The Decision to Make a Documentary

I am finally back home and I am finally prepared to re-engage the wired world. It has not gone unnoticed that I stopped writing for two months and it is commonly understood by the (very) few who follow my site that whenever I stop writing it is simply because I can’t keep up with my real life, what is going on in the world and writing about it all at once.

So, I am back home and have a little time and a little money. The money part is easy to explain: there is almost nothing worth buying in the region where I work, so it is easy to save money. The reason I have time on my hands is that I have been invited to do some proper adventuring again but this will take a little over a month to materialize and might not at all. So I’m on standby and will sit still for over 30 days, and that brings me a rare chance to do something I’ve always wanted to do, make a documentary about exercise and diet.

My idea is straightforward. I believe the movie Super-Size Me to be greatly biased and founded on dramatic presentation and playing the small (and supposedly noble) advocate against a great evil empire rather than a real documentary based on truth. Further, I have witnessed the human body do some pretty amazing adaptations and firmly believe that exercise is generally more important than diet in determining health given that the diet is not absolutely extreme in nature. It is important to note here that the guy in Super-Size Me deliberately restricted himself from performing any exercise and also deliberately over ate at an astounding rate. This was done with the specific intent of getting fat, and therefore reduces his conclusion to a non-shocker: “I over ate and become a fatass.” That is absolutely no McDonald’s fault. He could have done the same thing eating couscous and bananas, but his movie was a targeted attempt to attack McDonald’s, corporate America and make things appear a specific way.

So I am starting with the hypothesis that fatasses are fatasses because they eat too much and that no specific food, company, economic model, or nation is to blame for lazy, incompetent living. I hold that McDonald’s is not the absolute diet devil that Super-Size Me makes it out to be (and other fast food, but McDonald’s specifically was attacked by the movie, so it will be my example as well) and also hold that many parts of the First World are experiencing an epidemic of lazy butter beast inflation (not just America). I should also state here that I can’t stand lazy people and if you fail at life so badly that you can’t control your own weight then we should just let you die and be rid of you.

But I am getting rantish now. I will stop and save it for later.

What I propose to do is to eat exclusively from McDonald’s for 30 days straight and document the experience and demonstrate that it will not severely reduce my athletic performance. My vehicle for this athletic demonstration will be the sports that I engage in as a regular hobby: ass-whipping (and getting my ass whipped on occasion). I enjoy wrestling, jiu-jitsu, Muai Thai and MMA intensely as a participant and train every chance I get. I will continue with my typical set of training routines including running, weight lifting, combatives (of various types), eating shitloads and sleeping — the only component that will be different from my normal training days will be that every calorie will come from McDonald’s instead of my own cook pots.

I also absolutely do not accept the flimsy argument that poor people are fat because McDonald’s is the only food they can afford and will demonstrate that it costs far more to eat from McDonald’s than it does to eat real food from the ordinary grocery store. Poor people tend to be poor because they make poor money decisions, such as eating at McDonald’s thinking they are saving a buck in addition to a host of other bad decisions — such as letting their kids be raised by the TV, letting their kids pursue early acquisition of diabetes (by being little fatasses themselves), joining Amway thinking they will really break out, and spending money on things poor people really don’t have room in their budget for such a gambling, alcoholism and smoking.

I should add that I have never been an advocate of steroid use or even of sports supplements. Steroids work, very well, but I just do not consider the cost, risk, and unknowns to be worth the trouble. I also do not like needles and am scared to put stuff in my body that I’m not 100% sure about. I know a lot of people who have used steroids and they certainly get results with the proper (extreme) workout routines and (equally extreme) diet, but there is a lot of shakey stuff out there and it just scares me. I have always been proud of owning everything I’ve gained on my own and really do not stand to gain much from gaining more muscle super fast. And this brings me to supplements. I never take supplements because I have never found them to work — at least for me. If someone takes steroids maybe they actually need the extra nutrients supplement drinks, bars and goo give you, but in the end supplements are just food that has already been eaten for you. And I like eating. I have always found that steak, eggs, salad, rice, etc. work far better for me, taste a lot better and are far less expensive. The only supplement I ever take, and will continue to during this 30 days, is a single multivitamin per day. I should also state that I am very experienced in gaining and losing weight and personally do not find it very difficult to do because I already have a healthy routine of exercise established and have learned how to set reasonable fitness goals — a fact I have the US Army and the jiu-jitsu tournament community to thank for. I am always gaining or losing weight. It does require discipline (more at some times than others) but it is a habit now and  easy to discipline myself for because I work out every day, feel it every day in my body and enjoy thinking about it and what my next goal is and how far I have to get there.

So all that blather being said in a highly unorganized and ineffective way, I am going to start filming my experience soon and eventually create a spot on this website to post it and the results with all the statistics and data necessary to fully explain what happened to me, how long it took, how I felt and how much it cost me compared to eating real food. I do not have a sponsor and likely will never get one so this is going to be a bit on the ghetto side of documentary making until I learn what I’m doing with the camera and with editing. I’ve never even given an on-screen interview but I know I will have to narrate at some point in this project.

This has been an idea I’ve been wanting to do for a few years but just never found the time. Now I’ve got the time and its on.

Give this some time to materialize. It will take a while, I’m sure.

2 thoughts on “The Decision to Make a Documentary

  1. Jecniv

    Interesting shift. As an avid reader of the blog and a one-time amateur sports nutritionist, I am excited to see what comes of it. I agree with your hypothesis to a point, but I do not discount the notion that some are born with a genetic propensity to store more adipose tissue.
    So when she says, “I’s just big-bowned!” hey, who knows…

    Reply
  2. zxq9 Post author

    While some may be born with a slight propensity to store more adipose tissue than others and be perfectly healthy while carrying a higher or lower body fat percentage, I reject the notion that this can come anywhere close to explaining why people are far more fat today worldwide than in the recent past (within my personal memory, even).

    If you remember back just twenty years ago our idea of a “fat” kid was a kid who today we would simply say is a bit heavy. The standards and even semantics of being a fatass have changed drastically. It is, in my view, at least as much about changing social standards as it is nutrition. This is the position I wish to examine from an athletic angle. I would like to look less at what we are eating and more at what we are doing or failing to do.

    I also want to bounce this off of a trained geneticist and nutritionist who I know very well, and let her have a crack at interpreting all the data I collect and explaining her take at both a high and low resolution. I’ll get more into the weeds as time goes on… that is best left to the show itself, which I plan to start shooting next week if possible. Hopefully editing will not take too long.

    Reply

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