It’s Week 15, halfway through my 30-week journey to better health. The goal has been, and still is, 30 pounds in 30 days. Here’s my midpoint update:

The Successes

My biggest success came on Wednesday when a combination of light meals and an hour of walking left me more than 500 calories under budget (even after treating myself to a chocolate banana smoothie).

screenshot of Lose It app showing 548 calories under budget
548 Calories under with three full meals.

I didn’t record any more exercise until Saturday when Julie and I spent most of the day walking. First, at the PA BBQ Fest, then at the Kutztown Folk Festival.

The Folk Festival is one of our favorite events, though we don’t make it every year. For me, it’s a chance to reconnect with my Pennsylvania German roots. For Julie, it’s an opportunity to see amazing crafts, and her favorite, quilts. And for both of us, it’s usually a chance to try some amazing food.

group photo in front of a tractor
Julie and I spent the day with our friend Kristi (front left) and her family at the Kutztown Folk Festival.

But this year was different. Having just eaten barbecue all morning, we skipped the wurst, the grilled sweet bologna, the Dutch fries and the funnel cake. Though toward the end of our day, Julie did splurge on strawberry shortcake and ice cream. It was too much for one person so I had to help her with it.

Sunday was a day of celebration for my brother Matt and his wife Lauren. We spent the afternoon at their baby shower (the little one is due September 2).

Normally, baby showers are more challenge than success, but this was unique and my brother and I spent about an hour playing quoits against some of Lauren’s relatives (we split our two games).

Later I got even more exercise, albeit less exciting, when I mowed our lawn (a little more than an hour of mowing is worth 404 calories).

The Challenges

The challenges were real this week. Thursday and Friday I had to really watch what I ate because there was no opportunity to record any exercise.

styrofoam cup of pulled pork on a bed of corn
Pulled pork on top of seasoned corn is always a good idea.

And Saturday, while I did get a lot of walking in, I also ate a lot. If you haven’t read my recap of the PA BBQ Fest yet, it’s available here.

Then at the party on Sunday, I grazed on snacks most of the afternoon – mostly enjoying Philly Pretzel Factory rivets plus a slice of chocolate cake.

The Results

Current Weight: 169.8
Weely Weight Loss: -1.4
Total Weight Loss: -19.6

After a stagnant week last week, the results are back this week. And I can mark another milestone off the list as I have broken the 170-pound barrier.

This is the lightest that I have been – and I feel the fittest that I have been – in more than 10 years. And that only lasted for one summer before I started to gain it back. This time, I have no plans to put the weight back on once it’s off.

The Week Ahead

It’s a slow week, but a hot week. With temperatures in the high-90s and unbarable humidity, it’s going to be hard to get exercise.

At least until Sunday. On Sunday, I will be joining several of my colleagues at the Pottstown Bike Race where we will compete in the corporate team event. It’s a four-person, four-mile relay race so I only have to actually race for one mile.

But I’m not going to take my bike all the way to Pottstown to ride just one mile. After the race, I’m planning to hit the trail for an hour or two.

Or until I need to stop for dinner.

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  1. Zach. Thanks for the tip about the Loseit app. I’m giving it a try and using your posts for inspiration. You make it seem hard but somehow doable. Hoping for good results too.


    1. Joyce, thank you for the kind words! Best of luck to you. I’ll tell you, the two hardest parts about the Lose It app are 1) remembering to record everything and 2) finding the foods you’re inputting. There are a lot of restaurants whose information is loaded in the app, but there are still a lot of places that don’t give out their nutritional info. For home cooked meals, it can be a pain, but you create a recipe and save it for later.

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