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Concerning my diet on Aug. 11th, 12th, and 13th, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. I could and should refer to this three day stretch as “Days of Gluten,” since, as it happens, I ate a gluten-filled meal for dinner each of the days.

On each of these days I ate very low carb from breakfast until dinner or after dinner. But then, went a bit haywire with dinner. But Thursday and Friday nights I did not snack after dinner, or did not eat significant quantities of anything. And all three days I ate low calorie enough during the day, or skipped lunch, with the result that I experienced real, stomach growling, gut churning hunger at some point on each day.

On all three days I had eggs and breakfast meats for breakfast, with either a little bit of fruit, or no carbs. I had very small lunches, low calories, also low carb. But Thursday dinner was a big fat 1/2 pound cheeseburger with some fries from Cook Out. Friday was pizza and beer at Asheville Pizza and Brewery downtown. Saturday I had spaghetti with a lovely buffalo meat garden veggie sauce. And later Saturday night I ate dessert.

Weigh in on Saturday: 192.0 lbs.

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A perfect shit storm has hit me lately: health, family, household, etc. I have a broken arm, along with insomnia and jet lag (awful combination), my dog died on Tuesday, and then so did my fridge (the repair was expensive). Add to that an unpleasant, sad anniversary on Wednesday that I’d rather not discuss in my public gym notebook… my life feels shadowed by a melancholy gloom and doom.

I ate well all day on Wednesday, but then went a little haywire after dark. This is a very old eating pattern for me. Not my ideal.

Day started at 5:20 am with only about 3 hours of sleep. Coffee w/ half half. About 8:00 am, I had a breakfast of three eggs scrambled in butter, plus a banana. And 12 oz. milk. More coffee w/ half half. At lunchtime, say 1 pm, I had spinach, a cup of leftover brown rice, and two cans (8 oz) of sardines packed in olive oil. I ate the oil too… nice dressing. Dinner was shrimp in butter, and broccoli. Plus another 12 oz glass of whole milk.

Later I drank whiskey, ate .75 QT of vanilla ice cream (refrozen after the fridge got fixed, and barely edible), some jelly beans I found in the cupboard, about 4 oz of cheddar cheese, and 2 oz, of almonds.

I justify my behavior to myself with all kinds of excuses. I have no pain meds and can’t fall asleep at a reasonable hour even on only 3 hours of sleep… so whiskey seems right. Plus it’s a memorial libation for Marshall, and Jude. Etc. I have watched my mom make excuses like this. She’s still excusing herself at 70 years old. Maybe I can get a better grip.

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14 days ago I posted a food journal entry. 13 days ago I broke my left arm skimboarding. I haven’t posted much. I have some pictures and video of me skimboarding this summer, and x-rays, and post op photos. I’ll publish them all here in good time. I plan a post about pipoboarding. I wish the photos and vids were of higher quality and didn’t show off my gangly sports style, but whatever.

I’ve continued to eat the way I have. Light or no lunch. Protein heavy breakfast with minimal fruit or other carbs. Veggies, a little starch, and meat for dinner. Night time cheating with (small amounts of) alcohol and (rather larger amounts of) sweets and sugar. I’ve been nearly 100% gluten free over the past two weeks. I’ve added glasses of milk and whey protein also, since breaking the arm.

No working out at all. Strictly mobility and stretching.

Weigh in on Tuesday, Aug. 9th, 3:30 pm: 190.5 lbs.

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food tuesday july 26th 2011

coffee w/ half and half

weigh-in: 197.0 lbs

about 9:00 am
bites of leftover sausage and egg from kids breakfast

about 11:15 am
2 egg omelete fried in butter w/ fat slice of monterrey jack cheese
1 large grapefruit

about 1:30 pm
medium sized bowl of ground beef with tomato, spinach, and basil

selzter water

iced coffee w/ half half

a few raspberries, blueberries, and slices of banana, a sip of Yael’s beer, and maybe one bite of the kids’ dinner (see below for description)

surfing session (before and after: lemon ginger green tea… awesome pre and post cold water surfing)

… then

10:00 pm (post surfing)
white rice, pinto beans, large serving of chicken enchillada casserole (4 corn tortillas, chicken, musrooms, green chili sauce, monterrey jack, mexican farmer’s crumble, and cheddar cheeses, el pato sauce)

glass of tequilla with ice

piece of candy from Bruce’s: “dark chocolate peanut butter bar”

bowl of vanilla ice cream with boysenberry syrup (yes it has HFCS but I love it)

seltzer water

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Food Journal for Monday, July 25th

Weigh-in 198 lbs

Coffee w/ half
A little heartburn and stomach sour this am
2 eggs fried in bacon grease
1 large banana
Coffee w/ half

Seltzer water
Coffee w/ half

Late Lunch:
One pulled pork taco: corn tortilla toasted in bacon grease, kale, pulled pork (a few ounces), Valentina sauce.
A small number of leftover French fries

Walk on the beach

4:30-6:30 pm: shot of vodka, club soda and lemon x 2

For dinner: white rice with home made ground beef and tomato sauce with fresh basil and spinach

Nighttime binge while reading:
Whiskey and club soda
Vanilla and Mint Chocolate chip ice cream with home made “hot fudge” <– quantity: large; this was serious binge behavior!

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This pathetic entry covers almost an entire week in which I didn’t compose new entries. Wednesday, July 13th (21), Thursday, July 14th (22), Friday, July 15th (23), Saturday, July 16th (24), Sunday, July 17th (25), and Monday, July 18th (26).

Days start out pretty well, usually. My morning meals have not been stellar, but they are ok. It’s always first coffee with half and half or milk. Then we usually have breakfast. It’s eggs, sometimes with cheese, and whatever breakfast meat we happen to have on hand, such as bacon or sausage or even smoked salmon. For carbs it’s fruit, or oatmeal, corn tortillas, or even none. On at least one of these days (today, day 26) my breakfast has been ridiculous. It was leftover pork ribs and a large slice of pizza. I kid you not. I give myself: B- grade on breakfasts.

Daytime snacks and lunch: I mostly haven’t been doing ‘snacks’ or ‘lunch’. With some exceptions, like, sitting on the beach after surfing yesterday I had peanuts and corn chips. Or occasionally I will have a tablespoon of almond butter, some fruit, a handful of peanuts, that kind of thing. Lunch is often skipped, or is leftover meats, with a little bit of fruit. I find that lunch tends to interfere with mid-day activity on the beach or in lifting, surfing, etc. Sometimes this means that “lunch” looks like a daytime snack. Grade on lunch and snacks: C+.

Dinner has been the main meal of the day, and usually the healthiest, with the exception of day 25, where we had Pizza. I can’t recall at present (end of day 26) what I ate last Wednesday. That’s not surprising. There has been fish stew and spinach (day 26), pizza, salad and crab (day 25), salmon, carrots, and green beans (day 24), bbq pork ribs, mashed potatoes, and broccoli (day 23); other meals, of which I am less certain of the timing, include ground beef with tomatotes, broccoli, kale, and zucchini (probably day 21). With the exception of Pizza dinner and cheating I have been probably 95% gluten free. Grade on dinner: B+.

Alcohol: “never on a school night” has not been in effect. But then, it’s not a “school night.” Beer, wine, liquor. All has been fair game. During the day, not so much (I have grown very fond of having a beer after surfing, though). Up to kid bed time, I am very restrained and discreet. After dinner, the later I stay up, the more I drink, it seems. Especially when the house is filled with old friends as it was over the weekend of the 15th-17th (days 23-24-25). Grade: F.

Post-dinner binge eating: yes. My sweet tooth is in total effect. Chocolate and butter (i.e. fudge sauce), random candies left lying around by the kids, ice cream, cheddar cheese, almond butter, even Pizza (on nights 25 and 26). Grade: D+

Weigh-in: 192.0. What this tells me is that, pretty obviously, whatever I am doing is not hurting the “bottom” line.

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Friday July 8th 2011

Lousy sleep and only 11 hours of fasting under my belt when I ate breakfast at 8:30 am:

Coffee w/ half half
3 eggs fried in butter
Leftover kale greens made w/ onion, olive oil and salt
Fried leftover russet potato (a couple of oz)
Sausage patties (maybe 3 oz)
Two small gluten free pancakes
Apple cinnamon syrup (homemade)

Later: coffee w/ half half
Couple of spoonfuls of peanut butter
Couple of strawberries

After workout at 2:00 pm:
1 beer

2 rockfish tacos: rockfish, lime butter, sour cream, pico de gallo, corn tortillas
corn chips, strawberries, more sour cream and pico de gallo
1 gluten free chocolate chip cookie

… very satisfying post-workout eating …

iced coffee w/ half and half; shot of Kahlua in dere

for dinner, about 6:00 pm:
sweet potatoes, several oz
lacinato kale, about a cup
broccoli, about 1/2 cup
10 oz steak
shot of whiskey

post dinner snackage… it’s Friday and the folks are back in town… I kept nibbling for a while… while finishing a novel in an easy chair. Didn’t stop eating until about 11:00 pm.

shot of vodka, shot of whiskey
almonds and chocolate chips
vanilla ice cream and strawberries
cheddar cheese and salami

Definitely a cheat day!

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Thursday, July 7th, 2011

Ate breakfast at 8:30 am, after 13.5 hours of fasting. Got about 10 hours of sleep overnight, almost unbroken (except for a brief get up from 5:10 to 5:20 am, during which time I decided to bail on surfing). Felt awesome.

Wild Salmonberry from the margins of Oswald West State Park in Oregon

8:30 to 9:15 am
Coffee w/ half and half
3 smallish gluten free pancakes with butter and real maple syrup.
4 oz. or so of breakfast sausage patties
2 eggs fried in butter

After breakfast:
more coffee w/ half half

Around “lunchtime”
very small piece of leftover breakfast sausage
more coffee w/ half and half

Note: for some reason, I’m just not interested in lunch. Truth be told, I didn’t much feel like eating breakfast either, at least, not until I started eating it!

On a walk with the kids in the late afternoon: a few wild salmonberries. They are peaking right now. Slightly sweet, slightly sour, slightly bitter. Strange and wonderful.
For dinner about 6:00 pm: a handful of corn chips, rockfish tacos (4 of them) with six corn tortillas, totalling about 57g carbs), with lime butter, sour cream, and fresh pico de gallo, and probably about 10 oz of grilled rockfish. Perfection. Plus 1/2 cup of white rice, some boiled carrots, and sauteed spinach. At the end: a couple of small squares of dark chocolate.

For dessert at about 9:00 pm: 3 gluten free homemade chocolate chip cookies, about 1/2 pint of vanilla ice cream; a very small number corn chips. And to bed early.

So, yes, I ‘violated’ my eating window, and rules against refined grains (pancakes, cookies, tortillas) and sugar (ice cream, cookies). But I feel ok. And overall, it was not a particularly “high calorie” day.

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Thursday, June 30th, 2011

Been pretty good today, so far… not counting the refined grain products in my lunch.

Coffee w/ half and half before breakfast

Breakfast about 8:30 am: 3 egg and sausage omelette fried in butter, cantaloupe

Coffee w/ half and half while grading.

Lunch about 12:30 pm: large cod fish and chip “taco” (medium sized flour tortilla, salsa, cole slaw and cabbage, deep fried battered cod)

Second lunch about 1:30 pm: medium sized serving of leftover beef/zucchini enchillada (corn tortilla, tomato, sauce, onion, zucchini, grass fed ground beef, butter, enchillada sauce, 4 cheese mix)

Sparkling water

Coffee w/ half and half… and more grading.

I had missed a glorious day at the beach while working on finishing up summer school classes. But I finished grading and filing grades, and that was done. To celebrate that, and the arrival of my parents, and the early arrival of the sun on this fourth of july weekend, I had a whiskey.

Everything went very well through dinner. For dinner, it was carrots, potatoes, green cauliflower, stewed beef shank and marrow bone, and mushrooms saute├ęd with bacon. And a beer.

After dinner, I had more of my homemade strawberry ice cream; good flavor, terrible ice cream texture. I also had the last few of those star cookies I mentioned yesterday. And some chocolate truffles. And a little more whiskey.

Things were ok for a while, but my sister and her kids arrived sometime around 10:00 pm. She brought bags of food which I unpacked. Among the items: gluten free almond cookies, chocolate chip cookies, coconut cookies, and many other goodies. I had another glass of whiskey. And various cookies. And raspberries, and cheese. And more chocolate. And truly, I lost track of what I ate, or how many times I went back to the kitchen counter. Basically, I went on a binge. I stayed up too late, ate too much, drank too much, and

Not sure what happened to my inner nutritional warrior. He sure wasn’t with me last night. I guess that, like me, he… is on vacation?

What can I learn from Thursday? I notice a pretty clear pattern in my behavior, which is that you get a couple of drinks in me, bring on the night, and I start to forget things that seem much more important to me in the morning. Things like, getting enough sleep, or healthy eating (e.g. avoiding sweets, keeping a daily fast).

Given the realities of the upcoming family holiday weekend… a beach house, ample stocks of booze and food, and my normally more relaxed attitude towards these things on Fridays and Saturdays, I can guess I won’t return to intermittent fasting until Sunday. That’s ok. It really is.

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I stopped eating about 11:00 pm on Tuesday. On Wednesday…

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011.

Yeah. I ignored my food journal all day on Wednesday, and have left the recording of what I ate until now, Thursday morning. Even though this post is published on Wednesday, I am actually writing it Thursday morning.

One of the benefits/challenges of keeping a food journal is that it requires you to focus more on what you are eating. This is necessary just so that you can remember it later to write it down! Now, in my experience, if you persist in keeping the journal for a month or two, that extra act of attention eventually pays dividends, the most important of which is a more conscious way of eating.

I am not there yet in this most recent round of journalling. Remembering my food intake from yesterday is going to be a bit difficult. It was classic Baldwin: pretty solid all day long, then, I willfully broke the rules I had laid out for myself at night. Two days in a row of breaking the rules of intermittent fasting… not cool. Time to reset and review.

It was a much higher carb day, and a day in which I didn’t worry too much about the “rules.” I should have, since I basically discarded them at nighttime.

Morning: up pretty early with the kids (like 5:45 am). Not having maintained my fast from Tuesday, I didn’t worry about getting an early start on food. I ate breakfast early (by about 7:00 am). 3 egg whites and 2 whole eggs, scrambled in butter. Sausage patty, cantaloupe. Coffee w/ half-half.

Snacks during the morning until lunchtime: bites of strawberry. Bites of crap the kids were eating: from yogurt covered raisins, to strawberries, to cheddar cheese, to beef jerkey.

Lunchtime: two chicken apple sausages and roasted zuchini and green cauliflower w/ olive oil and salt (leftovers from Tuesday dinner).

Afternoon: went to a coffee shop to work, had coffee w/ espresso and half/half.

Dinnertime: I made ground beef enchilladas, with my favorite cheating grain based food, corn tortillas. Corn tortillas, local grass fed ground beef, red onion, zucchnini, tomato, enchillada sauce, mexican cheese, and white rice on the side. I ate a large plate of it and felt stuffed. I had sparkling water with dinner.

After dinner: kid bedtime came quickly, it seemed. It was 8:00 pm already and I still felt like eating. I didn’t worry too much about starting my fasting window… maybe I should have.

From 8:00 pm to 10:30 pm I had: at least two LARGE scoops of my homemade strawberry icecream, some chocolate, and a large number of these small, funky, frosting covered organic star cookies that we brought from Asheville. Oops. These should be doubly off-limits to me: they are basically animal crackers, made with wheat flour and sugar, of course, covered with a light candy frosting that is mainly sugar, and comes in various flavors: cinnamon, chocolate, raspberry yogurt, peanut butter, etc.

I won’t try to calculate my caloric intake or anything. But it seems appropriate to record my body weight at this time.

Thursday AM: 192.8 lbs

This tells me that, whatever else may be the case, although I seem generally unable to stick to the rules of my own nutritional “plan warpath,” so far I have not undone my larger intention, which is to reign in unwanted weight gain and lose some pounds.

The only thing is that I know I will get better results if I can stick closer to the plan.