Day 331

I have a very specific weight loss program that I try to follow. When I follow it religiously, I lose weight. When I do not follow it, I do not lose weight. It is not more complicated than that. As the title of this journal entry says, today is the three hundred and thirty-first day that I have been on my weight loss journey, but if I had to guesstimate how long I have been following this specific program, I would guess a little less than half of that time.

Being dishonest about weight loss is like arguing with the petrol gauge in your car. You can fight and make excuses and explain why you had to accelerate and brake so often, and nothing will change the fact that you have burned through X number of litres of petrol. Likewise, I can claim that I have been good, I can swear that I ate well, but at the end of the day, the numbers on the scales will be what they are, despite all reasons and excuses. I could write in this journal (as I have daily for three hundred and thirty-one days) that I was good on the program on previous days, but the numbers on the scale will be honest no matter what I write herein. In other words, lying will help nobody.

Yesterday I was not only within the parameters of my program, I was under them. I am usually allowed my morning meal replacement, my afternoon meal, then a meal replacement in the late afternoon, and one in the evening. I drink one pot of coffee per day which amounts to 3.5 mugs, each with a splash of milk and a little less than half a teaspoon of raw sugar. Because I was teaching last night, I also added two cups of tea (Japanese Royal Milk Tea, 60 kcal each) and two lozenges (of which I am unsure of the nutritional contents). However, I consciously decided to forego my last meal replacement, which should more than counterbalance the extra calories and carbohydrates from the tea and lozenges.

Yesterday was the second or third consecutive day in which I was completely true to the program. I wrote in my journal entry yesterday that according to the bathroom scale, I was even with my best-weight-ever. I expected this morning to surpass that number, which a loss of even a couple of ounces would have accomplished. It was more than a little frustrating to step onto the scale to see very much the opposite of what I had expected and hoped for. I had gained nearly 2.5 lbs.

Fuck you, diet.

I do not like gaining weight, no matter the reason. When my weight gain is a consequence of cheating on my food program, I understand and grudgingly accept it. I did this, therefore that happened. For every action there are consequences, right? When I do not cheat, I expect to lose weight. Often times, I will not lose, but I will not gain. I don’t much care for that either, but I accept it. This, however, is total crap. It is bullshit. A 2.5-pound gain after three days without cheating? No, Ma’am! I do not accept that as normal or justified.

Yes, I am pissed off this morning. It does not matter to me that I weighed myself two hours earlier than I normally do (as I am teaching an early class this morning). Might that make a difference? Maybe… but it should not. Also, it is not like I can have a do-over… I cannot just strip naked at 7:45am and re-weigh myself, expecting the numbers on the scale to be better. My first cup of coffee and my morning meal replacement would render any potential change meaningless. No, I have to wait until tomorrow. This stumble also means that I have lost two more days in my quest to achieve my goals before the end of the year, which is fast approaching and almost here.

I am teaching all day today, which means that during the day I will be mostly at my desk. I have not yet decided if I will try to eat my meal at lunch time, or if I will make it a Shabbat dinner. I am leaning toward the latter, because I do not want to rush my lunch. With that said, if I eat in the evening, I should probably forego the weekly indulgence of the challah bread… or at least, if I do get it, then I will buy one and not two of them. I know that challah is, for me, a kryptonite, and if it is here then I will eat it. I will have a k’zayt of wine (the smallest measure that Talmud allows us to say the kiddush over), but that is it. Also, judging by my current level of fatigue, I might need to prepare and consume a second pot of coffee today. We will see…

There are now fifteen days left in 2022, and I am back to 6.5 pounds from the 300-pound milestone, and 11.5 pounds from the 100-pounds lost milestone. The fewer days remaining in the year, the less hopeful I am that I can achieve either of these. Yesterday I was a lot more optimistic than I am this morning. Hopefully tomorrow will be better. This morning just sucks.

It is funny that I should be so down today. Yesterday I thought I was taking a step toward feeling better. In fact, I know that I did. I also know that the first step to fixing as defective heart is often for a surgeon to cut you open and spread your rib cage to cut into it. Yesterday was my first appointment with my therapist in five years. Therapy is meant to take a lot of time before the first breakthroughs come, so I expect that both she and I were surprised when we came to a major realization that might be causing so many of the issues I am having in our very first session. It was unexpected to say the least. The fact that it is also possible that these issues are perfectly normal given a possible diagnosis, and that they can be resolved with a simple medication is also a huge shock. I will be following up with my family physician next week, and if he is able to simply prescribe such a medication, we will be able to monitor for improvements in a relatively short time. If not, then I might need to be referred to a psychiatrist for a proper diagnosis, which will take more time (but which will likely provide even more insight). That does not mean that I will not be continuing with the therapy – I will be. Hopefully, between the medication and the therapy, we will be able to see improvements in a relatively short time. No promises, but here’s hoping.

This evening I will light the Sabbath candles, and I will pray for peace, joy, and health for my wife, my children, and for myself. I will also continue to pray for my friend who was recently diagnosed with breast cancer, and who this week was informed that the cancer has spread and is quite aggressive. I will pray for her and for her family. I will pray for all of my friends and loved ones, and I will pray for peace. I think these last few weeks, more than anything, I have needed to pray for peace in the world but also in my heart and soul. I have been missing it, and I need to find it again.

As an aside, as I type this paragraph, this journal should hit the 270,000 words mark. It is hard to believe that despite all of my ups and downs, throughout everything I have gone through this year, that I have, for the most part, stuck with the program. I remember a year ago telling Leslie that I would be starting my diet in the new year, and while it took a few extra weeks, I did… and I have stuck with it. No, I have not stuck with it with the religious fervor that I might have, but I have been trying. I have not given up, and three hundred and thirty-one days later, I have written my thoughts and feelings and stratagem in this journal. Four hundred and twelve pages of my thoughts. I have read books shorter than this. Yes, there is a lot of repetition, but I am not trying to write a Dickens novel, only a weight loss journal. I was accused recently of giving up and not finishing what I start. While that is true in a lot of things (and which might also be helped with medication if the diagnosis is correct), I have not given up on losing weight. I have a long way to go… but I am still on track.

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Have a great day folks.

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