Day 12 Review

It was a good day. The weather was beautiful. I attended my wife's family seimei (shimi). It is a yearly event held at the grave of her ancestors. Family gets together, cleans the grave site, pays tribute to their ancestors and prays for the future generations. About 25 people showed up, the women with food baskets.
I think I did well. I ate 20 pieces of food, about a third of what I would normally eat. I skipped a lot. These kinds of festivals are a killer. First, it is hard to keep track of what you ate. Second, the people are so kind and well meaning. They pass the food in front of you and it is hard to say no.
It is the twelfth day of my diet and I didn't exercise in the afternoon. I went for a long motorcycle trip up the coast. I skipped dinner to avoid the extra calories. I know it was a mistake but it is not a habit, so no worries. I accomplished 4 of my 8 daily goals. Tomorrow, I am going to go hard on the exercise.

Day 12 Excercise

  • 1 hour walk (brisk)
Total 1 hour

Day 12 Calories

  • yogurt and banana 180
  • box of raisins 90
  • 12 psc. deepfried veggie 1200?
  • 6 psc. pork 800?
  • ?finger food at a family celebration
  • 10 cups sanpin tea

Total 2270

Day 12 Weight 120kg (264lbs)

Day 11 Review

It was a good day - I kept all my goals. I did take some grief for not going out tonight. Even my wife told me to go have a few beers. As much as I would love to, I know a few will turn in to a dozen. It always has.
I do love pub life. Drinking lagers, talking with the boys, flirting with the girls, complaining about the music, arguing about nothing...I will never give it up. I just need to learn moderation.

Day 11 Excercise

  • 30 min walk (brisk)
  • 30 min weight training (squat and abs.)
  • 30 min elliptical machine

Total 1.5 hours

Day 11 Calories

  • yogurt and banana 180
  • miso tofu soup 300
  • sardines 150
  • hard boiled egg and carrot 120
  • apple 60
  • pork stir fry 600
  • chocolate bar 140
  • 10 cups sanpin tea

Total calories 1550

Day 11 120kg (264lbs)

Random Thoughts

I though about it in bed last night and I believe I was not completely honest in my previous post. It is true, our grocery bill has decreased by 50% since I started my diet. On reflection, I realize my calorie consumption has dropped about 75%. Though I am eating healthier the drop in our grocery bill is the result of eating less food.

The recession does not have any impact on my diet.

Random Thoughts

I was reading a post at diet blog questioning whether the recession is contributing to the obesity epidemic. All the comments were - no. Writing from Japan I have to agree. Our grocery bill has decreased by half since I started my diet . If you prepare your food at home and buy at the farmer's market, when you can, it is much cheaper than eating junk food.
I'm starting to think,it is easier to be on a diet in Japan than in the west. The selection of food is much less. Basic vegetables are quite cheap you are literally surrounded by healthy food and people who live healthy life styles. Just today, the neighbor girl brought over a huge bag of nira (Chinese leek) from her grandfather's garden.

Day 10 Review

It was a great day. Early morning walk and a late afternoon workout and I still had energy for a bicycle ride after getting the little guy washed and put to sleep. I really appreciate the support my wife gives me. I could not diet and blog my diet without her help.
I didn't eat my full 1600 calorie goal as I felt full after dinner. I am finding it near impossible to include my goal of 1.5 cups of konnyaku in my daily diet.
I am not looking forward to tomorrow. I haven't been out drinking with the boys in a few weeks. Already, there is a message on my phone not to "wimp" out tomorrow. They know I am on a diet but I didn't tell them my goal nor that I am blogging. There would be no end to the ribbing.

Day 10 Exercise

1 hour walk (slow)
30 min. elliptical machine
30 min. weight training (arms and chest)
30 min. bicycle ride (slow)

Total 2.5 hours

Day 10 Calories

  • yogurt and banana 180
  • soy milk 210
  • 1 hard boiled egg 80
  • miso soup 180
  • sardines 150
  • shrimp veggie stir fry 400
  • small salad, no dressing 100
  • 12 cups sanpin tea

Total 1300

Random Thoughts

Mr. Aso, Prime Minister of Japan made a political gaffe recently. Can you imagine a Western leader making any of the following comments;

"...asked why his tax payments should go to fund medical care for others who were more lax.."

"'My medical expenses are a lot lower because I walk and so on..."

"Why should I have to pay for those who just eat and drink and make no effort?"

My Japanese is very poor, If I understood the Japanese comments - many agreed with Mr. Aso. Those that didn't, questioned his sensitivity to people with serious life threatening illness.

You can read the article here.

Random Thoughts

I read an interesting post at Escape from obesity talking about addiction to refined foods with high sugar and carbohydrate content. I hope there is more research about food addiction. Can you imagine if we treated food addiction like the Canadians treat tobacco addiction? Below are pictures found on every single pack of cigarettes sold in Canada. Imagine if the Canadian government tackled obesity the same way they tackled smoking or drinking and driving?

I have seen posters of enlarged fatty hearts and livers in the doctor office in Japan. Public service announcements reminding people that being overweight kills. I will try and post some pictures next time I come across them.

Day 10 Weight 121kg (266lbs)

Random thoughts.

When I first came to Japan I was shocked at how small the portion sizes were. I remember a conversation I had with a friend who's sister married an American. She visited them and was shocked at how much weight her sister had gained. She was worried about her health and mentioned it. Her sister's reply was her husband and his family didn't care. So she let herself go.
On the same trip, my friend lost weight. The huge portion size made her physically sick - just looking at her plate, piled with food, she lost her appetite.
I sometimes wonder though, Japanese people do eat a lot - they just eat slowly. A meal can take hours. Lots of small dishes shared with the people at the table. I have learned to eat slowly. Not because it is healthy. I don't want to look like a pig, hogging all the food. I have also learned to chew my food more before swallowing. Again, not because it is healthy. I don't want to gross out my eating companions.

Day 9 Review

A really good day. I still have some aches but no worries. My knee is good. I find the elliptical machine beneficial. The store was out of goya. I had goya tea instead. Also, I didn't eat my goal of 1.5 cups of konnyaku. As long as I am making an effort I won't worry about it. I appreciate the advice of the holistic guy. I believe there is truth in what he recommended. However, counting calories, eating a variety of good food and exercise is the ultimate key.

Day 9 Excercise

  • weigth training (squat and abs) 30 min
  • elliptical machine - 1 hour
  • walk - 30 min

Total 2 hours

Day 9 Calories

  • yogurt and banana 180
  • tuna salad 350
  • spicy veggie soup 180
  • 1 raw carrot 40
  • 2 hard boiled eggs 160
  • big mixed salad 350
  • hamburger patty 260
  • cheese 60
  • 4 cups goya tea 12 cups sanpin tea

Total calories 1580

Day 9 Weight 121kg (266lbs)

Random Thoughts

My weight was up 1 kg today. I appreciate it is not a big deal. However, I get discouraged easily. One benefit of blogging my diet is it forces me to focus. Losing 42 kg (92lbs) in 3 months might be a bit ambitious. Of course I plan to succeed. If I don't but gave it my best try - I won't feel any shame. The most important thing is to stick to my plan.

I found a blog today. Weight loss success stories is a compilation of success stories and research that has been linked from different news sources. I love reading other's success stories.

Day 8 Review

It was a good day. I was a bit rattled that my weight went up 1 kg. I compensated by reducing my calories to 1200. I took the afternoon off and went to the gym. I had planned to go walking tonight but the little guy is sick and my wife is tired.

Day 8 Excecise

  • weights training dumbbells and circuit 1 hour
  • elliptic machine 30 min
  • walk (slowly) 30 min

Total 2.5 hours

Day 8 Calories

  • yogurt 90
  • soy milk 210
  • steamed salmon 180
  • miso veggie soup 120
  • veggie stir fry 360
  • banana 90
  • 2 raw carrots 80
  • box of raisins 90
  • 10 cups of sanpin tea

Total 1220

Day 8 123kg (271lbs)

Random Thoughts

My wife's 92 year old grandfather gave me some health advice the other day. "Hara hachi bu" means you should stop eating when your stomach is 80% full. It was sensible and sincere advice and I accepted it as such. I never told him, I have no idea when my stomach is 80% full and I never have. The older Okinawans live by this saying and are the longest living people in the world. Hard to argue with that.

Later hara hachi bu came up in a conversation I had with an old Karate and Zen Sensei. Like my wife's grandfather, he is worried about my weight. He told me the health benefit of hara hachi bu was only a side benefit. The real benefit was learning discipline and self control - step by step, day by day. He feels that is why hara hachi bu was traditionally taught.

Day 7 Review

It was a good day. I am feeling my age though. Two days of weight training and I'm really sore - but a good kind of sore. The swelling in my knee has gone down but it is still stiff. I don't want to push it. I will compensate with alternative excersices.

My calories and selection of food was really good today. Between the stir fry and soup I had 7 different kinds of vegetables. I find the konnyaku noodles are easy to eat in the soup. I also added gobo and konbu to the miso soup, it was delicious.

Day 7 Excercise

  • bicycle ride (slowly) - 1 hour

Day 7 Calories

  • yogurt and banana - 180
  • soy milk 210
  • pork veggie stir fry 600
  • cheese 130
  • box of raisins 90
  • sardines 150
  • miso veggie soup 300
  • 10 cups sanpin tea

Total 1660 calories

Random Thoughts

My wife was kind enough to change my blog around. She felt my layout and colors were too depressing. I am not new to dieting but I am new to blogging. I appreciate my wife's advice.

Day 7 Weight 122kg (268lbs)

Random Thoughts

I wrote before, that I have learned to be tolerant of rude people. When possible, I also politely distance myself from offensive people. Instead of getting worked up, I choose to feel sorry for them. I am told this is a sign of maturity but I think it is a coping skill.

Every fat person has different levels of tolerance. Comments or remarks that roll off my back, might destroy someone else. I have read a lot about what it takes to be successful at dieting. I believe it is over looked, having thick skin and sometimes a f@*# - off attitude, can be beneficial.

Day 6 Review

It was a great day. I cut down my calories to compensate for yesterday. My knee still kills so I went to the gym and did a strong upper body workout. I didn't meet my goal of 1.5 hours of exercises but I was active with my family. We went to an old Castle ruin.

I met my goal of 1.5 cups of konnyaku jelly. Eating the noodles made it very easy. I put them in my soup. I also re-learned something from my wife - chew your food and chew your food. Slurping the konnyaku noodles made her uncomfortable. Besides grossing her out she worries about my health. Konnyaku is basically zero calorie, pure fiber food. Though I feel fine, I have not had a bowel movement in two days.

Day 6 Excersise

  • gym (barbell and circuit) 1 hour

Day 6 Calories

  • yogurt 90
  • raw carrot 45
  • pork tenderloin 200
  • banana 90
  • soy milk 210
  • miso, konnyaku soup 120
  • 2 boxes rasins 180
  • apple 60
  • 12 cups of sanpin tea

Total Calories 995

Day 6 Wieght 123kg (271lbs)