A Small Success and a Twisted Scene

I thought I would blog on the events of yesterday. Not that yesterday held grand and glorious events but because there was a small success and a twisted scene.

The small success.

It’s has been seven (yes, count them … seven) days since I’ve had a beer.

So what, you may ask? Well, I don’t believe that I was becoming or had become an alcoholic. But I did drink a lot of beer. Furthermore, I held a strict personal policy of staying home to drink beer. So, when I opened a beer at home I stayed home. Never would I drink and drive. If I was out to dinner to family or friends my policy was to ride with someone or not drink at all if I was driving.

At first (meaning after Nikki left a year ago) I used the beer to soothe the depression. It’s amazing how the world and the future looked brighter after a beer or two or three or four or more. However, after a while, I realized that I was missing out on ‘stuff’ I could be doing in the evenings (outside of the house) because I rushed home after work to drink beer and wouldn’t leave afterwards.

So, I was really stuck at home. At first it was ok, especially when I was remodeling the kitchen or working on other house projects. But now it’s become kind of restrictive. Because I could be walking the fitness trails at the local parks or I could be going to the movies or just enjoying the evening with a drive to the countryside. But if I drink beer, I stay home.

So, I decided to give up the beer. Now, I have the freedom to do stuff in the evenings after work and not be chained up at home. Giving up the beer also impacts my new fitness effort as drinking beer and trying to lose weight and improve my fitness doesn’t really go well together.

The Twisted Scene.

I had dinner with my parents last night. We talked about my Colorado 2015 trip and other things. After dinner, I drove to the nearby Krogers to pick up some groceries.

June 29 just happened to be Nikki’s and my wedding anniversary. It was a hard day otherwise but the fact that I wasn’t married to Nikki any longer made it a wee bit harder. Anyways, I was at the closest Krogers to my house but it also happens to be next door to Nikki’s apartment complex. So, I texted her to see if she needed anything.

She replied and said no. She also invited me over to say hello.

Nikki and her new family and I have a great relationship. There’s no hostility and no ill will between us. I understood that Nikki wanted and needed to move in other directions. After all, she so much younger than I am and so full of energy and life that I could hardly keep up with her. Her new significant other is able to keep up! It’s a good match for them.

Anyways, I spent a few minutes at their apartment and told them about my Colorado trip and my new fitness plans. They wished me well. I only stayed a short time as they were sitting down to dinner.

I really wouldn’t say that the scene was twisted in the gross or perverted sense. But, understanding that June 29 would have been our 14th wedding anniversary sort of gives it a twisted element to it.

Anyways … I’m thankful they are happy and in love each other. Youth has it benefits.

I like to include a photo with each post but couldn’t really find one to associate to this post. So, here’s a photo from my recent Colorado 2015 trip showing a small portion of the Cross Creek trail in the Holy Cross Wilderness.

On the Cross Creek trail in the Holy Cross Wilderness.

On the Cross Creek trail in the Holy Cross Wilderness.

A Starting Weight

On Thursday, June 25, I finally stepped on the bathroom scale.

I wasn’t shocked at the weight. Actually, I expected more. I secretly wished for less.

But the reality was 200.7 pounds.

Can I believe it? On one hand, yes, I believe it. After all the beer and junk food and lack of exercise for the past year I really should say “only 200.7?”. On the other hand, I’m ashamed that I let myself degrade to that weight again.

As they say … It is what it is.

So, 200.7 is my starting weight. If I lose a pound a week then it would take 46 weeks to make it to my goal weight of 155. If everything goes as planned and as hoped, then by mid January 2016, I should be at my goal weight.

The 155 pound goal weight was calculated using the BMI. Actually, any weight between 154.9 and 115 would be considered “normal” for my height. So, I tagged 155 as the goal weight.

According to the BMI, I am obese with a BMI of 32.4.

At one point I did weighed 155 pounds. It was about 4 years ago after a major weight loss and exercise campaign. So, I know it can be done. Just a simple formula of calories in and calories out. Eat less and exercise more. Drink more water. Drink less soda. So simple.

And so hard.

C25K … Day 2

Ah so … I finished the second day of the first week of the C25K program. The 29 minute session called for a 5 minute warm up followed by 5 sets of running for 45 second, walking for 90 seconds, running for 60 seconds and then walking for 60 seconds followed by a 5 minute cool down. My total mileage was 1.88 at 15.33 per mile.

It was good to get outside on this Sunday morning and exercise. It’s been a long time since I’ve done this. Starting slow, starting simple. Hopefully in 8 weeks I will be strong and fit enough to run a 5K.

In other news … the kids and their girlfriends and boyfriends went to the lake yesterday (June 27, 2015) for a day of boating and tubing. Usually, on a lake day, I would drink beer to my heart’s content. But yesterday, I drank no beer, only water. The is a break in my usual MO. It took some self-discipline to go the day without a beer. I survived and hopefully I lost an ounce or so.

I was rewarded with a lovely sunset.

Sunset view from the Lake Cabin on June 27, 2015.

Sunset view from the Lake Cabin on June 27, 2015.

First Run of the New Effort

Brooks Addiction 11

Blurry photo of my new Brooks Addiction 11, size 9.5 running shoes on my overweight fat ankles and feet.

Yay !! My new running shoes arrived. Brooks Addiction 11, size 9.5. I vowed that when the new running shoes are delivered I will immediately hit the road.

And that is what I did.

Since this was my first fun in a very long time, I thought I would take it slow and easy. I didn’t realize how hard slow and easy would be. I followed the first workout of the first week of the C25K program. It was harder than I envisioned.

The 45 extra pounds that I’m carrying doesn’t help. I really need to lose those pounds. I don’t know how much of those 45 pounds are beer calories but I’m certain it’s a large percentage. I could feel those calories slosh around in my fat cells.

It will take some time. Two months at least as I follow the C25K program. So, hopefully, by the end of August I will be trained for a 5k. And that is good. Since I would like to run in the Greenwood Indiana Trail Trek 5K on September 12, 2015.

I bought the new running shoes from RunningShoes.com. I was too lazy to go to the near by running store. I wasn’t too thrilled with the way the package arrived. It was just the crushed shoe box loosely shrink wrapped. It did not include a note of thanks for buying from RunningShoes.com. I would have heard a “thank you” from the local running store. And the shoes felt used. I checked the soles and they looked and felt new but the uppers felt soft and used. At least they gave me free shipping.

After the 29 minute work out where I ran for a total of 7.5 minutes (alternating between a 45 second run, then a 90 second walk, then a 45 second run and then a 60 second walk repeating 5 times with a 5 minute warm up walk and a 5 minute cool down walk), I ran out (actually drove the car) to pick up a new pair of head phones. The old pair wouldn’t stay in my ears.

Hopefully I’m on the right track. A fresh start. A new effort.


The End of An Affair

No beer for the last two days. Yay. A personal best for me.

At my last appointment, the doctor scolded me and said that I need to cut back on beer, sodium and calories. And, she added, I needed to increase my exercise.

I’m certain her short but firm lecture had something to do with my sharp weight gain and high blood pressure.

I agreed that I should cut back on calories and sodium and increase exercise … but beer? I told her that I don’t think I could cut back on beer. After all, the company I work for provides glycol chillers to breweries. I had to be fluent on “beer”. And fluency meant I had to drink many different types of beer.

“How much beer do you drink a day?” she asked.

My instant response, “About 4 – 6 cans, on average”.

I think she rolled her eyes as if anyone with any intelligence would know the immediate answer. She searched for a pad of paper and pencil. She wrote:

5 x 200 = 1000.

I knew what she was illustrating. I knew that every Bub Light or Samuel Adams Lite or an IPA averaged about 200 calories a can. Some craft beers are even more in calories.

She pointed out the obvious. “If you cut back on the beer you will cut a thousand calories a day”.

So obvious. So true. Yet, so hard.

I know I need to cut back on the beer. I know that every time I open a can and hear the crack of the seal and the whoosh of the carbonation, that every sip, every gulp is extra calories that I don’t need.

But the high, the buzz, the intoxication, the inebriation is wonderful. It helps me cope, helps me forget, helps me relax. The world does indeed look better after a beer.

But, it’s getting out of hand. I’m not reckless when I have beer and my policy is that I drink at home and once I start I never drive. So I spend a lot of evenings and days at home. And, I have gained way too much weight. My fitness has degrade to the point where I can hardly climb a flight of stairs without breathing hard. And, my recent trip to Colorado could have been a better time had I been in better shape.

So, hopefully, the end of my year-long excessive affair with beer has come. I’ve decided to stop my excessive drinking. Hopefully, I will trade the cans of beer for better fitness and health, mental and physical. I plan to restart the C25K in the next few days (when my new running shoes arrive from RunningShoes.com) so maybe I am on my way to better health and life.

Wish me luck !!!

River Runners Pale Ale. I had this pint at Doc's Bar and Grille in Leadville Colorado.

River Runners Pale Ale. I had this pint at Doc’s Bar and Grille in Leadville Colorado. Wonderful. Simply Wonderful. Will be missed.

It’s Been a While

It’s been a while since I’ve looked at my blog. It’s been a while for a lot of things.

I never wanted the blog to be a dumping ground for my self-pity … but that is essentially where I’ve been for almost a year … in a cauldron of bubbling crude of self-pity.

July 1st will celebrate Nikki’s departure from the house into her own apartment. It’s hard to believe it’s been a year. I wish I could say that I accomplished glory and grandeur in that year … that I’ve moved on to better and other things … but I haven’t. Other than starting (and not finishing) a few DIY projects, the last year has seen a lack of exercise, weight gain, too much beer drinking, no creativity, depression and deep self-pity.

Nikki has gone on to another relationship and seems happy. I’m thankful we still talk and text when we can. I’m thankful her new significant other cares deeply for her in ways I couldn’t.

I spent time last week driving to and from Colorado. Stayed in Vail and day hiked around the valley. Even drove to Aspen for an afternoon. I wanted it to be a week of meditation, reflection on my past and future.

The hiking was great! Absolutely wonderful. Although it was extremely strenuous at most … maybe most of the time. I know that altitude play a part, but I believe my overall lack of fitness played a larger part.

I thought maybe the solo hiking and driving would give me an epiphany. However, I didn’t have one. Unless you count the realization that a lack of exercise and profound overeating and drinking have resulted in a degraded fitness level that has spread into other areas of life.

But I already knew that.

I’m working out a plan that should bring my eating and drinking in control and better my fitness. The plan isn’t rocket science. Eat less, drink less, exercise more.

So simple. Yet, so hard.

This was the southern view from the Whitney Lake Trail in the Holy Cross Wilderness on June 16, 2015.

This was the southern view from the Whitney Lake Trail in the Holy Cross Wilderness on June 16, 2015.