I’m not quite 12 weeks into an intense weight/exercise training regimen…and significantly modified diet.

36 pounds gone. Significant increase in endurance and muscle tone. I don’t have any jeans that are small enough to fit properly (I reckon I need a 40 about now…haven’t worn that size since 1988 or so).

I’ve learned a few things along the way…

1) The effort required to train a 50+ year old body to the level of a 20-year old athlete is significant…hard labor…construction-like…old-fashioned farm-toil effort…along the same level of effort that ensured my ancestors’ average life-span was something like 45…this seems a mixed bag. To die young in great (worn out) shape or die older of some “preventable” (by dying younger methinks) old-age malady. Ahh. Choices.

2) Jack-in-the-Box is offering their Jumbo Jack, fries, TWO tacos (deep fried of course), and a drink for $3.99. The best satisfactory and reasonably healthy salad I can find at a fast food place usually exceeds $5.99 not including a drink. No wonder we’re fat.

3) Strawberries taste sweet, and mysteriously, have very few calories. I’m not quite sure I believe the numbers. They can satisfy cravings and a sweet-tooth.

$4 worth of strawberries.

4) It is easily possible for one man to eat $100 worth of strawberries in a month. In moderation. Sigh.

Four bucks worth in the pic…tasty. Sweet. Satisfying. Only 60 calories.

A serving of olives?

5) “They” often to make a food appear more healthy by listing its serving size in some impossibly, stupid portion. A serving size of olives, for instance, is 3 olives.

Another healthy treat…for some reason the portion size is listed as THREE olives (15 calories)

6) The federal dietary guidelines? Yanno…the USDA…that massive bureaucracy that sucks down billions in order to tell us how/what to eat? The food pyramid? School lunches? Institutional nutrition? Yeah, all bunk. You eat like that you’ll be fat, sick, have no energy, and die young.

Sort of makes ya wonder what their goal is, yes?

7) Federal sodium/salt standards. Yeah, ignore them too.

8) All that dietary cholesterol stuff they (docs/feds/insurance) are pushing? Utter bunk. No science behind it. Probably one of the reasons for the obesity and diabetic “epidemics” today. There’s not even any verified science behind the BLOOD levels they are pushing. Oh, the dietary fat standards are pure bunk too.

But that’s the standard…ain’t it? It is…well…because it is…and a lot of folks just haven’t quite comprehended what “mandatory” can mean yet (how about we take $6000 extra out of your pay if ya can’t meet it?). It’s coming soon to you too…unless they burn the entire thing down that is.

I’m hoping for a firestorm personally…the question is whether I’ll be bankrupt or dead before it starts.

9) My medical insurance company’s job…and also my doctor’s job…has shit to do with health and wellness. It’s not even a consideration. Their job is to take in as much money as possible, and pay out as little as they can. They are getting better at it. The docs, insurance, and drug companies often work against each other for best advantage. The patient’s care is what suffers.

10) My employer is much like the federal government when they dabble in health care. All they do is compromise the quality and access to it, make it more expensive, and degrade its usefulness in the future. But, and I guess this makes it all right…they tell me it’s for my own good AND force me to sign a form that says it’s “voluntary”.

And as a bonus they like to bring us pizza and donuts…and one of the few vending machines that works on our campus serves ICE-CREAM bars! Also, I can get a chicken-fried steak and gravy AND fries for the price of a banana, an apple, and an expired yogurt at our cafeteria…well, except they’re usually out of fresh fruit.

11) What works? Push yourself hard. Turn it up to eleven. Tell lots of folks to “fuck off” (including your doctor). Beware nutrition guidelines AND labels…they are inaccurate or outright lies in some cases.

12) Eat lots of protein. Work till ya hurt. Then eat some more protein and work some more.

More later…as I attempt to fix…in mere months…what I took years to fuck up.

(the trouble is…you think you have time…)

I’ll see you on the road.

You can read more about my fitness journey here.

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