Last night I watched a movie that inspired me to make a small shift; Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead. Frankly I am nothing like the two most inspirational figures in the movie. I'm likely healthier than the vast majority of my friends and family. I have normal blood pressure, normal cholesterol, and no physical ailments (other than my mental capacity some would say).
I am currently healthy to the extent that I even donate my time occasionally for Clinical pharmacology or “Phase I” studies for the first phase of drug development, an in-depth process of clinical trials that are designed to look at a drug’s effect in healthy individuals. The studies that I have done in the last two years have included epilepsy, cholesterol, and even the effect alcohol has on the metabolism of pain medications in my blood stream (that one was pretty fun). Needless to say, in order to go through these studies, and to get paid for them, you go through quite a few blood screens, urine tests, physicals and electrocardiograms (ECGs).
So back to why I was inspired by Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead since I really had nothing in common with the two battling health and weight issues. Somehow I was drawn into and could very personally relate to Joe Cross’ transition. I have had two similar metamorphosis so far in my life, the most recent was from November 2010 – May 2011 where I decided not to drink a single drop of alcohol. An undertaking for someone like me because I firmly believe I live in the Craft Beer Capital of the World (St. Louis, Missouri), and I happen to have been a home brewer for the last 11 years. For me my intention for this process isn’t going to be about weight loss or physical transition for that matter. What I will be testing, in a very short time is the impact of infusing my body with the nutrients found specifically in raw fruits and vegetables. I ultimately want to see the transition of my mind. I want to test how my attitude and mental clarity responds to the diet Joe Cross took on and see how it compares to how my body detoxed from alcohol.
Some people may find this strange but I believe that proper nutrition is just as important, possibly even more important than not blatantly poisoning it with drugs or alcohol.
Background on my Current Conditioning:
I’ve been an athlete for the majority of my life, although the only real athletic activity I currently do consistently is on the golf course (yes I walk). I have two gym memberships, which I call my Out of Shape Expense being in the mindset that anyone who isn’t maintaining a healthy active lifestyle should pay a ‘fat tax’. During this little experiment I will have a golf tournament, two hockey games, a softball double header, and just for fun I may do a short track indoor triathlon. What also makes this an inconvenient time to mess with my mental clarity is that I have two big projects coming due and I plan on taking certifications for a likely sustainable career change.
Obviously, I’m going to recommend that you NOT try any of what I’m going to do and I hope instead you use my process as a way to spark your own motivation, but consult your physician before you put any new diet or exercise into action. I am going to have trainers, nutritionist, and coaches to consult during my little experiment if I wish.
What the game plan is:
I’d like to say I knew how this process was going to go. I have decided that I am going to take some baseline measurements and do some self reflection on my attitude, motivation, and mental clarity. The physical measurements aren’t what we are really going to be focused on, just merely a bonus if those stats do change. I will certainly be curious if a diet consisting of predominantly vegetables and fruits derogates my strength at all. What makes the ‘experiment’ difficult is measuring the mental changes.. since my attitude is pretty subjective, what I’ll be looking for is a noticeable ‘euphoric’ change. If this actually turns out to be successful and I turn around and make recommendations for others to try this process, I would like to hope it will be a change in my mentality so much so that I can actually feel a difference. After all, I was able to feel a noticeable change after my abstinence from alcohol.
I've made comments in the past saying, “I may have never had an original thought in my life." I will follow that statement saying that I don’t believe I ever do anything the way other people do them. I always do what I say I’m going to do, and I may be a bit of an extremist.. but if I’m going to do something, I’m going to do it my way.
Where do we start:
I’m 67.7” tall and currently weigh 162 lbs. Other vitals I would have to guess, but since I know approximates from the studies I recently completed, those figures would be fairly close. At 7:00 a.m. I have a resting heart rate of 55 bpm and a blood pressure of 115/75.
I don't have a budget set aside, I don't know how extreme I'm going to take the diet. My plan is to eat and drink as much fruit and veggies as I can stand in addition to some standard vitamins and protein shakes. I am not a nutritionist, and certainly not a scientist (unless you ask me about my brewing). I have an idea of what data I'm going to collect and frankly how I am going to collect the data. Through this process, I will do my best to record and update my blog on my progress. I won't release any of the actual data until I'm finished because I want to be focused on the process and my busy schedule.