Here we are at the halfway point of the June Weight Loss Challenge. This week I am meaner, leaner and I did lose more weight than I expected.
Unlike most of the crazy self-imposed torture goals I set for myself, I did not have an audacious plan for losing large amounts of weight in the Healthy June Challenge. I had a modest 5-pound weight loss goal. Pretty reasonable I’d say. Spoiler alert: I have almost met my goal for the month with my week 2 weigh-in.
You may think that since I only have 1 pound to lose for the next two weeks that I should coast into the finish line. Take my foot off the gas. WRONG! That’s just not me. I’m doubling down, kinda. More like, staying the course with as much exercise as I can possibly fit into my day.
As I posted in the June Weight Loss Challenge: Week 1 Update, I work every other week. During week 2 of this challenge, I worked 6 out of 7 days. Of those 6 days, 5 of the days were 12-hour shifts. Yuck, right?
If you have never worked 12-hour shifts, let me tell you a secret. Okay, 2 secrets; first they suck and second, there is NO time for anything other than work, sleep, eat and repeat.
With no time to exercise this past week, I utilized my employee gym for quick 20 minute workouts on my dinner breaks. 15 minutes of light cardio on a treadmill and 5 minutes of free weights. Incidentally, I have found that 20 minutes is the sweet spot where I can take my sweat glands to the edge without drenching my work clothes and smelling like a stinky teenager for the rest of my shift. Ewww! The good news is not once this week did someone tell me I stunk.
During each of these weekly update posts, I plan to include a few posts from around the internet that reinforce my belief that health and wealth are inextricably linked to each other. Here are the 3 articles for this week:
This is a must read article written by the Good Life Better Blog. Jenny explains why managing your finances is easier than managing your health and why hiring a personal trainer was one of her best financial decisions. Read more
In this blog post written by Abandoned Cubicle, the book Blue Zones is used to build a case for living longer by trying to mimic the lifestyle of people in regions around the globe where residents live well into their 90’s. Read more.
In this post, the Moneylogue blog explores why something as simple as sleep can be holding you back from building wealth and improving your health. Read more.
Review of my two-prong attack on my health
During week 2 of the Healthy June Challenge, there was more meal prep and
fewer no meals at home. I worked 6 out of 7 days this week. I work twelve-hour evening shifts as a nurse. My meal approach for workdays include:
Late morning breakfast at home
- This week I ate a two egg, kale and cabbage scramble. Every day, lol.
early afternoon snack
- apple with almond butter
5 pm dinner
- Salad with a serving of chicken or salmon for protein. I am on day 14 of eating a salad for every work dinner. The salads have different add-ins every day though. I have found it is a good way for me to get to my 5 servings of vegetables and fruits each day. I have also noticed adding fresh fruit to the salad really cuts down on the amount of salad dressing I need. Salad dressing can wreak havoc on the calorie count of a salad, turning an otherwise healthy meal into a calorie bomb. Being a West Coast country boy Ranch dressing has always been my favorite. I have transitioned to a balsamic vinaigrette for these salads and I really like how it pairs with the fresh fruit in the salad. Did I really just say that? Moving on.
late evening snack
- watermelon or Kashi granola bar
before bedtime bowl of cereal
- I have cut out the before bedtime cereal again due to the carbs and sugar. Because of the cereal omission from my diet, I have not drunk milk in June. I’m not sure if this is a positive or neutral for my health. Whatever it is, the secondary benefit to not eating cereal and chocolate chip cookies is that I have gone sans milk in June.
Like an engineer trying to squeeze more efficiency from a project, I am trying to squeeze more exercise from a 24 hour day. As part of the Healthy June Challenge, I set a 500,000 step goal for June. I need 16,666 steps every day in June to hit that mark.
For the second week of June, I accrued 107,314 steps.
As of June 14th, I have 231,901 cumulative steps for the month.
I am here to tell you these steps do not walk themselves. Occasionally at work, for no apparent reason. I can be seen popping up out of my chair and briskly walking from one side of the building to the other. I must look like a crazy person. This is how I squeeze more steps out of my workday. I also run an 8 story set of stairs 3-4 times per shift.
With my random walks and my stair climbs the most steps I have been able to muster in a work day is 15,000. Remember I need 16,666 steps per day to hit my 500,000 goal for June. That leaves me with a roughly 1,500 step deficit each work day to make up for on my days off.
Check in with Challengers
It must be summer. We have a few Healthy June challengers who have not checked in this week. They must be out soaking up the sun and getting some exercise.
|The Challengers||Starting Weight (pounds)||How many pounds do you want to lose||June 14th weigh-in (pounds)||Wt lost: week 2||cumulative wt lost in June|
|The Smart Fi||183.4||5||179.6||3||3.8|
|Tread Lightly Retire Early||157.8||2.2|
|Physician on Fire||169.6||5||167.4||1.4||2.2|
|Sunburnt Saver||10||SS will weigh-in at the end of the month for the big reveal|
|Fetching Financial Freedom||223||6||220||1||3|
|Baby Boomer Super Saver||161||5-10||157||0||4|
|Our Financial Path||180||5|
|Count Down To Tranquility||missed the first week will be with us next week.|
|Zero To Fire||139||2|
Here’s what’s working
Here at the mid-month point, I thought we would check in with a few of the Healthy June challengers to see how they are progressing towards their goal.
I am using Jenny Craig. I have had success with this plan before. It is pricey, but the food is good and I do best when I am told what to do. I have lost some weight this go around, but visits from my family were cause for much stress eating so the loss to date is underwhelming. I hit the gym 4 times a week, mildly.
My plan thus far has been straightforward — eat less, run more. I lost 10% of my body weight in a week as a high school wrestler with this plan. I’m taking a less extreme approach now, 25 years later, hoping to lose a pound or two per week.
I’m glad to have the accountability that goes along with the weekly public weigh-in. Twice in the last 14 months, I’ve mentioned on my site that I’d like to lose some weight (10 pounds) but I made no real plan to be held accountable, and I don’t think I ever lost more than about 4 of those pounds and of course, I gained them back. I’ve got some upcoming challenges, in the next eight days, I’ve got two weddings and two rehearsal dinners on the agenda. Calories will be consumed.
I’ve discovered that I’m incredibly motivated by this challenge! It was just what I needed to help me focus on losing weight before my niece’s wedding in July.
For the June Weight Loss Challenge, I’ve decided to take a four-part approach:
- Count calories.
- Stop using stevia.
- Get more fiber.
- Move more!
Read Baby Boomer Super Saver’s full blog post, June Weight Loss Challenge: A Four-Part Approach.
Thanks for reading the Week 2 update. Be sure to stop by next week for the week 3 check-in.
Better yet sign up for my email list where my posts will come directly to your email inbox. No Spam, I promise.
If you joined the challenge and don’t see your numbers for this update you can leave them in the comment section and I will add them to the post.