Archive | July 2019

Daily Bread #68


Shrinking,  I am shrinking.  Or melting, who knows?  It has been pretty hot on some of my walks.  It is important to get out early.  I have been trying to do two walks most days, a longer one in the morning, a shorter one after dinner, and I like to swim in between.  Being retired gives me the time to do that almost every day.

This week my wife Anne gave me some of her clothes that are too big for her.  They fit!  This is amazing because I used to weigh 3 times as much as her.    I still weigh more, but no longer even twice as much.

I am still not getting my gallon of water in most days.  Does that make a difference? I have reduced my percentage of protein, so maybe it is OK as far as my kidney health goes. I haven’t felt really hungry, even though I ate a bit less last week, so I don’t need as much water to feel full.

The good and scary news this week is that my knee surgery is now scheduled.  September 16th.  I am excited and somewhat apprehensive.  From what I have heard doing the rehab is the most critical part.  I think I can do that given that I already have an exercise routine.  I won’t be able to swim of course, so swim season will end early for me this year.  But maybe after the surgery, I can ditch my cane on my walks.  I don’t use it indoors, unless there is a crowd.

I went to an earlier group tonight with a facilitator I had before that I like a lot.  She is leaving for another job in a couple of weeks and there will be someone new.  The time is much better for me.  I was even able to take a short walk when I got home.

I liked the new group a lot.  I missed people from the other group, but it was also good to hear some new stories.  The support and sharing is so important.

It upsets me that so many people have dropped out, but I guess that is typical.  Apparently 95% of people who diet to lose weight, gain all the lost weight back in a few years.   Kaiser’s record is somewhat better but the “failure” rate is still high.  Sticking with the lifestyle changes seem to be the most important factor in success.  Maybe it is good I am still so compulsive about this.

L’Chaim!  This week’s stats: I am drinking about 72 ounces of water most days.  My Fitbit report shows 101,769 steps last week for over 43 miles – down some from last week.  I ate approximately 9,996 calories and burned 18,227 for a deficit of 8231. I am down another 2.4 pounds for a total loss of 131.6

A Rebirth

IMG_2374I know now

About rebirth

And resurrection

Both are hard work

Blessings that may come

Only after old habits die


So hard

The stones that block

Our path

Partly of our own making

We need help to chip away

Those boulders

It helps to work

Up a sweat

Trying to climb over them

It helps to have friends

To lend a hand

A leg up



It is springtime once again

There are flowers

Among the rocks



Daily Bread #66 (Back Home)


We got back home and I realized I actually live in a place where people pay big bucks to go on vacation.  I did so much walking while we were gone, I thought I would try it here.  I have a new routine now I think.  I walk for 45-80 minutes mid-morning before it gets hot and try to do it again after dinner.  You can’t beat the views from my neighborhood and the flowers are all in bloom.


It is very hilly here and although the downhills slow me down some because I am afraid of falling if my knee gives out.  I am getting to be an expert with my cane, but will be really glad when I no longer need it. Uphills are much easier, and I don’t have to stop to catch my breath or rest like I did before.


Standing without moving is still hard, though.  I went to a local protest against the current administration’s draconian immigration policies.  I did the short march around a block in downtown Novato and could have done more walking, but I was glad that I found a place to sit to listen to the speakers.






I was back at the group last night for the first time in a month and had my official weigh in.  I lost 9.6 pounds during the month I was on vacation.  I am slowly getting used to my new body, but at least I seem to be on track with the lifestyle change.  I want to lose another 12 pounds or so before my knee surgery and right now, that seems like a fairly easy goal.

L’Chaim!  This week’s stats: I am still not getting my gallon of water in most days, my bladder needs time to adjust back up to that volume.  My Fitbit report shows 109,110 steps last week for over 46 miles – up from last week.  I ate approximately 11,000 calories and burned 18,693. I am down another pound for a total loss of 129.2.

Daily Bread #65 (On the Road)



Last week on vacation.  Damn, it has been fun.  After Canada, we visited friends in Portland and then headed down the Oregon Coast.  One more night on the road and then we are home.  I am thrilled at how active I have been able to be.  Long walks along the coast and when we walk a mile to and from dinner, a shared desert is just great and well earned.   Maybe TMI, but I have also had fun tossing my old baggy underwear into the trash each morning.  It is so much better than hauling it home to wash.  Getting new underwear now is much more fun than it was when I got it under the tree as a child.

Now that I know what I can do, I am looking forward to some long walks closer to home. That is one of the lessons I have learned during this time “on the road.”   Sometimes, just sometimes, we can do a LOT more than we think we can.  Like the old children’s story about the little engine that could, motivation matters.  At the beginning of my weight loss journey I was motivated by my declining health.  These last few weeks, I have been motivated by the beauty of the natural world and my desire to be out in it.

There is more to be learned from this time away. Every minute of my life now feels abundant with meaning if only I can keep my attention focused – or if I can let the focus go and just be in the moment.  I have walked in beauty.  I have been blessed.


L’Chaim!  Vacation stats: I am definitely NOT been getting my gallon of water in most days, it is just too hard when bathrooms aren’t just down the hall.   My Fitbit report shows 98,741 steps last week for over 41 miles – less than last week but still way more than I did at home.  I ate approximately 10,150 calories and burned 18280. I am down another .8 pounds for a total loss of 128.2.


Daily Bread #64 (on the Road)




Vacation has been good for me.  I am so happy that I am able to hike again.  It has been years since I have been able to do trails like these.  We have been to the Canadian Rockies many times and camped and hiked these trails with our kids.  I am not camping anymore, and my knees are still ridiculous, but I am actually pretty fast with my cane.    I am slow on the rocky and root covered parts because I am afraid to fall, but I am not getting out of breath and don’t have to stop and rest much at all.


With all the exercise, I have been able to indulge a bit on food.  I even had prime rib!  I skipped the potatoes and got extra veggies instead.  It was really good and I saved a bit for lunch the next day.  Rocking it in the Rockies, that’s me!  I even had fish and chips minus the chips and substituting salad. Restaurant workers have been very accommodating about keeping the potatoes and rice off my plate.  I do take a few of Anne’s fries if they look really yummy.

We are on the homeward bound part of our trip now, so will have some longer driving days and less serious hiking.  Looking forward to some long walks along the beach in Oregon though.

L’Chaim!  Vacation stats: I have probably NOT been getting my gallon of water in most days, but I am exercising some every single day and a lot on others. My Fitbit report shows 127,344 steps last week for over 53 MILES! I ate approximately 10,400 calories and burned 19,351. I am down another 1.2 pounds for a total loss of 127.4.