Thursday, September 27, 2007

Pre-Game Warm-Up

It’s been a week since my doc slapped me in the face with high triglyceride levels and told me to shape up. So what have I done about it? Planning mostly…which admittedly doesn’t take one pound or reduce one cell of gooey blood. So, let me share my plan.

I mentioned triglycerides a lot in the last blog. The types of food that increases trigs are carbohydrates and alcohol. I’ve already quit drinking alcohol (with the exception of the wine tasting vineyard tour on vacation a couple weeks ago), so now I have to cut back on the carbs. There are a couple of diets to consider…the more popular being the Atkin’s Diet and the South beach Diet.

I lost some significant weight and lowered my trigs using the Atkin’s diet a few years ago. The only problem was that I got real tired of eating nothing but meat and eggs. I felt greasy and my breath stunk. I never bought into the whole Atkin’s diet because of the lack of grains (bread) and fruit. These are basic foods that NEED to be consumed. At least that’s what my health teacher taught me many years ago. So while facing this current challenge, I decided not to give the late Dr. Atkin’s another chance.

Next week, I’ll be starting the South Beach Diet. My wife lost a lot of weight using this diet in the past, and since I’m the house cook, I lost some weight along with her. South Beach isn’t about eliminating all carbs (except for the first week) but about eating the right carbs…such as whole grains and fruit. This diet makes much more nutritional sense for me.

My biggest challenge when facing this diet will be the first two weeks when I have to follow an Atkin’s-like, low-carb plan. No late night fig newton snacks. No morning bread, waffles or orange juice. No M&M’s. Just basic meat, eggs and vegetables. I’ll survive, but I’ll be grumpy after the first couple days I’m sure.

Why am I waiting until next week to start…why not now? Basically, we have a lot of food in the house that’ll go to waste after we start this new diet. Yes, we…as my wife will be dieting alongside me. This week, I’ve been eating up the last of the waffles and cereal. I’ve been eating those fig newtons. And I’ve been eating the last of the frozen entrees in the freezer. However, I have started making some changes. I’m transitioning from OJ to V8 (not an easy transition I’ll admit). I’m choosing salads when eating out, which we do far too much of anyhow. And I’ve gone cold turkey on M&Ms.

One other reason we’re dieting "starting next week" is that my wife and are celebrating our 11th anniversary this weekend. We’re going to pamper ourselves for a local but overnight "getaway" to include a dinner at one of our favorite, pre-kid restaurants. This get-away also includes a full breakfast the next morning. While we COULD structure our meals to the newer diet, I think we want to savor this last taste as we celebrate. Call it a bachelor party for diet. The thing is…we’ll still be ordering sensibly, in that we’ve found that eating "bad" things makes us now feel…well…bad. We’re embracing the new diet and merely giving the old diet a little push out the door over the weekend.

So the slight changes in the diet this week is kind of a pre-game warm-up. The real battle starts on October 1. I’ll make sure to share every thought and activity in embracing this new lifestyle.

Thanks for all the encouragement and comments
thus far.

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