Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Today is my Birthday

Yes, today is my birthday.  For most of us, we look forward to our birthdays.  I certainly do, although not as much as I used to.  Another birthday means we are another year older.  The older you get, the more you realize you have already had the majority of your birthdays.  That is certainly true with me.  I am 62 years old today.  There is certainly nothing wrong with being 62.  I believe I am a somewhat wiser person now.  I certainly have more knowledge.  I always tell my students that if they are not learning, they are dead.  I am always learning, so I am not dead yet.

Being 62 makes me think of my parents.  They both died in their early sixties.  I am not worried about that from a genetic point of view.  I am adopted, so I am not worried about dying in my sixties because they died in their sixties.  I do realize however that I can still die in my early sixties if I don't take care of myself.  I must do something about that.  I am overweight, and I am out of shape.

What am I going to do about it?  Well, I am not going to go on a crash diet to lose weight.  I have heard too many stories about people losing weight and then putting the weight back on.  I have lost weight before, but after I reached my weight goal, I stopped the diet (which was really just eating better with more fruits and such) and went back to my old eating habits. 

Actually, I have already started to make some changes in my diet.  A couple of days ago, I bought some navel oranges.  I will eat them instead of eating cheese sticks or Oreo cookies for snacks/deserts.  Yesterday I saw a piece on the Today Show about eating whole wheat bread.  I know whole wheat bread is good for you and white bread is not so good for you.  The trouble about white bread is that it tastes so good, especially when you put butter (not real butter, but soft margarine) on it and bake it in the oven.  I bought some honey wheat bread, and it actually does taste good.  I had it this morning with my breakfast.  I also have some yogurt in my fridge, so I will eat more of that for snacks.  These changes are not major in scope, but I want to make changes that have a good chance of sticking.  If I make these changes as a lifestyle change and not think of them as going on a diet, I hope I won't drop them when I reach my weight goal like I did before.  One might say I am playing a mind game with myself.  However, if I really want to make it out of my sixties, I have got to make changes in my diet.  As I continue to ponder my diet, I am sure I will be making more changes to my diet.  I feel good about the changes I have already made.  They are small changes, but you have to start somewhere.

Now, what about exercising?  I have to do that too if I want to lose weight and be in better shape.  I am not so sure how to approach this.  Exercising is not my favorite thing to do.  You get out of breath, and it can be hard to do.  I know I can at least start taking walks.  I am certainly able to do that, and it does not cost anything like belonging to a gym does.  What would help me to do that is having a walking buddy, a person who encourages me, a person whom I would also encourage.  I would feel bad if I missed a walking session with my walking buddy, so I would more likely do the walking if I had a walking buddy.  Until I do find a walking buddy, I will just have to do it on my own.  I just have to remember why I am walking (and changing my diet), to live a longer life and a quality life.    

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