Monday, November 11, 2013
The making of an action hero pt36
; The holidays are coming. I say that with a measure of bittersweet reflection. My parents made sure that I remember Christmas and Thanksgiving as a magical time. Maturity has taken some of the shine off the season as wondrous experiences are balanced by real-world concerns. Still, I’m looking forward to this holiday season more than others. Something about this year feels different. Maybe it’s because I have a degree of satisfaction with my job. Maybe it’s something to do with the Brunette and I hosting Thanksgiving for our families. For the first time ever, we’re going to spend Christmas with friends. Maybe it’s having most of our gifts lined up already. Maybe it has something to do with our larger friends group turning to crafty gifts as opposed to throwing $20-$50 around in interchangeable presents. I don’t know. Things just feel more like the holidays are coming—in a good way. Who knows, maybe it’s the prospect of all the little kids at our family gatherings. The other side of that coin is that I’m still looking at my normal holiday malaise—diminished but imminent. For all that fall and winter are my favorite seasons; November and December usually see me a bit less motivated, a bit grumpier, a bit darker, and a bit less desirous of company. I’ve been told that I likely have S.A.D.—which is why I have the light box by my computer now. Whatever the reason I’ve started to notice my supply of “cope” and “drive” going down. Things I used to do on reflex now take effort such as making the health shakes the night before, working on my computer conversion, creative writing, exercise, not-going-to-the-work café, and minimizing snackage. I’ve been successful but not without watching the little things start to fray at the edges. Last week I ate at the work Café twice. Normally I’d call this laziness, but in this case I think it’s something different. I’ve been cutting down on my lunch portions from 3-4 moderate items to 2 items. By noon my stomach is ravening. The hunger isn’t the healthy kind—where you feel your body slimming down as your stomach empties. I was just really hungry. So, I’ve added a bag of salted trail mix back into the work meal with an occasional cheese stick for good measure. Today’s test run left me with no cannibalistic urges. So I think this one’s a winner. I don’t need a lot to eat, but I do neat several distinct items spread between 9am-12pm to tame the beast. After that a handful of unsalted almonds and a couple glasses of water suffice. This weekend was not good for the diet. Saturday morning we had breakfast with Squish and Deathquaker. I had a three egg plate with bacon, grits, harvest toast, a glass of orange juice, and coffee. I could have done without the grits—something I’ll remember for next time. This was high quality food with little grease so while it wasn’t truly healthy I don’t feel bad about it. Next we went to a friend’s home to playtest his d20 modern variant system. One of my unspoken rules is that when you’re going into someone else’s home, you should bring something to share with the group—see my previous posts about food as bonding agent. We brought fresh salsa and some upper end corn chips because they were available when we were grabbing breakfast, I love salsa, and I don’t over indulge on said snackage. One of our peers had the same idea and brought a double box of Duncan doughnuts. I haven’t had doughnuts in over a year. After several, seriously who can eat just one?, I don’t feel like I was missing much. Supposedly there’s a gourmet doughnuttery near us called the fractured prune that achieves levels of perfection otherwise inaccessible by mortals. I’ll have to try that out some time, but not any time soon. Dinner was three pieces of pizza. I managed to refrain from going overboard—hot Italian pie has its draw but not in the way it used to. I dunno, looking at the quality of my intake I lost. Looking at the circumstances surrounding that intake I think I did pretty well. We surely didn’t take much convincing, but then we were somewhat forced by circumstance into all of these meals. I’m not going to hide behind excuses, but I do like the fact that in the face of near limitless junk, I kept the damage down. Sunday started with a health shake and coffee. E.V. came over and helped me with my club video. Squish and Corc had done their best in the past, but I needed a more experienced hand. The steel club workout is as much dance as exercise. You need to get the motions right in order to get the most out of it. So, turns out I was working hard, but not doing a very good job at staying true to form. E.V. straightened me out. I’d be pissed about it, but after several months of consistent dedicated exercise, I know I can fix things and up my game. It will take work, but I’m not afraid of a little sweat. I’ve proven to myself that I can learn—that I will succeed. Knowing that I will win makes the prospect of re-learning three month’s worth of labor not quite so daunting. Later I walked up to the grocery store with black trench coat streaming in the fall wind. My boots struck the pavement decisively. I felt stronger and more present. The weekend was a failure diet wise. But I validated some strengths and learned some important limitations. That’s good enough for now. Today’s weight: 282.2 Breakfast=A health shake and coffee. Work meal=a turkey wrap, an apple, and a bag of salted trail mix. Dinner=left over Ethiopian chicken and rice. Dessert=a glass of chocolate mint wine.