With the new year comes new diet; the Mountaineers keep climbing

Published 12:00 am Thursday, December 20, 2018

It’s that time of year. Well, almost…
No, we’re not talking Christmas here.
We’re on the verge of a new year, and that means resolution time for someone who doesn’t routinely make resolutions.
It’s time, so why not join the crowd and try to drop a few pounds when the calendar flips to 2019.
Actually, this is a joint effort between me and my wife, and there’s strength in numbers, right? We can hold each other accountable — or at least try to.
I’ll have to count on this in early January when I’m craving some fried chicken — or maybe some country-style steak — along with rice and gravy, and a slice of chocolate cream pie.
Then there’s going to a movie with our bucket to get filled with buttered popcorn — and layering it, please. Most people choose a specific movie. We go for the popcorn and hope the movie is OK.
Or the breakfast buffet. That’s about the closest thing to Heaven there is out there.
And sweet tea. How can I give it up?
Plus, the drive-thru at Krispy Kreme. The list goes on and on.
No doubt, it’s going to be a challenge, but it must be done. Now it’s a matter of figuring out what kind of diet, if you want to call it that, and the best way to lose some weight and all the health benefits that go along with it.
I guess the diet I’ve heard the most about over the years is the Atkins diet, where you can eat lots of protein. More bacon and eggs sounds wonderful, but this diet restricts carbohydrates — like bread, rice, potatoes, pasta, etc.
Ouch. Can’t do that. Plus, I’ve never thought it was healthy to totally cut out one particular food group and that there must be some sort of balance.
I started to sift through some other diets and was amazed at the number of choices. There’s something out there for everyone.
Luckily, I get plenty of exercise by playing racquetball and tennis, and my wife and I plan to start walking regularly.
But back to what kind of diet or food reduction…
I spoke to a doctor I know well and respect, and he offered a common sense approach of trying to eat more protein but don’t totally cut out the carbs — just do everything in moderation, reduce the portions on the plate and eliminate late-night snacks. Drink more water. And keep moving — including more exercise.
Nothing fancy. Just be consistent. This doesn’t need to be a sprint. A marathon is probably a better approach.
Cutting out the craves won’t be easy, and I’m still trying to figure out going to the movies without the buttered popcorn — and, of course, layering it.
Happy New Year!

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Besides Christmas, it’s the most wonderful time of the year with all the bowl games, including my alma mater, Appalachian State, rolling to its fourth straight bowl victory in as many tries since joining the FBS — college football’s top division — in 2014.
The Mountaineers won their third straight Sun Belt Conference championship and earned a spot in the New Orleans Bowl last Saturday where they crushed Middle Tennessee State, 45-13.
App State, which cracked the Top 25 for the first time in school history earlier this season, joined a select group by finishing with a record of 11-2. With 41 wins over the last four seasons, the program ranks sixth nationally behind only Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State, Oklahoma and Georgia — not bad company for sure.
About 10 days before the bowl game, word got out that head coach Scott Satterfield, the architect behind the recent success and former player and top assistant coach when App won three straight FCS (Division I-AA) championships from 2005 to 2007, was moving on to take over as head coach at Louisville.
The remaining coaches pulled everything together and the players shook off a slow start in the bowl game, executing a dazzling game plan (including two TD passes thrown by a wide receiver) to win going away. My only regret is not being able to make the trip.
In the meantime, Eliah Drinkwitz, a highly regarded offensive guru similar to the coach he is replacing, was hired away from N.C. State where he was offensive coordinator for record-setting Wolfpack teams the last three years.
He seems like a great hire to continue the pride and tradition of football championships in Boone.
Like Athletics Director Doug Gillin said at the introductory press conference on Monday: “We don’t expect this thing to go backward. We’re keeping this thing climbing.”

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And in closing, Merry Christmas to all!