My New Year's Resolution: Difficulties Starting a Weight Loss Regime
You mean, I really have to lose weight now? Yeah- and an almost as strong internal "Oh, man! But that means I have to..." And then all of these shadowy images of deprivation start prowling through my brain. I can't eat what? I have to go to bed hungry?
Ahem. Let me start again, more formally. My name is Greg, and I'm 47 years old. I am 5' 11" tall, I weigh 250 pounds, and I've decided that 2010 is the year I finally lose all that extra weight.
Why now? Fear, pure and simple. My mom had a heart something several years ago, but it was minor enough that her doctors didn't diagnose it as a heart attack until days later. I could pretend something that small didn't apply to me. My dad, whose belly provided the model for the fine hill of flesh I'm currently buried under, suffered adult onset diabetes a few years ago. I could tell myself that since I was a lot more active than he was, that didn't really apply to me either. But then my Uncle Scott had a heart attack, a "real one," a couple of months ago. My uncle is my mom's youngest brother-and is younger than I am. Scott and I used to play in the backyard together, and somehow, that made it real. Scott lived through the heart attack (thank God), but there's not really any way for me to pretend I don't have to lose weight.
And I want to. I've wanted to lose weight for years. I'm very active, and I used to be an athlete (back in the Stone Age), but have been carrying extra weight for several years now. I topped out at 270, slowly melted that down to 250, and froze there for the past 3-4 years. I want to lose weight so I can do more things, so I can have more energy, so I can feel better--and so I don't wince when I realize that pudgy guy in the mirror hitching his pants is me. I've also had a couple of injuries in the past few years (strained feet, creaking back) that the doctors have said were caused or worsened by me being overweight. (To be specific, when I asked what caused the injuries, one of them said, "Um, you are carrying an awful lot of extra weight. You are clinically obese." I winced then too, more than for the actual injuries. I'd like all of this wincing to stop.
A bit more about me, so you know what we're starting with. When I was in junior high and high school, I was on the wrestling team. This meant I had to make a specific weight to compete. I skipped meals a day or two each week during wrestling season, but I was always hungry except for right after a match. Everything I ate was a reward-and something I snuck. These distant memories are part of what makes me so afraid of losing weight. I don't want those days of starvation to come again.
My wife and I both love to cook, and to host. That often means desserts. Food is celebration and reward. I enjoy this, but it will be a factor in my weight loss. I also have a sweet tooth, and that will be a bigger issue.
I know a modest amount about nutrition, but to be honest, ignorance is not the issue. My habits are the biggest issue. Yesterday I had a sub for lunch. Once I was done, I realized I was more than full. I felt, well, stuffed. After the fact, I realized I'd eaten too much. How much too much? Maybe twice as much?
I did it again at dinner. Everything tasted so good, and we were talking, and then when I got done, I felt stuffed.
And I still had chocolate later, because that's what I do. So, habit will be one of my main enemies.
On the plus side, I'm very active. We've got a young dog and I walk him about 80-90 minutes a day. I lift some weights, and do some ab work, and go to a martial arts class once in a while. I'm not afraid of exercise. I even enjoy it. I just...flood it with chocolate until it doesn't do quite enough.
And that's me at the start of 2010. By the end of 2010, I'd like to be 50 pounds lighter, to have some new eating habits, and to not be afraid of eating healthy. My intermediate goals would be to not wince in the mirror, and to stop eating when I'm full.