January 9, 2012

back on track + goal setting

Wow.  As much as I love sweets and all the delicious food that surrounds the holidays, I feel SO MUCH BETTER after a week of eating fairly healthy.  It is ridiculous.  The last couple of weeks I was getting pretty bad headaches, which I'm going to assume were caused by not enough water and way too much sugar, well and maybe lack of sleep.

This past week I was MUCH better about eating healthier meals, and besides the occasional dark chocolate chips I stole from the cabinet (a bad habit that I really need to break), and my one sweet treat I plan a day I really didn't have any excess junk.  I'm still not getting enough sleep, but that is because my insomnia is creeping back up.  I lay awake for an hour or two in the middle of the night, or I'm wide awake all on my own at 5am.  Not sure why that is happening, but oh well, that is not what I really wanted to talk about.  The important point to make, is I can't believe that I used to feel gross almost all the time.  I was always eating unhealthy meals and too much junk, and I just felt miserable.  Why did I do that to myself?  I'm so happy that I've changed my habits.

And the other good news?  I'm back down to .4 pounds under my goal weight.  Huzzah!

On that note, a friend has sent me a couple texts asking about my weighloss/healthy living journey, and I thought one question in particular was a good one to share.  How did I decide what my goal weight was?  I think it is all too easy to set unrealistic goals that one might fail to achieve.  And if too many failures occur, you're bound to give up.

In my ideal world?  I would totally weigh 10-15 pounds less than I do now.  And the reality is I could probably get there.  But I would have to change my eating habits even more drastically than I already have, and put in a little more effort at the gym.  It is doable, but the truth is I'm not ready or willing to do that right now.  So there is no use in having that goal number hanging around when I don't plan on doing anything to get there, and just beating myself up for trying harder.

My first deciding factor was that I wanted to get in the normal or healthy BMI range.  Obviously the BMI calculators can't take into account your muscle mass or things like that, but for my body and build I knew it was suitable scale to go off.  The second thing that helped me pick that goal number, was selecting a weight that I knew I felt good about myself at.  I currently weigh about 2-3 pounds less than I did in the photos I shared of myself (that I was using as inspiration) when I started my journey.  I knew that weight was possible for me to maintain while not being overly restrictive with my diet.

Another good goal to set is body fat percentage.  This is obviously a bit more difficult because you have to be able to calculate your body fat, but it is an excellent way to check your progress and set realistic goals without looking at the scale.  The average body fat percentage for women is 25-31%, while the fit range is 21-24%.  So another part to my goal is not to go above 22%.  When I was working with my trainer I got down to 17.7% and I was mostly very happy with the way my body looked.  I can guarentee you I am getting closer to the 22% number again, simply because I've stopped doing so much weight training.  Nonetheless I think monitoring your body fat percentage is an excellent way to help set realistic goals.

I hope all that rambling was slightly helpful for someone :o).  How did you arrive at your weightloss/fitness goals?


Amanda said...

I really just picked a number that I think I want to weigh. Lately I have kind of threw that to the side and just focused on being healthy. I would be lying, though, if I said I did not want to lose weight. I am definitely checking out my healthy BMI and adjusting my "goal." Thanks for the great post!

Kim said...

I got down to healthy BMI before I got pregnant. Now I'm just trying not to gain more than 35lbs. If I can manage that, I should be the same size as when I started losing weight after baby. I did learn that I personally am not happy at the upper end of my healthy BMI. Ideally, I will weight 145lbs when I'm done my post-partum weight loss which will put me squarely in the middle of the healthy BMI range for my height. It's a totally doable weight for me.

Chappell of Love said...

Well, I looked up the healthy weight range for my height and have picked the highest number. That is as of now. I am sure that when I reach that I may be more motivated to maybe go down ten more pounds...

Kelly Janowski said...

My goal weight is 124. It's 20 more than what I started at and about 3 away from where I am now. I know if I got serious about my diet, I could get there. I chose that weight because it's a number I've never seen and it would put me solidly in the healthy range for my height.

Sharstin said...

way to go!

Vanessa said...

I also use my bmi to choose my weight loss goal..as long as I get to that range and am feeling stong & fit then it is all good!

Good for you on your loss!!