Author Topic: Ten months of getting healthy  (Read 5816 times)

acanthurus

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 129
Ten months of getting healthy
« on: July 28, 2016, 10:59:46 AM »
So I FIRE'd and started focusing on my health. For 20 years I neglected myself. I was morbidly obese. Type 2 diabetic. Stressed out over work all the time. Really, really miserable shape.

Once FIRE'd I applied the discipline I learned saving towards fitness.

I thought I'd have a bit of fun with this so the graph is a little silly. Also attached are blood sugar graphs to show improvement in my condition. I wish I could post progress pics but I kinda want a smidgen of anonymity and while my face pics are awesome (I look damn sexy lol) I'm still self conscious about my body pics.

Anyway, this is my badassity, and I wanted to share.

If you are in a similar boat. please realize this can be done. If you have questions or want help please feel free to PM me.

marble_faun

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 591
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2016, 12:26:08 PM »
Awesome!!  I love your graph.  No to cupcakes!

I am just starting my journey with the MMM philosophy, but I also find that the desire to save goes hand-in-hand with the desire to be healthier. Often the two goals are aligned.  Like, I'm going to cook instead of ordering take-out -- walk my own dog instead of paying someone else to do it -- bike instead of Uber -- etc.

Turning it into an epic challenge makes it more fun somehow!

mynewchoice

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 96
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #2 on: July 28, 2016, 01:53:51 PM »
Congrats and love the graph!  I have had ups and downs with my fitness / health but this is extremely encouraging to see your results.  For me the hardest part has been to remain consistent when the demands of my job increase.  I have done much better when traveling however where I generally trip up is when I am home but have days / weeks when I am stuck in the office for 16+ hour days.  That is when I usually fall off the wagon a bit as by the time I get home I am exhausted and don't want to workout.  If I can curb those interruptions I will be doing much better.

Keep up the great work!

big_slacker

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1353
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #3 on: July 28, 2016, 02:15:41 PM »
Awesome work man! 2 lbs a week is the way to do it too, and it's great that you're biking now as well.

Not a big fan of keto personally but damned if it's not better than the alternative as you've shown. Congrats!

acanthurus

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 129
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #4 on: July 28, 2016, 05:36:48 PM »
Awesome work man! 2 lbs a week is the way to do it too, and it's great that you're biking now as well.

Not a big fan of keto personally but damned if it's not better than the alternative as you've shown. Congrats!

Thanks! I'm really happy I've been able to maintain the 2lbs per week loss. It was easy at first but as I've dropped weight I've had to increase the exercise as well as start counting calories to make sure I maintain the ~1000 calorie per day deficit.

I agree keto is still a divisive diet. For me, with my diabetes, it has been the best to control both my weight and my blood glucose numbers. Both my GP and my endocrinologist are amazed. I went from an A1C of 11.0 in May of '15 (this was on medication too, which is horrifying)to an A1C of 5.8 in January of '16 on the same medication regimen. Anyone here in medicine can tell you how massive of an improvement that is in such a short time.

These days my numbers are even better, as I'm running between 55 and 90 most days. I'm expecting an A1C below 5.0 at my appointment next month. I am taking half the medication I was in January and my doctors may want me to discontinue medication completely. When my glucose dips down into the 50s I start feeling light headed and I don't think the low dose of metformin I'm on is even necessary.

For people with normal carbohydrate metabolism I don't know that keto is really beneficial, they can probably do very well just cutting out the excess sugar and counting calories and exercising. But with my messed up glucose control, keeping the carbs out of my diet has been amazingly helpful.

TheFrugalShrink

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 11
  • Location: Midwest
    • The Frugal Shrink
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2016, 06:24:30 PM »
Fantastic work on reducing your blood glucose and A1c!!  By being consistent with your hard work you have greatly reduced your chances of the "opathies" that are common in uncontrolled diabetes (retinopathy/visual disturbance, nephropathy/kidney damage, neuropathy/nerve damage which is what contributes to amputations).  Very excited for you.  :)

Sailor Sam

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4587
  • Age: 40
  • Location: Steel Beach
  • Semper...something
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2016, 06:55:55 PM »
Very inspiring post, and one that really resonates with me! Both my parents are diabetic, and I'm showing some worrying signs of sliding towards pre-diabetes, with a borderline fasting blood glucose, and A1c at 5.5. I'm not FIRED, but I've gotten serious about my health this year, too. I'm almost 90 days into a ketogenic diet, and I've lost ~20lbs.

I'm looking forward to getting my lipid panel, and A1c retested. I've been testing blood glucose at home, and haven't seen any spikes. I hope my success post will be a fraction as awesome as your success post.

sonjak

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 234
  • Location: Portland, OR
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #7 on: July 28, 2016, 07:31:05 PM »
Really nice job!  Good for making your health such a priority in retirement.  Great chart too.  Love the graphics and colors.

happy

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6687
  • Location: NSW Australia
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #8 on: July 28, 2016, 07:36:36 PM »
Awesome. My sugar is fine, but I need to do this too, if possible before i get to FIRE.

marty998

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7076
  • Location: Sydney, Oz
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #9 on: July 29, 2016, 01:46:19 AM »
Very sexy..... the line of best fit curve & equation on the graph.

Oh... I'm sure you look good too now.

(Well done... sorry, I just love maths :D)

big_slacker

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1353
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #10 on: July 29, 2016, 03:31:43 PM »
Awesome work man! 2 lbs a week is the way to do it too, and it's great that you're biking now as well.

Not a big fan of keto personally but damned if it's not better than the alternative as you've shown. Congrats!

Thanks! I'm really happy I've been able to maintain the 2lbs per week loss. It was easy at first but as I've dropped weight I've had to increase the exercise as well as start counting calories to make sure I maintain the ~1000 calorie per day deficit.

I agree keto is still a divisive diet. For me, with my diabetes, it has been the best to control both my weight and my blood glucose numbers. Both my GP and my endocrinologist are amazed. I went from an A1C of 11.0 in May of '15 (this was on medication too, which is horrifying)to an A1C of 5.8 in January of '16 on the same medication regimen. Anyone here in medicine can tell you how massive of an improvement that is in such a short time.

These days my numbers are even better, as I'm running between 55 and 90 most days. I'm expecting an A1C below 5.0 at my appointment next month. I am taking half the medication I was in January and my doctors may want me to discontinue medication completely. When my glucose dips down into the 50s I start feeling light headed and I don't think the low dose of metformin I'm on is even necessary.

For people with normal carbohydrate metabolism I don't know that keto is really beneficial, they can probably do very well just cutting out the excess sugar and counting calories and exercising. But with my messed up glucose control, keeping the carbs out of my diet has been amazingly helpful.

For sure, that is a massive improvement. And I totally agree about fitting the diet to the individual, when you've got metabolic issues what might be good for a 'normal' person isn't necessarily what you need. I'd love for the world to swing towards low GI/med carb, veg heavy type diets but at a certain point it's damage control instead of starting from scratch optimal. Anyway, diet nerding aside you've done some incredible practical work and should keep doing what works and makes you healthy!

Shor

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 480
  • Location: Orange County, CA, USA
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #11 on: July 29, 2016, 03:43:11 PM »
Awesome work! Great to see another swimmer!
What sorts of workouts you doing nowadays?

What kind of results does the doc want to see until you can cut the medication out completely?

couronne

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 16
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #12 on: July 29, 2016, 05:50:38 PM »
Amazing work! The keto diet is really the way to go with Type 2 diabetes. The results of many people are incredible. Congrats on your success!

acanthurus

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 129
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #13 on: July 30, 2016, 12:25:32 PM »
Awesome work! Great to see another swimmer!
What sorts of workouts you doing nowadays?

What kind of results does the doc want to see until you can cut the medication out completely?
I don't really know what results the doctors would want or need to see to be honest. I kind of do my own thing anyway? My experience with physicians is that they'll happily prescribe an expensive cocktail of meds rather than tell me to lose some fucking weight and hit the gym. I wish they would have screamed that at me ten years ago when I was diagnosed. Honestly they will probably not recommend medication discontinuation due to liability. I'll probably make the decision on my own after seeing what my A1C numbers are and seeing how they change after.

My GP is quite conservative and was very hesitant about keto but trusted me to change my med dosage on my own if needed as a result of the diet. I'm way smarter than his average patient and he knows I won't do anything too stupid. I think I've converted him on keto, he half-jokingly asked me if I wanted to help his other patients lose weight. I've never seen him so happy when in 7 months I went from A1C 11.0->5.8 and lost a bunch of weight too.

My endo is much more aggressive, I only started seeing him after I started keto. He's smart, aggressive, willing to do things that make sense from a scientific standpoint but that might need another 5-10 years before becoming "accepted" standards of care. I have to be careful with him because he will be very aggressive if I want him to, so I balance his advice with my GP. He is regarded as the best endocrinologist in my area but the old conservative doctors sometimes disapprove of his methods, but that's exactly why I go see him.

As for swimming: When it started my rules were simple: I have to stay in the water for at least an hour swimming laps, any stroke, any rate, as many breaks as I needed. I tended to do 100 yard fast crawl, 100 yard sidestroke, 50 yard elementary backstroke, 3 minute break, repeat.

As it progressed I kept the same 250 yard pattern and just swam for longer amounts of time. Up to 2 hours.

As it progressed I did more forward crawl, 200 yards followed by 50 yards backstroke followed by rest. I started requiring myself to do 1500 yards minimum at this point.

As it progressed I started doing moderate 400 yard forward crawl sets with flip turns with the occasional 100 yard sprint mixed in. 100 yard sprints were 1:50 (UGH FAT SLOW).

As it progressed I upped the distance - 2000 to up to 3100 yards? I think that was my max distance in a session, all forward crawl, broken up into anywhere from 800 yard start to 200 yard finish sets as I got tired towards the end.

Then right nagging shoulder pain set in. Took a break for 3 weeks. Then back to pool. Still there but less.

I am now back to my semi-original rules: spend an hour in the water doing SOMETHING, and swim at least 1500 yards.

I usually do 1750 yards continuous (no breaks) very relaxed forward crawl with open turns taking maybe 40 minutes to finish the one set. At the start of the diet my resting heart rate was 75bpm and BP was 120/80. My resting heart rate is 55-60bpm, BP now 110/70, and during the workout it's maybe 110bpm so I'm at the very low end of exercise intensity while I swim unless I throw in some sprints. I then screw around trying to learn new tricks like dolphin kicking across the pool (I suck at this) or just going to the diving boards and pretending I'm a kid again.

So a mile swim takes me 40 minutes, which I think is bad but my form probably sucks (pull is really good but legwork needs work and probably body position too since my legwork is not right). I can do 100 yard forward crawl sprint in 1:35 now which is not awful for an amateur but not good either I think. My first 25 and 50 yard times are great, it would be a 1:20 sprint if I could maintain my 50 yard time but that second 50 yards I'm much slower. I seem to be an endurance guy and not so much a sprint guy, and it's probably form.

Also, I got a flat on my MTB last week and decided if I was going to be pulling a tire off and instead of putting a 3rd patch on the tube I just ordered new front and rear tires, tubes, and rim tape from Nashbar (had accidentally used 17mm tape last time when I should have used 22mm, got two pinch flats as a result when it shifted and spoke holes got exposed. The 22mm barely fits but doesn't interfere with the bead it seems. I'm a solid 3-4mph faster on these new semi-slick tires than I was on my old knobbies. I can't really go offroading or bombing down stairs on these though, so I'm probably going to build a second wheelset with stronger rims and offroad tires and just swap them until I at some point pick up a second bike.

« Last Edit: July 30, 2016, 12:44:55 PM by acanthurus »

Beardog

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 203
  • Location: central Mass area
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #14 on: July 30, 2016, 03:52:39 PM »
Congratulations on your incredible accomplishment!  It must be so rewarding to see your weight go down and your blood work improve.  I admire you and wish for your continued success.

Murdoch

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 131
  • Location: QLD, Australia
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #15 on: July 30, 2016, 08:43:29 PM »
Congratulations on the incredible achievement.
That HbA1c drop is amazing and reflects true hard work and dedication.
I suspect you'll go through a de-prescribing process after your next level check.
There's few things I enjoy more than being able to remove medications when patients finally decide to apply the lifestyle advice.
No matter how many times I start with the lifestyle advice backed up by a team of other health professionals, it really is 100% up the patient, their readiness to change and the ability to consistently apply the advice.

Congrats again.

COEE

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 611
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #16 on: July 31, 2016, 04:25:40 AM »
Wow!  Nearly 100#, now that's impressive!  Keep up the good work.  I can imagine that it's more difficult with diabetes, but I"m fortunate to not know the details.

Basenji

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1035
  • Location: D.C.-ish
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #17 on: July 31, 2016, 06:05:56 AM »
Badass, following. Well done.

GrumpyPenguin

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 291
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #18 on: July 31, 2016, 06:37:56 AM »
Awesome work man!

aperture

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 472
  • Location: Colorado
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #19 on: July 31, 2016, 07:12:23 PM »
Wow - I am stunned.  One big reason for me to get past my FIRE date os to do what you have done, but I had not previously found anyone that made the kind of change you have.  In 1991, I started eating jelly beans to do my chemistry homework and here it is 25 years later and I am still making the same bargain with the devil to keep my ass in a seat earning. 

I have dieted before and lost down to a normal BMI, but with time, I slowly go back up.  Presently I plateaued last year after losing 30#.  I am maintaining, but cannot seem to get lower.  I am in contemplative phase looking at 4-Hour Body style diet/exercise or perhaps the Whole30 diet.  Reading for the next couple weeks and trying to figure out what may work for me. 

I hope that quitting my office job and moving around more will be a good long term solution.  Congrats and best wishes, Ap.

stashgrower

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 334
  • Location: Australia
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #20 on: July 31, 2016, 07:41:07 PM »
Very impressive, and I love the graphs. Blood sugar was educational.

boarder42

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7845
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #21 on: August 01, 2016, 09:09:30 AM »
Wow - I am stunned.  One big reason for me to get past my FIRE date os to do what you have done, but I had not previously found anyone that made the kind of change you have.  In 1991, I started eating jelly beans to do my chemistry homework and here it is 25 years later and I am still making the same bargain with the devil to keep my ass in a seat earning. 

I have dieted before and lost down to a normal BMI, but with time, I slowly go back up.  Presently I plateaued last year after losing 30#.  I am maintaining, but cannot seem to get lower.  I am in contemplative phase looking at 4-Hour Body style diet/exercise or perhaps the Whole30 diet.  Reading for the next couple weeks and trying to figure out what may work for me. 

I hope that quitting my office job and moving around more will be a good long term solution.  Congrats and best wishes, Ap.

4 hour body is awesome!! i've got some great recipes if you want any.  my wife and i follow this and it shreads 5lbs a week if we do it cold turkey (for me 3lbs for her)  I've got pizza crust/chips(basically socca) recipes that fit 4 hour body, oven roasted mashed cauliflower has replaced potatoes very nicely for us.  lunch is lots of different chili's typically.  cheese and ice cream are the 2 things i miss the most on it but i can eat those on saturday every week.  started around 220 a month ago just hit 202 friday ... at 210 this morning(cheat day hold over) usually back to previous friday weight by wednesday morning.

rockeTree

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 200
Re: Ten months of getting healthy
« Reply #22 on: August 01, 2016, 06:58:59 PM »
Holy cow, that's amazing work. Just got back to the gym myself and you are inspirational!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk