A Fat Man's Journey (Working my way back…)

An Attempt to Journey from Fat to Fit in a Lifetime. Eat right, Eat less, Move more

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Another Day, Another Effort.

Back to the Walking

When I started the Journey back in 2011 the first bit of exercise I did was to walk the track at the local high school. Today I did just that. Unlike my first walk, where I struggled to walk one mile, today I walked three miles at a brisk 15-minute mile pace.

Felt good.

With the walking and some hiking, and time on the trainer with the bike, I plan to keep the fitness level up this winter as I continue to shed weight.

Lunch with a Friend from long ago…

Today I went to breakfast with my younger son. It is a Saturday morning tradition for us. The younger fellow and I go to a local landmark diner for breakfast, conversation, some laughs, mostly for time together.

grange-rougeFour hours later I was back at the same place with Missus. We had lunch with a friend of mine from high school. JKS and I were friendly in high school. Not close but always a warm welcome and a how are ya. We had choir together for three years and one summer during our college years we worked at the same plastics plant in the neighboring town. My nickname for her was Twiggy, after the 1960’s supermodel. It always elicited a roll of the eyes…

In any case, we had not seen each other since that long ago summer at the plastics plant and recently reconnected due to Facebook.

Today we met for lunch. Missus and Me and JKS and her husband SS.

I hope they had as good a time as Missus and I did. Good conversation, good food, good company.

I had a Greek Salad.   Very tasty. Very in line with how I like to eat.

Eating out has always been a challenge. Servings are large and it is difficult to estimate how many calories are involved…. I think I did well by eating the salad. The veggie burger and fries was tempting…..

Writing even when I am not sure I have anything to say….

I am committed to writing every day when ever possible to do so. I will write even when I have nothing much to say because I need the discipline that comes with the writing. Bear with me.

As when I first started this blog, there will be days of triumph and days of disappointment and I will write when I am manic and when I am depressed… The point is to write, the chronicle, to keep the light on.


  • Back to 210 in late spring, early summer
  • 3000 miles on the bike in 2017
  • My first century ride
  • Raise $5,000 for the Ride for Autism
  • Ride the Century in the Light House ride in Maine
  • Run a 10K (Yes, run. Me. Run)

The first one is the tough one.


I hope you will keep reading and commenting….

It helps




The Black Dog Won

Not the Weekend I Wanted

This was the weekend of the Five-Boro Bike Tour.

I look forward to this ride for one reason: Riding with my friend NI.

The rest of it is OK.  Thirty-two thousand riders make for quite the spectacle.

The ride was Sunday.  I had a good time on Saturday.  I met up with NI and a friend of his and we traipsed around the city, had a good lunch, did the registration thing…

It was Sunday that The Black Dog took his bite and I couldn’t, or didn’t, fight back.

I awoke at 4:00 AM, got ready for the ride, loaded up the car and drove in the New York City.  By 5:30, I was approaching the area where I would meet NI.  Then it happened.  The stress?  A stomach bug?  I am not sure.  I pulled over to the curb on a side street in lower Manhattan.  There and then, I lost what little breakfast I had.

I contemplated this.  Thought about what it was all about.  What caused this?  I turned around, went home and went to sleep.  I didn’t do the ride.

I never really felt any better yesterday.  I thought I would ride in the afternoon if I did but I didn’t  I didn’t feel much better and I didn’t ride.  Riding might have been the best thing for me.  Doing the tour might have been the best thing for me.

I simply couldn’t fight The Black Dog.

I sat on the sofa speaking to no one, doing nothing.  I wanted to climb into a hole and pull the earth back over me.

I don’t like when this happens (no kidding, right?) and I am not sure why it does.  I wish I could understand what is happening in my head a little better.

If I did understand it better, then maybe this would have been the weekend I wanted.


I am not living the life I imagined I would have when I was a teen and well in to my twenties and even my early thirties.

I didn’t expect to need two jobs.  I didn’t expect not to be able to afford a vacation once a year or to have the difficulties I have.  This is not what I expected at all.  I really don’t like my career.  I am good at it.  I just don’t like it.  I don’t have time to do the things I like.  I work seven days a week.  I take off a weekend and I feel guilty.  I am taking money out of the family pot and I am leaving the shop shorthanded.  I don’t get to do the activities I so enjoy: hiking, cycling, spending time with my family and friends.

It is the guilt that cripples me.  If I work all seven days, I feel guilty for taking time away from the family.  If I don’t work the weekend, I feel guilt over not making the money.

This is not a way to live.  This is a way to die.

At this time there is little I can do to change all this.  I have to keep pushing.  I am not sure where this pushing will get me but I have to.  There is no other choice.

So I deal with the guilt.

My weight

I am the heaviest I have been since the middle of the summer of 2012.  I am up to 217.  This is not a good thing.  I have no excuses.  I have given in to the depression and the stress and I have over-eaten.  I have not pushed past the depression to get on the bike.  I have walked.  HUGE amounts of walking.  I have set a course in the factory and I make sure I walk it throughout the day.  It is great for fitness.  I am fit.  But I have out-eaten the calories I am burning and that is no one’s fault or responsibility but my own.

217-pounds. Pants are getting a little snug.  T-shirts are getting a little tight.

I have to get back to what I know works and I need to stay there.  I have indulged.  Cookies.  Buffet.  Not what, who or where I want to be.

It will not stand.

Getting it back together

I will take some days off work in the next couple of weeks. Take a few vacation days.  I will get on my bike and ride.  I will get out and hike.  PGB is sometimes available mid-week.  Perhaps he will be able to join me for a hike in Harriman.

If I don’t get my mind cleared and my heart right I will surely end up either insane or fat.  Insane I can accept.  Fat I cannot.

I understand the expression “a life lived in quiet desperation” now.  I didn’t always.  I do now.

Things have to change.  I need to make them change.  I need to get my heart and mind back on the same page, focused on the same goals, the same life plan.

I cannot accept what I am doing to myself with food, with stress, with life in general.

Getting it back together is must happen.  It has to start happening now.

Is life a constant battle for everyone? So many people I see seem to have it together.  I sometimes feel I am a single step away from the abyss.  Stepping back from that fall is the hardest thing to do when the Black Dog seems to be standing behind me baring teeth and growling.

Cycling, and time with friends, has been my escape from The Black Dog.  This weekend I didn’t fight hard enough.  I let the Black Dog win.

I have to find a way to fight harder. Or maybe I just need to be smarter than The Black Dog…





The Healthy Choice

I started losing weight because I was tired of being fat, out of shape, ugly (in my eyes) and embarrassed. I started losing weight because I was afraid of dying early. I started losing weight because it was the right time in my life to change.

From the beginning I understood that it would be about more than taking off the pounds.

It would be about understanding me.

It would be about getting fit.

It would be about staying lean and fit and getting healthy and staying there.

I knew from day one of my Journey that I would have to travel the path physically as well as emotionally. I understood that there would be much more to this than merely eating less and eating right. Moving more, moving right would be a part of it as well. A big part.

It is very possible to lose 100-plus pounds and not significantly improve one’s health. It is very possible to do so and injure one’s health.

I didn’t want to simply lose the pounds. I wanted to roll back the clock if I could. I wanted to be younger. I felt so old on the day I started the Journey.

It is Mid-April now. 2014. I am still 100+ pounds down from my peak. Still where I want to be with my weight. Still building the fitness, riding the bike, walking.

I made a healthy choice. I never have followed a diet. No WW, Jenny, Atkins, South Beach…. I have never followed an exercise plan. I eat right. I eat less. I move more. I didn’t start a diet. I didn’t start and exercise plan.

I started a new lifestyle. I change my life and I made the healthy choice.

The Healthy Choice does not mean illness always leave you alone…

I am getting over the flu right now. It is part of why I haven’t posted on my blog in a while. It really knocked me on my back. It came on last Saturday. I was feeling a little off on my bike ride in to the shop. I started strong but faded badly as I approached the shop. I showered up and started work but by mid day my head felt “off” and I was feeling congested. I thought it must be allergies. It was busy at the shop and I was running about but losing energy with each step. At some point CB, one of the shop owners, asked me if I was OK. I think I was coming across as “cross”. I told her I thought I was dealing with allergies…

By night fall I was sick.

By the time I crawled into bed Saturday night I was running a fever of 101.1. Overnight the fever climbed and I was in hell by 3:00 AM when I sent a text to the bike shop boss that I would not be able to lead the Sunday ride nor would I be able to work. Sunday was hell. 103.4 fever. Joint aches. Violent shivering. Sweats.

Monday morning the Dr. confirmed it was the flu and ordered me to bed rest for the week. Anti-viral meds to fight the flu and antibiotics to prevent the secondary infections that often accompany the flu.

Here it is. Thursday. I am FINALLY starting to feel OK. The fever broke a couple of days ago but the joint aches and the general malaise that comes with the flu linger. Today is the best day so far.

The worst part for me was having to cancel the Father-Son vacation the Younger One and I had planned for this week. I was going to work Monday and Tuesday and then he and I would travel to New England Tuesday night to enjoy three days exploring.

I know it disappointed him but in classic form, he has handled it with grace and understanding.

I doubt I will be able to ride this weekend but I will keep the option open for Sunday. Monday I will return to my regular job healthy and strong. This was not how I wanted to get the rest I needed but at least I rested.



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A Day Off Work

I burned a “Personal” day today. Couldn’t be happier about it.

Truth be told, I should have taken much of the week after the concussion off but I worked. I shouldn’t have. The lack of resting led to some questionable decisions. For the most part they were harmless and I caught myself before they could affect my place of work or anyone working with me. One decision I was properly chastised for by one of my bosses. I was fine driving. Fact is I am better sitting down. I feel almost normal when seated and I know I am focused better.

It is while standing or walking…..

So today I took the day off. I slept later than normal (7:00 am ) and I went to the shop and had some training on a product line the shop carries. Some of it stuck I am sure.

Then I had lunch with Missus and the Older One.

Then I slept.

Three hours.

A deep and restful sleep. Wrapped in the covers, head deep in the pillows, dog at my feet. Sleep in all its glory and pleasure. Restful darkness. Time out for the brain.

I awoke around five PM and then I came down and we prepared dinner.

I feel so much better already.

Giving the brain time to rest.

I needed that.


I will never be a “true” vegetarian, not as long as I am unwilling to give up sushi and lox. I am however getting closer. I had some sushi today at lunch. Otherwise it was all vegetables. Dinner tonight was vegetarian. Not by design really. It just is happening that way. When selecting what we want for diner we are choosing meatless much more often than not.

I haven’t gone this direction because I am indignant over the killing of animals for food. I am not thrilled by that fact but it is not the motivation behind my change in eating habits.

I did this for my health.

I did this to lower my blood pressure, improve my cholesterol and such.

And it has worked.

It continues to work.

Tonight’s dinner is a good example of how we like to eat now.

IMG_1661I saw a recipe on-line for cauliflower coated in a yogurt sauce and roasted. Made that tonight. Delicious. We treated that as our main dish and the side dish was Navratan Korma, a dish of mixed vegetables made in a cashew sauce with pineapple. I didn’t make that. I microwaved it. We buy these dishes at the local Indian Market. I love them. All natural, no colors added, no preservatives and they are delicious. They are also silly inexpensive…

Served with some warmed Naan this all made for a very good dinner.

No, I don’t miss meat in my meals.

I do miss the taste. I have to say that. But I don’t want to eat it and I don’t feel any temptation to eat it.



1 tablespoon vegetable oil

2 heads cauliflower

1½ cups plain Greek yogurt

1 lime, zested and juiced

2 tablespoons chili powder

1 tablespoon cumin

1 tablespoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon curry powder

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1 teaspoon black pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 400° and lightly grease a small baking sheet with vegetable oil. Set aside.
  2. Trim the base of the cauliflower to remove any green leaves and the woody stem.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine the yogurt with the lime zest and juice, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, curry powder, salt and pepper.
  4. Dunk the cauliflower into the bowl and use a brush or your hands to smear the marinade evenly over its surface. (Excess marinade can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to three days and used with meat, fish or other veggies.)
  5. Place the cauliflower on the prepared baking sheet and roast until the surface is dry and lightly browned, 30 to 40 minutes. The marinade will make a crust on the surface of the cauliflower.
  6. Let the cauliflower cool for 10 minutes before cutting it into wedges and serving alongside a big Green Salad

Growing concerned about my Annual Birthday Ride

Since I started the Journey of mine I have made it my practice to ride at least 10 miles on or close to my early March birthday.

My birthday is about 14 days from now and the long-term forecast does not hold much hope for warming. Snow is forecast for this weekend. The weekend after is forecast (at this early date) to remain cold and wet. The weekend after my birthday….

Maybe I can rent a fat bike at the shop…..

fat bikes and Cross Country Skiing

fat bikes and Cross Country Skiing

More Sleep

I feel tired. My head is still hurting. I feel better than I did yesterday. Yesterday was better than the day before.

I really had minimized head concussions. Never could understand why a ball player would miss most of a season from a concussion.

I understand now.

Mine is not that bad. Well, I am not trying to do sports at a pro level and I am afraid to even think about riding outside even if the weather was not a factor.

So I will go to sleep early tonight. Get some rest. Sleep a good deep sleep.

Do yourself a favor.

When the Doctor tells you to rest, REST.




I Crashed HARD

In the words of my oldest brother, the one who played Rugby into his late forties despite being half the size and twice the age of the other players, “that good health stuff is going to kill you.”

I do try to stay active. Despite the snowy and cold winter to which we have been subjected, I have tried to keep moving. Not always have managed but I have tried.

I have not ridden a single foot outside on my bike this year. Too much snow, too narrow and icy roads….

I did, however, have an opportunity to get in some cross-country skiing.

The Monument in the distance from the Patio at the Lodge

The Monument in the distance from the Patio at the Lodge

High Point State Park is, as the name implies, the highest point in the state of New Jersey. A mere 1803 feet above sea-level, it does not impress people from New England and it is barely a foot hill to people from the west. It is ours and we love it. The state runs cross-country ski trails around the park when the snow fall will allow and this year the snow fall allows…

I asked the owner of the Bike shop if I could start and hour late on Sunday, he said yes and so early on Sunday morning I drove the 45 minutes from my home to High Point, paid my $18.00 for a trail pass (which is ridiculous…) and off I went.

I was the first person out on the trails! Fresh snow! I was having a blast! About 1 km from the lodge I had to cross an asphalt paved road. Now here is where we come to the part of the story where I say “I knew better” because I did. I do. I know and I knew better than to do what I did.

You see, though I have been cross-country skiing since 1990 (there was a ten-year period when I didn’t at all) I have never been “Good” at it. Truth be told I am pretty bad at it. I am clumsy, not at all smooth, never get in to that nice rhythm that “good” skiers get in to. I consider it a great day on the trails if I only fall 4 or 5 times. I know it will happen and so I have become quite good at falling. Despite this I really enjoy the skiing and I love the feel of the cold air and the special quiet of the woods after a snow fall.

So I came upon this asphalt paved road. Covered in snow. Sloping down across the level trail.

I knew better.

I knew I should take off my skis and walk across. It is exactly what I did when I skied the same trail last year.

I didn’t do that. I got stupid.

I tried to ski across the road.

If it had not been snow-covered I would have walked across because I would not have wanted to damage my skis on the road surface.

It was snow-covered.

I got stupid.

I tried to ski across.

Now to understand this you need to understand what I mentioned above. The trail was level. The road crossed it at 90 degrees and sloped down to the left.

If I had entered the road left ski first this probably would not have happened the way it did. I would have ended up sitting on my rump, questioning my sanity. I would have kicked the skis off, stood up, walked across the rest of the way and reminded myself to walk across on the way back. It would have been an amusing little story to tell on myself.

I entered right ski first.

There was ice under that snow.

The right ski slid left and before I could even think about the fact that I was falling I hit the road HARD. Damned HARD. Painfully hard.

I landed on my right side. My shoulder taking most of the impact. That drove my arm in to my ribs. My head snapped violently to the right and hit the road. I rolled on to my back and laid still for a moment, assessing the situation, hoping the stars would clear out of my eyes, trying to determine just how bad this fall was.

It was not good.

After a moment I figured out nothing was broken (as far as I could tell) and I could probably get up OK. I popped off the skis and I did get up just before the plow truck came through. Despite the ringing in my ears and the pain on my right side that started at my lower rib cage and continued unabated to the top of my right ear, I crossed the road and continued skiing. For about 200 yards. At that point the pain in my right side and the ringing in my head convinced me I should start back towards the lodge.

Here is the kicker: I was still having fun. I was hurting. I was hurting a great deal but I was enjoying being outside, skiing and feeling the cold and that special quiet after a new snow.

At some Point I noticed that I had broken my left ski pole and I was having trouble controlling the left ski due to problem with the binding. I actually skied past the lodge and went up a side trail when I finally gave in to the broken equipment and the aching body and I went home.

I showered and dressed and I drove to the bike shop to work, arriving on time for work despite it all.

All day long it sounded like I had my head in a bucket. I felt light-headed and I needed to sit down often. My neck was now tightening up and I was exhausted.

I went to work on Monday and after not sleeping well Sunday night I was really feeling it all over. I couldn’t turn my neck to the right, my shoulder wouldn’t let me lift my arm over my head and my head was still not feeling right.

Missus made an appointment with the Doctor for me and after the usual tests and such he declared that I had suffered a head concussion. He sent me for x-rays on my neck and told me to get a few days of bed rest and be prepared to not feel right for a week to ten days, go to the emergency room if I start to vomit or lose consciousness….



I rested all day yesterday. Really had no choice. I would not have been good behind the wheel of a car. I went to work today but came home early. Too light-headed and out of balance when I was standing. It is the tiredness that really bothers me. And the Nausea. Well Ok, most everything about this bothers me: neck pain, rib pain, arm pain, headache, dizziness… Crashing is not fun at all.

I have to work tomorrow and Friday. I am conducting the monthly safety training. The Topic is “Slips, Trips and Falls”. I couldn’t make this up.

I wish I could say I have learned some sort of lesson beyond “don’t try to cross a road on your skis”. I haven’t. At least none that comes to mind right now. I am only disappointed that I won’t be able to get out and ski again next weekend.

Maybe the lesson is to listen to the owner of the bike shop and take up snow shoeing.

The Journey and a Detour

I wish I could report that my weight has held steady and I have been keeping my eating in check as this cold winter has moved along. I can’t. I am over 215 pounds right now. I am not happy with myself at all. I can think of many excuses for this slip but they are just that, excuses. The simple fact is I have slipped. I have been eating more than I have been burning. I have been finding reasons to eat more than I have been and I am paying the price with a climb in my weight.

Today I got back to the plan: Light breakfast, light lunch, light afternoon snack (an orange today) and a good dinner. Later I will have a simple light snack of a slice of bread and a slice of cheese. This is what got me to 200 pounds. This is what will get me back there.

I will write daily again. Even if I think I have nothing to say. That focus of reporting on the Journey helped me get there. I slipped away from it and I have paid the price.

I suppose we all have slips and trips and falls.

The real problem isn’t that you slipped or tripped or fell on your Journey. The real problem is failing to get back up.

I am getting back up.



I Needed a Break

Hi, remember me?

I haven’t posted in 12 days.

I needed a break.

From everything.

I couldn’t do that so I took an unannounced break from writing the blog. I hope I didn’t disappoint anyone or lose to many followers.

I have to admit I am a bit worn down.

Work, work, family, stress….

Just tired.

So I put the blog aside for a couple of weeks and now I am feeling a little more energetic and ready to write again.

I really enjoy writing this blog but I wonder sometimes if I actually have anything to say.

Well, I will keep writing anyway. I write for me. I have always liked to sound of my voice….

Something I wrote

I wrote this a couple of months ago. A little poem in shadows and dreams:



It was the breeze, the rustle of leaves. A hint of winter in the air, hiding under the warmth of the late Autumn sun. Low angled light passing through trees, long shadows along the path, the quiet crunch of steps on the dry leaves.

It was the view, the far off mountains. A hint of color left on distant trees, the river below framed by the bridge, the sound of the train heading north. A distant horn, a hawk circling above. It was the winding path through open fields and dense woods.

It was the whisper, the murmur of a soft voice. A hint of laughter in the voice. A soft giggle and a shy look. It was soft hair hanging in bangs across the eyes and a slight blush. It was a soft touch, lightly with gentle finger tips.

It was the kiss, lips lightly touching, softly brushing. A hint of quivering in the touch. A deep breath and a stiffened back, and arms held at length. It was a moment, sweet and passing, eyes meeting eyes and tears met with tears.

It was the coffee, warming cold hands, giving cover for the quiet. A hint of confusion, small talk, hesitant words. It was promises made and meant to be kept. Sad goodbyes, warmth inside and plans to meet again.


We have been dealing with a nasty winter here. Cold. Snow. When it isn’t cold it rains. When it is cold it snows. Riding my bike has not been an option. Walking has been difficult. I have been riding the bike on the rollers and the trainer but it isn’t the same and when I get home at night in the cold and dark I just have little motivation.

I look forward to the weekends but the weather has been awful.

Maybe next weekend…. Forecast is for mid thirties. We can but hope.

The winter I started this Journey the weather was good. Very little snow. Warmer than normal temperatures most days. I was able to get out and walk most days. I wonder if I had started this Journey during a winter like this one if I would have had the success I have enjoyed.

I wish I could at least get out and cross-country ski but my schedule just does not allow it. This past weekend I was down with a cold so nothing was happening for me. Love cross-country skiing. I am really bad at it. I love it anyway.

Remembering Mom

Surrounded by family... Mom in her glory

Surrounded by family… Mom in her glory

This past Thursday was my Mother’s 75th birthday. Well, it would have been. Mom has been gone more than 20 years. She was 54 years old when cancer took her from us. I am still shocked. She was a force of nature. Tall, attractive, strong, brassy, loving, hard, compassionate, tender, quick to anger, quick to love. She could have dominated a convention at Madison Square Garden. People were drawn to her. She was drawn to people.

Each of her four children can remember tough times with Mom. She was demanding. She was unforgiving. She formed opinions and it could be nearly impossible to move her.

Each of her four children can also remember wonderful times with Mom. Moments when her softer side would pour out to us. Moments of deep compassion and love.

Mom was capable of incredible love and kindness. She was the friend who would never leave your side when you needed a friend most.

I remember when Mom became friends with June. My folks had joined a community club and had met a husband and wife. June and my mother hit it off right away. What Mom didn’t know when she met June was that June had cancer. As June became more and more ill my mother became the friend who sat with her late in to the evening, reading to her, mopping her brow, feeding her ice chips. June’s other friends had run. Seeing a friend dying is hard and they couldn’t take it. Mom took it. She didn’t have to. She was the new friend. No one would have thought anything about it if Mom had simply drifted away. That wasn’t Mom. She was never one to drift away. Mom was with June as she began to fade the last time. Her husband, her daughter and son sat at her side and as Mom quietly left the room they called her back in and asked her to stay with them, asked her to share the last moments with their wife and mother.

Mom was slow to get over the loss of June, Just as she had been slow to get over the loss of other friends for whom she had been there. Mom knew she would be hurt. She also knew that her friend needed someone and that she had the strength to be that someone.

When Mom was diagnosed with cancer I cried like a young child. I thought she would win. Mom always won. I was scared for her, for me, for the family and so I cried but I thought she would win. Even when I came to understand that it was a cancer no one beats. I thought Mom would be the one.

I was thirty-one but I had the hope of a child.

When Mom lost the fight eleven months later I sat in my car and I wailed. It was a sound I didn’t know could come from me. Pure grief expressed.

Twenty and a half years later I am still in pain. I still miss my Mom. I am the most like her of her four children I think. I am quick to temper, quick to love. I take things to heart, I am the friend who will be there when you dearly need a friend.

I express love the same way my Mom did. I cook for you. I visit you, I invite you in to my home. I share my life with you. That was Mom.

I tell my children about her. Danny knew her but he doesn’t remember her. He was only two when she left us. We named Kyle for her. His Hebrew name, Chaim, is the masculine form of my mother’s Hebrew name, Chaia. The name means Life. Somehow fitting for a woman who had four children. Even more fitting given her inner force.

I miss Mom. I always will.



Considering it all.

The Blog Turns Two

I have been writing this blog just a few days more than two years now. I have written about the pain, the confusion, the joy, the fear, the conquests, the failure, and the pleasures of this Journey.

I am so glad that I have done so. I the two years of writing this blog I have “met” so many wonderful people who have shared with me their Journey, who have encouraged me and consoled me.

I don’t write as often now. There is less to write about. I am in maintenance mode now. No longer fighting to take the weight off. The weight is gone. Now I fight to keep it off. I am holding steady in the fight. I have good weeks and bad (this past week was not so good) and the weight swing a few pounds up and a few pounds down. I am 209.6 as I write this today. I lost my streak of days under 210 when I hit 211 and then climbed all the way to 215 a week ago. Fighting the good fight, it is coming back down. I got careless around the holidays, went out to lunch and dinner a few times more than was prudent.

I could blame the weather. It has been nasty cold here and walking has been hard, riding has been (for me) impossible. Blaming the weather is the easy way out and it is also inaccurate. It still comes down to calories in versus calories out. I had to many come in for the amount that was going out.

Fixed that.

Back on Plan

Stay focused.

Fat is something I will not allow myself to be.

Thank you for reading this blog the last two years. I hope the blog will be worthy of your continued attention.

Dinner with Friends

On 7 January I went to dinner with “the guys”. PB, MT, TM, ND, SA and me. Italian restaurant. The same one where I eat my once a year pizza. I had a stuffed eggplant appetizer as my main dish and a vegetable soup.

Very good.

No dessert. Just coffee.

Good conversation.

I was quieter than usual I think. I listened much more than I spoke.

I was thinking about how difficult it is for us to all get together. We are busy with work and families. ND moved to Taiwan. Where once there were nine of us there are now six.

I was thinking about the friends who were not there. Joe was the first to leave us. We were closest of friends at the time he died. I am still trying to move on from losing him though it has been four and a half years. Wally was my closest friend for many years. He was the next to leave the party too soon. He left us less than a year after Joe. Then Chris left. Just this past year. I am still resisting the urge to pick up the phone and call him when we plan these dinners.

So I was quieter than usual for me. I listened to my friends and I interjected a bit here and there.

I really was just trying to absorb the evening.

Something I care about

Twenty-two and a half years ago my older son was born. First born child to Missus and me. A Boy!! Cute. All the right parts in all the tight places.

Big Ears

Danny and Daddy.  Danny is about 2 months old

Danny and Daddy. Danny is about 2 months old

Blue eyes

Lusty cry


He was six months old when we first really became concerned but it was earlier that we sensed something wasn’t quite right.

He cried and screamed violently if Mommy wasn’t near. And he would cry that way for hours until Mommy was back. Friends who had so enthusiastically offered to baby sit now begged off because no one can really handle a baby who cries like that.

He didn’t sit up. He didn’t engage with toys. He became animated only when Mommy and Daddy were with him.

Eventually there would be a diagnoses though it took a long time to come.

Fragile X Syndrome.

From the moment of conception our sweet little boy was destined to have significant mental delay and behaviors in the Autistic Spectrum.

Danny about 9 years old.  He still has a wonderful smile

Danny about 9 years old. He still has a wonderful smile

For 22 and half years we have raised and loved this child. We have lost friends who didn’t understand. We have become estranged from family who wouldn’t understand. And we love our son. We often feel isolated. We often feel alone. Though we have loving friends and family who are wonderful with Danny and patient with the difficulties we face, it is not always easy. It is rarely easy.

In 2012 I saw a poster or flier or something that directed me to the Ride For Autism. I really no longer remember how I found out about the ride. My friends KG and NI agreed to ride it with me and as I had just started the Journey it became my focal point for my training.

I did the 50-mile ride. I struggled. But I finished and in so doing I formed a bond with this ride. It is now my most important ride each year.

It seems fitting (to me anyway) that the ride is June 7 this year. Danny’s 23rd birthday.

My inspiration, my light, my love. Danny

My inspiration, my light, my love. Danny

This year I am aiming to do the 100 mile distance. A Century in cyclist speak.  There are shorter distances and anyone can pick any distance.

The notion of doing it 2 years ago was laughable. I know I can do it this year. Build the base miles. Work on the weight and the fitness and the endurance. Do the ride.

There is no fund-raising required for this ride, just the entrance fee. Last year I thought I would try to raise additional funds and I asked people for donations. To my amazement, $1450.00 was donated by my friends and families and by some of the readers of this blog. I am profoundly and eternally grateful.

This year I am doing the ride again. I have put together “Danny’s Team”. So far there is one other rider  who has signed up as a member of Danny’s Team and there are several others who have told me they will.

I hope we put together 10 or so riders and that each of the riders is able to raise a few dollars from friends and family and that we, as a team, can raise $5000.00.

The purpose of the ride

  • To raise funds to be distributed to other tax exempt organizations that serve individuals with autism and their families
  • To raise awareness about autism in the community
  • To provide and opportunity for individuals with autism and their families to engage is recreation and socialization.

Seems like a good thing to me.

So here are the links if you are interested in knowing more. If you cycle and you are in the area I hope you will consider doing the ride and if you do I hope you will consider doing it as part of Danny’s Team

Ride For Autism

Danny’s Team Page

Danny’s Team Facebook Page

If you don’t cycle and you care to contribute I can only offer you my heartfelt gratitude and the assurance that the money is going to a worthy cause.

If you don’t wish to contribute or can’t, I understand and I  thank you for your friendship on this blog.  The friendship has encouraged me and inspired me and that has allowed me to get to this point in my Journey.