Like many of you January the first is known as the day I start a diet to lose weight gained over the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. Things were going great for me till early December (even ran a half-marathon on December 2) but since then my training schedule has included a lot of “rest days” and not a lot of running. This is a combination of cold weather, rain, a busy schedule, and just being lazy.
To get myself back into running shape I have taken on one of the most horrific experiences anyone could experience…the VLC diet. This is short for Very Low Calorie Diet and involves drinking meal replacement shakes for two meals a day (in my case breakfast and lunch) along with healthy snacks about every two hours. The good news is this diet works and within a few weeks you will lose weight, the bad news is your body has gotten used to consuming way too many calories a day. Just to be clear this is a short-term diet and not a long-term eating plan in my opinion but it is an ideal way to lose weight in a few weeks.
One reason I don’t want to start the VLC program again is the calorie withdraw symptoms, but there is a more important one. During those two weeks (particularly the first few days) it’s almost impossible to hide things such as my impatience, and anger.
All of us get annoyed by things in life…from the long lines at Wal-Mart, to slow traffic, opinionated people, and stress. Most of the time we are able to control that frustration and once again become mild-mannered Dr. David Banner instead of revealing our inner Incredible Hulk to everyone. But while on a diet of any kind (VLC included) that self-control or discipline is lost.
That’s the problem with diets…..they let people see the real me.
Oh don’t worry folks I won’t be on the nightly news being handcuffed by the police after raiding a local Hostess factory, but it is surprising how angry I have been for the last two days, which makes me wonder if that frustration over every little thing is normally buried under a mountain of empty calories. I am going to stick with the VLC for at least two weeks, not just because this gives enough time to break bad eating habits or lose weight, but it reveals the part of me that I have been trying to hide. And with the Lords help that two-week period can bring spiritual and emotional healing as well as physical.
So start that diet today guys and take the first step towards spiritual growth. Just do me a favor and try to stay out of my way for a few weeks…you won’t like me when I’m angry.