It’s already day 9 out of 70 in my blogging weight loss challenge versus Paul Piotrowski.
While it may seem like there is still a lot of time left, the fact is that when you’re doing a challenge that is time-based, time seems to go faster than ever.
Apart from just humiliation on the line, remember that if one of us doesn’t lose our weight quota on May 21st, 2010 at 10PM Pacific Time that we will have to pay the other $600 out of our own fat pocket.
Having to pay a penalty is much greater motivation to me than winning money. For example, I’m much more motivated to prevent having to pay $600 than I would be by winning $1,200. It’s partly because it’s such a double hit; you lost the challenge PLUS you had to pay $600 to the winner.
This is why I prefer to use “penalties” more than “rewards” in these types of challenges.
Wishful Thinking Gone Bad
When I did my official weigh-in, I was actually 203 pounds. However, since I had thought that I was averaging more around 201, I decided to declare my official starting weight at 201, so that I wouldn’t have an unfair advantage.
Unfortunately, this turned out to be a major blunder on my part. Apparently, I had regained more weight over the past couple months than I thought, and was probably actually averaging closer to 204 pounds.
I’ve been weighing myself daily since the challenge started, and indeed I have been averaging around 203-204 pounds. I was even 205 pounds the other day.
This is a huge deal because if my “starting” weight was actually 204 and I put it as 201, then that I means that I have to lose a total of 15 pounds instead of just 12. Today I weighed in at 203 pounds which means that I have to lose 14 pounds in 62 days, or I’m going to have to pay Paul $600.
That means I have to lose a quarter of a pound EVERY DAY for 62 days, and keep it all off! So for those of you that were thinking that this challenge is a walk in the park, I’d like to beg to differ.
I think I can do it, if I push myself hard, but it will be absolute hell.
An Update on Paul
I’m old school when it comes to many things, including losing weight. My focus is on cutting out the real bad foods and exercising a lot more.
Paul is different. He is very technical and analytical in his approach. For example, I bet he is counting how many calories are in all of his meals and is possibly even weighing his food.
He is also an extremely firm believer in the mentality behind things (personal development, life coaching, psychic development, energy healing, etc.). While I think that sort of stuff works to a certain extent and has some merit, for the most part I think it’s all bullshit 🙂
To prove how much Paul really believes in this stuff, check out his Preliminary Strategy blog post, in which he has a video explaining how he is planning on losing weight through hypnosis!
However, Paul told me last night that he just started attending martial arts classes last night again, so it does appear that he is doing some exercises as well.
I just asked him how much weight he lost so far, and he said 2 pounds. However, he didn’t eat anything yet today.
Once the challenge began, I restarted my “daily lists”. This is a physical ledger I have in which I have a number of different quotas that I fulfill everyday. For example, I do 10 “nose” pushups (where my nose actually touches the floor), 32 crunches, etc.
This is something that I am supposed to do everyday, regardless of being in a weight loss challenge or not, but I have been really bad to stick with it since last summer. I’m happy to say that since the challenge started, I’ve done everything on my “daily list” every day. In fact, I even incrementally increased a couple of the items (crunches and daily walk time length).
As mentioned above, I also cut out most of the bad foods immediately. I haven’t eaten out or ordered in once since the challenge began, and don’t plan to for the rest of the challenge. I am also cooking a bit more, relying less on premade frozen foods, drinking my coffee black, and just making other small food choices such as buying sugar-free Red Bull (which I’m not looking forward to), and low-sodium V8 drinks.
However, the biggest (in my opinion) thing I’m doing is going around Westwood Lake again. It is a 6KM trail that goes around the circumference of the lake, and I went around it many times during the last challenge.
It’s an absolutely beautiful trail, but it’s not a nice flat “walk in the park”. There are a number of inclines, and the beginning of the trail has an absolute killer steep incline hill that seems to go on forever, followed by its inverse brethren on the way down that is knotted with tree roots and rocks that kill your shins.
I went around Westwood twice so far. The first was 2 days after the challenge began, and it was absolute hell. My feet and shins were killing me and I was actually wincing in pain during some parts. It wouldn’t be nearly as bad if I wasn’t always trying to go for my best time, as going up and down those inclines does a real number on your feet and shins.
It was also really muddy that day which sucked, and I went too late as it was very dark when I finished… almost pitch black, and I couldn’t see the trail very well. While I tried my hardest to set a good time, I ended up finishing in at 1:10:12 which was a HUGE disappointment for me. My best time in 2009 was 57:55, but my first day last year I did 1:06. Being 4 minutes slower than my first and worst day last year was incredibly disappointing and disheartening.
I went again yesterday, this time remembering to wear my good running shoes (sponsored and paid for by MarketLeverage last year) and stretching beforehand. I also left earlier while it was still nice and bright out, and while there were still muddy areas on the trail, it wasn’t quite as bad as the previous attempt.
I ended up finishing at exactly 1 hour (to the second), which was awesome and rather surprising… how did I shed 10-minutes off my time in just one run? It’s possible that wearing my good shoes and stretching beforehand had that much of an effect, but I’m actually hoping it was the fact that I started doing my daily lists again which includes walking everyday (currently 10-minutes a day), as then it would mean that I can expect further improvement. If it was just stretching and wearing my good shoes, as well as going around during the day instead of night, then that would mean that further improvement will be much more difficult.
We’ll have to wait and see after my next run or two to see what happens. I have another Open House tomorrow, so I’ll be doing Westwood Lake again.
By the way, after doing all of my “daily lists” yesterday and then going to Westwood Lake, I went home for a couple of hours to have supper and then went out again to play badminton for a couple of hours. When I came home, I felt good and wasn’t even sore anywhere or out of breath!
Westwood Lake Time
|My 2009 Best Time||57:55||12 KM||Jogged much more in the middle area|
|March 13, 2010||1:10:12||6 KM||Feet and calves absolutely painful. Very dark out.|
|March 18, 2010||1:00:00||6 KM||Stretched and used “ML” shoes|
(Note: Times are for first 6KM only)
Weight Loss Status
|Date||Weight||Total Pounds Lost||Days Left|
|March 11, 2010||204||0||70|
|March 19, 2010||203||0||62|
I only have 62 days left to lose 14 pounds or I’m out $600. Wish me luck – I’m going to need it.