About a year ago, Val pointed me to the RealAge.com website and I took the RealAge test. The test is designed to calculate your “real age” as opposed to your “chronological age” based upon your answers to questions about your health and lifestyle.
At the time, I was 38, chronologically, but my “real age” turned out to be 43. You see the “43 year old” here, swimming with his daughters during a camping trip in August, 2007.
The results came as a bit of a shock to me and I took steps to reduce my “real age.” They recommended more exercise, more healthy eating and a reduction in my weight, which was 225 lbs. on a 6 ft., 2 in. frame.
So, with the support and help of Val, I decided to change the way I was living and eating. Here is what I did:
- Cut out all junk food completely: I loved anything sweet; no donut, cookie, cupcake, danish, etc. could escape me once it presented itself. So, I made the decision:
- Nothing at all between meals; nothing after dinner. I stood firm by this rule for about four months, eating as much as I wanted at meals, but nothing in between. Now I largely follow it, save in special situations. I do, however, often allow myself pretzels (Utz Sourdough) with mustard (Grey Poupon) after dinner if Val and I are watching a movie or a TV show. It helped a great deal that Val is such an excellent cook and we
- Eat healthy food, locally grown if possible, in reasonable quantities. I tried to listen to my body when it told me that I was full; I ate more slowly (knowing this would be all I would have until the next meal). Val and I also agreed to
- Exercise regularly. We starting doing the YOU: On a Diet 20 minute Workouts every other day together. We began with the Beginner Workout, moved through the Intermediate Workout and now we have progressed to the Advanced Workout. In the year we have been doing this, we have remained very dedicated to our every other day schedule. Working out together after the girls are in bed has been one of the best things about the whole process. Sometimes we talk during the workout, but just as often we workout together in a supportive silence.
That is basically it: eat well and move. If possible, do both with someone you love.
I started to shed pounds and, most importantly, I started to feel much better. When I wake up now, I no longer have the aches and pains I had a year ago. My back never hurts and I feel much stronger. I feel more in control of myself overall. Plus, I don’t get as tired as I used to when playing with the girls and when it is hot out, I tolerate it much better.
Now, I am 39, chronologically, but my “real age” is 35.5. You see the “35.5 year old” here, swimming with his daughters on a camping trip in July 2008.
I now weigh a little under 175 lbs. and none of my clothes fit any longer, but I feel much more at home in my body and I look forward to more time with Val and the girls.