Morgan Spurlock-ing it (Weigh In #1)

Posted on November 26, 2012

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Today I start my marathon training. I have officially entered phase one of my “Year of Forty” health makeover.  I’ve been slacking off on workouts and eating like a king since midsummer, and the proof is right there in the pictures.  Preparing for today, I started running slightly more than once a week,  bought my weigh-in outfit, downloaded my marathon training plan, made éclairs from scratch for Thanksgiving, and finally got my fifty pound puppy, Oliver trained to run.  Well, he does his best.

Briefly, here are my plans for Phase two, the more important aspect of this health makeover. This will begin on January 4th, the day after my fortieth birthday.  I will be adhering to a very strict Whole Foods Plant-Based Diet, (hereafter referred to as WFPB or WFPBD.)  This is vegan to the max; absolutely no animal protein, no added oils of any kind, and no processed foods.  Basically, I will be eating plants and nothing but plants.  Whole grains, beans, fruits and veggies.  I am actually looking forward to getting to this point. The more I learn in my courses for the Plant-Based Nutrition Certification I am in the middle of acquiring through eCornell, the more difficult it is for me to turn a blind eye to the detrimental effect of eating a poor diet.  I will have plenty of time to discuss this in more detail in future posts, but for now, I will talk about the business end of blogging my journey.

These photos and measurements were taken yesterday.  To keep consistency for future posts, I was wearing the pictured outfit for all data (minus the shoes which were in the photo only).   This will remain my official weigh-in outfit.  I had been aware that I was getting a little carried away with my diet and exercise regimen, (see my post here where I elaborate) but something about a photo is so much more honest than a mirror.  This is the heaviest non-pregnant weight I have ever been.  It happened so fast!  All summer I wore a bikini at the pool without a care in the world. Even now I feel like I still look pretty decent in clothes, but I probably wouldn’t climb the rungs to the high dive with the same confidence. I extensively searched for just the right photo outfit to be revealing enough to tell the truth, but not too disgusting for people to tolerate.  Flattery is not the mission of this outfit, but truth in advertising.  I was thinking about biggest loser weigh-in type gear.  A huge shout out to the girls at Athleta in Southpoint Mall in Durham for their tireless and dedicated help during such a busy day!  I chose the standard anatomical position used in medical, anatomy and physiology texts, just to be extra official.  No flattering waist twist poses allowed, and no sucking anything in.

I will be continuing to eat as I wish until the day after my Birthday, but my running will have picked up a good bit during the five and a half weeks between now and then.  Truth be told, however, the diet might start to taper as I am finding most comfort foods to be disgusting while I “wait out” the rest of my Morgan Spurlockish adventure. (You remember, the guy from ‘Super Size Me?’)

It will be interesting to see how my data changes for my next weigh in, which will be on January 4th.  I should be doing some blogging in between, as part of this “Year of Forty” deal includes a promise to keep this blog fresh at least weekly. After the second weigh in, the data and photos will be posted on a monthly basis.  If there is a significant data shift, I’ll definitely be sharing. My marathon is in March, so I am also interested in documenting the “runner’s slump” that tends to occur after a big race, when training subsides and laziness ensues. Perhaps I’ll go ahead and schedule myself another half marathon soon afterward to keep myself in check.  Enough of setting up my plan, let’s get a peek.

Here’s the Official Stats:

Height                                 5’6”

Weight                                155.5 lbs

Bust (ribcage)                    33.5”

Bust (full)                            40”

Waist (naval)                     34”

Waist (beltline)                  37.5”

Hips                                     41”

Thigh                                   24.5”

Bicep                                   11”

Calf                                      14″

BMI*                                   25.1

*I did a simple BMI calculator from a google search (I used the NIH and CDC websites) to find my Body Mass Index, using only height and weight as factors.   The ranges are given as follows:

< 18.5                  Underweight

18.5 – 24.9           Normal

25.0 – 29.9           Overweight

30.0 +                   Obese

Woopsie.  Well, at least now I can really brag at the end of the year about how far I’ve come.  I have to honestly and truly thank each and every one of you who are bothering to read this and will hopefully follow along to see how it goes.  Putting this out there in digitally unenhanced color on the interwebs was something that took some real soul searching and I appreciate you for taking an honest look, at a real person.

I think the hardest step was not posting here for the world to see, but allowing my husband to take the pictures, as if he had no idea what my body looked like before I donned my new Athleta body gear.  Still, it was tough.  But PLEASE do not come to my defense!  Look at the numbers. I just barely crossed it, but I did.  I am in the “Overweight” category.  This is not about my feelings or my self-esteem or making America feel better about their sizes. (Old Navy seriously just sold me a pair of well fitting size four jeans. Liars!)  This is first and foremost about health.  So blow up the pictures, get a good look, make all your comments and judgments and discuss amongst yourselves, I encourage it.  Then look in the mirror and ask yourself what you are having for lunch today.  It should reflect what you see.

What am I running for?  For you, for the best way I know how to reveal the benefits of exercise and nutrition and their effects on the human form. These pictures, along with this data, are the same to me as a lab report.  If you go back to my initial page I made, you’ll see that who I am is a student in Nutrition, trying to get into the Master’s program at UNC Chapel Hill, and trying to save the world one vegetable at a time. Start local.  I gotta start running 20 miles a week, just this first week.  Ooh rah!

Happy Running!

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