Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Sine Qua Non: Exericise (without which, it ain't happening)

I am certain -- as certain as one can be without examining the actual DNA -- that I have the fat gene. This is the little piece of code in one's DNA that predisposes one to packing on the pounds. This is why some people are happy with little portions of healthy food, while others of us crave piles of pasta and sacks of Big Macs. This is why some people eat all they want and stay thin as a rail, which others of us look the wrong way at a piece of cake and put on a pound.

This fat gene, called the FTO gene or more affectionately the "Fatso" gene, is on the 16th chromosome. This explains why I have always harbored a secret dislike of 16 (through not nearly as much as I dislike 43 and his dad, 41).

But just when you thought all was lost, the Amish come to the rescue. Researchers discovered that, among Amish men and women, those who were very physically active were able to circumvent the negative impact of the Fatso gene. Exercise, therefore, is the first number of the combination lock, the secret ingredient -- the sine qua non, that without which it ain't happening. (This is the sort of losey-goosey translation that would make my Latin teachers at Choate cringe and suggest I try Spanish or French.)

So my first step is to take my first step. Walk, that is. Rather than worry too much about what I eat, I am going to focus all my effort on establishing the habit of getting regular exercise. At first, this will be walking a lot. At least once a day for 20 minutes. We'll see where we go from there.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Gaining and losing: the great, cosmic weight loss yo-yo

As I was walking from Park Street to South Station, I glanced at my reflection in the storefront windows, and it dawned on me: it ain't even Christmas, but I'm already working on my Santa belly!

Fast on the heels of that thought was my realization that, despite my confidence at the outset of this blog, I can no longer deny the underlying irony -- I have no idea what I am doing when it comes to getting down to and maintaining a healthy weight.

Well, that's not exactly true. I know a lot. I am just not particularly successful at applying my vast knowledge.

Okay, here's what I do know. To get down to and maintain a healthy weight, you need to do one or more of the following:
  • Exercise regularly to rev your metabolism and keep your head in the game
  • Drink water to stay hydrated and avoid thirst masquerading as hunger
  • Eat less calories (to lose) or no more (to maintain) than you burn
  • Eat vegetables and fruits
  • Eat lean protein
  • Eat whole grains
  • Drink some skim milk
  • Avoid refined starch, sugar and alcohol
  • Limit fat
  • Eat six small, as opposed to three (or less) large meals daily

Is there anything else? I think that's pretty much it.

If it's so freaking simple, how is it that I cannot manage to get down to a healthy weight and stay there?

Perhaps the secret lies in why I, or anyone for that matter, eats. What do we hope to get out of the meal. Perhaps it is one or more of the following:

  • Energy
  • Nutrition
  • A full belly
  • Serotonin
  • A pleasant, sensual experience
  • Relief from stress (see serotonin)
  • Relief from boredom
  • Relief from fatigue (see energy and/or nutrition)

Are those the only reasons? Seems like the bulk of them.

So, given my encyclopedic knowledge and first hand experience, this should be easy. But, judging from the reflection in the storefront windows, it is not.

So, I will go back to the drawing board and I'll be back with the new plan. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

The Time Has Come: The Healthy Elvis Diet

I have concluded my final diet bet. It was a draw. Now I have to figure out how to motivate myself to get back on track and again begin moving down to 208.

In other words, it's time to resurrect my own diet creation: The Healthy Elvis Diet.

The Healthy Elvis Diet began with a simple premise. Anyone can lose weight if they make healthy versions of the foods they normally eat. I remember thinking to myself, "Even Elvis." And just like that, a diet was born.

I bought a book of Elvis's favorite recipes and healthified them. The obvious place to begin was the king's signature sandwich: peanut butter and 'nana. I substituted whole wheat for Wonder, natural salt-free peanut butter for Skippy, and the toaster for the skillet full of butter. Voila.

That is the first step in this diet. Eat a healthified peanut butter and banana sandwich every day. I like mine at breakfast, but you can have it any time, really.

Do that for a week, then we'll go on to step two. Oh yeah, and drink 48 ounces of water a day. Just those two things: PBB and H2O.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Lose [the bet] to lose [the weight]

Okay, the time has finally come to say "Enough is enough."

You can not lose weight and keep it off by crazy dieting. Everybody knows this, but most of us -- myself included -- still harbor the secret desire to drop the weight fast and then get sensible. But I (and I suspect more than a few of you) are living proof it doesn't work that way.

The last weight bet I'll ever make concludes on September 2. I have 15 or so pounds to drop between now and then. And you know what? I could do it. I'm serious. I could eat cabbage soup, work out like Michael Phelps and drench layer after layer of sweatclothes, and I could drop that insane amount. And even as I say it, there's a part of me egging me on, saying "Yeah, man. Do it! Win!" But in this case, losing (the weight) is losing (the war).

To be healthy, we have to...be healthy. We have to eat in moderation. Not too much, not too little. We have to exercise regularly -- and at a healthy intensity and duration. And until we embrace this truth, we will never reach a healthy weight long enough to enjoy it. We will always bounce back up.

So I am refusing to do it. I am turning my back on the cash (glorious cash) and the short-term satisfaction of Pyrrhic victory. Instead, I am cutting my losses (literally and figuratively) and going back to slow and steady. Going back to counting points and tracking what I eat on weightwatchers.com. Going back to trying to be healthy -- not just thinner.

In other words, I have to be the loser to actually lose and thereby win.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Compute Your BMI -- without an advanced degree in mathematics

For those of you motivated by my last inspiring post to determine your own Body Mass Index, here's an easy BMI calculator from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute:

BMI Calculator

Thursday, August 7, 2008

My Goal: Become Overweight

Body Mass Index (BMI) was invented so people of different heights could compare there relative fatness...I mean fitness...in some meaningful way. Somehow, some scientist somewhere said, "What if we take a person's weight in kilograms and divide it by the square of his or her height in meters?" (An obvious solution....) And so BMI was born. To convert that crazy formula to English measurements (i.e., to use pounds and inches), you just have to multiply the whole crazy mess by 705. In other words, here's the formula:
BMI = Weight (lbs.) / Height (in.)2 x 705
So, according to BMI, I am currently Obese. At 280, my highest weight and the point from which I began this recent weight loss, I had a BMI of 37. As you can see from the chart above, that put me at the high side of Obese. Eleven more pounds, and I would have been categorized as Morbidly Obese. Yikes.
Now, at 253, I have a BMI of 34 and I am now officially closer to being merely Overweight. To actually attain my goal of being merely Overweight, I'd have to weight 217. That means losing 36 more pounds.
But at 217, I feel and look pretty damned good, to tell the truth. To get down to Normal, or 187 pounds, would put me at a weight I haven't seen since 1982.
Let's just work on getting down to Overweight. We'll see where we go from there.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Second Weigh-In: The Diet Bet Dilema Continues

This is just a quick update on, yes, another diet bet. And no, it's not "my friend," it's me. And yes, I have to drop an unrealistic amount or weight to win, thereby violating healthy weight loss rule #1, never try to lose an unrealistic amount of weight.

Be that as it may, here's the scoop: I have to weigh 247 1/2 by Tuesday, July 5. Last I weighed, I was 258. So once again, it's 10 pounds (10 1/2 actually) with 4 days to do it. It reminds me of a line from a Bob Dylan song:

"Here I sit so patiently,
waiting to find what price,
you have to pay to get out of
going through all these things twice."

I guess I'll go with the winning strategy from one of my earlier entries.

After this, though, all bets are off. Seriously. For a while anyway. The goal is to lose slowly and to keep the weight off. Crazy diets and diet bets are not the best way to achieve that. So this is it. The last diet bet.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Back to the basics: losing weight and getting in shape

Okay, so I got a little carried away with the making money part of blogging and forgot my mission: eating right, working out, losing weight, and getting back in kick-ass shape. My original goal was to motivate myself and anyone else who wanted to come along for the ride. And that's what I'm going to get back to.

"But what about the how-much-money-I'm-making-from-this-blog posts?" some of you are wondering. "I liked that part."

Not to worry. I've spun that off and created a new blog called Blogging for Fun and Profit. In that blog, I'll let you know how much your clicks on my Google Ads and purchases from my Amazon.com recommendations have netted so far. In this blog, I'll let you know how much weight I've lost and what my body mass index (BMI) has dropped to.

Also, some of you have asked that I include the weight I lost prior to starting the blog. On December 23, 2007, already stuffed with holiday feasting, I tipped the scales at a hefty 280. At 6'1", I had a BMI of 37.

At last weighing, I was 260. So I've lost a total of 20 pounds and my new BMI is 34.

My long-term goal, as I've mentioned before, is to get down to 208, the highest acceptable weight for my height according to the United States Marine Corps. That would give me a BMI of 28.

I'll look at the whole crazy subject of weight charts and BMI another time.

Eat right. :)

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Pounds pouring off, payola piling up

Perhaps I am easily impressed, but I can't believe I have made $22.30 by writing about my battle to get back to the lean, mean Jason Hunt of my youth. It took me years to write my two mystery novels about Deke Rivers, and yet my blog earnings have already outstipped my novel earnings...by $22.30.

Maybe I almost missed my true calling. Think about it. All America has been transfixed on the Herculean efforts and phenomonal transformations of contestants on NBC's The Biggest Loser. Maybe, just maybe, I am meant to at last attain my fame and fortune not by writing hardboiled classics, and not by matching the weight loss heroics of those biggest losers, but rather by endlessly struggling for merely meager results -- and writing about that.

Maybe I am supposed to be America's Most Moderate Loser. Or America's Least Impressive but Funniest Loser.

Hmm. I'll continue to comtemplate the possibilities, and you can continue to click on the ads, and together we'll see just how far this thing goes. If any of you have other ideas for how to make this blog into even more of a cash cow, please post a comment.

And yes, with $22.30 of revenue, I think I am now successful enough to once again dust off and reveal to the world my secret weapon in the battle against pudgacity and out-of-shape-itude. Yes, beginning with my next post, I will start sharing the secrets of "The Healthy Elvis Diet."

"Thank you. Thank you very much."

Till then, eat moderately, exercise enthusiastically, and click gratuituously.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Blogging and jogging for bucks

Okay, so let's make this interesting for my homies in Corporate America. It is not enough that I am slogging through the early morning fog, knees throbbing and sweat raining down, in an effort to shed unwanted pounds. (If the slow, steady tedium of diet and daily exercise is agonizing on the participant, how much more so must it be for the spectator.) To keep readers, I need to spice up this blog, add some hard numbers and inject massive doses of motivation, to make it more engaging for you -- and potentially more lucrative for me.

So I've added stats. I've started with the birth of this blog, and I am tracking the following figures:
  • How many days the blog has been up

  • How many posts I've published in that time

  • How much weight I've lost

  • How much money I've earned from people clicking on the ads

  • The rate in lbs./wk I'm losing

  • How much money I've earned in $/lb.


My goals for this little experiment are as follows:
  • Lose 60 lbs.

  • Maintain a rate of 1.5 lbs/wk

  • Earn, via ads, $10/lb.

The last goal seems the most ambitious, but that's where you come in. Everytime you check out my latest, ever-more-motivating entry, click on all four ads in the upper righthand corner. (You have to use the down arrow each time to get to new ads -- a usability faux pas, if you ask me.) Then send a link to the blog to everyone you know who is even remotely interested in losing weight and getting in shape -- and remind them to click on the ads. You can explain to them that it is an experiment in grassroots e-commerce.

I know $10/lb. sounds tough. But together we can do this. :-)

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

What's my motivation?

Let's see. I started this blog on June 9, 2008. In the 36 days since then, I've made 9 entries, lost 7.5 lbs., and earned $11.00 from people clicking on the ads. That's a pound a week and thirty cents a day.

I am getting neither skinny nor rich.

So what's missing? Is it motivation? I have the bet. (Yes, if you didn't see through the pathetic charade, my friend in the bet is me.) I definitely have the desire to be lean and Adonis-like. I wouldn't mind Armstrongian stamina and buns of steel. So what's the problem.

It's hard.

Yes, losing weight and getting in shape -- particularly after a decade-long hiatus -- is no piece of cake. (Ah, cake....) Let's face it, being half-Italian, and growing up to the battle cry of "Mangia," makes everything short of a plateful of pasta look like an infant's portion. Three ounces of something is meant to be mopped up with an extra piece of Italian bread. And why drink 6 glasses of water a day when you can just as easily swill down that much chianti.

But I am hanging tough. I am down 20 pounds from my all-time high of 280. Despite an aching right knee, I still hit the road four or five mornings a week. I even scaled Mount Monadnock last weekend (hence the sore knee).

So I just keep forging ahead. Slow -- painfully slow -- and, for the most part, steady.

So what's my motivation? I am just too damned stubborn to throw in the towel. I am headed for 208, and I intend to get there one painful pound at a time.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Round One is a Tie, Round Two Begins

So my friend and his accomplice both achieved their goals. Yes my friend managed to drop the 10 pounds and tip the scales at 255. The competition logged her second 4-pound weight loss week to exceed her goal by two pounds. Both win, the jackpot rides, and round two is under way.

This time they have five weeks over which they must maintain the rate of loss they picked for the first round. That means by August 4 my friend must lose 7.5 pounds to tip the scale at 247.5.

But while I have focused primarily on my friend, it is his opponent who we can all learn from. The keys to her success are a virtual how-to for losing weight in a way that leads to life-long maintenance. They are as follows:
  • Pick a fitness regimen and stick to it -- rigorously.
  • Eat a moderate, healthy meal or snack every three hours or so.
  • Occasionally cut yourself some slack and enjoy the things you usually avoid.
  • Be consitent. Five or six good days and one or two so-so days, over time, will get you to goal. Three or four excellent days will, over time, never be enough to undo three or four horrible days.

My friend was more than a little surprised he pulled off the tie, but he knows he's gonna have to copy his opponent's strategy if he wants to keep up with her for the long haul.

Congratulations to both!

Sunday, June 29, 2008

The night before

A quick update on "my friend's" weight bet. It ends tomorrow. If he has lost 18 pounds, dropping from 275 to 257, he wins. (At least half the cash.) That means he's had to lose 10 pounds in the past four days. What it really means, is that he will have sweated off a bunch tomorrow morning.

His plan for the morning: many cotton sweats and roadwork. If it stays hot, like it is tonight, he stands an okay chance. Maybe.

Anyway, once this madness is over, he can go back to slow, steady, Point-counting weight loss.

Wish him luck. He's gonna need it.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Two Days till Weigh-In

It is Saturday morning, and my friend -- the one with the weight bet -- is sweating. Not literally yet. He had 10 pounds to lose and four days to do it. Now he has two days and no scale. (He keeps it at work.)

So what's the plan? Starve himself? No way. That'll backfire. Saturday or Sunday night will come around, and he'll snap and pizza, beer and chips will fly into his mouth like planets, stars and asteroids getting sucked into a black hole. So he's just gonna to eat light, avoiding sodium. And he's going to drink. A lot. NOT beer. Water. Probably not diet soda, either. That somehow seems to make him hungrier than drinking water. Maybe that's just psychological. Maybe it's all just psychological.

So the keys are these:
  • Eat light, lots of fruits and vegies.
  • Avoid sodium.
  • Drink water like a big, thirsty sponge.
  • Move. Walk, work around the house, jumping jacks. Anything.
  • Don the sweats at 4:30 Monday morning and SWEAT.

Every bullet is key, but the last will be the clincher. He'll be going to the weigh-in pretty much blind, not knowing if he made it or not, so the morning sweatshop session will be key.

And if he loses, it's not the end of the world. He actually likes his competition and would be happy to see her succeed. But he would be even happier for her to lose all but .5 pounds of her goal and for him to exceed his by the same amount.

Either way, he's going for it.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Lose 10 Pound in 4 Days! What?!

First off, let me go on record as saying I am totally opposed to crazy diets. In the short term, they seem miraculous; in the long term, they are disastrous. I know.

So what's with the title of this post? Well, you see, I have this friend. Not me. A friend. And he made a bet with a co-worker. The terms were these:
  • The bet spanned Q2 2008, three months.
  • He had to lose a pound and a half a week, she had to lose about a pound a week. (Men lose weight more easily, and since he weighs at least one and half times what she weighs, it makes sense he should have to lose one and a half times as much weight.)
  • They each put in $5 a week, for a total end-of-the-bet pot of $130.
  • If neither makes their goal, the pot rides and the bet continues for another quarter.
  • If both make it, they can either split the pot or let it ride.
  • If only one makes goal, that one takes the money and runs.

So the bet terminates on Monday, four days away. The co-worker is two and a half pounds from victory, and she is hitting it hot and heavy: running, eating salads, the whole nine yards. She wants it.

My friend, on the other hand, got off to a good start, but languished in the final stretch. Now, with 4 days to go, he is 10 pounds away from his goal weight.

So my friend comes to me, distraught, panicked. I resist retelling Aesop's grasshopper and the ant story. Instead, I unroll a map and spread it out on the table between us.

"What's this map got to do with it?" he asks.

"Nothing," I answer. "It's just for effect. Like a couple of officers planning a nocturnal assault."

"You have no idea what to do, do you?" he asks.

Rather than waste my breathe responding to his pessimistic fatalism, I lay out his path to victory:

First, you cannot lose 10 pounds of fat in 10 days. Not without lyposuction. A pound of fat is the bodies way of storing 3,500 calories you took in but didn't put out. For example, if I need 2,500 calories a day to exist -- for my heart to beat, my lungs to breathe; to move myself around, etc. -- and I eat 6,000 calories, for instance 10 Big Macs, I will gain one pound of fat. Pure and simple.

Now, by the same token, if I need 2,500 calories a day, but I only take in 2,000 a day, that represents a 500 calorie/day deficient. That means I have to take out a withdrawal at the fat bank that is my midsection. At the end of a week (7 days times 500 calories a day deficit), I will have withdrawn 3,500 calories. In other words, I lost one pound.

That's not true, I hear some of you saying. I went on a crash diet and lost 10 pounds in one week. Yes, you did. But you didn't lose 10 pounds of fat. The majority of that 10 pounds was water and waste. (Yuck.)

To prove my point, I need you to do a little test. Step on a fairly accurate scale. Write down your weight. Now go fill up a container with 32 ounces of water and drink. (Hey, Marines have to do this all the time. The DI says "Drink," and they have to down their entire canteen.) It might take you a while, but when you're done, step back on the scale. Since a gallon of water weighs about 8 pounds, and since a quart is a "quarter" of a gallon, you will weigh 2 pounds more after drinking the water. Did you gain weight? Yes, in that you now weigh more, but no, in that after a trip or two to the potty, you'll be back to normal.

This is all complicated by the fact that high sodium foods make your body retain more water. It is also complicated by the fact, that at any given point in time, there is a good deal of food in various stages of digession coursing its way through your body. (I will not go so far as to suggest experiment #2: weighing before and after using the restroom, but you get the point.)

So, after explaining all this to my friend, I suggest the following:

  • Eat a healthy, low sodium, moderate calorie diet for the next four days.
  • Eat more fruits and vegetables than anything else. (These are high fiber and high water content -- you get the picture.)
  • Get moving -- all four days, but particularly the morning of the weigh in. (I won't recommend one of those crazy vinyl suits, but two or three sets of good cotton sweats wouldn't hurt.)

"That's it," he says. "That's all you've got?"

"Okay, eat cabbage and celery. They're diuretic."

"They cause high blood sugar?"

"No, idiot. Diuretic. They'll make you pee more."


Friday, June 20, 2008

Progress Report, 20 June

Just a quick checkin. You will notice in the graph above that, despite a little blip, I am once again on track. From a high of -- cringe -- 280, I was down to 264.5 on Monday. I have had a good week of eating with restraint and walking or jogging pretty much every morning.
I am hoping that I was able to knock off a few more pounds by this Monday and then hit the magic number of 257 by 30 June.
I have to up the intensity of the morning roadwork, but right now it seems all I can do just to be up and moving. Any motivational ideas will be taken under consideration. [In other words, feel free to comment. And click on those ads! While I can't vouch for them, I can and will readily spend any money I make from them.]

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Can't Lose Weight? Wanna Bet?

Losing weight and getting in shape can improve your health, increase your lifespan, reduce the risk of cancer, diabetes, heart disease and stroke. It can improve your relationships, let you live a fuller, more satisfying life. It can increase your confidence and, as a result, allow you to earn more and progress more quickly in your field.

And yet somehow, while all these benefits may fail to motivate us, bet someone $100 you can do it, and, BAM, you are all over it!

I am the greatest transgressor when it comes to this. I made my first of countless diet bets while I was in high school at Choate. When my plans to become a football hero were dashed by a nasty broken leg -- one of those twisting, shattering, full-cast-for-six-months kind of breaks -- I managed to pack on some extra pounds. When the piano player in my band, Caruso and the Busboys, said there was no way I could get back in shape for our big gig at the end of the month, I bet him a bass guitar I'd lose 20 pounds in 4 weeks.

And I did.

"So what's wrong with that?" you ask. Nothing. Except that I gained it right back. This has been a theme ever since. Gain weight. Get fed up. Make a bet. Loss the weight, collect the prize, and start the upward climb almost immediately.

But I have learned something in the process. With that first bet for the bass guitar, I lost 20 pounds in 4 weeks and gained it back in...five? I don't remember exactly, but it came back fast. The last bet I made was a couple of years ago. I lost about 30 in 3 months, and it took me a whole year and a half to get back to square one.

So what's the significance of this? "It's still a yo-yo," you say, "just a slow yo-yo." The significance is that you have to slow down before you stop. And what I have finally learned is that the thing you have to slow down is the rate at which you lose the weight.

This is America. We are the land of instant gratification. The land of silver bullets. The land of no payments till 2009. Unfortunately, this is not how the body works. Millions of years of evolution have hardwired various survival mechanisms into our DNA. One such mechanism is the "don't starve" mechanism. That's the scientific name, I believe. Simply put, our bodies will do what they can to prevent us from starving to death. That means, at the first sign of starvation, the body turns down the furnace. In other words, our metabolism slows so we need fewer calories. That is how prisoners of war are able to survive for years on bowls of gruel. The body slows down when we cut our intake dramatically.

The only way to circumvent this is to lose weight slowly. The slower the better. One to two pounds a week max.

There is a lot more to all of this, but it'll have to wait. I've got to get something to eat.

To be continued...

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Day Two

I am on the train from Boston to Franklin, my fingers sticking to the keyboard with each keystroke. I took the Red Line to Park Street and then walked from there to South Station so I could pick up an orange and a grapefruit from the sidewalk vendors in front of CVS. I ate them en route (the fruit, not the vendors) and, despite the earnest use of napkins taken from Au Bon Pain inside the train station, my fingers are still sticky with fructose.

I wrote a great blog entry this morning on the train, but I tried to post it at the exact moment my Sprint card lost signal, and the entire piece -- brilliant, as I recall -- disappeared into cyberspace. I have been trying unsuccessfully to recapture its brilliance, but alas, I have failed. Oh well.

So here's the problem with blogging: it's hard to think of something meaningful to say day in and day out, week after week, month after month... [Wait. This is only my third entry... Not a good sign.]

Well, I've stuck to my 38 points so far. I know, women on Weight Watchers are slamming their laptops closed in anger, since men get so many more points than women. Well, we get more heart attacks, too. And we lose our hair more often. And you know those ads with the stupid-looking guy who walks around smiling and waving at everyone? Well, you get the picture. Don't begrudge us a few extra points.

For those of you unfamiliar with Weight Watchers, Points are sort of like shorthand for calories with both fiber- and fat-content taken into consideration. To get a rough estimate of a food's point content, take the total calories and divide by 50, then round up the nearest whole number or the nearest point-five (e.g. 3 or 3.5). To get a closer approximation, take the total calories, add 4 1/6 calories for each gram of fat, then subtract 10 calories for each gram of fiber up to 4 grams. Then divide by 50 and round up.

Here's an example:

Let's say a bag of chips has 150 calories, 12 grams of fat, and 2 grams of fiber. That's 150 plus 12 times 4 1/6 (or 50) minus 2 times 10 (or 20). That's 180. Divide that by 50, and you get 3.5 or 4.

In The Healthy Elvis Diet, a diet I made up based on healthy versions of Elvis Presley's notoriously unhealthy favorite foods, you can use L's instead of points. Since L is the Roman numeral for 50, just divide a food's total calories by 50 to get the total number of L's. (L's -- El's, get it?)

I'll share more about The Healthy Elvis Diet in later posts.

Okay, enough for now. Eat light and prosper.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Day One

Woke at 5:00 a.m. Fumbled around for some black cotton shorts to go with my black cotton teeshirt. Searched for the iPod. Figured out how to work it. Listened to Marine Corps marching cadences and walked 20 minutes. Those damned Marines march fast!

I have actually been at this most recent campaign for a while. Here's a glimpse of the progress to date:

Yes, that little bit of backsliding at the tail-end of the line is what has provoked this new initiative. I have been 280, and I have no intention of going back there.

I ate a can of sardines and 1 1/2 cup of pasta breakfast and wrote it all down at WeightWatchers online, so I'm off to a good start.

More later.

Monday, June 9, 2008

One more round, Tommy, one more round

Okay, let me dispense with the sorry details:
  • I'm past 39.
  • I weight 268.
  • Instead of a six-pack, I've got a pony keg.
  • My feet hurt, my knees ache, and I'm in worse shape than the fat kid in Full Metal Jacket.

I could go on about how I used to be in better shape, but that's a little like taking my head and using Photoshop to attach it to the body of Fabio. Now is now, and now...I am fat and out of shape.

So why should you care about my pathetic condition? Because I am about to completely transform myself. I have decided to get down to 208, the highest acceptable weight in the eyes of the U. S. Marine Corps for someone of my height. I have also decided to build my stamina and chisel my physique so that the 50-year-old Jason Hunt would put the 20-year-old Jason Hunt to shame. And kick his ass, to boot.

So how am I going to do it? Good question. I'm going to follow the old adage: "Go as far as you can see, and when you get there, you'll be able to see a little further." In other words, all I have is my Phase One.

Here's what Phase One entails:

  • Weight Watchers for Men online (a new-fangled way to watch calories and eat a healthy, well-balanced diet)
  • Roadwork to Marine Corps cadences (I've got marching and running cadences on the iPod)

I'll keep you posted on my progress. If you've got some pounds to drop, I hope I can provide a little inspiration. If you don't, perhaps I'll provide a little entertainment.

Either way, buy something from the ads, and you just might provide me with a little extra dough. :-)