Monday, April 19, 2010

Monday April 19th, 2010 - Day 7 of 10

No gym today. I'm not at all sore, but I think I was still feeling heat stroke this morning. I feel fine now so I will either go on another bike ride with the emphasis of staying cool or I'll go to the gym and do the same. I don't know if heat stroke makes you more susceptible to another heat stroke, but I'm not taking that chance. I really felt like crap yesterday.

Last week Monday I made the commitment to lose 10 pounds in ten days. I was a disappointing 331. I am now 323 with two days to go. I will make the 10/10 challenge. Then I hope to improve on that and lose 15 more pounds by May 22nd, the day of my mom's birthday bash. All I have done is watch my calories and increased my exercise.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sunday April 18th, 2010 - Heatstroke

Friday was a good day. I started out the day with an early trip to the gym. Then I went and picked up my mom and went back to the gym. I know. Pretty boring. Saturday I ran errands.

Today was glorious outside so I went for a ride to downtown Denver and back. I went by myself so I just took it easy and enjoyed the ride. I was pacing myself so I could make it back. There were a lot of riders today, but not so many that it interfered with my ride.

When I took my break downtown I met this young local band that had just played the night before at the Gothic. Pretty good gig. They had their makeup on and seemed a little aloof, but i struck up a conversation and it turns out that they were very polite and engaged in our conversation. They were there waiting for a photo shoot. The band's name was Bad. They have a website at . We had exchanged email and so forth because they wanted to see my dad's work. I listened to their MP3's on their site and they are pretty damn good.

The ride back was exhausting and hot. When I got home I was sweaty and a little nauseous. Cheri and I had to go to the artwork storage and take photos of these three beautiful Plexiglas and film strip pieces we own. The Smithsonian wants to take a closer look because they want to acquire more art that is connected to my dad's installation "Shutter Interface." They already have the four projector installation up and running full time. By the time we were done I was really feeling odd. Spacey and more nauseous. I had drank a ton of water, gaterade, and some tea. We picked up some more ice water at the gas station across the street, but I still felt bad. I didn't think I had heat stroke because I had drank a lot of water on the bike ride and I was sweating, however, I did get a lot of sun.

When we came home I laid down for a bit and still didn't feel much better, so I looked up heat stroke on the internet and I'm pretty sure that's what was wrong. My core temperature had to have been real high because it is still at 100 and I finished my ride 6 hours ago. I think I'm pretty much under control so I don't want to go to urgent care, but I probably would have had we taken my temp after the ride. I do feel a bit sunburned as well. I still had a great ride.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Thursday April 15th, 2010 - Diet Control

So this month started at 322, which was embarrassing and discouraging, so I did what any good emotionally obese person would do. I ate... vegan, but still too many calories and not enough exercise. So this week I started a ten day diet. Rules: must eat every meal.

I have improved my vegan calories and I have already been to the gym three times this week. One thing to remember... successful diets are 80% calories and 20% or less exercising. Personally, I know I need to exercise a lot because it makes me feel better and makes it easier to stick to my diet. In addition, some of the first weight to go is muscle, so exercise helps direct the losing trend to fat.

At the start of my 10 day diet on Monday I weighed 331 (disgusting and embarrassing; binge eating). After shedding some bloating and water retention, I was 328.2 on Tuesday. Yesterday I was 327. Today I am 326 and my vegan diet has been at least a 4 out of 5. If I can maintain today, then I will give it a 5. My first 5 ever.

So if I lose 10 pounds by the 22nd, I will at least eliminated my recent binge eating. Writing my weight on the back of my hand is really helping me. As I reach for a cookie, I see it and stop. Starting from today, I have 30 days until my mom's 70th birthday party where I will see my family and friends. I would love to be 310 by then. Basically one half pound a day. That may be too fast, but I would like to try it. As long as I don't skip meals, I think it will be okay.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Tuesday April 13th, 2010 - Hand management

Wow. That sounded bad. "Hand management" Sounds like controlled masturbation. Ew. What I really meant to say was that writing my weight on the back of my hand, discretely next to my thumb, worked well yesterday and today. Yesterday I weighed 331 and I knew that was wrong, but that is what the scale said. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that I did go to the gym yesterday for 1 1/2 hours of brutal exercise.

This morning I weighed in at 328.2. See? Yesterday had to have been wrong. You can't lose 3 pounds in one day. I went to the gym again today and had a full workout with the "oh mama" trail (32 mins) and all of my weight machines. Something is up with my shoulder so I went a little light on some of the shoulder related stuff. I just took a shower and I weighed 326 something. Again impossible. I must be dehydrated. Anyway, the stupid writing on the hand is working so I think I will be able to make the 10 pounds in ten days. Easily.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Monday April 12th, 2010 - 10 in 10 days

I hate the commercials proclaiming 10 pounds in ten days. They usually involve some stupid pill that really cleans your colon and makes you piss. I can guarantee that I can lose four pounds in one day. All I have to do is ride from Morrison to Denver and back (34 miles) in the summer heat. No matter how much water and gatorade I drink on the ride, I usually weigh four pounds less than I did before the ride.

That being said, I weighed in at 331 this morning. I was constipated and bloated so I know it's off by as much as 5 pounds, but still! Wholly crap. I was down to 313 in October. This is stupid. The fake tattoo was stupid. I weighed in at 322 on the 1st. I must get down to 319 by the end of the month, so I'm going to do my version of the 10 day. First, 10 day plans are stupid, but its only 3% of my body weight so it's not so bad. My plan is simple: Follow my own advise... sleep well, eat vegan, but not too much, and exercise... a lot. My other tool is writing my daily weight on the back of my hand. I'm trying to psychologically shame myself into compliance. I did great today, but I had to run my youngest son into the ER for possible appendicitis and it got late and I got real hungry. I ate a small bowl of granola with soy milk. Not the worst thing in the world, but it's not going to be helpful for the 10/10.

Fair warning. My 18 year old got his license today. Now two of my flock are on the road. Avoid driving in Denver. It occurred to me that there are two things that my sons could say to freak me out... 1) She's pregnant 2) Dad, can I borrow the BMW. Scary stuff.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Sunday April 11th, 2010 - Date Night... movie

On Saturday, I did a compressed workout and today I was ready to go, but I went with my wife grocery shopping instead. Soooo, tomorrow morning I'll get a thorough workout. If we went back to my eating rating of 1 to 5 (5 being the best) then this weekend was a 1 on both days. Weekends are usually the hardest for me. I really hate when I reverse the good work from the week before. Nothing is as defeating as losing 5 pounds in a week and then regain it over the weekend.

I started my fake tattoo reminder, but I still had four cookies with my morning coffee. I had a soft pretzel for lunch at the theater. Not such a great thing. However, laughter is the best medicine. Actually there is science that proves that laughter is good for you. Laughter definitely helps me deal with depression. Jovial moods can only start with some laughter. Being bipolar, I must find things to fight depression. And gaining weight really depresses me and then I eat more comfort food which makes me hungry and... you get the idea.

So, my defense starts with exercise and a good diet. In addition, writing on the Positano book, painting with acrylics, and volunteering at the museum help. Probably the single thing that brings me the most pleasure and laughter is playing with baby Rylan. She may be my cousin's baby, but we already have a special relationship. When I come into the room I beam and she beams and watches me with a huge smile until I leave the room. Actually, sometimes I poke my head back in the room and she's still watching for me. We giggle a lot. Regardless of where we move or whatever changes in our lives, that baby is a little bit ours. More than a practice grand daughter, she is truly and deeply loved by Cheri and I. But she loves me the most :-)

This afternoon Cheri was looking a little lazy so I got her out of the house to go see the movie "Date Night." Carrol and Fey are way too funny. I was laughing or at least smiling through the whole movie. I laughed a lot this weekend and that is why it was a great weekend. I'm looking forward to writing and painting this week. Right now I even enjoy housework. Especially when no one else is home. The more things you do to keep your mind healthy the better you are able to handle blips. Happiness leads to more happy health which allows you to lose weight. Everything is relevant.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Friday April 9th, 2010 - On the road again....

I can't believe the week slid by. On Thursday I renewed my gym membership and worked out hard. Full weights and one "oh mama" trail. Felt great. This morning I was back at the gym by 7am, but I only rode the "oh mama" trail once.

I'm trying a new strategy to sticking to the diet. I have these temp tattoos. Not the kind you get out of gum ball machine, rather, a design from a Denver artist. It's kind of tribal, but new wave at the same time. I already have a wrap around tattoo on my left forearm, so I'm going to apply this tattoo to my right forearm. After a few days it will start wearing off and I'll put a new one on. I have a fairly unlimited amount of copies.

Tomorrow, I'll go back to the gym and probably ride on the bike. Should make for a good weekend.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Tuesday April 6th, 2010 - Still struggling

I would love to say that I've been great on the diet, but the truth is I've had trouble eating too much. Good healthy food, but too much. Too much Easter candy. I'm afraid of weighing in heavier for my oncologist appointment on Thursday than I did a few months ago. It will be embarrassing. I also have a little anxiety about the results of the blood and CT scan. I occasionally feel a bit of pain where my enlarged spleen is. It concerns me. My platelet count concerns me. Not too excited about Thursday's appointment.

I am ready to renew my gym membership and get back at it. If I exercise everyday, I have an easier time sticking to my proper portions. It makes me kick into health nut mode. It's Spring time and it's time. So here we go. I guess you could call it round four. My first round was in the hospital in November 2007. The second round was in January 2008. I lost about 70 pounds in three months all of it the wrong way. I just lost my appetite and stopped eating. Round three was last summer when I lost 60 more pounds. This summer I want to lose the same. That means following last year's example.

As far as the fiction novel is concerned, I wrote through chapter 7 and I'm working on 8-10 and decided I need to get into touch with the dark side. I want the psychotic dreams to get heavy. My dark side isn't that shocking so I think I need to read the "on writing horror" book and watch some scary movies. I don't like scary movies. They remind me of my nightmares so I have always avoided them. But, not now. I need to watch something real scary like Nightmare of Elm Street. I'll have to watch it during the day and as an academic. Watching the film making; the angles; the backgrounds; the storytelling.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Friday, April 2, 2010

Friday April 2nd, 2010 - Super Mom

Today, being Friday, I took mom to her weekly workout at the gym. We really did a lot of stretching and some weight lifting, but she is a champ. I don't see my mom everyday. Just Friday's really, but at least it's quality time. I know she likes going to the gym and I know it makes her feel great after the workout. What I didn't know is that she says the she can feel the benefits of working out for about 4 or 5 days! Wholly cow! Definitely time well spent.

Tomorrow, I will renew my gym membership and begin my training once again. We know that exercise is great for your body and heart, but it really doesn't make you lose weight. Just look at football players. The ones on the offensive or defensive lines. These guys are huge and they workout everyday. Why are they so big? They eat a lot. So, if you want to lose weight, by all means exercise, but also remember that you still have to count calories. One of the pitfalls of exercising is that people tend to reward themselves with something that ultimately balances out the calories burnt during exercise.

I love to exercise because of the psychological effects of feeling great and it helps give me that extra push to eat right. Have I been eating right? Like everyone, I have good days and bad days. The trick is to have more good days than bad. It took me a long time to gain this much weight. I can't freak out if it takes a while to lose it. As long as I'm losing, I'm okay.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Thursday April 1st, 2010 - Horror

Today was full of errands. Beemer in for a new flash pan... whatever that is. They took more blood today. I'll find out next week, after my CT scan, if I have lost more platelets or if I have any new uninvited tumors. Yippe. I'm not worried. If I had cancer wouldn't I feel it? Sorry, oncologist joke.

I installed some new high efficiency lights in my "studio" (garage). I'm trying to reproduce a psychotic episode that had several years ago. Actually, my only psychotic episode. I had lost a lot of weight and offset my prescribed amount of lithium and it toxified. I can't remember if they took me off everything or pumped me full of more meds. I can't remember that January. Really, I lost about three weeks. All I can remember is my sick friend of whom I was trying to protect. Three weeks later I figured out he didn't exist. But i seem to be fixated on the whole waking dream or psychosis. I want to paint my friend, but I'm having some trouble remembering the demon he was.

The fascination with psychotic episodes, nightmares, and night terrors have found their way into my writing as well. I picked up two books to help me. First, the Surrealists (to study the art of weird) and, second, a book written by the world's best horror authors. The book, "on writing horror," is kind of a how to. I'm trying to write more disturbing dreams.

I was talking to an Air Force recruiter today. He's closing a chapter and trying to figure out his next move. I realized that I have not only figured out what I want to be when I grow up, but that the same things I love today are the type of things you do when you're retired. So there you go, I already have a plan for retirement. Alas, I will do what I love to do for the rest of my life. There is some great peace in that.