Saturday, August 2, 2008

The body is a funny thing

Sometimes I don't quite understand my body.....

OK, to be honest, I have understood my body less than I have understood most anything else. Just when I feel like I understand something about how my body works it throws me a curve-ball.

This past week I haven't eaten perfect, but I by no means have eaten bad either. I had ice cream one time, and had a few too many chips at a Mexican restaurant another time, but other than that really didn't eat bad.

Now that I have set the stage, or more or less tried to defend myself, let me tell you what has been going on and why I am complaining. This week my body has been on an upword spiral. My average weight has gone up by 1 lb, but the scale has gone from 162 last Saturday, to 164 during the week, and ended up resting at an even 165 this morning. I hit 165 one other time about a month ago, but that didn't concern me because it was more of a spike, rather than a week long increase. Last time it happened, the very next day it dropped, I am not so sure by the way it has happened this time that it will start dropping immediately.

Because of my recent collar bone break (you can read more about it on my running blog over at I have not been running or, I am embarrassed to say, doing any cardio at all. This really didn't make much of a difference at first in my weight, as my weight continued to drop during the injury, but seems to be starting to take it's toll, or so it seems.

The thing that I never seem to understand is why something will work one time, but not the next. You see, I kept losing weight following the injury, and now it seems that even though nothing has changed my body decided to put it all back on in just one week. I know I am just upset because of the quick turn, and really shouldn't be concerned on what happens in just one week, but it can really mess with your mind when your body doesn't always act the same way.

So, what about you?

Have you ever had those unexplainable times when your body just doesn't do what you want it to do? Have you thought that you had everything under control only for your body to throw you a curve ball? Why not tell us about it? There are many that read this blog on a regular basis, or those that will come across it while trying to figure out why things just are not going as they should. These readers could be comforted by the fact that they are not alone in the frustration or inconsistency that they feel.

Tim Wilson -


  1. Hi, You are definitely not alone with the lack of knowledge about your body. I started running over 4 yrs ago. This year I have run over 400 miles already but I am not losing weight. Started about 140...I will go as low as 137 then back up for no apparent reason. Lately I have increased my weekly mileage but still no loss. I will just keep trying...knowing that I may not be getting lighter but fitter. SMILE

    Kimberly (berly6412)

  2. Good Morning,

    Join the club! It has taken me my whole life to this point to learn what I am about to say, and I will probably learn something new today as well!

    Having said that, I am beginning to believe the Bible, "Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body." (1 Cor 6:19-20 NIV)

    Yesterday I attempted to donate blood. My iron level was low! It hit me hard, because I haven't had that problem since 2003!

    I usually get all depressed at this kind of thing, but I reflected back, and I had not done anything unusual that would have done this.

    Then I re-read some medical wisdom, and they reminded me that iron fluctuates. That made me feel somewhat better.

    However, exactly 20 minutes later, I had a call to go to the front of our building, and there was a friend of mine who said, "I just got served divorce papers."

    Losing a companion is like losing a part of yourself. Suddenly the insight came to me - "Maybe God wanted me to understand my buddy's plight in a new way, and I could share his journey."

    I shared that, just to prove I understood in a very small way of what was going on.

    My next response was - "Loss of any kind proves that we don't really own anything - except trust. You are trustworthy, hang tight, you'll be OK."

  3. Hmm...not to be a downer but this is my take on it.

    No exercise means you've probably been losing muscle mass. This would explain the initial loss. You are probably gaining fat (probably very slowly so don't panic) and the gain is slowly outweighing the muscle loss.

    Of course I could be (hopefully) totally wrong!

  4. Thanks all for stopping by and commenting.

    Andrew, I really think you hit it on the head. I have thought this exact thing, but just didn't want to admit say it and therefore admit it.

    I needed you to say it so I could come to grips with it a bit more. I have really lost my complete focus through this injury and it has been getting harder and harder to keep focused.

    I will be getting back to it soon and very soon, and when I do so the changes in food intake will also get much better as well. The food intake has not been bad, but just not as good as it should be or had been previously.

    Thanks for saying what I needed to hear.


  5. Right there with you. Have had 6-8 pounds that will not leave for the last 2 years. Can you do any lower body weight training or have you been doing any weight training? If you're building muscle then maybe the scale won't come down as fast. Good luck and maybe it's your bodys way of telling you its time to change the routine!

  6. Rachel - thanks for the comment, I need to change my routine for sure - change it to actually start it again. I have gotten out of most all my training because of the injury and it has been hard to keep even just lower body up. This is due to changes in schedule and just not feeling good because of the injury and the continued pain.

    This will all be changing really soon though.

    Thanks again for stopping by!

  7. Hi Tim,

    Yes, I can certainly relate to your experiences! It took me a year to lose 25 lbs. And that's with running for about 10 months, & eating fairly healthy for (most of) that time.

    Also, there are times when what I do or eat has no correlation to what I see on the scale: I can eat potato chips & lose weight & then eat nothing but healthy foods & gain weight. It doesn't always seem to make sense. That probably because it can also takes a bit of time for it to all show up on the scale. ;-)

    I know it helped me to focus on my BF% instead of the numbers on the scale. If you have a fat scale, you might want to just focus on the BF% & ignore the other stats! ;-)

    Regarding your recuperation period, I do understand what you're going through! It's certainly frustrating when you want to run but really can't, due to injury or illness. As you will probably recall, (since you were so kind to write me get-well wishes during my illness!), the same thing happened to me last February, when I was ill for a few weeks & couldn't run: I had a lapse in my fitness & healthy eating habits. Initially, I'd lost an unhealthy amount of weight, due to being bedridden & an initial lack of appetite, but oh boy, did I get my appetite back over the next 3 months! ;-) Needless to say, I gained more pounds back than I'd like to admit, & was also faced with the challenge of having to start from scratch again when it came to my physical fitness program. Not only was I out of shape in general (i.e., everything was a lot flabbier & the legs & heart had lost a lot of their conditioning!), but the respiratory illness meant that I had a much-reduced lung capacity. I had to start the CT5K/C25K program from scratch, & then redo the BOHR program, but the end result is what matters. Also encouraging is the fact that now I'm running even better than when I first did those programs!

    So, I think it's still possible to get back on the wagon after any kind of setback. If you can keep your mind focused on moving forward, even if it's just in small ways & by doing small things (which is really the only way we do actually move forward anyhow), I think you can beat this tough period & get back on track.

    When I wasn't feeling great about myself during my hiatus from running, due to my reduced state of fitness & the weight I'd gained, it was all-too-easy to sabotage myself & add to the misery of the situation. But then, after a while I said to myself, "Look, I'm not going to focus on this anymore. It's not helping me to focus on what I can't do, or what I'm not able to do. But if I think about what I CAN do, & just focus on the step immediately in front of me, then I think I'll be able to not just get back to where I WAS, but exceed it!"

    Speaking of overcoming setbacks, I don't know if you've seen Dane's recent post about Holly Koester, an ex-army captain who served in Desert Storm. (She was en route to her post when the civilian vehicle she was riding tipped over; her spinal cord was injured in the accident & she lost the use of her legs as a result.) She was told that she'd never be an athlete again, but did that end up stopping her? No! She has done wheelchair marathons in all 52 states! She's really an inspiration! Seeing her accomplish all of this really puts our own limitations in perspective.

    Anyhow, I hope this little pep talk helps to rally your spirits. There are a lot of us who are inspired by what you've already done & accomplished, so you KNOW you can do it again. I hope that you are able to use your recuperation time productively, & still find ways to move forward in your development, even if that means redefining your activities & your sense of your self as an athlete during this time. As always, I wish you nothing but success & a speedy recovery!


  8. cyberpenguin - Thank you so much for stopping by and for the pep talk! Much appreciated!

  9. Hi Tim,
    You're welcome, my friend! Just look at all us here who are in your corner, cheering you on! 8-)


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