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A Million Bucks

July 22, 2004

This has been building for some time, but early last week I came to a decision. A resolution, if you prefer. Another way to better myself. The decision? To eat healthier (and less), and get in shape.

Where’d this come from? Pressfield’s book, perhaps. Stop planning to do things, stop making excuses and procrastinating, and just do them. Its part of that, just as the novel is. Part of it is for the mental benefits, the better bloodflow to the brain. Part of it is preventative. My right knee is pretty much shot, and my family has a history of back problems. I figure there’s no better way to dodge these problems later in life than cutting back the weight and toughening up my muscles.

What am I doing about my diet? No Atkins crap here, that’s for sure. I’m trying to practice what I preach, and actually go for moderation. Namely smaller portions. And I’m trying to make smarter choices about what I eat. Going for the pan-seared salmon instead of the pepperoni pizza. Bringing my own lunch rather than hitting Wendy’s. Eating more fruits and veggies. I may not drop weight as fast as on a crash diet, but this is more of a lifestyle change, and in the long run I think I’ll be more likely to keep the weight off.

What about exercise? For one, I joined a gym, though it doesn’t open until August 1st, so routine workouts won’t begin until then. I’ve also been really getting after it on the mountain bike. Those of you who know me from my college days will probably drop your jaws in disbelief to learn that I have been regularly getting up at 5:30 AM to hit the trails. But, with work and writing, and Jamie and the dogs, when else is there?

How’s it going? So far, great. Since keeping an eye on it last week, my weight has dropped from 215 to a low of 208.5 this morning. It usually averages in the 212 range, which is still pretty good for a week in, I think.

The biking’s also been going well. I’m still very much an MTB noob, but through all my lame spills I’m actually learning some trail skills, and getting more confident by the day. And faster. When I first got my bike computer, I was averaging 8.8 miles per hour on my runs. This very morning I put in a personal best at 10.5 MPH average speed. My only wish is that I had more time for longer rides. There’s only enough in the mornings to manage about four miles (twenty-two minutes or so of riding).

The benefit of all this? I’m feeling great. Literally, like a million bucks.

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