Send the Bat(wing) Signal! Time for Toning!

I’m getting older, and like many Americans, I weigh more than I should.  My hubby is in this boat with me.  We didn’t get this way all at once, but if you gain even one or two pounds each year for thirty or forty years, well, the results aren’t pretty! Adding insult to injury, as we age our metabolisms slow down.  I myself seem to hit a new wall every decade or so.

Back in May, my beloved and I undertook the 24 Day Challenge to reset our dietary habits and jump-start some serious weight loss.  We did very well on two fronts.  We each lost about 12% of our total body weight during that month or so, and we established some new permanent habits that have kept us there.

We’ve seen quite a few benefits.  We feel better and sleep better. Ailments like gout, arthritis, and asthma have abated. Our skin is clearer. We have learned that dairy products, wheat products, and numerous inflammatory foods really do affect us. (Re-adding the culprits to our diets has an almost immediate impact.) We also need to buy some new clothes!

However, we have “plateaued” and are no longer losing additional weight. Since we still have some distance to go, we are working on that two ways – the first is we are developing a more conscientious exercise plan to go with the diet.  The second is rebooting the challenge itself (which coincidentally should include exercise.)

On the exercise front, although we walk and have a treadmill and exercise bike, we are now ramping up resistance and weight training. The reasons for this center around the need to do some serious toning.  At our ages, we end up with loose skin and muscles where we’ve lost pounds (can you say bat wings?), and at any age, toning tummy muscles requires some specific concentrated effort!

For me, this means lifting hand weights in various directions (to the front, side, up, down, in circular motions, etc.) in increasing numbers of repetitions – and using resistance bands to pull up, down, forward or backward.

The resistance bands are a nice variation. I have three different band thicknesses for different levels of resistance, and my beloved has made me a station to use them.  He added a 1×4″strip of wood to a corner of our basement wall, which we painted to match the wall color, and then added large screw eyes at various heights.  We move the bands to those heights using D-rings.  Any Target or Wal-Mart store has all the pieces except the wood strip. (click the photo to enlarge it.)

So, we have restarted the challenge, which includes a 10-day cleanse followed by a 14-day food burning regimen, all supported by supplements and a balanced diet of multiple small meals. I am determined to do the toning as well as regular exercise, so that my new clothes will look right on my new frame.

Look out, Gotham City, we’re gonna be stunning!

For more info on toning exercises and the 24 Day Challenge, see:

Picture credit:  Bat  © António Duarte –

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31 Responses to Send the Bat(wing) Signal! Time for Toning!

  1. sierrak83 says:

    It’s wonderful that you have your hubby on board with you…I know that’s been a huge help for me as I head head toward my own weight loss goals. Lots of luck on meeting yours!


  2. Pingback: The Call of the Free Weights – Can You Hear the Voices? | The Retiring Sort

  3. ” We have learned that dairy products, wheat products, and numerous inflammatory foods really do affect us.”
    SNAP!! I followed a similar diet and the results were amazing – I even created a blog as a place to keep all the special recipes together. I really must go back on this diet


  4. Colleen E Gunderson Photography says:

    Congratulations, and thanks for sharing what’s working for you 🙂


    • Thanks – the best part of this is the way it’s made us re-think things. We’ve tried low-carb, low-fat, and low calorie diets many times, and just getting to a common-sense diet with portion control and lots of water has been the ticket – at least for us! 😉


  5. Madhu says:

    Full of admiration and envious at the same time 🙂 I have fallen way back on the food (sweets) and exercise front. Am actually heavier than I have ever been 😦 Need to get back on a regular routine again. Keep it up both of you and post some photos of your new avatars to inspire us 🙂


  6. SimplySage says:

    Excellent! I’m inspired!


  7. peters154 says:

    As I’ve gotten older I’ve started to notice how much harder it is to lose weight, and how easy it is to put it on. I admire your determination, good luck!


  8. eof737 says:

    Congratulations on your effort. I’m proud of you and know the feeling of accomplishment. Keep it going. 😉


  9. adinparadise says:

    Well done to you both. As we get older, daily exercise becomes so much more important. “If you don’t use it, you lose it.” 🙂


  10. fgassette says:

    Good for you. I love the resistance bands. I love to walk and carry the hand weights with me. I can’t seem to do more than that for now.



  11. Congratulations on taking the initiative and changing your life patterns – that’s the big win, I think – losing those batwings will be the icing on the new cake 🙂


  12. You go, girl! And beloved, too. I know where you’re coming from and I’m having a difficult time committing to anything. Several times in the past 10 years I hade lost weight. Once 30 lbs. once 25 lbs ( which actually looked better on me) and once 10 lbs. The ten was the last one and it took forever and I got discourged. Now I’m just disgusted!!!! I’m at my fightin’ weight so don’t say anything to tick me off! I’d love to say that you’ve inspired me, but that would be committing. DANG!
    Seriously, I’m impressed and wish you tons, or should I say tones, of luck ;-).


    • Thanks for the encouragement, Gemma! I’m hoping we’ll be successful, and I appreciate the good wishes! 🙂


    • tobyo says:

      I love this reply!! it could have been written by me 😉 I am one that has the “overeating” gene if there could be called such a thing. I have rejoined Weight Watchers more times than I can count and it’s time to do it again dag nab it!! but if I could STICK to an exercise plan I am sure I’d be more successful at keeping the weight off. but good for you (the retiring sort…and I have already forgotten your name, so sorry) for all your hard work. I too am impressed!


      • Yeah, portion control is a huge issue. We now eat 5 smaller meals each day and drink a lot of water.
        For exercise, maybe start by finding a 15 minute walk you like and go there and back a few times a week. We like walking to the end of our street and back – we always see some neighbors along the way. I also used to walk around the building at work with a group for 1/2 hour, but Target (the store) is my favorite spot to walk alone – just keep moving! Walking is a stress-buster, and you can do it anywhere! 😉


  13. sharechair says:

    I’m right there with you! The pounds have been creeping on, just one or two a year, but over 20 years… yikes. We’ve been trying the exercise, but we fail on the diet. My husband loves to eat out. A lot. It’s much much better to do your own cooking. Good for you!!! Weights are good for bone health, too. 🙂


    • Thanks – My hubby travels in his work – it was quite a challenge on his last trip to France to forego the cheeses and breads in the quantities offered! He did pretty well, though – He loves taking in those belt notches! Hold a good thought that we can hit our goals!


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