I feel like writing an e-card or meme.
This morning I had healthy food options…
I just didn’t choose any of them.
I feel like writing an e-card or meme.
This morning I had healthy food options…
I just didn’t choose any of them.
Last week I whined about the juice bar in our gym on base selling what I presumed were pizzas at lunch time during my workout.
I’m all for unhealthy food choices as an exercise motivator. We used to celebrate Push For Your Pie Fridays at work, where we’d have a goal of total push-ups performed by the office team, with a pie to share at the end of the day as a reward. (I may re institute this plan in my next job.)
I’m the Spin Instructor who confessed I was only turning the pedals so I could justify a Caramel Macchiato later.
But at the 45:00 point in an hour on the elliptical, the aroma of fresh toasted panini is over the line of what is reasonable!
The political side of me says this is smart and this is capitalism. They have a perfect crowd of hungry customers.
But my rage will not forgive this affront.
It’s the Anti-Thin, the Abomination of Dietary Desolation. It is a wrong thing, a trap for the unwary. And there is nothing but despair within.
This is why I can’t come in here with money.
I want to burn that place to the ground.
I guess I’ll go eat my stinking can of tuna with some steamed green beans instead. And it will taste like ash, as my heart seethes with hatred.
They should know better than to mess with people on a diet.
After Physical Therapy this morning, I hopped over to the base gym to put the rest of my body through some paces.
Having not eaten breakfast, going just before lunch time might have been a mistake.
The gym at some point opened a lunch bar. I walk in to the area with all the exercise equipment and immediately smell all manner of deliciousness. Is that pizza? I heard folks talking about gyros. This on top of the smoothies and shakes they already offered?
Whose side are these people on?!
I guess it’s no worse than me a few years ago as a Spin Instructor, bringing doughnuts to my class as “added motivation.” Maybe this is karma.
Self-control won out over hunger, at least for today.
If you go to a gym or fitness center, do they serve food and tantalize their customers with the aroma? Or do you find yourself tempted when you jog or bike past some restaurant in the local area?
Share a story in a comment. I need some company in my misery. 😀
Sort of related to the last post…
When on a strict diet, and you’re willing to go to the Pho restaurant down the hill to get the wifey a delicious cashew chicken, knowing you can’t partake in the fabulous Mongolian Beef, but instead have a plate of vegetables and maybe some Weight Watchers low-calorie pretend food waiting…
Well, that has to be true love.
Does one of your New Year’s resolutions have something to do with fitness?
Are you out to achieve a specific number of pounds off the scale or inches off your waistline?
There’s an old adage that the true magic occurs not in the gym but in the kitchen.
Diet has a great deal to do with fitness… not “diet” like “planned starvation” but diet like taking into account what all you’re eating and making healthy choices.
While counting calories is never fun, I suggest taking advantage of useful resources like the MyFitnessPal app or sites like www.sparkpeople.com to track food consumption.
The app gives you a calorie goal based on your activity level, current weight, and goals. There’s a database of foods, you can scan UPCs to make entries, and you can create your own recipes for future use. Sites like sparkpeople have similar capabilities along with resources and articles.
Even if I don’t make my goal on a given day, entering everything keeps me honest and conscious of what all I’m taking in. For a non-marathon-running, non-Crossfit-joining average guy like me, the key to any fitness success has been regular exercise combined with calorie counting.
Give it a shot if you’re not already doing it. I’d love to hear how you like it.
Also, if you already have a tool or method, I’m curious what works best for you.
And best of luck meeting those goals, whether it’s a New Year resolution or a simple desire for a fit lifestyle.
I chugged the last of my third can of Diet Mountain Dew (or Mtn Dew, as the label now reads), and I listened to the radio news on the way home from work.
“A court in New York struck down the city’s ruling limiting beverage sizes in restaurants to 16 ounces.”
Well good. That was stupid.
Then I hear that somebody or other “vows to appeal and continue this fight.”
New York City must be an absolutely amazing place. If the biggest problem on their plate these days is fighting against a venti or the dreaded 32 oz giant soda from the gas station, then we should all be moving there ASAP. Forget crime, and gun control (or lack thereof). Forget about cities going bankrupt or businesses struggling, or unemployment rates.
Someone out there might drink a 24 oz cup of Coke!
What’s to stop me from getting a 16 oz soda at lunch, and then another one an hour later, and then another one on the way home from work? What prevents me from buying a twelve-pack of deadly sugary Coke to put in the fridge at work?
Like I said, I heard this as I finished my third can in about as many hours. Maybe that’s a sign of a problem. Thankfully they were zero calorie diet versions, because otherwise I would have thirty-six ounces of death in my veins!
Nothing in the current law stops people from drinking as much soda as they want. It just wastes time and effort trying to limit the size of the cup. Will this curb obesity? I don’t know… are we also limiting the size of fast food orders, and are we imposing guidelines on how many calories someone can eat in a given day? Are we enacting junk food taxes on chips and candy? Heck, I used a Starbucks venti as an example, since the 20 oz White Chocolate Mocha I used to enjoy is about the equivalent of drinking a Burger King Whopper. But the law appears to be aimed at sugary soda only.
This is like saying that in order to reduce traffic violations, any motorcycle exceeding the speed limit will be pulled over. What about all the other vehicles on the road? The law does nothing to really address the problem it’s aimed at. And it’s a stupid law because anyone can easily drink more than 16 oz of soda at any time.
Yet NYC has the resources and time and energy to appeal the appeal of the original decision in order to “continue the fight against this obesity epidemic!” Oh, so very brave! The Big Apple is lucky to have Don Quixote champions like Bloomberg, riding in to rescue the city from terrible imaginary danger.
I’ll raise my 32 oz large theater cup to that lofty goal.
If I try to structure my blog posts at all, then Saturday is when I post a “Storyline.” Usually it’s a piece of creative writing or something related to the books bouncing around in my head.
Today, I’m going to share a bit of my story. It’s late, but it’s still Saturday. And I’ve backed off from rigidly following that daily structure in these posts. And it’s my blog so I DO WHAT I WANT!
Specifically, I’m thinking about the upcoming surgery I have scheduled on March 5th, and the recovery process that will follow. And I ask myself if this is really necessary.
For almost twenty years now, I’ve noticed occasional stiffness and pain in my ankle after high-impact activities. It was usually a short ache or a feeling like the joint locked in place and simply needed a good pop. I’d pop the ankle and massage the joint, and move on with my day.
About 2000, I realized it was gradually but steadily getting worse. I soon learned that some of my favorite sports were out of the question. No basketball, no racquetball, no volleyball… I had to quit doing anything that called for pivoting the ankle or making fast movements and changes of direction. I was never very good at any of those sports, so it didn’t feel like a big loss.
Not long after that, the Air Force revamped the fitness program, pushing for more running. Squadron fitness sessions followed suit, and I spent two or three days a week pounding pavement around Kadena. The next day following the run would be full of stiffness, constant aching, and sharp stabbing pains. My ankles would sometimes give out, and I’d stumble. Or the pain would be such that I would slowly work my way down the stairs, eliciting comments and questions from my coworkers.
Imagine you’re walking along and someone raps your ankle with a hammer – not hard enough to break anything or make you fall over, but enough to grab your complete attention for a minute or two until the pain subsides. That’s how it feels most days after I run.
I tried checking with the military doctors, but they were convinced I was not stretching enough. Or I weighed more than I should, and the problem was just the excess weight. They taught me exercises to mitigate the effects of plantar fasciitis, and they suggested diet programs. But the answers boiled down to “Live with it.”
So I did.
I’m not the doctor. I don’t have the medical degree on the wall. I assume they know what they’re talking about.
This went on for a few more years, until the day that I had to crawl around my house rather than put weight on my feet after a simple walk through the Commissary for a grocery shopping trip. My wife got me to re-attack with the doctors, and this time, I got a referral to a podiatrist who ran a CAT scan.
He pulled me into the office and pointed out several noticeable problems with my foot and ankle structure. Then he called attention to the various shadows in the ankle bones, and explained, “That’s advanced degenerative arthritis. It’s much worse than it should be for someone your age.”
Way to make me feel old.
The good news was the doctor had a plan.
The bad news was, so did the Air Force. It took nine months to align dates so that I could get surgery, but I finally got it. We had to work around military education, mission needs, a new office, and squadron deployments. The plan was to get the right foot fixed, then give me time to recover and return to flying duties. After a few months back on flight status, we would get the left knocked out.
I had surgery on my right foot in 2010. The surgeon went in through the right side and carved off some excess bone which was pushing other parts of the ankle out of place. Then he stuck a titanium screw up through my heel to fuse together two of the bones in my ankle.
The recovery process took about five months. By then, increased demands on the squadron got in the way of the original plan. First I needed to fly local sorties, then I was sent on a deployment. By the time I returned, it was time to start preparing to move to a new duty location. I did not want to try to move my family of six across the world while on crutches wearing a cast. Needless to say, the left ankle never got done.
Sadly, the bones didn’t fuse like they were supposed to, so now instead of fixing the left ankle, we get to revisit the right and try to do it “right” (Ha ha). The doc has to take out the old screw, graft in some bone, and put in a new screw. Second time’s the charm, or so we hope. We’re going to help the odds a bit with an infusion of vitamin D and an ultrasonic device meant to stimulate bone growth and recovery.
I know this is going to be a long and difficult process. I have to watch my diet while in a cast, because I will not be able to exercise or be anywhere near as active as I am now. I have to throw myself into physical therapy and personal exercise as soon as that cast comes off, because I will have my next fitness test coming due.
I need a sweet action-movie montage where the hero gets into shape for the big battle against the forces of evil (or the fitness testing cell). I have a story to write in the next few months, but not with words. It’ll be with sets of push-ups and planks, hours of spinning on a cycle or elliptical, weeks of tracking every calorie consumed or burned, every pound gained or lost. It’ll also be dealing with the looks or unspoken judgments of those who don’t know all the details – accepting that some people will assume instead of ask, condemn instead of encourage.
I know I can write this story, because I did it three years ago.
But I’m not looking forward to it.
Stories resonate so well because everyone has one of their own. There’s a drama going on in every life that you and I may not be privy to. It’s easy to jump to a conclusion, but just like any good book, if you do that, you miss the most important details.
The movie montage seems so nice because it shortens all the hours of suck into a few minutes of hard work, set to a driving beat. Of course, life has no such short-cuts, and achievements do not come so easily.
I know I’m not the only one who has a similar story of long, hard work to recover from injury or achieve a difficult goal. What kept you going when it would have been easy to quit? What did you find inspired you to push harder, work longer, and succeed?
Everyone has a story, and I’d love to hear yours.