Disclaimer: This is the second attempt at this article, the first of which was inadvertently erased due to impulsiveness and ineptitude. This has led the author to give an abridged introduction with slightly less exposition, giving the reader more of the “how” than the “why,” and 150% more dick jokes. Enjoy.
In February 2015, I was diagnosed with both high blood pressure and acute ischemic cardiomyopathy, or an enlarged heart muscle that caused the heart to pump blood at a quarter of healthy levels. The stress on my body, caused by my condition and also taking seven different prescriptions daily, led to occasional erectile dysfunction…which is EXACTLY the one side effect you want when you’re an otherwise healthy, sexually active thirty-three year-old. So rather than reach for the little blue pill, an implant, or a Swedish-made penis pump formerly owned by Austin Powers, International Man of Mystery, I opted to get things flowing again with proper diet, exercise, and meditation.
I knew that regular exercise was a non-negotiable, but I wanted to see how far I could push my body and increase my stamina and endurance, both to improve my cardiovascular health, my lung capacity, and yes, my sack time. Gym visits are now a daily requirement, with each trip consisting of two, sometimes three, separate sessions of high-intensity interval training (for both fat loss afterburn and the previously mentioned conditioning benefits,) as well as weigh training for strength and vanity purposes. After all, being healthy and living a long life is extremely fulfilling, but looking good naked during that long life is what makes things fun.
My diet was one that was about 80% healthy, with mostly home-cooked meals composed of lean meat, whole grains, fruits and veg, and minimal sweets. I rarely eat fast food and am working on reducing my alcohol intake. But in order to make sure I left nothing to chance, I began stocking my fridge with the most protein-packed, nutrient-rich, scientifically-proven-to-improve-my-circulation (ahem) foods the internet could recommend. I made sure to consult only the most reputable sites and blogs, from MensHealth.com, WebMD.com, AskMen.com, and other articles and blog sites I deem legit enough to take advice from.
This article is part of an ongoing series chronicling the progress of my diets, workout and meditation practice. Next up is a rundown of my shopping list, in all its fiber-and-zinc-packed glory.