Big Fat Queer

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 15, 2010

Yes, I’m Still Alive

Filed under: Eat Less; Move More — bigfatqueer @ 11:52 pm
Tags: , ,

UIA Gargoyle, originally uploaded by FantasticBabblings.

I haven’t blogged for a while, or made a video, or tweeted much. I’ve been very busy with work. There is so much going on at one time and the result is trying to manage many different simultaneous priorities without veering into total chaos. The work is not physically demanding per se, but my head is overflowing. It’s like walking with your arms full of objects and dropping objects and trying to pick them up before the next few drop. So far I have managed, but it is stressful and that winds up taking a physical toll.

It’s nothing new. Every year around this time for the last couple of decades it gets more than usually busy. Sometimes particularly so. This is one of those years. I manage by withdrawing from most things other than work. Sunday was the only day off this week and it was a beautiful day for November. Sixty Degrees and sunny. I thought of going out and shooting some pictures, but I decided I needed to stay put and try to relax before it all started again. I even found the web to be tiring since one’s attention span gets scattered in so many different directions. So I read. I talked to my mother for an hour or so. I Skyped with my friend Jeff for an hour or so.

The thing about reading that makes it so much more relaxing at a time like this is that it is mentally continuous. It flows. Social networking, reading blogs, watching short videos are all disjunctive and my life has enough disjunction for now. So I read. I am about finished with The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen. I had never read it and I have his new novel Freedom on my Kindle. I wanted to read this one first. It’s good. Sometimes a bit pedantic and sometimes tedious, but very erudite and often funny. And the story does pull me along.

I have been reasonably successful at eating well. Only an occasional lapse. One cheeseburger this week, but mostly poultry, fish, vegetables and fruit. No ice cream. Very little alcohol.

I just haven’t walked as much as I want. I have probably averaged only three quarters of a mile a day for the last week. Time and energy are hard to come by.

I took the picture above this spring. It is one of many gargoyles on the Ukranian Institute of America at 79th Street and Fifth Avenue. It represents how I have been feeling on some days recently.

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