A Skald’s Life – Business Virtues – My Nutritional Plan

Happy Woden’s (Odin) Day 

I never really got anywhere with my body and health until I figured out that it wasn’t the exercise that mattered most.  Exercise is important but what is more important is nutrition.  If you can get nutrition down, then a lack of exercise at times when it happens is less detrimental.  My experience so far with this is that when I can’t lift or walk like I would like, my weight and health stay steady as long as I am keeping up nutrition.

Now, I have to say that the diet plans with you counting carbs or calories don’t work for me.  Nor does setting up a meal plan in the sense of having every meal and snack laid out.  No, none of that works for me and I also find the whole idea of six small meals a day cost prohibitive.  Sorry it is. So I have spent my time looking for alternatives.

My goals with nutrition is 1) To lose fat, 2) To maintain muscle and strength and 3) control my diabetes. These three goals do often conflict, at least if you follow the traditional method for dealing with diabetes for instance.  The original diet plan I had from the experts still had me pouring carbs into myself in order to keep my sugar steady.  The problem with this became all to apparent that I struggled to lose weight and logically, if you are insulin resistant, how in the world is it better to put more things into your blood stream that require more insulin to digest? How is that going to work?  You are compounding the problem. People assured me this worked but then I watched this video and realized I actually has doctors asking the same questions and bingo it clicked.

I also have some practical concerns.

Firstly, I need a plan that I can eat when I can eat and not worry about how much I am eating.  For me a better control system is controlling what and when I eat.  Not how much and counting numbers.  Secondly, I can’t always eat at regular intervals.  I neither have the money to buy the food nor the schedule. Finally,  I also am one of those people who like a big meal now and then.  So my plan in since the beginning of summer has been two-fold.  1) Paleo Diet as a base and 2) Intermittent fasting as a control.

Paleo Diet is my base in that it controls what I eat.  Not how much but basically what I can eat.  Mostly I eliminate a lot of stuff that has sugar or carbs altogether. Probably the most notable are bread, pasta, potatoes, sugar and dairy.  Now I am not pure Paleo Diet.  I ignore two things – Dairy (it doesn’t have carbs – unless sugar is added – and it contains protein) and High Salt Meats. Basically the last one is countered by the fact I lift and muscles need salt.

Bread is a struggle because all cheap meals are sandwich foundational.  I don’t miss pasta much.  I hit potatoes maybe once a week. Sugar I still have once in a while but I buy the smallest serving of what I am craving and stick with that.  Fruit is a good alternative to sugar snack.  I like oranges and strawberries as an alternative and the nice thing about them is I only need one orange and a handful of strawberries.  The main thing is I can eat all the meat I want to and it doesn’t matter what kind.  Protein in abundance and that stifles appetite.

The control is intermittent fasting.  The nutritional and agricultural industry have us with this notion that we must eat three large meals a day with numerous snacks in between.  I mean what incentive do they really have to tell us to eat less?  They make money off us eating stuff.  So I intermittent fast from time to time.  I am getting ready to do some more here starting next week once all the planning is in place and it is time to implement it all.

Now so far this summer I think the results speak for themselves. I weighed 343 lbs in mid May.  My A1C was 8.1.  In late July I was 302 lbs. and my A1C was 7.0  I have lost weight since but I don’t know how much.  I also suspect my sugar as dropped some more but until my next blood test I don’t know how much.  I would say it’s working far better than the established nutritional plans.

Despite the success, I feel I have plateaued as far as weight loss in the last month or so.  So more carb reduction is in order and probably intermittent fasting will return.  In that case I am thinking I will eat breakfast which will be purely Paleo with one exception.  Probably oatmeal with honey.  Then I will fast from the time I get up which is 2 am roughly because of work and that will last until I get off work which is about 2 pm,  I can eat then from 1 pm until I go to bed a 8 pm.  Giving I am eating breakfast early when I get up this doesn’t seem as long.  On days off it is harder than I am at work honestly.

As far as drink I am heading toward being mostly water and not flavored either. If there is an exception, it’s my allowed consumption of alcohol at social events and a couple of times a week before bed.  Milk is not off my list because I still allow dairy but to be honest I am not a fan of milk.  I allow for Coke Zero, but I am thinking of limiting that way down for a while to get rid of the caffeine and save some money.  I think I might be a little high on that.

A word on cheats.  I do allow them.  I will eat at work if my employer is putting up the food and it doesn’t matter what it is. I allow three meals a week to have non-Paleo elements.  As long as it is only one.  Once a week, my wife and I consider ice cream together, so that is on my list of cheats.  Mostly though when I have a craving, I get the smallest serving size and eat it, or commonly I just don’t and wait and usually, given enough time, it goes away.

Self-Reliance:

“Self Reliance is the spirit of independence, which is achieved not only for the individual, but also for the family, clan, tribe and nation.”

Principle: Work to be self-reliant in all things.

I think we are good so far.  When all the planning is done and I get these journal entries in line with the goals, bucket lists, routines and plans, the Business Virtues will probably focus on the budget instead of nutrition. For now I can say the budget is tight but we are providing for ourselves what we need. The future is still the question and this going to require a budget that anticipates growth and we are going to have to make that happen.  For self-reliance to continue we need income growth.

Industriousness:

“Industriousness is the willingness to work hard, always striving for efficiency, as a joyous activity in itself”

Principle: Work with enjoyment of work itself.

I think the real indicator that you are on to something when it regards work is people begin to complain about it.  I work hard, I can do a lot of things people who are smaller and weaker cannot do and my job does have that heavy lifting element. I am not the fastest worker but I work constantly and continually, you won’t see me standing around and talking a lot unless it is communicating with management or my fellow workers.  I am thus starting to get attacks against my work by people who don’t.  Complaining never has done me much good so I am working on making sure I complain about systems and things, not people.

Laziness is not efficient either. I have to admit I have used being tired as an excuse away from work when it comes to school.  I need to get over that. I need extra item in November to do research and write so the busy work of school needs to be a week or two ahead for me to be successful and that need to happen by this weekend or latest Halloween.

Hospitality:

“Hospitality is the willingness to share what one has with one’s fellows, especially when they are far from home.”

Principle: Be ready to be hospitable to those who truly need it.

I don’t have time to be hospitable to any but the most in need. My life needs to become more prosperous before my dream of retiring to be the philosopher everyone visits comes true.  More on that in a future post.

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

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