31 May 2007

Time to get professional!

In celebration of my 50th post I have invested in the custom domain www.fatblokethin.co.uk!

The original .blogspot address will still work for links etc.

30 May 2007

Thursday Thirteen - #003


Thirteen things I need to change about myself.

1. My weight - I need to achieve a healthy weight and maintain it.

2. My physical fitness - I need to become stronger to achieve tough physical goals.

3. My mental fitness - develop my understanding of Buddhism and implement it in my life.

4. My relationships - work harder to demonstrate the love that I feel for my wife.

5. My debt - find ways to reduce and remove my debt.

6. My job - find a more rewarding way of making a living.

7. My charitable efforts - demonstrate my instincts by creating a charity and developing it.

8. My son - strengthen my bond with my son through interaction and shared pursuits.

9. My family - strengthen my bond with my parents and sister through actions.

10. My focus - to concentrate more closely on non-materialistic things in life.

11. My character - show care, compassion and consideration to others.

12. My blog - use my experience to offer help and encouragement to others that may need it.

13. My future - put 1-12 in place to ensure it is a positive one....

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!


The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!




Attack of the killer cheesecake!

Dear reader,

I must recount to you a story of pure unadulterated horror within which I barely escape with my life (diet maybe?) intact.

Following consumption of a delightful and most agreeable prawn salad this very day, I was overcome by an external force, an evil force...a force that drove me from the straight path and sent me to the hell that is..... CHEESECAKE!

I didn't want it, I didn't need it - I WASN'T EVEN LOOKING AT IT! But still, like the drunken bum on the late night bus, it HAD to come and sit next to me and start talking.

"Eat ME! You know you want to!!" I was powerless to resist I tell you!

I am sooooo ashamed! I fell used and abused.....

If anyone sees this Cheesecake, please contact your local law enforcement department - consider it ARMED with sugar and DANGEROUS with fat ! Keep your children safe and don't be it's next victim!

I have created a photo-fit (below) - spread this to all your friends - IT MUST BE CAUGHT!



Wanted dead preferably!


29 May 2007

Wordless Wednesday - The Circle....

CLICK IMAGE TO ENLARGE
The London Eye in London, UK - picture taken by me on 30th October 2005.

"Until he extends his circle of compassion to include all living things, man will not himself find peace."

Albert Schweitzer




Zen and the art of wing-mirror fitting....

Good afternoon dear reader,


I have just spent the best part of an hour and a half (and nearly 30 quid) purchasing and fitting a new wing mirror glass for my Land Rover Discovery. The reason I had to purchase and fit this part has everything to do with physics and NOTHING to do with my driving (which is awe-inspiring at all times) - i.e the inability of 3 objects to pass each other in a space that is less than equal to the sum of the 3 objects width (woah..make sense anyone???!)

Anyway, I spent nearly an hour at the dealer just trying to fit the ******* thing. At one point I became so exasperated that I was howling with laughter and swearing like a complete and utter fool! Sadly I didn't notice the salesman (with prospective customer) standing over my right shoulder admiring the latest Freelander....another sale down this month!

The ability to laugh in times of adversity (no matter how trivial, HEY - it seemed important at the time OK?!) is a great strength and I became more relaxed after that and following a deep breath I managed to fit the offending part and get on my way (there was the small matter of coaxing a LR technician from his coffee cup to offer assistance - did I mention that?)

It was a virtuoso lesson in 'less is more' - the swearing, grunting and crashing around was replaced with a deep breath, a set of instructions and a guiding hand.

Drum roll please......(point coming up).

As an allegory, this maybe shows us that any sort of journey we undertake, whether it be physical, mental or even technical (?!) can be achieved though a healthy mixture of good humour , application and a little bit of help and encouragement!

Here endeth the lesson (and no I haven't told the bloke I knocked his wing mirror off - he shouldn't park his poxy van in the middle of the bloody road now should he?! - not very Buddhist is it?)

Poxy - Adj. Rubbishy, crass, of poor quality.

Post weekend Update

Weight - 247.8Lbs (-22.2 Lbs)
Exercise - don't ask....(except for a four mile Bank Holiday walk in the rain!).





So 22 pounds gone (didn't get to 27 for yesterday...) but I am still losing and doing it sustainably. I have kept off the exercise and my leg pain has gone so I will be staggering exercise from now on (no pun intended..).

More when inspiration strikes.


26 May 2007

The meaningful coin.

Just to prove I didn't make it up, here she is (are coins feminine?).






25 May 2007

The power of old coins...

Weight - 251.4 Lbs (-18.6)

Exercise - 45 minute fast walk in my lunch break, slow amble with the dog after dinner. No bike - continued buggeration!

The increase in my exercise has created it's first detrimental side-effect, my shins feel like some barking mad old lady has been kicking them in all night!- I am hoping that this will pass when I lose more weight and exercise more. If not, I may have to start swimming again but this means money (gym fees) and more time in the evening - double bugger!

So an 18.6 Lb loss so far (quite happy with that...) - I was hoping for 20Lb by Monday next but Saturday could go 'pear shaped' diet-wise as I have the choice of sitting through some 'very clever' computer animated 'kid-flick pun'o'rama' with 2 three year old boys going mentalist on food additives or going down the pub with my old mate Russell! Can you guess yet, well can ya, can ya?? I haven't really drunk much alcohol for the last month so whatever happens it's liable to be fairly interesting...!

I will be mostly trying to avoid 'bad' foods and minimising my alcohol intake - Rick at One Mans Battle had a similar experience recently and coped very well - I take inspiration from this!


So where does the coin come in then I hear you cry ?

Well, non-existent reader, this morning I was absent- mindedly perusing my small change when I noticed an odd looking coin - it is a 1942 Half Penny, yes 1942! It is the same colour and shape as a modern UK 2 pence piece so its identity has gone unchallenged so far...

Without getting too 'new age' about it, it does make you think where this coin has been and the pockets it has lived in over the last 65 odd years. Did it go to war? Maybe even liberated France in someones kit bag - who knows?

Links to the past such as this really fascinate me and really show our relative insignificance in the great scheme of things. People come and go but this coin has bumbled through time passing from person to person until it found me 65 years later.

I intend to keep it and use it as something to give to my son when he is 'of age' to keep as a link back to me and his own and his nations history. I don't know what he will make of that.... not much of an inheritance!

The coin reminds me that we in the west live in a time of huge comparative peace and prosperity, 1942 was a time of utter darkness throughout most of the world - thousands were suffering and dieing throughout Europe, North Africa and the Far East (it also reminds me that somethings never change....)

It reminds me that war is not always unjustified - sometimes it is the only solution (horrible though it undoubtedly is). It reminds me that we continue to ask the biggest of questions of our young men and woman in conflicts throughout the world - they continue to act with mostly unquestioning bravery and courage.

It also reminds that the darkest of days come just before the light. It reminds me that courage and perseverance are amongst the most important qualities a human being can have.

Finally, the coin reminds me that my weight loss journey is a tiny droplet in the vast ocean of the universe of human experience and I have no right to whinge and complain when things are not going my way.

Good luck to everyong on a journey - physical or emotional. Little steps each day.


If I remember, I'll upload a lovely picture of the coin later tonight - you're all getting excited already...I can tell!!

23 May 2007

Thursday Thirteen #002





Thirteen Books that will never leave my memory (no particular order)....

1. Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides
2. The Secret History by Donna Tartt
3. The Little Friend by Donna Tartt
4. Balthasar's Odyssey by Amin Maalouf
5. A Prayer for Owen Meaney by John Irving
6. Birdsong by Sebastian Foulks
7. Enduring Love by Ian McEwan
8. If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things by Jon McGregor
9. The Cider House Rules by John Irving (yes him again...)
10. Vernon God Little by DBC Pierre
11. Dispatches by Micheal Herr
12. The World According to Garp by John Irving (Yes, again!)
13. Berlin by Antony Beevor



Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!


The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!



Dharamsala or Bust...

Hello there dear reader,

As the more observant amongst you (i.e those that got past the first sentence about asthmatic pie worriers above before falling asleep...) will know, that as part of my program of weight loss and fitness, I intend to focus my energies on a physical challenge in 2008.

I will be raising money for an Asthma Charity in the UK, I have had Asthma since a small child and have blamed it for over the years for both my woeful fitness levels and excess weight. It has caused neither - quite the reverse, I am fairly sure that the only reason I still need Asthma medication at all is that I am overweight (my excess weight is nearly all carried in the trunk/torso) and not using my lungs anywhere near hard enough....

This is all about to change. Part of why I am compiling this blog is to show Asthma sufferers (particularly young ones) that it doesn't need to be a debilitating condition - for many of us, it is possible to rise above it and achieve high levels of physical activity.

Just as I write this post It occurs to me that I have not used my Salbutomol medication this week - this is remarkable! The loss of 18Lbs and a low fat diet has obviously made a huge difference to how my body is working.

I have decided that I will focus my weight loss and fitness activities around a charitable trek to India to see the Dalai Lama. This trek is based around Dharamsala and includes the chance to hopefully meet HH the Dalai Lama in a public meeting and visit the Taj Mahal!.

This is due to take place in September 2008, so I have plenty of time....at the moment....

22 May 2007

Wordless Wednesday - Family matters...




Cheetahs - by Tom Joynson. Photographed at Newnam Paddox Art Park, UK 2007.

Check out more WW stuff here.


Thin = Happy?

Weight - 252.8 Lbs
Exercise - 2.2 miles on the 'thing'

Good evening dear reader,

When out flitting across (even through maybe?) the blogospshere (ohh i do like that word!) I am coming across a lot of activity and discussion centered around Body Image, Fat Acceptance, Happiness equaling Thinness and the such like.

I must admit that I have never really thought deeply about these matters before embarking on this project.

What really made me think more deeply about this subject was recently reading this post from Sunshine at THE ME I WAS MEANT TO BE.

Here's an extract :-

"I don't want that worldly confidence that people get from great looks and bodies or accolades from the world."

I found this post painful to read and I hope she finds away out of where she finds herself but I think she is absolutely wrong if she equates weight loss with happiness or acceptance.

Leaving aside the question of what is a great body (we could talk about that all day!).. is there anything to connect body image with happiness? I am happy now but VERY unhealthy - my attempt to lose weight is about me improving my health and living longer and has next to nothing to do about how I or others perceive me - is this common or am I 'weird' as my wife likes to call me!

I think this whole question gets some way to the root of human existence (sorry if that sounds pretentious) .....

Are we unhappy because of the way we are or are we the way we are because we are unhappy?

I have until very recently suffered from the blight of what I believe is 'over-thinking' - I would consider every possible outcome of a given situation before acting, usually by which time, the person, opportunity, offer, situation had left, disappeared and /or expired!

This trait leads to a spiral of doubt ,worry and finally depression which, as we all know leads inexorably for many to over-eating and obesity.

I know it is easy to say, but happiness really does come from inside you and true happiness comes from expressing love and compassion for others in our daily lives (HELP, my head has been taken over by a Buddhist monk - don't leave me here!!!).

The monk told me to tell you this, from HH the Dalai Lama.........

“I believe that the very purpose of life is to be happy. From the very core of our being, we desire contentment. In my own limited experience I have found that the more we care for the happiness of others, the greater is our own sense of well-being. Cultivating a close, warm-hearted feeling for others automatically puts the mind at ease. It helps remove whatever fears or insecurities we may have and gives us the strength to cope with any obstacles we encounter. It is the principal source of success in life. Since we are not solely material creatures, it is a mistake to place all our hopes for happiness on external development alone. The key is to develop inner peace.”
I would be interested to know if you think losing your excess weight will make you 'happy' or more successful in any way? Add a comment if you like.

Pictures only tomorrow as I dipping my toe in the Wordless Wednesday waters. Check back to see some wonders as seen through my lens...


21 May 2007

Tea anyone?

It had to happen...

I have always been a big believer in the powers of H2O and constantly bang on to my wife about the need to hydrate all the time. Regardless of the tiny risk of water intoxication (I can't believe anyone would be silly enough to achieve death through voluntarily drinking excess fluid...) water must be good for you!


With this in mind, I was interested to note that tea is now 'healthier' to drink than water! Below is an extract and you can see the full BBC article here.



"Public health nutritionist Dr Carrie Ruxton, and colleagues at Kings College London, looked at published studies on the health effects of tea consumption.
They found clear evidence that drinking three to four cups of tea a day can cut the chances of having a heart attack. Some studies suggested tea consumption protected against cancer, although this effect was less clear-cut. Other health benefits seen included protection against tooth plaque and potentially tooth decay, plus bone strengthening. Dr Ruxton said: "Drinking tea is actually better for you than drinking water. Water is essentially replacing fluid. Tea replaces fluids and contains antioxidants so it's got two things going for it."


I have always assumed that anything that is not 100% water must surely consume some water to break it down once ingested - am I wrong in my school boy science? Well I thought I was until I scrolled down to the bottom of the article and saw the following :-

"The Tea Council provided funding for the work. Dr Ruxton stressed that the work was independent. "


What a surprise....

Post weekend update....

Weight - 252.6 Lbs
Exercise - Dodged the bike all weekend...shameful.

I seem to be over the recent plateau and weight is starting to come off again. I struggled with the organized exercise (the dreaded bike of doom...) but substituted a load of walking and running around with the dog and the son and heir.

I spent most of Sunday tearing around Waddesdon Manor (see below some of my photographs from a previous visit).

It is usually very difficult to eat out low fat in the UK but National Trust properties (and in particular Waddesdon) usually have a good range of 'proper' food. I had a fantastic Caesar Salad and a bottle of spring water.


I am continuing to think carefully about what I eat (and just as crucially how much) and not make exceptions due to pressure or laziness. As every day passes I am finding it easier and I do not feel 'traumatised' in any way by 'denying' myself high fat foods and alcohol.

I have changed my mindset about portions to such an extent that when my wife asked me an opinion on the size of a Sea Bass fillet, she declared me 'weird' when I expressed satisfaction (it was about half the size and would have been normally accepted as enough to stave off death from malnutrition!).


Next goal is a total of 27Lbs loss ( around 10 lbs to go) - this is 10% of my starting body weight and nearly halfway to my goal of a 70 Lbs weight loss by Christmas.

19 May 2007

Keeping positive!

Good evening dear reader and I hope you are keeping well,

I have just been watching a TV interview with Stephen Fry (and George Michael), and he said something quite profound (in my humble opinion) about his life that I think should resonate with us all - certainly those of us who are struggling with mental and physical hurdles in our lives.



He said their lives were in reality a picnic - sometimes there are wasps, and dog tu*ds on the grass and occasionally it rains but still for the most part they are a picnic.



How many of us can honestly say are lives are not picnics - for sure some of us have a lot more wasps and dog tu*ds and the rain may last alot longer but if we look hard enough we all have something to be happy about. Don't we?

And no, I haven't been drinking....

So, ignore the wasps and try and dodge the tu*ds - keep smiling and have a great picnic!

Day 31 - Its good to be alive!

Weight - 255.2 Lbs

Exercise - another 2.2 miles on the gerbil wheel.

I don't know why but I feel really confident that I'm going to lose some weight today.

I think it may be the triumph over adversity that I have achieved today.. I managed to survive the 'holy trinity' of modern stress inducers ......

1. Visiting a large children's department store on a weekend (In this case, Toys 'r' Us AND for afters, Mothercare!).


2. Assembling large poorly manufactured garden toy ware in a force 5 wind ("I want to play on my slide daddy NOW!" - this was not a request...) and finally,

3. Watching the FA Cup Final whilst being assaulted by a psychotic 3.75 year old (see below - yes he looks angelic there but you just wait...whoa! ) whose energy knows no earthly bounds...


Surviving this ordeal leads me to believe that I can survive/achieve anything!

So here he is, my inspiration / my nemesis (depends how the day is going!) .....Oliver.

18 May 2007

ONE MONTH UPDATE....

1 MONTH STATS

Starting Weight - 270 Lbs


Weight today - 256 Lbs


Starting BMI - 38.7


BMI today - 36.7



Number of posts - 38



Well, another milestone, 1 month since this project began. There are clear and discernible peaks and troughs at the moment both mentally and physically. I feel positive that I went to a restaurant last night and eat what I wanted but I ate responsibly and didn't over eat - importantly I didn't feel that I deprived myself. Boiled potatoes rather than chips, no puddings, juice instead of beer etc. It all felt fairly easy and natural to make those decisions. This may be the biggest milestone of all - thinking about what I am eating and why...



The positives (yeah!).



1. I have lost around a stone in weight without really trying that hard.

2. I have started a basic exercise program that I can fit into my life easily.



3. I feel and sleep better than ever before.




The negatives (boo!)



1. My weight has plateaued.



2. The exercise may not be enough to really promote weight loss (I'm lazy).



3. Can I really keep up this discipline for the rest of my life.....



Anyway through some fluke, I have managed to lose 0.2 Lbs today after eating Beef Wellington last night - quick...ring OPRAH, the Beef Wellington Diet - I feel a book coming on!!!




Later.



17 May 2007

My Waterloo...

Oh the shame of it...Beef Wellington!

I resisted the beer, the bread, the garlic mushrooms and then fell spellbound by the bloody Wellington (beef not boot that is...) .

Today is the twelve anniversary of the first date I had with my lovely wife (she wasn't my wife than but you know what I mean...).

A great evening was had in a lovely little village pub eating and chatting away about nothing at all (we did get on to bowel movements at one point - you have to be married for nearly 10 years to cope with that...).

I have not done my exercise tonight - double buggeration! Tomorrow will feel like the Tour De France now.... however, no-one said it would be easy. If t'was the beloved girl scouts would be doing it for me!

Whilst we were eating, it occurred to me that 12 years ago tonight I nearly got arrested for speeding right after our first date - it was a memorable evening for all concerned as the officer that stopped us (a 30 year veteran by the look of him in an unmarked car) was accompanied by a young pup (clearly straight out of police school) - the youngster got very excited and asked all the right questions in proper police-speak. Sadly for him, due to the 'first-date euphoria' of the evening I had a spontaneous attack of the 'stand-up comics' and couldn't help myself from answering all his relevant questions in as silly a manner as possible.

Q - Is this your car sir?
A - I bloody well hope so, I am paying enough for it!

Q - Have you been drinking sir?
A - Are you mad, look at the state of the woman!

Q - I could smell alcohol when I approached the vehicle...
A - Not surprised, she's legless again, what can you do!

yada, yada, yada...

At this point the Sergeant started to giggle and retreated to his unmarked patrol car. It soon became apparent why as a few minutes later a marked Police area traffic car slowly cruised past us, with both occupants laughing uncontrollably at the 'pup'. Impressed he was most certainly was not!

Much to the annoyance of 'Junior Columbo' I then chatted amiably with the Sergeant about the lousy speed limit signs in the area and what he thought of the latest Ford Mondeo (he was driving one, t'was why). At this point, a red faced and clearly agitated 'pup' returned to the car having lost any chance of his first proper 'collar' and I shook hands with the Sergeant and carried along on my way! So much has happened in 12 years.... I feel like a different person (well 2 people in fact...)

Thankfully we got home with no such excitement this time!

Weigh in tomorrow - cripes WHAT HAVE I DONE!

Thursday Thirteen #001


Thirteen Things about FATBLOKEGETSFIT

1. I don't like thirteeen, curious as I am about to create a list of 13 things about myself...
2. I once knocked George Melly over at the Albert Hall in London.
3. My favourite potato crisps are Walkers Salt and Vinegar.
4. I pretend I don't mind flying in aeroplanes but actually I am sh*t scared when they take off.
5. My favourite author is John Irving.
6. I went to Canada once, didn't like it.
7. I once swallowed a boiled egg whole and nearly choked - my sister nearly let me choke as she was laughing so much..
8. I once asked a cop at Yankee stadium, where the yellow cabs were? Oh how we laughed!
9. I have eaten horse meat and liked it (my wife now hates me).
10. I want to be a Buddhist when I grow up but I can't give up meat.
11. This is my fist list, be gentle with me....the last episode of M*A*S*H made me cry!
12. I am trying really hard not to be annoyed by everything and be a Good Human Being.
13. I love my son more than anything else in the world (even red wine and cheese straws). He is my inspiration. Ahhhhhh...bless!


Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!


The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!



GET YOUR SH*T TOGTHER FATBODY!


Weight - 256.2 Lbs

Exercise - 2.25 Miles on the 'tread-iron of death'


Well, a game of two halves Saint and no mistaking. The weight has plateaued and I can seem to do nothing about it at the moment. I am trying not to get the hump and hoping that it's just my body adjusting and my new fitness regime will get me started again.

My weight is stable (which is good) but inaction at the scales is giving me the hump. I am trying to think positive and focus on the reasons I am doing this - this is for my future.

This remains the single most important thing I will ever do and I will succeed.



YESSER, I WILL SUCCEED SIR!

16 May 2007

Right on - NO MORE ADS!

Good evening Reader, hope you are well,

I am officially an ADFREE BLOG.

I hate commercial ads on websites but I can understand them as a website is basically a digital magazine, but a blog is meant to be a journal, an autobiographical publication...would you want an advert at the start of every chapter of a book or one chapter in a book constantly mentioning the latest brand of MP3 player??? I certainly don't which is why I am AD FREE and proud of it!

If you want to be AF too... go here >

Go to AdFreeBlog


Sermon over, good night!


Going nowhere is GREAT motivation for exercise!

I have just stumbled upon a great motivator for exercise. Going Nowhere is a website/blog where fellow travellers can record their efforts to rack-up 500 miles on a fitness contraption whilst getting precisely 'nowhere'.

I have vowed to accumulate 500 miles on the static torture device by the end of the year. By the powers of my mathematical 'genius' I estimate that to be 500 miles in 32 weeks or put more worryingly 15 .5 miles a week or worst still... over 2 miles A DAY....EVERY DAY!

From now, each update post will now show a daily and cumulative mileage for excercise.



Back in the saddle!

Weight - 256.0 Lbs
Exercise - 10 minutes on the 'tread-iron'.

Amazingly with a bit of positive thought and a bit of sweat on the bike last night I have recovered the loss of yesterday. Little steps....



Looking at other blogs about weight loss, there are so many people that have had far bigger mountains to climb than me and also just as many that fade away to secret success or failure.


Both types are an inspiration to me in different ways. I want to emulate the ones that are achieving great things through extreme 'natural' weight loss (i.e. without surgical intervention) and I want to show the ones that faltered that it IS possible and provide some inspiration to 'get back in the saddle'.


I feel in a much better mood today (though I haven't got to work yet...) so my challenge this week is to keep up the exercise and push myself that much more to lose some more weight.


My target weight for next Monday is 250 Lbs. Time for determination.

15 May 2007

Bad news, worse mood...


Weight - 257.4 Lbs.
Exercise - what do you think!


Even though I preach that daily weight fluctuations shouldn't be taken seriously (good or bad), I found myself to to be 1.4 Lbs up today whilst eating very low fat yesterday! Buggeration!

It has put me in a shitty mood that is proving harder to shift than a week old clinker on a bears arse...

I am trying to use this positively to motivate myself to get on with the next stage. It is so frustrating because I have done all the hard mental 'life change' stuff and I just need to get a sweat on! It pathetic really...


I have spent the morning trying to convince myself that it is work that has annoyed me but it isn't - what it is, is good ol' fashioned 'feeling sorry for yourself'.


Time to snap out of it and to get on with it. Salad for lunch and I have an afternoon with my 3 year old so time to think positive thought and push on and get the job done. I will not be defeated.


Honey and lime juice tomorrow and put the loss behind me!

See, I feel better already. This whole blog thing is a big help to sort through all this kind of stuff in your head - amazing! Sorry to get all 'Californian' but what started out as a bit of a chuckle has turned into an integral part of my weight loss program. It is not important for anyone to read it because it is for me , not you (though everyone is welcome). Starting to verbally fart now - sorry...

14 May 2007

Deux point!

Hello reader,

In the spirit of Eurovision, the Belgium public have cast their votes and awarded me Deux Point (two points) - this happily coincides with the reduction in my BMI since Day1! Something else to celebrate at this ungodly hour..


So a stone equals 2 BMI - nice to know. Always looking for something else to plot on my ever more complicated weight loss spreadsheet!

I need a kick up the arse tomorrow to start exercising or this fine effort will stall - I do not akzept zis!


A weekend of two halves...

Weight - 256.0 Lbs
Exercise - went out of my weigh to avoid it!

Well, Friday night turned into wine night and then sadly Saturday night turned into wine night as well (in my defence, no-one should be expected to put up with Eurovision sober...that meets my definition of cruel and unusual punishment!). Judging by who won, I wasn't the only one drunk that night....

Anyway, despite the liquid lapses, I managed to maintain my weight from last week following a concerted effort on Sunday to eat healthily and exercises a bit (dog walking in the rain...perfect!).
I am eating fish, veg and salad this week and I will be doing a one day liquid fast tomorrow to make up for the excess over the weekend.

I am pretty sure I have started to reach the fast plateau in weight loss (this is the amount that can be easily lost through diet alone (and much of it is the reduction in retained water).

I know that this will only be overcome with increased exercise - so the bike it getting it tonight!

11 May 2007

Weight Loss MANIFESTO - LISTEN UP!


Hello, is there anybody out there?


If you are reading this, it is more than likely that you have weight to lose, maybe loads, maybe a bit. Whatever it is, welcome one and all.

I probably should have written this twenty some-odd days ago when I started this blog but anyway, here it is the Weight Loss Guide according to me!

Since beginning my weight loss journey (is it me or does that sound slightly pretentious???) I have looked at lots of websites and blogs about weight loss. Most are either boring lists of calorie intakes and reps at the gym (yawn) or blatant attempts to flog you some old diet related 'tat' that you are not interested in.!

Well I hope this blog is neither! I will always try and make it informative, humorous and there will definitely......................... NEVER BE ANY ADVERTS!

So, this then is my weight loss philosophy :-



1) Personal responsibility

The first thing I had to overcome was my notion that I wasn't really THAT fat and anyway it's not really my fault - those nasty, nasty fast food companies and supermarkets have made me like this! Really!

WRONG. Nobody made me get fat. I made myself fat through eating too many high fat foods. It really is as simple as that.


The sooner we accept that nobody has force fed us (unless you have a really unpleasant partner or you're on hunger strike in jail, but if you were on hunger strike you would be thin so you wouldn't be reading this....) well anyway, you get the idea!

Simply put, the quicker you accept responsibility for your situation, the quicker you will be able to start to lose the weight you want to lose.

2) Understand why you are fat

We are all fat for different reasons, there are many factors that cause us to gain weight. The most obvious and definitely the most prevalent is simply eating too much and exercising too little. This is clearly not always the case as hormonal, psychological and genetic factors can sometimes affect our weight and these factors must be explored to fully understand how you have got where you are.

You should always seek medical advise before going on a diet.

I used a great book by Dr Ali to understand the reasons for my excess weight. We are not related before you ask!


If there are underlying psychological reasons that you are fat, these problems MUST be addressed before you start to successfully lose weight. You cannot underestimate the power of positive thought to over come obstacles that appear in your way. Simply, if you eat because you are bored, get a hobby! If you eat because you are lonely or depressed, go places where you can easily make friends! Seek the help of colleagues, friends and family to motivate and encourage you through this effort.

Remember - this journey may well be the most important thing you ever do in your life and it is not going to easy. Huge sacrifices will need to be made consistently if you really want to succeed.

3) Diets

Losing weight is really not rocket science. Like anything worth getting it takes time and effort. You do not need expensive 'advice', diet plans and supplements. For the vast majority of us, eat well and exercise and your weight will decline. For some it is as not as simple as this but the principle is the same - get advice, do the basics and the some weight will come off. 'I've tried everything and I can't lose weight' really doesn't cut it...

4) Surgery

If you choose Bariatric surgery, be my guest but I believe if you can walk, you can lose weight (see personal responsibility). This MUST be a last resort.

5) Relationship with Food

Your relationship with food is key to success or failure. Try to understand why you eat and what it is doing to you. Look at everything you eat clearly and judge whether you really need it. Train yourself to abstain from food when you are not hungry. Simply put, if you think it is a positive thing to eat the food you are looking at, eat it, if it isn't don't! It is as basic as that.

6) Weight monitoring

I weigh myself every morning of every day ALWAYS! I keep a spreadsheet of my weight with a trend line. The trend line is very important as this will stop you obsessing about daily fluctuations up and down but remember that weighing yourself daily will allow you quickly identify a slide and take corrective action before it becomes an avalanche! Have the courage to weigh yourself everyday and deal with it rationally.

6) Motivation

I weighed 270 pounds when I decided enough was enough. My motivation is totally driven and inspired by the sight of my 3 year old son standing at my grave when he is 13! This WILL NOT happen - I will do everything in my power to ensure I get fit and healthy to see him well into adulthood. This is the only motivation I need.

You can use anything as motivation, a target event (Marriage etc), a physical pursuit (jet skiing down the Limpopo...) or whatever. I needs to be something attainable and very real and important to you. This will help you stay true to your desire to lose the weight.

Whatever you do DO NOT reward yourself with 'goodies' when you have lost weight. You must change your relationship with food and break the food as reward cycle - this is totally destructive. Food is fuel, nothing more. It can be pretty, tasty and very enjoyable fuel, but ultimately it is still jus fuel. Treat it as such and you won't go wrong.


7) Keeping at the weight you want to be

This really is the journey without end. Once you have successfully overcome all the barriers to weight loss and got to your dream weight, what then? It's simple. Keep doing what you did to lose the weight but do it for the rest of your life! This is a life change of the most profound kind and will only succeed long term if you continue it forever. Scary I know, but that's the truth. Can you still have a blow out at Christmas? YES, but your life HAS changed and this new way of living must be maintained to ensure continued success.

This is working for me NOW! It can work for you.

Good luck with your weight loss and keep checking back here for updates on my journey and further inspiration!

First signs of plateau?

Weight - 256 Lbs.

Exercise - I jumped to a conclusion yesterday, does that count?

I really don't have any right to be disappointed this morning as my weight is fairly stable and I am eating very healthily but I have got into the habit of expecting a substantial daily downward trend. I know it's only a 0.4 pound loss so I need to get a grip really...

I had stir fried veg for lunch and dinner yesterday - this in hindsight was a big mistake and I can't afford to get onto the slippery lard slope (even though it is officially good for you - see left)! It's just that steamed veg is SO boring (especially when I am trying not to use salt) and stir frying makes everything feel a lot more interesting in your mouth so to speak. ...

As for exercise, I don't even want to talk about that....I have convinced myself that I have man flu and that is as good a reason as any to let the cobwebs gather on the Carl Lewis torture machine. Once I am out if medical danger, I will do my best to get back on....Grrrr.

Anyway, onward.

10 May 2007

GOALS....!

WEIGHT LOSS GOALS 2007

#1 Lose 1 Stone (14 Pounds) & weigh 256 lbs DONE 16/05/07!

#2 Lose 10% of starting body weight (27 Lbs) & weigh 243 lbs DONE 17/07/07!

#3 Lose 46lbs & weigh 224lbs (16 stone)

#4 Lose 20% of staring body weight (54lbs) & weigh 216lbs

#5 Lose 70 pounds & weigh 200lbs by 31st December 2007.

#6 Maintain weight between 179-189 FOR EVER (at least until I get re-incarnated...!)

GOAL #1 - SORTED!

Weight - 255.6 Lbs

Exercise - watched pirates of the Caribbean 2 on DVD instead....bad boy.

Praise be, the stone is gone! Total weight loss to date is 14.4 Pounds. The monkey is off my back!


Time to celebrate with a glass of lime and honey water and some fruit (?)... get in there!
Next target is 10% body weight loss - 27 pounds (2 stone-ish) - so I am halfway there.

I think it's a good idea to break the whole thing down into small targets to keep the momentum up. I will be doing this over the next day or so and also about time we had some 'before and after' pictures (arrrrgh, the whale has escaped!!!).

I'll warn you before I post them (wouldn't want to upset any ones dinner)!


9 May 2007

Day 22 - Here endeth the Fast!

Weight - 256.4 Lbs (Total loss 13.6 Lbs).
Exercise - chewing a lot of lentils (that was knackering trust me!)

So the fast is over and I didn't quite manage the full stone in weight loss but nevertheless I feel confident that I can fast in future without side effects.

I will be mostly eating fish, salad and steamed veg for the rest of this week and next week introducing eggs and chicken (I'll try to keep off the red meat for longer if I can). And no wine!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

More worryingly is that I have to start using the exercise bike....double bugger!

8 May 2007

The science of dieting.. AT LAST

I have just come across this article - and for the first time, someone has simply explained what you need to do to lose weight. This is proper 'in a nutshell' time people.

This is an extract...

Dietitians recommend trying to lose 1-2 lb (0.5-1 kg) per week – something which requires a change in energy balance of about 1,000 kilocalories per day. Ideally, this should be done through a combination of eating less and taking more exercise.

Energy intake can be reduced by about 500-600 kilocalories and energy expenditure increased by about 400-500 kilocalories. Women and inactive men need about 2,000 kilocalories per day to stay the same weight, men and very active women about 2,500 kilocalories. So a reduction of about 500 kilocalories in food intake is far from starvation rations.

The first few days of a diet can be very encouraging, and people often find they can lose more than 1 kg in their first week. This is because early weight loss has more to do with reduced water and glucose stores (glycogen) than loss of fat.

Quite simply, reducing your food intake by 500 kilocalories gives you a bigger weight loss when you're using up glycogen than when you're using fat. When you're burning glycogen, you'll lose about 1kg for every 1,000 kilocalorie deficit you manage to achieve in energy balance.But you'll only start to break down fat once glycogen stores are depleted and, when you're burning fat, you'll need to achieve an energy deficit of 7,000 kilocalories for every 1kg you lose in weight.

So after that first week on the diet, your weight loss will probably fall back to the target of 1kg per week.


Read the full story here - thank you Jenny Bryan & Channel 4.

Going...going FAST!

Weight - 257.2 Lbs
Exercise - got out of breath weighing up a situation...

Well - final day of the fast and another 2 pounds gone. Still feel great and drinking Lime and Honey water like it's truly going out of fashion....


Fruit for breakfast, salad and veg for lunch and rice and lentils for tea. Better warn the coastguard - IT'S COMING!!!!

So far I have averaged a 2 pound loss per day through this 3 day fast so I am looking at a 6 pound loss overall. I am obviously quite happy with this and see this as an ongoing part of the diet for the rest of the year. I plan to do veg and honey/lime water once a week and the full fast once a month.

Warning - fasting isn't for everybody and can have side effects. Don't blame me if you try it - speak to a Doctor if you want info and advice.

Once the fast is over it is important to not overdo it with protein etc, so tomorrow I will be reintroducing protein into my diet in this order : Fish, Eggs, Chicken and finally Red Meat. This will be eaten with salads and/or fresh steamed vegetables.

Now that I have done all this hard work I will be keeping it up by eating low fat and moderate carbs with lots of fluid during the day. Portion control is key to the future and I will be having roughly half the protein I would normally consider appropriate (no more lardy stakes etc).

I am on track for stage one which is to loose a stone in a month. My next target is 240 Pounds by 1st July. I know at the moment I am not exercising anywhere near enough but I am happy to keep losing the weight - if it slows down or plateaus, I will need to up the exercise drastically..

7 May 2007

The FAST continues....


Weight - 259.2 Lbs (over 10 pounds lost since Day 1!)


Wow, big weight loss today (makes it feel worth it).


Breakfast this morning was a bowl of fruit (Apple, Pear, Banana and Grapes). Given the fact that I have not eaten solids for well over 24hrs, it was surprising disappointing. I didn't enjoy the preparation or eating of it particularly. Weird....


I felt slightly nauseous afterwards and felt generally done -in (this is probably the energy being expended to digest it.


Anyway, I'll keep pushing on despite the low energy levels (I definitely don't recommend this if you have an active lifestyle).


Laters.

6 May 2007

Life in the FAST lane - Day #1 Update



As day one of the fast draws to the close, other than stinking of Cinnamon and cloves, I feel fine. The hunger pangs came mid-morning and late evening. Each time I meet this crisis with a glass of my new most favourite drink (honey and lime water) and they subsided. The fasting tea is less palatable (I'll try it hot tomorrow and see if that perks it up).

Watching my wife eat a huge plate of trout and fresh veg was surprisingly easy... until she told me she was full and couldn't eat the rest (how VERY dare she!).

Anyway dear reader, only a few hours to go until breakfast (only now do I truly understand what it means to break the fast). I don't think I have ever needed a banana more than this (Ooh Matron!).

So in summary, no lightheadedness, no headaches to speak of and the hunger pangs have been controllable. In fact no visible side effects - so here's a picture of me to just show you how good I'm feeling.....

The tail of the tape tomorrow AM to see how many pounds I have shed...stay tuned.

LET THE FAST BEGIN!

Weight - 261.8 Lbs
Exercise - bikes are for wimps YOU KNOWS IT!

So the fast has begun.

Breakfast was a glass of lime and honey water (quite pleasant surprisingly...). I am still determined to do this despite my wife obsessing about tea and toast the moment she woke up (helpful). She decided yesterday that she would be doing the fast with me and bottled out at DAY 1 at 9am saying she was light headed!!!



I managed a 2 pound weight loss since yesterday - not quite sure how though.. a good springboard for the fast nevertheless.

I will update as the day progresses. Only lime water and herbal teas all day - get in there!

4 May 2007

Celebrate good times COME ON!

I have just realised that I have lost 1 whole BMI point! Only 9 more to go....


To commemorate this auspicious day, I have pushed the boat out and revamped the header to make it look a little more prufeshnial.. hope you like...


Anyway tomorrow I will be preparing for my 3 day fast. Lime and honey to buy etc.


Kirk out.

Junk Food & tree hugging MORONS!

Just found this - made me chuckle..

It is a fairly weird website that seems to have a BIG problem with McDonald's giving away children sized Hummers in their happy meals.

DUH hello! The LARD-enabled artery shagging rubbish they are selling is the problem.....is it not?

Look, I'm asthmatic and I'm all for reducing pollution blah d'blah but really.. stopping kids having a toy car - is this the biggest problem in the world today?????????

Talk about missing the point!! Anyway, didn't stop me having a go...


So, if you can do better, give it a go! I know, not very Buddhist...I've had a drink though ALRIGHT!

Day 17 - 3 day fast. Come on!

Weight - 262.4 Lbs
Exercise - I ran a bath (does that count?)

As promised, I am going to embark on a 3 day fast beginning on Sunday and continuing through Monday and Tuesday.

A tasty snack!!!


I will be following the good doctors prescription as shown in his book Dr Ali's Weight Loss Plan.

The fast is as follows :-

Day 1.

Intake

1 large jug of Lime and Honey Water (to be consumed by the glass every 90 mins all day).
3-4 cups of Fasting tea during the day.
As much water as you want (ooh that's a relief....it was starting to sound boring!)

Take showers in the morning and evening, carry out retention breathing (see below*) and have a head and neck massage if required.

Day 2

Intake

1 large jug of Lime and Honey Water (to be consumed by the glass every 90 mins all day).
Breakfast - Bananas, apples, grapes, pears and melon plus fasting tea to drink.
Lunch - a large bowl of non citrus fruits.
Dinner - a plate of steamed vegetables and a bowl of salad.

Same showering, breathing and massage routine as day 1.

Day 3

Intake

Breakfast - Bowl of non-citrus fruits, cottage cheese with honey, 10 almonds (peeled and soaked for 24 hours before), and fasting tea to drink.
Lunch - plate of salad with olive oil and lemon dressing. Plate of steamed vegetables.
Dinner - Khichri rice with a little live yogurt and steamed vegetables.

Same showering, breathing and massage routine as day 1.

Following the fast, I will slowly introduce fish, eggs, chicken and meat gradually in this order over the following week.

More about fasting, including its religious and political connotations can be seen here.

Tomorrow is preparation day!

* Retention breathing involves breathing in for 3 seconds, holding your breath for 6 seconds and breathing out SLOWLY over a further 6 seconds.

3 May 2007

Day 16 - Still chipping away (ooooh chips mmmm..)

Weight - 263.2 Lbs
Exercise - nothing due to back and neck ache (honest!)

Didn't eat much yesterday - feeling a bit shot to bits as a consequnece. I have been thinking more about the fasting and think this is the way to go. I am going to start with a 3 day fast starting on Sunday and will see how it goes. If all is OK and I don't end up in A&E, I may try it every month or so....


I will be following the guidelines in Dr Alis book. When I get a minute I will post the fasting schedule and the stuff I will be mostly consuming. It is made up of herbal teas etc with a slow introduction of fruit/steamed vegetables and such like. Sounds great...

I am hoping this will kick start the weight loss a bit more and give me the motivation to carry on.

I'LL KEEP YOU 'POSTED'.

2 May 2007

Day 14-15 Going round in circles


Weight - 264.2 Lbs


Exercise - 10 or so minutes Monday night on the bike of terror.

I am really struggling with the exercise side of this - I realise I need to get some more of the weight off before I can really go for the exercising in a big way. I might give drowning (er.. I mean swimming...) a go as well! Nothing like getting your man boobs out in public to build your self esteem!

I am a great believer in Dr Ali (see posts passim) - he is rather quaintly called 'an integrated health expert' - whilst I am not entirely sure what this amounts to, I have read his book and think he makes a lot of sense.

His premise is that we are different and importantly, we get fat for different reasons. I appear to be fat because I eat more than I exercise . By the way, isn't eating a form of exercise? Not very efficient I will grant you, but more exercise than throwing yourself off a cliff...).

Anyway back to the plot..

Dr Ali espouses a combination of Diet (including fasting), yoga and massage.

So far I have tackled the diet, I have removed high fat, salt (nearly - I KNOW) , bread and potatoes. So the next stage for me is fasting (more of that later on).

As for the rest of it, I definitely like the sound of massage ( easy tiger!) - I mean the non-fruity neck and shoulder tension reduction type - strictly no extras required! The Doc puts a great deal of emphasis on the ability of the neck particularly to influence well being and weight loss. I will let you know how I get on.

So far, I am torturing myself with tedious food all for the measly reduction of around 6 lbs - it has GOT to get better than this.

More later - me neck is KILLING me!