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Just got back from The Doc’s office — or rather, I just got back from the celebratory burrito lunch that the The Fiancée and I splurged on after leaving The Doc’s. I am officially out of the purge stage of my diet, which means I can eat anything I want again.

For a given value of “anything”, of course.

Basically, I have to change how I eat: Instead of skipping breakfast, having a 14:00 lunch and a big dinner at 19:00, I should be having three small meals plus two snacks per day, in order to keep my body burning calories and not squirreling them away as love handles. Breakfast within 30 minutes of waking up is essential to get the metabolic engine primed. Every meal or snack must, must have a protein element, preferable a proportionately large one. Carbs are still to be kept low. Simple sugars are to be avoided, starches kept to a minmum. Fruit is ok. So is coffee… so long as I don’t go back to my misguided triple-triplin’ ways.

I specifically asked about beer. A beer is acceptable… if I had some exercise that day. Exercise doesn’t need to be strenuous, per se, but it does need to be real; a brisk half-hour walk with the dog is ideal. I suspect I’m going to view a beer or a small glass of booze in the evening as my reward for being diligent in my daily exercise.

Essentially, I’m going to try and keep my caloric intake lower than my Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) in any given day, and intake as small a proportion as possible as carbs or sugars. Your BMR is how much energy you burn in a day if you do nothing but stay in bed and breathe: as a 6’2″ 34-year-old weighing 316lbs, mine is about 2400 calories per day. If I stay below that, make most of my calories come from protein and not carbs, and combine that with a mindful awareness of what I’m eating and exercise, it should be easy to burn off 1-2 lbs a week for the forseeable future. Eventually, my weight will stabilize and I’ll be at my optimum.

The plan from here on in is simple: eat foods which are low on the glycemic index, make sure I get plenty of exercise, and eat smaller meals more often so my body doesn’t panic and start storing spare calories as fat. So natural foods, sugar-free everything, wraps instead of sandwiches, fruits instead of candies, and brisk exercise every day: I think I can manage that.

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