We make holes in teeth!

Friday, August 31, 2007

I'm a Photographer!

In the ever present struggle to be less fat I have adopted the (presumably) Buddhist approach of chewing my food slowly and taking time to eat all my meals. I admit I choose to call this a Buddhist approach because it sounds cooler than just saying that I'm taking my time eating. But in some ways it is actually more than that.

I started this week on a tip I read on the board in a thread about weight loss. After I did, it immediately struck me that both Nat and I eat far too fast. Our excuse would be that we have a kid, but the reality is that we probably ate like this before Julia. Now that I'm slowing down I watch Nat (and my mother on Wednesday) more or less slaughter their food. It's amazing what slowing down will do.

They say it's better for your digestion and it raises your metabolism but for me the results need to be more tangible, and they are. First of all I enjoy my food significantly more when I take time to taste it. It's amazing how we associate food with how full it makes us as much as how it tastes. The second effect is that I'm just as full, or more full, with less food.

Another side effect is that it changes meals from an all-encompassing experience to a more integrated experience. Without realizing it, I believe many of us totally focus on finishing the food and block out our surroundings. Putting down your fork and slowly chewing, and tasting, your food makes the whole experience more enjoyable, more integrated with life.

My peanut butter and jelly sandwich took almost an hour to eat yesterday at lunch. That sounds excessive and maybe it is, but I just took a bite and slowly ate it instead of consuming it as fast as I could. The inordinate amount of time was due to the fact I was doing my normal thing at work and eating a sandwich on the side as opposed to stopping my life to eradicate a sandwich. My experience does not jive entirely with the article linked above. When I focus on my food entirely, it has a much shorter shelf life.

Now, I know many people do something once and proclaim themselves that entity through and through, men in particular. We buy a camera and say we're photographers. A lot of us have been groomed by the fast pace of the Internet, where ADD rules the roost. The irony (or paradox?) isn't lost on me. After less than a week I've jumped on some new (to me) fad and all of the sudden I'm a Buddhist Eater, a notion diametrically opposed to the whole ADD nation? But then did that ADD Nation Syndrome lead to my doing that?

I know, I know, next week I'll be into Shinto Bug Ingestion but for now this is my newest approach in an effort to drop pounds. So far so good, though the weekend isn't here yet. This morning I was 190 which is good, since I've dropped the excessive weight from last week's foray.
Aside from slow eating I do plan on riding my bike this weekend. Plans are for a 3 day tour of the Labor Day weekend, all off-road if that's possible, or desirable. It's looking like Sunday will be a loop of Chimney Rock with Chris and then possibly a second loop after that. I'm considering some high-end stuff tomorrow on the road bike or a hard 2 hours at LM. Monday will be dictated by the other 2 days. That could end up being my big mileage day instead.

Next week I'm going to offset the days a bit. I'm going to ride Wed/Thu then something light Saturday and the Chain Stretcher on Sunday. I'm going to try and be a bit more fresh for this one. The course is supposed to be more rugged so I'm looking forward to it.

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  • At 1:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Excellent stuff, Norm.

    Thich Nhat Hanh has written quite a bit about the idea of "eating mindfully." I totally buy into it.

    Shinto Bug Ingestion, I'll have to look into after dinner..

    -ChrisG (Google is being a pain in my ass and not accepting my password)


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