Adding Cardio/ Aerobic Exercise

My ultimate fitness goal is to be about 220 pounds at 9.4% body fat.  This allows me to round down mathematically and I would finally have achieved at single digit body fat percentage, placing me in the top .01% of the USA population and .001% for my age group.  It wasn’t always this way as I have struggled with body fat especially belly and back fat since I was about 11 and I split my head wide open on the second day of summer vacation.  That summer was long continuous meal of pasta, butter, Parmesan cheese ( KRAFT), milk shakes Ice Cream and anything soft.  It had to be something like that because my nerves and muscles were all severed on my left side. The injury wound across my face behind my ear and stopped just short of my ear lobe. I could look and see my ear laying on my shoulder.  That was interesting.

This proves I am not right in the head.

I should have made the connectionthen between diet and body shape then.  Pasta? Milk Shake? Mashed Potatoes?  But I blamed the copious amounts of butter or margarine that were leveled on these things. For flavor. But we knew that FAT was bad for us as we were low fat because of my Dad’s heart disease. What we were really doing was slowly killing him by limiting his bacon and butter and eggs. So after that summer I grew up a fat kid. Teased. I hated having to buy the HUSKY boys clothes at Sears. Sometimes I would try jogging. Or weight lifting but I didn’t get the fantastic results I saw others getting and I wasn’t really interested in wasting my time.

Me at the age of 22. Likely very high and a bit drunk.

Instead I gravitated towards mischief and mind altering substances.  I find the magic of bodily chemistry way to engaging.  That passion is still a talent I use today, but in a more credible light– in pouring over my nutrition and application of that information and then sharing it.

Things changed for me after I gained some level of sobriety at the age of 25.  I began to work out.  Lifting weights. eating properly, I thought. I met a gal who was into aerobics so I did the same along with lifting.  I used the mantra we had been taught, that of calories in and calories out (CICO) along with MOVE MORE, EAT LESS. This will work when you are 27 because the years of metabolic inflexibility have not yet created a foundation of poor health and insulin resistance. After our subsequent marriage and divorce I met a lovely lady marathon runner to whom I said “Hey I’ll go running with you” That woman took me on a ten mile run, 3 days in a row.  I hurt and was sore but damn I was hooked!!  After we broke up I was talking to her and I mentioned I was thinking about running the Lake Geneva Marathon. She scoffed and said I wasn’t ready and I only had 4 weeks till the race. BAM! INCENTIVE! I finished just over 3 ½ hours. 26.2 miles.  And I wasn’t done. I began marathon running. Until my back injuries and weight gain.  I couldn’t understand as I was eating heart healthy oats and cereals and still gaining weight running 70 mile weeks. I mean WTAF?! I know better now.

My early running physique.

So for many years identified as being a runner. THIS was my identity. No matter where we went I could be seen running.  I loved running so much that we were at Governor Dodge State Park and I went for ten miles. I twisted my ankle at about 3.  I took off my tee shirt and made a splint ankle wrap. I continued on until I again twisted my ankle this time into an in-ground wasp nest. OUCH.  I limped back. I saw my wife , lounging and reading a book.  I stealthily got past her, doctored up the ankle and was taking the kayak off the roof of the Toyota 4Runner when I heard “WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING?”

 Sheepishly I turned and said” kayaking?”

“You’re HURT! What did you do?”

I explained. “You are not going kayaking”

 “But, I could keep my foot elevated while paddling”

Hell froze over.

No, instead we packed up and I got to experience my wife’s driving for 3 hours.  We got home and I was told no, stay in the truck, you’re going to the ER. Sprained in three ligaments. Sigh.

When I began keto I also began to lift again after years of doing no fitness due to the spinal injuries. As I progressed I didn’t have pain so I did more and more. AND still am.

My local cardiologist suggested I add cardio.  Now I have argued with him at almost every single point. I decided to let him have a win. His belief was built upon BMI studies, not muscle mass. My understanding is the greater the muscle mass the greater the longevity. We both agreed that sarcopenia was to be avoided. We disagreed on by how much.  So sure, I will add cardio. But what to do? I can’t run because I am afraid of aggravating those old injuries.  Yes they are mainly healed BUT the idea that they could become injured again is enough to prevent me from trying to hard.  But what about cross country skiing?

Practice of my wipe-outs is critical.

It has been great. I started New Year’s Day with 2 miles in my front field.  I was having so much fun I bought a GARMIN Forerunner 235 on sale for $239 from $359. This past weekend I did 6.5 & 5.89. Altogether this month I have done about 33.4 ( about!!) total miles.  Looking forward to upgrading my bicycle and kayak for a full throttle summer.  But for now it’s all about the skiing. And when the weather says go inside its still about lifting heavy things repetitively. On this I will talk more later.

Today it is snowing a great amount.  5 inches so far and still blowing.  After I left work I prepared to  go play in the snow. Today was a scheduled  lifting day but I am being amendable by switching it up and letting circumstances dictate some of my behaviors.  The cardio/ski workout is great today as not only is it fresh powder but it is a fasting day. I will be 43 hours fasted when I hit the trails. Supposedly I should be able to access body fat at a higher percentage. I do this because by not eating I keep my insulin low and this allows me to use body fat. Insulin is rather binary. If I have higher levels of it my body is trying to store energy as fat rather than access that energy I stored last week as body fat. The person I trust the most when it comes to FAT metabolism is Professor Ben Bikman. You can find him on YouTube or his current book, Why We Get Sick I have been doing a 2 x 2 schedule.  Monday and Tuesday I don’t eat. Odin’s Day ( Wednesday) I eat. Thursday and Friday I don’t eat again. The weekend I eat.  I did six weeks prior to that on an alternative day fast.  I will be presenting my weight loss and feeling from each of these in the upcoming week or so. I am going to hold off for now what my results have been.

I look forward to sharing my cardiac results shortly. And my fasting results this time around.

Talk with all of you later.

A Fine Winter’s Day

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