Changing my lifestyle has been high on my priority list for a full year now. I’m not talking about my gay lifestyle, which doesn’t work that way anyhow. I’m talking about aspects of my life over which I do have a fair degree of control: diet and exercise.
I’m still kinda sorta loosely on Weight Watchers. Mostly. When I’m being good and avoiding stuff I shouldn’t eat, I religiously track all my food and keep up with my points allowance. I do good most of the time, eating healthy stuff all day and blowing it a little right before bed most nights. My points allowance can handle my nightly slip ups. It’s the bigger binges that really mess me up.
Take this weekend. My partner jumped from an airplane. He raised money for Extra Special People and the jump was his reward. We arrived at the festive jump site at 2:30. The weather was perfect–for jumping, but a little hot for just standing around waiting to jump. I paid ten dollars for twelve tickets. I got cotton candy for one ticket, a hamburger for two tickets, a snow cone for another ticket, five pieces of pizza (at one ticket each), a Pepsi for one ticket, and because they were such a bargain, another hamburger. My partner ate two pieces of pizza and drank half the Pepsi. The rest was for me. I eat when I’m nervous.
It was a long afternoon. At 6:00, he finally got to jump. He enjoyed it and says he’ll do it again next year. We got some great pictures, and the sky diving team made a video tape for him that’s pretty cool. For me, just thinking about the plane ride up is enough to induce a panic attack. My bucket list is mostly stuff I want to eat before I die. Jumping out of planes runs contrary to my desire to live long enough to sample every yummy gooey dessert on the planet.
After the jump, we went to Carraba’s for diner. Yeah, I know. I was already stuffed. But eating out after the jump had always been the plan. Having spent most the day in the sun, I quickly sucked down two frozen margaritas. Brain freeze. Buzz. Deep fried zucchini appetizer with their seafood special (salmon, shrimp, scallops, and lobster ravioli) and a giant honking piece of yummy gooey chocolate cake just for me for dessert. Sugar coma.
The next morning, my weight was ten pounds heavier than it had been the day before. I no longer try to figure out how many points a bad night cost me. I just pull a number out of thin air and enter it. Bingefest, 50 points. Hell, that’s not enough. The cake alone was probably 35.
My exercise routine has suffered, too. Between the new furniture, carpet installation, and four different days when I worked in the yard instead of going for a run, my activity level is way down. I missed one of my strength training sessions and had to skip centergy, too. I’ve hardly run at all.
I keep telling myself that in the long run, as long as I’m good (eat right and exercise) more often than I’m not, it’s all good. But that’s really not true. One night of bad can undo a week’s worth of good–or more. The scale has proven that to me time and time again. I’ve lost these last ten pounds fifteen or twenty times now. Sooner or later, one of them will stick.
Thinking about the long run is what gets me in trouble. I imagine a buff but unhappy me coming home from my day at the gym for yet another dinner of grilled chicken, brown rice, and broccoli and panic sets in. I don’t want to live in a world without fried chicken, pizza, sugary baked goods, and premium ice cream (the real stuff, not the fat-free crap). The thought makes me want to eat myself to death at the nearest buffet.
But I don’t. I head to the gym for another thirty-minute torture session with my trainer. And then I’ll enjoy a wonderful dinner of grilled chicken, brown rice, and pineapple (we’re changing things up a little). In the long run, we’ll still be hanging out together here in…
My Glass House