Saturday, January 9, 2010

January 9th, 2010

Intermittent Fasting

Today was not a great example of the lifestyle I am trying to live. My wonderful wife let me sleep in until 1200 because I had to stay late at work. Staying late when you already work 1900 to 0300 means that I was up until about 0430.

This is probably the most inconvenient work schedule I have ever had. I am not at home in the evenings, when my two toddlers are most cranky, and usually most resistant to going to bed. This is pure chaos for my 8 month pregnant wife.

Lately, I have trying to get up with my girls in the wee morning hours so my wife can get some much need rest. My youngest is fond of waking up around 0630, probably because of a neighbor with squeaky breaks leaving for work at just that time. I am up with them for about 2-3 hours, or until the toddlers made enough noise to wake up Mommy. Between my head cold last week and the hour of overtime last night, I have not been able to get myself out of bed that early to take care of them.

I have more energy again so tomorrow I will be up, bright and early. Or is that dark and early if the sun is not up yet? As my step-sister used to say, "the butt-crack of dawn." A fitting metaphor when you have to change poopy diapers at 0630.

Today was not so much about what I was eating, but when I was eating it. We ate at a restaurant that I had never tried before, Tahoe Joe's, and I struggled to find something on the menu that fit my ideals and sounded appetizing. I finally decided that I was not going to pay $25 for a steak I could cook at home, so I ordered a mixed plate of ribs and shrimp. The ribs were BBQ, but it was not a heavy, sweet sauce. It was more of a peppery sauce that made your taste buds pop. The shrimp was breaded and came with a slightly zesty Asian-style ginger sauce. I figured out that it was supposed to be some sort of salad, because it came on a bed of shredded lettuce with peanuts and won ton strips. Of course, I had already eaten all of the shrimp before I realized the pile of pale, limp strips on my plate were more than decorative. The shrimp had a decent flavor, but the texture was a little chewy and just not very appetizing overall.

Afterward, my wife decided that she had to have cheesecake, from Cheesecake Factory. No cheap, grocery-store, semi-frozen cheesecake would suit her. I was excited because I had heard that they sold no-sugar added cheesecakes, and I wanted to try one. Turns out, according to the cashier, they stopped selling those cheesecakes because no one bought them. Now they offer a few "low-carb" cheesecakes with Splenda. Um... NOOOOO. Realizing that I was not going to be happy either way, I just went ahead and purchased a full fat, full sugar, real cheesecake (four slices actually). At least they make their cheesecakes with real ingredients, frankly that is better than eating real poison like artificial sweeteners.

I ate all of my food in a four hour block of time, which is pretty standard among followers of Intermittant Fasting (or IF). The nutritional studies done on IF have shown significant improvement in insulin response and even longevity which mimic similar results from caloric restriction studies. So... if I can not stress about calories, but still reap the same benefits as caloric restriction, why not? I don't get hungry. At least I rarely get hungry. Eating is more reflexive than it is instinctive for me. I find news articles discussing fasting, as part of a religious ritual or as part of a diet regimen, requiring huge amounts of willpower to be quite amusing. Anyone will tell you that I am not a font of resolve. If anything, I struggle more than most to stick with plans, jobs, hobbies, and even previous relationships.

Eating in a small window of time each day just feels natural for me. I work late, and I sleep weird hours, so if I want to eat with my family I must do so when I am home and they are awake and hungry. This usually means between 1300 and 1700. Maybe, as my body approaches a normal fat to muscle ratio, I may experience more of the effects of hunger. But, then again, I may not. Avoiding carbohydrates means that I will also avoid the ebb and spike of insulin response.

Additional information on IF can be found here at: Mark's Daily Apple.

My Meals Today:

All food was eaten between 1330 and 1730.

1/6 left-over Stuffed Pumpkin

1x Crab Cake (w/ questionable ingredients)
small portion of a crappy Baby Greens salad
1x rack of BBQ Ribs (delicious, peppery, and mildly sweet)
12x Asian-ginger Breaded Shrimp (good flavor, rubbery texture)

1/2 Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake
1/2 Red Velvet Cheesecake

Overall Grade: F I will not even go into the details of why I failed today. This week has not been my best effort.

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