It’s official: I’ve lost 3 pounds this month, which, at the time of this writing, still has a few days remaining. I want to share my great feeling of accomplishment.
Now, if you want to be a Negative Nancy and proclaim that 3 pounds is not so much for a whole month, well, think about this, buddy. Can you eat a 48-ounce (or 3-pound) steak? I didn’t think so.
Now that I’ve cleared up how impressed I am with myself, I want to explain that when I started this effort I jumped right into dealing with my food groups: Canned, boxed, bagged, jarred, bottled and frozen. (I saw this food group line somewhere else and liked it.)
There has been good and bad stuff along the way to 3 pounds and probably 4 by the end of the month.
The good part is that no matter how many times I got on my scale this morning, it still showed a 3-pound weight loss. I was euphoric. I wanted to dance and spike a football.
Then there’s the other part.
The other day I was in this huge health club. This place is so big, it’s almost like a planet. Young exercise warriors know where I’m talking about.
I had not been in a health club in many years. Back when I was a regular, I played pickup basketball and ran for 40 minutes to an hour on the treadmill. Every now and then, I would get on the weight machines.
I also noticed then something that would rattle me about my future. There were these older guys in their dull gray or nondescript warm-ups and old-style sneakers, huffing and puffing while walking at 2 mph on the treadmill. The expressions on some of their faces would cause me momentary concern. It was not a good look.
Adding to the “not a good look” would be headbands that some of them wore. Yikes!
Even more, many of their bodies had succumb to “done lapped over,” the street name signifying that a person’s stomach has lapped over the waistband of their pants. I know you’ve seen it. It’s a common among all races, sexes, ethnicities and political persuasions.
I felt badly for those mature folks.
Well, guess what. I decided to take a creative photo of my legs and feet moving along on treadmill. The photo came out fine and I placed it on my Facebook site. But there is a sad ending to this photo.
When I aimed my smartphone to take the photo, a woman on the treadmill next to me started to smile. Shoot, I didn’t notice anything funny. Then it struck me. I had leaned over a quite a bit to take the shot of my feet. My goodness, was I a victim of “done lapped over?” I had to laugh a little myself when I thought about it.
That’s when it struck me. I am the old guy that I was concerned about so many years ago. I then noticed my attire. I had on a mostly blue Southern University polo shirt, non-matching color warm-up pants and sneakers as wide as pancakes, so the balls of my flat feet can be comfortable.
After taking inventory of my attire, I swore to myself I will never wear anything like that combination again.
But, weight loss is not all about treadmills and snazzy workout gear, it’s about eating the right stuff. I can say without challenge, that I am tired of grilled chicken and cabbage. I had that three days this week. I also had salads and let me admit, I had two links of low-fat boudin. I kept telling myself it was low-fat.
To that point, I closed out Tuesday evening with one of those tall hamburgers that has knife down the middle because you have to cut it in half so that you can bite into it. Before you think badly of me, I only ate half. I finished it off the next day.
As I write this column I am staring at a can of sardines for lunch. The ingredients include just sardines, spring water and no salt. This may not end well.
Say what you want, but I am off to a great start. I think about 4-5 pounds a month will be just dandy. And if you are a Debbie Downer, let’s think about it. Can you eat an 80-ounce steak? I didn’t think so.
Email Edward Pratt, a former newspaperman who writes a weekly Advocate column, at email@example.com.