Old and Fat -or- why the ZMan needs to stop snacking

One would think that being able to run 50 miles would also mean being fit, thin and healthy - well lets check off just the 1st one there.

Last doctor checkup I was very happy to find after 4 years of running my 'good' cholesterol was finally reflecting my active lifestyle. However I was not so happy to discover the bad cholesterol had gone up and was over 200. Time to dig out my previous results I think. I will refrain from a spreadsheet as there's not quite enough numbers

          Total (under 200)    LDL[bad] (<130)   HDL[good] (>40)     Triglycerides (<150)
09/2000           193                    128                      34                              153
01/2003           180                    116                      35                              141
03/2006           184                    126                      37                              102
03/2009           211                    137                      47                              134

(I started running in March 2005 and hit marathon distance in May 2006)

03/2011 will be my next checkup and I really don't want to be on drugs - I'm seeing too many of my friends starting to take them because of health issues. Thankfully I'm not seeing anything yet but its probably best to be defensive here since I've really never bothered to much.

Weight wise I've mostly hovered around the 220-225 for as long as I can remember. I used to be real skinny (160??) till I went to university and discovered that I could eat whenever I liked and drink beer.

Running didn't have the effect on my weight I wanted it to which is a major disappointment to me. With a little bit of cutting back on sodas when I was at Microsoft I managed to lose a few pounds and then in 2006 when I was marathon training I managed to cut out snacking for a while and got under 210.

Fast forward to 50 mile training in the last year. Even with running 5 times a week and increasing my distances a lot there was no significant change. Then I went to England for Christmas and ate too much. In the past a few lbs of chip, bacon, turkey and chocolate fat would just disappear in January but not this time. In fact I suspect I may have run my 50 miler a pound or 2 over my heaviest.

After the 50 miler - back to 3 runs a week with shorter distances, several vacations with good food and in the blink of an eye I'm over 230. I'm pretty boring and predictable in my eating and we dont eat out often so I dont think there's been any major changes other than the trips.

And here we are today... I weighed in just over 235 and in the last couple of weeks I've been getting some leg issues when I run so, dear body, I'm taking the hint. As fast as I increase my working out my body gets older and slows down and now I'm at the point where running alone isn't even maintaining. Damn this getting old sucks.

To be honest, I know where most of my problem is - I snack too much. I'm home all day and its pretty easy for me to grab stuff that's not good for me and eat way too much of it. It's not just chocolate I have no will power over. I can happily eat a whole bag of goldfish in a day convincing myself that since they are baked they are not so bad (840 calories, 30g fat). I know I need to eat more fruit snack. Odd thing is I actually enjoy fruit - I just prefer good old refined sugar more ;-)

Several of my friends have been using http://sparkpeople.com to track their intake so J convinced me to sign up there. It will hopefully let me know where I'm going wrong. I am already so embarrassed by yesterdays snack total of 1275 calories (550 of those were my once a week beer night so lets amortize that out eh?) that I've not got up and eaten anything this morning for fear I will have to admit it to the internet. Thankfully some of those snacks were finishing up bad leftovers from a weekend party and there is no more of that left. Unlike most people I respond well to shame and guilt so feel free to force me to publicly tell you my weight at any time.

I've often thought the 'Shame/blackmail' diet would work for a certain percentage of people. It works like this: You sign up and give me $1000 and let me take unflattering photographs of you in your underwear. If you lose the required weight I return 80% of the money to you along with the original pictures. If you don't lose the weight I start spending the money and sending you pictures of all the cool stuff I do with it. When the money runs out I put your bad photo on the internet for strangers to mock. Actually that would probably only work for me - maybe I should get J to take a horrible picture of me tonight as a threat.

I need to do something other than running too so we decided to go with last years cool thing and do 100 push ups for starters. I often wonder how many of my friends ever finished that program because though I remember the initial bragging I dont remember anyone bragging about doing 100 and I promise that when I do it you will all know about it!

The plan is to get down to 200lb for my double marathon in November because seriously nobody should be carrying the equivalent of a small child when they run 50+ miles. Then 180lb by my doctor checkup in March in the hope that will also help out the cholesterol. 180 (well 178) would just about scrape me into a 'normal' BMI too. Plus I'd be able to fit into my prom dress.... oh is that TMI?

Published 29 July 2010 09:01 AM by zman
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