July 04, 2006

Let’s face it – I’m fat. At five feet nine inches and two hundred forty odd pounds – I’m fat. At age thirty (fifteen freakin’ years ago!) I weighed one-sixty. How I managed to gain ninety pounds in fifteen years is beyond me.

Actually it isn’t beyond me. Ninety pounds in fifteen years is six pound a year or half a pound a month. All the nutritionists say that there are 3500 calories in a pound of weight, so doing the math, I’ve only been eating an extra 1700 or so calories a month for fifteen years. That’s roughly 57 calories a day more than my bodies needs. Calories scale.

In all likelihood I’ve been eating just enough to maintain my weight for the last five or six years, but even over ten years, the monthly gain is small compared to the sum. Reversing this trend has already been started. About three weeks ago I stated tracking everything I ate, the calories and fat grams of everything, and my daily weight. Using a spreadsheet I’ve got a five-day running average of my weight and it is creeping down. Tracking my intake immediately showed me that the three to four sodas and a candy bar or two that I consumed everyday was adding six to eight hundred calories to my daily diet. Multiply eight hundred by seven days in a week, and you have fifty-six hundred extra calories. A week. Over a pound and a half extra a week.

Or, looked at from a losing perspective, a pound and a half potential loss per week. I can pretty easily get my daily intake down to fifteen hundred to eighteen hundred calories per day, and that seems to lower enough that I am losing weight. My goal: two hundred pounds or less. At a pound a week I should be there late next spring. Extra workouts (walking mostly) on top of my twice weekly martial arts workout will help too.

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Mark H. Nichols

I am a husband, cellist, code prole, nerd, technologist, and all around good guy living and working in fly-over country. You should follow me on Twitter.