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Dan Nied’s Fortress of Weight Loss: Day 47

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Starting weight: 299 pounds
Previous weigh-in (Feb. 3): 281.2 pounds
Last weigh-in (Sunday): 277.4
Pounds lost last week: 3.8
Total pounds lost: 21.6
Pounds until 240: 37.4

We will begin today with the numbers in all their glory. Why? Because last week was a big one, people.

Check out the table above and behold the near 4-pound weight loss in one week’s time. Take note that my current weight is nearly a full three pounds under 280, and believe me when I tell you that I am only 2.4 pounds away from 275, the lowest weight of the 100 Days diet.

In short, I am pretty much back to my fighting weight.

It feels like a big victory, mainly because it is. A huge one, actually. After weeks of trudging through the dark forests of the 280s, I am finally in the clearing of the 270s.

Side note: Here is a little oddity about me, but maybe it is totally normal. I have instinctively associated every weight grouping with a color. I didn’t choose these colors, but it is just how I see them in my mind. For example, when I think of the 279-270 range, I see it in white. If you are interested, here is the basic rundown:

400+: Black
399-300: Yellow
299-290: Red
289-280: Dark green (hence the forest analogy)

279-270: White (hence the idea of the clearing)
269-260: Brown
259-240: To be determined. I will let you know when I get there.
239-200: Dark blue
199 and down: White again (Also irrelevant, since if I ever see the underside of 200, it will be because I’ve acquired a deadly disease).

I have no idea why these colors are what they are. But that’s how I see it.

So anyway, back to the victory at hand. I should note that I do official weigh-ins only on Sundays, but I have also taken to doing one unofficial mid-week weigh-in on Wednesday or Thursday to gage my progress for the week and adjust my goals accordingly. Well, last Wednesday night, after drinking two cups of tea a few hours earlier, I weighed in at just over 283. I was mildly discouraged, but again, I understand variables. I knew that I was on the right track, so I didn’t sweat it too much. A trip to the gym on Friday, and four straight days of eating well during work (an amazing accomplishment in itself), made me optimistic heading into Sunday. I actually weighed myself on Saturday night, just to see the range. I know from experience that I will lose anywhere from 1 to 2 pounds over the course of seven hours of sleep, so I just wanted to know what was in store for Sunday.

Anyway, that Saturday night weigh-in was 278.8, a fantastic number in itself, considering the goal of the week was to get down to 279. I expected to be 278 on the nose Sunday morning, but ended up at 277.4.

So I got a little cocky. Well, not exactly true. Sunday I found myself with a friend in San Francisco’s North Beach district, home to some of the finest Italian restaurants on the West Coast (At least that’s what they tell me. I can’t say for sure since I have only been to West Coast Italian restaurants in North Beach, or in Oakland. There is a world famous Italian place in Vallejo, though. Perhaps you have heard of it. It’s called the Olive Garden).

So I enjoyed some Fettuccine Alfredo (and I will be honest, I have no clue if that’s the way you spell “Fettuccine”), and generally took the day off on Sunday. Monday, I decided to have a lazy day, something I haven’t done in a while. So I shudder to tell you that not only did I not go to the gym, but I also had two chicken burritos for dinner. That’s right, two off days in a row.

It’s not that I am trying to get back over the 280 mark. Quite the opposite, actually. It’s that I felt that I had to readjust myself after what might be the most successful week the Fortress has seen. The rationalization might seem a little convoluted, I know it does to me as I write this. But while Sunday was an off day that I could enjoy with someone else, I was all caught up in conversation and such and I didn’t really get to apply that off day to the diet. I suppose that this would make a little more sense if I mentioned that during the off days, all I think about is the diet. For example, every bite of the Super Bowl Sandwich was taken with the thought of how bad it was for me. So ultimately, I forced some guilt on myself, even as I enjoyed my reward.

Monday was for me more than anything else. Two chicken burritos with the thought of the diet in mind. The odd thing is, after that meal, and every other off-day meal, I couldn’t get over how not worth it that meal actually was. These meals tend to leave me bloated and in pain. They take me back to the days where I spent every day like that. I enjoy the taste of the food, but when all is said and done, I always realize how unnecessary the entire thing is. Sunday wasn’t like that. That meal was totally worth it, partly because it was in a social setting, and the meal wasn’t the focus of everything. What that bowl of pasta did was kind of compliment the overall mood. I guess that’s how normal people eat, eh?

It sounds obvious to you, doesn’t it? You are thinking that I should only eat poorly in social settings and discard the loner off-day meal altogether. But to me, I need that loner off-day meal more than anything. I need it because it’s more than a meal. It’s a reflective pit stop. It marks the end of one period and the beginning of another. I unwrapped that first chicken burrito with last week in mind. I polished off the last of that second one with this week in mind. As I swallowed the last bite, I was thinking about my goal of getting to the gym on Tuesday and Wednesday before work, and then going again on Friday and possibly on Saturday. I was thinking about getting down to 275 as soon as possible, so I can really start having fun on this diet. I thought about how within my grasp 270, the official 100-pound mark since Day 1 of the 100 days, is again. And I realized that once I hit that 270 mark, I will be halfway done with the Fortress.

I think it would be impossible for me to sit here and convince you that my methods are normal. I think it would be a total con for both reader and writer to try to tell you this is the best way to approach weight loss. I am fucking crazy (and lazy). I know that.

But I will try to convince you that, more than anything, the best way to lose weight is to find a system that works for you. If I could have just started eating healthy from Day 1, and continued throughout with no pauses for reflection, no pit stops of greased up meats, I know I would probably weigh around 260 right now. I know that every misstep prolongs this journey, and is a missed opportunity to continue straight ahead on this beneficial path.

But I’ve never been one to walk in straight lines. Sometimes I like to wander sideways for a little bit, just to see what’s over there. That’s what works for me. That’s why I know Tuesday and Wednesday and Thursday and beyond will be excellent days. I can say that I have found my method, and it is working for me.

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About Dan Nied

  • You should be so proud of yourself! You’re such an inspiration. Thank you.

  • It is awesome to see how far you have come and how long you have stuck to it. Kudos to you. Also, thanks for talking about how your off-days are important to you. That was really good. I’ll keep reading about your weight loss.

  • Guy

    With whom did you enjoy this Fettucini Alfredo during this social situation in the North Beach district? I’ll assume it was a lady friend. Does she work with you? Is there anything else of note about her?

    Aside from the cryptic questions I have some congrats to offer- you’re closing in on a big preliminary goal- Godspeed to 275 sir.