Thursday, August 13, 2015

By the Time I Get To Regina, I Will Have been Clean For Six Weeks

My name is Brian and I am a carboholic.

I love eating doughnuts, cookies, cake, bread, pasta, and potatoes.

I love drinking wine and beer and assorted cocktails.

I love them all, but they don't love me.  They don't care about my health.  They give me intense pleasure, yet are totally indifferent if I develop diabetes or drop dead from a heart attack.  Yes, we have a love/hate relationship: I love their taste and texture, but I hate what they do to my body.

So, I have decided to make a clean break.  Well, not 100% clean.  I still allow myself one cheat meal per week, a precious moment when I can indulge my cravings for pizza or pasta with a glass of wine, even a clubhouse sandwich with fries, but for all my other meals and snacks during the week, I do not eat any high calorie carbs.

So far so good.  I'm coming up to the six week mark of eating clean, which more or less coincides with arriving in Regina on my Cross Canada Challenge: 3100 kilometers down, 1334 kilometers left to go.

As well, I have cut back on how many kilometers I walk during the week, but increased my number of workouts from one to three per week.

What kind of difference is this making?  I don't know.  The other thing that I decided to do is put away my scale until the end of the year.  All I want to know is what change occurred after a year's effort.  I don't want to deal with the frustration if I am not making much progress. 

At this point, I know I am all in.  I am very, very active with the amount of walking that I do.  I even have a desk at work and in my home that allows me to stand while I am working (all my blogs are now written while standing up).  I have reduced my alcohol consumption by 80% and have almost eliminated high calorie carbs from my diet.

However, this is as far as I go.  I have a life to live and, although I would like to make some health gains, I will not go so far as weighing my food and counting calories.  Having a healthy body is not a life project in itself.  Rather, it is a means to an end, like being able to enjoy time spent with loved ones.

As a result, I think it's time I addressed the question of what does it mean to be lean and fit.  Should we focus exclusively on the number on the scale or should we take other things into consideration?  For example, do we place too much importance on the Body Mass Index (BMI) to tell us whether we are healthy?  Perhaps, we need to consider notions of body set weight and our leanest livable weight.

In my next blog post, I'll explore these issues.

Bye for now.  

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