shape, and getting into it

“i’ve decided to get into shape, and the shape i’ve chosen is a triangle”

well, not really, but i am trying to make a change. eating better, cutting out sugar and salt, and trying to get back into exercise. back when i was a scrawny 185lb undergraduate, i was working out 3-4x a week, walking everywhere, and not really thinking about what i ate – which was admittedly a lot of crap and takeout. i was probably also eating a lot less, mainly due to the reality of being a poor student. then in ’99 i moved to minnesota for grad school and really learned what it was like to be a poor student. i probably lost another 10lbs or so during that first year.

and then life changed for the better. several years of a long-distance relationship, jenn moved out to minnesota to start grad school too and moved in with me. it was awesome, and with two poor students sharing expenses (plus her obviously superior cooking ability) i was eating regular meals. and slowly i got lazy, started opting for the car rather than the bike, and started to pick up pounds. at first it was good – i was decidedly underweight for my height – but the weight went up. rather than the long-steady 185lbs, i seemed to settle in at about 250lbs. that wouldn’t be bad if it was a healthier distribution, but it wasn’t. there was a while that we went on a bit of a fad diet and started working out, which dropped me down to a healthier 225lbs. i was happy there, but the diet sucked and wasn’t the sort of thing you could maintain. so back up to 250lbs i went. that’s where i stood for many years. i’ve always wanted to get into better shape, but i like my admittedly lazy lifestyle and was content with it – provided things didn’t get worse.

now we’re in 2010 and it seems i’ve slowly crept up and i’m sitting at 260lbs. on top of that the doc has agreed that i should lose some weight and, at least for now, cut out sugar and salt. so i’m eating more healthily, the bike has come out of the basement and is back on the road, and i’ve signed up to use the gym at work. i started out with just doing laps around the block on my bike. it’s about 450m around, so 10 laps worked out to about 4.5km. it’s also pretty flat, so a good way to ease into things. after a few 10-lap rides last week, tonight i moved up to a more interesting route. i can do a larger circuit around our neighbourhood that’s still about 4.5km, but far from flat. it’s got some good rise and fall, and in particular about a 1km uphill stretch that kicked my ass tonight. feeling brave, after that deadly uphill km i kept going another km before i made a u-turn and headed home. so tonight was 6km total on a more challenging route. we’ll see how tomorrow goes – i might do two laps and push it up to 8km total, or maybe i’ll do 6 again and save the double lap for thursday.

anyway, feeling pretty good about it so far. hopefully soon you’ll be seeing a new slimmer me. wish me luck!