Big Fat Queer

February 17, 2011

Salad with Shrimp and Steak

Filed under: Eat Less; Move More — bigfatqueer @ 1:37 pm
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Lunch today is a salad with romaine, shrimp, steak, hearts of palm, braising (craisins, damn auto-correct!) dressed with white balsamic vinaigrette. Tasty and about 600 calories. Not pictured two chocolate truffles 160 calories. Yes I’m counting them in the day’s total even if I don’t show them.

February 16, 2011

Asian Salad For Lunch

Filed under: Eat Less; Move More — bigfatqueer @ 1:29 pm
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Romaine, spinach, edamame craisins, avocado, carrots, grilled chicken, mandarin orange sections, sundried tomatoes.

January 31, 2011

Accepting Limits

I have always had this internal dichotomy regarding my relationship to realism. Intellectually I am very realistic. I tend not to like bullshit, especially when I think I am bullshitting myself. I like to face reality squarely. Then there is the subconscious/behavioral side of me which is often irrational, compulsive, impulsive. Food is one aspect of that dichotomy. There are many others.

In responding to a comment from yesterday’s post I talked about the limitations of age. Sometimes when I comment about age friends and co-workers say “oh, you’re not that old,” as though I am exaggerating my age and its effects. That always irritates me because it implies, at least in my mind, that they are trying to cheer me up or enable some kind of denial. My observations about aging are realistic. It’s not so much whining, as it is facing the reality. I am approaching 60 (less than 2 years away now) and I just don’t have has much stamina as I did when I was younger. There are other factors besides age, I’m sure: general health, weight, diabetes. But still, age has real effects and they have to be dealt with.

Where the dichotomy comes in is that I behave as if I were younger and had energy to waste. And I do waste it. My intellectual side and my behavioral side need to develop a closer relationship. It’s not that my age prevents me from being fully active and productive, but I have to marshal my resources better so that the things that are meaningful get done and the things that waste energy are avoided.

Stress is a huge waste of energy. Some of the stress comes from the fact that I am ready to do other things in my life and I am impatient to get on with it. But the reality is I need a few more years of work for purely financial reasons. The paramount goal should be to manage my health in such a way that I am not burnt out by the time I am in a position to do those things I want. Intellectually I know this, just as intellectually I know how to lose weight. Behavior has always been the hard part for me.

I used to meditate every day for 30 minutes, back in my 30s. I have been trying to do at least 20 minutes a day lately. It helps. I bought a nice iPhone app to time my sessions that ends with Tibetan bowls, much nicer than the ring tone that is on the regular iPhone timer.

Today I had no breakfast, a salad of greens, peppers, beans, peas, walnuts, carrots and craisins for lunch. I ate two pretzels this afternoon. I shouldn’t have but they were in plain sight and free. I did manage to avoid the bagels and muffins that were in the break room for the taking this morning. For dinner I had some roast chicken, spinach and green beans. I am around 1400 calories for today.

November 3, 2010

I Need Discipline. I Need Discipline. I Need Discipline

Golden Riot, originally uploaded by FantasticBabblings.

Ok, so I need discipline, and I’m not very good at it. The only way I can have discipline is to have a routine and stick to it. Lately I have given myself too many food options. So here is the routine I am trying to see if I can stick to it, at least for a while so I can get my weight back on a downward trend.

In the morning, coffee. No food. Despite the conventional wisdom, eating breakfast always makes me eat more all through the day.

For lunch, salad – vegetables only (which includes legumes, of course). Fortunately where I work there are several places that make very good salads with a wide variety of ingredients.

For dinner, meat, fowl or fish or cheese – nothing on the side.

For an evening snack, a piece of fruit.

This will give me a balanced, ample meal spread over the course of a day.

I’ll try it for a couple of days and let you know if I can stay with it. I think if I get keep it going through the weekend, I can keep it going for a while. Today I had a salad from a place called Chopt. I had the “Vegetarian Powerhouse” with broccoli, edamame, carrots, sunflower seeds, walnuts, craisins, apples, with spinach and romain lettuce. For dinner I had a steak (about 10 oz). I will have an apple later. I walked a mile and three quarters today.

Oh, I shot the picture above on Sunday in Central Park. Not many trees have turned yet, but this one was brilliant and everybody in the park was photographing it.

September 18, 2010

Pre-Stress Test

NY Harbor, originally uploaded by FantasticBabblings.

Monday I finally have my stress test at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, who claims to have a scanner that will accommodate a 430 pound body. Since mine is considerably less than that, I should fit – and still be in Manhattan, but just barely. I do wonder though how they come up with a number like 430, when the circumference of a 430 pound human can vary depending on height. In any event, I should fit.

When the test was first scheduled, or at last re-scheduled, I had a nightmare that I would be told after the test that they must crack open my chest immediately and do dastardly things to my innards. I really don’t have time for that foolishness. But it did feed some anxiety about the test. But by the week’s end I was feeling cocky that everything would be fine. At least good enough not to require any immediate surgery. I am a bit scalpel-phobic.

So today I put my heart to a little bit of stress to reassure myself. I walked four miles, most of it at a fairly brisk pace, a good mile or so uphill, and I had no chest pains, no shortness of breath and I do not feel fatigued, but rather invigorated. My poor ankle joints are a bit strained, but if you had to carry that weight you would too.

I did errands this morning and walked about a mile in the neighborhood. During my errands I ate at a diner, having eggs and sausage. I also had potatoes, which I usually eschew, because I knew I was going to be doing a lot of walking. I injected insulin, but I thought I compensated for the exercise. Then I took a subway to Brooklyn Heights to go to the promenade to shoot footage for my river project. I’m including the Harbor as well.

After Brooklyn Heights I intended to walk across the Brooklyn Bridge back to Manhattan. You get a much better view walking towards Manhattan rather than from Manhattan to Brooklyn. I got about a quarter mile up the ramp to the bridge and started feeling a little wobbly. I tested my blood sugar and it was 110. I ate my emergency Snickers and walked a bit more, but still didn’t feel too strong. I tested my blood sugar again and it was 98, still going down despite the candy bar. I didn’t think it wise to continue as on the bridge there is no place to get anything sweet to eat or drink and I was also feeling a little dehydrated. So I re-traced my steps back to the entrance to the ramp where there is a diner and I sat for a while and had a grilled cheese sandwich with a Pepsi (a rather flat Pepsi, but it had sugar). After resting and getting some carbs I felt fine to continue on. So I did and completed the trip across with no problems. I got some really good footage and a few still shots as well, including the one in this post taken from the bridge looking toward the harbor with the Verazzano Narrows Bridge in the background.

After I post this I am going to have some Greek yogurt with peach slices and fresh raspberries.

After my transgression earlier in the week, I have been pretty responsible with eating and moving. Thursday I worked in another office from my usual office and ate some Vietnamese spring rolls and salad at a restaurant nearby. When I got home I made a gumbo from the breasts of the rotistterie chicken I had eaten part of (the dark meat) the night before. It was tasty, but later in the night I had stomach cramps and cold sweat. Everything cleared up by Friday, so I don’t know what it was, but I threw the gumbo away just in case. I didn’t want to eat anything I had eaten the day before.

Friday I had lunch with a colleague at a tavern near Madison Square Park. We split an appetizer plate with wings, chicken fingers and sliders (I had one slider). The small bun on the slider and the breading on the chicken finger (not all that much) were the only carbs. My entree was a grilled shrimp salad with avocado and hearts of palm. For dinner last night I had shrimp and walnuts with no rice from a Chinese restaurant.

I have had a lot of salty animal fat today, so I may eat only vegetables tomorrow. I can’t have any caffeine until later Monday and I don’t tolerate caffeine well late in the day, so probably Tuesday. I may have to get up early Tuesday just for a caffeine fix.

I will let you know how the stress test turns out.

August 25, 2010

Fat is Good

Well, some fat. The conventional wisdom that so much of the health-care and food industry perpetuates is that low fat diets are good for everybody. They probably are, for some people, for example people who have normal blood sugar levels and high blood fat levels. They probably should eat less fat and more complex carbs.

But I am the opposite. My blood sugar is elevated and my blood fats are extremely low. Thus I think it makes sense for me to eat more fat and less carbs. But mostly the good fats from nuts, olive oil, avocado and for me it seems coconut fat is good. I went back to having some coconut oil and/or milk every day this week and I can tell a difference in my appetite. From what I read, medium-chain triglycerides (like coconut oil) are metabolized into energy almost as directly as carbs, and not immediately stored. But they don’t raise blood sugar, at least not for me.

I will monitor the levels because as a diabetic, I don’t want to risk any elevation of blood fats above normal, but as long as I can tolerate the good fats, I am less hungry. I learned that earlier in this project, but I drifted away from it.

Today for lunch I had a ham sandwich on pumpernickel, half an avocado and a tomato. For an afternoon snack I had a Golden Delicious apple. For dinner I had another of the same sandwich and a vegetable puree of yellow squash, onions, carrots and lima beans with some coconut milk and sriracha.

Before bed I will have a small frozen berry and coconut milk and coconut water smoothie.

I walked a mile and a half today.

I have a three day weekend coming up. My energy levels have improved this week. I don’t know how much of that is diet and how much is the demise of infection agents. I have some ideas of things I want to video since the weather is supposed to be really nice. It involves a little travel around bodies of water.

August 16, 2010

Trying to be as Good as My Word

In my last post I said that I was going to try only proteins with fresh fruits and vegetables for a while. Here is my first meal of today. I took a Subway salad and added some mixed baby greens I brought from home to the crunchy nutrition-neutral iceberg lettuce that Subway has. I also added a couple of boiled eggs and some Jarlsberg cheese. The salad is dressed with vinegar and oil, and if you know Subway, then you know it’s just about all vinegar. A little honey mustard is spread on the eggs.

For a couple of weeks I have been having breakfast, usually granola. It is good fiber, but the carbs in grains of just about any kind seem not to be suited to my metabolism. Since I have been measuring blood sugar (almost 14 years now) my morning sugar is always more elevated than other times of the day on an empty stomach. It is an anomaly, but consistent for my body. Since I have more than enough blood sugar in the morning I think adding to it in any way is more than superfluous. I know dietitians and nutritionists promote breakfast as the most important meal, but there is no one-size-fits-all rule about eating. We are all different.

July 31, 2010

Saturdays Are Too Short

I didn’t really sleep too late this morning. I was up at 9. But this day has flown by. I spent most of it working on the edited version of my “Life in a Day” video. It’s taking a while because I am also composing a score. I think I have used up most of Kevin MacLeod’s music and a lot of Audionautix (very generous musicians who allow their music to be used royalty free). I can’t use copyrighted music because I am a YouTube partner and they won’t approve it if I don’t have permission or own the copyright. It takes me a while to compose and perform since I am not really a musician.

I took a haircut this afternoon. All of my life before I moved to New York I would “get” a haircut. In New York, especially among older New Yorkers, you “take” a haircut. I used to be a giver; now I am a taker.

I had some Kashi GoLean Crunchy granola for breakfast with skim milk and a banana. I didn’t eat again until about 9 pm this evening. I was so busy I didn’t notice the day had flown by. I ordered two fish tacos and a small order of Mexican rice from a really good (though a bit overpriced, even for NY) neighborhood restaurant called MXco. And I had the salad pictured above, which was the best part of the meal. It was romaine lettuce (regular supermarket stuff), but all the rest of the ingredients were from the Green Market. Red globe tomatoes, yellow plum tomatoes, mangoes and red cherries. The picture was snapped before I dressed it with a little lemon juice, balsamic vinegar and just a drizzle of olive oil.

July 22, 2010

I Ate My Emergency Snickers

I walked a lot today, about two miles. It was hot, but not so humid. I had a low blood sugar moment while I was making a video after work. I went downtown to do an on-site vlog about the Mosque controversy near Ground Zero and walked a lot there. I had to eat my emergency Snickers. But otherwise it was a good day.

I had a granola bar for breakfast. For lunch I had some roast chicken, about six ounces, and a salad. When I got home from shooting the vid I had a pumpernickel bagel with cream cheese and smoked salmon. After I post this I will once again dare to eat a peach.

My video is rendering. I will post it and it should be live by tomorrow morning.

Good night all.

June 22, 2010

Still Going

Fashion Police

Originally uploaded by FantasticBabblings

So far this has been a busy week. I am trying to catch up on a hundred random things at home and work. I think my energy level has increased because I am getting a lot of stuff done. Whatever extra energy there is, though, I’m using.

Yesterday I added another three quarters of a mile for a total of one and three quarters mile of walking. I finished the day with some dark meat chicken and steamed broccoli and stewed tomatoes. For a snack I had a couple of small peaches and a Bosc pear. I was at a little over 1500 calories for the day.

Today I didn’t eat breakfast, had a peanut butter and banana sandwich on rye for lunch. I didn’t have organic peanut butter as I have been lately. Instead I had Peanut Butter & Company’s The Bees Knees. It has some honey in it. I won’t buy this regularly, but I had a taste for it today. I had an apple for an afternoon snack. This evening I had a salad and some Finn Crisps with edamame hummus. I will have some fresh cherries later. This totals about 1350 calories for the day.

I bought some resistance tubes to get some upper body exercise along with the walking. I’ve had them for a few days and use them while watching tv. I did about 15 minutes tonight of toning exercises while watching Jeopardy.

I walked a mile and a half today. On my lunch walk I took this picture. Several of these mannequins are being set up along Broadway in the Garment District for some kind of fashion display beginning Thursday.

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