Friday, September 26, 2008 at 3:19 AM
This year, for the first time, I not only made a New Year’s Resolution but also published it here on January 3. I did so because I thought reporting on my efforts to fulfill this particular resolution might inspire others to fulfill theirs.
Accordingly, here’s an excerpt from that original article, followed by today’s update:
I have always been blessed with good health – especially since I began swimming competitively at age 9. Therefore, I’ve never felt the need to join the madding crowd of yo-yo dieters making New Year’s resolutions to lose weight.
But that all changed recently when my doctor summoned me for a consultation on the results of my latest physical exam. In short, she informed me that I was fat and needed to lose weight … 40 pounds to be exact.
Far more troubling, however, is the self-delusion that allowed me to gain 40 pounds (up to 210) and still think that I was every bit as fit as I was when I weighed 170.
Meanwhile, my cholesterol is now over 300 and I’m presenting all of the early-stage symptoms of kidney and heart problems that took my Mummy’s life at the unforgivably young age of 64.
Never mind all of the nagging middle-age pains this extra weight has caused, but which I kept chalking up to after-workout burn. And to top it all off, I’m going blind….
Therefore, I have resolved to lose all 40 pounds by this time next year.
Finally, I had my first prostate exam. I was so traumatized, however, that I can’t even imagine having another one for at least another 10 years! (But seriously guys, if you’re over 40, I urge you to discuss the importance of prostate exams with your doctor.)
In March (when I published my 1st Quarter Report), I weighed 203, which was down from 210 in January. On June 27 (when I published my 2nd Quarter Report), I tipped the scale at 192. Not bad, but this means that I was 2 pounds short of my mid-year goal of losing 20 pounds….Today I tipped the scale at 189, which, frankly, is a miracle considering how much I ate this summer…especially at two family weddings.
(Incidentally, since I’ve always exercised regularly and eaten very healthy foods, my weight loss is due almost entirely to portion control; i.e., I still eat the same things only in smaller amounts – except when I fall off the wagon as I did this summer.)
In March, my total cholesterol was 270 (LDL: 190, HDL: 64), which was down from 325 in January. On June 27, my cholesterol was 223 (LDL: 133, HDL: 77). Today my cholesterol is 241, which, alas, is back at a high-risk level (LDL: 144, HDL: 69).
In March, my blood pressure was 125/70, which was down from 135/80 in January. On June 27, it remained essentially the same. Today my blood pressure remains the same.
That’s enough information about me. I shall publish my 4th Quarter (and final) Report on January 2, 2009. How are you coming along?
NOTE: We are suffering a pandemic of obesity (and related complications) worldwide. Therefore, I urge you to commit to annual physical exams (complete with tests for HIV and other STDs). And this applies especially to black men in Africa and the Caribbean where there seems to be a cultural belief that one visits the doctor only for emergency care.
After all, I’m a living example of the fact that, despite daily exercise, we are all vulnerable to that silent killer – CHOLESTEROL.