When it comes to exercise and diet, I talk a big game. But that's all it is, talk!
Physically, I'm far from peak condition...very far. My eating habits are horrible. I don't exercise. When you combine those two, I'm surprised, I don't weigh three hundred pounds. And when you combine that with my family history of heart disease and diabetes, I'm surprised I don't have either of those. Hell, I'm surprised I'm still alive and as healthy as I am.
Every so often I think about making some changes to try to get healthier. In early December 2017, I was in a bar with some friends. As I was munching on some cold french fries, I looked at a friend, held up the fry and told her I my new year's resolution was to stop eating shit like this. She laughed at me. My thought was we'll see who is laughing a year from now. Sadly, it was her....and it still is.
The major food groups of my current diet are cheese, pizza and ice cream. The minor ones include hot dogs, fried chicken and pasta. Sure, I love fruit and a few veggies, but if I had to make a choice about what to cut out of my diet, blueberries or Cherry Garcia, the berries are going to be as dead as Jerry Garcia.
Let's take a peek at my food choices for this week. I had pizza for dinner on Saturday, Monday, Wednesday and Thursday. Wednesday's pizza was washed down with a bowl of cheesy french onion soup.
Seriously, why are my arteries not hardened? How am I not a candidate for bypass surgery?
Next comes the exercise portion of my health program. I've been talking about joining a gym since that day I pretended I was going to eat healthier. The keyword there is talking.
I keep telling people that there's a gym at my local senior center. The cost for joining is $16/year. Let me repeat that: SIXTEEN DOLLARS A YEAR! I figured I would sign up, get off my ass, out of the house and get into shape. Win/win/win! The worst that would occur is I would never go and I would out the sixteen bucks. Only a small loss/loss.
I couldn't even bother to sign up. Hell, I haven't even been to the senior center in a couple of years. Hmm...I wonder if the gym is still sixteen bucks? I winder if the senior center is still there?
All of this brings us to last Monday.
I was going to my local Whole Foods grocery store. I was crossing a street when the light changed to red. I ran across the intersection. When I reached the other side, I was breathing hard, couldn't catch my breath and my heart was beating very fast. I often run further and faster to catch a bus and I've never had anything like this happen.
After taking some time to calm down, I headed to my doctor's office to tell them what happened. They ran a few tests, determined I didn't have even a small heart attack and decided it was probably a one-off episode. In fact, my primary physician told me I should do the run again to see what happens. So, if you hear that I dropped dead in the middle of the Ashland-Belmont intersection, you'll know who to blame.
It did shake me up enough to decide I need to make at least a small change in my lifestyle. I have to become less sedentary. Between writing and watching MSNBC or sports every waking hour, I'm on my ass quite a lot. To counter this behavior, I've decided to take up walking....again. Yes, I did this once before and apparently I stopped. I have no idea why. Maybe it's the nine months of winter that we have in Chicago every year?
When you're serious about walking, you need something to count your steps. Decision number two, I'm going to buy an Apple watch. I've had my eye on one for a few months. The newest series has a feature where if you fall and don't get up, they'll alert the authorities. That would come in handy if I do have a heart attack while crossing the street towards Whole Foods. I saw this model made in conjunction with the designer Hermes that looked really sharp. I could definitely see myself wearing one of those....until I saw the price. $1250!!! I'm thinking there's a less expensive way to do this.
I wondered if there was an app I could download to do this? Before I could get to the App Store, I noticed this preset icon that says health. It even has a little red heart on it. What do you think this means? Let's open it up and find out! Hmmm...they have a daily step tracker and it even tells you the distance you've walked. BINGO! I've just saved myself $1250!
Btw, I've had this phone for close to two years. Do you think there's anything else on it that I've never seen?
So I'm all set and ready to start walking. In fact, I already started earlier this week. Yesterday, I went for 2.4 miles and almost 6,000 steps. Yeah, I did stop at Trader Joe's to get the ice cream and the cookies, but that doesn't negate the walking, does it? Hey, it's early in the program and I'm still trying to figure it out.
Small steps, people, small steps! Let's start with the walking, try to get to around 10,000 steps daily and we'll deal with pizza, cookies and ice cream later. Because getting to a later, is the goal of this venture.
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