May 29, 2003

What if?

by Chris Feeney

What if it was easy to lose weight? There are millions of diet plans and exercise programs out there but short of sewing my mouth shut I'm not sure I'll ever slim down again. For the past several years I have made the decision to try to cut a few pounds and get rid of my expanding waistline. Of course we all know it's easier said than done. Until recently it simply had been a vanity issue for me. Now I've never had six-pack abs but when I could no longer even suck it in far enough to pass the mirror test I decided it was time to cut the gut. My problem is, no matter what I do I'm not going to stop eating. I think munching is my favorite hobby. Some people like fast cars, old coins or sports collectibles. Me I love a good meal.

Well all of that changed after I had a little medical exam a couple months ago. Nothing really wrong, just a little check up. I found out my blood pressure is perfect, I have great cholesterol numbers, and I am average in everything else across the board. Well that is except for my triglycerides. My whats? Yeah that's exactly what I said. Basically these things measure your fat intake and boy do I have a fat intake. My numbers are well above average, meaning I am more susceptible to heart disease and other medical issues. The good news is, the numbers are easily lowered. Of course easily if you don't mind eating shrubbery and tofu. My other option is to exercise. It seems a sedimentary lifestyle also adds to the triglyceride numbers. Apparently I've been eating too much fried chicken while spending the entire day on the couch.

The dietary issues could not have come at a worse time. My wife is one of those skinny people who can eat whatever she wants. Needless to say her cooking habits don't aid my weight control pursuits. Well now that she's pregnant again I'd be better off working at a candy store.

Of course there's always exercise all be it that I'll need to run a marathon everyday to work off the eight meals a day my wife is cooking up for me.

I never realized how hard it is to exercise in a small town like ours. The last three nights that I've been out walking I've had to turn down half a dozen offers for rides. The one night I was running the police pulled in behind me and wanted to know who was chasing me. I figured I could always combine a workout with some of the everyday tasks I must perform. So I drug out the push mower and started to go to work on my 10-acre yard. By the fourth day when I was finally finishing up not only had both my neighbors offered to loan me their riding mowers another five or six youngsters had stopped to ask if I wanted to hire their mowing service. I couldn't even get much walking in when I played a round of golf Sunday afternoon as I played unbelievably well and simply didn't swing the clubs as many times as normal not to mention that I didn't have to chase my golf balls all around the course.

I guess I'll just have to break down and buy another year at the fitness center. I let my membership lapse after the first year. I checked my usage report and my access card was only used twice at the front door and both times it was so I could get into the rec/plex to take a picture for the newspaper. If only I had as much will power to eat right as I do not to exercise I wouldn't be writing this column.

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