weight loss

Tom 3.5 & Life Plan 2014

In which I talk about fitness and the road ahead...

Tom 3.5

So once again I am unhappy with my level of physical fitness having let it slide a lot with work and other stress getting in the way. I need a new ridiculous goal but first I need to get back to my old fitness levels. I'm back on the old horse having started running everyday again and I've rejoined the gym. Expect a longer post in about 2 weeks time about how things are going.

I'm thinking my next "ridiculous challenge" should either be Tough Mudder or an ultra marathon (~40 miles not one of the 100 mile ones).

Why Tom 3.5? Well my last fitness drive was Tom 3.0. This isn't entirely a new leaf it's just me reminding myself to get back to what I was doing and hopefully take it further.

Life Plan (2014)

These are my goals for the next 10 years. I'm going to start posting the one year goals each January instead of having fixed New Year's Resolutions.

This Year:

  • Start learning Guitar (again)
  • Start learning Piano
  • Get a job
  • Finish my PhD
  • Don’t have a fat graduation photo
  • Receive my QSA at Windsor
  • Receive my DofE Gold
  • Write more short stories
  • Enroll on another marathon/Tough Mudder

In 5 Years:

  • Be earning £40k+
  • Be married or almost married
  • Have a published book
  • Have worked towards grades in Piano
  • Grade 5 music theory

In 10 Years:

  • Have children
  • Grade 8 Piano
  • Have several published novels


So I'm in full thesis writing mode at the moment but that doesn't mean I'm constantly writing. I do procrastinate (though usually with other jobs I need to get done) and this brilliant article explains why that's helpful: http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2014-06/17/jorge-cham-phd

State of the Thesis

The thesis is currently 122 pages long with 29,206 words and 154,203 characters.

Tom Out!

Tom 3.0: Week 2

A week 2 round-up...

So here's how week one has gone :)

Week 1

Weight Waist Arms Legs T.I. KCal Chest Neck Hips
Week 1 92 kg 41.75" 25" 45.25" 111.5" 1,970
Week 2 90 kg 41" 23.75" 44.5" 109.25" 658 41.5" 15.75" 39"
Difference -2 kg -0.75" -0.75" -0.75" -2.25" -1,312 N/A N/A N/A

Yet another good week :) I had trouble with my right leg last weekend so didn't manage to go running. Hopefully everything will pick up this week :)

Tom Out!

Tom 3.0: Week 1

A belated week 1 round-up...

So here's how week one has gone :)

Week 1

Weight Waist L Arm R Arm L Leg R Leg Total Inches
Start 94 kg 42" 12" 12" 24" 23.5"113.5"
Week 1 92 kg 41.75" 12.25" 12.25" 22.5" 22.75" 111.5"
Improvement -2 kg -0.25" +0.25" +0.25" -1.5" -0.75" -2"

So a good improvement over all :D I'll be talking about the diet tomorrow!

Tom Out!

Project Thor: Aftermath

In which I assess the results of Project Thor using graphs...

Weight Loss

So the weight loss wasn't as much as I expected but I did gain a fair amount of muscle. I'm pretty certain I look like I've lost some weight which is probably due to the shift of some fat to muscle :)

Weight (KG) over the course of Project Thor

Fig 1: There was no weight loss over the course of Project Thor.

Muscle Gain

I gained a few inches on all of the muscles I measured while also reducing my waist and hip measurements. Again I expected greater gains but I think there was a visible difference by the time I donned my armour :)

Muscle size (inches) over the course of project thor

Fig 2: Muscle gains (and fat losses) in inches over the course of Project Thor.


The most noticeable change during Project Thor were my strength gains at the gym:

Stay tuned for details of future projects (Project 0 - coming soon to a blog near you!) and any other small Tailor costumes. Here endeth Project Thor.

Tom Out!

P.S. Before mine, there was another Project Thor

Project Thor: Progress

A brief round up of Project Thor so far...

How's the Weight Loss Going?

Not so good. As of Tuesday my weight was 91 kg. Up 1 from the start but I have gained muscle in that time. I need to do more HIIT as I've mostly been concentrating on the gym aspect. From now there will be more HIIT and I'm changing diet plan to just reduced calorie intake as the other one was really hard to stick to this time round.

How's the Gym Going?

The gym is going pretty well. Here's a table comparing my starting rep weight and current rep weight.*

Lat Pulldown (lbs)

Shoulder Press (lbs)

Chest Press (lbs)

Leg Press (lbs)












+ 50

+ 25

+ 35

+ 75

There's visible improvement too but I'm waiting until the end for proper before and after photos :)

*Clearly not the maximal weight I can do. For example my starting maximal leg press was 210 lbs.

How's the Costume Going?

I have all the material components for Mjolnir now and will probably construct it this weekend :) I've just ordered a load of foam to make the armour with and I'm looking into finding templates for all the pieces.

My hair isn't growing fast enough for the full Thor length but I think with dye it will still look the part, also a few weeks will get me a reasonable beard too :)

Thor with luscious locks

Part of me is tempted to go as Avengers Thor before he dons his armour as it's proving difficult to find a good material for the arms.

Tom Out!

Project Thor: On Measurement

Firstly an announcment! Tea reviews will re-commence on Wednesday and run bi-weekly for the foreseeable future! Also if there's a tea you think I should try feel free to proffer it to me when I see you for my delectation and reviewing pleasure :)

So onto the post -

Measurement and tracking is very important when following an exercise program, mostly because it stops you from going insane. This is because it is very hard to see if you are losing weight* if you look in the mirror everyday whereas cold hard numbers don't lie to you**.

So below is my table of starting measurements before Project Thor so I can compare the results at the end.

Though in defiance of my earlier paragraph there is a number which lies to you - the waist measurement on your clothes. I've been defiantly wearing my 34" jeans since I managed to be too small for 38" and 36" jeans last year. Recently they have gotten tighter but still fit (sadly all the cake I've eaten this year was not a lie). Now hopefully you haven't scrolled down far enough to see the measurement table yet - do so now and see how inaccurate this flattering lie is!

Weight (kilos)

Waist (in)

Hips (in)

L Bicep (in)

R Bicep (in)

L Thigh (in)

R Thigh (in)

Total inches









Even if you ignore the half inch which would explain the slight tightness of my trousers that's still wrong by 6 inches! A 17% inaccuracy. Maybe if they gave clothing sizes accurately across the board it would help solve our obesity problem.

Finally, the total inches measurement allows you to see if there is an overall improvement even if, par exemple, your waist doesn't decrease one week. Huzzah for improvements!

*Well weight is affected by muscle mass and fat so it is possible to stay the same weight while looking more trim, but generally.

**The scientist inside me forces me to point out I mean mass which is referred to as weight; obviously going to the moon is great for any weight-loss program :P

Tom out!

P.S. This P.S. is a lie!

Project Thor: Exercise Plan

So what's the plan regarding the weight loss for Project Thor? I hear you all cry.

Well it's a two part exercise plan and a diet plan (in a future post).

So the plan is:

  1. HIIT
  2. 4-hour Workout Plan

Part the First: HIIT

HIIT stands for High-Intensity Interval Training (more here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-intensity_interval_training). I'm going to fulfill this part of my exercise plan via running. Unlike the marathon however these sessions are short (~20 mins) with a warm-up followed by 20 second bursts of sprinting interspersed with 10 second jogging sections. Feel free to laugh at my first attempt here: http://runkeeper.com/user/tomw2005/activity/107815470?&mobile=false

Part the Second: 4-Hour Body

There is a book I used last year to lose 2 stone. It is called the 4-hour body and is written by Tim Ferris. Previously I used the diet part of the book (discussed in the next post). This time I plan to use the 4-hour workout plan (so called because you have 8 half-hour sessions per month) as well. However I'm pretty sure there must be some law preventing me from posting all the ideas from the book here so I'll just leave the Amazon link and his blog link here: Book & Blog

Tom out!