Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Macy's 40-Week Excellent Experiment

"But behold, if ye will awake and arouse your faculties, even to an experiment upon my words, and exercise a particle of faith, yea, even if ye can no more than desire to believe, let this desire work in you, even until ye believe in a manner that ye can give place for a portion of my words." (Alma 32:27)

Well, I have awoken and my faculties are aroused. I have a particle of faith, a desire, and I believe. The experiment? To regain my physical health, to get fit, and to lose the weight that I have allowed to slowly creep onto my body over the past ten years ... and to do it with daily guidance from the Lord, through the promptings of the Spirit which are tailored just for me. Time frame? May 16 (my 46th birthday) for my first short-range goal. August 6th (family vacation) for my medium-range goal. And forty weeks, or December 25, for my long-range goal. I figure the result of this excellent experiment will be about the best Christmas present I could give myself.

Why go public with such a personal pursuit? Because I feel I must. The Spririt has been working on me for some time, laying the groundwork for how this is going to work. For some reason, yet unknown to me, this new blog is to play an important role in the process. To hold me accountable? For my own support? To share insights and tips with others? This is the beauty of giving this struggle over to the Lord ... He is light years ahead of me, with full perspective. I am putting my trust in Him, giving everything I have to the process, and expecting miracles. I believe that somewhere down the road I will know why it is important to blog about this, but in the meantime, I will share all I can, "the good, the bad, and the ugly"!

So, the details. Here's what's on the top page of my little yellow tablet. These inspired guidelines came to me early yesterday morning after fervent prayer, and are specifically for the next four weeks. I started immediately after I was finished writing.

*No refined sugar (I had to throw out the remaining pink and red Hershey's Kisses and the brownie mixes that were such a "good deal" ... how good a deal are they REALLY when I'm the one eating most of them?)

*Weigh myself every morning (I found my old scale in the garage, under a bag of old clothes designated for Goodwill. I cleaned it up with a little Fantastik and it now holds a place of honor in our bathroom. I actually like seeing it there. It makes me feel like I'm in control.)

*Create my path spiritually before I carry it out physically. (see Moses 2 in The Pearl of Great Price) This may be the most important bullet-point on this list. More to come on this topic in the near future.

*Make smart food choices. I know what they are. Eat half of what my "normal" portion has been.

*Write a blog post chronicling my successes and setbacks every Monday. (You may notice that I'm already a day behind!)

*Drink 64oz. water daily. (My husband gave me this cool Camelbak waterbottle that will be perfect for tracking this ... I will drink three of these per day)

*Exercise five times per week. Preferably outside and with the dog. Working out at the gym is my back-up plan if the weather is just too yucky.

*Break out the old pedometer. It needs a new battery, but is terrific at keeping track of the steps I take. Strive for 10,000 steps each day. This is a stretch and it may take a while to work up to this. Thank you, Julie, for this brilliant tool.

*Have hubby take "before" pictures of me in my exercise clothes, from the front and from the back. I may get brave and share these here one day, but not yet.

*No snacks after dinner. Once the meal is over, that's it for the day. (Last night was a beast. When we got home from a movie, I felt myself on auto-pilot toward the pantry ... had to physically remove myself from downstairs to keep away from the microwave popcorn.)

*See my doctor.

The second of my two guiding scriptures in the beginnings of this experiment is:

"And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them." (Ether 12:27)

Isn't this the most hopeful scripture you have ever read? I am going to be holding onto this with everything I have.

I truly hope that something I have shared here has inspired you in some little way. I would love to hear what your tips are for healthy living. If you share a comment with me, I will email you back ... perhaps we can make this journey together! I have more unrelated things to post this week, but I will see you back here next Monday for the update on the Excellent Experiment.


  1. Dear Macy,

    I wish you the best with this. It is great to set goals. I started my own journey on this similar path last April. My first deadline was 10 pounds by Aimee's wedding. I made it. Than I just kept going. My next goal was/is to be 140. I flipflop back and forth between 140 and 142 for the last 4 weeks. When I make it, I might keep going. Right now I can proudly say I have lost 36 pounds.
    My strength came from livestrong.com. I record my goal, my daily eating, chart my weight, etc. - I only do the free version, but this is what really helped me.
    Another strength was getting out almost daily walking Natasha - she loves it too.
    My weakness is chocolate and other sweets. I still eat these but in much, much lesser qualities. I just could not give them up entirely and portion control works for me.
    Another weakness is going out to dinner and wanting to eat all the good food there.
    A strength is more fruits and vegetables, I make sure I am having some of these for every meal.
    My blessings has been amazing health so far this year, lost of weight and down 2 sizes. more endurance and delicious, new foods with me experimenting from recipes I find on blogs. And compliments - I really enjoy those.
    Best to you. It is worth the journey.

  2. I have shared some things (goals and otherwise) publicly on my blog, and I find it is very motivating. People are watching me, you know?! So two thumbs up on that. ☺

    Throwing in my two cents where they were not asked for... but I think--just based on personal experience--that the sugar part will be easier to stick to if you allow occasional exceptions. One a week or something. Not that the overall plan is intended to be 'easy' I know, but I think that 'moderation in all things' is usually a lot more achievable than going cold turkey.

    I ♥ Ether 12:27. In the last few years I have watched a couple of my biggest weaknesses (my do-it-all-myselfishness and my try-to-control-everythingishness) become strengths. I can't say that I chose to make the changes entirely on my own--some life events beyond my control forced me to start learning--but learning to "let go and let God" is so amazing, and it has become a strength for me. It's an enormous paradigm shift. And it's so beautiful.

  3. Good luck! This reminds me of a friend of mine who has a blog with her family chronicling just such a thing. Check it out at: http://gettingridofthepudge.blogspot.com/.

    One of the tips that they have on this is a FREE website called My Fitness Pal: http://myfitnesspal.com/ It helps you keep track of calories you eat during the day as well as tracks how many calories you burn from exercising. I've checked it out and it actually seems pretty cool.

    Last thing: I've met SEVERAL people recently who have been trying to lose weight. One person I met said he lost 106 lbs. in the past couple of years. When I ask him how, he said that all he did was start walking 2-5 miles a day. And then he didn't change his diet other than shrink down his portions. For him, he said tha it can be hard to stay away from cream, sugar, butter, cheese, etc. He said he felt that those things in small portions are okay and MUCH better than removing them entirely and then binging later.

    I know that as you approach this journey with a lot of thought and prayer, you will be blessed with knoweldge and guidance.

  4. "Slay the sugar monster in 4 doable steps"
    http://www.thehealthyhomeeconomist.com/2011/01/slay-the-sugar-monster-in-four-doable-steps/ I saw this today and thought I'd pass it along. :)

  5. Mom. I'm going to do this too. Ever since I was told to stay off refined sugars, it's been harder than ever to resist them. But I will not fear my own weakness anymore! I'm going to start this weekend by tossing all our refined things out. In the garbage, goodbye, gone. I found some great granola bar recipes that I want to try, along with other homemade snack ideas that look interesting. I figure, if we shop and prepare homemade but grabbable food over the weekend, the temptations will be much lower during the week. A couple weeks ago, I chopped all our Bountiful Baskets veggies and put them in their own containers. We ate all of our produce that week!
    I also love the water idea. I have the same kind of water bottle, so I'm going to push for the 3-a-day too. Also the exercise. Five days a week. Totally doable!
    You have me so pumped up now! I'm really excited to head into the weekend when I'll have time to prepare, and then see how I do in the coming week. Woot woot!