A couple of months prior to my surgery in 2007, I started getting up at 4:30 am to exercise and mentally prepare for the surgery. Once I resolved that surgery was my only resort, I was on a mission to get as healthy as I could.
I’m now 49 — 48 at the time of surgery, and I was not in the best of shape. I have never been more than 10 or so lb. overweight, but I wanted the weight off and for my cardiac function to be as good as possible.
I’ve heard that it takes a long time to get used to something outside your routine, and I’ve found that to be true, but when properly motivated, it can take much less time. Say for instance, your doctor tells you that if you don’t change your diet you’re going to die.
I had a friend, who worked out regularly at the gym, was a marathon runner, but ate most of his meals at fast food restaurants. His favorite was a McDonalds hamburger with fries and a soft drink. He started having dizzy spells at work and so decided to go to the doctor to be checked out.
When I next saw him, he asked me what I thought the doctor had said to him. My response was, if you don’t change your diet, you’re going to die. He smiled and said, yep, that’s basically what he said. He started eating at Blimpie instead. A good improvement. They have great salads and turkey subs. His health improved, and the effect was almost immediate.
I’ve lived by a rule of thumb I read about years ago in the book, Fit for Life. Eat a diet with foods that have high water content. That is, watery vegetables and fruits. If you put it in a juicer, and lots of juice comes out, it is good. Examples include carrots, cabbage, tomatoes, lettuce, beets, most fruits. If you put beef, chicken, bread, nuts, in a juicer, no juice come out! So you want to eat less of the non-juicy stuff and more of the juicy stuff. Why do you think the term "juicy" in non-food context usually means something is appealing? Juicy usually means, it’s good!
Juicy — GooooD! Not-juicy — NOT SO MUCH!
Rule of thumb, try to eat 70% juicy food. Try it and let me know how your health improves.