A 45-year-old fat man trying to find his inner skinny dude.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012


I don't know how often I'm going to write here.  If you are interested, bless you.  You are very kind.

So, when my twins came home, I put on about 15 pounds (with them).  That's in addition to about ten I'd put on after they were born (early) and in the NICU for a month.  So, not great. 

I went back to Weight Watchers, but I didn't like the new program (fruit is free, but I can eat a LOT of fruit--that doesn't help me).  I understand why they're doing it.  WW's big challenge is to teach people how to eat.  My problem historically is portion control.  I can eat a lot of good stuff.

I've been experimenting with intermittent fasting.  It may be that several small meals a day is not the best idea.  I'll see how it goes.  I'm down a bit, which makes me happy.  I do care about the number on the scale, dammit.  I do.

I want to drop 100 pounds (yes) before my girls are about six or seven.  I think that's doable, and I don't want to be their huge dad.  I want to be able to run around with them.

I bought running shoes at the beginning of the summer.  I run, sort of.  I walk at least.  And it's pretty cool, really.  I'm committed, in my fashion.  But I do think people are right.  Diet matters most.  So I'm watching it.

I hope you're all well.


Wednesday, September 12, 2012


I think if you stop paying attention, it's easy to slip back to eating poorly and eating too much.  I sometimes feel that I only have so much discipline available to me.  I can work out and pay attention to my family and my job, but food will falter.  Or I can do the food, but maybe I'm distracted by being obsessive and am not present for the family.  Or something like that.

It can be hard, in other words, to hold it all together.  At least it's hard for me, because food has basically been my drug of choice for so long.  Oh how I wish I could quit eating altogether.  I'd be set.  Really.

But that won't happen.  So I am trying to be mindful of what I'm eating.  One Hershey's kiss in the office won't be a problem right?  Well, no.  But for me, one does not really exist.  Those things come in families.  Plus, a plum (and I do like a good plum) is about the same calories, with more fiber and less fat. 

Trigger foods.  I've found that with these, I'm better off without.  One slice of pizza leads inexorably to as much as I can get.  Same with some appetizers.  Sometimes it's true of candy or other sweets.  My defenses weaken as the day goes along.  I'm fine in the morning, but after dinner, I often feel the desire to eat, even though I'm not hungry.  I try to pay attention to hunger, to confirm whether I really need something or if the desire is just to eat. 

It's the same with working out.  I am ready to go in the morning.  If I haven't done it by five or six, it probably won't happen.  So there's that.

I'm amazed at the games I can play with myself.  I'm happy when the part of me that cares about me can win over the part of me that, having gotten comfortable, doesn't want to move.  Because I really do care.  I have good reasons to.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


I'm going running tomorrow.  I mean it.  I am.

But I dread it.  Part of it is just that it's hard.  Part of it is that I have the association of running with childhood embarrassment and pain.  (I learned that I could not win at running, so it was best not to try too hard.  It's a lesson I've been trying to unlearn ever since.)  Part of it is that I want to do more than I can.  I guess expectation management would help.

After I go, however, I feel pretty good about myself.  I feel glad that I did it.  I feel glad that I care enough about myself to take care of myself.  And I fantasize about being good at something that I dread to do.

So I'm going tomorrow morning, despite the dread.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Perking along

Mostly I'm holding steady.  I've actually been working out on the schedule I want--well, I mean I did last week.  Saturday, Sunday, and Wednesday.  The rest of the time, I'm doing three or four hours in the car every day.  It's not horrible if I have a good audio book, but it's hell on the workout regimen. 

Yesterday, I was going to do a long bike ride, but it was 85 degrees by the time I was ready, so I opted for the gym.  I have to face it--I'm 46 and pretty heavy.  Why get hurt in the name of health?

I'm trying, too, to focus on health as opposed to weight loss.  I figure the latter will follow.  But damn.  It's hard to get on the scale and be at my top weight in two years.  It's still less than I weighed when I moved to LA nine years ago, but still.  The evil voice in my head thinks I suck.  I'm trying hard not to believe it.  In truth, things in my life are going as well as they ever have.  Seriously.  Want to see me happy?  Here it is!

Anyway, I'm perking along.  (That's something my grandmother used to say.)

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Big Plans

You'd think on a holiday weekend, I'd manage to work out all three days.  I did one day, and I found myself too busy or too tired (falling-asleep tired, not unmotivated) to do it.  Well, maybe a little unmotivated.  I try to observe, and I have realized that my mood has a lot to do with whether I feel compelled to work out.  Why is it a shock?  Bad mood usually equals bad eating for me.  Bad moon generally means no workout.  I think it's part of internalizing bad things, not feeling worthy of taking care of myself.

The thing I try to remember is that no one else is going to do it for me.

Even when I learned over the weekend that a friend of mine died Saturday at age 48, I didn't work out.  Rather, I mulled the event over in shock.  A lot.  (I've also got troubles with my brother.  This didn't help things.)  But other than the above, I'm not going to beat myself up over it.  The weekend is over, and I've got this week to work with.

I know I feel better when I work out, both mentally and physically.  Leaving the house is the hard part.  The rest is easy.  I've probably said that before.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Weekend Athlete

I've decided I have to work out more.  This one weekend a month thing is not going to work for me.  When I do that, the workouts KILL me.  I wind up exhausted and sore.  I feel good for having done it, but man.

Here's something I've noticed lately, as I move out of my comfort zone.  See, I am good at the elliptical.  I can knock out 40 minutes no problem, and I can go longer.  Mostly I get bored.  Seriously.

But I decided to start to run.  Now, there's no way around it--I'm a big guy.  But I went to the fancy running store after doing my research, and I bought good shoes (the Brooks Beast--very comfortable, no pronating).  I use the free Endomondo app to keep track of things (distance, pace, etc).  (Neither Brooks nor Endomondo is paying me, but I am willing to take their money.) 

I have always hated running.  I was the fat kid (often the slowest fat kid) in gym class, and even when I was a shotputter, I was slow and not good.  I dreaded running.  I HATED running.  Aside from the degree of difficulty, it just made me feel bad.  I find that now, I approach running the same way.  I feel like I'm 12 or 14 again.  I dread it.  I put it off.  I worry that I won't be able to do it, that people will see me and laugh.  This is how I grew up, after all.  But that really hasn't happened.  It is really hard to do, and I suck wind, and my legs hurt, but I do better than I thought I could, and I enjoy it more than I expect.  Thanks to some encouragement from people who are real runners, especially Tanya (see 90in9.wordpress.com at right), I feel as though I might be able to do it.

I ran Saturday.  I biked Sunday (same process, but glad to have done it).

I have resolved to do this at least three times a week, four if I can fit it in.

New goal--I want to lose 100 pounds in the next ten years (so when my girls are 11, I can race around with them).  That seems doable.  Never know, I guess.  Right now I'm going to focus on the healthy part.  As big as I am, I am in decent shape.  My pulse is in the low 60s (for the first time ever).  So there's that.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Working on it

Do you work out when you're sick?

Does working out make you sick?

I have had something wrong--cold, sinus infection--since May.  My house, as a friend likes to say, doubles as a petri dish, thanks to two babies.  I find that just about the time I'm getting in the gym groove, I get sick, don't work out, and lose my momentum.

I've resolved to follow what seems to be the conventional wisdom, working out as long as the sick is above the neck.  The most recent bout (while I was on vacation, natch) involved the lungs, too, though, so I didn't work out at all.  I'd had high hopes for working on the running.  Dashed.

I wonder if I get exposed to stuff at the gym, too.  I must, but I wonder if I'm just running myself down.

Don't get me wrong.  I enjoy the gym.  The only bad part is making myself go.  I'm glad to be there and glad to have gone.  I don't need an excuse not to go.

But damn.  I'm tired of feeling crappy.  Maybe the new gig will help.