The One-Month Mark – Diet Day 32
It’s hard to believe but I have now officially been on my diet for one month. On January 13th I made the decision that I needed to make some changes in my life. I had steadily gained weight over the past 30 years and had gone from 175 when I got married to just over 210 pounds a month ago.
I don’t really remember the weight gain; but looking at recent photographs and at myself in the mirror one month ago I was shocked to see the transformation. I was once an athlete who could run tirelessly and eat whatever I wanted. Suddenly I was plump around the middle and had a hard time catching my breath after walking up a flight of stairs.
It was somewhat like the science experiment we did in high school. If you dropped a live frog in a pan of boiling water it would immediately leap out to safety. If however you made the water room temperature and dropped the frog into it, it would stay there swimming. If you slowly heated the water the frog would adapt and before long find itself in boiling water. Yeah I know, if schools tried that today PETA would be all over them but hey that’s what life was like back in “the olden days”.
When I started this diet I did so with a huge amount of skepticism. The years of bad habits and sedentary lifestyle had lulled me into a rut and one I thought nothing could change. I had given up even thinking about losing weight. But after hearing about Take Shape For Life I wondered if it could reverse the damage I had done.
I am not one who has ever lived on a structured schedule. My whole life has been a series of random events that are strung together by time. This program spelled out pretty much the exact opposite of everything I had ever done.
Before I would skip breakfast and rush to work where I would sit for eight hours in front of a computer screen. I would normally be too busy to eat lunch and instead grab a soda and some food from the vending machine. I would arrive home starving from the day and eat a very large dinner, which was mostly red meat 4-5 times a week coupled with mounds of pasta or potatoes. Vegetables were more of a garnish than part of my regular diet. After dinner it would be back to the computer with a bowl of ice cream or sugared cereal. I would work until 2 or 3 AM then catch three or four hours of sleep and repeat.
This diet insisted I eat small meals every 2-3 hours that were carefully proportioned and the calories balanced. Vegetables would make up half of my dinner with small protein consisting of chicken or fish. My system was definitely going to be in for a shock.
I committed to myself that I would lose 25 pounds on this diet or die of starvation whichever came first. The goal was lofty and I doubted that I would remain on it for two weeks let alone seeing my goal. Instead I have been following it to the letter of the law and as a result have seen substantial changes.
I stepped on the scale this morning and it read 191 pounds. That means I have lost just over 19 pounds since I started this program. It’s not just the weight loss that surprised me. Before the diet I was comfortably fitting into an extra large shirt and my pants were rather snug. Now I find that I have room in a large shirt and my jeans nearly fall off me. The shorts that I wore on our trip to Disneyland last October I tried on and they literally fell off despite being buttoned up. I’ve had to replace my belt as I have now gone two belt holes beyond the last one on my previous belt.
It’s not just my body that is going through changes. I’ve begun to evaluate everything that I eat to understand not just the number of calories but the types of calories that I am eating. Before this I thought the nutritional information on packages was simply something to glance at when bored at the grocery store but now find them helpful in determining what foods I should eat.
While my journey is far from over, this first month has been amazing. I now weigh less than I have this century and find I have an abundance of energy. I now have a pedometer that is my constant companion and I am always looking for ways to include a few extra steps into my daily routine. Instead of sitting at my desk for hours at a time I am constantly moving just to be more active.
Before starting this diet I was diagnosed with high blood pressure and the day before I started it was 146/95 and that was while I was taking two medications to control it. This morning I took my blood pressure and found it was 107/74 and I am no longer taking either medication because my blood pressure would be dangerously low if I continued it usage.
The first month has been amazing and I have so many people to thank. My health coach Amy has been an angel. She is there to answer all of the crazy questions I have and leads support when I get frustrated. My wife Trina has been amazing. She measures and monitors everything I eat and constantly gives me positive feedback. My kids too have helped keeping me on the straight and narrow especially Dakota who has made sure all the junk food stays out of my way. You cannot do something like this without a strong support structure and I have the best.