The Latest Plan

The continuing saga, following up on An Olive Oil Diet: A Diary. My latest latest diet/exercise plan, as of March, 2001.

Originally published 2000

New Diet

Ok, the “pure” olive oil diet didn’t quite pan out. But olive oil is definitely part of the solution. The trick is to get more fiber! Not to mention exercise. But oil+fiber should definitely be the key.

The Diet Plan

Oil & Vinegar
I go to the health food store and get the best oils and vinegars I can find. Unrefined, unprocessed, unfiltered — the real thing. Then I keep a bottle with an oil and vinegar mixture (about 9:1 or 8:2 oil to vinegar ratio). Depending on mood, I add a mixture of dried basil, pepper, garlic, or any other spice that seems promising.
High-Fiber Breakfast
I found a 5-minute oatmeal/barely mixture that contains enough sugar to be sweet, along with some fruit. I’ve never liked oatmeal much, but this I can stand. Hopefully, it’ll help me develop a taste for it. To that, and this is important, add a tablespoon of the oil & vinegar. That way, the oil is buffered by the fiber, and the carbohydrates aren’t in the form of bread! I finish that off with a banana or some other piece of fruit, and I’m pretty well satisified.
Good Lunch
The key here may be to go to good restaurants, but avoid the entrees. Soup, salad, a good shrimp coctail, or what have you. That plan should make it possible to eat quick, like in a fast food restaurant, but still escape without a big bill or a ruinous meal. I tried that yesterday, but the salmon covered in shrimp at Marie Callendar’s looked too good to pass up. It was great, and even though the vegetable content of my lunch wasn’t as high as it should be, the great fish made up for it. Anyway, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
Soup & Salad
Thank goodness for those pre-packaged salads! Dinner can now consist of a bowl of soup (with a tablespoon of oil & vinegar), a salad (oil and vinegar dressing, of course) and as much fruit as I want for dessert.
Lots More Fruit
I’m committing to keeping a lot more fruit on hand — and eating it, instead of my usual habit of having a few pieces and watching the rest of it go to waste. The key here is making sure that no cookies or candies make their way home! Then, to satisfy my evening sweet tooth, I’m forced to dine on fruit! It’s hard. Somehow that fruit doesn’t quite cut it. But if I keep enough berries and sweet oranges on hand, maybe my taste buds will adjust. Sure hope so.
…and Walking
The thing about fruit is that it’s perishable. So you have to go to the store a lot. Well, good news. Apparently you need to make sure you get about 45 minutes of some kind of activity every day. Walking to the store, shopping, and shlepping the stuff back takes just at 45 minutes. So I’m committed to walking to the store, not driving.

The Exercise Plan

When I do irish dancing these days, I sweat buckets — a sure sign that I’m carrying way too much insulation. The musculature is there, so I can really dance well. But the extra pounds make it harder. They also add stress to the knee and make the sweat literally pour off me. So I finally got motivated to get back to some endurance activities, as well as the strength-training activities.

Once a week is about all my knee will stand, but if that’s what I can do, fine. I had to start with alternate walking and running (50 steps walking, 50, 100, or 200 steps running). But I got out there! That’s the important thing. And I found that squeezing my glutes as I step helps to protect my knee. (Cartilege was surgically removed from the inside of the right knee. Squeezing the glute on that side seems to put my weight over the outside edge, where cartilege still exists, which keeps the knee from making bone-to-bone contact on the inside edge.)
Finally got back to swimming, too. Twice a week, I figure, will be enough to do the job, combined with a weekly run, irish dancing workouts, and more daily walking.
Strength Training
The “hard core” program appears to be working well. It consists of one major-muscle group, plus abdominal work, 4 times during the week. It only takes a few minutes, and appears to be doing a great job of toning and shaping. (The one problem I still haven’t solved is how to work in the minor muscle groups.)
I’m not doing a lot. Certainly not Yoga, like I really should be doing. But 5 or 10 minutes of stretching 3 times a week does seem to be helping. It’s a lot better than the nothing I was doing, any way.


Here’s an outline of my current schedule:

AMChest + AbsStretch<minor?>Legs + AbsStretchStretch
eveSwimUp Back + AbsIrish DanceSwimLo Back + Abs

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