Eight weeks ago I started experiencing a significant measure of pain in my left chest/shoulder area.  It turns out after seeing the doctor, that the broken collar bone and separated AC joint (football injuries from back in the day when we wore leather helmets) had severely compromised my sterno-clavicular joint.  Bottom line: the joint where my collarbone joins my sternum is messed up and I’m now pretty limited as to what I can do without irritating it.

I typically do some kind of intense “crossfit” type of workout at least four times a week – mostly to help slow down the aging process on my almost 50 year old body so I can keep up with my 9 and 11 year old boys.  Additionally, it helps me keep from dieing when I hike with my buddies in the Chugach.

What’s surprised me these past two months is how the more I get out of shape, the worse I’m eating.  As much I like to work out and stay in shape, I’m also normally a very healthy eater.  I don’t eat fast food or junk food and I eat in moderation.

This past weekend I realized I was out of control . . . eating myself into oblivion.  Compulsive.  Beyond full.  Sugar. Salt. Carbs.  Any time of day.

At first the correlation didn’t make sense to me.  What would cause me to eat healthier when I’m feeling good and getting lots of exercise and eat worse when I'm feeling so lousy?

I was using food to medicate myself . . . to feel better.  But like any addictive behavior, the crash always left me in greater need of “medicine.”  So today I’m at the end of day two of a fast, exposing how I can use food and how I can use ANYTHING (my phone, TV, exercise, food, sex, computer) to keep me from facing life on life’s terms.

If I see my life I will feel my life.  If I feel my life, I will find myself in need.  And if I find myself in need, I'll end up in surrender.  Otherwise, I am an addict looking for an addiction, an idolator looking for idols.

This was a new one for me . . . or at least the realization of it is new.

Sad.  Lonely.  Hurt.  Fear.  Angry.  Shame.  Guilt.  Glad.


  1. I once commented to a mentor who knew my heart that life is "just so complicated." After a pause where the weight of my words hung heavily in the air, she spoke words that I am so reminded of by yours, Jeff.

    "No. It's really simple."

    And in that instant I was overwhelmed with a wave of hope that I didn't understand in my head, but knew in my heart had the power to transform.

    Thanks, Jeff.

  2. Dean, writing this blog was worth it to read your response. Yes, it's simple. No black and white and not simplistic. But simple.