Friday, May 21, 2010

A Slippery Slope

A recent comment on My Vegan Quest talked about the slippery slope of reintroducing meat into your diet.

It certainly is! It is sooo much easier to cut it all out!

Well, I need to put pride aside for honesty, and as painful as it is, it makes the story more intriguing and more realistic -- I just wish it was not my story!

I have been generally strong most of my days back into civilian life, but...
Yesterday, my gym work-out was quite intense, and I had more energy than I usually have. I did intense cardio for 40 minutes. Also, when I weighed myself I was just a couple of lbs heavier than May 1st. Those 7 lbs gained was significantly decreased - I lost 5 lbs this week. But!

Here is where my personality, un-tethered by strict abstinence, starts to creep in to my day-to-day life. So, I knock off 5 lbs this week (perhaps some water weight), and feeling really good about my work-outs in the gym. I decided to go to the brand new Pig 'n' Whistle on 36th Street for lunch and invited a client to join me. This is what I do best, hang out with clients and, yes, "entertain." The owner, Des, comes over to ask my thoughts on the new bar/restaurant (it's gorgeous), and we chat about my trip to Ireland. Being a former rugby player himself, we chat about Munster, and Foley, and Woodie. A wave of his hand to the bartender and a beer is front and center of me. "Thanks." It's the culture. Unless you are off the sauce completely, friendships are measured in free pints, not firm handshakes.

OK, good work out, losing the weight I gained on holiday, one beer is not going to kill me. But, that governor in my head that whisks me by the eggs in the morning, and the steak house at night, needs to show himself a little more. As I have mentioned numerous times, my job is often about socializing, and sitting in a pub, telling stories and getting back slaps from friends, acquaintances, and clients is a little like oxygen for me. And the big question is do I have to drink seltzer only, or can I live by 1 or 2 only? So far it has been only 1 or 2, but I am aware of the signs of slipping back into over-indulgence, and the signs are a tiny bit concerning for me. Now, a couple of beers with clients in the afternoon, say, once a month does no harm, but, but, I need to make sure it stays rather infrequent. And, an FYI, in sales it is commonly accepted and sanctioned at the highest levels in the organization that drinks over lunch sometimes with a client is normal. We've come a long way since Mad Men and the three martini lunch, but it is still a rather common practice less any of you accountants, or doctors, or teachers seem shocked by this.

Then, on top of all of this I had a date last night. Lovely girl, but she must have had an
 8 course meal before we met because she had no interest in eating dinner, unless by dinner you mean vodka 7's! Now, even though I am out of practice, I can still go toe to toe with anyone, but subtract dinner, and, well, it was a typical New York City date night -- start out at a nice sophisticated wine bar, and continue festivities at different gin joints until you end up at Doc Watson's, well past midnight, dancing the jig. The body is not built to live like that, and if you do it enough over years and years and you'll end up looking like Chris Farley. And the final blow? After a night like that I was starving, and what is open at 1 AM? Well, both PJ Clarke's and the Pig n Whistle serve food until 3 AM. There is a 24 hour diner around the corner. And finally, there is the Ray Bary's pizza parlor at the foot of my front door.

For years and years the site of a pizza box on my coffee table when I stumble to the shower in the morning would elicit just a head shake, and maybe a chuckle. This morning the sight of it elicited a loud curse word like I stepped on a safety pin or something.

Now, I am standing back and looking at my new life 3 weeks in. All in all, not bad. I am very happy that my food desires are in a pattern that are very healthy, and I can happily live with. And including my holiday in Ireland, the nights I hit it hard I can count on one hand. 5 nights out of 21 is not terrible, not great, but no where near the old me. But, and here is the big but, I have been flirting with the old lifestyle - propping it up with good eating most days, and rigorous work-outs, but I am not so sure that this is a safe speed I should be driving.

Tonight I am going to see a band, The Bogmen, with a buddy who has been waiting to drink with me since November 1, 2009. A test indeed! Tomorrow? I am going to watch the European Cup rugby final at an McCormack's Irish pub, with an Irish friend in the middle of the day. Another test!

Stay tuned, I expect to make some bold stances this weekend! God willing.


Naina said...

Sending positive thoughts your way.
I want you to succeed.

Terrence said...

thank you Naina!