A Weighty Topic -- 06/21/00

My morning routine has been to stumble downstairs, feed the cat, start a pot of coffee and, while the coffee was dripping, I would do a quick check of e-mail. Bev Sykes usually has her entry up very early (since she lives in California, she must post her entries around one or two a.m. for me to find them at 5:30 a.m. Eastern time) and if I have enough time I will also check her entry. The school year is now over -- my daughter graduated high school this past Friday, Monday was my wife's last day of teaching for the year, and my son had his last final exam on Tuesday -- but I still have to get up and go to work. So this morning I went to Bev's page and found that she is talking about starting a diet to lose weight.

This resonated with me because (as you may have seen me complain from time to time on this site) I need to lose some weight also. Throughout most of the nineties it seems as if I would put on ten pounds over the winter and then lose it by summer... most of this based on the amount of running I was doing. I suppose I should have said through the late eighties and early nineties because since moving to Rhode Island (fall '95) I have never brought my mileage up to former levels. I did run the Blessing of the Fleet 10 mile run in '96 and '97 but back in upstate New York, I used to run a 20k (twelve and a half miles) about every two years and a 15k almost every year, plus more 5k and 8k and 10k races than I do here along with the training runs that need to be done... So I run far fewer miles in training and the few races I do run in are done at what I once would have dismissed as being a jogging pace rather than a real running pace. The result of this... my weight keeps creeping up each year and that extra weight tends not to come off.

This morning there was a health screening at work -- blood pressure, cholesterol, blood glucose, etc. -- so I went and got checked out.

Good news! If I can manage to drop just five pounds then all I need to do to get an acceptable Body Mass Index is to gain four and a half or five inches in height.

My weight has been fluctuating between 204 and 208 recently -- at one point during the winter I hit 210! -- but I have not been able to get it down below 204. I used to get upset when my weight would hit 194 or so, that was usually enough to trigger dieting and increased exercise. That would be January post-holiday maximum weight. I would be down to the mid 180's by this time of year... and even then I would think that I really should try to get under 180. I never made it to six feet tall, maxed out at five eleven and a half, and I've probably shrunk enough with age (that does happen, you know) that I'm just five eleven now. So to drop from the Risk Zone back to the Normal Zone on the Body Mass Index chart, at 6 feet I should weigh 177 pounds and at 5-11 I should weigh 172 pounds. I used to weigh in that range -- maybe thirty years ago?

My Results

Blood Pressure138/85
Total Cholesterol160
HDL49
TC/HDL Ratio3.3
Glucose67
Hand Grasp Strengthaverage
Flexibilitypoor

I ran three miles Sunday on the beach, I did nothing on Monday, and I ran three miles early last evening after I got home from work. Tonight's the weekly family running meet at URI. Sean has expressed an interest in running the mile with me there, so I guess we will do that. After the mile run they also have a three mile and a five mile run. I might also run the three miles after the mile... or maybe not, and just try to get out for a run in the morning?

Bev says she is going to post information and results in her journal. I think maybe I'll follow her lead and do the same thing. I'm writing this at lunchtime at work; I'll have to get an official starting weight sometime tonight.

As Hamlet says:

O, that this too too solid flesh would melt


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