Gut improvement and Weight Loss

This account isn’t filled with drama or suspense.

I had basically given up weighing myself in June, being disgusted with having hit 218 pounds and struggling with injuries regularly. I went so far as to toss out my skinny jeans.

Around the end of the second month of being sober, I noticed a few things. I felt my waist was getting smaller. I was very cynical thinking it was an illusion of some sort.

So, I caved and weighed myself. To a pleasant surprise. I’d lost fifteen pounds. It had snuck up on me. An incredibly pleasant surprise.

Which made absolute sense. I was no more or less active than June with regular drinking. But the math of caloric intake is absolute and without question. Twelve to eighteen drinks a week at an average of 200 calories a piece amounts to 2400 to 3600 more useless calories a week. That didn’t account for those weeks where I might have exceeded that amount. Nor did it account for the impact to the rest of my body, like dehydration, motivation and general fatigue.

That the weight had been shed without effort, was amazing. From mid 2015 to April of 2016 I had been counting calories, trudging through miles, busting out pushups, pullups, and busting a grind whenever I wasn’t injured for whatever stupid ailment. I’d tracked all my calories in, calories burnt, sleep, and supplements religiously. I’d tried a variety of workouts from the Murph to the Spartacus to a variety of others on top of running.

All of that was in a good direction, but was completely stymied by my habits with alcohol.

The one thing I had not done, was quit drinking for any significant amount of time. And the results were paying off.

I also realized that it had been weeks since I had suffered from diarrhea. Unpleasant as it is to discuss, it had become part of my existence with drinking. After a night of average Friday night style drinking it was even chances that the next morning would be spent hidden on the throne suffering through cramps and discomfort.

I had family members that persisted in saying it was a gluten issue. I saw a more direct correlation between alcohol and the gut challenges. And had combatted those effects almost weekly with probiotics and anti-diarrhea meds.
I compared the experiences to the painful side effects of being on antibiotics which destroy your healthy gut flora along with the unhealthy infections. And that too makes absolute sense. Alcohol, albeit covered in tasty sensations in our drinks, are a clear antibacterial agent. I grew up pouring alcohol on skinned knees and cuts to disinfect them. The constant swimming pool of alcohol passing through my system was destroying the things that would promote good digestion and opened the door to diarrhea. And yet, I had developed coping methods to continue with recovering from drinking and diarrhea to allow me to continue drinking.  

If I had to go out of my way to adapt to drinking and overcome it’s harmful effects, then clearly I had been doing something wrong. Now it was time to change.  

Author: 21Buzzards

Mid-life retired reservist in the corporate IT world parenting a grandchild. Sharing my evolution as age and priorities impact life.

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