Saturday, February 03, 2007

Your Health and Your Business by Walt Barrett

My personal battle with the scale
I know this is supposed to be a business blog, but I think this is very important, and concerns the operation of any business that is going to be successful, and it also concerns your personal welfare. It is very difficult to do anything at all in life if you don’t feel well. So, please stay with me, and please read what I have to say.
In 1960 I was twenty-seven years old, six feet tall, and weighed 155 pounds. I had a thirty-inch waist. I may have been a little too thin then, but I had a very active job at the time that burned up a great deal of energy. I felt like a million bucks, and was looking very fit at the time, if I do say so myself.
Now, moving forward to January first 2007, the time when we all make the resolutions we usually never keep, I was seventy-three years old, and feeling it, still six feet tall, and weighed 240 pounds with a 44 inch waist! In 46 years I had gained eighty-five pounds, a pot belly, and breasts! Believe me I was really starting to feel it! If you walk around every day carrying an eighty-five pound package on your back you really have to notice it, especially on a flight of stairs. So besides being worn out easily, I also have the nasty side effect of high blood pressure and have to take the pills, which are no bargain either because they have unpleasant side effects too.
Well not being totally stupid, I finally decided to get serious about losing weight. I won’t keep you in suspense, and will tell you that in five weeks I have already lost fourteen pounds, and could have lost more, but Nancy and I had a big wedding anniversary (fifty-four years) in January, and there were several celebrations with friends. Never the less, I think I did well compared to my past performances in the weight loss area. Can you say disaster?
What makes me think I can succeed this time? The answer is that I am using the same tactic I used to quit smoking in 1998, and have never had a single smoke of anything since including cigarettes, cigars, or a pipe. I told myself that if I didn't stop smoking I was going to die a premature and ugly death. It worked because I was already starting to feel the effects from smoking, and it was not difficult to see where it was heading. Now, I have the same attitude again about losing weight. I am telling myself that I’m going to die soon enough as it is so why not try to buy a little more time, and also feel better, and look better all in the bargain? My clothes fit better already!
Now we have all seen a million schemes on TV about losing weight. Personally, I think many of them are dangerous so I discounted any pills, herbs, or drugs that claimed to accelerate weight loss. Actually, the art of losing weight is just common sense. There is an old saying in the computer business, and I don’t know who first said it, but is goes “Garbage in, Garbage out.” Well in the weight loss science my theme is “Calories in, pounds on, calories out, pounds off” I would at this point caution you that it might be wise to consult with a physician before starting any weight loss program if you have health concerns. Since I started my own program I have not had any chance to get any real exercise, but have still lost fourteen pounds in five weeks. Imagine what I can do when I start my walking, and mountain bike riding as soon as the weather lets up a bit.
I have been counting the calories for every single ounce of food or beverage that I consume. There is no magic trick to that. I have been trying to stay under 1500 calories a day. I have also been very careful about salt and sugar intake. I know this is difficult. My wife Nancy is on the program too. We read the labels on every food package or can, and on every beverage we drink. Speaking of drinking, we have cut that down to one small glass of wine at dinner. This is hard for me because I like to drink! We also stay away from fatty foods and high sodium foods. We find it convenient at times to buy the diet frozen dinners at the super market but Nancy is great at making diet meals on her own. The Frozen diet dinners have vastly improved in recent years if you feel the need to use them. They are excellent if you don’t want to count calories at dinnertime because they do it for you. My advice to you if you are really serious about weight loss is to learn more about the calories and chemicals that are in the foods that you are going to put into your body. Check what the label on the frozen dinners says about calories, sodium and other contents etc.
The main thing is to count all the calories that you take in every day, and stay with it. Check the suggested intake that matches your height, age, and framework. Check with your doctor. Remember that excess weight can cause heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and a number of other serious illnesses. If you are overweight like me, it’s time to do something about it if you want to live longer, and feel better. Please don’t spend a lot of money on weight loss schemes because they are just like get rich quick schemes. Most of the time they don’t work!
Calorie counting is only difficult for the first few days, but gets easier as you go along. If you slip up, don’t despair; eat less at the next meal to make up for it. Don’t rob yourself of a lot of good years ahead; lose weight and start feeling better immediately! You have to stick with it! If you are serious, there is help here click it!
I will write further on my progress in the weeks, and months to come. I feel that it will take me a year for me to meet my goal.
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