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Me Minus... 12?

Last week was so much fun! I launched my Me Minus 10 campaign to lose these pesky 10 pounds before I turn 50. I got so much great feedback from readers, many of whom told me they're in the same boat and plan to join me in my pursuit, plus a lot of helpful tips. Thank you all for your support and ideas!

Several concerned readers (and some thoughtful colleagues) wondered whether I really do need to drop those 10 pounds, or whether perhaps I was really suffering from some body-acceptance problems. I appreciate those concerns, and I thought about those issues carefully before embarking on Me Minus 10. But the bottom line is that there are things I want to be able to do -- including sitting in a particular yoga pose called "cow facing pose," which I currently can't do well because my thighs get in the way -- that losing weight would help me achieve. I'll keep an eye on my motives, though, and make corrections along the way if I find I'm veering off course.

So, as I said, last week was great. This week, so far, not so much.

It all started when fitness guru Pam Peeke suggested I measure my waist and also determine my body-fat content. She's more concerned about how much of my weight is made of fat -- and how much of that is piling up around my middle -- than she is about the sheer number of pounds I'm carrying.

I wasn't eager to invest in a new scale. But the other day when I stepped on my old-fashioned arm-balance scale just to confirm that I was starting this quest at 145 pounds, I got a scare. I had to keep moving the weight marker higher and higher, and still the thing wouldn't balance. I got all the way to 161 pounds before the scale settled in place!

Thankfully, when I mentioned this to my husband, who had just been weighed by a medical professional, he stepped on and found that the scale measured his weight at 16 pounds higher than what the nurse had measured. So that made sense: 161-16= 145.

But clearly it was time to get a new scale. We went to Target and bought one for about $45. I waited until this morning to step on -- and found that I weigh not 145 but 147 pounds!

So I'm starting in an even bigger hole than I had thought.

But here's the good thing. That bit of bad news didn't send me scrambling for Oreos. I didn't beat myself up. Instead, I made a nice cup of tea and got out my new food diary and wrote not only about that experience but about a few other things going on in my life that are causing the kind of stress that usually makes me want to stick my head in a bag of M&Ms.

And then I decided to get back to work. All in all, my little setback ended up serving to reinforce some of the new habits I'm working to develop. I can't say I'm happy about the extra pounds, but I am glad to know I can handle that disappointment and move on.

As for reporting to Pam Peeke, I'm going to give myself until my next weekly weigh-in -- on Tuesday morning -- and see where things stand then. Though I'm feeling fairly strong right now, I'm also a little bit raw. In my surprise at my unexpected weight, I forgot to write down my body-fat count. And I don't feel much like getting back on the scale again just yet.

How about you folks? Did anyone else dive into their own Me Minus Ten campaign yet? Let me know how you're doing.

Next time I'll fill you all in on the advice I got from Brian Wansink, who's helping me figure out how I can lose this weight simply by making a limited number of small changes in my diet and lifestyle. In the meantime, you might want to read this article in today's New York Times about whether making small changes can really add up to big weight loss.

Have a great day!

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By Jennifer LaRue Huget  |  March 2, 2010; 12:56 PM ET
Categories:  Me Minus 10 , Nutrition and Fitness , Obesity  
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I was having a great week with a workout every day but Sunday and reasonable eating, but then over the weekend I got a craving for chocolate baked goods. I made Ghiradelli brownies from a mix we got at Costco, and having them around has not been helpful. They're just SO good. Some weekend buffets, especially at a banquet on Saturday, also cramped my style... looking forward to more tips as you journey through this.

Posted by: karawat | March 2, 2010 2:09 PM | Report abuse

My scale gets kicked around on the bathroom floor sometimes. Being absolutely nuts about numbers I keep a 5 pound weight in a drawer. If I've moved the scale around while cleaning or someone (like my spouse) stacks stuff up on it I put the weight on the scale and adjust the zero mark to where it says 5 pounds.

That way I can't blame my scale for my problems.

Posted by: RedBird27 | March 2, 2010 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Are you sure this wasn't either an issue of scale calibration or normal fluctuations in weight? As I strove to lose 12 lbs of baby weight last year I began weighing myself on the same scale everyday upon first rising. I was surprised to see my weight fluctuate by as much as six pounds in a single month. Every month it would go up and then come back down. Eventually the monthly high got lower and lower which is how I knew I was progressing. The fluctuations are smaller now but still about 3-4 lbs. Even more surprising was that my lowest monthly weight occurred just prior to and during the beginning of my menstrual cycle when I felt most bloated. So if you were to ask me what I weigh, I would say "between 136-140 lbs, depending on the cycle day." My new goal is to keep my highest monthly weigh-in under a certain number.

Posted by: txportia | March 2, 2010 2:47 PM | Report abuse

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