Monday, November 8, 2010

Weekly Posting

Good morning and thanks for reading my first weekly comments for My Vegan Quest.

Runners up First Ave.

It was an eventful weekend to be sure - Friday my friends and the Tennis Star's friends meeting each other. Saturday my brother and Sister-in-Law welcomed their first child into the world. And Marathon Sunday.

Part of this developing relationship took a very important turn - I am now discussing switching from my gym to hers so we could work out together! I think this will be a positive development since I am no longer chasing fun, and spending the evening with her in the gym instead of the boys at the pub is simply healthier.

Friday night was too much celebrating, and as a result I ordered eggs and corned beef hash Saturday morning. After two bites I was reminded how much I would rather be eating a bowl of fruit and a bowl of oatmeal.

I also realized that my years of bachelorhood plus my efforts in changing my eating and drinking habits put me in a position of selfishness that I had not realized until becoming a part of a "team." I like how I am now striving to be better in all areas of my life.

Watching the marathon I was, as I am every year, so inspired by watching 40,000 people run up First Avenue around mile 18 of the marathon. It truly is all shapes, sizes, and ages which is amazing. Watching some middle-aged guy with a beer belly trudging along is motivating - but then 20 minutes later watching some young man with a seemingly perfect and well sculpted body struggle by is confusing. Why did a guy who looks no different than your neighborhood UPS delivery man seem to navigate the marathon, while someone who looks like he should be one of the leaders walking far behind the every-man? I think because you just can't judge a book by its cover.  Also, it was fun to watch the Chilean miner run by! Not to mention my first day of veganhood was Marathon Sunday one year ago -- I thought about that day, and how far I have come, and I was just so happy to have experienced it all.

I want to end with an observation about the state's effort to curb childhood obesity. Although it is a noble and much needed effort, they are clearly going about it the wrong way. From California to New York politicians are acting like a nanny instead of a coach. They are taking away the personal responsibility of the citizens and trying to legislate through punishing private corporations.

I have said this before: for a child to be raised almost exclusively on a diet of fast food and soda really does amount to child abuse. However, instead of intensive education, incentives, and opportunities to create a healthy generation of kids, the government has chosen to tax soda companies (but not, say, candy companies), and even make "Happy Meals" - kids meals from McDonald's that have toys with their hamburgers, illegal. This over legislation turns private companies into the forces of evil, and gives lazy parents a free pass. Although Coke and McDonald's does not produce healthy food, they have a right to do so, and give many millions to charities in support of healthy living. A diet of coke and big macs is a terrifically unhealthy choice, but are there people who are unaware of that?
Now, during the Olympics I thought it was pretty outrageous that McDonald's had a commercial that showed taking a young hockey team to McDonald's with the tag line, "eat like a champion." Now, I am all for taking the team for pizza or burgers, but with the expressed knowledge that this is not a food kids should live on. However, these kids should be just as active as my generation so that those pizza parties are meaningless in causing obesity.

If the state wants to combat childhood obesity make sure that every public school makes Physical Education mandatory, and every athletic team is fully funded. As it stands, there are plenty of billions of dollars nationwide for education, it is just that the money is so seriously misspent that some schools had to eliminate sports. The recent scandals in the NYC public school system shows the serious mishandling of funds, so fully funded sports programs can be accomplished in this current economy with these current budgets.

Secondly, since the Federal Gov't is pretty good at special subsidies for farmers of certain kids of crops, simply make subsidies available for farmers who grow fruits and vegetables - not just corn which is a leading factor in corn syrup in everything.

Common sense should rule the day always, that is what I am saying.


Anonymous said...

Here, here.
It is a constant battle to try and feed my 5 year old healthy foods, and I have to say no A LOT. But that is my job, and so I continue to do it. I know that I am getting through a little bit though, because today when his friend picked Gatorade at the store, my son said, "That's not healthy." Baby steps.

Vegan Epicurean said...

Sounds like things are progressing nicely in your life. I love the part about switching gyms to work out together. That really made me smile. I am very happy that things are going so well for you. :-)


Terrence said...

Thanks so much Ali! Thanks for making this blog interesting for so many months!