About Fogdog's Weight Loss

Don't Focus on the Goal...

If you've followed this blog you know that I've struggled for many years with improving my health. I've finally reached a point where I've managed to maintain a small amount of success. Now it's time to take the next step, but I believe it requires a new way of thinking.

Instead of trying to get healthy, why not shift focus toward learning how to build healthy habits instead. Follow me as I try to teach myself how to Engineer healthy habits that will allow me to take my health to the next level. Let's see where this experiment goes!

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Day #21 - Measuring Progress

After completing my first 20 days it dawned on me that I really don’t have any way to measure my progress.  When you look at what I’m trying to do, my changes are so much more than just what the scale tells me.  I’ve had my ups and downs already; I’ve had some great days and some not so great days.  But how can I tell if I’m making progress?  How can I tell if I’m improving as time goes by or just stagnating at the same level? 

This is the year that I have chosen to make my health top priority.  I set out with 3 specific goals; Lose 100 pounds, Quit Smoking, and Quit Drinking.  But these are long term goals, how do I measure my progress towards them?  More importantly, there are so many daily factors that can impact my yearly goals, how do I capture that stuff.  In order to meet my goals I also have to keep my mental focus.

Sure I have my scale and weekly weigh-ins, but I could go on a starvation diet for 30 days.  During those 30 days if all I focus on is my weight then I would say that I'm doing great. 
I need something that will tell me how I'm doing each day because that's what I'm focused on; one day at a time.  I need some method of "grading" myself each day (objectively).  If I can record that grade everyday then I should be able to see some sort of a trend.
So that's what I'm going to do.  I'm going to develop a system of grading myself each night and then recording it.  In order to be successful I figure the system needs to meet these criteria:
  1. It has to be objective - subjective grading won't work because it can be influenced by how you feel each day.  No, the grading has to be designed such that if I graded myself and my daughter did, we would come out with the same score.
  2. It has to be quick, easy, and require nothing more than a pen and paper - If it's not quick and easy I won't do it
  3. It has to have room for growth - Based on how I'm doing right now, I should be scoring probably around 50%.  That way as I grow, my score will have room to grow as well to show me the progress
I think what makes this process tricky is that item #3.  In order for me to design something with room to grow, I need to know what my future me should be doing each day.  I have to take some time and think this through. Expect me to write more about this later in the week.
Today was my unrestricted day so I won't go into much detail about how I ate.  Another big milestone though, today marks 3 weeks of no smoking; 3 weeks is the milestone when they say your cravings have reduced considerably.  I've still got a long way to go, but I take stock in what I've achieved so far.  Goodbye Day #21 and my first 3 weeks; let's head into week #4 and Day #22 with a bang!
Stay Strong!


  1. I just want to stop in, say hello, and congrats on staying smoke-free for this long. You can do it!!! As a former smoker who quit a hundred times before really quitting, mostly for two day stretches, I remember how hard it was. You have done the hardest part, so stick with it! I have a son who was in the Army, he smoked from age 16 until last year when he and his wife had a baby. He tried to quit when he was in Afghanistan, but I told him he should probably just smoke while he was there:)...he and his wife both quit, and he is a big fitness junkie now, he has always had this addictive personality but now channels it in a good direction. Anyway, I am a huge fan of your blog, and am rooting for you!!!!


  2. Three weeks no smoking is amazing! Congrats.