Monday, May 11, 2020

Make It Real

So the problem I have is I THINK about doing better, but don't ever DO better. The doctor's assistant told me the other day that my blood sugar was 367 the day of my appointment.  That's high! And truth be told,  I in the back of my knew its been bad. I just ignore it so I don't know. So death talk got me thinking,  and I've been taking my blood sugar numbers for 3 days trying to figure out what each thing I eat does to my blood sugar.  And that in turn makes me see what crappy eating does to my body and what good eating does. And that makes it real to me.  I had pasta and lots of it last night and as a  result,  my blood sugar was up until 2 o'clock this afternoon, despite me eating next to nothing all day.

I went to the track at lunchtime and hit a three laps, and it was challenging.  I'm glad I did it, but my legs took a while to recover. Gotta figure out what to do for tomorrow since the forecast says rain.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

I Don't Want To Die

My doctor had her assistant call me. She said my diet is killing me. Somber words to hear. My a1C was crazy, triglycerides are dangerous high, and cholesterol needs work. I hate whiners, and I worry that what I'm about to say is whining. Coronavirus has kicked my ass. Trying to be everything I am needed to be, get everything done and still be me, and take care of me has been weighing on me a lot. So stress eating was my thing for awhile. Top that off with I was in a situation with insurance, leaving me without the best blood sugar meds I've ever had, and yeah, my numbers sucked.

I've worked a little harder for the last 3 days, and I'm seeing some progress. The steglujan immediately brought my glucose levels below 220, from 360. I've now had a few in the 100s. It was 160 an hour ago. So I'm continuing checking my sugar. I'm trying to find foods that don't jack it up. Good thing is eggs and sausage don't! Those are kind of staples for me.

Now comes the part that is hardest. I have to figure out a way to get both diet and exercise going at the same time, with my gym closed... Sux, but doable. I just gotta figure it out.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

I have been off kilter lately and it is flowing into my health life. And I wasn't able to define it untl recently. I am frustrated as all get out. I have a family that depends on me and a high pressure job. However, I don't make a great deal of money at this job. I'm in no way saying that I am poor. But I make just enough money to keep us from having to struggle. Which would be fine in a job that doesn't wear on you and require 20 decisions a day about someone else's life. Where I find myself is in a place that I get high pressure with family and job, but no chance to blow off steam and get it all off my mind on a regular basis. Most in my field get to take weekends in Branson, or weeks in New York or have a lake house or boat or both. I don't even have a space in my house or yard that I can go to for an hour and not have someone come need something.

Add to that the fact that my long term goal is changing at work based on factors I can't really control with any sort action that would leave me questioning myself and my integrity. In short, I am a frustrated man with little to no recourse that I can see at the moment.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

It's Not Over Until You Say It Is Over

I have been sucking yet again. But the thing is, I never resign myself. I just think about getting back on track, then do it sporadically. Now I am back at off the track again, but I am taking this opportunity to write about it, and get back on track. . It doesn't have to be a Monday start, it can be an 7 in the morning Sunday start!

I have eaten a healthy breakfast of 3 eggs. I am not going to go out for lunch after church. And I will keep my calorie count below 2000 today. I am adding a layer to it. I am going to stop eating sweets. I don't eat them a lot, but if they are present,will eat them. Not for the next week. Have a great day!

Tuesday, August 1, 2017


I don't know if this is a problem across the board with folks on fitness journeys, or if maybe this is pretty specific to me. What's the first thing you do when you get amped up about getting in shape? You make a plan, either a very detailed plan, or perhaps a broad strokes plan. But nonetheless, a plan is made and that plan, that is your salvation. This is your path to the promised land!! But here is the thing about plans. They are great for framework, but if you are the person that can't be a little flexible about when you do what or how you do what, then there may be issues in your journey.

Take me for example. I had a pretty big step off plan yesterday. I have been consistently leaving the office, going to Walmart, and buying a turkey wrap they make there. It is $3 and 360 calories. I am fully aware of everything about its nutrition and it fits my plan for each day. Yesterday, I wound up having work lunch at a locally owned restaurant. The kind that doesn't have a website that I can go check on the specs of a dish. That alone set me off a little. But I made the best choice I could on the menu. I forgot to get on MFP and find something similar to my dish when I got back to work. Then later, as I realized I had forgot, I also began to dread doing it, fearing I would find that I am not at the calorie point I want to be at for 4 o'clock in the afternoon. In all of this mess, I began to stress a little. I don't know why really, other than instinct I haven't beaten out of me yet, but I had a Snickers candy bar. I thought for sure that was going to screw me for the day on my calorie goal. Basically, I was about to throw this day away, as I have done many times before. But here is how the day wound up playing out. I had a talk with myself and basically said throwing the day away is not an option. I will chart my food on MFP, I will take what it is and learn moving forward to protect myself a little better. So i began to chart, even the candy bar, and turned out, I made a really good choice at lunch and the candy bar was actually not 1 million calories. In fact, by the time I was done charting, I had room enough for supper and a snack without going over. So I get home, and it was like Kathy knew I needed something to fix my day, she had made a big pan of roasted veggies! Meatless Monday to the rescue, and I wound up with a very low cal, but very fulfilling supper that saved my day!

Yesterday was a day I had to be flexible to succeed. The office lunch was a tough thing, but I made it work. The super low cal/high nutrition supper was not really something I cherish, because I like meat. Historically, I would have ate it and then raided the fridge for some meat. Being flexible and changing my attitude towards Meatless Monday was just the thing I needed to pull myself out of the bad attitude I had been having all afternoon!

Continue this theme on to this morning. I have a general overview of what my workouts are going to look like each day. For this week, my plan was to do weights on Monday, do the elliptical today, weights again tomorrow, then a long session of cardio on Friday. I woke this morning and found out that the weather was just right for a nice long walk around my neighborhood. We cut the cable, so my keeping up with the weather has suffered. When I realized this, I made a quick change and decided to go with my long cardio day today. I enjoy outside workouts so much more than inside, but the heat had been oppressive for the last few weeks around here, so I was going strictly indoor workouts. I know this sounds like a dumb example of flexibility, but I am that guy that getting off my plan for the day can seriously derail me, even if getting off plan includes getting a workout in. If it isn't the workout I planned, I am in trouble. Another issue I face is being flexible about what time I workout. One one of my attempts that didn't quite take off, I was determined that I will workout at 5 a.m. 4 days a week. And I did do a good job. But then I had a couple of jury trials back to back, and I started to use that time for prep. I could very easily have gone to the gym at lunch on those days, but that wasn't the time I had set for me to workout, so I couldn't go at that time! A little flexibility on my part may have made that particular attempt successful, and not left me kicking it down the road once again.

Monday, July 31, 2017

The Walk Back

If you are reading this, it is likely we share a few things in common, one of them being a health journey that has been stopped and started several times. And we probably have both had bouts of extreme success followed by no follow up. So what is it that keeps us from starting back on track when we see results slipping away? What is it that gets us back in that pit from whence we just escaped? I know there are lots of things, but today, I am burning about something very specific. The false narratives and realities that we let ourselves believe.

When I knocked off the 100+ pounds in 2010 and 2011, I was on top of the world! I was in the best physical shape of my life, I was a runner, I was very active. I remember once I had some friends I was helping move furniture, and the girl was marveling at the fact that I wasn't even breathing hard, at which point, I noticed and marveled myself. I had literally achieved my dream and in my mind, I was never going back. I should have been aware of the dangers that lie ahead, as I had also worked my way into phenomenal shape in 2000 and 2001, and let that go. But I was cocky, and I didn't put a good plan in place. Not to mention, my life exploded in 2011, so I really really needed something to keep ahold of my progress, but I didn't have a thing.

So here is how the whole thing unraveled. Step 1 was that I had worked really hard and dedicated a crap ton of energy to losing the weight and getting in better shape in 2010-2011. The reality is, it was pervasive in my life. I tracked every calorie and I worked out excessively. I had a formal workout first thing out of bed, then on the way to work, I would do laps around Walmart. If I was at any event that the opportunity was available, I would do laps around the area to get a little more in. I blogged EVERY SINGLE DAY without fail. I poured all my heart and soul with every ounce of energy I could muster, every day. So when I first hit below the 200 pound mark on the scale, it was a huge victory. I pressed pretty hard for a few more weeks, but in my head, I was tired and I started to play like the game was won, and I was not required to protect the endzone anymore. I made a conscious decision to "start eating intuitively" which was the worst decision I could have made. I did however keep working out for a bit. But here comes the part where I really needed a plan. in July of 2011, I was accepted into law school. I was excited, to be sure, but the big problem I didn't have a way to combat was the school was 55 miles one way trip. I had a family and a mortgage and wasn't going to be able to work for 3 years, so getting a place near school wasn't an option. I was going to have to drive and 2 hours a day, on top of class and homework. In my mind, I simply ran out of hours in the day (false, I just didn't want to put the work in). So at that point, I had quit tracking my food, thinking I was smart enough to eat sensibly without supervising myself ( false, that has never worked for me) , and now, the exercise I was keeping up was going away too. This is all setting up for the obvious conclusion. I didn't protect my endzone, and I was going to lose it.

I think every failed section of a health journey has a moment in which you could have turned things around before you lost all the ground you just gained. I remember the one from 2011 very vividly. I had started law school and was about a month or so in. I recall I had a shirt that I put on and it was snug, so I decided to weigh real quick and see what the deal was. My absolute lowest scale reading was 196 lbs I think. On that day, I weighed 214 lbs. A thousand times or more, I have thought about the fact that had I said "holy crap, it's time to do something right now!" and decided to get a plan together, I wouldn't have gained back 80 lbs. Hell, if I could have just held the line at 214 for the duration of law school, I'd be in a better position now. But I didn't do anything. I believed everything would be fine, I just put a little on because I can't exercise as much now ( was doing zero). Oh to have that day to do over again.....

I am a huge believer in one thing. Every "failure" is only a failure if you don't learn something from it. I am old enough and aware enough now that once I am successful getting to a healthier weight (I am presuming success, another thing I have learned) I will protect that with all I have to give. If I have to track food and blog and say daily prayers from now to the end of my days on earth, so be it. I will never have to walk back down the road again.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Ch-ch-ch-ch- changing!

I'm only 2 weeks in, but I have to admit, I have done some changing. And ultimately, that is what I set out to do. The physical transformation that happens will be nice. But the reality it, it would only be temporary if all I was aiming for was to get to a number on a scale, or a shirt size or any other solely physical goal. Only when I am able to change myself, as in my habits, my thoughts, my attitudes or my emotional responses will any physical transformtion be a permanent one.

So far, I would say the biggest change I have made is the ability to not feel the need to finish all my food, or my family's food. In my world, food is king! And it is not to be ignored or wasted. If it is on my plate, I ain't leaving until I'm done. If it is on my family's plate, I'm not letting it be thrown away. It is perfectly good food. There are starving kids in Africa! However, in the last two weeks, I have not finished my kids food, and I have actually left food on the plate in a couple of restaurants. I also only finished part of the lunch I had yesterday, and put it back. I am truly turning a corner here, and I love it!

I also have stopped thinking about food constantly. The reality is, I started to think about the next meal immediately after the meal I just finished. And that is just sad. Food was my life, and it was just as important as my family is. And that is a high level of importance! But here lately, it seems that God has seen fit to change me and now this health journey has taken food's place. I track my intake, with the goal of beating the calorie goal (as in staying under) being my day's goal, rather than the next meal. I have given the gym much more importance these last 2 weeks.

My favorite thing about this journey so far though? I have energy to do stuff. I got up yesterday morning, after my 3 mile walk, I was sitting around on one of my devices, but it wasn't really fulfilling as it had been historically. I just wanted to get outside and work on some stuff that, quite frankly, I had been ignoring for a good while. I spent the whole morning working on cleaning off my deck and back yard, I trimmed a tree that needed desperately, and I moved my "garden" to a better spot. I went school clothes shopping and grocery shopping with the fam. We didn't get back until about 5, and then Kathy started on supper. Usually, supper signifies the end of the day for me. I then sit mindlessly scrolling Facebook and other sites until bedtime. But last night, I started on getting the front yard cleaned up and organized. Then, after that, Kathy and I left the house and went looking for good clearance deals on patio furniture. We didn't make it home until after 8 for sure, but maybe closer to 9.

I know all this seems incredibly superficial outside my personal context, but trust me when I say, yesterday and the past two was pretty huge in terms of change for me. And I like the trend!I look forward to continuing the changes, and to a lesser degree, the physical benefits that come from it.