Thursday, 21 April 2011

Diabetes Information, As Requested

I received an email from a fellow diabetic the other day, in response to this blog recently appearing in the Club Physical newsletter. She asked if I'd mention whether I am a Type 1 or Type 2 diabetic. Type 1 diabetics are insulin dependent, whereas Type 2 diabetics produce their own insulin - but take prescription medicines to decrease insulin resistance in their blood cells. For the record, I'm a Type 2 diabetic.

Why is this important? Exercise and diet can affect different diabetics in different ways, and what's healthy practice for a Type 2 diabetic may be different for a Type 1 diabetic. In general terms however, exercise within reason and healthy eating will benefit both groups. As with any exercise or diet program, please consult your doctor before undertaking any challenges such as the 12 Week Transformation Challenge, to ensure that you're not taking any unnecessary health risks.

Keep healthy and happy - and look out for my next blog update a little after Easter. Which reminds me, have a very happy Easter everyone! And if you're diabetic as I am, take it easy on those hot cross buns and easter eggs!

Monday, 18 April 2011

Week 8 of the 12 Week Transformation Challenge Complete

Week 8 of the 12 Week Transformation Challenge is now over, and whilst it sometimes feels like a long road, it is certainly a worthwhile one. I’ve now lost a full 13Kgs (or, as I personally like to visualise it, 26 packets of New Zealand full cream butter), which feels great. I’m really starting to notice the body changes now, and others are too. Whilst looks are a consideration, how you FEEL is much more important. I’m happy to say that as each week goes by I FEEL better, which is one of my primary aims of the Transformation Challenge.

Looking at the statistics and measurements, which I like to do from time to time, it’s no wonder. There have been HUGE changes in my body composition over the last 56 days (and 96 gym sessions). When I began the Transformation Challenge, my blood sugar levels were high, at 11.5, and I was feeling unwell from time to time as a result. Today my blood sugar has dived to 5.8. Whilst that’s still not under 5 (which would be fantastic), my Doctor is happy. Doctor’s consider a range of 5 to 8 appropriate for diagnosed diabetics, and I’m getting to the lower end of that range. Which reminds me: have you donated to Diabetes New Zealand yet? See the on-page links throughout this blog, to donate.

Blood sugar is just one indication of returning health. I now actually ENJOY the exercise I do (never thought I would say that), seeing each session as a personal challenge, with my goal being to complete each session safely and to exhaustion, to maximise weight loss. I’m very blessed to have a fantastic trainer, Sugar, at Club Physical Xpress in Auckland, who’s such a joy to work hard for. And the reducing body measurements speak for themselves. Just look at the progress so far:

At start of the Transformation Challenge, in February 2011: Waist 141cm, Small Waist 131cm, Hips (Butt) 142cm, Chest 127cm, Arm Mid 44cm, Thigh Mid 66cm, and weight 143Kg.

At the end of week 8, in April 2011: Waist 131cm (10cm lost), Small Waist 123cm (8cm lost), Hips (Butt) 130cm (12 cm lost), Chest 120cm (7cm lost), Arm Mid 39cm (5cm lost), Thigh Mid 62.5cm (3.5cm lost) , and weight 130Kg (13Kg lost).

I haven’t taken new photos this week, but I’ll try to support these measurements with a visual image in the next blog post. Not only have the body measurements greatly reduced, but I’m also noticing large reductions in the FAT percentage on my body overall. I’ll keep these statistics until the end of the challenge when they will be the most pronounced, but I expect them to be significant. I haven’t had my blood pressure checked during the challenge period – but again I’m expecting a healthy drop in readings there.

At the moment I remain on target to reach my 20Kg weight loss goal. That’s been my plan since day one (a stone a month weight loss goal), and I do think it’s achievable – if I keep going, day after day, and view each workout as a small step on the journey back to health. I’m not perfect, and I’ve had the odd small treats along the way: a Mongolian BBQ meal a few nights back with friends, a drinks and dancing night a few weeks back – but on the whole, I’ve been very well behaved and disciplined on this challenge. And for me personally, that’s been a key part of the whole experience.

Change is hard, and I keep reminding myself that the 12 Week Transformation Challenge is only the first step in my overall mission to get my weight down significantly. It’s about throwing out my old unhealthy lifestyle, and replacing it with a whole new way of living that’s healthy, that’s supportive, and that works with my body rather than against it. So far so good. I’m gradually forming healthy habits that I hope will enable me to not only lose this excess weight, but keep it off for the LONG term. Every time I feel like having a biscuit or chocolate or other unhealthy snack, I look at this 12 Week Transformation Challenge blog, and it reminds me of all of my hard work in the gym to date, and of where I started. I never want to return to the old me – so junk food will have to wait!

Thanks as usual for your support, comments, and donations. All are appreciated. Thanks also to Club Physical for making it all so easy, and for providing gym facilities where I truly feel I belong, and staff that live the brand promise. That kind of supportive environment is such an important element of weight loss that it makes me want to recommend the Club Physical chain to all Auckland residents seeking diet and lifestyle change. And on that basis, here’s a link to their website, so you can make your own enquiries. Club Physical New Zealand Website.

Have an awesome week, and I’ll update you all again next week on my progress with the 12 Week Transformation Challenge here in Auckland, New Zealand. And by the way, have a very Happy Easter!

Monday, 11 April 2011

Week 7 Is Over, Week 8 Begins

Sorry about the delay in posting this blog entry. As I mentioned in my Week 5 entry, I said I'd explain why my blog entry would be later than normal, in this entry. Well, I was away on holiday in Singapore and Batam (Indonesia)! I thought it best to mention this on my return, rather than as I was leaving (just in case I didn't make it back). Anyway, I'm back in New Zealand now, and back on the program.

I arrived home last Thursday night, after about a week or so away. During this time I made sure to pick hotels with gym equipment available, so that my normal gym routine would not be too adversely affected. This turned out to be a very bright idea indeed, as I was able to go to the gym on all days of my holiday. Let me tell you, exercising in a gym room in 30 degree heat is not fun - but it does burn calories! It was nice to have a change of scene, and a chance to relax. I even managed to fit in some reflexology and massage sessions, which were nice and relaxing, and good rewards for all of my hard work to date.

I had a bit of a scare on Friday when I returned to the Auckland gym - I'd put on 3 kilos, in a week away! I was horrified. I couldn't understand how that could happen, when I'd done so much walking, kept my eating healthy, and kept up my gym regime as best I could. I was told it was probably water retention. Apparently, being in a hot climate can make your body keep extra water in reserve. I was sceptical at first, thinking 3 kilos was a huge amount of weight just for some water excess... but the prognosis turned out to be correct. On Monday, when I weighed myself at the end of Week 7 milestone, I'd lost about 3.5 kilos over that weekend! I'd never have thought that possible. Just goes to show I know so little about body physiology!

Dave In The Gym

Anyway, current stats show me at a weight of 133.6kgs, or 9.4kgs down from my start weight. The keen eyed amongst you will notice that this is however only 300grams down since the end of Week 5 - which I'm not pleased about. Losing an average of 150grams a week simply doesn't cut it! That said, it's possible I'm still shedding water, as when I weighed in this morning, Tuesday, I'd lost another good chunk overnight. I'm keeping that figure to myself however, as I want to wait until next Tuesday's result time to ensure that the weighing figure is accurate and more stable - and without post holiday influence.

So, life continues on, and the 12 week transformation challenge in the gym is still a vital part of my life. As said earlier, I'm determined to throw everything I can at this. Over the next 5 weeks of the challenge, I'm planning to "up my game" - working harder and longer in each gym session to really burn the calories and up my muscle tone. So I'm hoping that despite the short term lull, we'll all see real and meaningful results in the coming weeks. Ensure you keep visiting the blog to see progress - you'll hear it here first! If you have any questions or comments, feel free to drop me a line on email or leave a comment on the blog.