Thursday, June 11, 2015

The Weight


 
Those have met me in person would certainly not describe me as a skinny guy. But believe it or not, that was the way I grew up. thundering36, myself and are siblings were all relatively skinny kids. Things changed for me just after I turned 18 and was ready to begin college.
 
I've always had a huge appetite. However, in high school I was involved in sports, student organizations, working, ... I was always on the go. The sports, in particular, helped me keep a trim, athletic figure. But when I went to college, the sports dropped off quite a bit. I almost immediately put on the "freshman 15." On my first trip home after being away at college for a couple of months, I ran into a high school acquaintance whose first words to me were "lightning, you have a fat butt." And so it began.
 
In my last semester in college, I broke up with my long-time girlfriend. I looked at myself in a mirror and saw a guy with a bloated face and scraggly beard. I pretty much knew if I ever wanted to have a decent chance of seeing female flesh again that I would have to make an abrupt change in my life.
 
I lived in a fraternity house, which basically was there for all kinds of debauchery. I exercised in the morning and at night, and while my fellow frat members were drinking beer, I was drinking diet grapefruit juice. The weight starting coming off.
 
When I started grad school, I had to walk about a mile from my house to and from classes each day. I had little money, so the eating was sparse. I was fortunate to live with a guy who was into whole foods and cooking from scratch. Pretty soon I was in really great shape. I distinctly remember one day when one of my female friends pinched my butt. I almost cried, thinking that I had finally made it. I look at my son, who is almost 21 years old and lanky. Hard to believe that I was that way long ago.
 
As I began my professional career, I was the director of intramurals where I worked. That and little money again meant that I was trim and in excellent shape. However, changing jobs, getting married and having kids all seemed to suck away my energy as I got older. The capper was when I got involved in online poker and spent every evening playing in tournaments.
 
A few years ago, my weigh really ballooned up to the highest it had been. I joked to colleagues that I was a prime candidate for a heart attack or stroke. Unfortunately, I was accurate. I had a mild heart attack and had stents placed in my heart. I got lucky. Unfortunately, too much damage had been done to another artery and a third stent was put in.
 
I joked that now I could begin again with all the bad habits that I acquired over the years since I had a relatively clean slate. Unfortunately, the combination of age, fatigue and stress from work fed into some laziness, and my weight began creeping back up. After this most recent Las Vegas trip, I weighed myself only to find that my weight had reached about the second highest ever -- behind the period when I had my heart attack. It was time for a change.
 
My wife recently lost between 30 and 40 pounds doing the Ideal Protein (IP) Diet. She put back on a few pounds and decided to go back to some IP principles. This time, however, she is joined by her husband. It was about time for me to get back on the stick.
 
I had some medication decreased which may have been causing me fatigue. Cutting out the carbs in my diet has been a struggle. But ... I have already dropped several pounds and am feeling better for it.
 
Last night was interesting. In my senior softball league I am actually one of the "young guys." I looked at the line up card last night. I was being moved from my familiar "extra fielder" position (usually playing right behind second base) to right field. Additionally, I was listed as the substitute runner for one of the guys on the team in case he got on base. So in the first inning lightning36 was actually pinch running for someone -- really!
 
Healthy food and sheeeeeit already today along with a walk in the rising morning heat. The direction is clear; I just have to continue to make positive strides toward the end destination.


5 Comments:

Blogger seattleirish said...

Lightning:

Good luck on that journey, sir! It does get a little tougher with age, but it sounds as if you have a good perspective on this change. I'll be rooting for you.

s.i.

10:53 AM  
Blogger ~Coach said...

Very nice. Are you going to be writing about your Vegas trip?

12:16 PM  
Blogger The Poker Meister said...

Good luck on the weight loss. I just turned 39, and I've been having the same concerns. I completed a tough mudder event 2 weeks ago - and still have yet to recover fully. I feel lethargic at times, and although my physical weight carried is not over-the-top (I'm about 10-15 pounds over my marriage weight, 13 years ago), I still feel "fat" or "big." In summary - I can relate to you! I need to start watching my intake too.

12:36 PM  
Blogger lightning36 said...

@si -- ty, sir.

@~Coach -- Yes, I am going to start writing posts about my recent Las Vegas trip tonight.

@The PM -- You're getting toward the age when things can just kind of slip by you before you know it. The hard part is making yourself do something about it when you only see the weight gains in small increments.

12:53 PM  
Blogger Alysia Chang said...

There's always the food poisoning diet I went on...and I thought gluten-free was awesome!

10:49 AM  

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