Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Bean's Entry

So, apparently Jodi (aka Hig, Higgie, Yicket, Showrosherie) wants me to contribute to her blog. At first I was concerned by this request because I thought becoming a blogger would mean I'd need to join a local dance group (and I am NOT getting sucked back in to that lifestyle!). However, apparently she just wants me to comment on things I never said (most of her speculations on what I'd write about were actually comments made by Ken, Dad, or Sir Archduke Frances Ferdinand).

However, since I have a new year's resolution to not be pushed around by older siblings anymore (mainly Barb) I have decided to ignore Jodi's request and write about something I'm very passionate about: Jodi's cats. Personally I think Stitch, or Baby Bear as he likes to be called, is cultivating some bad habits. I'm particularly concerned about his timid behavior immediately after Darren throws something at him.

Okay, I don't really want to talk about Jodi's cats anymore. I want to talk about change. However, I'll introduce the topic by talking about my first love- fast food. Wendy's and Mcdonald's are the reason I am overweight and probably the primary reason I am still single (slightly edging out the fact that I giggle like a 9-year-old girl whenever Night Court or Benson is on). I eat out multiple times every day and have done so for the past 15 years. I also travel about a week a month and during those weeks I eat quantities that Michael Moore wouldn't believe.

So now I've signed up for a half-marathon and I go to the gym every morning and I have a really serious face and I say things like "This time I'm losing the weight" and "I'm not kidding around anymore". I do this every few months or so and then I inevitably crash and spend a weekend sleeping on the floor at Pizza Hut. What makes this time any different? Benjamin Franklin said it's insanity to continue to do the same things and expect a different result. Am I doing anything really different?

The bigger question I would like to propose, dear 1.2 readers, is whether or not change is actually possible. Last fall I read a book by Alan Deutschman titled "Change or Die". In the book he questioned whether or not change is even possible after a certain age. He asked ,"if an authority figure you trusted (like a doctor) told you that you had to change your lifestyle or you would die in six months - would you change?" Chance are 90% that you won't/can't. He then cited several recent studies that demonstrate how he came up with that.

The book really upset me because I know change is possible. Just about every person on this earth that I admire has altered (changed) their life's direction because of a genuine desire to be something more tomorrow than they were yesterday. To do something more. To sacrifice something important for something more important. However, this book with its sobering data coupled with my recent 9,453 failed attempts to stick to any kind of a diet/exercise program really gave me a wake up call. Change is possible, but change is HARD.

My goal to lose some pounds is a very important goal to me. My desire to change grows every time I fail (which currently stands at 9,453 times). It's more than a physical goal for me; I want to be a person of discipline and commitment and I think it's only reasonable that my body should be an example of that.

I don't really know where I'm going with this blog - perhaps I should have stuck with Jodi's cats. I'm meeting with a nutritionist tonight and I'm hoping it's a positive experience. If anyone has any thoughts on change I'd love to hear them. I'm a sucker for inspirational stories. Especially ones about cats. Bean out.


Higgie said...

No, not Clogging, Bean... Blogging. Todd is the one that likes to clog, remember?

Anyhoo - I found a pic of you that I took in November and I tried to post it but was having issues. I would never describe you as overweight and I wanted to back up my words with proof.

Second - Stitch is sooooo ticked off right now. He's insulted that you called him baby bear. As their uncle, I would have hoped you would know the difference between the two cats.

Third - You are very hard on yourself. You have accomplished so much in your life. I would definitely describe you as disciplined and committed.

D - I most definitely think change is possible. What a depressing thought to believe one can't change. I know you certainly don't think that way. I've known countless people who have made changes. You saw cute cousin Becky at the family shindig over Christmas. She looks great and says she feels great. Also - I have a really amazing friend - mcf - that lost 60 pounds. I know her to be very committed. Hopefully she'll leave a comment about how she did it.

Eighteenth - look at me. I used to be a total nerd. Wait - yeah, maybe you're right that some things never change. DANG IT!

Lastly - I read a weight loss tip that makes so much sense to me. He lost a whole bunch of weight just by making his weekday dinners every Sunday evening. Every morning, he'd pull out a meal in a tupperware container and take a few healthy snacks between the meals. He lost a ton of weight. He said it was inconvenient at first - but when he saw the results, he didn't mind.

Finally, tell me how the nutritionist meeting went.

Redhoodoos said...

*Here's a neat story that was posted on my yahoo group that I'm a member of...
Good guys (and girls) sometimes finish last.
And sometimes, they don't mind one bit.
Just ask Sheila McNair.
Unlike the 457 folks who finished before her, McNair didn't get to
hear her name called when she crossed the finish line of Saturday's
Mississippi Blues Marathon.
The public address announcer was long gone.
So were the barricades that had lined the course. And the 1,400
runners who had come and gone. And all the spectators who had
gathered near the finish line since the race's 7 a.m. start.
But McNair, who once weighed 444 pounds and now is down to 179
pounds, didn't care. She was determined to complete her first
By the time the 45-year-old Jackson resident made the final turn
around 2:20 p.m. - some seven hours after her 26.2 mile trek began -
all that remained were a handful of supporters, arms interlocking,
forming a human finish line.
"I don't know if there was a dry eye on State Street," said John
Sewell, event spokesperson. "It was just as exciting watching her
finish as it was watching the winner. Her spirit and determination
personifies what a marathon is all about."
And for McNair, every bit of that determination was needed Saturday.
A little over halfway through the course, race officials tried to
convince her to stop.
"We had a seven-hour time limit on our course and we wanted to be
able to open all the roads back up by 2 o'clock," said Sewell.
McNair's response?
"I told them I wasn't quitting," McNair recalled Monday. "I'm not
fast, never have been fast, but I just wanted to complete it."
So McNair kept going. Running a little. Walking a lot. Determined
that this marathon wasn't going to end up like the first one she
attempted to complete in October in Chicago.
That race was halted by race officials after 3 1/2 hours because of
the heat and humidity.
"The Chicago race was supposed to be my coup de grace," said
McNair. "So after that, I got in this one and wanted it to be my coup
de grace."
But McNair thought that was coming to an end Saturday when law
enforcement officials approached.
"I just knew they were going to make me stop," said McNair. "Turns
out, they were just escorting me to make sure I got where I needed to
One of those police officers was Jessie McDonald, who McNair had
attended school with at Murrah.
"Jessie told me 'girl take your time,' " McNair said. "He was that
angel that I needed. That was all the incentive I needed. I had the
Hinds County Sheriff and JPD escorting me, blocking the traffic,
making sure I got where I needed to be. I almost felt like a
And for a brief moment Saturday, she was.
The human finish line that she was marching toward didn't last.
Instead, each of those interlocking arms ended up wrapped around
McNair in an emotional embrace.
"To see the joy on her face was just powerful," said Mark
Simpson. "Everybody was welled up with emotions. It was a fitting
completion to an incredible marathon."
For McNair, whose official time Saturday was 7 hours, 24 minutes
and 43 seconds, it ended a race that began long before Saturday.
Her journey began in 2003: the moment she looked at a family
reunion photograph of her and her grandson.
"When I looked at that picture, I told myself 'I can't go on like
this,' " said McNair, who had battled obesity since she was 12. "I
had to do something. Obesity runs in both sides of my family and my
mom died in 2001 due to diabetes. I didn't want to go that route. I
was overweight to the point where basically all I could do was go to
work and come home."
So McNair underwent gastric bypass surgery on May 3 of 2004. She
weighed 444 pounds that day. Three years and 265 pounds later, she
completed her first marathon.
It came just a year after she began in Marathon Makeovers, a
support group that prepares runners for the 26.2-mile race.
"If there is one word to describe her it is 'determined,' " said
Simpson, director of Marathon Makeover. "She came in last January
just able to walk a mile. But those race officials that wanted her to
step off the course were not going to stop her."
Not before she reached her five family members who proudly waited
for her at the finish line.
"When I got to the 25-mile mark, I wanted to cry because I was so
excited that I was almost there," said McNair. "But I didn't want
them to think anything was wrong with me."
But when she got to the finish line, McNair erupted, letting out a
scream as her eyes watered.
"This was personal for me," she said. "I knew I wasn't going to win
anything, but I was going to complete this marathon."

Bean said...

Great story. That's the kind of thing I need to remember. I also appreciate your comments but you suck at numbering the items on your list. I'm just sayin'.

The meeting with the nutritionist went well. Tomorrow we are go to hash out meal plan. In December I went on slimfast and healthy choice dinners and was consuming less than 1000 calories a day. The first week I lost 8 pounds, the rest of the month I gained 2. Obviously my metabolism shut down.

So we're creating something that's doable. I was thrilled that she said I can continue to eat bars and nutrition shakes. The fact that I don't cook needs to change but I rely on these meal replacements.

Right now I have two concerns - 1) lack of variety in my diet (I tend to find a few things I know i can eat and limit myself to them which increases chances of crashing) and 2) Patience. This is going to take months. I've committed myself to not stepping on the scale until February and just trust that i'm doing the right things.

All in all, I feel good. It feels different this time. It feels right. I just HAVE to stay focused.

Thanks for your words. Obviously your courage inspires me. I'm exciting to not be doing this alone. Maybe that's why this time feels different.

Give a shout out to Big Brother or Lady Bear or whatever your cat's name is this week.

Anonymous said...

Hello Brian,

Let's see, According to my calculations, you have been alive for 402 months. You have attempted change some 9,453 times. In short, this means that you have attempted this 23.52 times per month. Take away weekends and holidays and that number is bound to go up. Hope this doesn't depress you but I'm telling you that it beats the heckout of my one and only attempt to change and, sadly, I failed. My motto is "If at first you don't succeed, WHY try again?". Personally I'm really scared about this run but I'll do it even if I have to drive the car for you guys.


Anonymous said...

Okay, NOW it's getting really old. For the record; I only did clogging for a short two week period. Now to put that into perspective, it was only for an hour a day for 10 days or 10 hours total (one must practive for 11 hours to be considered for Riverdance). During that time I kicked a girl in the head and gave her a head concussion and I broke the arm of another girl. To this day I don't know how the girl broke her arm but I'm positive about the other girl with the head concussion because I still remember her eyes suddenly disappearing, her body jolting and her hair "poofing" like a feather pillow being blown apart when I did a round-house kick to her head. Plus the part about her grabing her head and me begging her not to tell her boyfriend.

MCF said...

Sadly, I have no magic plan that makes it easy to lose the weight. I did it using a wonderful appetite suppressant which also helped my energy level. Ultimately though, it came down to motivation to work out. I ran every day, watched my portions, and tried to avoid the really fatty foods (yes there was a day when I would skip out on the birthday bagels that seem to come up EVERY WEEK). I'm struggling a lot right now trying to get motivated. I think I blame a lot of it on not being able to take my pill but in the end it's just plain hard to get your butt out of bed to work out. Especially when it's so warm and cozy in there. Before I lost the weight I had gotten to the point that I was disgusted with my body and wanted to change. I'm getting to that point again. Something's got to change. If I can manage to stay healthy for more than a week, I think I'm going to get back into it this time. I'll keep ya posted.

Alicia said...

B-dawg, I'm with Red. You look great but I think that it's cool that you have a plan and that you are seeing a nutritionist and that you have a trainer. Good for you dude!