My Progress

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Diary of a former fat guy volume #1

Well I’ve finally become literally fed up with being overweight and a type II diabetic.   256 pounds and up to 60 units of Lantos a day, it wasn’t looking good.

It came down to a relatively simple decision process.  Get busy living, or get busy dying.  Knowing the results of unchecked diabetes and having small kids at home the decision was relatively easy.

I’ve spent a lot of time and frustration on being overweight, I’ve known how to fix the issue for years, and it is really as simple as it sounds.  Eat right and exercise more.  Nothing fancy, no drugs, no supplements, just watch what you eat and get out for some simple exercise.  Friends and co workers of mine have gone to doctors and weight loss clinics and some have shown some fantastic results.  Most of the results though have come with a cost however, money, lots and lots of money.  I just could not see paying hundreds to thousands of dollars to have a doctor tell me what I already knew, eat less, eat right, and exercise more.

Let’s start with exercise.  Some folks buy expensive home gyms, expensive clothes racks, (aka exercise machines), or long term contracts with gyms.  Again, I’m cheap and live within a budget; none of those solutions were going to work for me.  I went the simple route, I went for a walk.  I already own the clothes and shoes; I didn’t have to go buy a bunch of expensive gear and equipment.  I simply went out the front door and started walking.  Thirty to sixty minutes a day, simply walk, it’s that easy.

Now for the other half of the equation, eating right, this has always been an issue for me.  Given my preferences, a cheeseburger and fries and I’m happy.  I’m also a carbohydrate junkie, for me, the more carbs the better.  Pastas, breads, and potatoes were major food groups for me.  Combine that with a sweet tooth and it’s real easy to pack on weight and kill your pancreas in fairly short order. 
Several years ago I was seeing a dietician to work on controlling the weight and diabetes.  What she taught us was how to count calories, carbs, and how to eat right.  The problem I found with this program however was the amount of paperwork involved.  Eat an apple, thumb through a notebook to look up what the calorie, carb and protein numbers were so you could write them down in a notebook in order to total them at the end of the day.  Then tally everything up at the end of the week, month, and year.  It ended up being a lot of paperwork and being a pain in the butt.

My wife and I have found a couple of tools in order to eat right and loose weight.  The first and foremost was that we finally upgraded to an Android based smart phone.  I know, you’re asking what the heck a phone has to do with losing weight and getting your diabetes under control…  Actually we didn’t just get  new phones, we got “smart phones”.

Once we got the phones, we loaded a couple of different of applications on them.  The first application I loaded was On Track for monitoring my diabetes.  Previously, tracking my blood sugar was as labor intensive as counting calories, lots of writing down numbers, scribbling in a notebook, copying my numbers into a spreadsheet, in short, a pain in the ass.  On Track solves all the issues I had with tracking my blood sugar.  Simply enter the number into the application and you are done.  I can only think of one way to make it simpler, make my blood sugar monitor talk directly to my phone with no input from me, believe me, I’m already thinking on that idea.  I also use this application to track my daily blood pressure, insulin dosage, and weight.  The other application that we use it My Fitness Pal Calorie Counter, this application is extremely easy to use.  Simply tap in what it was you eat, hit the search button and add it to your meal diary.  At the end of the day, you can see at a glance what your calorie balance is for the day.  My Fitness Pal also allows us to track exercise.  Simply input 60 minutes of walking, hit search, and there is the total calories burned.  This allows us to not only watch how many calories we eat, but what our net calorie total, (how much we ate less how much we exercised) is for each day.

So far, it’s working well for both of us.

Hopefully you will check back often to see just where we are on our journey.

1 comment:

  1. And as your local cheeseburger dealer, I salute your efforts. ;)