved to do something about it. But it means nothing if I don’t take the steps to actually do something.

If I keep myself busy, I tend to snack less. This means fewer episodes of shows on Netflix and maybe more gameplay. For instance, I don’t snack nearly as often if I am engaged in Diablo III or streaming on Twitch.

Being Easily Influenced by Others

One of my biggest problems is being influenced by the behaviors of others. Peer pressure even affects those in their 40s. But, I think I can turn that around a bit.

Perhaps I can influence others into making better choices. First of all, we need to stop the midnight runs to Walmart or Safeway for a tub of ice cream.

Let’s Do This 5 Week Challenge!

Statistically speaking, I should lose about 15 pounds within this 5 week challenge. This is according to how I lose weight when I’m actually doing good on a diet and getting exercise.

However, I feel I can do better without putting my body at risk or starving myself. So, here we go. Let’s see what I can accomplish if I actually put in the effort to do so.




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Michael Brockbank

Since 2015, Michael has put in the effort to lose more than 80 pounds by gamifying fitness and eating proper portion sizes. He conducts extensive research into various health and fitness products to provide the best answers possible according to his own experience and knowledge.

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