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  • caldun09

My lifetime diet challenge

Updated: Dec 4, 2020

During various stages of my life I have reflected on my lifestyle and examine how I am progressing, health wise ,in life.

During my teaching career I definitely was not focussed on keeping fit and watching my diet. I ate every treat that arrived in school irrespective of the number of calories. My weight was on the high side and the exercise was on the low scale.

In my final year before retiring I think life was just party central with far too many treats.

Yours truly devoured them all with relish. I paid the price with my good friend ,the scales, which just would not play ball with me.

Now in retirement it was the time to reboot my life with a new more spartan living . My first stop was my local doc. I would not have been a regular visitor to this particular quarter up till now.

He recommended some lifestyle changes which were totally agreed with by me and by the household health department.This included less eating and upping my exercise routine.

Now I have regular 6 monthly check- ups to ensure that the blood pressure etc. are at some kind of normal level for my age. I exercise more regularly and definitely eat better and in smaller portions.

I am generally recommended by my doc to continue my present regime, to keep walking and to keep the weight down. This latter problem is one that has bedevilled me all my life. It is on a constant up and down yo yo and I am losing the yo yo battle.

I was making good enough progress until one of my NCT visits was post-Christmas. When the results came back my doc was in a state of shock with my blood sugar levels, my blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

I then told him about all the Christmas festivities. I was honest with him and myself when I told him the amount of ham, cakes ,trifle, chocolates, vino. etc I had consumed over the festive season. You name it I had it that Christmas. He put me on a very strict diet, and I was to return after 6 weeks.

I duly returned and things were at a more normal level.

In retirement I have more time to spare and so I was duly enrolled by household management in a Happy Heart course with the Happy Pear boys in Greystones. My newer regime was about to begin with this 8-week course.

We started with a weigh in and had our blood pressure and cholesterol checked by a nurse .Next we had motivation talks on how we would get through the 2 months course.

We had to keep a daily food diary and had to present this each week. I must admit I found that first week tough and I lied a little. I had another checker, and this was beyond cheating. It was that dreaded scales. That told me the true story of my errand ways.

It was time to cop on to myself and take this course more seriously, which I did.

In week two I stuck rigidly with the regime of exercise and dieting. I also started reading the China Study which really spurred me on to greater efforts.

I was quite amazed at how my stamina and alertness were improving with each passing day. We were introduced to a different vegetarian regime of cooking which I much enjoyed.

At the end of 8 weeks strict dieting and increased exercise regime my cholesterol had dropped to 4.6 and I had shed 13 pounds. I was very proud of my achievements. I pledged to myself that I would continue this healthy regime for life.

Alas, I was weak willed at times over the years. The bag of milky moos made a re-appearance in the car. Slices of pear and almond tart with ice cream became a regular feature. The tasty yummy Magnums were scoffed fairly regularly. My old enemies suddenly became best friends again.

But sure , who cares? No one saw me eating these and they only had a few calories each.

Regrettably my public enemy number one in the form of a scales told the truth and my weight was now up at pre–Happy Heart days. The auld waist band was rapidly expanding. An extra hole had to be punched in the belt. The distance I was walking lessened . The weekend glass of wine was now accompanied by crackers and cheese.

But cometh the hour, cometh the man and cometh the pandemic. It was time for some new resolutions.

Coffee shops were closed so out went the cappuccino and scone with the accompanying butter, cream and jam.

Out went the vino and the crackers and cheese and a healthier regime was beckoning.

The regular 11 o clock and 4 o clock snacks were to be no more. Water became the new vino H2O Sauvignon Blanc.To this was added a fresh slice of lemon for added zest.

Next step was the installation of my 10000-step app ,my spy in my pocket. I must say I reacted well to this and am achieving my 10000-step daily total on a regular basis.

Operation fitness 2020 was started and I was determined that the outcome would be good.

Breakfast was organised the night before and had to be rigidly adhered to. All treats were banished ,even my favourite Magnums. Scones ,cupcakes, tarts would be banished for the duration of this present spartan regime.

The big fry up of the 3 sausages, 3 rashers, black and white pudding and dippy egg and chips are relegated to long weekend lunches. At dinner there would be no more lumps of butter with the spuds.

And now after 6 months I stand up on my public enemy and I could bend down and hug it. It shows me a figure that tells me I have lost one stone weight since March .It was a real Operation Transformation moment for me personally.

So now , once again, I say to hell with cakes, biscuits, tarts, magnums , the vino and crackers and cheese.

I make a solemn pledge to myself for the umpteenth time to continue my spartan regime with my hunger pangs and 10001 steps a day

I wonder when the next lapse will be!

Christmas is coming and the goose is getting fat.

Will yours truly be getting Fat? I hope not but as they say ,Life’s for living, so ,cheers to you all.

Mick O Callaghan

14/11/2020

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