What I ate today
Breakfast (10 a.m.)
2 servings of lowfat cottage cheese
Fat: 3 grams
Lunch (12:30 p.m.)
1 Healthy Choice smoked sausage
Fat: 8.75 grams
Snack (3 p.m.)
3 ounces of roast beef
Fat: 3 grams
Dinner (6 p.m.)
1 slice of multi grain bread
2 ounces of turkey
2 servings of fat free mayonnaise
2 cups of Campbell’s Chunky grilled chicken and sausage gumbo
Fat: 7 grams
Snack (9 p.m.)
2 servings of baby carrots
Fat: 0 grams
Total Calories: 1,075
Total fat: 21.75 grams
Exercise: None. Shep had to cancel today. We will try again Thursday. Meanwhile, regular workout coming tomorrow.
I was talking to a friend today, and we were doing the usual sob stories about how some famous writer is only 30 years old. This makes both of us depressed. See, we want to be writers – real writers, not just local sports writers – and we feel that at 26 years old, we should at least be on the path to brilliance. It seems, though, that we aren’t really on that path. In fact, outside of my 20 high school sports stories per week, neither of us have taken the necessary steps to even have a chance at brilliance. We talk about it a lot, like kids dream of becoming baseball players. But we never really act. And the few times we have, frustration comes long before the greatest story ever told.
So that got me thinking.
Our lives are made up of one very simple concept. Every single thing around me right now, the studio apartment with the 27-inch television and the messy bed and the clothes laying in a pile at its foot. The refrigerator filled with vegetables and the weird stain forming around my bathroom sink. That’s all because of the choices I’ve made.
My existence in this town? I chose it. At least I made the choices that led to me being here. My weight? I chose to eat things that would consequently make me fat. I chose to accept those long term consequences for short term gratification. I chose to do this blog and make myself available to anyone who wanted to know about my life. And in the process, I am choosing to offer myself up as an example and, maybe, as a source of inspiration.
But I made my situation, and I can’t really defend that. Perhaps it takes awhile for a person to figure out that he is a result of his own wants, needs and emotions. Maybe it takes until 18, or 20, or 25. I can’t say for sure when it hit me. Hell, it might have been this morning for all I know. But the simple fact is, none of this was done to me. It was all done by me. The things I value in life, those are my choices too. So are the things I hate.
If I want to stay up on the internet and talk dirty to Vietnamese teens until the sun comes up, well I have that choice. But, you see, I don’t have the urge to do that, so that choice is easy. I won’t.
But some choices are harder than others. Some choices are the result of impulses. Some are a result of situations where we believe we are too weak to make the right choice, so we give it no thought. Isn’t that sort of the reason this country is filled with overweight people? Believing we do not have a choice, that is what leads to chaos. But we all have something like that, we all believe that we are defined by certain things which actually have no real importance in our lives. My love for pizza, for example, defined me. It was a given for me that I would order a pizza each weekend. It was what I did. I was a guy who like pizza more than any other food. So why would I torture myself by NOT ordering a pizza? It would be like Batman without his utility belt or Roy Rogers without Trigger.
And why was it always so hard for me to figure that out? Actually, it wasn’t. I just conveniently ignored the fact that there was any choice at all. And here I am, trying to reverse it.
If my quest inspires people, that’s great. If not, well hopefully in the end it will all work out for me. But if it does, I hope it inspires people with all kinds of problems. Because if you clear away the weight loss vehicle of all this, in the end it just comes down to realizing that choices never go away. On the surface, this is about me wanting to lose weight. But deep down, this is about me taking control of my life, myself and my choices.