I’ve decided to get serious about loosing some excess weight. I have thoroughly and thoughtfully researched this topic and have come to the conclusion that most diet plans are written by the staff at “The Daily Inquirer.” I would love to write for them but my imagination just doesn’t stretch that far. I envision them gathering at the start of the work day for a little creative brainstorming and coming up with topics like — Brittany Spears Eats Paris Hilton’s little dog — Man discovers a potato in Ohio that looks just like a potato — Proof found that Andy Rooney was an alien — Wife has taxidermist stuff deceased husband, places him in his recliner with TV on, says it’s been two months and the kids haven’t noticed that he’s passed on yet. They then go to their little cubicles and write the articles for the paper. If they finish early, they write diets, a very talented and creative crew.

I know this sounds a little far fetched but how else can you explain things like; The Pregnant Woman’s Urine Diet, The Grapefruit Diet, The Cookie Diet, or The Kibbles and Bits Diet. Some don’t have silly names but just don’t logically make sense. I’ve had success with Dr. Atkins Diet but just the idea that you could consume the whole carcass of a cow while passing up a serving of beans or a slice of bread really doesn’t make sense.

A lot of diets ask you to keep a journal of all the foods you eat during the course of the day. It seems to help, I guess the hope is that the bookkeeping keeps you out of the refrigerator. I’ve looked at a couple of different people’s journals. When I finished looking at what they ate during the day and then looked at the person who had written the journal, the discrepancies were apparent. Their bookkeeping could have gotten them a CEO’s position at any number of large lending institutions. Most looked like they had “forgotten” a carton or two of “Little Debbie” products and three or four cheesecakes (which I’ve recently, sadly, discovered weren’t classified as dairy products), a couple bags of chips and a case of Pepsi. In fact, I think one should keep a food journal for a week, then be locked in a room for the next week and fed only what they had recorded in their journal. My bet is at the end of the week there’d be a goodly weight loss if the person hadn’t died from malnutrition.

All my research and pondering has led to the disappointingly logical conclusion that if you’re fat and want to do something about it, you had to consume less food and increase your activity level. Nothing magical, nothing mysterious, nothing I haven’t known for years, nothing I want to do. Our diet is already pretty healthy but even green leafy veggies consumed by the bale will add to your bulk—case in point, cows, horses and water buffalo.

Less food, more activity and reasonable expectations, I forgot the reasonable expectations part. I have in the past, eaten less, exercised and gotten on the scale at the end of the first day and been disappointed by the lack of downward activity. The idea that a weight loss of fifty or more pounds in the first week really isn’t going to happen is a reality I know I’ll have to face. I’m shooting for a pound or two a week — 50 pounds a year is a reasonable expectation.

Well, I think my mind set is now proper and reasonable and I’m going to start tomorrow. Tonight I’ll finish off the carton of ice cream in the freezer, the left over Pizza and that stray box of Girl Scout cookies, just so I can start with a clean slate.

Thought for the week — Some people are like Slinkies, they’re not really good for much but they do make you smile when you push them downstairs.

Until next week, may you and yours be happy and well.

Reach Dick Brooks at Whittle12124@yahoo.com.

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