Whether dieting or “Jesus-ing,” stick with the basics!

Welp, yet another small but HISTORICALLY significant gain this week — but some theological AND diet wisdom to go along with it! First, the annoying news:

190.4
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Yep, that’s right, as of today’s weigh-in, I’m no longer 50 pounds down!! Thus, I’ll either have to rename the blog (“50 by 61?” “50 by 62?”) OR get back to basics and recalibrate that diet!

cat mouse remember diet'

And in a weird weigh way, it kinda ties in with some theological stuff I’ve been dealing with. See, as you longtime regular readers (all 3 of you!) know, I’m a Byzantine Catholic.

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However, every so often, like most sensible people, I have my doubts about the whole “religulous” thing. That’s because, also like a lot of otherwise sensible people, I have a tendency to let my religion get tied up with my politics, and wind up worshipping something more like the all-too-human leaders of my party of choice (whichever it is at the time) than any transcendent deity that may or may not exist!

And no matter which version of Jesus you favor, Democrat, Republican, or “other,” you have to know, deep down inside, that if there even is any such Person at all, He’s probably not tied to any one particular political party or ideology that we humanoids have managed to cobble together for ourselves!

30 rock we count those

Anyway, the nice thing about going through a bout of atheism on a regular basis is that it’s kinda like cleaning out that junk drawer in the kitchen.

junk drawer.jpgYou know how it is — you throw everything out, clean the drawer, leave it empty for a while, till one fine day you need to store a new kitchen thingy (“Hey, why not in that nice, clean, empty drawer?”) and then another thingy, and another,  till before you know it, everything’s back to normal! Except now, at least you’ve got NEW junk in there, instead of all the old junk, and for a while, anyway, maybe you’ll actually remember what’s in there, and occasionally even find something useful there!

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(And trust me, I’m getting to the dieting stuff! Be patient!)

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ANYHOO, so from time to time I throw out all the theological crap I’ve been storing in my internal junk drawer, aka “brain,” and then a few weeks/months/years later, I find myself with a brand new religious idea that makes sense! So I store it in my nice, clean, empty brain, then add another,  and another, till pretty soon everything’s back to normal, till the next spring cleaning time rolls around.

But the mistake a lot of theologically inclined people make when they’re losing their faith is to try and “Jesus” harder, a term I first came across in Rolltodisbelieve, a “nonreligious” Patheos blog by the very amusing and perceptive Captain Cassidy, aka Cassidy McGillicuddy. (And before my religulous friends get uptight, yes I’m still religious, but you know what? When you’re lost in the forest, sometimes it’s helpful to consult someone who’s outside it, and thus has a better view of the overall map!)

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Anyway, in a recent post, Captain Cassidy writes about how Christians rarely think about how they will cope if they find themselves starting to lose their faith:

If the doubters don’t want to do a bunch of busywork or they don’t respond in something other than the expected manner, then Christians fall back on accusing the doubters of Jesus-ing incorrectly. …
If doubters fail to resolve the doubt in question, then obviously the doubters allowed the scripts to fail.

Again, I don’t necessarily agree with all of the Captain’s *conclusions* in that post, but I sure do love the fact that she really pinpoints the problem(s) in ways that my fellow religulous friends are sometimes afraid to! And that brings me — AT LONG LAST!! — to the connection with the diet!

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When a longtime dieter who’s lost a whole bunch of weight starts regaining — “Why is this happening? I’m doing all the same stuff I was doing before! I’m eating all the same stuff!” — and they go online, what happens? Do they get sympathy (“Oh yeah, I’ve been there! Don’t worry, just take some deep breaths, get on with your life, take it one day at a time, it’ll all work out!“)? Well, maybe sometimes, but more often, they get stuff like:

“You’re dieting wrong! You should be [fill in fad diet of the month here] instead! What are your macros? Check your macros! Keto! Vegan! Calories don’t count!”

So here’s the connection! (OPINION ALERT!) Just like there’s all sorts of religions out there — all sorts of ways to find God and/or be spiritual or whatever — the ultimate goal of the best of them seems to boil down to having, and expressing, compassion and empathy for everyone.

jesus tattoos stupid questions

Now, some religions do that better than others, but you have to admit that’s at least the ideal, right? Well, the ultimate goal of every DIET is, of course, to lose weight! And some of them do that better than others — but they all do it by producing the same result: the all-important CALORIE DEFICIT!

calories points

As another blogger I admire, Jay at aworkoutroutine, points out, the best diet is the one that achieves that:

Whatever diet plan best suits your personal goals, needs and preferences and is therefore going to allow you to put the required fundamental principles of weight loss into action in the most Preferable, Enjoyable, Convenient and Sustainable (PECS!) way possible… THAT is the diet that’s best for you.

And that ties in with my personal opinion about “which is the best religion?”

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OPINION ALERT: The best religion is the one that makes you less likely to deliberately run over someone on your way to/from work — and the best diet is the one that results in a calorie deficit!!

Yes! It took a while but we finally got there!

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So there you go, your deep, heavy theological and dieting wisdom for the day! And yeah, I know this was a super-long post, but then again, I’m super-late posting it, so deal with it! See you next week!

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Another week fighting the fat (and patriarchy)!

Good morning, and happy Tuesday, everyone! First of all, I wanted to express my sympathies to all the victims of gun violence over the past few days. It’s heart-wrenching and happens all too often. Let’s see if we can do anything useful about it *this* time, ok?

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Anyway, my weight remains steady:

186.0
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in spite of (or perhaps because of) a week spent arguing against patriarchy within my beloved Byzantine Catholic church. Specifically, one of *our* priests (gasp!) posting propaganda videos for something called “The New Emangelization Project.” (Go ahead … read it! I’ll wait)

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I know, right? Anyway, it’s not like the whole idea of “men do this, women do that” isn’t already pretty much baked into Church teaching … I get that. However, this particular group was apparently founded specifically by the very manly Cardinal Raymond Burke:

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to push the idea that all the problems in the Church today — especially the child abuse scandals — are happening because of (brace yourself) WOMEN!

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Yeah, that’s right! If all those pushy women hadn’t been pushing their way forward from the back of the bus, er, church, and demanding the right to stand somewhere in the vicinity of the altar so they, too, could wear long dresses and lace in front of God, then the good Christian men wearing all those long dresses and lace wouldn’t have abused all those little kids!

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Also, he wants women to stop wearing clothes he doesn’t approve of, because it makes him nervous.

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Anyway, that’s what I’m on about now. And yeah, I realize fighting patriarchy within the Catholic Church is an unwinnable fight. But hey, I figure I’ve got at least as much of a chance of winning that one as Americans have of ending violent mass shootings within our lifetimes. So it’s worth a shot! (get it?)

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And yeah, I’m following through on my suggestion a few weeks ago that this blog might indeed transition into something a bit more political! Let me know what you think! Meanwhile, have a good, safe, and PEACEFUL week, my sisters and my brothers!

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Procrastination never works, amiright?

Hi everyone! Mr. 50by60 and I had a nice weekend, participating in a celebration of the 50th anniversary of Annunciation Byzantine Catholic Church in Anaheim, California. And of course, when church-y people celebrate anything, there’s inevitably FOOD involved.

So, I held off an extra day for the weigh-in because I thought that would give my weight a chance to settle back down a bit, after not one but TWO days’ worth of food.

Yeah, I don’t think it made all that much difference! So …

here’s the weigh-in:

186.0

Oh well — the GOOD news is that even though our own beloved pastor is retiring this weekend, he’s made it abundantly clear that he does NOT want or expect a potluck! And of course, being good, obedient Catholics, we always do what our priest tells us, so there shouldn’t be any more fattening food to deal with this weekend.

And just a reminder, I’ve decided to shift the weigh-in from Mondays to Tuesdays for a while, to see if that makes any difference. Obviously, it didn’t THIS week, so as usual, everything’s subject to change — including yours truly, nyuk nyuk!

Oh well — see ya next TUESDAY and we’ll see how things go!

Holy Week Without A Weigh-In, Batman!!

Good morning, everyone! Although technically, it’s “good evening,” since I’m actually writing this on Sunday evening, and just *scheduling* it for tomorrow morning. So whenever I say “today,” I mean “Monday,” which is really “tomorrow” for me “today.” So good morning (evening)!

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Anyway, just wanted to let you know there’s no weigh-in today tomorrow! Monday! because it’s the start of Holy Week. As I may or may not have mentioned, both Mr. 50by60 and I are cantors at our Byzantine Catholic church

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and this is a busy busy busy week for us, starting this morning with a long service called “Bridegroom Matins,” after which there are MORE services every day, till we get to the weekend and the services are so long that they spill over into the next century, or so it seems.

bridegroom matins

Anyway, bottom line is, no weigh-in today (Monday!), and no posts besides this till after next week (aka “Bright Week”). Hope you have a blessed Pascha/Easter; or Passover, which also starts this Friday; or, if you’re not religious, a “nice week”!

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Clean Monday: Last Weigh-In Before Pascha!

Good morning, everyone! A happy and blessed “Clean Monday” to my Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox, and Eastern Catholic (aka “Orthodox Lite”) friends out there!

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And rather than repeat myself ad nauseum, I’ll just refer you to LAST year’s Clean Monday blog post and let you go on about your day.

Meanwhile, without further adieux, here’s the weigh-in:

180.2
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oh poo

Aw shucks … back in the ’80s! But hey — Lenten fasting is upon us! So obviously that’s a great opportunity to lose some weight … right?

…this is the fundamental basis of Lenten promises. Whatever we give up, we have to ensure that God is kept at the centre of our resolve, and that the primary purpose is to draw near to Him. I will decrease my indulgences or bad habits so that God can increase in glory. NOT: I will decrease my chocolate intake so that I can increase my confidence on the beach, popularity at school or likeness to the celebs.

Oh, OK — and well said! So on that note, whether your Lent starts today, or Wednesday, hope it’s spiritually profitable for you – and not “just another diet”!

Post-Road Trip, Pre-Lent Weigh-In

Good morning, everyone!

Meatfare Groundhog

Yes, that’s right — as I’ve occasionally mentioned in this blog before, I’m an Eastern Catholic (Byzantine, Ruthenian, Greek Catholic, or whatever). We’re simple folk with different ways, but we’re cool.

easternstress

Anyway, the main thing to know about us as it relates to this blog is that even though we’re Catholic, we follow the same basic traditions as the Eastern Orthodox. And yesterday was what we call “Meatfare,” or “Farewell, Meat!” (You militant vegans out there should appreciate that since it’s the total, polar opposite of “Meet your Meat.”)

meet meat

The idea is that instead of melodramatically going from feast (Mardi Gras) to famine (Ash Wednesday), we kinda slide into the whole fasting thing gently. This week, we give up meat. Next week, after Cheesefare Sunday, we give up … well … everything else, basically!

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That’s right — our Lent officially starts two days BEFORE your Ash Wednesday!

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Anyway, you can read more about the whole Meatfare/Cheesefare Sundays thing here, if you’re so inclined. Meanwhile, I suppose I should get on with the whole weigh-in thing.

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Oh … wait … did I mention I was on a road trip last week? So that might have affected my weight? I mean, I did put the words “Post-Road Trip” in the post title and all, so I probably should at least mention it, right?

get on with it

Oh, all right!! Today’s weigh-in is, like people who don’t spout their political opinions to everyone they meet, whether they want to hear them or not (*cough* EVERY DAMN PERSON AT THE OSCARS *cough*), surprisingly neutral!

180.0
vo de o

That’s right — it’s EXACTLY the same as it was Monday, before I hit the road for beautiful, sunny Phoenix, Arizona!

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And I did indulge in some non-diet-type foods at the hotel’s fabulous Continental Breakfast Bar.

So I’m actually pretty impressed that I managed to keep the numbers from wildly skyrocketing. I did do some walking (in between the torrential storms) so that probably helped.

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Anyway, that’s it! And I’m going out on a limb AND going on record (hmm, can’t seem to find a meme that combines those two images! how bizarre) to renew my pledge, before God and everybody, to start counting my calories again. To be completely honest, I’d slacked off a bit on actually writing everything down, and keeping a running total in my head. Now that may work for you super math geniuses, but y’know, I’m not one of those.

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So it’s back to pen(cil) and paper for me! Let’s see how that works out. Meanwhile, have a GREAT first week of pre-Lent, everyone! See you Friday for a brand-new Five!

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