And we’re back for yet another weekly update of Operation Healthy Dad. This week, we’re going to do something a little different than we have thus far, and for a reason that I think embodies the very spirit of this program, but before we get into that, how about another weight update, shall we?
Yesterday I did weigh myself on the official super secret weighing device, and the numbers were, well, a pleasant surprise. If you’ll remember, last week I had dropped about four pounds to bring my weight down to 270, though that was with some reservations. For one, the rate of weight loss for a single week was a little on the high side (optimal weight loss should be approximately 1-2 pounds per week). On top of that, I suspected that the increased weight loss was a result of dehydration which occurred the day before the weigh in. As such, I stepped on the scale with some trepidation. I did have some expectation that I might actually exhibit some minor weight gain as a result of rehydrating to the proper level. But as it turns out, the official week 10 number is 268, two pounds under last week’s weight.
Even more important, this brings us to eleven pounds lost since I started weighing myself on week 4, or an average of 1.8 pounds per week which is exactly in the middle of our band for healthy weight loss. This means that what we are doing is right on track. And why is OHD successful? Well, I think the answer might be found in this article my wife sent me last night.
The short answer as to why I am so excited about this program and why I have so much faith in its continued success in the near and distant future is because I designed it to be the very OPPOSITE of all the crash and fad diets that lead to the yo-yo phenomena discussed in this article. For the long answer, there are a number of specific attributes about OHD that I have built in that I believe allow it to succeed where other plans and programs fail.
- Minimizing the sacrifice: The fact of the matter is that the more of a sacrifice a diet feels like, the harder it is to maintain. Now some diets attempt to disguise this sacrifice with a little quid pro quo. They will lure you with a treat to make you think you aren’t sacrificing, but eventually this falls through. Think about every milkshake diet that lures you in with a “delicious shake”, or the famous low carb diets which attempt to ease the suffering by promising you can eat all the meat you want. Eventually, you start craving a loaf of bread, and once your will power runs out, so does the effectiveness of your diet. I take a different route towards minimizing sacrifice. Instead of bribing you with treats, OHD lets you work on your lifestyle at your pace, allowing you to make the changes that you need to make at the pace that your body is comfortable with.
- Building a strong multi-facted foundation: Most fad diets are one trick ponies, and once a pony fails you, the diet fails you. OHD works by offering up a number of body-shapers that work in tandem. It’s not necessarily important that you religiously adhere to all of them, but instead simply try your best to work on all the ones you can. As such, if you slip in one area it’s not catastrophic as there are plenty of other body-shapers to help you stay on your path to fitness.
- No guilt: Guilt can be a major demotivator. Once you’ve slipped up in a diet, the feelings of guilt and worthlessness and hopelessness that ensue can make it easy to quit and relapse. I’ve strived to make this diet as free from guilt as I can. Instead of seeing slip ups as failures, the philosophy behind OHD is to recognize areas where you are struggling and using those as points to assess and improve your lifestyle.
- Teaching you how to make decisions: This is probably the most important aspect of OHD. Instead of making you dependent upon some sort of specially formulated food, or pill, or habit, the whole point of OHD is learning how to make good healthy choices whenever your decision making skills are put to the test. Not only that, OHD teaches you to look critically at your lifestyle, identify areas that could use improvement, and then engage a plan to improve your behavior.
Now, as a result of a car accident last year, my wife and I got a new car that came with six months of Sirius satellite radio. After a little apprehension, I fell in love with the service although I’ve noticed that some of the commercials are more than a little whacky. One commercial I’ve heard a lot lately is for this Hollywood Cookie Diet. I kid you not, this guy gets on the radio and promises that if you eat four of his cookies for breakfast and lunch, you’ll lose all kinds of weight and it will be awesome. No, it’s not too good to be true, the announcer assures us.
But, of course, it is. That’s the point.
For one, the entire program relies upon you strictly adhering to the regiment prescribed by the diet. Four cookies for breakfast, four cookies for lunch, and a “sensible” dinner. So what happens the first time you just can’t overcome your hunger? What happens if you don’t really know how to put together a sensible dinner? Does this program instill in you the discipline needed to stay on the diet successfully?
And let’s say you do successfully stay on the diet until you reach your target weight. Now what? Does the Hollywood Cookie Diet teach you how to live after the diet, or does it expect you to continue buying cookies until you die, or worse, until the program goes out of business? Somehow, I doubt it.
Which brings us to this week’s body-shapers, or lack thereof. Being able to assess and adjust is key in the viability of OHD, and this week we’re going to take that to heart. There will be no new body-shapers this week, and that’s mainly because there are three that I’m having difficulties with and would like to reevaluate.
The first I want to look at is the nightly food cut off body-shaper. This has been one of the hardest body-shapers to maintain, and as such, the one I slip up on the most. On one hand, I have all but eliminated my midnight snacking, but I’ve also found that I will often get hungry shortly before going to bed and then once I’m in bed, I have little else to focus on besides how hungry I am. This is a problematic situation to be in, and so I am thinking about shortening the cutoff time (to as close to a half hour until bedtime), or to at least for the time being just ban midnight snacking.
Secondly I want to reevaluate the physical activity following a meal body-shaper. I don’t think this is a particularly stringent or taxing body-shaper, but it can be inconvenient, annoying, and easily forgotten, especially if you are like me and break your meals down into lots of smallish meals as opposed to three big meals. In those cases it can be so easy to eat, and then ten minutes later realize, oh man, I should be doing some activity right now. So I’m thinking about quantifying this body-shaper to make it a little easier on everyone, especially those of you with a really hectic schedule.
Finally, I need to look at more specifically defining the one scoop rule body-shaper. Partly to eliminate confusion in certain areas, and partly to accomodate my lifestyle a little better because I end up eating all meals but breakfast out of my backpack.
So no new body-shapers this week, but do take this time to assess how well you are doing on your body-shapers, and see if there are any improvements you can make. And I think that pretty much covers everything in this week’s OHD update. Have a good week, keep working at it, and always remember that being a healthy person doesn’t have to suck.