Tuesday, December 13, 2011

This is not a good look for me

Certified for resale by FW&P
In my adult life, I have enjoyed defining myself as an athlete scraping the     ceiling of sub-elite status. For the past several years, this has been somewhat of a fib. Relative to satisfactory beginnings in the active realm, I have lately been described more often as having "performed well beyond my fitness level."

In 2012, I will turn 30. I have vowed to make an honest push to test my actual potential in this year, rather than to pray for a miracle every time I toe the line as I have for the majority of my 20s.

This blog will be a story of my struggle with accountability and undoubtedly frequent points of failure as well. I will attempt to speak to the every-man, including all of those who wage a silent war against their own failures of self-discipline. Rather than sharing vegan recipes, my readers (wife and mother), will find in-stead, peanut-gallery-esque ruminations upon the world working against me and the people from whom I draw inspiration.

In regard to the title of this blog, I might have named my quest after my self-selected spirit animal, the polar bear, but found hippopotamus descriptions to be more accurate. They usually follow the line of "encumbered by their substantial girth on land, the hipo...is surprisingly graceful in the water, and can be quite dangerous to..."
My first white-hot jewel of planification has been to cast off the weight which holds me back. This will be an endeavor both physical and figurative in my case.  In the coming months, I will need to release my long time goal of being the first elite athlete sponsored by a fast food chain. Also missing this specific cut will be my reputation for eating fat-laden burritos and fried chicken on long rides, and a well-known affinity for buffet-style recovery meals.

Just a few weeks ago, I made a deal with my wife, Betsy, to terminate my long affair with fast food in exchange for an iphone. This was a good start.

The thing that I am best at is justification, specifically self-justification. I have grown to explain a midnight binge at Taco Bell as "helping me to recover." Since these binges frequently follow a lapse in working out, I may have taken this a bit too far. To aid in my self-accountability, I have acquired a new friend:

I'd like to introduce you, reader, to My Fitness Pal app.

This bad boy keeps track of my exercise and dietary doings with a million-food catalog which does include the Denny's Grand Slamwich, which packs in over 1,000 calories a pop. At the end of each day, My..Pal lets me know exactly how I am progressing toward my goal weight with a little shaming tool that looks like this: 

I have been at the Pal  for two weeks and it has probably done more educating than anything else. It has been my mode in life to believe that if a little of something is good, then a lot of it will have to be proportionately better. In light of this, I now have a more realistic grasp of the direct effect of my binge/purge personality.

I'm satisfied with this start. In my next post, you can look forward to some special maths and a "hippo by the numbers" feature.


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