My fitness goals for 2019 were straightforward. I wanted to lose weight and get healthier. My desire was to reach my goal weight of 215 pounds by the end of the year. In addition, I wanted to log at least 150 workout sessions and measure my VO2max as a target line for improvement. Within those larger goals I’ve also set smaller goals for myself, such as doing my running program and training for a 5k.
Now that the year is halfway gone, it’s time to check in and see where I’m at with each of my goals.
Let’s start with the weight loss.
Weight Loss Check-in
As I stated above, my weight loss goal for the year is to reach my target weight of 215 pounds. At the time of writing the post, I had 48 more pounds to lose.
In the 3.5 months since, I have not made any progress on my weight loss. I have yo-yoed between 265 and 259 pounds, mostly hovering at 262 pounds. There are lots of things I can attribute to this, but many of them are nothing more than excuses I tell myself so that I feel better about not losing anymore weight. Excuses like my wife is pregnant & that’s thrown things off, or I’m adjusting to working out more and eating more to keep up. But none of those are legitimate reasons. While on occasion that can be the case, my wife’s pregnancy is no excuse for my poor eating habits of late. And if I ate the right things, I could eat more and still have a net positive on the weight loss.
Course correction for this is both simple and difficult. First, I need to get back to logging my meals in MyFitnessPal & counting my calories. Second, I need to get back to my (mostly) plant-based/vegan diet. The combination of those two will go a long way to improving my weight loss. Also, I need to make sure that I don’t eat back all the extra calories I’m burning while working out.
My weight loss goal is a bit of a downer, but it’s not all bad news when it comes to my 2019 fitness goals. As of today, I’ve actually accomplished a number of things I set out to do.
We’ll start with my VO2max, which is the number that measures my overall health improvement.
When I started, according to Garmin’s measurements my estimated VO2max was a 33, which was poor. One of the first things I did when my Polar Vantage V arrived was take their fitness test, so I could have my VO2max baseline in their program. On April 22 my VO2max came in at 26, which is still obviously very low. Since that time I’ve measured my VO2max bi-weekly on Monday mornings.
My most recent measurement was taken on July 1 and my VO2max came in at 39, which Polar says is moderate. This means in the span of 2.5 months my VO2max has improved considerably and my cardiovascular system is more fit than it used to be.
My goal is to reach the Good level by the end of the year, which requires scoring between 44-48. With my running & cycling, I think that is certainly doable, especially as I increase the number of hours I’m working out each week.
In addition to improving my VO2max, the other fitness goal was pretty simple: log 150 workouts for the year. This was a fairly conservative number on my part, knowing that I have a tendency to fall off the wagon when it comes to working out. But, I figured working out 3 to 4 times a week was more than doable given my goals.
Well, as of today, I have officially hit 150 logged activities for the year. Granted, some of these sessions are only minutes long, but they are workouts (like my 30 day pushup challenge). So, even if I’m not losing weight, I’m still working out, which is a win in my book!
But, what do you do when you reach your goal and you still have six months left in the year? Stretch goal! So, now I’ve set the ambitious goal of reaching 300 activities and doubling what I’ve already accomplished. It seems doable, but it doesn’t give me many days off, requiring 25 workouts a month for the remainder of the year.
In addition, I’ve given myself some smaller goals that I’ve also achieved, such as running a 5k. I didn’t hit my time of 35 minutes, so I’m still working toward that. And I’m currently doing a century cycling challenge for the month of July (sponsored by Trek), with a goal of riding my bike for at least 100 miles this month. As of today I’m a third of the way there.
So, my workout goals are going strong and keeping me motivated. I feel great having crushed that goal & now trying to double it up. If the first half of the year is any indication, I know I’ll crush that too!
At the midway point, that’s where I stand. I have some wins and some losses. And that’s okay. That’s how life is sometimes, and you can’t win them all. The fact that I’ve stuck with my workouts, especially now that I’m cycling as a commuter several days a week, is quite encouraging even if I’m not losing weight because I’m still getting healthier. Now, if I can correct my poor eating habits, I’ll start to see things move in the right direction with the scale.
If I’m realistic, I know I may not hit my weight loss goal for the year, but that doesn’t mean I can’t get as close as possible. So, that’s what I’m focusing on and I will use lead measures to make sure I get there, choosing the right things that will get me to my goal.