I remember the night well. It was June 9, 2003. The sun hung low over the third base line and the Frisco Rough Riders were handily beating the Midland Rockhounds in their second meeting of the minor league baseball season.
My butt was planted firmly in my seat and I ate more than my fair share of cheese nachos chased by a hot dog, Dr. Pepper and a Miller Lite. A family friend, sitting beside me, said between bites of his barbecue sandwich, "I'll give you three weeks, one month tops."
"For what?," I asked.
"At the new gym. I bet money you can't stick with it for a month."
Yeah, "whatever" is what I said but I wondered if maybe he was right? Since leaving the Army in 1988 I had joined three different gyms at various times and within a couple of months dropped the memberships. "Just not enough time. Poor instructors. No value... too expensive. Inconvenient location," is what I told myself. Or, there was my favorite, "Things aren't THAT bad. Everything is still good." Uh hummmm... that was up until a few days before the baseball game when the Good Doctor Jerry gave me a report from my latest physical exam. My cholesterol was up... way up. Blood pressure was high too. Lipids were out of whack. Prostate enlarged... again. A simple flexibility test brought sweat to my brow.
My body fat measured 28% and I weighted 188 lbs. (85.28 kilograms). However, it was the heart stress test that defined the issue: I was 42 years old on the calendar but metabolically speaking I was 53.
But, not even that was motivating enough to sign a membership at the new Gold's Gym near my office. Nope. What did that was something new hanging in my closet. You see, not long before my physical exam I bought a pair of 40" jeans to replace the pair of 38's that had become a wee bit tight in the waist. I put the new set on and...
to get the top button fastened.
Ut oh! Levi Strauss; I've got a problem.
Can you say, epiphany?
The morning after the baseball game I reported to the gym and some four years later I continue to go several days a week. Sometimes twice a day. Also, shortly after first stepping into the gym I learned of a new diet going around the best seller's list: Southbeach. I bought the book, embraced the parts of the diet that worked for me, and made sense to me, and quit my "drive-through" diet tendencies. And, THAT my 'BoomerNation friends is what made the difference. Exercise (mostly strength training) AND a proper diet was the formula for me.
That was four years ago. Four healthy years ago. (What brought me to triathlon is another story for another time.)
Now it's the start of the non-race months meant for repairing and preparing for the next race season and I'm jumping into a new challenge: The Though Th3 Wall Challenge. It will motivate me to maintain the physical gains of this year and set me up for a strong and healthy 2008.
Yesterday I stepped on a fancy-schmancy scale at my gym that does the heavy math and spits out all kinds of 'Boomer Body Data. Here's how the BBD looked:
I weigh 162.8 lbs. (76.29 kilograms)
My body fat percentage is 9.2%
My resting daily caloric burn is 1,670 calories
Each week I'll step on the fancy-schmancy scale and get the latest BBD and post it here and at the website set up by SuperHero Ben at BuckeyeOutdoors.com
What's my goal you might ask? It's to drop 7 pounds (3.18 kilograms) and reduce body fat to 8.7%