Where do I start?


A journey of a thousand miles starts with but a single step. While I already know the first step was starting this site because I am already finding my self thinking- What have I done?!?! That thought does reinforce what a good idea this is for me because I already feel the pressure not to back down.

I have received many good comments and suggestions here online and directly from people on the Craig’s List Diet section to which I posted as well. The most common theme of those posts is a need for a plan. Usually my plan is to at the least stop what I call instinctive eating. An example of this is that we’re bad in this house about keeping a dish of candy on the kitchen counter. I swear walking by the counter if like a food toll booth- except I get the chocolate token! Additionally we have trained ourselves over the years that night time TV time means snack time. That needs to end as well.

I have also been told that I need to eat a nutritional breakfast to get my metabolism going. That will be very difficult for me to do four days a week as I have to get up at 4AM for work and only have about ten minutes allotted for breakfast time. Usually it ends up with some cereal, pop tarts, yogurt… any ideas there?

As to exercise- I used to know a guy that said he used to get enough exercise going to the funerals of  his friends that exercised! 🙂

I have the option of joining a gym on site at work but whether I do that or not is up in the air. Finances are one reason behind this but walking in as the fattest man on campus may play into it a bit as well. At the least I need to get myself outside and start walking every day. I do have a good set of dumb bells at home so I may start using those as well. Any other thoughts or suggestions? For those that aren’t aware my work lasts 10 1/2 hours a day and is totally sedentary in nature so no help there.

I have also had it suggested that I join a mass marketed diet type group that provides your food and meetings for support. I’m not sure that would work for me financially and I am not a real warm fuzzy kind of group guy!

I’m about 24 hours out from starting this thing so any input or ideas would be helpful.

Additionally two other people have volunteered to take this opportunity to lose weight as a way to share my pain. Any other takers?


10 Responses to Where do I start?

  1. Jason says:

    If you’re rushed for breakfast, a protein shake is a good start. You can look up recipes for blending in other items such as oats to fill you up a little more. Pop tarts and yogurts are not a very good choice. Most yogurts are high in sugar and not worth the measly amount of protein they provide. If you like cottage cheese, or can learn to like it, then 1% lowfat or nonfat is a very good option. Also, a lean ham steak is not a bad option for breakfast either. Do you drink coffee with cream or sugar during the day? Those calories can add up fast so find a way to get rid of them if they are in your diet. Prepare your food the night before, that way you won’t end up spending time preparing your food in the morning. Do it right after dinner when you’re already full.

    You will definitely make much better progress if you can find a way to incorporate resistance training. Muscle is your best friend for increasing metabolism and burning fat. The reason most people fail at diets is because they try to lose weight by not easting and doing a lot of cardio. What ends up happening is they lose weight by losing muscle while they train their bodies to store fat more efficiently because they are too deprived of calories, and then when they start eating again they put it all back on and then some. Find a way to do some kind of weightlifting and do some cardio after weight training if possible, keeping your heart rate in the 120-130bpm range (brisk walk). You can do a lot with dumbbells, so if you are determined, you can definitely do this without dropping a bunch of money.

    How feasible is it for you to take a lunch box with you to work? You should be eating 5-6 times a day if at all possible, breaking up your food into several smaller meals. If you’re able to get out and walk everyday, do it! This is a war and you have to take every advantage you have and use it.

    BTW, you have checked with your doctor already, correct?

    Jason D.

  2. onemanoneview says:


    Your input is helpful and very much appreciated! As to coffee I drink a fair amount during the day but I already take it black- so that is a start I suppose.

    Protein shakes seem like a good idea for breakfast- I will have to look in to those. I suppose in the beginning I will need to ramp up my knowledge base and supplies for healthy alternatives such as that.

    I can bring what I’d like to work but the thought of eating more often but in lesser quantities is counter intuitive to me although I have heard that elsewhere as well. Are you suggesting fruits and things like that during the day?

    One of my work related difficulties will be the food culture there. Everything revolves around team lunches, breakfasts… I will have to train my co-workers as much as me that I can’t partake in the same way that I do currently.

    One question I have is related to eating at home. I don’t want to punish my family for my problems so do I just eat normal meals with my family in moderation or do I segregate my meals from theirs?

    Again- thank you for your input!


  3. Jason says:

    Black coffee is good! As far as protein shakes go, I would look for something where you can get a good 30-40g of protein from either whey or cassein, but not soy. One name brand that has pretty wide acceptance is Optimum Nutrition (ON). Good flavors and quality. I would stay away from the off the shelf grocery store shakes such as slimfast. Most of them are high in simple carbohydrates and weak on the protein quality and quantity.

    The reason why you want to eat more frequently is to keep your metabolism going. The longer you go without food, the more your body will think it ought to store the next meal as fat in case it doesn’t get to eat again. I try to plan three complete meals to bring with me to work. By complete, I mean meals that fall into my ratio of proteins/carbs/healthy fats. So around 10am or so I would have a cup of cottage cheese and a serving of oatmeal, then at lunch it would be 6oz salmon sandwich with a salad, then at 3pm I would have 4-6oz chicken breast with some fruit or veggies andmaybe some almonds. I eat dinner with the family about 6:30pm. Feel free to eat some fruit for health purposes, but don’t go crazy with it. It has a lot of sugar. Vegetables are always a good thing. Eat them as often as possible. I know, I know, why couldn’t it be chocolate instead?! 🙂

    I think if you explain to your boss and co-workers why your eating habits are different they will mostly respect and encourage you. If not, well, shrug it off and do what you gotta do.

    As far as meals with your family you would probably get different opinions on this but I would say eat with your family in moderation. If you are doing the other things right, there is no reason why you can’t eat with the family. Just be smart about it. Enjoy it as a reward for doing the other things right. That time together is important and you don’t want it to become a chore.

    Keep reading and researching, you’ll figure it out! Take care.

    Jason D.

  4. Dave says:


    Rick’s bro, Dave, here. Jason seems to have some good advice – not much I could add to it. As far as being the fattest man on campus, don’t worry about it. People don’t go to the gym because they’re already in shape, they go to get in shape. Take yourself seriously and others will as well.

    Learning about proper food consumption is THE best thing you can do for yourself. Read everything you can find, but remember, moderation is the key. Stay away from silly “no carb diets” and the like. 5-6 small meals a day, with each containing a bit of protein, is ideal. Yogurt, granola bars, lean meats (chicken, turkey), and yes, fruit. Stay away from simple sugars (soda, candy, icecream) and excessive amounts of bread.

    Exercise is very important as well, even if you only start with a brisk walk every day, or every other day. Muscle burns calories even at rest, so logically the more you have the more fat you burn. Good luck!

  5. onemanoneview says:


    First of all give Audrey a hug for me. Truly one of the cutest kids alive!

    Thanks for your input and advice. One question that i have in response relates to the comment about bread. I actually like 15 grain bread and was thinking that wouldn’t be too bad if I was to have bread. Is that a viable alternative?

    I clearly should have asked for all of this advice before I went shopping yesterday!


  6. Patrick says:

    I agree with everything that Jason has said, he has given some really good advice. I would just like to add a couple suggestions of my own, and the main thing I would like to add is a suggestion to cleanse your body. One of the reasons why people gain weight is because of poor diet practices (aka eating junk food all the time). Now as we all know, if you eat too much junk food and have no nutrition, you get sick.
    Now one of your body’s defenses against getting sick is to try to neutralize the non-nutritious elements in the food you are eating. Your body does this in mostly two ways. 1) Eliminates the harmful substances through your natural digestive system and flush it out naturally. 2) Produce fat cells to surround the harmful ingredients and isolate them from the rest of the body so that they can’t do any harm.
    Unfortunately for us, because of how much junk food is readily accessible in today’s market, we eat more junk than our bodies can naturally deal with so more and more our body has to use option 2. Now to get back to what I was saying about cleansing.
    Eating healthy and exercising is good and a very effective way of building muscle, maintaining current fitness levels, and with some people they lose some weight as well. But for people who are quite overweight (which I don’t know how much you are trying to lose or what your actual weight is) the weight doesn’t seem to come off quickly enough so they get discouraged and drop off their diet/exercise program.
    The only way that I have found to have long-lasting results when trying to lose weight is to incorporate a cleanse of your body into your regiment. All of the harmful ingredients are still in your body, and when you begin to exercise and start to lose body fat those ingredients are still in your body, causing your body to continue to devote energy to processing all of those harmful ingredients without letting them negatively affect you. But when you start off with a cleanse to rid your body of those harmful ingredients, you can then go about losing weight and focus on maintaining that weight loss rather than fight the common yo-yo of constantly gaining and losing weight.
    I did not write this as a means of pushing a sales pitch at you, but if the idea of a cleanse appeals to you, you can look at my website for more info at http://www.woodisinc.com.
    I did want to say congratulations on making the decision to change your life, and good luck with all you do.


  7. Dave says:

    Any kind of whole grain bread is much, much better than white bread. I usually buy a loaf every other week. Breakfast is a good time to have it (eggs and toast, etc.) as it provides ample energy to begin your day. For meals during the day I tend to stick with whole wheat wraps, because they aren’t quite as heavy.

    One thing that helped me out a lot in deciding on meal ideas when I first started was to see a breakdown of a healthy person’s daily menu. So I present to you a day in the life of Dave:

    Morning: 3-4 eggs and 2 pcs. toast, or: cup of oatmeal with protien powder and chopped apples, or: high protien cereal w/banana

    Mid-morning: Chicken, turkey or tuna on whole wheat wrap with lettuce/tomato, and piece of fruit

    Lunch: Usually a bit heavier than other meals, but moderate portion; this week is chicken alfredo casserole; granola bar

    Afternoon: Clif Builder bar (20 gr protien), and Clif Energy bar (10 gr); my pre-gym meal

    After gym: Protien shake: 12 oz milk, 4 oz juice, 1 scoop powder, tsp ground flax seed

    Dinner: Varies, but nothing too heavy right before bed

    Try to space the meals 2-3 hours apart if possible.

  8. Jessica says:

    First off, congratulations on commiting to improving your life.

    Second, If you are mostly sedentary and are just getting active again I would start off getting clearance from a doctor and try and get a referral to a nutritionist. They can set you up with goals for all your macronutrients (protein, fat, and carbohydrates) and give you ideas on how to take the diet you have now, and just use healthier substitutions to make this transition easy for you.

    It is definitely important to incorporate protein in your diet because it helps keep your blood sugar level which keeps you from getting hungry. Another thing to focus on is fiber. Whole grains, fruits, and vegetables are full of nutrients (vitamins and minerals), fiber, and water; all of which will keep you full longer and keep your body healthy.

    You should have at least 5-6 servings of fruits and vegetables a day. You cannot eat too much of it.

    Some easy changes:

    Butter/margarine–> Olive oil/vegetable oil

    Ground beef–> Lean ground beef (90% = 10% fat)

    Whole eggs –> 1 egg + 2 egg whites (your body needs cholesterol but if its something you’re going to eat more than once a week you want to keep the number of yolks you consume down.)

    Yogurt –> 1%-fat free Plain yogurt or low fat cottage cheese-look for low sugar varieties and add your own fruit and nuts

    White bread–> Multi-grain : at least 3-4 grams fiber/ serving

    Foods to incorporate into your diet:

    Beans-good source of vitamins, minerals, protein, fiber

    Salmon/cold water fish- great source of protein and rich in healthy fat (omega-3)

    Raw nuts – Almonds, Walnuts, etc… are great source of healthy fat

    Fruits/veggies!! -mix bananas and blueberries in oatmeal for breakfast. Apple slices + all natural peanut butter. Grilled sirloin steak over a bed of baby spinach, plum tomatoes, cucumbers, red onions, and a sprinkle of blue cheese. Take your pasta dishes you already make at home and add brocolli, asparagus, etc…

    I find it best to buy whatever is on sale and then try out new recipes with it. Experiment and have fun. Get your family involved too. Theres no reason why they should not be eating as healthy as you. Even if you are the only one who needs to lose weight, everyone will benefit from a healthier diet.

    Its almost impossible to not get enough protein in your diet. low fat dairy, whole grains, beans, soy (good source and much healthier for the most part than many meat options), and nuts all contain protein and other vitamins, minerals, fiber, and healthy fats that aren’t necessarily found in meat.

    Good luck and keep us all updated. -sorry the post is so long. I get a bit worked up when talking about nutrition…

  9. Tom says:

    Chet, If you want more fish in your diet I will catch them for you so you don’t starve! If you want to lift weights I’m available to help and if you want to join your gym I have a deal to offer you. I will pay your gym membership for every month you lose 8 pounds. Let me know if your interested via my work email. D-Day…………Diet Day!!!!!

  10. Cheryl says:

    I feel your pain. I started my new healthy living plan in January. I was sick to death of everybody telling me what a pretty face I have (and then pausing with the sentence). We all know that means fat for a woman. So I joined weight watchers. Men and women attend the meetings and weigh-in’s and so far, so good. I’m down 11 pounds in 6 weeks. Jump starting my metabolism was the biggest challenge. I wasn’t much of a breakfast eater, just coffee until lunch. Now I grab a banana or apple and a home-made blueberry muffin on the way out the door. For exercise, I walk around Baker Park every after noon with 30+ other motivated individuals. Any movement is better than sitting behind a desk all day and then going home to the TV.

    Good luck and keep up the good work. Take it one day at a time!

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