This week has been our annual family vacation at Indian Lake. This means that we have 4 houses full of family and lots of people, lots of fun and lots of relaxation.
While vacation is absolutely great it also presents both opportunities and challenges for my Operation Melt journey.
So Much Exercise
Let’s start with the most positive part of vacation when it comes to healthy living – tons of exercise.
Without the normal time pressures of a weekday morning, I had the chance to get long workouts in nearly every day this week. This included a new personal record run on Friday morning of 6 miles – there was some walking mixed in but mostly a run.
The average morning started out with some food, water and coffee. Then I would maybe do yoga to get some solid stretching in for 20 minutes or so. Then I have built a short warm-up circuit that includes lunges, push-ups and jumping jacks to get my heart and muscles going. After the warm-up I would go for a run or a walk, but it was most often a run. This would usually include a trip around the islands along the water and would almost always by a 5k or more of running.
After my run, I would often come back home and hope on my bike for another 2-3 miles of riding.
In total, I would usually burn about 1000 or more calories per day in tracked exercises. But there were some days that I was 40%-50% higher than that.
I also discovered this week that I really enjoy going for runs through small country towns. I don’t know the town very well so I get to explore while running and get to see fun new things along the way. It definitely keeps things interesting and keeps me from getting bored during my runs.
Lots of Food and Drinks
While all of the extra exercise is great on vacation, it is only part of the story. As you should know by now, if you have been following my journey, exercise is only half the equation for healthy living. The other half is diet. What you put in your body is as, or more, important than what you do with your body after it is fueled.
Vacation time for me means that the calorie intake goes up!
There is lots of eating at restaurants with fewer healthy choices. So this means an increased intake of burgers and such. Fortunately there are also lots of home cooked meals with the family that present more healthy options. Plus these meals tend to be pretty heavy on the fresh veggies, so that is positive.
There is also an increase in alcohol consumption for me versus my normal day. It is easy to grab a beer while playing croquet or bocce. It is fun to go site at the lakeside bar with a drink and listen to live music. We enjoy our local wine room. Plus a new brewery tasting room opened on our island chain with pretty high-calorie beers.
We also have had several late night poker games with my 11 year old niece who is really good at it.
On top of all of this I add the snacking. I am really good at skipping the snacks when I am at home on a normal day. But, at the lake, I seem to eat more snacks because they are just there. I have learned that I fall into old habits of mindlessly eating when the snacks are in front of me and I am focused on other things.
Even though I have worked so hard to lose over 125 pounds and I love the new me, the old me is still there and old habits die hard. This week was a definite reminder that this journey doesn’t have an end point. I am never going to reach a point where I can say “done!” and just stop working on it. This is a new life for me and one that requires constant diligence.
The good news with all of the extra eating is that it was mostly offset by the exercise. But the high alcohol and high sodium diet this week, paired with inconsistent water intake, has led to my weight being incredibly unstable all week.
I was super excited to start my vacation at my new low, and latest goal, weight. 199.0 pounds! I knew that I could likely expect some fluctuations from my starting weight and I was right. Through the first few days, my weight went up almost a pound each day. Then my weight fell back down for a few days back to the 199.2 point. Then, this morning, I was back up a bit.
I know that I didn’t truly gain weight because the math doesn’t support a real weight gain. It is just my body reacting to the foods and holding water in to offset the sodium and alcohol I ingested and that made it into my blood. Plus increasing exercise (and sweating my butt off) but not necessarily always meeting my water intake goal means that my body holds onto more water than normal.
I know the weight gains are temporary and not real gains, but it doesn’t really make me feel any better when I step on the scale and see my weight has gone up. I have goals and my weight needs to only go down!
Speaking of goals… I spent some time this week working on defining new goals now that I have hit my target weight. Over the next week or so I will finalize those and will share them in an upcoming blog post.
Stay tuned to hear what happens after I achieve such a big goal and need to start focusing on fitness goals that are NOT weight related!
Check back next week for more!
Last week’s stats (7/16-7/22):
Distance walked/run: 36.8 miles (+2.26 vs. LY)
Total calories burnt: 22,699 (-7,537 vs. LY)
Total calories consumed: 15,007 (+1,771 vs. LY)
Weight change: 0 pounds lost (-3.9 vs LY)