27 February 2007
Do you know Karen Carpenter's story?
I saw the movie, so that makes me an expert, right?
Karen starved herself to death. Like so many people we see during war or famine, her body was deprived of what it needed. Karen's dieting stopped her heart.
Some wonderful music stopped too.
Years ago we based our EMS helicopter at a hospital.
Initially the hospital found space for us on the same floor where they were treating anorexic teenage girls. It was an uncomfortable situation for all concerned...
We couldn't even pop popcorn in our room, because it rightfully alarmed the program supervisors. We were soon moved to different quarters.
But it was horrifying to see the shape some of those little girls were in, and hear stories of what they would do to try to keep from eating. It's a mental disease.
Then you have the other side of the coin... the morbidly obese.
It's also a mental disease... an addiction, every bit as powerful as most recreational drugs.
It damages the heart in a different way, and leads to lots of other problems.
I love to eat.
I've fought being overweight all my life.
If I don't pay close attention to my diet, I settle at a weight about 20 pounds above what I consider ideal. (I'm a little over 5' 9" tall, and on 1 January, I weighed 206 pounds.)
Last fall, I had the displeasure of using a bathroom that had a mirrored shower stall.
While conducting my business there, I took a close look at myself in the mirror.
(I know... it's an ugly visual, isn't it?)
And that's exactly my point. But it's not just my appearance...
I have to pass an annual flight physical. My overall health is vital to my livelihood.
Heart, kidneys, eyes, knees and other joints...
almost everything about your body is adversely affected when you are overweight.
So I decided it was time to quit thinkin'/talkin' about it, and get serious.
I made the New Year's resolution I've made in past years...
but this time I shared my resolution with friends, and made a promise-
I'm gonna lose a pound a week until I reach 188 pounds... a loss of 18 pounds.
Sara Jean doesn't like it when I lose weight.
The first place you notice my weight loss is in my face. I get hollow cheeks, like Abraham Lincoln. The loss of fat in my face also makes me look tired.
She also dislikes hugging me when I lose weight... she likes meat on my bones.
But turning 60 was a milestone for me in many ways. I want to establish habits that will make it easier to better control my health. I'd like to be healthy when I reach 85.
So, it's "Eat less, and exercise."
And here's the plan:
For the rest of my life, I'm gonna have a weekly weigh-in on Saturday.
I'm gonna reach my target weight, then maintain it. If I find I've gained a pound or two, I'll lose it immediately by closing my pie-hole and exercising more.
I'm in the 9th week of my diet, and I've lost 8 pounds. I'm a pound behind schedule.
Moving Big Bubba to Arizona, then coming home to a big Valentine's Day dinner was a speed-bump to my plan. But it proves my point...
I know where I am, I know where I want to be, and I know how to get there.
So am I.
I'll keep ya posted.