So Hows the Diet?

As of now, I am completing my 3rd week of the 30 day Real Food Reset. This is the third time I am undertaking this diet in the last 6 years, I am pretty clear on what I need to eat. Though it is not always easy.

What were/are my Goals?

When you undertake any plan like this, there have to be goals. Why the hell am I doing this to my body? To my family?

  1. To Lose some weight – I wanted to go on the diet because I felt fat. I was holding steady between 215-220 lbs. At 6’2″ tall, this does not appear bad. But I could feel it. I felt it in my joints. I felt it in my waistline. I had a number of pairs of pants and shorts that did not fit. Some of my large sized T-Shirts were tight. I had underwear that bound up in the wrong places. I wanted to fit again. Ideally, I wanted to lose 20 lbs by the end of the diet.
  2. To feel younger – I do not look my age thankfully. I was just at the Doctor’s office in March. He checked me over and stated, “you definitely do not look or have the health of a man of 50.”  So that is good. BUT!!!! Every morning I was taking 2 Ibuprofin tablets to take the edge off. I have bad knees. Walking down the steps in the morning, I was having to hold on to the railing to steady myself and to provide support for my creaking, aching knees. Some days I just felt old – too tired or too achy to want to move. I would get out of the car and feel like I was walking like an old man – stiff and limping.  I hate being tied to medications to get through the day.
  3. To be Healthier – Part of my plan with the expanded garden was to have fresh fruits and vegetables. But other times when I have grown fresh vegetables, no one will eat them. I wanted to be in the groove of things when food started coming up. What do you do when you have 50 zuccinis and 70 cucumbers sitting on your counter – across the kitchen from baskets full of green beans, tomatoes and peppers? So this is kind of a getting ready phase. I wanted to be used to eating fresh fruits and vegetables. And my recollection from the past was that I ate a lot of fresh, whole foods.
  4. Change Some Bad Eating Habits – Over my life, I have developed a number of what I would call good eating habits. They are choices I made than incorporated into my everyday diet that I believe lead to better health. These include:
    1. I Do Not Eat Beef – that is cow meat. I stopped eating it back when i was racing bicycles because it used to make me gain weight. I had tried being a vegetarian, but that lasted a month. it was too difficult to keep up with. But I retained the ban on beef. After a couple years, I lost the enzymes to digest it. So not I not only dislike the taste, but it also makes me feel ill.
    2. I Do Not Add Sugar to anything –  Coffee, tea, cereal This started back in 1985 when I went away to college. I did not want to gain the Freshman 15, so I enacted a number of rules. Sugar in the coffee was one of the biggies. And it has expanded from there.
    3. I Avoid All Artificial Sweeteners – They are bad. Bad chemicals that are bad for you. Saccharine/Sweet & Low, Aspartame/Nutrasweet/Equal, Sucralose/Splenda. I stopped these back in about 2012 for all the right reasons.
    4. I Do Not Drink Milk – Every morning I used to drink a glass of Milk and a glass of Orange Juice. When I stopped to think about it, i was adding about 500 calories to my day that I did not need. So I broke that habit. I do not have a problem with Dairy, or milk in foods. i just avoid that extra calorie bomb every morning.
    5. Eating After 8:00 – This was a tried and true rule I learned while bike racing and trying to maintain weight. Eat early enough that your body can metabolize it before bed.

All that being said I have enough bad habits.

  1. Ice Cream – I love Ice Cream. And when I want it, little things like my eating after 8:00 rule go out the door. And is one scoop ever enough? No!
  2. Compulsive Snacking– My rule of thumb is that if I did not start eating, I will not keep eating. One little bite is never enough. Chips, cookies, M&M’s, pretzels. you name it. By the time I am done, you can usually count the calories up to equal a full meal
  3. Sports Energy Drinks – I do not generally drink soda. And I never drink Diet soda. But I am drawn to sports energy Drinks. Monster and Rockstar are my favorites. But like my Compulsive habit, if I do not start, I am good. I have found that when I start drinking them, it will be daily. And I can follow history to tell me that when this “habit” begins, it will end with a total ban on my part because I have gained weight. This diet cycle proves that true again.
  4. Caffeine and Alcohol – These are not necessarily bad habits. I still drink coffee (black) like a fiend. Alcohol I drink socially – and only wine and beer. they are potentially unhealthy habits. And I list them because so many in the medical establishment say so.


  1. If you took the hint from the header picture on this post, I have lost 15 lbs in 3 weeks. Actually, after the first 10 days, I had lost 10 lbs. Announcing that sounded cliche last week, so I have waited until today. Every time I have been on a diet, I like to compare the amount I have have lost to a cut of meat. Because that is equivalent to the weigh I have lost.
  2. I eat at least 10 helpings of Fruits/Vegetables per day. This is major for me. Back a couple months ago, I took notice of the fact that the only thing that I could call a vegetable in my diet that day was potato chips. So for today, for example: Breakfast: Fresh salsa (Peppers, Tomatoes, Onions), Smoothie (Strawberries, Pineapple, Banana), Lunch (potato), Snack (peanuts), Dinner Greek Salad (Lettuce, Olives, Tomatoes, Onion). This is about average.
  3. I feel better. I do not have to hold the rail going down the stairs. Balance is better. No appreciable pain. No Ibuprofin every morning.

I still have another week on this diet (or 10 days). I really really really want to drop below 200 lbs.

So. If you have read this far, it is time for a little homework. What are your Good Habits and Bad Habits? If you are game, make a list. Take a sheet of paper and divide it in two. List out the habits you have that you think are healthy and unique to you. Then dig a little deeper and list the bad habits.

Is there something you think you should change?


  1. Good deal Andrew. Sounds like you are well on your way.

    All good here; I eat light, mainly veggie, all the basics like greens, potatoes, tofu, olive oil. Some beans for lunch. Oatmeal. I enjoy sweets too but with my hour of exercise and hour of deep yin yoga daily, burning off calories like a furnace. I also drink water like a race horse.


    1. Author

      Ryan, That is a great mix of diet and activity. At this point, I need to add some specific exercise to my own regiment – other than the typical chasing kids around town and carry the baby upstairs to nap.

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