SB2: Another story

So. My story.

I consider myself an active bloke (mid-fifties) and have pretty much always done some form of reasonably vigorous physical exercise – for instance I played indoor netball for about 12 years, socially at first and then more competitively, including several stints at the nationals.

Then I gave up exercise for a few years – in 2004 I had a heart attack (age 44) and ended up in hospital recovering from a triple bypass. The three arteries on the front of my heart were blocked 100%, 90% and 100% respectively. Apparently my indoor netball had put off the inevitable by forcing my body to build additional blood supply around my heart. However my thanks go to my cardiac team at Auckland Hospital – I wouldn’t be here without them!

The scary thing was I had none of the usual markers: I’m a non-smoker, cholesterol was OK, no family history of heart disease and only slightly (I thought) overweight. However, they kept me in hospital until I was down to 95kg…

When I came out of hospital I joined the local YMCA – but quickly got bored with that.

So I started cycling, first on a mountain bike (on the road) and then more seriously on a road bike. For about 5 years I was riding an average of around 8000-9000km per year – including organised rides like Taupo (160km) and Around the Bay in a Day (Melbourne, 210km. Did this in two different years!). This latter ride was an amazing experience, especially the first time – when I got to the 160km point, I realised that this was the furthest I had ever ridden on one ride – the last 50km passed in a blur! My bum was pretty sore for a while though, after 7 hours in the saddle!!

The cycling enabled me to meet some great people (mostly on bikes!) and also enabled a lack of real oversight of what I was eating and drinking (because on Sunday I would burn it all off on a 100km ride…) :)

I had a serious ‘accident’ on my bike a few years ago which knocked my confidence pretty severely, so much so that I haven’t really ridden at all in the last 2-3 years. (It was a hit and run – he did a u-turn in front of me. Although the police caught him, he got the wet bus ticket treatment from the courts)

However, I did take up golf (again) which is my main form of exercise now.

I enjoy good food, wine and beer (of the craft kind), but it appears that the golf isn’t quite as conducive to weight maintenance as cycling, since it’s not so aerobic, despite the mountains I walk up and down on course.

I’m looking forward to this challenge and chance for mutual encouragement and hope to lose 15kg so I can fit some of the shirts and pants in my wardrobe again. My dad, now in his 80’s, has type 2 diabetes (brought on by too much good-living), so this is an added incentive for me to lose some weight….

Best of luck to all Blubbergeddon2 participants.

John (johcar)

Welcome to BG2 John.  Once again, an account of another otherwise intelligent person that somehow struggles to find balance, but mostly, because we’re all in need of making decisions that are going to add years to our lives.

We can no longer abuse our bodies and expect them to put up with it.  At some point, they’ll say ‘enough’.  Good news is that it’s never too late, and even if you’re in your fifties now, you can add quality and length to your life.

People who wish to join the BG2 Crew, drop me an email, and I’ll add you to the document.


Personally I had a plateau day.   Against advice, I weigh myself daily.  I’m big enough to take the hit if there is a stagnant or backwards day.


There are many, many web sites, apps and other means of tracking your own weight.  I’m using the one at

Somewhat confusingly named, the Fast Diet is a diet where you throw in an occasional fasting day while you keep your other days just normal.  It isn’t a diet that makes you lose weight fast, as the name seems to imply to most.

Known as the 5:2 diet, it has been accidentally discovered while looking for ways to make people healthier by researching why occasional fasting was having health benefits.

The weight loss was just a good side effect.   I’ll go into this in more detail in future, but what attracts me to it is that out of a week, you can have 5 normal eating days.  Seriously.  Eat anything you like.  On two days you still eat, but very little – your “fasting” days.    It has huge benefits, as I said, and weight loss is only a side-effect.


THANK YOU for being a subscriber. Because of you Whaleoil is going from strength to strength. It is a little known fact that Whaleoil subscribers are better in bed, good looking and highly intelligent. Sometimes all at once! Please Click Here Now to subscribe to an ad-free Whaleoil.

  • newbarnkiwi

    hi, would it be ok to join you guys once the kids are back at school, early feb?

    • EveryWhichWayButLeft

      Chuck your name on the list now nbk… You might not be ready, but I can speak from my own experience in saying I’m finding that having my status tracked semi-publicly, shall we say, very motivating.

      It’s a challenge with the kids – mine get pizza tonight and I get meat and salad, but it’s worth it in the end. The best result is if you can modify your lifestyle while the kids are there and maintain it going forward.

      • mommadog

        LOL at the very motivating part of having your stats tracked semi-publically – that’s probably the key that will work for me. Having emailed Pete and joining in I am now publically accountable for everything I put in my mouth. Before I could always make an excuse and say well tomorrow…

        • Yep, that’s part of it. And that’s also why I started Blubbergeddon again – by being its facilitator I am now stuck having to see it through! :D

        • Wallace Westland

          Tell me about it. Opened my trap and jumped right in. On the upside I got the exercyle together last night and did two 15min stints. I’m not sure which was better exercise though, riding it or putting the blinking thing together!
          And being the leader of the fat pack is not making me happy at all….lol…well I’m not miserable…it’s not like I didn’t know I’m a …… hahahaha

          • Look into high intensity interval training to get your general fitness up first. (if needed)

          • Wallace Westland

            Thanks. Just had a look to see what that is and it’s sort of what I had in mind.
            I’ll add some science to it based on what I’m reading and see how it goes.
            Baby steps for me. If I get to carried away I’ll kill myself and there is no one that would know till I don’t turn up for work for a week! pheeeeeeeew :)

          • Mrs_R

            On a serious note Wallace, I agree small steps and often is the best way to kick off. If you feel light headed, chest pain or a racing heart rate – stop. Rome was not built in a day :)

          • Wallace Westland

            Neither was this gut….but it’s as impressive as a colosseum :-) hehehe
            I’ll take it easy Mrs R, so far I’m having fun.

        • newbarnkiwi

          Thanks EWWBL & MD, I’ll get my name down ASAP… For the next couple of weeks I’ll tread water by being more conscious of what I’m eating but not go the whole hog as don’t want to go through that tetchy first week until the kids have shot through. My youngest will be leaving for boarding school so taking better care of myself should help with empty nest syndrome. We’re also getting our house ready for going on the market and are making plans for moving to another part of the country so can’t mentally face another challenge just yet. At 44 I’ll be returning to work after 17yrs at home so will be up against all the young things who are also looking for work. Losing the heft I’ve put on over the years should help place me better when attending job interviews. Have 50+kgs to shed so will take a while, but will be good to be doing it with fellow wayfarers!

    • la la land

      I am doing the Paleo way system which is basically cutting out processed carbs and sugar… And I am going to try and get the family eating basically the same with a little more leniency around bread… They will grizzle at the start but I have one child with a HUGE sugar addiction that I want to see eating healthier too

  • R&BAvenger

    Am following the 5:2 diet myself for the past 12 months (almost) Once you are past the first few weeks of adjustment you’ll be able to see the changes. My advice is choose your 2 fasting days and stick to them. Mine are Tuesdays and Thursdays. Not weighing yourself every day is good advice.

    • friardo

      Can I suggest that instead of regular fasting days that you try the complete opposite, skip meals if you are busy or interested in what you are doing at any mealtime. Your immune system needs to be kept alert by a continuous stream of irregularity, not just in your feeding either, but with exercise, intellectually, sunlight and so on including type and duration.

      This is really only possible for the self employed I guess, but our ancestors certainly hunted when they could, ran when they had to, fought to stay alive, all without clocks. And we’re still much the same animal as them.

  • Time For Accountability

    Dropped 20kg from over 100 to 80-81 in four months really easily.

    Just stopped:
    All additional sugar such as coffee etc which makes food a lot better tasting.
    All bread at home, unless i go out. THis was the big one because allong with that is the between meal slice with all the toppings.
    Lollies and that type of stuff.

    Walk often, after a while if it is not over 5k with uphill bits you get bored. No need to cycle, jog or gym.
    Lots of Speights – Breakfast, during the day and evening. (From Speights water tap)
    Lots of healthy salads for lunch, no not the leafy type rather bulky types such as roast veggies etc.

    In other words just minor tweaks here and there but lots of discipline.
    One of the big benefits is – take the wife with you for walks and she will improve her weight and fitness too.

    Oh and get a stent beforehand to enable the exercise.

    Only downside is it costs a fortune to restock the wardrobe.

    • 80 is apparently the highest ideal weight for my height. I can seriously not imagine myself there. I have no idea what that looks like on me.

      • Wallace Westland

        My ex (when I got married to her) made me go Doc as I hadn’t seen one in 15 years. I wasn’t porky then I was fit as although not in the gym way, in the working way.
        Doc tells me I have too much fat on gut and my BP will be through the roof and my ideal weight was 87kg. (It was 95..which is my goal weight now)
        I told the guy he was an idiot (I’m a bit funny like that) and that I bet my BP was perfect. He took it and it was..I then told him that the last time I’d been 87kg I was 15 years old and was in the 1st 15.
        Paid the bill resentfully, walked out and never went back.

        • When it comes to doctors, I tend to act like a consumer. If I don’t like the one I’ve got, I change to one that is part of a team instead of someone that doesn’t listen and just preaches health doctrine.

          I’ve had some good ones over the years, and I’ve got a good one now, but one of them had to go under the bus very quickly as she caused me so much anxiety, it wasn’t worth the money!

          • Wallace Westland

            Well…that was about 13 years ago I think, if I ever need one I’ll look around I guess but for now I’m happy to avoid them.

          • You can feel fine and still not be fine. Blood tests are useful. But yeah… easy saying that. To each their own.

  • wooted

    Thanks for that link, Pete. I’m not doing that diet but the tracker is really handy.

  • Wallace Westland

    Good stuff John, mid fifties is way to early to time out. Wish you well.

  • KiwiM8

    I’ve been doing the 5:2 diet for a couple of weeks … lost about 3-4 kgs. The best part of this is the psychological feeling on those ‘fasting’ days that ‘tomorrow’ I can have that whatever it is that I’m dying to have. … somehow that makes it so much easier to not have. I’ve also found that because I’ve eaten so little on the 2 days my stomach has shrunk, and I also am finding that I’m actually not craving those sweets and chocs and biscuits. And I’m not doing any calorie counting. On the 5 days, I eat anything and everything I feel like. I love it!