Thursday, April 29, 2010

You are not in control

That seems to be the message in banning toys in kid's meals. Mickey D's, BK, et al. are the pusher man. You can't resist that sweet, sweet burger and fries. And the toy? That's the icing on top. It practically turns a kid's meal into sherm. Parents have no culpability here, right?

Parents have a duty to say "No" (unlike three year olds that enjoy saying it just to frustrate Mommy & Daddy). That's what makes us parents. Yes, advertising works. But to suggest that we as human beings are helpless against it's powers is both sad and wrong. At what point are we in charge of our own lives? Responsible for our decisions? Increasingly less, it seems.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Thanks for the Shout Out

A big thank you to Steven Spruiell for the shout out on NRO. The more folks that find this piddling little blog, the more motivation / support I've got. That and the the big F-you I want to be able to have for Mr. Ambinder and one of my docs.

I had my checkup with the general surgeon who removed the cyst on my head and he said, "Everything looks good. I won't need to see you again until you're ready to have the bariatric surgery." I can't decide whether he's being arrogant doctor, a pushy used-car salesman, or just a dick. Either way, it just adds fuel to the fire.

I'll soon be adding the Mrs. as a contributor here because a) she thinks adding what & how I'm eating will provide some more depth to this endeavor and b) I think she'll have an interesting point of view to bring to this discussion.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Week 1 Weigh-in

Official weigh-in for Week 1: 294.5 lbs. Down 7.5 lbs. For those of you at a more normal weight this might seem like a big drop. For me, not so much. When you're this heavy just minor adjustments have pretty dramatic effects. If past is prologue, this sort of week-to-week loss will be typical until I get to about 275, then things will level off. From there to 250 will be a longer slog. Anything under 250 is uncharted territory. I may have to find Jimmy Tango and "ride the snake."

Friday, April 23, 2010

What Now?

I'm still working out my approach to this. That is, both the blog AND the weight loss. I'm shooting for weigh-ins on Mondays but after that we'll see where it goes. I'm not sure I want to go all "Julie & Julia" since I've taken a rather antagonistic position against my muse.

As for shedding the pounds, my first big step is going to be portion control. Some folks eat to live while other live to eat. I've spent my life solidly in the camp of the latter. My wife is an amazing cook and has the best chance to control what and how much I eat. I've eaten more healthily since we've been together than I ever did in my bachelor days. Problem being I still eat too damned much. The Mrs. has suggested following the good old, American Heart Association, Weight Watcher-style diet. It may morph into the "point system" variety. She's offered to pack my lunches to ensure portion sizes (and mostly it'll be leftovers from last night's dinner). Dinners, I'll get my what's on my plate. Good news is, she prepares very little from a box. Most of our grocery shopping is done from the "outer ring" of the store - fresh / less processed stuff - so I feel like I'm already on the right track. Also, if any of you out there are reading this. I'm all ears. Send me your success stories (or even things you tried that didn't work).

Thursday, April 22, 2010


Why am I doing this? Mostly because I'm 35, married, with two little girls. I'm morbidly obese and hypertensive. What got this started? Two things. I recently had a cyst removed from my head (another story for another day, but I've got great pictures) and the surgeon who removed it is also a bariatric surgeon. He took one look at me and told his medical assistant to run a BMI calculation on me. I'm 6'2", 302 lbs. so the BMI came back as "GRAVY", err....38.8. Morbidly Obese. The guy was very nice, very professional and a bit pushy as to my need for bariatric surgery. You see, he cures diabetes. He cures hypertension. You can't do it without him. The statistic he quoted was that, long term, only 5% are successful at weigh loss w/o surgery. Secondly, I stumbled upon Marc Ambinder's piece on The Moral Urgency of Obesity and his follow-up on 10 Ways to Solve the Problem of Obesity. I also found out that Mr. Ambinder himself had bariatric surgery. I don't remember how I found the first article. Twitter, probably. Regardless, I disagree with what he writes and have now set about proving him wrong. There's only one way to solve obesity. Fewer calories must be consumed than are used. It's a pretty simple equation. Ambinder discounts self-will. I do not.

I got to thinking about how I've ever really achieved things in life. I've needed three things: motivation, support, and a nemesis. Motivation: that's pretty easy. My family. Support: Also pretty easy. Also my family, but I'm hoping to add to this support with (hopefully) readers and commenters here. Lastly a nemesis. Nemesis, thy name is Ambinder. I’ve never met the man, and until recently had never read his work. I only recognized the name through my reading of others. I’m sure he’s a pleasant fellow. Just wrong.

What are my goals? The above surgeon suggested 220 lbs. as a goal which would still put me at a BMI in the "overweight" category. But I also haven’t seen 220 lbs. since I was a sophomore in high school and 4” shorter than I am currently. In getting there I hope to normalize my BP and take some of the stress off of my arthritis riddled knees. I also hope to prove that “fat” is a choice. And today I’m choosing to no longer be that guy.