on mulligans…

Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.

Henry Ford

Well, here we are again.

I'm 48 years old, 6 feet tall, and 285 pounds. I am middle-aged and obese. I still have hypertension, dyslipidemia, Type II Diabetes, and severe obstructive sleep apnea - not to mention Bipolar Disorder, anxiety, and depression. Every day, I take 5 prescriptions for metabolic and mood disorders. Every night, I sleep with the assistance of a CPAP device.

If that sounds familiar, it should. Last June, my wife and I set out to improve our health. I dieted and exercised for about two months. In that time I lost nearly 30 pounds. But, ultimately, I let a setback push me off track, and I never got back on.

Now, I'm trying a different program. It's called Take Shape for Life. It uses prepackaged meal replacements from Medifast. And, it involves a game called The Meltdown Challenge.

I'm supposed to eat six times a day: five meal replacements, and one "lean and green" meal. I'm supposed to drink 100 ounces of water a day. And, I'm supposed to check in with a health coach at least weekly.

Frankly, I was pretty skeptical. The diet works out to less than 1,000 calories a day, which is well below the recommended minimum caloric intake for men. No wonder they tell you not to start exercising at first. You're not eating enough calories to have any to spend on working out.

So, I'm a couple of weeks in and I have some observations:

  • My health coach is an amazingly positive person.
  • The game is a fun way of getting sucked into staying on track.
  • The meal replacements mostly suck.
  • I'm not nearly as hungry as I thought I would be.
  • I'm surprised at how easy it is to drink 100+ ounces of water.

Progress so far: 12 pounds down. Check back in a while to see if I was able to maintain such a low calorie diet.

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