It’s time to eat cleaner

I wonder if the Cornhuskers would have a spot for a fat, old guy who could plug a big hole if he could just get up out of a three-point stance.

For all I know, the VH-1 reality series, “Celebrity Fit Club,” isn’t even on TV anymore.

But I used to watch the slow, which featured host Anthony Steven Kalloniatis, a comedian who is better known as Ant.  On the show, he often said: “The scales don’t lie.”

And neither will I. Today was final weigh-in day for the Y’s Weigh, a weight-loss challenge at the Muscatine Community Y. I can’t remember what I weighed in at, but I didn’t move the scales very much. My weight is almost identical to what it was in January.

If I want to be optimistic, there are two ways to look at this:

1. At least I haven’t gained weight after losing my job in February, which, to be honest, is a pretty big deal. I am a champion emotional eater and I am at least pleased that this little disruption in life didn’t completely derail me.

2. My clothes are fitting better and I’m pretty sure I’ve lost inches even if I haven’t lost weight — if such a thing is possible.

But I can’t be completely optimistic because I know all of my dark secrets, one of which I have decided to share.

As I said, if you looked up the term emotional eater, you might find my picture. I eat when I am angry, unhappy, stressed, anxious, bored, etc. And Sunday was a bad day. Rainy and cold, I was home alone and unable to do the things I wanted to do — get on my bike and go for a long ride.  So I binged. This is not something I do as a regular habit, but there is no other word for it. Sitting in front of the TV, watching a movie, I inhaled somewhere in the neighborhood of 5,000 calories.

I knew it was wrong even as I did it. And afterward, I felt physically ill. In fact, I didn’t eat again for nearly 24 hours.

Why tell everyone about this today? Well, writing about it and moving on seemed like a better response than beating myself up about it. So this morning, I woke up, went to Warrior Crossfit Muscatine for another really hard workout (read more about it here. I did it in 13:53) and then attended a cycling class at the Y.

At some point this morning, I remembered something I read over the weekend on Twitter, so, of course, I can’t find it now. But it was a tweet that said something like: Your body is your best food journal.

In other words, if you don’t eat healthy, there will be ample physical evidence. And the scales don’t lie.

As of today, my plan is to shake up my diet. I’m reaching the point where the soreness from Crossfit isn’t quite so bad and my recovery may be even a bit quicker. So it’s time to address what I eat, when I eat and how I eat. This is familiar territory. I’ve been down this road before.

Food journals have helped many people lose weight, but I’ve never been good at keeping one. The whole idea of weighing and measuring what you eat just doesn’t strike me as practical.  But I think I will use this blog to keep track of the kinds of food I am eating.

Diet seems like an easy thing: Eat fresh fruits and vegetables, plenty of whole grains and some protein. Eat food that is as close to its natural state as possible. The theory is easy, but the practice is much harder. But if I commit here,  maybe it will help me finally kick the habit of eating processed food.

My plan is to eat out a whole lot less and to cut back — if not outright eliminate — meat from my diet for a while. Maybe longer. I did this once before and lost a lot of weight. And I wasn’t working out anywhere nearly as hard then as I have been lately.

So I guess I’ll forget about Sunday and move on. Today is a new day. And so is tomorrow. If I string enough of those new days together, doing the things I know I should do, I can get and keep my weight at the level I want.

In the language they use at Crossfit, I guess I’m vowing to eat clean. And it will be harder to do than any of the killer workouts they’ve put me through.

Lunch on Monday

On today’s menu: Like I said, I skipped breakfast today, which will not be a regular habit.

For lunch, I ate a bowl of couscous with stir-fried veggies and beans.

And that’s where I’m at for now. The real test, will take place after tonight’s group bike ride.