December 2014

259 lbs - 219 lbs = 40

259 lbs – 219 lbs = 40

So . . . I didn’t want to report weight gain, so I waited to post November’s until I at least got even . . . but by then it was almost time for December’s post!

But I have some good news!  I am now 219, exactly 40 lbs. from the beginning.

And, I can bench press 70 lbs — 35 lb dumbbell in each hand, and I can Romanian Deadlift 135 lbs.  Of course my arms are still flabby, but I can see some definition in my arms, now.  That’s a pleasant surprise!

I’ve been avoiding the treadmill, as my left foot started getting fussy.  Heel spur. Plantar fasciitis.  So are you going to ask me about how those cheap shoes are going?

The silver lining is that it has forced me to explore other cardio at the gym. I am now confident enough to just get on any of the cardio machines and just try them out without permission or hand-holding.

So I wanted something that would replicate the ability to “run” and “walk” without having to punch buttons.  My way around that on the treadmill is just do high steps in place of “running,” but that’s harder for me to do on the elliptical.

The Cybex ARC trainer felt better than the elliptical, and the fact that I felt like I had to work to balance was actually a small plus.  I like going steady and progressively increasing the resistance.

But it is the Precor AMT that I’ve been using this month.  I can “sprint” for short periods of time and slow down and reduce my stride easily, without having to push any buttons.  I use the interval setting to change up the resistance.

So my daughter is giving a presentation next weekend:  “How to Make Holiday Chex Mix”  — oh, boy!  This week can’t go fast enough.  I’ve been eating way too much chex cereal this week, and it ain’t at breakfast time!  But I held steady at Thanksgiving.  My go-to girl for nutrition is A Black Girl’s Guide to Weight Loss, and she recommends reading The End of Overeating.

I’m finding the fitness aspect of weight loss to be rather enjoyable.  But I should read that overeating book.

I recently found a mom of 7 who lost 150 lbs and kept it off.



October 2014


I’m feeling pretty good!  I’ve reduced my hip measurement by 8 cm since July.  (That’s the booty measurement.)

I can tell.  My washing machine is in a corner of my bathroom, and I have to shimmy to get to it when the door is open.  In fact, when we first got it, I couldn’t shimmy around the door when it was open.  I still have to shimmy, but now I shimmy fairly easily.

I’ve found a sweet spot on the treadmill.  Now, I’m not a runner, and don’t really want to be, though I would like to do the Grand Blue Mile in 2016.  So I warm up 3.0 mph for five minutes, then on odd numbered minutes I do a high knees calisthenics for 10 seconds, and on even numbered minutes I do high knees for 20 seconds.  Then at 39:10 I cool down until 45:00.  This keeps my heart-rate in a zone where I’m breathing hard but not panting.  I do not adjust the mph.  I don’t need to.  High knees can be done in place.

I’d tried the treadmill version of C25K but was uncomfortable with all the fiddling with the speed of the machine.  I didn’t feel safe on it.  Wiping out on the treadmill will impede my progress in the gym!

Good thing I bought the cheap sneakers as disposable.  At 2.5 months, the shoe glue started deteriorating.  How sweet, making sure that I don’t second guess myself and keep them around past three months.  I have no grudges; these shoes have kept my feet, my knees, and my hips pain-free. I started this journey before my knees began to suffer too badly from the bodyweight.

So my favorite weight loss blogger, A Black Girl’s Guide to Weight Loss, has a challenge to reduce/eliminate added sugar intake.  Sneaky, bringing that on right when all the stores have replaced Back to School with Halloween.  I’m going to have to re-read her posts on sugar addiction every morning for encouragement (and a little fear).



September 2014

September 3, 2014 231 lbs

September 3, 2014
231 lbs

A note about the picture: I look sweaty because I’d just gotten back from the gym when this was taken. It was taken by my daughter, Frances. She says, “Mom, I hope people don’t look at your pictures [in reverse order] and think, ‘what has that lady been eating?!'”

Thanks, Frances.

Well, I’ve gotten through the stress of getting the big kids off to school without too much damage to the weight loss. Let’s get past “holding steady” and get back to decreasing calories in.

“If you don’t love it, you won’t stick to it.”

I understand this sentiment, and I admit I don’t “love” decreasing caloric intake. Though I don’t mind the treadmill like I thought I would, and I do like lifting stronger weights — 30 lb. dumbbells for chest presses is something I’m proud of!

I don’t “love” changing diapers, though I’ve changed 1,000+ over the years. I can be a big girl and tolerate inconvenience for a greater good.


August 2014


Progress shirt 111.5 cm waist

Progress shirt 111.5 cm waist

Waist:  111.5

hmm. Wrong direction!

This month I am wearing a progress shirt. I hope to be able to wear it to 4H meetings someday.

Why is this called InchwormByInchworm?

Inchworms move slowly, like improving fitness.

Also there is an exercise called the inchworm.


It seems to me that walking requires a lot of cushioning, as the heel takes a lot of pressure, and that pressure reverberates up the body.

But not-walking (I hesitate to call what I do “running”) with good form means you come down on the ball of the foot — gentler than the heel. And, you want to develop the muscles to support that movement — but cushioning babies the supporting muscles too much, which can lead to injury.

So I’m going to try something.  I have a $15 pair of shoes with a $5 pair of inserts for the heel and arch. Instead of replacing them at 500 miles or six months, I’ll replace them at 3 months.

That’s still 2/3 the cost of one pair of specialty shoes, which are supposed to be replaced 2x a year.

And I’ll probably wear them everyday, which is also a big no no in running shoes.  That’s where the Payless inserts really help.

If I start to feel pain I’ll know my hypothesis is wrong!


Ive been collecting clean eating and paleo recipes on the Evernote app. I’ve also been counting calories on the FitnessPal app. I didn’t count calories on vacation, but I am getting to know how my tummy feels throughout the day when I am eating within calorie guidelines. I gained 1 lb  on vacation. Back on the counting calories wagon. There is always such a discrpancy in calories between the food choices displayed on the app. I try my best and cross my fingers. It is like Gnosticism — secret knowledge!


July 2014

Progress dress 6/29/14

waist:  108 cm

How funny! I’m still in the “before picture” stage, yet I can really tell my swimsuit fits better. So I’m at the pool, how pleased I am about rocking the suit!

I use the C25K treadmill routine in some  of my cardio work. I would like to be able to run 6.2 mph for 30 min. That seems like an impossible dream! “A little faster” is a good short term goal.  I can do intervals between 3.1 mph and 4.8 mph on the treadmill, and I know I couldn’t do that 3 months ago.

Another goal is is doing one chin up by myself.So my intermediate goal is to progress to the chin up assist without my trainer having to get under the machine to push me up with the assist weight maxed out. I’m sure we look pretty funny! My strength goals for everything else is “a little more” (weight or reps) “than last time”.

I’m back on the wagon for counting calories. Though I have to say that working out is more enjoyable.

I saw an idea of keeping a journal of temptations that I resisted. I’m not turning this forum into that, but I was able to resist some fast food pizza today, thinking about my decision to post my waist measurement every month. Suddenly, “eating in secret” doesn’t seem so secret.


June 2014

This is the order of people who found out I was at the gym and losing weight:

1.  Husband

2. Best friend

3. Sister

4. Dad

5. Church friend

That’s all who knew for 4 months.

Then there was a family reunion that I could not attend, so I took pics of the kids so Dad could show the family. I’d been reading how journaling and photos are good fitness practices.  So I included a picture of myself.


Then I came out on Facebook. I got a tremendous positive response to the news that I’d gone from pant size 24 to 18.

Then my trainer posted a picture of me with the news that I’d lost 22 lbs and reduced my waist size by 10 in. More FB encouragement came pouring in.

That’s when I started this blog.


May 2014

Things I’ve bought:

yoga pants

– the girls hated seeing me in yoga pants, and were mortified that I would dare wear them in public at the gym. When I told the trainer this during the initial interview, she wrote down, “not much family support.”

Gym shoes

-found on sale at Dick’s. Actually the street shoes I bought at famous footwear are more comfortable and were cheaper!

gloves for weightlifting

-I was a little weirded out by handling weights and felt more comfortable with these on. When they started to fray I didn’t replace them. I got over it.

Heart rate monitor

– I like using this!  I read tons and tons about HR, only to decide the talk test is the most accurate. But 150 is a strenuous but not a killer HR for me, and I like looking at that number while I’m on the treadmill.

I thought I would hate the treadmill. I didn’t use it for a long time. But I like it. I crank up the incline and walk.  Sometimes steady, sometimes interval between brisk walking and slow walking.

Sports bra

I think as I lose weight that this is easier for me to shimmy into. It was the largest available at Dick’s, and still didn’t fit very well. I used it on Father’s Day as a girdle so I could fit into a dress I hadn’t worn in 5 years.