Tag Archives: strengthen uplift challenge

Just Some Weekend Musings

Earlier this week, I was obsessing a bit over my body fat percentage reading.

You all left awesome comments, so thank you for that. 

Meghan wins for best comment, though. She told me that there was an athlete mode on the body fat machine AND she told me about the Racing Weight book, which I immediately downloaded. 

I was curious, too, what the athlete mode means. According to Tanita, a scale manufacturer:

Q: Why is there an “Athlete Mode”? 
A: The Athlete mode was developed to provide a more accurate reading for athletic body types. Athletic body types are physiologically different than standard adult body types, due to muscle mass and hydration level differences. Athletes tend to have greater muscle mass and tend to be more dehydrated. These differences would skew the body fat reading high, when taken with the standard Adult mode.

  • Tanita defines “athlete” as a person involved in intense physical activity of approximately 10 hours per week and who has a resting heart rate of approximately 60 beats per minute or less.
  • Tanita’s athlete definition includes “lifetime of fitness” individuals who have been fit for years but currently exercise less than 10 hours per week. Tanita’s athlete definition does not include “enthusiastic beginners” who are making a real commitment to exercising at least 10 hours per week but whose bodies have not yet changed to require the Athlete mode.

I don’t fit the 10 hours per week right now (and probably only fit that when marathon training, and barely), but I can get behind the rest of it.

I’m just a few chapters into the Racing Weight book so far, but I’m really enjoying it, because it focuses on how to fuel your body for running or endurance sports and be as lean as possible. He developed a Diet Quality Score system, which scores each food to give you a score at the end of the day. Foods are classified as either high quality or low quality. You earn points for the high quality foods and subtract for low-quality foods. I despise counting calories with the fire of a thousand suns, so this seems like an interesting way to better monitor what I’m eating, and also to compete against myself a bit, much like I do with my FitBit.

I also spoke with Michelle, our coach for this challenge. She reminded me not to obsess over this reading, that it was just one measure of health. She checked on their body fat thingy, and they do have an athlete mode, so we’re going to try that as well as calipers and take the average. Whether that figure was accurate or not, I guess it gives me a good starting point for this challenge.

Last night, Michelle and I were texting. I told her I was going out to dinner and drinks for Laura’s going away party and my goal was to not have more than 4 drinks over the course of the night; 2 at dinner, 2 at the party after. She suggested if I did go over my goal, that I should plan on an extra 10 minutes of exercise for each drink. Over 6 hours, I ended up having 7 drinks. Since that was roughly a drink an hour, I never felt more than a little tipsy, but I managed to drink an extra 700 calories (at least.) It’s kind of gross when you think of it like that. So, I’m going to run 7 miles today.

Also, this post needs a picture so here is one from Laura’s party last night. Leaving NYC is dumb.



























Also, this is happening. (It’s technically not ING any more, but whatever.)















On New Year’s, Gia mentioned she was going to do the Miami Half in the beginning of February and asked if I wanted to go. 

When the Polar Vortex hit NYC this week, I decided that yes, yes, I did want to go to Florida in February, thankyouverymuch, and booked a ticket.

Have any of you done it? Do you have any fun trips lined up? Let me live vicariously through you. 

My Run-In With the Body Fat Machine

Yesterday, I walked into Uplift for my fat-measuring as part of their Strengthen Up(Lift) Challenge. 

I weigh myself fairly regularly, and my scale measures body fat.

It typically tells me I’m around 20% body fat. Prior to last night, I didn’t really know where that stood, but when I first started losing weight I was at 42%…so, that was all I really needed to know.

I know scales aren’t the best way to measure body fat percentage, but a few years ago, when I embarked on what I called Theodora 2.5, my trainer, Joel, measured my body fat percentage and it was around a 19.5. I’ve gained 5-8 pounds since then, but I’ve also been doing more strength training, so I thought that Official Measurements would have me fairly close to there.

I walked in to Uplift, all happy to see all of my favorite people, and I walked up to sweet tiny Helena, who NBD, was on the Today Show yesterday. 

She asked me how tall I was, how much I weighed and how old I was. I wish I could say I didn’t let numbers define me, but I sheepishly told her I weighed 145ish pounds, and I was 30. (I’m totally cool with my height, for the record.)

Omron Fat Loss Monitor

She had me squeeze one of these bad boys.

The top number read out 29 and the bottom read out 24.

I thought maybe she gave me an extra year or something, and the 29 reflected my “age” and the 24 reflected my body fat.

“What do those numbers mean?”

 She told me the 29 was my body fat percentage, and the 24 was my BMI.


I walked over to Chelsea to have measurements done. They are all relatively similar to the last round of measurements I had done a few years ago, which was a relief.

I’m not thin by any means. I consider body relatively “average” with a little extra pudge around the middle from my love of wine and carbs. 













They handed out this chart, and I was actually surprised to see that 29, for my age, fell squarely in the middle of “average” range. However, my BMI (I know, I know, BMI isn’t the most accurate measure, but still…) is on the higher end of healthy.

Five years ago, I would have been thrilled to have been in these healthy ranges at all. I don’t know if I’ve even ever talked about this on the blog, but I tried Wii Fit for a little bit before getting my act together. All I remember is that mean little Mii telling me I was obese. And with a BMI of 31.4, yeah, I was. Overweight is 25-29.9, so I was on the lower range, I told myself. I was just overweight, I wasn’t obese.

I try not to rationalize like that with myself any more and short change myself with excuses. 

Again, I’m not lean by any means, and I’m doing this challenge to challenge myself, but this number came as a huge surprise and was disappointing, since I thought it would be much closer to what my scale said.

I was texting with Jen, who talked me down from my ledge. I had a bowl of ice cream on Sunday night, you know, so that my body fat percentage would be up, and I could lose a ton. In all seriousness, I doubt that made much of a difference, but maybe being sick and not working out Tuesday – Saturday had some sort of effect…or maybe the machine was off a bit.

I can run marathons. I can push through a tough year. I work out often. I know this number doesn’t define me, but it was still hard not to be disappointed. 

Especially because I work out often. I think that’s why it stung the most. It was a harsh reminder that so much of your health and weight/fat loss is diet. And that my diet isn’t stellar. I don’t think I eat particularly poorly, but I could certainly stand to have more vegetables and less wine.

So…I have my work cut out for me in these two months. 

You guys know I’m obsessed with everyone at Uplift, but I’m really glad my team’s coach for this challenge is Michelle. She lost 40+ pounds a few years ago, maintaining it until having her cute little muffin late last year. She gets it. 

Michelle mason katy widrick

























And just because I’m the creepiest, doesn’t she look just like Katy?? They’re both new moms, and so nice and so real…so they’re basically twins.

I can’t wait to hear what kind of wisdom and fun Michelle has for us.

Let the games begin. 

What’s easier for you: diet or exercise? It flip flops for me, but given that I work for a fitness company and love running races, it’s definitely fitness currently.