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Old 11-23-2012, 08:25 AM   #151
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Aww, man - it won't let me edit. I went back to sleep and woke up 1.2 pounds lighter.

111.0

So I guess my experiment shows that a wild night of debauchery is worth 4 solid days of stall - more if you go overboard and put on a bunch of weight from eating carbs.

No matter - I had fun. and I'm going to be one of the only people in the US to lose weight on Black Friday.
I need a nap like that!
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Old 11-23-2012, 07:30 PM   #152
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Old 11-23-2012, 08:17 PM   #153
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To be fair, it was the extra trip to the john without eating or drinking that made the difference.
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Old 11-23-2012, 08:49 PM   #154
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Hey cool - I'm a full member now. I can send and receive private messages.
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Old 11-24-2012, 05:40 AM   #155
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Congrats! Hey, it took me a while to find you here... kinda miss your outlook in the main lobby!
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Old 11-25-2012, 12:03 PM   #156
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I passed the bar last night!

Through my liver, I mean.

This time I completely avoided liquid carbs and stuck with Irish whiskey. First Jameson, and when they ran out of that, Bushmills. Total carb count for yesterday: 8. I drank a lot less than last week, but I still got well and properly lit.

I know a lot of people here don't drink, so allow me a bit of exposition to bring you up to speed. One of the side effects of binge drinking is waking up at 4:30 AM with a massive leg cramp. One of the side effects of low carb dieting is also waking up at 4:30 AM with a massive leg cramp. So when you mix very low carb with very high alcohol, you create a perfect storm for outlandishly intense muscle cramps. Last night was worse than usual though. You see, usually you don't get these cramps until after you go to sleep. But I was so hammered, ketotic, and dehydrated that I started having terrible cramps in my back while I was still at the bar. That's bad news, because if you're already cramping while you're still awake, you're more or less guaranteed to experience the mother of all leg cramps after you go to sleep.

So I get home, and cognizant of my impending peril, I immediately set about to pre-treating my cramp in an attempt to avoid my fate. That means fluids and electrolytes. This isn't the sort of place where you can "drink the water", so fluids means a Coke Cherry Zero. The caffeine could actually make things worse, but sometimes you have to work with what you've got. I wasn't even thirsty, but I forced myself to drink the entire can. For electrolytes, we're talking about replenishing salts. But where am I going to find enough sodium without adding a ton of carbs? I rummage through the refrigerator and find a half of a hard salami. I look at the label, and sure enough it's loaded with sodium. I slice it up along with some cheese and eat the whole mess with some Mexican chipotle hot sauce (also high in sodium). There's more to electrolytes than sodium though. So I start wracking my brain looking for some way to put in some magnesium and potassium. I read the label of my multivitamin, and one of the ingredients is potassium iodide. I don't know if that counts as potassium, but I've got nothing to lose by trying.

I prefer to tackle my little 'self improvement' projects one at a time. It enables me to completely focus on one aspect of myself and work on it until it becomes a habit. But, when I'm coming home with fierce muscle spasms from the alcohol, dreading the prospect of going to sleep because of the inevitable leg cramps, wolfing down salami and cheese as a lame home remedy in some vain hope that I can avoid the natural consequences of my actions... That's kind of pathetic.

It's more pathetic than I'm willing to be.

The fact that I even have an opinion on alcohol cramps is bad. The fact that I have done this enough times to have an alcohol cramp strategy is a clear indicator that a change is in order.

It's a problem to be solved. Like all problems, root cause analysis is in order. I like a technique called "five whys"

Why was I drinking?
Because I was in a bar.

Why do I go to the bar?
I go there to sing.

Why am I singing in a bar?
Because it's one of the only things I'm good at.

Why is singing one of the only things you are good at?
Because I'm such a fat disgusting slob that I have to compensate for my grotesque inhumanity by developing my skills to the point of being freakishly good at something.

Why do I go through all that trouble?
Because it's the only way I can get some kind of positive interaction with other people. Because it's the only social environment in which I am welcome. Because it's all I know.

Because I'm alone.

I drink because I'm alone.

I go to the bar because for the price of a 25% tip, I can get someone whose job it is to pretend to like me, to pretend to like me for a few hours. Because I'll accrue 2 minutes of vigorous applause, and because four or five strangers will tell me how good I am at what I do. Because my self-worth is predicated on these meager scraps of approval.

It only takes 5 hours and 4 drinks for me to extract 6 minutes of shallow and meaningless social interaction to carry me over for the rest of the week.

Starting next week, I won't have transportation to my singing place. Without a social arena in which I am capable of competing, my inducements for the consumption of alcohol are removed. I don't think that's enough, though. Sooner or later I will need to sing again. Singing is an addiction I am unwilling to give up. That means I need to take alcohol off the table - not merely as a function of circumstance, but as an explicit point of policy.

And so, while I would generally wait until next year to begin on a new project, I find that this personality trait is working in direct opposition to this year's goals. It's not that I drink frequently - 7 times this year, perhaps. If that sounds frequent to you, keep in mind that my old number was closer to 156 times a year. The problem is, that I am seemingly incapable of moderation.

On the upside:
308.6

I guess cutting out mixers and beer from my binge drinking makes a difference! But, we'll see what kind of stall I experience from a carb-free alcohol binge. I suspect that the extra walking will help me to burn off excess fuels and return to ketosis more quickly - but only the scale knows for sure.
__________________
8/8/2012: 350
11/2/2013: 250
~June 286 (rebound peak)
9/1/2014 266.8

Shark Sandwich: One man's epic journey from fat to slightly less fat.

Last edited by Z; 11-25-2012 at 12:06 PM..
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Old 11-26-2012, 08:32 AM   #157
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307.6
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Old 11-26-2012, 11:30 AM   #158
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Enough of that business

...



Why is singing one of the only things you are good at?
Because I'm such a fat disgusting slob that I have to compensate for my grotesque inhumanity by developing my skills to the point of being freakishly good at something.

Why do I go through all that trouble?
Because it's the only way I can get some kind of positive interaction with other people. Because it's the only social environment in which I am welcome. Because it's all I know.

Because I'm alone.

I drink because I'm alone.

I go to the bar because for the price of a 25% tip, I can get someone whose job it is to pretend to like me, to pretend to like me for a few hours. Because I'll accrue 2 minutes of vigorous applause, and because four or five strangers will tell me how good I am at what I do. Because my self-worth is predicated on these meager scraps of approval.
Wrong, wrong and wrong! Good God, man, stop thinking like that. That's the easy way out. Are you reading these peoples' minds? Or just assuming? Do you think it's possible that some people don't judge everyone by one attribute? Personally, I usually don't. I confess to judging people for being drunks though. I never have seen anyone act very nicely when they're drunk. Drinking is ok, it only offends me when they have no shut-off switch and insist on staying at the bar so the rest of us have to watch them act stupid until they pass out.

You have several other qualities which are quite enough for people to like you. I would guess you'd be the life of the party, in fact, provided you're with people who can understand what you're saying. The fact that you sing well enough to inspire strangers to tell you so is awesome, but it has nothing to do with your value as a person (IMO).

Now don't make me tell you that again.
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Old 11-26-2012, 11:34 AM   #159
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Oh, and congratulations on the new low! You're going to be out of the 3s in a couple weeks!
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:48 AM   #160
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NH Free -- that was a GREAT post! Z, on this board/journal, you are incredibly smart, funny, insightful and charming -- so I have every reason to believe you are the same way in real life. Wish you would not feel so self-conscious.

And congrats on the weight loss! Like NH Free said, you will be out of the 3s in no time. I bet you will see 299 by next week or the week after.
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Old 11-27-2012, 11:47 PM   #161
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Are you reading these peoples' minds? Or just assuming?
The key metric here is interaction. And I've only got one trick up my sleeve for meeting people. I used to have 2, but I quit smoking. The difference, is that people don't stop and talk with the fat guy. They don't invite fat creepy guy to their table. They don't permit conversation. That means being clever or having a sense of humor doesn't even come into the equation. Not even if he's a wicked talented fat guy, which basically puts me on par with the 'world's strongest burn victim' - an oddity to be watched, but you wouldn't want to give 'im a hug.

You guys are sweet. I'm not fishing for sunshine, but thanks for bringing it. The reality is, I was a loser before I was overweight. I hammered out a workaround which allowed me play to my strengths and meet people. But now that I'm alone in a new place - the rules are different. I can't displace my loserness with talent anymore, because now I'm a fat loser with no friends

Whether these things reflect reality or not, the point of that exercise wasn't to explain how much I suck. It was about understanding the root cause of my drinking - because I don't usually drink. At the core of it, I was drinking because it gave me the opportunity to be around people, and attempt to make new friends down here in Arizona. However, because the drinking was interfering with my weight loss goals - the short term gain of meeting disinterested people now is far outweighed by the long-term strategic value of losing a bunch of weight, and meeting disinterested people in the future without the added social burden of being fat.

Furthermore, time spent drinking is time lost that could be spent doing off-the-clock research for work.

Right now, only two things are important to me: Losing weight, and getting promoted in the next year or so. I'm starting from the bottom rung - aside from a bed, I don't even have furniture right now. Just an empty apartment with a computer, and a monitor.

No TV. No chairs. No can opener. I don't even have a dish-sponge yet.

It's exciting. An all or nothing play to engage in class mobility. To move up from the zeroth class to the dead center of the middle class. The work that I'm being trained for is remarkably complicated and technical (and I used to be a malware S.M.E. for Norton). It's like learning an alien language, nested inside another alien language, nested inside a third alien language.

Tomorrow is the first test of five.

If I pass, I go on to the second unit.

If I fail, I go home.

I'm absolutely loving it, because failing isn't really something I do, but the difficulty is off the charts. I can't rule out the possibility that I utterly choke on the test, and find myself 1500 miles from home with nowhere to go. No matter how remote the likelihood, I could fail. I don't get to say those words too often. Failure has always been something other people do - usually because of a lack of focus, a lack of interest, and a lack of discipline.

People like to say "All that matters is that you try your best." I disagree. My axiom has always been, "All that matters is that my best is sufficient to avoid failure."

Without the possibility of failure, success means nothing. It drives me to learn faster, and to work harder.

Work and weight. Those are my masters for the next few months. And so far, I'm doing well at both.

306.4

Hard to believe I'm almost 40 pounds down. Pants that were too tight for me a month ago are starting to get a bit loose now. My jeans from my top weight are literally falling off. I'm going to have to buckle down and get another pair.

I keep eating meat and eggs until I am full - and somehow - I keep losing weight. Above all, I'm eating clean, and denying the many, many opportunities to cheat.

Seems funny now, to call it cheating. Cheating whom, exactly? The diet doesn't care what you eat - because a diet is a concept, and concepts don't care about things. Atkins, Eades, Eades, and Taubes don't care what you eat - not in any meaningful and specific sort of way. Most of the world would gladly pay you Tuesday to get you to eat a hamburger today.

You know who does care? You.

You aren't getting away with something when you sneak in a slice of pizza. You are cheating yourself out of a better reading on the scale. You are stealing something you wanted from yourself - for something so transient that the experience is over in a few minutes. I've had hundreds of slices of pizza - possibly thousands. I've had pizza that was so good, forged with such craftsmanship and excellence of ingredients it could be called art. and I've had pizza so cheap and terrible that the best conceivable use for it would be to hang it on the wall with a nail and call it art. And yet, not one slice anywhere on that continuum has ever satisfied my desire for pizza.

It's not cheating to eat off-plan:
It's merely duping yourself.
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Old 11-28-2012, 03:48 AM   #162
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Congratulations on the weight loss and GOOD LUCK with your test today! Please let us know how it goes.
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Old 11-28-2012, 04:07 AM   #163
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Such amazing progress, Z!
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Old 11-28-2012, 06:17 AM   #164
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Thanks Z. Bset of luck to you.
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Old 11-28-2012, 06:41 AM   #165
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It's not cheating to eat off-plan:
It's merely duping yourself.
When I first came to this site, I used to have a signature line that said:

"I could have chocolate cake right now but I CHOOSE not to"

The funny part is that it's completely true....losing weight is about choices.
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Old 11-28-2012, 07:45 AM   #166
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I bet you'll do great on the test.

OK, you were trying to examine your reasons for drinking. Sorry I took that wrong... and I know some people will judge you exclusively by weight, but I think they're a minority. Just consider that some of those other people may not be inviting you to their table because they aren't good at thinking of something to say to strangers (like me). It's not always about your weight. It could be that the goatee scares the hell out of them.

That thing you said about cheating yourself out of something you wanted should be posted on the main lobby before every holiday.
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Old 11-28-2012, 10:35 PM   #167
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The test took an hour and a half. I got a 92%, and I think the proctor was being overly nitpicky with at least 6 of the other 8%.

I prefer to stay in the triple digits on tests, but in this case, a pass is a pass. I still have a job. For this week

No movement on the scale today - still at 306.4. But I've been walking half a mile to and from work, twice a day - so there's a good chance that the extra exercise is causing me to take on some extra water weight - As I acclimate to the activity, that should go down.
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Old 11-29-2012, 05:39 PM   #168
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Congratulations on passing the test!!! Yay!
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Old 11-29-2012, 06:40 PM   #169
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yes, congrats on the test score!! (wrote something about water weight but deleted it because you might be offended)
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Old 11-29-2012, 08:31 PM   #170
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yes, congrats on the test score!! (wrote something about water weight but deleted it because you might be offended)


Now I'm curious!


I posted elsewhere that I gain weight every time I exercise - so now that I'm exercising every day, I've been stuck at 206 - and now 207 all week. clearly I can't keep gaining weight from the exercise - either way, that walk is a part of my day now.
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Old 11-30-2012, 07:36 AM   #171
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I've been stuck at 206 - and now 207 all week...
Stupid typos.

Oh well.

As of today I'm at 305.2. Hopefully I'm back on the downward trend.
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Old 11-30-2012, 05:57 PM   #172
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you'll be at 207 before you know it
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Old 12-01-2012, 10:29 AM   #173
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303.6

I love it when I skip a number altogether. It's going to be close, but I think I just might hit that goal of getting below 300 before January.
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Old 12-01-2012, 11:09 AM   #174
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I don't think it is going to be close at all Z. I think you will hit that number in the next 10 days.
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Old 12-01-2012, 11:12 AM   #175
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I don't think it is going to be close at all Z. I think you will hit that number in the next 10 days.
hahaha - you said that right as I was updating my projected milestone of 299 to the 10th.
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Old 12-01-2012, 11:14 AM   #176
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great minds!!
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Old 12-01-2012, 12:15 PM   #177
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Fun with math:

Total pounds lost since I started LC: 41.0
Sep 9.6
Oct 13.4
Nov 18.0

Initially projected weight loss (pounds per week): 2.5
Average weight loss (pounds per week) after 12 weeks: 3.41

Average weight loss per week while living in Washington: 3.05
Average weight loss per week since moving to Arizona: 4.15

Packages of ramen noodles eaten in 2011 - ~576 (+/- 24)
Packages of ramen noodles eaten since september 9th 2012 - 0

Average miles walked per day 2010-2011: 0.05
Average miles walked per day starting Monday: 1.5

Number of heart attacks since switching to a diet consisting primarily of eggs, bacon, and butter: 0
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Old 12-01-2012, 01:53 PM   #178
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I love your math! You should send it to Gary Taubes!
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Old 12-01-2012, 02:54 PM   #179
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What does 40 pounds look like, I wonder...




I guess it looks a lot like a shave and a haircut...

Last edited by Z; 12-01-2012 at 02:57 PM..
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Old 12-01-2012, 11:17 PM   #180
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Well, I finally cracked.

It was only a matter of time and the temptation was far too great for me. First of all, you have to understand my situation. I'm living in a craphole one-bedroom apartment with no couch or furniture., and nothing to do but sit on my bed and type on my computer. Even the Internet was on vacation today - Conversation was slower than usual on all three of my sites. I'd have gone out and done something, but I don't get my first check until Friday and rent was due today.

To make matters worse, I've eaten almost 2 dozen eggs this week. Not 'eggs and ___', either.

Just. Eggs. Morning noon and night.

Now, I have a high tolerance for poverty induced dietary monotony, but everyone has their breaking point, right? I couldn't take it anymore.

This is where the story takes a turn for the worse, those of you who have heart conditions, who are pregnant, or may become pregnant may want to avert your gaze.

I'd had it. I hammered feverishly on my keyboard, that ancient battlecry of culinary desperation:

"Delivery restaurants near me"

Google, as always, accepted my words with alacrity and met my challenge with celerity.

My loyal messenger of information informed me that Jimmy Johns is quite nearby - just around the corner. And they're still open. I immediately set myself to the task of ordering two sandwiches: One with triple salami and triple capicola and every vegetable they could muster. The other with a single portion of every meat on the menu.

The two biggest sandwiches on the menu. If I'm going to binge I'm going to do it right.

One small point.

They have an option called "unwich". Same toppings, in the same amount - but instead of bread, they serve the sandwich wrapped in a stout lettuce leaf.

Total damage:
13 carbs, bringing my daily total up to... 13 carbs.


Last edited by Z; 12-01-2012 at 11:29 PM..
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