Two years ago I found myself in a hospital bed in the midst of a Hypertension Crisis. Nearly three days I laid there watching nurse after nurse take my blood, administer drugs and help me pee. X-rays, CT Scans and Ultrasounds told the story of my lifelong unchecked High Blood Pressure and the Left Ventricular Hypertrophy it had caused. My cholesterol was out of whack. My Potassium level was too low. I weighed in at 24 stone. I was sick, overweight, and depressed.
I spent the following months making a plan to lose weight, reverse the Left Ventricular Hypertrophy, and keep my blood pressure in check. The doctors put me on a cocktail of Lisinopril, Hydralazine, Amlodipine, and Spironolactone.
In the end all of my plans failed. I lost 1.5 stone in 4 months then put in all back on over the next year. The medications dropped my Hypertension into the 140s/90s and then stalled out. My cholesterol and Potassium corrected, so not a total fail. As an added bonus to my quest for getting better, I also felt like crap all the time due to the medications. I suffered from headaches, rashes, feeling tired, muscle fatigue, dizziness, palpitations, high heart rate and a decreased desire for sex.
A Long December 2016
So after much debate with myself, I finally came to terms with the fact that I needed to lose weight and Weight Watchers, Nutrisystem, and the millions of fad West Coast Elitist diets were not the answer. I purchased a treadmill off Amazon. I bought a copy of the tracking app called Cron-O-Meter and started the long journey to a better way of life. I decided to NOT use a diet plan, I thought it best to focus on changing my eating habits instead of fighting a never-ending circle of deigning myself foods I liked to eat. Weight lose should not feel like punishment but should be rewarding and treated like an achievement. On a side note, I did tailor my life style to make use of some principles from the Paleo and DASH Diets and I also included information from the American Diabetes Association's magazine Diabetes Forecast on how to build your plate. The Paleo diet helped me to eat the things that my body needed to survive and the Dash diet helped with lowering my Sodium.
I weighed in at 336 and set my first goal at just 10% of my weight... 302. I want to get down to 199 but I thought setting smaller 10% "checkpoint" goals would seem less daunting.
The New Year Begins
January. The first month of a new year. The herald of endings and beginnings. The 30 days you realize your New Year's Resolution to lose weight is just as empty as the empty two liters and bags of chips on the couch. Left there after a marathon binge session of Boy Meets World.
So with that knowledge in hand, I did not make the weight loss resolution. I instead made a resolution to live longer than anyone in my family tree. As far as I could tell, to complete that resolution I would have to make it to 85. So that meant it was time to put all the research and the treadmill to work. It was time to change.
I began the change by removing anything from the cabinets and fridge that I deemed bad for the journey. I replaced the bad with the good. Loaded up on fruits, vegetables, and good proteins. I was going to do this.
It lasted two weeks.
Hello Boy Meets World. I brought chips and soda.
FAST FORWARD TO MARCH 2017
A picture is worth 25.6 pounds
So I weighed myself yesterday like I do every Tuesday and it seems that the lifestyle change and the determination has been paying off. I guess falling off the food wagon in January helped me more than I realized to focus on my 10% checkpoint goal, which is now less than 10 pounds away.