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The Diet: part 1

So...I'm sort of hesitant to do this. Not just because I'm not a nutritionist or a physician, but because I feel like my journey isn't about what I eat. But I'd be lying if I said my diet wasn't a tool in the toolbox. And...the question I get the most often is "what are you doing to lose this weight?"

Its funny why I get this question too, often times its general interest, it's people looking for guidance or ideas. Frequently it's people trying to ferret out what I'm doing wrong, or what I could be doing better. Most of the time when a person asks you a question about your diet...it immediately becomes about them, about their insecurities and their frustrations. Frankly that's entirely the reason why I am going to discuss the diet. Part of the reason I'm being as visible as I am is to help people who need to know that they aren't alone in the way they feel. I want as many people as I can reach to know that I know what their insecurities do to them and what their frustrations feel like. We aren't alone, even when we feel like our bodies are pushing the rest of the world away.

So with that:

Diet. I hated that word. Diet to me is My mom eating appetite suppressants or Margaret Cho eating nothing but persimmons and then crapping herself. Diet to me is weight watchers meetings which are a very unique kind of hell. Diet to me is "cheating" and trying to find ways to make the food you want and strip away the calories, all of which turns it into food you don't want but are "allowed" to eat. Ultimately what diet meant to me, though, is failure. Not only did you fail to keep up with the expectations of society that you will eat healthful nutritious foods that keep you slim and trim and sexy for all to see, but you will fail at trying desperately to course correct and then afterwards be worse for it.

I've read that Weight Watchers measures it's success rate by the number of people who are able to lose 5 - 10% of their body weight and keep it off for 1 to 5 years. They have about a 5% "success" rate. This means that 95% of the people who sign up for it are not going to lose 5 -10% of their body weight or keep it off for more than a year. I don't know if these numbers are true or not, but anecdotally i can tell you for me, it is totally true. I lost 27 pounds once with weight watchers,gained it back plus...probably another 40, lost 15 again, gained another 20. Thats a net gain of 60 pounds. I watched my weight sky rocket. Like the other members of the 95%, it was totally an unsustainable model for me.

The worst part for me was the meetings. Soul crushing. It's like a board meeting at Enron or Bear Stearns. The whole collection of people trying to figure out ways to cook the books and game the system. "If I weigh myself just before lunch I weigh less than i do after lunch". "If I freeze fat free sugar free whipped chemicals between graham crackers its JUST LIKE, EXACT IN EVERY DETAIL, A MIND BLOWING CLONE LIKE REPLICA OF A CHIPWIIIIIIIIIIIICH"!! "a whole box of *insert "diet" cookies here* are only 6 points!" "Microwave Popcorn, is like Jesus to me."

Okay so that's overstated. See, I am a bit of a foodie, I don't believe in sacrificing flavor for caloric smoke and mirrors. Also, Nutrasweet and all those fake sugars are just bad. I'd rather be fat than have holes in my brain, which is precisely what they do over time. So I more or less became skeptical, putting it kindly, of all diets. Most of them have little or no basis in fact, even good ones, like the ones based off the China Study...2 of the three scientists who worked on that study disagree with the conclusions of the third, the third got the book deal though...so history is written by the winner. But there are a lot scientific facts out there, a lot of small studies and experiments and ideas that work, every time they are tested, they work.

For me though, finding a diet that works, was more about finding something, some way of eating that spoke to me, that addressed my failures and spoke to my weaknesses. If I was the type of person who could eat nothing but persimmons and not crap my pants and live a vibrant happy life doing that and never be racked with the feelings of abject failure that diets give me, then that is what I'd be doing. But I'm not. I'm not the guy who can eat a snack pack of sugar free yogurt and a serving of berries and a slice of lunch meat. I'm not that guy, I'm Me. And I found the perfect diet for me because it changed my p.o.v. and stopped me from thinking of A diet and started me thinking of MY diet. That was the biggest hurdle: stepping out of my own way. I needed to find a diet that spoke to my skepticism, that remedied all the flaws I saw in other diets, and most importantly that helped me address my weaknesses on a time table I could live with.

That diet is the Slow Carb diet as outlined in the 4 hour body by Tim Ferris.

"The Diet" is going to be an ongoing segment of my blog. I'm going to go into details, including my misgivings and my successes. I'm going to include specifics about myself my weights and measures, the various changes i've noticed in myself physically. I'm going to talk about Tim Ferris, I'm going to do all of that. But before I do, it's important you guys have a history of where I'm coming from and where my head is at. I'm not endorsing this diet for everyone. But for me, it's working. It's working brilliantly and I have never been happier with myself in almost every aspect of my life.

Also comments are always appreciated, but understand I'm doing this with the approval and monitoring of the ever-awesome "Dr. Mike" and he thinks I'm fine. So, just carry that fact with you into the comments section.

Any questions you have though, and I mean pretty much any, I will answer if I can.

So stay tuned true believer. Excelsior.

Comments

  1. I've watched you try several diets. Honestly, I doubted all of them - partly for the same reasons you listed (they were tricks), partly what I knew about those interesting small studies & partly b/c they just didn't seem "Cory." This slow-carb diet, though. It's different. It seems "Cory." I've noticed when you've lost weight before, but, well, you really didn't seem healthier. Now, it is clear how well this is working for you. Not just in the food you eat, but in other ways as well, stuff we've discussed in person. I'm really glad you found something that works for you. I love that you, to paraphrase you, are giving a damn about yourself.

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