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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Family, Overindulgence, and a Ride with a Friend


Memorial Day Weekend with Family

Friday night was a visit to hell.

We drove from New Jersey to Virginia on the Friday night of a long weekend. Had to be done. No other option. It was hell.

The drive from Jersey to my brother’s home in Virginia is a five-hour affair on most occasions. For the annual Memorial Day weekend visit we typically leave at silly o’clock on Saturday morning, pull up to the hotel at 11:00 or so, rest up and then go to my brother’s home around 1:30 to visit a little before the festivities start at 2:00.

That would be normal.

This year was not normal.

This year we had a naming ceremony for the first member of the next generation, my nephew’s daughter, a two-month old bundle of love. This required arriving Friday night for the early Saturday service.

Six and a half hours of heavy traffic, much of it stop-and-go.

The Older Son does not deal well with this. I don’t deal well with this.

We survived.

Grand-Aunt Missus with Grandniece

Grand-Aunt Missus with Grandniece

The festivities on Saturday, both the naming ceremony and the cookout, were smashing successes. Visiting with my niece and my nephews, seeing my brother and his wife and all the friends I only see at the annual cookout, and meeting my Grand-Niece, all added up to pure joy.

The weekend was too short. I would have liked to stay longer on Sunday but obligations drew us home. We had to be back in time to pick up the dogs from the kennel. Other responsibilities had to be met.

But it was a joy.

Overindulgence

I thought about it carefully. Then I decided to allow it. I overindulged on Saturday. After a light breakfast, I allowed myself to eat and enjoy the foods at the cookout. Well, not all the foods. The stars of the menu are all red meat related. Ribs, Skirt Steak, Beef Chili, Burgers, Hot Dogs…

I brought a vat of Vegan Chili. It was very well received and went quickly. There were also homemade black bean veggie burgers made by AH, the partner of my Nephew G. They were delicious. And I had fruit, salads, brownies….

Oh yes, rum chocolate bon-bons…. OH MY they were good.

So I went way overboard.

And it is OK.

This morning I was actually down one pound from Friday.

Still heavier than I want to be and I am back on the plan and I am working it off.

But for one day…

It was OK.

A Ride with a Friend

I met ES when he and his wife AS started showing up last spring for the Sunday Shop Rides. A really nice couple. Pleasant to talk with, great to ride with. Bright, Enthusiastic and engaged in the rides.

Everything a Ride Leader could want from riders.

When they didn’t show up for the ride one summer Sunday I assumed that their children were home from camp and that was that.

It was more than that. ES had been involved in a bad bike crash. It took a great deal of focus and effort, I am sure, but he returned to cycling and it was my joy to be involved in helping him select his new bike.

ES and AS have rejoined the Sunday rides and it is once again a pleasure to ride with them. I didn’t lead the ride yesterday because I was heading back north from the family visit.

Riding Country Roads in New Jersey

Riding Country Roads in New Jersey

I had planned to do a 60 mile ride with the bike club in The Hudson Valley but I just could bear the thought of a 120-mile round trip in the car.

I was really pleased when ES told me he was available for a ride today.

So we met a the bike shop (a good midway point between our homes) and set out on what we originally planned as a 48 mile ride. Memorial Day Parades changed that to a 42.5-mile ride… It was Great.

I can’t speak for ES but for me… It was GREAT. We rode at a relaxed pace, took one long break and a couple of short breaks and chatted much of the ride when we could ride side by side. It was a ride with two personalities. The first half of the ride had nearly 2000 feet of climbing. The second half was flat to downhill…

I knew I would enjoy selling bikes.  I knew I would enjoy leading the Shop Rides.  I didn’t know that I would develop friendships with “customers”

Fun time. ES and I are well matched in our riding abilities. ES is MUCH better on the hills than I am but I am able to ride the rolling hills and the flat areas with him and he is patient about the long climbs.

I am working hard to be ready for the Ride for Autism. A ride like this is good prep….

Thanks ES.

My Attention

I have not been tending to this blog much recently. My efforts have been directed towards WORK and the Ride for Autism.

This ride is very important to me. Raising funds, getting people to join the team… So far the Team has raised $2,600.00. A wonderful thing. Wonderful and generous people have donated whatever they could and I appreciate it more than words can express.

It will be a fun ride. Some are doing the Century. Some are riding shorter distances. It is all good. The important thing is to show up. To engage. To make the effort. I appreciate it all.

So that is where my attention has been. Diverted from this important part of my life to another.

Today I rode 42+ miles. I am preparing to ride 100 in June 7th. I am doing this because The Older One cannot. I am doing this because I want other parents to have the resources available to them that were not available to us 20+ years ago.

To all who are supporting the team or have joined the team I offer you my deepest thanks.

Today’s Ride was beautiful.

June 7th the ride will be meaningful.Dannys team 2

 

Peace.


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Health


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.

 

Peace


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Today


March 11

I turned 50 on March 11, 2011. I weighed somewhere around 300 pounds and my weight was climbing. If asked, I would have told you that I doubted I would see 55. I also would have told you that while I wanted to lose weight, I didn’t expect I would. I wasn’t doing a damned thing to make it happen.

I had lost some weight in 2004. I gained it back. I had lost weight in 2010. I gained it back.

I would have to admit that by 2011 I had accepted that I was a fat man. I was going to stay a fat man. I would die a fat man.

Between March 11, 2011 and December 27, 2011 something in me changed. Something fundamental to who I am and who I wanted to be changed and I really don’t know what. Simply put it really doesn’t matter. What matters is it did change. I did change.

By March 11, 2012 I had dropped to the 268 pounds. I went for a walk with The Younger One and I took a bike ride. It was 62 degrees and I got in a ten-mile ride. It was slow and it was difficult but I did it.

March 11, 2013 I weighed in at 203 pounds. I had a head cold much as I have one today. I was able to get in a ride on the Sunday before my birthday but this time I rode 30 miles despite some cold weather and the head cold.

And today I turn 53.

I again have a March Head Cold.

Riding my Synapse is good for my synapse.  Getting ready for this evening's ride

Riding my Synapse is good for my synapse. Getting ready for this evening’s ride

Finally the weather is good. It was 62 degrees when I got home from work. I changed in to my gear and I went for a short ride. I went only 8 miles. Loaded with cold medications and my head all congested…. But I rode. That is what matters. When presented with ample and legitimate excuses to not ride I still rode. I got in my Birthday Ride.

Today is more than a birthday.

Today is a good day for remembering and thinking and committing to continued progress.

My life has changed a great deal since December, 2011. Three birthdays now and I am a very different person. I am fit. I am lean. My mind is clearer and I am happier. I have kept this going since 2011. It is a part of me now.

There was a time in my life when I really would not have expected to make it to 53. So many of my friends did not. Here I am. Still riding. Still moving. Still on the Journey.

Birthday Cake

The Younger One begged and pleaded with Missus. He cajoled and he wheedled. He convinced Missus to make me a chocolate birthday cake.

How could I refuse a piece?

I didn’t. I have a nice sized piece and it was delicious.

Of course I ate a light dinner to prepare for the cake.

The Younger One had a piece as well. A nice thick piece. Just so I wouldn’t eat alone of course.

I have a very giving and caring son.

The Long Winter

I must be living right. Today was magnificent. In the mid-sixties and sunny even when I got home from work, It was perfect riding weather. It was exactly the sort of weather I love riding in. Nearly no wind and the temperature right in my comfort zone.

Tomorrow it will be cold and rainy. On Thursday there is a real possibility of snow and ice.

Somehow on my birthday we had beautiful weather.

It has been a long and unhappy winter. Today I rode 8 miles and they are the first miles I have put on my bike this year.

And the winter is not over yet.

But the signs are there. The sun is higher in the sky. The snow begins to melt. The cold spells are shorter.

Spring will be here and I will be healthy and I will ride.

And the Journey will continue.

I will get out and get in some hikes before working at the shop on weekends. I will get in early morning ride on the weekends and I will get in some evening rides during the week.

It is all this and more that fuels me. It is this that keeps me on my Journey. The plans and the goals. The memories to be made of standing on a bluff and looking over the Hudson, of flying along a country road on a solo ride, of sharing the companionship of good people as we pedal along in a group ride.

It is the view in the mirror when I see the me I am now. It is the disbelief when I look at pictures taken of me only three birthdays ago. It is the knowledge that while it is not always difficult it will ever be easy and I am good with that. I am ready.

When I was 50 years old and 300 plus pound I didn’t think I would make 53. I have no idea why I was OK with that.

Now I am 53 years old. I am a Father. I am a Husband. I am a Brother and an Uncle and a Cousin and a Friend.

It took me many years to understand the value in being all that. It took me many years to understand that I was the value in being all that.

Yes. Spring is coming. It has been a long winter.

Peace


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Looking Back, Looking Forward and the Right Decision


Eight Days

I know where I was two years ago.

I was here. In Jersey. I was working at a plastic compounding plant as the Plant Manager. I was not overly fond of the job but it paid and I was optimistic that I would grow to like the place. I was 310 pounds or somewhere around that.

I was trying to figure out the holiday schedule and I was trying to figure out if I had any nice clothes that fit so I would have something to wear to our friend’s Christmas Eve party in five days.

I was not thinking that in eight days I would finally reach that place where I would finally do something about my weight and my lack of fitness.

I didn’t know that in eight days I would start the Journey.

I am thinking about this a great deal this week. I am counting down in my head to the two-year mark. Two years from the day that I woke up and told Missus “I am starting today”.

I will write more about my thoughts as I approach that day.

Goals

Last night at the Bike Shop Holiday Party the shop owner, BP, asked us to share our cycling goals for the coming year. He told us they had to be Specific and Measurable. Each of us had something we wanted to do. Return to racing, compete in a triathlon…. KF had the best one. She simply wants to ride again. She had a serious accident and returning to the bike is a worthy goal and one none of us is foolish enough to think is out of reach for the woman we call Fury.

As the question worked its way around the table I had plenty of time to contemplate my answer. I had goals in mind. I know what I want to accomplish in the coming cycling season. How to put it to words…

Because I was sitting just two places from BP and the question started in the other direction, I had plenty of time to think, as I would answer next to last. When it came to me I made one little joke and then I stated my goals. Thirty-five hundred miles and at least one Century.

Those are my goals.

My cycling goals.

On the grander scale my goals are to get to and maintain 195 pounds. I want to see two years at or below my goal weight in August 2014.

In business we say goals have to be SMART: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Timely.

I think mine are all that.

There is one other goal. It isn’t really Specific and I am not sure how I would measure it. I certainly hope it is achievable. I know it is relevant and I hope it will be timely. I want to be more comfortable being me.

That is my life goal.

The Right Decision

I started working at the bike shop in late May of this year. I needed a second job and the income that would come with it. The owner and manager at the shop both thought I would be a good fit. I love bikes. I am personable. I have a good story to tell. Everything else would come, they assured me.

I sold a bike my first day. I sold three the next. I have sold many bikes since. Customers come in looking for me. I enjoy the interaction. I love putting someone on a new bike and seeing the smile on their face as they roll it out the door and take it home.

It goes well beyond that. It is the group of people I work with. At the Shop Holiday Party last night I realized just how much I enjoy the company of the people I work with at the shop. The diverse personalities united in a shared love of cycling and all things bicycles. The easy humor. The laughter. The conversations. About Bikes. About Cars. About plans and rides and goals.

It is the shared enjoyment of seeing a coworker take his new bike out for the first time. It is, for me, almost a sense of family.

I take an odd pleasure at being the “old man” of the shop (though the owner is only a few months younger than I am). I enjoy the “kids”. I learn from them every day that I work and every ride I am on with them.

Today I was the coworker taking home his new bike. The grin on my face was matched only by the smiles on the faces of my friends and coworkers at the shop.

BP made this happen for me. He worked with me and made this bike a reality for me.

Much more than the bike.

I have not always made great decisions. We all make mistakes in our lives. I look back at the decision to leave the plastics compounding plant and I know I made a mistake. I thought I was doing the right thing. It didn’t work out.

Synapse Hi-MOD 2

Synapse Hi-MOD 2

I know I made the right decision when I asked BP and NP if they would be interested in hiring me for weekends at the shop.

I know that a good portion of why I have stayed fit and kept the weight off is the shop rides and more than that, the encouragement from the people at the shop. From the occasional kick in the head from CB for my occasional self-doubt, to the critical bits of advice from BP as we ride, to the challenge from KE, JS and NP to ride harder, rider further and rider faster…. This has been the right decision.

Peace.


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My Annual Maudlin List of Thanks (2013 version)


A Place Along the Journey

A Place Along the Journey

I am thankful for my sons. They make every day interesting and exciting and watching them grow has been a singular joy. The Older is loving, sweet and funny. He faces the challenges of life in his own way and has made our lives more full, more interesting, sometimes more difficult, but full of love. The Younger is smart, funny, loving, caring and gentle. He is patient with his brother, understanding at a level beyond his 13 years, interested in so many things and a joy to be with. One of the great joys is being told how polite and respectful he is towards others. There are bumps along the way but his willingness to learn and his delight in the world make it a fun trip.

I am thankful that Missus and I are still together after 25 years. It has not always been easy and it has not always been fun but we find ways to make it through the hard times and we are still standing after all these years and still smiling and laughing.

I am thankful for the people who haven’t had to but have tolerated me anyway and call me friend. They have been there for me when I have needed them and they know I am there for them. Though life gets busy and it is difficult to find the time to get together we do manage and it is always good.

I am thankful for the many years CJH and I were friends. At times we were nearly as close as brothers and his friendship enriched my life and contributed positively to the person I am. I am thankful the memories will stay with me and will help fill the empty space.

I am thankful for the continued friendship with JH and her children. I am thankful they have the memories of a loving and caring husband and father and the support and love of friends and family as they navigate their way through their tragic loss.

I am thankful for the 38 years of friendship with JNN. Friendships that last this long and are this deep are rare and beautiful, much like JNN herself. Even before Caller ID we would know who was on the phone before answering. And she calls me by one of the few nicknames I have ever liked having.

I am thankful for the 40 years of friendship with KEB. We can pick up the phone and continue a conversation from a month ago as if it was a minute ago. We have seen each other at our best and we have seen each other at our worst and through it all we are friends. For her I wish the strength to find her bearings after her devastating loss.

I am thankful for my friendship with KG. She has called me on my excuses, challenged my assumptions and verbally kicked me in the butt more than once to keep me moving on this journey.

I am thankful for my friendship with PGB as he has steadfastly encouraged me on my Journey and helped celebrate my successes.

I am thankful for my friendships with SA and MA, MT and LG for all that they add to our lives, their understanding of the challenges we live with and their willingness to find a way to fit us in to their lives.

I am thankful for the continued and deepening love I see between MTT and UJF.

I am thankful for my jobs. Both of them. With the one I have found a company to grow with, even at my advanced years, and with the other I have found a way to express my love of cycling and share it with others. In both places I am thankful to work with good people who care about what they do and the people they work with.

I am thankful for my siblings. They are all good people, caring and loving and supportive. Their love of The Older and their efforts to include him in everything makes our lives better.

I am thankful that Oldest Brother and Sister-In-Law have three wonderful children and will soon become grandparents. I hope they see that they set a great example as loving and supportive parents for their son to follow as he and JF raise their daughter.

I am thankful that Older Nephew , Younger Nephew and Niece are finding their way in the world with such a good foundation.

I am thankful that each of them has someone special in their lives to make the journey better.

I am thankful for Kid Sister and Brother-In-Law and Brother and Sister-In-Law. They are wonderful people who make my world better by being involved in our lives. I only wish I could see them more often.

I am thankful that I have the world’s best Mother-in-law. She is a caring and wonderful lady. She has never once interfered in our lives but has always been there for us. I have a pretty great sister-in-law as well.

I am thankful to still be here at the age of 52, having neglected my health and wellbeing for many of those years.

I am thankful that I have stayed on this journey and that I have been encouraged in it by many friends and my family. I am thankful that I found that thing within me to stay on the path and keep the weight off and the fitness up. I am thankful that these efforts have so improved my health.

I wish I had served as an inspiration to one.

I am thankful for life and the richer place that it is because of the people who are readings this.



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I am all about Goals.


Goal Met.

I set goals. The way my mind works I work best if I have a distinct goal. Something I believe is achievable but still a stretch. This is what motivates me. Pursuing the goal.

When I started this Journey I set the goal for weight loss at 70 pounds. Then I realized that I need something more aggressive and I set the goal at 95 pounds.

When I added cycling back to my life in March of 2012 I set the goal for miles in 2012 at 1500. Never came close. The knee injury saw to that. I don’t think I had 500 miles in when I hurt the knee in June 2012. It would have been easy to set the goal at 1500 miles for 2013. It makes sense. I tried in 2012. I didn’t make it. Setting that as the goal again makes sense.

I set it at 2500. Originally I set it way to high. I thought I might be able to do 400 miles but soon recognized I was being much to aggressive. 2500 miles it would be. I recognized that this was still a pretty big number. I do have a full-time job. My riding would be mostly on weekends and long weekend and the occasional vacation day.

I started early. I started riding with the Local Bike Shop on Sunday mornings. 25-mile rides. Saturday I would ride 25 miles as well. 50 miles per weekend. Then I started doing the large organized rides. 40 miles in NYC, 65 miles for the Ride for Autism, the 75 miles on NYC Century, 40 miles in Hartford, 50 miles in Boston. In between I continued to do the shop rides. 25 miles, 30 miles. 18 miles from my house to the shop. Then I started working at the shop. 18 miles there on Saturday. 18 miles plus the 30 mile ride on Sunday. Rides after work. 80 mile weekends. 90 mile weekends. The miles added up.

Early June

Early June

 

Late June

Late June

Somehow in June I had already reached 1300 miles for the year. 50 miles on average every weekend is how… From June 2 (1319 miles) to today I managed to put on close to another 1200 miles. Today I hit my goal. 2500 miles for the year.

I piled the miles on faster in the first 6 months of the year than I did the next 5 months. Mostly from working two jobs. Hard to get the time on the bike that I wanted but I still found a way to get in 1183 more miles.

August

August

2502 miles as of the end of today’s ride. Not my fastest ride. Not my longest ride. But it was a good ride with good people and I had a great time. You would have needed a crowbar to pry the smile off my face as I looked down at the odometer and saw 2500 on the display.

Late September

Late September

Others do many times the miles I have done. There are people I work with at the shop who have 2, 3 or 4 times as many miles. I admire them and I aspire to build to that many miles. Not there yet. Someday…

I ride because I love the feeling of being on the bike. I love the burn in my legs as I fight my way up a hill. I love the rhythm of my breathing as I settle in to a long pull of a line of riders. I love the feeling of the air as it sweeps over me as I ride along at 20 miles per hour. I ride because there is a feeling almost like flying when you hit your sweet spot and the bike becomes an extension of your body, the shifting of the gears becomes instinctive, automatic, natural. Even clicking in an out of the pedals becomes as natural as walking. When you hit that spot, when you have a ride where everything, your bike, your body, is working right then riding the bike seems the most natural thing in the world and you feel released from the worries and cares of life. I ride because I can. I ride because I remember when I could not.

Next year I am aiming for 3500 miles. Because I can.

Goal Met

Goal Met

There is nothing special about these distances. 2500. 3500. They are just numbers on the cycle computer. I have said it before. Many others have done many more miles. For me.. Well for me this is a great many miles and it is a goal met and surpassed. I am not done yet this year. There will be a few more miles. Maybe even a few hundred more.

Goal Met.

Inspiration

I have been working at the Bike Shop on weekends since late May. When I was chatting with the Manager and the owners about working there they said they like my passion for cycling, my personality and the great story I have to tell. The story of hot I went from fat as a house couch potato to fit cyclist (my words not theirs).

Twice this weekend I had reason to share my story with customers. Both times I came away feeling good because I think I may have inspired two men to get back on the bike.

I was chatting with a fellow on Saturday. He was shopping for a bike for his son and getting another bike worked on. He is heavy-set. A big man, maybe six feet tall, 270 pound or so. We chatted about cycling and he related that in his younger days he had been a dedicated road cyclist. H loved to ride, to be out on the road and was fit and lean. Then Marriage, a career, children…. Soon he was out of shape and overweight. He seemed to really miss riding. I told him he should try to get back to it, get on the bike, build himself back to cycling shape and then join us on the Sunday rides. The conversation turned to how hard it is to lose the weight, to get fit again. So I showed him my picture. The picture taken in the summer of 2011. The picture of me standing at the grill.

August 14, 2011 310 Pounds

August 14, 2011
310 Pounds

Standing there with all 310-315 pounds of me. He asked who that was in the picture, knowing the answer I am sure, but asking anyway out of surprise that the lean bike shop guy in front of him was that person in the picture just two years ago.

Cheese Cake  Just before the ride started.

Cheese Cake Just before the ride started.

“HOW” was all he asked. We talked about “Eat Right, Eat Less, Move More”. We talked about the Journey, the plan, the goal. BP, my boss, was listening in from the end of the counter. Bp said “you should have seen Mark back in the early spring struggling with hills and now he leads the rides”.

I won’t over dramatize. The fellow seemed genuinely impressed. He told me I am an inspiration. He now knows it CAN be done.

I hope he does it. I hope he joins us on the Sunday rides come spring.

The second time was today. This is a gentleman who comes in the shop from time to time. Has bought several bikes from what I was told. He also has let his fitness slide but her is serious about getting back on the bike but is afraid that he is too slow for the Sunday rides. Afraid his fitness will be too far behind and he will hold us back. HE questioned whether at his age (a few years younger than me) he would be able to get back to where he was as a rider. Again I showed the picture. That picture. I told him about the plan, the goal, I told him about my Journey. He grabbed my hand, asked me my name again, shook my hand and thanked me for sharing my story and told me he would do everything he could to join us on Sunday…

I love working at the Bike Shop.

Peace


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Wednesday already?


Sometimes it just doesn’t work out

Weather is something I simply cannot control.

I had such plans for this weekend past.

None of them worked out….

Saturday I planned on a 30+ mile ride.  I got in 20.  I got started late as I was a little slow-moving that morning.  Then the weather grew threatening and I cut the ride a little short.

Sunday I got in the 18 miles to the shop and we STARTED the Sunday Morning Shop Ride but only two miles in the skies opened up and we retreated to the shop and ended up going for breakfast.  Twenty-two miles…

Monday, the day I had set aside for a long ride with the hope of getting 65-70 miles in was foggy all morning and then raining… Not a single mile on the bike on Monday.

My plans for a 150-mile weekend turned in to a 42-mile reality.

I have to accept it and make other plans for miles this week.

On Sunday, September 8, I am taking part in the NYC Century, One-Hundred miles through the streets of New York City.  I had hoped this weekend would serve as the base for that ride.  Understand that I know I am ready and it is not really a concern that the lack of riding the last three days will keep me from having the ability to ride the 100 next Sunday.  I simply wanted to continue to push my limits.  I have never ridden 150 miles in a three day stretch.  I wanted to prove to myself that I could and to have that bit of confidence going in to the century.

I hope it doesn’t rain next Sunday…

Overeating

It was not my best weekend for watching my intake.  Not sure why but I did overeat this weekend.  Part of it was the rain out on Sunday.  After the rain out we cleaned up and the shop owners and one other shop employee went to a favorite spot for breakfast.  Though I had already eaten my morning meal, I had a bagel with lox and cream cheese.  I called it lunch and it ALMOST fit in the plan but it was still more than I would have normally eaten and it stretched the calories.  I don’t know why I allowed myself to do that when I could have easily had a bowl of grits or oatmeal and saved myself 250 calories.

I have to watch that.  I allowed a social setting to dictate my eating and I know that this is a slippery slope for me.

My weight spiked this weekend at 208 pounds.  Not a good thing.  I know why.  I just don’t know why I allowed it.   Need to think about this but mostly I need to jump back on plan HARD.  Of course it was back down to 203.4 by last night.  Go figure….  Still up from where I want to be….

I can feel the weight on me.  Might be a psychological thing but I was feeling fat and sluggish yesterday.

Monday night’s dinner of smoked chicken with potato and Cole slaw was tasty and I stayed within the limits but it is not how my body is accustomed to eating and it contributed to the sluggish feeling yesterday.

I was back on plan yesterday: a light breakfast of cereal, grapes and milk.  I had a very light lunch and a nice dinner with plenty of vegetables followed by a light snack.  That kept me around 1800 calories for the day.  Get the body and mind pointed back in the right direction.

Evening Ride

I looked at the forecast and it looks like the weather may favor me with a window to get in an evening ride.  A quick 20 miles will help me feel like I have it all back together…

I am better to be around when I have gotten in my miles.  I feel better mentally and physically and that makes me a better father and husband and friend.  Today I feel just a bit grumpy and I think that has to do with not getting in the miles.  I think a quick ride tonight will do a world of good for all involved.

I will ride alone and I that will give me time to clear the mind.  By the time I get home from the ride I will have burned away the stresses of the day and be ready to enjoy the company of my family and ready to be with the human race again.

I am glad I returned to cycling.  It has helped me find my sanity.

A 5K

I have decided that I am going to run a 5K.  The legs may feel differently about it but I think I can do it.  I have the fitness for it.  The issue is that the legs have not done any running of note in ages and are used to pushing pedals not running down the street.

I picked out a local 5K run that is a fund-raiser for a local Fire Department.  It is a very flat route.  I want to do it just so I can say I did it.  It is one more step in the right direction from where I was.

I know I will not become a “runner” but it is something I can and want to check off the list of accomplishments.  Along with the 100 mile ride, it represents a distance traveled far beyond the geographic measurements.

As with the cycling, the walking, the hiking, running is one more thing I could not do.  Running a 5K will be one more thing I can now do that I could not.  It is another milestone, a landmark on the Journey.  It is a representation of the place I am now, so far from where I was then.

I hope KG can do the run with me.  I will need her telling me to SUCK IT UP to get through.

The best thing

I was asked what I think is “The Best Thing” thing about having lost the weight.  I don’t have an answer.  So many things come to mind.  There is the health thing of course.  How can one not be happy about the health improvements that came with the fitness gain and weight loss?  There is the looks thing.  It is nice to not stand out because of my size.  I love the “fit in to tight spots” thing as well.  The comfort thing is big with me.  Not being uncomfortable in chairs with arms.  Fitting in to airplane seats.

I love the buying clothes in the regular men’s department as well.  The 34 inch waist and the large size shirts.  My size in stock and on sale is wonderful.

I guess what I really like about the weight loss, I guess my favorite thing about it, is being “normal”.  Not being “fat”, not needing BIG sizes, being able to fit in booths, airplane seats, tight spaces.  Yeah, that’s it …

Nah, that is second best.

It is the health thing.  Improving the odds that I will see the younger one grow to adulthood….

Yeah, that is the best thing.

 

Peace