Consolation: Still Under 40

Today, in fact the very moment I have scheduled this post to go up, I am creeping ever closer to being the stereotypical FMAWG (Fat Middle-Aged White Guy) of our opponent’s imaginations. It’s kind of funny how people say middle-aged to generally mean people in their late 40s and 50s, when it’s conceivable your life is half over, possibly, even in your late 30s. Especially for me, considering one grandfather made it to 76, and the other shuffled off his mortal coil at 59 in a case of chain smoking, raging alcoholism and poor diet that eventually lead to diabetes and shortly after a stroke.

Given that, I am making a concerted effort, at 38, to get into better shape. I’m trying to walk at least a mile every day, and do two miles three times a week, weather permitting. Cutting back on liquor, beer, and wine, and laying off the candy when I’m in the office. I just don’t want the extra calories. My goal is to drop weight slowly, just like I put it on.

But hey, today’s my birthday, so screw all that. I’m going to eat some cake with a bourbon chaser, after going out for wings and beer. Bitter is making me yellow cake with chocolate frosting, which has been my gold standard since I was a kid. And I still have the cake dish my mother used to use.

52 thoughts on “Consolation: Still Under 40”

  1. Happy birthday! As for exercise, why do today what you can put off ’till tomorrow.

  2. Happy B-Day man. And yea, Ive been putting off the exercise for too long as well.

  3. Happy Birthday!! I like your plan.

    I was 264 Pounds at end of November. I am down to 234 today. 30 pounds and 234 still seems high. So I am aiming for 225 first then rearranging for run at 200. Walking is great! You will see things in the neighborhood you never noticed. 8 cups of water a day!
    I quite drinking at 42, and smoking at 38. Now I cut down ice cream and cake to once a month.
    I use the MyFitnessPal app. It helps me.

    1. I easily get the 8 cups of, well, a substance that is mostly water and has no sugar a day. I’d love to get to 200, which is basically my ideal weight. But I’d be happy to drop to 220.

      1. “no sugar”

        To commute Dr. Lustig; Alcohol is fructose with a buzz.
        But Happy Birthday anyway. :)

        1. Chemically that’s just not true. Your body treats alcohol differently from sugar. That’s not to say that either is good for you in excess, but they are not the same chemistry.

          1. If it weren’t chemically different it wouldn’t have the buzz (caused by a neurotoxic . . . sugar). However, while ethanol is not a sugar, it is a carbohydrate. We are not contexually interested in the differences in breakdown products, but the similarities; sugars and fats.

            The term “beer belly” preexisted our knowledge of the body chemistry that causes it.

            For that matter sugar is chemically different from sugar (see my usage above), which is why I didn’t use the word myself, I used fructose (I got a bit sloppy with alcohol though).

            Have you watched Dr. Lustig’s analysis (he runs it the other way around to indict fructose) of this, or it’s equivalent?

            1. Ethanol is not a sugar, nor is it a carbohydrate. Ethanol is an alcohol. Different chemical family.

              Any doctor saying that alcohol is metabolized the same as alcohol doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Ethanol metabolism in the body is well understood. The alcohol is oxidized by a liver enzyme called alcohol dehydrogenase. It’s sole purpose is for the metabolization of alcohols. The oxidation process leads to acetaldehyde, which is an aldehyde. This in turn gets oxidized into acidic acid (vinegar) by acetaldehyde dehydrogenase. The acidic acid gets secreted from the kidneys. The body’s chemistry for alcohol is focused on getting rid of it. It’s an exothermic process, but there’s no path that allows alcohol to be converted to fat.

              The biological research on this is pretty interesting. In heavy drinkers, the body actually tends to waste most alcohol calories as heat. It doesn’t get converted into energy the body can make use of. But in moderate drinkers, it can be converted into energy cells can use, and thus can augment other calories taken in, making them more likely to be stored as fat if they are excessive.

              Carbohydrate metabolism depends on the carb you’re speaking of, but sugar can be directly used by cells to synthesize ATP, which is direct energy for cells. Cells can also store fatty acids, which can also be released if needed and used in ATP synthesis. Carbs are quite different than alcohols. Our bodies run off carbs, whereas our bodies treat alcohol as a foreign toxin to get rid of.

              Too much time in working in biotech talking to biologists who display a probable unhealthy interest in alcohol metabolism. Given the shape the company was in, can’t say I blame them :)

  4. 1) Happy Birthday
    2) Last night, another couple, my wife & I decided to make a bet to run 100 miles and do 2000 push-ups each by the end of May (Pools Open).

    This sounds like a like but it works out to 1.5mi and 30 push-ups a day on average.

    If anyone doesn’t make it they have to pay for dinner at the end.

    If you want join the challenge we can try to make it a Gun Blogger challenge as well and if you don’t make it you have to write a check to the 2nd Amendment Foundation.


      1. The “bet” is simply to be a motivator and if you cheat it is your own conscious, I can’t police integrity.

        If you “win” you are more fit before pool time and if you “lose” you give money to SAF.

        But if your not intrested… so be it.

        Happy Birthday anyway!

  5. Happy B-Day, dude!

    Also as a shooter look into seeing what you can do to pack on upper body muscle mass. Stronger arms shoulders and chest will give you more strength to hold that gun steady offhand. Also the more muscle you have on board the higher your resting metabolism is, which means you’re losing weight even when you’re typing blog posts or sitting at your desk at work.

    Just from circumstances I took a two month vacation from shooting, but in that two months I was doing my best to sling around a cheap set of Target free weights about 3x per week and even with the amount of rust that can accumulate from taking time off from the range, the added muscle strength in my upper body actually IMPROVED my shooting from the last trip.

    Further I was down a pants size, and looked a lot better in the mirror. Win Win!

    Good luck, it ain’t much fun, but well worth it.

        1. I spent a summer rowing around a lake my family owns land on. That’ll beef you up right proper….AND take you to where the fishies are!

          Canoeing is good too, and it’ll beef you up right proper!

          Just be careful not to get TOO good looking. People might judge you if you’re too beautiful! :D

  6. Happy birthday, Sebastian! And thank you for all you do for the cause. :-D

  7. Happy Birthday….41 today myself…and have dropped about 30 pounds since last summer through exercise and diet!

    Good luck and enjoy your birthday cake!

  8. As John Glenn said, “There is no cure for the common birthday.” Have a happy one and many more!

    BTW, Glenn was 40 when he took his first ride to orbit.

    1. I have always called that the “Stop eating so damn much diet.” Combine it with exercise and the weight falls off. Just don’t skip breakfast, because you need to get your body out of the starvation mode.

      1. I dropped a lot of weight when I was hiking every weekend. Hiking with even a day pack on burns a metric buttload of calories, and while you’re spending a day hiking, you’re not spending a day snacking.

        1. That’s still only .84 of an Imperial buttload. But, Happy Birthday anyway!

          I switched the candy jar at work for Dum-Dums and peppermints. Kills cravings with only a small calorie hit.

  9. Happy birthday–but take a look at the symptoms of insulin resistance. I have made substantial progress on my weight and health since the endocrinologist discovered that was my problem.

    1. I don’t seem to have any symptoms of that disorder. Generally speaking, I feel pretty good. Since I’ve been walking I’m more attentive and have more energy, and am generally in a better mood.

      The reason I gained weight is not a mystery. I wasn’t eating as much in unemployment, so I lost a bit. After unemployment ended, I pigged out and started filling my pants again.

      I gain weight because I eat too much, and like wine, beer, and bourbon. Need to cut down on all of them to drop weight, but if I do, I will drop. I’ve done it before.

      1. In my last visit to my internist we were discussing ways for me to increase my HDL cholesterol. In addition to exercising more (esp. with weights) and increasing my intake of fish for the Omega-3, a drink a day was suggested. It seems moderate intake does help raise the HDL so don’t cut it out entirely.

  10. Happy Birthday dude!

    I’m about to hit 50 in April, and also need to shed alot of weight. Problem is I’m diabetic, and the drugs to lower my blood sugar make it crash if I don’t eat often enuff, I have found that if I don’t take my sugar meds, and don’t eat, my sugar levels out nicely. but fasting for days isn’t fun so it keeps getting put off…….

  11. Happy BDay Sebastian! As I am basically in the same age-range that you are, I also am striving to get into better cardio-vascular shape.

    Having a 4-month old German Shepherd will hopefully help me in that endeavor…!

    Take Care and keep up the outstanding work that you both Bitter and yourself are doing! STO LAT!

  12. happy bday! Where do I need to be and what time for some of that cake? Love me some yellow chocolate cake!

    1. It’s mine! All mine! You can have my yellow cake with chocolate icing on it when you pry it from my cold, dead, deliciously chocolate frosted fingers!

  13. Happy Birthday…. You are considerd “middle age” when you double your age and almost no one lives that long. I am 65. I am old.

  14. Happy birthday! You share the day with my father, who does one pushup a day for every year he’s been alive. 76 didn’t give him any trouble today, so it’s obviously possible to stay healthy at any age!

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