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John talks about his week off and reworks his nutrition plan for the last 30 days.

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 Intro (0:00)

John: Welcome back to 100 Days. So as I mentioned in the last episode, I basically took a week away from this show. I spent some of my time with family and friends, but I also did a lot of work on a writing project. And during that time, some things went well, and some things went terribly. 

[100 Days Intro]

Exercise went really well. I managed to workout every single day, I went on quite a few runs including one for 4.5 miles even though it was really cold and there was snow on the ground.

J: It's cold!

John: [voice over] And that's indicative of how my relationship with exercise has totally changed since the beginning of this project. Like, I remember when I first started when I was jogging on my self directed exercise days, I would always listen to music and I would say to myself 'okay, you only have 5 more songs to go until you'll be done, you only have 4 more songs to go and then you'll be done, you only have 3 more songs to go,' but this week that internal dialogue changed to: 'you get to spend 5 more songs running.' Now exercise feel less like a chore to me and more like an opportunity, it's become a kind of consolation and I think that change in my life will be sustainable. 

By the way, during writing breaks I also learned how to play ping pong against myself, but I don't know if I'm gonna be continuing that. 

J: Point for me!

J: So I was in Michigan for a few days before you got there and I was working on, uh, the book that I'm trying to finish, and I... what?

C: You write books?

J: Mhm.

C: Mm.

J: And I had a great time and ate fairly well, um, and I did exercise each day. And I will say although we fell completely off the rails on the food side of things once you and the rest of our friends, uh, came to Michigan for a few days with all the kids, we did exercise every day. We went on a great run, and then we jumped into the freezing cold Lake Michigan! 

C: [voice over] I remember jumping in and my head being, like, so... I felt like my head was gonna break, it was so cold. 

J: [voice over] I jumped in and initially I was like 'this isn't so bad' but that lasted for about one to three seconds, and then I, I thought I might, this might be my last mistake.

C: [voice over] And trying to get out of the surf...

J: [voice over] So cold.

C: [voice over] It was hard. 

J: Oh my god! That was horrible.

John: But then there's food and I continue to have a problem with processed carbs: cookies, chips, granola bars, etc, and once I bend the rules I've been trying to follow, I tend to go completely off the rails and eat until I'm overly full. So, like, here you can see some food tracking I did on Day 62 and Day 63. And then you'll notice almost none between Day 64 and Day 67. Here's a few pictures from Day 68 including blurry ones of beer and some half eaten wings. And those last pictures best reflect how I was really eating and the frustrating thing is that I just don't feel like I'm control of these choices. I feel like something outside of me is deciding what I'm going to eat. Like, I literally cannot choose to eat better. I am not generally a weak-willed person, but I just cannot seem to eat the way that I want to, and the way that I know I need to if I want to be healthy. Honestly, it's really been infuriating, and it also helps me to understand why such a high percentage of people you try to make lasting changes in their diet fail to do so. 

J: For me, that night was the night where I was like: 'I've gotta get a handle on this because I'm just not, I'm not doing a good job.'

C: Ya know the idea of saying sustainable changes is there's still gonna be special occasions where we do that. Like, that was still an outlier to everything else.

J: Oh yeah, yeah.

C: So, what I'm saying is that you're still going to have those outliers.

J: We had an awesome time, I'm glad that we didn't photograph it, I'm especially glad that we didn't photograph the 5 hours of karaoke that closed out the evening, but we had a great time and sometimes you, I do think that like sometimes that's part of life. 

C: John does an incredible Leonard Cohen, uh, karaoke.

J: I would do it for you now, but we cannot clear those rights.

C: I'm sure we can't clear the Leonard Cohen rights.

J: No.

John: So when I got home I reached out to our dietitian Kim, and after talking things through with her, I want, in this last month of 100 Days, to really recommit myself to this last piece of the health puzzle. I came up with 5 rules I want to live by because in general I'm kind of a rules oriented person. Number 1: no processed carbs except occasionally bread. Number 2: no more than 3 meals out per week. Other than that it has to be food that Sarah and/or I made. Number 3: only healthy snacks with no added sugars. Number 4: no drinking alcohol at home because I feel like alcohol weakens my resolve when it comes to processed carbs. And number 5: food tracking everything, no matter what.

So these rules only exist because I believe they will work for me. Like dropping processed carbs or alcohol or added sugar from your diet may not be the right move for you, but they're the 5 guidelines I've formulated based on what I've learned about myself for the last 70 days. 

Another important thing I have to keep reminding myself of is that when I break these 5 rules I shouldn't act like all is lost, like, if I have a granola bar that doesn't mean I might as well have 8 granola bars. And lastly I'm gonna get rid of my cheat days or my non tracking days because they're just not working for me. I don't plan them in advance, and I'm not someone who moderates effectively, so I don't end up good choices.

Again, I'm just trying to figure out what's gonna work for me, I am done trying to figure out the best diet for humans in like the abstract sense. So that's my plan: keep exercising, keep meditating 10 minutes per day, and follow food guidelines that are specific to me and my challenges. 

We'll see how it goes. Thanks for watching, and I also want to say thank you for all of your support. I'll see you on Day 71.

[credits screen]

C: [singing] Oh Michigan, the feelings forever.

J: We can't clear those rights, although I'm not, I've never heard that song before. 

C: I think Michigan, it's the Michigan tourist song. The guy who does the voice over, the tool time from, uh, Home Improvement. 

J: Tim... Tim...

C & J: Tim...

J: God, he used to be the most famous man on earth.

C: I want to say Tim Robbins, it's not Tim Robbins.

J: Oh man, what's his name?

C: Huh?

C & J: Tim Allen!