We all come in different shapes and sizes.  This point was driven home to me this evening.  I passed an unusually tall man on my walk home, and as we passed, it struck me that we could each be having exactly the same thought with very, very different meanings.  I’m amused by such things.  What can I say?

In any case, let me take a moment to welcome you to Saggy Man Breasts dot Com.  You’re probably wondering what this is all about.  Well, in a nutshell, this is a chronicle of one cartoonist’s quest to lead a ‘moobs’-free existence.  I’ve been overweight for… years.  I like to tell people that I’ve been carrying this baby for the last two decades, and frankly, it’s time to deliver.  How overweight?  Pretty darn.  I’ll put a weight status counter in the sidebar for your gazing pleasure.  So… I need to lose weight… but how to do it?

Here’s one of life’s odd secrets.  If you want to know how to lose weight, ask a fat person.  Fat people are experts at losing weight.  We’re seen it all and tried it all.  Where things tend to fall apart is completing the journey or keeping the weight off.  Now for some, there are physical complications that leave them stuck.  Others have mental blocks.  Some lack motivation.  Some lack willpower, and some are just focused on other things.  In my case… well, if I new that answer, I’d already be living sans moobs.  Long-term motivation, however, has always been a problem.  That’s where this site comes in.

I’m a visual guy.  I need to read about things to get myself excited enough to do them, and I need to write about them to keep myself focused.  So, this is the site where I will be posting my progress on this quest.  During the run, you should expect to see:

  • Daily comics about the process
  • Reviews of whatever diet/self-improvement/exercise book I am reading at the moment
  • My daily food intake and exercise output
  • Whatever else crosses my mind on any given day.

I have only one rule with the site, and that is: NO LYING!  If I do well, I’ll note it, and when I do poorly, I’ll put that down as well.  I won’t get anywhere if I’m fudging the records, so truth only (even when it makes me look bad!).  That all having been said, I again say welcome.  Your (constructive) thoughts, ideas and conversation is greatly appreciated.

Now, without further ado, let’s run the numbers:

Food Intake:

  • Breakfast – Fruit Smoothie (a la Alton Brown) – 355 calories
  • Lunch  – Popeye’s Fried Chicken (leftovers: Thigh and Wing) and Biscuit with a dab of Honey – 890 calories
  • Snack – Dannon Blueberry Greek Yogurt – 150 calories
  • Dinner – Two Johnsonville Brats (ketchup, mustard and onions), watermelon and Kraft Mac-n-cheese (light prep) – 880 calories

Total Calories: 2275

In general I target 2000 calories, so I’m off a bit there.  However, the above certainly is NOT conventional diet fare.  The Fruit smoothie is always a good start.  I make when I get up in the morning while I’m trying to stir my brain in to consciousness.  I use skim milk rather than Alton’s suggested soy milk because… eww.  I knew lunch was going to be a struggle as I was cleaning up leftovers, and in my world, that’s pretty much an excuse to overindulge.  I think this is underscored by the fact that I chose not to look at Popeye’s nutritional data until after I’d eaten the food.  Looking at these charts is always an eye-opening experience.  I think the two biggest surprises were just how many calories the skin/breading add as well as the fact that there are 240 calories in a teeny tiny little biscuit! Crikey!  Another big surprise was that Popeye’s hone… isn’t.  Check out the image below:

Popeye's Honey "Sauce" packet

It never really occurred to me to look, but notice that that packet says ‘Honey Sauce‘.  What the hell is honey sauce?!?  Well, according to the ingredients, it’s honey, corn syrup, HFCS, sugar flavors, fructose and colors.  Go figure.  I guess you can’t trust anyone these days!

Dinner was pretty good.  I’d promised my daughter bratwurst, so that was what we had.  As I was grilling them, I contemplated buns.  Having been forewarned by the biscuit episode earlier, I took a look at the nutrition panel on the bag and… 110 calories per bun.  Fark.  The brats were 240 calories a piece, the watermelon was about 110 calories.  I was making the mac and cheese as well, and it’s panel showed a serving at 410 calories.  Yikes!  Something had to give.

Well, I opted to pass on the buns.  My skinny wife and daughter could have them.  I could not.  I also noticed that the m-n-c had a “light” preparation on the box which used skim milk and less butter.   We only stock skim milk in the house (because apparently the girls only like to drink colored water as opposed to actual milk), so I cut the butter and whipped it up, and I couldn’t really tell any difference (though again, I’d always used skim milk).  The label said the caloric hit was now 290 calories for a serving.  A serving, as it happens, is a third of a box.  Now, I didn’t come anywhere near a third of the box, but counted the full 290 to account for condiment calories and the uncertainty associated with calories in lunch and dinner meat servings.

Whoof… let’s move on to exercise.

So sayeth the Garmin.

For exercise, I’ve been been walking to work.  With the current route, that is 4.39 miles door-to-door.  Today, I walked both ways (I really hate the bus!!!).  That’s a total of 8.78 miles walked and, according to my Garmin Forerunner 305, 2286 calories burned.

That’s exciting, isn’t it?!?  2275 calories consumed and 2286 calories burned meaning I’m net -11 calories for the day.  Well, it would be if you believed such things.  Exercise calories burned has a lot of individual variables, so I take such numbers with a very large grain of kosher salt!  On the plus side, the heavier you are, the more calories you burn when walking, but on the minus side, the number will (hopefully) continue to shrink for the same distance covered.

If you look at the chart above, you’ll notice a few things.  First, I think the garmin is pretty poxy at recording elevations.  Secondly, is my heart rate line.  You’ll notice that my heart rate is significantly lower on the way to work (where it’s generally uphill) as opposed to my way home from work (where it is generally downhill).  It’s an interesting set of numbers.  I was clearly fatigued on the way home (though oddly a bit faster… well… not so odd… it’s downhill, after all).

So there we are.  Tomorrow, I will finish off the leftover chicken, but will try and be a bit sensible about it.  More walking.   Lots of work to do.