Sodium is in Everything – Week 12

Previous Posts:

Check out the Intro post to get an idea of what this blog is about.

Week 11:  I rework my format and focus in more on my nutrition.

Week 10: I take a top level view of my nutrition.

Week 9: I include a little bit of world perspective as a backdrop for what is going on in my life.


Domestic: The U.S. reacts to terrorists attacks in Brussels. Congressional leaders call for stepped-up airport security. And while all the presidential candidates condemned the attacks, individual responses range from tightening borders and visa systems to heightened monitoring of Muslim neighborhoods. Many Americans wait in long lines to vote in so-called “Western Tuesday” contests in Utah, Idaho, and Arizona. Republican party leaders map a strategy to deny Donald Trump the GOP nomination. Joe Biden repudiates the Republican-dubbed “Biden rule” to blockade Supreme Court nominees in an election year. And reaction at home to President Obama’s historic visit to Cuba.

International: Belgium detains at least six people after the terror attacks in Brussels. Officials confirm 31 people, including two Americans, were killed in the attacks. The Belgian government acknowledges high level counter-terrorism failings. Secretary of State Kerry says the Islamic State is lashing out in Europe because its base in the Middle East is eroding. Syrian troops battle Islamic State militants in an effort to retake the ancient city of Palmyra. A UN tribunal convicts a former Bosnian Serb leader of genocide. And president Obama makes a historic trip to Cuba.

Courtesy of The Diane Rehm Show

Description of the Week:

Mar 18: Had work today broken up by having lunch at home and taking the pup to the dog park. After work we grabbed some dinner out. We came home to relax and spent the rest of the night in. A little bit of reading before bed.

Mar 19: Decided to check out a few estate sales this morning as something to do. Also went to an antique mall, out for lunch, the dog park, and a few other places. Dinner at home with a terribly delicious dessert. I probably won’t be having any of those anytime soon. Finished the evening up with a walk and some reading.

Mar 20: Did some yard work around the house in the morning after breakfast. Had some lunch and took a little break by going to the dog park. Came back and finished things up around the house. Got some groceries for the week. Had dinner and worked out after. Ended the night with some Netflix and reading.

Mar 21: Had a normal day at work. Came home to have some dinner. A few errands in the evening including picking up some new books and getting some additionally weights since I am continuing to make progress there. Did a workout session, had our evening walk, and finished up with some reading.

Mar 22: Went to the dentist before work and got the all clear! A couple of meetings at work to round out the day. After dinner, we got a bench for our front porch, which the neighbor’s cat promptly decided was her home. Oh well at least someone will be using it for sure. Played some games in the evening, took our walk, and read before bed.

Mar 23: Had a regular work day. After dinner, went out looking for lower sodium cooking ingredients. Worked out in the evening, went for a nice walk, and read some.

Mar 24: Measured my weight in the morning. Another normal day at work followed by walking around the mall some after dinner. A pretty relaxing evening with a walk and some reading. Took my tape measurements in the evening.

Heart Rate, Sleep, and Energy Levels:

Week 12 HR_Sleep_Energy

Book of the Week:

This week I started The $100 Startup: Reinvent the Way You Make a Living, Do What You Love, and Create a New Future by Chris Guillebeau, which was recommended to me by Brooke of Simultaneously Editing. Feel free to recommend any books you think might be worth a read.

This book seems to be fairly actionable. It is broken up into 3 parts: stories of successful entrepreneurs, beginning steps to get started, and then ways to grow past that. Some things are new and some things I’ve heard before, but overall it has been a pretty enjoyable read so far. It’s always exciting to see what kind of various things people are having success with.

Workouts and Activity:

Week 12 Workout

Mar 20: Weight lifting; One arm row, Bicep curls, Russian twists; Active for 32:58; Average heart rate of 94; Heart rate range of 76-113

Mar 21: Weight lifting; Barbell squats, Calf raises; Active for 14:54; Average heart rate of 100; Heart rate range of 71-119

Mar 23: Weight lifting; Incline chest press, Triceps extension, Sit-ups; Active for 22:35; Average heart rate of 93; Heart rate range of 75-110

Week 12 Activity

Body Composition and Measurements:

Week 12 Body Composition

Neck: 14 3/8 inches –

Shoulders: 44 1/4 inches 

Bust: 37 1/8 inches 

Chest: 34 7/8 inches 

Waist: 31 1/4 inches 

Hips: 36 5/8 inches

Thighs: 21 3/8 inches 

Calves: 14 1/2 inches

Upper Arm: 11 1/4 inches 

Forearms: 10 3/8 inches


Week 12 Nutrition


My resting heart rate is pretty steady for the week with no outliers. I don’t expect it to be decreasing any currently as I am not focusing on that, but I am glad not to see any spikes.

I seem to have more activity this week based on my heart rate though mostly in the lower range.

My total sleep is largely increased from the previous week and actually above my goal of 8 hours each night.  My average sleep quality is great this week with both REM and deep sleep in my preferred ranges. I need to work on being more consistent about when I go to sleep though. I would also like to push my waking time earlier, so consistency will be key there. I will start to measure my morning energy levels based on how I feel at 8 am rather than when I wake up.

I met my step goals for the week and my number of workouts for the week. I either increased weight or repetitions for every exercise this week, which is mostly reflected in my calculated 1 rep max. That might be the best simple indicator to look at.

My weight and lean mass are down from the previous week, but my fat mass is up. Will continue tracking to see if that is a continuing trend. Some variation is to be expected.

My body measurements on the other hand, seem to be on the increase. All except my upper arm though. I might have to start doing a trending measurement here as well to try and limit some of the variation I see.

My calories in versus calories out is definitely increased from the previous week though I am not seeing the weight increase that I want yet. I will continue at this current level for another week and see if there is any sort of lag effect. What a week for sodium though. I didn’t hit my goal even once this week.

Sodium is in Everything:

I might touch on some tips on how to reduce your intake in a separate post, but I thought I would touch on at least a few things here. Pretty much anything that has been processed in some way has sodium. Even foods that would be considered healthy in most other senses, such as milk, whey protein powder, and whole grain bread. When you are restricting calories it is a little easier, but when you are trying to actually increase your calorie intake, every little bit quickly adds up.

Modifications for Next Week:

Starting next week you will probably see my morning energy levels a little lower as I will be recording them relative to 8 am in an attempt to start waking up earlier.

I will start evaluating my body measurements on a rolling monthly average. Hopefully this should reduce some of the variation without requiring me to do more frequent measurements.

I will continue with my same level of intake in terms of calories and now that I have a better handle on what to watch out for in regards to sodium I should better be able to hit my goal for next week.

Feedback from You:

Have you ever tried to restrict your sodium? How easy or difficult did you find it? Any good tips for staying under your limit?

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