Monday, June 22, 2009

losing weight is like golf...

1. The lower score/weight is always better

2. Both are 90% mental 10% physical propositions

3. By their nature, both activities can be extremely frustrating, and extremely satisfying

4. I will never be as good at golf as Tiger Woods, nor will i ever marry a swedish supermodel.

Mrs. Tiger Woods, or why being good at golf is awesome.

Ok, so clearly im a golf fan and i have been watching alot of golf lately. It occurred to me that playing golf and losing weight are kind of similar. They say that golf is 90% mental and 10% physical. I kind of think that losing weight is that way too.

I like to keep the pipe dream that if i had the resources and the time, that i too could play pro golf. Once reailty sets in, I realize that i lack something that elite pro golfers have. Mental discipline. If you watch Tiger or (to a lesser extent) Phil Mickelson, you have to marvel that they are able to play their game at such a high level with 1,000 crazy/drunk people standing just feet away from them. The focus that must take boggles my mind. In the world of golf, the thing that seperates a good golfer from a great one is their head. Weight loss, in my opinion is kind of the same thing.

Rocco Mediate showing his focus.
Courtesy: Associated Press

I have had success before on various programs, but i have never had the fortitude to stick with them. I find one excuse or another to jump ship. My last attempt was actually pretty successful, i managed to lose 25-30 pounds but when i changed jobs, i lost the focus and gained every bit of it back.
For me, the hardest part of committing to change my lifestyle is mentally preparing for it. As i have said previously, i am lazy. For the most part i enjoy laziness, i enjoy just hanging out with my wife, watching tv or playing some video games or whatever. So, its difficult for me to just change gears and hit the treadmill or lift weights overnight. If i approach it with out really being 100% mentally committed, it will just have been a waste of time.

So, for those of you who are wondering what i am going to do to start to lose the weight, ill try to break it down for you. Feel free to chime in with suggestions, or concerns, i would like to hear both at this point.

The best success iv'e ever had is with a program called Body for Life. I followed the program pretty closely and ended up losing 25-30 pounds. I will be doing this again, although it will be slightly modified so as to keep my sanity. It was good for me because it was easy to integrate into my schedule. (Before i get too much farther into this i just want to let you know that this is the program that worked for me, im not trying to preach or sell this to anyone else. Also, im not getting paid for the advertising that is about to follow. )For those of you who aren't going to click the link above here's the promised breakdown:

4-5 small meals a day. The program uses a grazing mechanism that is supposed to help incrcease my metabolism be getting my body out of its "starvation" mode. The way i understand it, by eating only once or twice a day, like i do now, slows all the processes in my body. My body slows the metabolism and essentially goes into a conservative mode because it doesnt know when it will get food again. By "grazing" i can take my body out of this mode and hopefully get back to normal. Unfortunately, if you read the book or look at the website, Body for Life kind of seems like an advertisement vehicle for EAS products. Maybe its true, but i happen to like the EAS shakes and bars and i use them in the program as reccommended. This also adds to the convenience for me since the shakes and bars are very portable and actually tasty, for the most part.

Portion Control. Since you are eating 4-5 meals a day, your portions are going to be alot smaller. As a rule of thumb, a serving size of anything solid is the size of your open palm. (sorry for all these hand measurements.) Most liquids are measured in cups.

this is kind of the idea...

Varied Menu. What i like about this particular program is that the menu is pretty extensive. Those of you who know me might wonder why i care since i have the palette of a 6 year old, but its nice to know that if i ever want a lot of veggies, i can have them. However, it also works for me since i can still have a burger or whatever as long as i am careful about the size and what i put with the burger. If you want to see a complete list of foods you can click here. Now, all that being said, there are foods im not going to skimp on; cheese and peanutbutter being the two i can think of off the top of my head. The lowfat versions of both of these suck, so im not doin it. Caffiene. Im still having coffee and drinking the occasional soft drink. I have to stay awake at work somehow. There might be other things as well, but these two are my big ones.

One Free day a week. I think this one works in two ways. First, its supposed to shock your metabolism to keep things from becoming stagnant. By eating whatever you want and however much you want keeps your body a little freaked out and keeps it on its toes. The other way i think it works is by keeping you sane. Its nice to know that if i want to order a pizza on my free day and polish off a pint of icecream i can totally do that. The other thing about this is that foods that are usually "prohibited" are that much more rewarding since you are still following the program.

Atleast 30 minutes of exercise a day. This is one part of the program that i have modified in the past, as 30 minutes isnt enough to make me feel like i am doing enough. The Body for life exercise program is probably sufficient for people who don't have the time to spend in the gym, but since i have all morning to be there i tend to alot more than the minimums they say you can get away with. In general, my workouts usually start with 15 mins of cardio followed by weights and ab work, followed by 30 more minutes of cardio. All of you fitter people who have great workouts, i am willing to listen since i am always looking for fun workouts.

So there you have it. Sorry this turned into a much longer post than i had anticipated. I have to say though, i am really looking forward to getting rid of my doobs. (thats dude boobs for those of you who don't know.)

thats all for now.
P.S. i borrowed the above images. Please don't sue me Tiger.

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