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Diet day 789

It's no fucking wonder people believe that diets don't work. When I turned my back on mine last year for ten minutes a few months, I regained 20% of what I'd lost and it's taken a whole year to get back to where I left off. Without my massive data set, my half a pound a week loss would be indiscernible, and I'd be on the diets-don't-work bandwagon myself.

But I have that data, so I keep going.

The slowness has advantages. I can get used to one change, like giving up wheat, before introducing another one, like learning to love vegetables. (God, that one was hard!) I've also had time to re-learn cooking and find new restaurants, so that every meal is still a pleasure--even though my diet would have seemed scarily restrictive a couple of years ago.

The most tectonic changes I've made, however, are simple and free, and happen six days a week: I track my weight and calories, and I ride my bike.

Over the course of nearly 800 days, these basic things have created profound improvements in my life. I believe in them deeply. Diets in general may not work for people in general, but my diet works for me. I've lost over 60 pounds, I can squat to my haunches (and get up again); I can ride a heavy Dutch bike 20 miles and buy clothes in "standard" sizes and fit in an airplane seat. My resting heart rate is 60, my blood pressure is normal, my lungs are clear, I sleep eight hours a night, I have no depression, and all the basic test results that were edging into the red three years ago are comfortably in the green.

Yesterday when my doctor said, "You're an amazing human being with the health profile of a person twenty years younger, and I expect to be treating you for thirty or forty more years," (if you're new here, I'm 57) I wasn't all that surprised. Pleased like a smug bitch, of course, but not astonished.

So if it takes another 800 days to lose the remaining 30 pounds I want to lose, well, then it takes another 800 days. I seem to be on the right track.

Photo of Darkemeralds in an elevator wearing a sulfur-yellow coat
On my way to the bike garage on Monday evening after work

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