Thursday, January 18, 2007

Years of Failure Well Documented

I have worked for the State of Utah since the middle of 1994. One of the benefits is a program called HealthyUtah which includes a basic health and fitness assessment. The first time I went in 1995 I weighed 186 and my cholesterol level was 179. This seemed pretty healthy to me, even though it was about 20 pounds heavier than I was in 1992 when I ran a marathon.

Prior to taking that first position with the State, I was working at UPS unloading and sorting packages for 4-5 hours a night. I was also biking, rock climbing and playing basketball regularly. By the spring of 1996 Mrs. GC had given birth to our second son, we bought a house, and I was busy working full time and going to graduate school.

Suddenly I found that the Big Macs and Big Gulps had caught up with me. It seems like every year since I have 'resolved' to turn my weight and fitness level around. Don't get me wrong; while I am clearly overweight, I know that I am still in better shape than a lot of 38 year-old men. Unfortunately I attended another assessment this week, and found that HeathyUtah has tracked my 'progress' since 1998. It's not a pretty picture:

Test Date
Blood Pressure
Total Chol.
HDL Chol.
Body Comp.
01/16/07234.0120 / 742392934.132.63
11/03/05228.0128 / 802493733.031.80
08/19/03242.0128 / 822362732.033.75
08/28/02224.0122 / 802932929.031.24
10/25/01224.0120 / 922922631.031.24
10/24/00228.0130 / 882772425.0 31.80
11/09/99221.0122 / 743012230.030.82
10/29/98210.0112 / 682641532.029.29

Looking at that I wonder now why I am not dead already. But I am still here, and three weeks into the new year I am making progress on my weight loss goal. I am hopeful (a trend on 1.5 pounds per week puts me right in the zone for my resolution to weigh 193 or less on August 1. I am also realistic, recognizing that there will be 2-3 plateaus on my journey, and that as this chart suggests, I am not very good at pushing through them.

So there you have it. The whole unvarnished truth going back almost 10 years.

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