Saturday, July 25, 2009


Weight: 265.5
BMI: 45.47


After a ridiculous--and unwarranted--gain (I got up to 270.7 ), I've managed to work my way back down. I could explain the ups and downs, but a graph is just so much easier:

Today, I fly out to San Diego. I'll be out of my element and away from calories I can count, but I think I'll still be okay. I'm bothered by the upcoming lack of scale, but I'll find some way to muddle through.

For now, I actually need to run and finish packing.

But before I go, 265.5! That's -12.5 pounds. It means I've lost 4.5% of my body weight and 2.15 points of BMI. If that's not something to smile about, I don't know what is.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

We need to talk

Weight: 268.2
BMI: 46.03

Okay, scale, you don't like me and I don't like you, but this is really getting ridiculous. Three straight days of gains. Three days of below 1300 calories. THREE DAYS OF GAINS. 1.4 pounds up. What are you trying to do to me?

And so the battle continues.

I won't give in. I'm going to stick to the diet. I'm going to lose the weight. You're going to lose this one, scale. Three days of taunting won't be enough to make me give up. And guess what, sucker? Four days won't either. Just try it. (Okay, I'm sorry I said it. Don't try it! Please!)

I won't lie. My spirit feels broken right now. I'm not going to eat away my problems or go off course, but I don't feel motivated like I used to.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Feeling All Kinds of Icky


Weigh in for yesterday, 7/20:
Weight: 267.2
BMI: 45.86

Weigh in for today:
Weight: 268.0
BMI: 46.00

Well, I just feel all kinds of gross.

I haven't gone off track in terms of food: 1200 calories/day. I've been doing a solid job with exercise, too. I did 30 minutes of elliptical on Saturday, 35 on Sunday, and a full 45 yesterday/Monday. And yet, the scale goes up up up. By 1.2 pounds in the past two days.

Normally, I would have to tell myself that it's all right and these things happen and that if I stick with the program the pounds will eventually come off. I try to just find the motivation, constantly reminding myself of that one thought.


I know it's true. I know the weight will come off eventually if I keep down the right path. But I don't need to tell myself it for motivation. I'm not scared any more. I know I can do this. I had my parents here this past weekend. We went out to eat. They bought me ridiculously fatty things. Delicious and amazing leftovers and treats got put in my fridge. And it didn't shake me one bit.

I want this. I want it badly. More than I've wanted anything in a long, long while. Two days ago, every inch of me hurt, and I dragged myself to the gym anyway and spent 5 more minutes working out than I had the day before. Yesterday, I felt incredibly, amazingly sore, and guess how I responded? By getting up and going to the gym, working out 10 minutes more than the last time, and going even faster than I had. I'm sore and in pain and pretty darn hungry, but it's okay.

I can do this. I want to do this. And I will do this.

The scale will come along eventually. In the mean time, I'm going to go kick ass.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Fun with Graphs

As I've brought up a few times, I keep an Excel chart of my weight loss. I do this for several reasons:

1. I'm a nerd.
2. Recording day-to-day makes me more accountable
3. It's good to look at when I'm losing motivation
4. I have a lot of fun doing so

Today, I'm going to share some of the fun graphs I have, why I have them, what they mean, and how they help.

The most basic graph I keep is just one of my overall weight loss progress. As of today it looks like:

I've been lucky thus far in mostly having consistent losses, but that's not always the case. While the scale is a good overall judge of progress, it's a very noisy instrument. A lot of the time it'll pick up that your dinner last night was salty, or that you're bloated, or that you're dehydrated or that it's that time of the month, or a variety of other things rather than the actual truth of what's going on. This is the reason many people will just weigh themselves once a week: they just want to get an overview of the numbers, they don't want to deal with the day to day noise.

While I see the appeal of that, getting a reading once a week doesn't make your readings more accurate: it just gives you one data point to go on, and you don't know if it's actually your real weight showing up. There is, however, a solution for that: the moving average. So, I have a chart that shows my real weight, and the five day moving average. (For the first 1-4 days, I did an average of how many days I had data for.) As long as you're losing weight, even if you have days you go up and days you go down, the moving average should head consistently downward. Take a look:

Notice how on July 10th, even though I gained .8 pounds and saw a sharp spike in my day to day weight, the moving average of my weight was still falling. The moving average tends to be more valuable if you are having more up and down fluctuations than I am at the moment, but I still like having it for when I do get those--and if my previous attempts at weight loss are any indication, I eventually will.

Now, neither of those are the coolest chart I have.

One of the big things they advocate at Spark People is attaching deadlines to your weight loss goals. Some sort of "A wish + a deadline = goal!" cheese. To a certain extent, I think this isn't optimal: set your goal too low and you end up not really challenging yourself; aim too high and you're in for a sea of disappointment. If you use Spark to track your weight (or Fitday, and perhaps other weight loss software I'm not familiar with), they'll have one static line for your goal. If you're not closely racing the line, it's really not all that helpful: if you're well under or well over it, it's really not showing much about how your most recent progress is comparing to what you need to get to. (Spark will also only track one weight goal at a time, which I find relatively annoying.)

As of now, I have three goals: one short term, one long term, and one long term stretch.

My short term goal is to get to 250lbs by September 15th. The date is arbitrary, but the poundage is meaningful. 250 will mean I've lost 28 pounds, or 10% of my starting body weight. (Technically, the 10% mark will be met at 250.2, I rounded.) 250 is also just a big milestone number, and it seems to work in many ways. The 9/15 date was picked just by playing in calculators: 10/1 seemed too easy, 9/1 too harsh.

My long term goal is to no longer be obese at my brother's wedding, which will mean getting to 175 by August 14th, 2010. My long term stretch goal is to not be overweight by my brother's wedding, which would mean hitting 145 or below by the same 8/14/2010 goal. To be 100% honest, I would be overjoyed and incredibly proud of myself with either. For now, they're just giving me benchmarks.

My favorite chart makes use of all three goals. It's aim is to answer the question of "how much sustained weight would I need to lose per week to hit my goals of 250, 175, and 145?" It looks like this:

I'm also going to show you guys this as a table, since I think it's helpful to look at both:

There's a column for date, weight, days till 9/15, the average amount of weight I'd need to lose each week to get to 250 as of that day, the days till my brothers wedding, the average amount of weight I need to lose each week to get to be not obese, and the same for not overweight.

What I like so much about this chart is that I can see how well I'm doing relative to how well I need to do to hit my goal. Every day I lose .4 pounds or more (the equivalent of 2.8lbs/week), all my goals become easier. When I lose .3 pounds a day (2.1/week), my short term goal and the "not obese" goal are both easier, but the road to my stretch goal becomes slightly harder. .2 pounds day (1.4/week) and everything becomes harder.

But the best part is, those rules aren't constant. Not too long ago, a .3 pound day was bad for my short term and stretch goals. When I started my short term goal, it meant losing 2.8 pounds a week. Because I've been above pace so much, I now only need to lose a smidge more than 2 pounds a week. Progress!

There are a few reasons I like this standard so much. One of them is that it's forward-looking: all the other stats just judge progress thus far. This one is more about how each day will impact the rest of my journey. Essentially, every day I do an awesome job makes the days ahead easier.

The thing about my goals is, while they're there, and I like using them to measure progress and stay on top of myself, they're not really what I care about. Yes, it would be nice to look fabulous in my brother's wedding pictures: I'm going to have to see them for years and years to come. But, relative to how much I care about the reasons I'm actually doing this, it's meaningless. I care a bit, but it's not really what I care about.

I care about my future health: I don't want to get diabetes, or heart disease, or all those other things that being obese makes me more likely to get. Most importantly, I don't want my weight to hold me back any more.

I want to sit on airplanes without feeling bad for the person sitting next to me. I want to be able to run if I need to and not get winded. I want to go to the beach and not feel like I shouldn't be wearing a bathing suit. I want to not be scared of amusement park rides. I want to just live my day to day life without there being things I can't do because I'm too damn fat.

The goals and charts are just window dressing, they're not what matters. But they help me get through the day to day, and keep me solid when I want to stray. The charts help prove what I inherently know: each day I do a good job makes the next day easier.

A Quick Catch All Post

Weigh in for yesterday, 7/18:
Weight: 267.0
BMI: 45.83

Weigh in for today:
Weight: 266.8
BMI: 45.79

Not only have I not gained with my parents here, I've actually managed to keep losing. Not only did I hit the -10lbs mark, I flew past it. As of this very moment, I am 11.2 pounds lighter than when I started this journey. How awesome is that?

I promise a full gym story at some later date, but for now I just want to share that I did, in fact, go to a gym yesterday. I worked my ass off too. It was all around excellent. What's important is that I went (despite being really, really scared to) and I feel all right going again.

11.2 pounds down, many, many pounds to go. Progress!

Friday, July 17, 2009

A new low and food choices

Weight: 268.2
BMI: 46.03

Wowza. 268.2! I actually feel, for the first time, like I belong in the 260s. I'm incredibly, incredibly happy with that number. It means I've now lost 9.8 pounds in total. That's 3.53% of my bodyweight and 1.68 points of BMI. And that is pretty damn awesome. I honestly was smiling all the way to work. I'm so, so happy about it.

Yesterday I did very well foodwise, albeit making one slight mistake at dinner. I had a very light breakfast and lunch, and snacked on baby carrots at work. Friends and I were going to see the new Harry Potter immediately after work (it's excellent, you should see it), and it was decided to go to Subway for a quick dinner before the movie. Yesterday afternoon I spent a good bit of time on the Subway site, pouring over the nutritional information trying to make an ideal choice. I debated between going for the extravagant 380 calorie Subway melt, going with a turkey sandwich with light mayo (280 for the sandwich plus 50 for the mayo for 330), or, what I decided would be my choice, a 290 cal mayo-less ham and turkey. I knew I wouldn't be able to enjoy a turkey sandwich with neither cheese nor mayonnaise, so I'd ruled that out early on, but I thought maybe, just maybe, having two different types of meat on the sandwich might make up for the lack of delicious, delicious cheese and condiments.

So, when we got there, I ordered the ham and turkey. And then, in that second when he asked me if I wanted any sauces, I said yeah, just a little bit of light mayo. I stopped him to make sure it was just a bit, but it was still, in the end, either 50 or 10 calories more than I really needed (depending on how you count). Lyn, over at Escape from Obesity, had this great post about how you need just a split second of determination to do the right thing. And where she passed her test, I failed mine.

But the damage wasn't bad, I was still under my limit for the day, and I'm not going to beat myself up over it. I did the right thing for the rest of the night, refusing the many offers from my friends to have a few pieces of candy or a handful of popcorn. I did, overall, a really great job resisting temptation last night.

As I write this, I'm about an hour away from going out to a colleague's going away lunch. It will be challenging, to say the least. We're going to this pizza place called Ella's, which of course has no calorie stuff listed online. I've spent probably more time looking at the menu then I'd like to confess, and still haven't decided what I'm going to get. I know it might sound crazy to those of you who are used to being healthy, but I really don't want to call attention to the fact that I'm on a diet just yet, especially not to my colleagues. I know, I know, telling people is great and will help build you a support system and you'll be less likely to fall back and whatever else, but I'm honestly just still too embarrassed to at this point. I think ordering a salad would do just that, so I don't think I'm going to do so.

So, pizza it will be. The question between plain and veggie is up in the air. Plain pizza is my standard, and it's my favorite. Getting one of the varieties with vegetables on it—of those options I've been leaning towards wild mushroom—would be healthier and get more nutrients in. I'd also like it substantially less, and thus probably eat less of it. On the other hand, if I'm going out spending money and calories on pizza, it seems kind of silly to not get pizza I'd like. I'm not saying I should go crazy and order the four cheese one, or eat the whole thing, but …

I don't know. I'm possibly making excuses. I'm going to have a tough night (and a tough weekend) in terms of food since my parents are going to be here. I think I'll be able to at least somewhat minimize my food exposure by telling them I have lots of work, but there's no way around the fact that I'm simply going to be eating more than I've been eating since this diet began.

I know, I know, this is why you should tell people. I just don't quite feel ready to.

The worst part about this may be that I'm so damn close to 268, and with that the accomplishment of having dropped a full 10 pounds. It would be a big achievement, and I want to get there. Since at this point I'm just hoping not to gain up to the 270s while they're here, it's going to be tricky.

Hopefully I'll be strong, and even if I can't hit 268 this weekend, I'll hit it next week. And then, hopefully, I'll be able to not gain massive amounts of weight in San Diego.

It could happen, right?

I've got a long, long road ahead.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

On weigh ins and motivation

Weight: 269.3
BMI: 46.22

In recent mornings when I've hopped on the scale, I've always been quite certain that the number would go back up. This morning was no different. I stared at the glass monster that lurks in my bathroom for a short bit, resigned at the bad news it had for me. I tapped it, let it zero, and hopped on. And there, staring back at me, was not bad news, not dreadful news, not even "no progress news." Looking back at me instead was .4 pounds less than yesterday: the slow, and steady march of progress.

It's just plain weird.

In my life, I've seriously attempted to lose weight precisely two other times. Each time, my morning weigh in was filled with anticipation. Each time, I was working *hard* at my weight loss. I was moving as much as I could, eating healthfully, writing prolifically, and generally putting my heart and head into losing the damn weight. The scale was my (imperfect, noise-filled) progress checker. Each day, I cared deeply about what would show up, and worried if it would be an up or a down, and how great any loss would be. The morning weigh in had mystery and excitement: a daily battle of expectations vs. reality.

My weigh ins these days are nothing of the sort. Each morning I wake up, and I'm pretty damn sure the scale is going to go up. It's not even a question. And since I started 10 days ago, every morning but one I've been wrong.

I don't really seem to believe that I'm actually losing weight.

One of the things that's weird about this "don't say diet" of mine is that, well, I'm not really on board with it. I mean, I've been very much not overeating (to the point where I have, in fact, been undereating). I'm certainly eating less than I'm burning, so by the rules of physics and logic, I should be losing weight. And, what with the world tending to follow those rules and whatnot, I am in fact losing weight. I just don't believe it.

I think the main problem is that I started this diet, essentially, on a lark. Late last Tuesday evening, I hopped on the scale in my bathroom and just thought, "hmm, 278, that's a pretty high number. Maybe I should diet." But I wasn't really being all that serious about it. I messed around and set up an excel spreadsheet—one of these days we'll discuss what a giant nerd for numbers I am—and sort of just let it be. The next day I weighed myself, I was down a bit, and sort of decided "I guess I will go ahead and diet." And I did.

There was no moment of reckoning, no spark to get started, just a blah, meh, I guess I might as well. And that's not really a good way to start a diet.

On the other hand, 10 days of sustained healthy food choices and an 8.7 pound loss are, absolutely, a way to start one. I'm moving along pretty well, I've found some goals and motivation, and I've been able to keep going even through some pretty heavy temptation. And I've just kept muddling through, slowly but surely sticking to things over the past week and a half.

I just need to believe that I am actually doing this.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

And the scale goes down again

Weight: 269.7
BMI: 46.43

First, I suppose, we ought to talk numbers. 269.7 is not up from 270.5. It is, in fact, down by .8 pounds. So, a small victory there. I still don't feel like I've really *earned* this weight loss yet, and I'm certain it will disappear shortly. There will be no "goodbye 270s!" victory dance just yet, mostly because I don't really accept that I've bid the 270s goodbye yet. They will, I'm certain, be back.

At a certain point I'm going to have to accept that at least some of this is not phantom weight loss. Yes, dropping from 275 to 271.9 in one day was shocking. Yes, when it happened it probably wasn't all a real loss. But, at this point I'm starting to think it's unlikely that my actual real weight is 275 and that these are only phantom pounds slipping away.

But unlikely doesn't mean impossible, and I do think I'm weighing in these days at less than I really weigh. It's just not conceivable that I've really lost this much considering that I haven't actually been working out much, just cutting calories. And while I'm probably unlikely to go all the way back up to 275 at this point, I think heading back up to the 270s is eminently likely. Maybe the .2 pound loss I had the day before was real, maybe the .5 pound losses the two days before that were even real, but .8 in a single day considering I did no exercise is just highly unrealistic. Maybe if I'd spent 4 hours or something hiking.

As far as other diet updates, I was planning on having to go to a policy forum today and was anticipating that I'd need to eat lunch there. At the last minute my boss asked me to cut the forum to finish up a quick project for him. In some ways this is good, because it means I didn't end up having to eat one of the god knows how many calories sandwiches that were going to be served. However, since I planned on going, I skipped breakfast, and only brought 13 baby carrots to work, figuring the sandwich from the event would be taking up most of my calories allowance for the morning and afternoon.

Instead, all the food I've got for the whole work day is those 13 baby carrots. I've already eaten them, and I'm famished. Even though it's quite a bit of fiber and volume considering they're a grand total of 50 calories, in an absolute sense, it's just not much food. So, I'm very, very hungry. And I'm going to be hungry all afternoon. But, what can you do?

I'm not sure how I'll work food for tonight. Since I finally finished that roast beef I've been slightly adrift in terms of what I should do for food. I had a piece of the frozen chicken last night, but there was sort of a stinky smell from the bag. So, even though I ate that piece and am not feeling sick or anything, I went ahead and tossed the rest. The jar of tikka masala sauce is now open—and has an expiration date of 7/22—so I should perhaps try to eat that, but I'll be honest and say it's pretty unappealing at the moment.

What I also have, that is also expiring soon, is barbecue chicken and 97% fat free hot dogs. Now, I don't have hot dog buns for the hot dogs, but I could just use a regular piece of (reduced calorie) bread. At just 45 calories a dog they're not at all expensive to eat. I could in fact eat two hot dogs, each on a piece of light style bread, and put 10 calories of ketchup on each, and only be at 200 calories.

I may, in fact, do just that, because that sounds like a really good amount of food for the number of calories it would cost. Of course, as that would put me at only 250 calories for the day, I should probably plan on having a bit more. As my possible addition, I'm going to allow myself a tuna melt or any variation thereof. 120 calories in the can of tuna, 80 calories in a slice of cheddar, 60 calories of miracle whip, and 90 calories in light style bread. That would be adding an additional 350 calories to the day, and ring me up to 600 for the whole day. Which is, you know, few, but still substantive.

I perhaps should eat more than that, and perhaps will, but I'm also not going to force myself to if I end up not being hungry after the tuna. After all the years of overeating, I'm not going to stuff down food just to meet a daily 1200 calorie goal. It might not be the healthiest thing in the world, but so long as I'm not doing it regularly, I'll be fine. It will just be an one-time bonus 600 calorie deficit.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

So, I took a before photo . . .

A few before photos, actually. They're really bad. Like, really bad. Like I feel terrible I've made everyone look at me for all these years.

No, I'm not sharing.

Maybe when I've lost a bit and want to share progress I will. But for now they can be my icky "omg gross" secret. I intentionally wore very tight clothes for the photos to make the difference easier to see later on, but YEESH. I'm very, very sad faced at the moment.

So, when I started up this whole diet thing, I joined Spark People again under a quickie name that I just made to set up an account. I'd been using that for the past few days, for tracking purposes, but had been intentionally not participating in the community. A little over a year ago I lost a little under 20 pounds using this account.

I'm excited to actually rejoin the Spark community. I still remember a few people from there fondly, and especially one of the groups called Done being the fat girl. So, I am excited to get back into that, and to get started again with everything there. My new account name over there is HalvingHadley, so please come on by and visit.

Since I'm not posting a before photo, I will instead post the current excel graph of my weight loss. I've definitely got a trend going:

Anyway, that's where I'm going to leave it for now. Have a nice night all, and I'll report in with a number tomorrow. (Or with random insomniac musings in a few hours.) Again, fearing a gain, but I suppose we'll see what happens.

Turbulence expected ahead

Thinking about it more, this was, really, a terrible time to decide to lose weight. I say that not as a way of turning back, or to indicate any plan to do so, but just to acknowledge the fact that, if I tried to come up with a list of suboptimal times to lose weight, this would probably be up there with the Wednesday before Thanksgiving.

I've got a few specific schedule challenges ahead, which I'll talk about below:

Policy forum lunch on 7/15: Tomorrow, we're hosting a policy forum. I have to go to it. In some ways, this is good. The chairs in the auditorium are a little on the tight side, and sitting in them always reminds me that I want to shed some pounds. However, after the forum there's going to be lunch, and I'm going to have to eat it. The lunch will be calorific sandwiches. I'm just going to have to suck it up and eat one.

Coworker going away lunch on 7/17: One of my coworkers is leaving soon to move to another state and another job. I like her bunches, and it’s very sad to see her go. On Friday, a few people have scheduled a going away lunch for her. I'm going to have to go—I want to go—and I'm going to have to eat food. I'll skip breakfast, eat something light, etc, but it'll certainly be more calories than I planned.

Parents in town 7/17-7/20: My parents are going to be in town this weekend. This will make things extremely challenging, to say the least. A visit from them means lots of my favorite foods from New York, lots of meals out, and a gigantic trip to the grocery store. I'm not looking forward to it. On Sunday, when I decided this diet was something I really wanted to stick with, I asked if they could maybe reschedule for some point later on the pretext of having massive amounts of work. They couldn't change their hotel reservation, so here they will be. It'll be difficult, and I might even gain a few, but I can aim to be way better than I'd previously been.

Conference in San Diego 7/26-7/31: I'm going to a conference out in San Diego for the last week of July, and I'm expecting it to be a very, very challenging week. I won't be able to weigh myself at all. I'll have no idea of the calorie content of any of the food. And oh, the temptation that awaits. Every morning, a croissant and pastry laden continental breakfast. Then an hour and a half later, temptation again as far as the eye can see. Then an hour and half after that, I'll be served an extravagant lunch. A mere two hours later, there will be cookies and brownies and other snack food. And a few hours after that, a reception with wine and hors d'oeuvres. Then, a two hour dinner, with probably three or four courses. A ton, ton, ton of food. And it's going to be like that, every day, for five days. Yeep. I'll need all the strength in the world. The inability to weigh myself combined with the massive amounts of temptation is just going to be all sorts of trouble.

San Diego will be the worst, but it's luckily still a bit away. I have time to get some momentum going. The conference is at a very nice resort, and I'm sure they'll have a fitness club that I'll be able to patronize if I so choose. There will also be, at the very least, lots of space for me to go on walks in. And walks I can and will do.

Anyway, those are the challenges I've got in the upcoming days. Will I be able to meet them? To thrive even with them? Will I just muddle through with not too many gains? Or will I be blown horribly off course ne'er to recover? Only time and strength of will shall tell.

Of brownies and weigh ins

Weight: 270.5
BMI: 46.43

I was pretty darn certain I was going to gain weight today. Not too many days ago, I dropped 3.1 pounds. I went from 275 to 271.9 in a single day. It was, I figured, unsustainable. My dieting experience is filled with fake drops. It would correct itself, I figured, the next day.

It didn't. Instead, I went down to 271.4, and continued waiting for the other shoe to drop. Next day (yesterday) I hit 270.7. Great, but unrealistic, since I knew my weight wasn't actually that low, and that I was in for a jump up.

Today, still no jump. I've got a much smaller loss than previous days, but a loss is a loss is a loss is a victory.

That wasn't the only reason I was expecting a gain. I didn't sleep much last night—I couldn't sleep so much I started a blog last night—and I ate, well, not more than I planned to, or more than I should've, but more than I needed.

Namely, I ate a brownie. A delicious fat witch brownie. A caramel witch, in fact. I'd ordered a whole bunch of brownies shortly before the 4th, with them getting shipped on the 6th. They arrived on the 8th, one day after I'd rather randomly decided I'd go on a diet because, what the heck.

I'd ordered, not a verifiable ton of brownies, but a lot. Six little ones, and six big ones: broken down as 4 baby brownies, 2 baby blondies, 3 caramel witches, 2 snow witches, and one big plain brownie. Now, this was a bit confusing: at this point, I wasn't really dedicated to the diet per se, it was still more of a lark. So sure, I ate a caramel witch that first night, but I decided to try and (mostly) do the right thing.

The next day, I gave three little ones away at work. I shipped a friend a care package with three little and two big. And, I kept 4 for myself. One I ate the first night. The other three I've had, one by one, over the course of the past 6 days. Last night was my last. It was delicious, but I'm glad they're gone.

Now, to be fair, I didn't eat much else yesterday. I had a 90 calorie chewy granola bar at work for breakfast, and an apple and packet of baby carrots for lunch. I'd been planning to bring slightly more, but I just forgot to put the stuff in my bag, so I just didn't eat more. For dinner, I had a roast beef sandwich comprised of two pieces of light style bread, two thin slices of roast beef that are about an ounce put together, and a dab (really, just a dab!) of miracle whip. Before the brownie (and accompanying large glass of milk), I was under 400 calories. With them, I was at 1088.

So, it wasn't, actually, a lot of food, but when I ate the brownie, I didn't need the brownie. I was a bit peckish, sure, but not the level of famished that I'm normally looking at when I start a meal. But I went for it, knowing I'd been obscenely good the rest of the day. It didn't turn out too poorly, so I guess that's just that.

There are no more brownies in the house, I lost .2 pounds yesterday, and I got a brand new blog out of the whole thing. Not too bad, eh?

And so, it starts . . .

All things must come to an end. Before, however, things may end, they must begin. And so, with that in mind, let's start.

My name is Hadley. I'm morbidly obese. On July 7th, when I started my weight loss journey, I weighed 278 lbs. I'm down a bit now--I hit a new low of 270.7 yesterday--but not by much. I have a lot of weight to lose. I need to hit 145 to no longer be overweight. 145 lbs is, essentially, a world, 58 leagues, four languages and two centuries away, so I won't be focusing on that number much. Sure, yeah, it would be nice and maybe I'll get there eventually. For now though, it's such an alien concept I can't even really focus on it.

So I don't. I focus on not being morbid.

Morbidly obese is one of those icky, icky terms. It's one of those shock terms. Scary words. A scary concept. And yet, also day-to-day reality for me and millions of others.

Right now, my goal is just to not be morbid.

For that, I need to get to 233 pounds. That's a trim 45 pounds away from my starting weight and 37.7 pounds from my current low. It's pretty far away, there's no doubt about it. If you do the standard 1-2 pounds a week with the occasional slip up, you could spend anywhere between half a year and a year on it. But, 233 pounds is something I can imagine. It's a place I can see myself getting. And it's a place I'm going to go.

So let us drink (water, of course) to the end of morbidity, and, one hopes, to delayed mortality.