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One Meal A Day

August 9, 2017


4.5 months ago I was just fine.

But then, at the Spring Solstice, a 61.5 year old blood tube decided it’s inadequate middle layer had performed as long as it could: it blew, the tube blew, part of my brain was flooded and I lost (only) balance.

It was back in 10 days.

But in the 100 hours in Yale New Haven Hospital it was clear that my blood pressure was too high, and that I had gained about 5 pounds a year for a bunch of years since I had lost 1/3 of myself 10 years ago;“why-am-i-soft-in-the-middle-now-why-am-i-soft-in-the-middle-when-the-rest-of-my-life-is-so-hard”-–-paul-simon/ putting about 2/5 of the 1/3 I had lost back. Not good.

Entitlement is the evil twin of success. I had controlled what controlled me: fat. So with that “victory” I grazed for 9 years. I knew there was no “win” – that there is only struggle. But I limited that struggle to relentless working out, and not eating crap. But I ate too much not crap. Through the fat creep I worked out, at least an hour a day, at least 5 days a week. So I was fat and fit.

But that blood pipe was not.

The larding up danced with the now age-increased blood pressure to blow this tube out. The hyper vigilance of Yale Hospital’s Chief of Neurology and her flock of physicians determined that I had no history of, and no existing, and no future of, veinious malfornation – after lots of hours viewing by many people of many (many) tests. However the first test of my weight was not unexpected but it did set a directive. Not from my doctors: From me. To me.

I was determined that amid the absence of balance that I would get that lard off me, but unlike a decade ago, I was working out more, not less. A decade ago, my radical methodology curtailed my available energy. I could not accept that today – my twin enemy to my lard lard was my blood pressure. I wanted to reduce that elevated pressure, and kicking it every day in the barn helped: recumbent, bow flex, and until I broke it, the elliptical. Instead of at least an hour it was an hour and a half, instead of 5 or 6 days it was 6 or 7 days a week. I have missed 6 days of exercise in 14 weeks, all due to business.

But that extra work out just meant a pound or 2 a month off if I ate as before. Defendable, but not enough.

There were evils in my eating. I binged Triscuits. I often had calorie laced skim milk and juice. Sometimes butter. And I had desert. Those went. But that reduction in scope, maybe, nailed another pound a month and I needed to lose scores of pounds. Scores of months would not cut it.

Since I dropped the 1/3 a decade ago, I yet grazed and lunched at a minimal level. The mouth toss here, the cookie for lunch (total). (I never ate breakfast). So that ended. I have had perhaps 10 lunches in those 14 weeks since the event: all due to social necessity.

And, voila: the One Meal A Day routine. But more than just eating once a day: a 23 hour fast every day. Food freeze out. Sacrifice. But not nuts.

My diagnosis saw no issue with drinking, so once or thrice a week I drank around 500 calories of booze, but I lessened salt without urging, and ate more vegetables upon another doctor’s urging (diuretic impact). Although it was fine, coffee went away: I needed no monkeys riding my back.

In the isolated daily meal I was careful: not junk (less or no: fried, sugar, empty carbs, butter) – but it was not measured, calculated, obsessed over – the meal was enjoyed.

If I had one full real meal it could barely reach 2,000 calories and often less without desert or fluids with calories. If I was burning 500 calories a day, that meant a net 1,500 calories were eaten a day, max. This regime kills over 1,000 net calories a day from the 2,500 daily calories I need to maintain my weight, fat or less fat. This meant losing over 2 pounds a week, and, duh, I am down over 30 pounds in 14 weeks, and will kill 20 more.

An interesting consequence that my heart rate was 60-70 beats per minute as tested a jillion times in the hospital. Now it’s around 55 beats per minute, often lower…

Did the added work and less food reduce pressure? Sure: over 3 months crushing it, I went from 150-160 to 130-140 in the early AM – normal, but not normal when the up fluctuation during the rest of the day sent it over 160 without med’s. I learned that a normal morning pressure is inoperative once your old man upside pressure is revealed later in the day.

So I failed.

So I take med’s.

As I write this I do a one week a year special edition: vacation.

Eating is a joy, and part of my 7 days off involves diving into great grub 3 times a day. But I try amplify to work out to over 1,500 calories a day, tripling my workout schedule, because, well, I eat like a (hungry) pig. It has worked in the past: no gain, but this year, I am a little more careful. Let’s see if this works.

Like everything else.

I guess I am a little more careful for the rest of what life is left…

10 Comments leave one →
  1. Penny Maher permalink
    August 9, 2017 11:58 am

    Dearest Duo, one big meal a day is not the best regimen for our aging bodies! It does sound like you have aimed your food choices in a good direction though. Here’s what has worked in our house (designed by you), something for breakfast, yogurt + a bit of granola or a hard boiled egg, half a sandwich at lunch, or a small salad, salad and fish or chicken at dinner. Snacks limited to cashews or almonds or one piece of dark chocolate, drink lots of water. I lost about 30 lbs in the past 15 months this way. I do yoga or Zumba five days a week. I meditate, it’s good for the blood pressure.
    Take care of yourself,

    • August 10, 2017 7:18 am

      Oh yes: the remedy is not optimal objectively: but it works for me: my follow-up neuro doc declared “you inoculated yourself!” By all that exercise, but more the rapidity is necessary, but most the kamikaze nature is galvanizing…

  2. August 11, 2017 10:56 am

    Your post makes me sad. If only you would contact Dr. Allyson Mendelson in Farmington or Patrick Moore (he was a nutritional consultant at Yale New Haven) they have realistic methods of lifestyle changes that would teach a lot about calm transitions that do not depend upon excessive exercise. My only exercise was yoga and I lost 40 lb in about 5 months without trying. The change in what I ate gave me the energy of a 20 yr old, my arthritis went away, and I slept like a baby. Plenty of butter, no sugar. No brain fog. The same plan our Olympic athletes use. The approach is called Maximized Living. It is possible there is a practitioner in New Haven.

  3. Beverly Skiles permalink
    August 11, 2017 11:50 am

    I’m glad things are better. Congratulation on Your weight loss journey.

  4. December 7, 2017 2:32 pm

    approaching 6 months: down 40, 8.8 belt notches. I still need to kill 15#, but I am within 1/2″ of my lowest dimension since marriage where I was about 20# lighter than I am now: so I am denser..

  5. December 27, 2017 2:33 pm

    I just discovered I am not alone: “intermittent fasting” is a thing:

  6. April 10, 2018 8:33 am

    Now 9in loss, a decade of LB’s to go

  7. November 14, 2018 12:24 pm

    It is a very nice article it has all information thank you it was helpful for me.


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