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A Collection of Random Thoughts
Thursday, May 11, 2006
 
On a personal note
I've been working on losing weight as of late. It wasn't like I really needed to lose ton - I was right around 200-205lbs, which isn't heavy by any means, but I wasn't exactly happy with the way I looked, and playing sports (which I love, especially Basketball) often resulted in soreness in my knees. This told me that I was just putting too much stress on my knee joints. In other words, I needed to lose some weight.

In the past, I have followed the Atkins diet with quite a bit of success, so I decided to give it a go again. I started my "diet" about 3 months ago. As of this morning, I have dropped down to 169, and have lost at least 4 pants sizes (down to waist 34), though even then, some of my size 34 shorts are too big!

As with any "diet" program, there are a few things one must consider.

1. Willpower. You need to stick to the program. The Atkins diet is a low-carb diet. In my case, I had to be willing to temporarily give up a lot of things such as pasta, breads (there are low-carb breads available now), sugars, most fruits (at least to start) and the like. Thankfully, I didn't have to give up meat! Dieting with friends can be helpful and may mean success when going it alone would result in failure. My wife has been incredibly supportive in helping prepare alternative dishes, while also preparing regular dishes for the rest of the family. I've begun the gradual transition to eating more regularly, but I likely still won't eat regular bread or pasta very often.

2. Exercise. Almost any diet that doesn't include exercise is doomed to fail. If you've ever watched the show "The Biggest Loser", you'd know that a large part of the weight-loss program for those folks included exercise. When you are regularly exercising, your body burns more calories. In my case, I got a Nordic Track (cross country ski machine) which I try and use at least once a week, I started running at least once a week, and I play basketball once a week for around 2-2.5 hours.

I post this information not in order to laud my accomplishments, rather to share the information that I have used in order to achieve this. It's also worth noting that I have also decreased my portion sizes, and no longer drink any non-diet sodas. Have you ever looked at how much sugar is in a regular soda anyways? Many of them have more than 50 grams of sugar, which is a LOT. While the jury is still out on the long-term effects of sugar substitutes such as aspartame or saccharine (or splenda for that matter too), drinking diet sodas (and LOTS of water) has helped me achieve this goal.

Finally, different diets work for different people. I've found something that works well for me, but that doesn't mean it will work for everyone. If you are trying to lose weight, you need to find the program that works best for your body.

Now back to regularly scheduled programs...
Comments:
The weight loss is excellent, but if you're only eating meat and no fruits, is this good for your health?
 
I guess I should clarify.

Atkins isn't just about eating meat. I also eat a LOT of vegetables. Things like Broccoli, Cauliflower, beans, squash, etc. It's mostly about lowering sugar intake while you are losing weight. Most fruits have a lot of natural sugar in the form of fructose in them. All sugars are converted very easily to energy by the body, but whatever your body doesn't need is then converted to fat.
 
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