Day 227: Three out of Four

Feeling pretty good these days about sobriety and exercise. Recovering from the half-marathon and overheating, but did a good 10k this morning.

Sleep is going well, too. Operation Don’t Get Up seems to be working! The cat has been doing a lot better about morning antics. I’m trying to get to sleep before nine every night, with more or less success.

All of this, and weighing/food tracking has fallen right back off. It kind of starts with vacation and being out of town, but then turns into a “meh” thing when I get back. And I’ve been pretty good about food lately. Not perfect, but pretty good.

But, as past experience has shown, repeatedly, being pretty good doesn’t mean I don’t need to keep track of it. That’s the cycle I know well. Doing well,  giving myself permission to slack off with tracking, then getting off-track entirely.

So it’s time to start reasserting the food stuff.

Again, I’m feeling good. I’m batting .750, with sobriety, sleep and exercise going well. But the missing leg of the table, or chair (what’s my metaphor again?) needs attention now, while it’s still going pretty well.

So I think it’s time to re-institute the evening checklist and morning food check-in. These aren’t big deals, they’re just minor pains in the ass. I don’t like doing it because they’re pains in the ass. But they’re necessary pains in the ass, and I need to stop looking at them as optional and more as mandatory.

 

Day 208: Slightly Less Bored With Myself

Okay, so I’ve established that I need to break old patterns or I’ll drive myself crazy. And this seems to be working, at least in terms of having a few good days under my belt. I’m slightly less bored with myself.

So “not going crazy” is probably the best motivation I’ve found so far. Noted. But how do I find goals I care about to target? “Don’t go crazy” is compelling, but it’d be nice to not go crazy toward something.

“Lose weight for better health and to look better” is clearly not working out for me. At least, it hasn’t to date. I’m grinding some progress, yes, but it’s grinding. It’s not a “woo-hoo” goal, it’s a “fine, let’s grind” goal.

I guess I’m just not that vain. And I feel… okay healthy. Virtuous enough with the sobriety and proximity to veganism. So I don’t really feel driven to get much fitter. Would I like clothes to fit better? Sure. Would I like to be healthier? Sure. Do I feel pressure to make that change? Nah.

So there’s gotta be a different key to exercise/diet than that standard-issue thing. Or maybe I just need to set targets without worrying so much about goals.

It’s weird! I should care! I should feel an immense societal burden to be fit and handsome! But I’m a middle-aged dude and I run a lot. I can do 20 pushups without barfing. I feel like I’m in the top 50 percentile for fitness among people my age, and I don’t care enough to strive for top 10% or whatever.

So maybe I need to do less “this is my deep motivation” and more “I bet I can do X” in terms of keeping myself interested. Less soul-searching and more tweaking just for fun.

I’m going to mull this over a bit… I’ve heard that profound motivation is key my whole life. But when I’m not profoundly motivated, maybe there’s a different trigger?

Day 176: Back To It

Staycation over! I marked my last day by eating wayyyy to much sugar, and wound up sleeping really badly. So kind of a rocky start, but I’m getting back to it feeling pretty good. I’m proud of getting the kitchen island done, complete with a bit of a re-org in there yesterday.

I’m looking forward to getting back to just the job for a while. Additional responsibilities are getting shelved, and I’m working not to suddenly take on a bunch more stuff. So… just the job will be kind of nice for a while.

I haven’t done daily weight or meal planning in a while, too. I’m a bit scared of getting back to it. But I’m also a bit excited to be getting back to it. Maybe it’s just the moka pot, but I’m pretty jazzed.

Comedy is still important, especially now that I’m back to it.

I listened to so much Questions for Lennon during my staycation that I kind of burned out on it. But I’m thrilled to find out that the Frantics are sifting through their entire CBC archives from the ’80s to condense all their material down to a new podcast, which started in January.  So that’ll keep me going for a while.

Tinkering with the new side thing continues, but this week on weeknights, focus is 100% going to be on getting my second show for the radio station done (tonight), then working on songs I still owe people from way back. Again, I think the caffeine is helping right now, but in general, I’m feeling confident. Which is nice.

My goals are set in terms of weight loss, I have the equipment I need to exercise, and I have the willpower restored. I feel good! Now it’s just a matter of maintaining that moving forward. And calling a doctor about my wonky knee.

Day 151: Food Reboot

Kind of a backwards day today. I went back to bed after waking up with the cat this morning. My wife’s alarm didn’t go off. And we were pretty tired after a big day yesterday. We’re building a Swedish-style daybed from plain lumber, which is exhilarating but turns out to be pretty exhausting to. Anyway: today, Day 151, is the food reboot. As discussed yesterday.

It’s time to stop dicking around with food. Food is now Job One. Well, sobriety is now Job One. Food is Co-Job-One. Food, and sobriety, share Job One status. I love them both equally.

Daily Weight is a thing. Every day now. I’ve slacked off on it for Reasons, but it really has to be a daily thing. So that’s back.

Food planning is also now A Thing. Again, to be done in the morning and stuck to in the day.

A goal is now A Thing. 175 lbs. by 2018. That’s 25 pounds and well within a healthy weight for me. December 31 is 213 days away.  That’s 0.12 pounds a day. That does not seem that bad.

So I’m going to work from daily weight and an established goal line set at .012 pounds a day rather than the weekly tabulation. Because maybe I do need to freak out a little. For now.

Food reboot is essential, and it’s entirely doable.

Here’s the thing, and I’ve said this before: I am a smart guy. I understand how this stuff works. I’m not sure why I keep letting it get out from under me. But I now have The Science behind me: sobriety doesn’t lead to weight loss if food isn’t under control. Exercise doesn’t lead to weight loss if food is under control.

I’ve got to get food under control! Food reboot is the thing I must do.

So like I said, it’s Backwards Day today; I’m recording the podcast before exercise and coffee. I know I’ve sworn to stay off electronics before exercise. But today I’m all jazzed up and kind of angry at my weight so I think I’ll persevere.

 

Day 150: Goals, failures at the 150-day mark

150 days in, and time to take stock briefly. Goals, failures. There are some wins, and some not-wins.

  • Sobriety: definite win. I am crushing this. There’s occasional urges, and infrequent social pressure. But nothing too serious. People still ask me when I’m going to start drinking again, which is a fair question, because I’ve been positioning myself as “not drinking for now.” But I don’t feel any real need to drink any more. This would have seemed like an impossibly long road on January 1. One day at a time really does work.
  • Exercise: moderate win. I’m doing pretty well at getting out there; I’ve had a few injuries that I’ve gotten through. But I’m phoning it in more than I’d like; motivation is a factor a lot of time time.
  • Food: not great. Not TERRIBLE, but food is still my go-to vice, above and beyond anything. Food is still something I sneak and don’t tell people about. Food planning takes time and I’m not good about it. That’s kind of the key to the whole disaster — I don’t plan.
  • Sleep: pretty good? I’ve been spotty on the checklist lately.

It’s interesting hitting this milestone in the middle of Staycation Week, because that’s kind of throwing things off a little too.  The new podcast, too, is taking time — more time than I thought it would — and that, as well, is messing things up a little.

On the whole, I feel good. But it might be time to start actually doing some goal-setting… like “target weight” type goal setting. I’ve been resisting it so far. Scientifically, though, I now have proof that just staying sober and regular exercise isn’t enough to help the weight without some regimented goals and food monitoring.

Goals, failures, and food monitoring…

It comes back to food problems a lot, doesn’t it? I guess that’s the goal for the next 150 days. And those days start today. Okay, food, it’s on. Let’s do this thing. Or, y’know, not do this thing, if the thing is eating too much.