Sometimes you can do everything right, and your body still goes behind your back and betrays you.

That’s what’s happening to me right now. At least on the surface.

giphyWhhhhyyyyy? (You know you heard Nancy Kerrigan’s voice in your head just then. If you don’t get the reference — “The Whack Heard Round the World” — click here, ’cause I ain’t explaining it.)

Anyway, I was very good about adhering to my eating plan all week and drank plenty of water. I even exercised. Exercised! Me!

I followed the “rules” and did everything right, but I was half a pound up at my weigh-in today. Few things are as frustrating as anti-progress. Amiright? Gah!

41.18%  21 of 51



Meet Tanita.

So I’m further from my goal than I was a week ago.

I’m trying to look on the bright side, though, because the thing about Tanita, the thing I face every week to check my progress/anti-progress, is that she’s not just a scale. She does more than spit out a single number.

Tanita is a body composition analyzer. That means she breaks down that horrid number into its components so the doc and I can see exactly what is going on — where that extra weight is.

In addition to the standard stats — gender, age, height — Tanita kindly prints out about a dozen different calculations.

A sample printout from Tanita (clearly not mine)

A sample printout from Tanita (clearly not mine)

She first breaks down my total weight into fat mass and fat free mass or FFM. Then she runs the numbers to figure out BMI, fat percent, BMR (basal metabolic rate) and something called impedance. She also figures out TBW or total body water. (Don’t ask me how. I’m thinkin’ it’s magic.) Anyway, that’s where my weight gain was this month — water.

Seeing that I was bummed by the final number Tanita came up with this week, medical assistant Brooke explained that it’s very common for one’s water weight to increase this time of year. Effin’ heat.

So, there’s a glimmer of good news. Yes, my total weight it up, but it’s water rather than fat. That’s a win in my book. Or at least a break-even.

I’m going to stick with win because you can lose water weight relatively easily.

Drinking waterThis always seems counterintuitive to me, but one of the best ways to shed water weight is to drink more water. When you’re dehydrated — which, according to the doc, most Phoenicians are during our sizzling summer months — your body will hang on to every drop of water it can to keep you going. When you’re properly (and consistently) hydrated, your body won’t horde that water.

It’s the same with food. Eat too little and your body goes into starvation mode, storing every little bit like a bear going into hibernation. Also like water, the best practice is small meals scattered consistently throughout the day. Easier said than done. I’m supposed to eat five times a day. I usually get in three, four if I’m lucky.

Water consumption is not as difficult, especially since I found this nifty little gizmo that reminds me to take a drink every 30 minutes or so. I not only drink more water in total, but I drink more throughout the day rather than guzzling it when I think about.

The gizmo is called the Ulla. It’s described as a “smart hydration reminder.”



“We found a way to give you bottle superpowers,” the makers boast.

They’re not lying!

Unlike an alarm that annoys your co-workers, Ulla is silent. It flashes an LED at you when it’s time to take a drink. It’s bright enough to get your attention, but it’s not disruptive to you or your officemates. It has ambient sensors, so it knows when you’re there, so you don’t have to worry about forgetting to turn it on or off. It also has movement and tilt sensors, so it knows when you pick up your bottle and take a drink.

The Ulla is self-contained — there’s nothing to download — and even the most technically challenged person in the world can use it. Just slip it onto your bottle and boom! You’re in business.

I’ve only had my Ulla for a little while, but I love it so far. The company says the replaceable battery lasts longer than six months.



The Ulla is $25 and worth every penny, in my opinion. You can order it at Just a heads up, ¬†ships from Europe. When I ordered mine (and then my mom’s and then my sister’s and then my friend’s), shipping was free.

With its help, I’m hoping I can drain the extra water weight in time for next week’s weigh-in. If my body cooperates, that is. And as I’ve learned this week, that’s never a sure thing.