Michael's blog

Sweat silhouette

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Sweat silhouetteI laid down on the cool, shaded concrete in our front yard yesterday morning after a short (for me) run, and in little time created a pretty full silhouette from my cascade of perspiration. Yes, it was hot out there, even though I went earlier than almost ever, expressly to try to beat the heat. Also, because we had appointments to keep, I ran in the neighborhood, which is hillier than I would prefer to be running in.

Garden report, part 1

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I've gotten a tremendous amount of aid in various support groups. When I started visiting them as an adjunct to therapy, my main focus was on food. I thought I was there to lose weight, and I was shocked and amazed to gain so much in accomplishment, community, and happiness. It got to be so that, when I would speak in those groups, after having dropped 160 pounds or so, I would say something like, "it's not about the food."

I now see that as insensitive revisionism. Until I dropped the weight, it was definitely about the food, even if it was also about other stuff.

I'm reminded of that as I check in about my experience as a member of the Robbins Farm gardening group. We are 15 people who are jointly farming a small plot of land at Robbins Farm Park, which is about a block from where we live in Arlington. Unlike most community gardens, we are not separate gardeners working connected plots. We're a cooperative group, working one plot of land together. 


I misunderstood when I heard about this story, or the person telling me about it did. It speaks of a diet, and of course that usually means a temporary change in food regimen, but in this case, the reference to diet is about clothing.

The way it was explained to me, people who'd lost weight had chosen to stick with six garments only until their weight had stabilized, so that they didn't end up with a range of sizes for the long run.

I see now that this makes no sense, but what it recalled for me were the days when I was dropping from 365 to about 200, where I remain today 20 years later. Except for a couple of size 64 sweatpants that I bought (slightly oversized for what I needed) — while I was in rehab, I got rid of every stitch I owned, and eventually disposed of everything I'd bought to replace it on the way down, because that stuff no longer fit, either.

Kids who binge eat

A study at the University of Pittsburgh found evidence of binge eating in youngsters, leading its authors to argue that the condition should be accounted for in weight-management programs designed for severely overweight kids.

"Children in the Binge Eating Group were younger and had more depressive, anxiety, and eating-disorder symptoms, and lower self-esteem," the study found.

Film explores the local-food movement

The Coolidge Corner Theatre continues its Green Screens film series at 7 Thursday night with a one-night only presentation of "Ingredients," a documentary that explores the local food movement.

Tickets are $9.75, but $6.75 for seniors and free to Coolidge Corner Theatre members. You can get them at coolidge.org or at the Coolidge box office, 290 Harvard St., Brookline. You get a free reusable bag with admission (because you don't have enough of them already). Still, a freebie is still a freebie.

The "extinction burst"

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Interesting term, interesting idea, from David McRaney, proprietor of the blog You Are Not So Smart, which I came across yesterday. 

The concept is an echo, if not an analog, of Dylan Thomas's "Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night," applied to bad eating habits. 

You’ve been there.

You get serious about losing weight and start to watch every calorie. You read labels, stock up on fruit and vegetables, hit the gym.

Say hi to Mama

I recently ran across the Shrinking Mama blog, telling the story of Melissa, a 31-year-old mom of two who is, or was, up near 400 pounds. 'Least, I think that's right; in her bio, she declines to say how much, though she does keep a running weekly total of her weight loss, which stands around 60 pounds since March 18. She says she needs to drop 150 to be healthy.

I can relate a lot to what she says, of course, such as this passage from her bio:



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