I had what I thought to be a brilliant plan—to grow old and fat. But the sad fact—what took me some time to realize—is that if you grow fat, you almost certainly won’t grow old. Now, I am not afraid of death. I just don’t want to die, it’s way too early for that shit.
To start from the beginning, last fall when I still lived in Chicago I decided to go see a doctor. At 35 I was at a ripe age to start doing annual physicals—something people should do every now and then to find out whether they’re perfectly healthy or whether something should be fixed.
I felt fine. Didn’t have a complaint in the world, but I still went.
My cholesterol—bad cholesterol—was sky high, and the good one way too low.
My blood pressure was sky high, even dangerously high.
My vitamin D levels were inexistent. Not surprising as I rarely saw the sun, but nevertheless.
And I was way too fat. Guess the first part of my master plan had worked great.
I was prescribed blood pressure medicine, cholesterol medicine, vitamin D, and the doc told me to take vitamin B supercomplex to help me get some foliates which I was lacking due to a genetic issue that doesn’t let my body to convert folic acid into foliates. And also fish oil, because being a meat eater had made me lacking the good cholesterol that you can find in fish.
And, most importantly, I was told to exercise. At least 45 minutes per day, at least five days a week.
So, I started. To eat healthy—more salads, more fish, more protein; less fat, less bad cholesterol, and I cut beer out of my diet almost completely. I also started to exercise—to take long intensive walks, three miles a day five days a week.
The only downside was, I still didn’t take it seriously enough—and when I moved to California in December I almost completely stopped working on myself. Partly because during the road trip it was difficult, but mostly probably because I had had enough and I wanted a burger, French fries and a fucking steak. I even check about Nutrisystem diet and different places to buy it, but still I didn’t actually start it.
When I found a new doctor here in January and went to him to renew my blood pressure medicine prescription on January 30, I weighed 231 pounds. That’s 105 kg (or 16.5 stone) for those who don’t speak American. I was officially obese, or, in plain old English fat as fuck.
So the new doctor said pretty much everything the doc in Chicago had. Told me to exercise, eat less, eat less fat and bad cholesterol, etc, etc. But he also said something I don’t remember my old doc having said—I was on a sure-as-hell pathway to diabetes, ONLY that at this point it’s still reversible. If I get a fucking hold of myself, that is.
Today is May 9 and I weigh 190 lbs (86 kg, 13.5 stone). I can proudly say that in three months and ten days I have lost 40 pounds. I am seven pounds away from my ideal weight. My clothes are too big for me and I can’t even count the extra holes I’ve had to punch into my belts. My blood pressure is still high though—or ridiculously low when I’m at 6,000 feet in the mountains—but that is something that might not correct itself at all. I’m going to get a blood test at the end of May to see about my cholesterol levels and all that shit. But I feel great—and I feel a lot better than I used to. Imagine that.
But all that didn’t come on its own. It took (and still takes) hard work, dedication, persistency, and most importantly, enduring lengthy periods of hunger and missing all the good fatty stuff that tastes so fucking good it makes me cry.
When I restarted my exercise regime, I again resorted to walking only. We have this nice little gym here that has a couple of treadmills and some weight-lifting equipment, so I started walking on the treadmill for at least half an hour a day. After a while, I also took up weight lifting. And after a while, I decided that walking is boring—it’s much quicker to run.
Half-a-mile. A mile. 1.2 miles. One and a half. 1.7. 1.8. Two miles. 2.2. Two and a half. 2.8. Three miles. Four miles.
Then the speed. 5 mph. 5.3 mph. 5.5. Six. 6.3. Six and a half miles an hour.
Six and a half is my current normal running speed, although sometimes I do a portion in 6.8. Currently, I try to run at least 2.5 miles every day, sometimes three, sometimes more. But 2.5-3 miles a day at 6.5 miles an hour is an excellent exercise, I’ve come to learn. Plus the weight lifting I train my upper body with. I haven’t seen my arm and chest muscles since my late teens—and now they’re again there!
I eat a hearty breakfast. Usually turkey ham (0% fat) or smoked salmon or herring (some fat, but that’s the good fat that gives you the good cholesterol). Cottage cheese (0% fat). Tomatoes or cucumbers. Coffee.
Before workout I either eat a banana or, if we got smoothie in the refrigerator, that. The good thing about smoothies is you can add protein powder to it, so you get both your carbs and the first kick of protein, too.
After workout I usually eat a protein shake—I say shake, but it’s usually about 20-30 grams of whey protein mixed in a glass of water.
If I train before breakfast, I get most of my protein from that. If I train after breakfast, I either have the shake, a protein bar, or a little of both. Or beef jerky—why not, it tastes good, has almost zero fat, but is a good source of protein.
So, a hearty breakfast. And then comes the hard part—the next meal is the next breakfast.
During the day I drink a lot of water. That keeps my stomach full. When I work, my mind stays easily off food. When I don’t, well… Not so easily. But I don’t fold.
Weekends I eat more—usually breakfast and lunch. Nothing after 2 PM though—or, if both the breakfast and the lunch are late, after 4 PM. Ice water only after that.
I got a friend, Igor, who’s a dedicated bodybuilder. He has been great help with my diet, exercise and healthy living regime, and to whom I’m very grateful. He told me I should have one cheat meal a week—to cheat the digestion to speed up. Sometimes I do that—an occasional steak, maybe, or a burger perhaps. But mostly I don’t—simply because I enjoy seeing those numbers on the scale to drop like rocks after a landslide.
On vacation I usually try, but not too hard. Well, at least I don’t have any food after 2-3 PM. Except for beer—it’s not a vacation if I don’t drink beer. Besides, during my normal regime I don’t drink any alcohol at all, so gotta make up for that!
So there we are. One meal a day. Lots of water. No bad fat, no bad cholesterol, no bad carbs, no booze. Lots of exercise, the more the better. And lots of dedication. Visit musclekiss.com to see other ways of sculpting your body.
Forty pounds lighter—and probably healthier and happier.
I’m so fucking proud of myself. I look like a young John McClane, ready to save the world from East German terrorists. If you don’t mind me saying so myself.
Of course, when I get to my ideal weight, I’m going to start eating a little more. To keep my weight normal, not losing it any more. I fully realize that weight is a fluctuating thing and I will never retain the same weight throughout my life. And I also realize pumping iron will make me heavier, because muscles weigh more than fat—but as long as it’s John McClane who’s looking at me from the mirror and not John Candy (God rest his soul), I’m happy.
Here’s to the new plan. To grow old, but still be able to save the world when I’m, say, 60. Or 80. At 100 I would already be too lazy to give a shit.