Photograph by S. Hermann & F. Richter
Goals, Wishes And Dreams Of The Past And Of The Future.
Today is first of January 2017 and a whole new year is starting. It also happens to be on a Sunday which for a lot of people and me is perfect because a lot of us we don’t have to go to work.
Having a break from our everyday routine is a good thing because it will give you the time just to sit down and reevaluate what you have done the last year. Did you meet your goals you set? Did you set any goals at all last year? Do you think your life is controlled by you or you feel you are on automate pilot where others pull strings for you?
Questions like that always pop in my mind when significant time marks have being crossed, like anniversaries or birthdays and so on.
I am writing this article to tell you my story, yes a lot of you already know my story, and you might not want to hear it again. Heck, sometimes I get bored telling my story again! But to keep a particular lifestyle intact and not abandon it you need to maintain the light of your memory of past events alive, and I am doing that by having a blog and telling my stories.
It keeps me on the right path.
My path towards searching health and in the course of that acquiring a thirst for knowledge and information that will enable me to be healthier and happier started almost eight years ago when I decided that I had enough with me smoking tobacco cigarettes and I quit smoking.
I always knew that smoking was killing me from inside out, but unfortunately, I fell into the nicotine trap as Allen Carr mentions many, time in his brilliant book Only Way To Stop Smoking Permanently (Penguin Health Care & Fitness) by Carr, Allen (2000) Paperback
The society I grew up considered and still does in some big degree that smoking is not a deadly addiction but a “bad habit”!!!
Let me tell you what a bad habit is, a bad habit is picking your nose, or swearing, or biting your fingernails and a bad habit will not kill you like smoking does to millions of people every day on this beautiful planet.
That’s one of the myths I believed and rationalized when I was under the influence of nicotine, that it’s just a bad habit that I can kick out whenever I want, boy I was so full of it!
It took me 16 years to escape the nicotine trap, if you ask a smoker now why does he or she smokes the most typical answer you will receive, and it was one of my favorite replies as well when I was a smoker (Nicotine User) was because It tastes good!
Yes, you heart right tobacco smoking tastes good! I guess some people eat with their lungs!!! Instead with their tongue.
Tobacco doesn’t taste good if you eat a cigarette which is the only way to taste it tastes awful and disgusting.
Another reply was because I like smoking, hmm what exactly do you like when you smoke I wonder? What? Now eight years almost smoke-free (Nicotine Addict in recovery for life basically) I know that there is nothing to like about smoking cigarettes. Nothing. I could mention a plethora of what smoking does to your lungs, heart, and throat but a smokers mind, clouded by the addiction will not even listen or pay attention, a smoker (Nicotine Addict) will only see and hear what he or she wants to hear. Trying to talk to a smoker (in essence a drug addict), using logic is like trying to speak with a three-year-old who insists that popcorn is not pronounced like popcorn but prop corn! You will lose the argument because you as an adult with logic try to reason with a kid that doesn’t have the ability to reason because the child’s brain it’s not yet developed!
Similar things happen with a smoker (Nicotine Drug Addict) its brain may be developed to be able to reason and hear to logic but that ability was hijacked by the drug, nicotine is calling the shots now, and logic like Spock will say from the famous start trek series is not present anymore.
That’s why I completely disagree with those graphic pictures they put on the cigarette packs illustrating people dying from cancer or other gruesome images.
The purpose of this tactic is to warn smokers about the dangers of smoking. Let me tell you something, this kind of scary tactics do not work in a drugs addict mind, they don’t register, the drug has robbed them of the ability to reason and logic and worse they are in denial.
You see intelligent people, doctors! People with high IQ’s to smoke, that’s a strong indication that there is something else except a “bad habit.” Smart people and intelligent people are not intelligent and creative by doing a dump and stupid and illogical things like Spock will say again, I know I am at trekky what can I say I love that show.
But when you see brilliant people smoking, doing one of the stupidest things ever then that is when you realize that it’s not a “bad habit” but a severe drug addiction.
It doesn’t matter if the drug is legal, that doesn’t; make it any less deadly and any less idiotic behavior.
Smart people do stupid things when they are in denial when they are arguing with them self’s and rationalizing the wrong assumptions, so they will allow themselves to continue doing the stupid thing, which in this situation is tobacco smoking.
Deep inside them all smokers know that what they do is killing them but the association of tobacco use and going about with your life has created strong psychological ties and false emotional thinking that the smoker actually can’t live without smoking! That’s the nicotine trap, the real trap. Smokers convinced themselves that cannot live without smoking.
This insane and illogical thinking and of course unhealthy and deadly assumption from the smoker is what keeps most of them away from even thinking of attempting to quit!
The fact of the matter is that quitting smoking is so easy that now in the day we live in, 1 in 2 people is an ex-smoker, that’s 50% success rate. When someone decides to quit it has a fifty-fifty chance to be able to escape the nicotine prison and start living his life as he or she should have before lighting that first cig.
So many myths surround quitting smoking and especially cold turkey method which for me is the only method to use if you want to get rid of your addiction. That’s the method I used, and I fully advocate for and support.
Someone will say especially a smoker, Andreas all these are good and holy but how does a smoker take the decision to quit, well the answer to that question is easy actually.
People who smoke like I did will stop smoking if three things happen in their life’s. First, they wake up one day and say what on earth I am doing to myself, meaning smoking, and they just quit, they realized that they were a drug addict and that were killing them self’s and just quit. That shows that quitting smoking is mostly 99% mental and only 1% physiological.
The second reason someone might quit is when they get a serious touch of the flu, and they don’t; smoke for a few days. After they get better and haven’t smoked for let’s say six days, they keep going to see how long they will last without one and they just keep it for life.
Thirst reason and it was the reason that made me quit is when a doctor tells you, listen if you continue smoking you be dead in a year or something like that.
Fear, that’s what made me quit, my body reached a point where it started to break down, and in a significant percentage it was because of smoking, so I said to myself, that I want to live more than 50 years on this planet, so I stopped smoking!
Now you know what will trigger the will for a smoker to quit smoking.
So one of my goal every year is to continue to be smoke and tobacco free, and I am grateful and proud to say I managed to stay away from smoking for another year. For 2017 I will have the same goal!
After I quit smoking, I was still an ignorant fool about a lot of things so instead of stopping properly I, unfortunately, replace smoking with a crutch namely binge eating!
Because I did not know what to do with my hands and my mouth after I quit smoking I was eating and drinking high caloric processed food packed with so-called empty calories and at the same time, my job’s (I had three at the time) were all very sedentary. So the pounds and the kilos in just one year were slowly but steadily accumulating.
April of 2010 I managed to reach the amazing for my weight of 206 lbs (94kg)! And my height is 5.9” (1.74cm) tall. I was flirting with obesity.
The doctor after checking out my blood work said to me that the weight I accumulated and by the looks of it if I didn’t do something I will continue gaining weight I was going to be in danger of diabetes II and heart diseases. He told me you quit smoking to be healthy, and now you are in the same situation!
So again a doctor told me I was in trouble so I started running,, in high school, I was a runner I even got a few medals. I loved running when I was a kid and also in high school. I always felt alive and free when I was a runner.
So I started walking at first, for three months I will just go for a walk on the high school track and walk like a hamster round and round the track, always at night, not because I was ashamed or anything but because I will usually finish with my jobs night.
Then there was a transition period of walking and running; I think it was about a month if memory serves me right. Then I started running, and I never stopped running.
It’s six good solid running years, I lost some of the weight I managed to lower my weight to 167 pounds (76 kg) that are about 39 lbs! With just running, I would eat anything, meat, processed meat, sugary products anything.
For about a year I would be 167 pounds (76 kg) no matter how much running I would do, there were times I would run a half marathon every day but still no change in my waist line.
So I guess I am grateful that I am still running and did not stop after I lost a lot of my weight, in 2016 I managed to run some races which was fantastic if you note that I did not train as much as I wanted.
I managed to run a 12km dirt road race in the mountains, a half marathon in Bucharest, a Half Marathon in Paphos, a 10km in Paphos and the Cyprus 4 days challenge which was 4 different races on a different day!
I wish 2017 to be as fruitful and injury free as it was 2016. If you are a runner you know, the worst thing to happen is to have an injury that prevents you from exercising the lovely art of running.
After searching and researching and reading books about nutrition and also talking with some Vegan friends of mine in April of 2013, I decided to adopt a plant-based diet not knowing where it will lead.
The first three months were not the best month of my life; I was constantly out of energy, and I almost quit, but I did notice some weight loss, so I decided to continue.
After a lot of experimentation, I found out that I was not eating enough calories to support my training program of me running marathons and other races of various distances, once I fixed that I noticed that I was not without energy anymore and I was also losing weight.
A combination of running and a whole plant based diet had, as a result, to reach at some point 147 pounds (67 kg)! But that was too thin for me so after a few dietary changes again now I am between 158 lbs (72kg) and 162 lbs (74 kg). Overall I lost about 44 pounds in 3 years, and that’s not the difficult part, the difficult part was not to gain them back again.
So I am glad for maintaining my weight and not gaining any more. In 2017 I wish to repeat this and not gain any more sick weight.
Another goal I set up for 2016 and partly I fulfill it was to continue writing books and publishing it on Amazon.com and also read books. I managed again to read more than 75 books this year again.
Writing books for me is something that makes me feel useful and is a kind of consolation that many many many (smile) year from now people will still remember me through my books unless of course, we managed to kill each other with nuclear bombs!
For 2017 as writing and reading is a concern I intend to continue but I also want to try my luck in other market areas also. I already started reading on what it needs to be able to use amazon.com and other, markets in another way except for books.
Well, that’s what was in my mind, and I needed to unload (smile).
I hope I helped.
Have a healthy and happy day.
My warmest Regards