As readers of this website and my friends know, I have spent the last five years recovering from a horrific motorcycle accident where the first person on the scene restored my breathing , I coded twice in an ambulance on the way to Carilion-Roanoke Memorial and again in the hospital.

“Coded” means dying and I apparently tried to do that at least four times from the accident where I laid my Harley Davidson down to try to avoid hitting a black cow on dark U.S. 221 at Poage Valley Road in Roanoke County on Nov.9, 2012.

When I left the hospital on Dec. 24, I weighed 40 pounds less and faced months of recovery with physical therapists and the my own efforts.

The therapists and doctors did their job. Sadly, I did not. Three weeks ago, the 40 pounds I lost have returned — 20 of them added over this past winter — and I needed to get my butt in gear and start taking care of myself.

It stared with a return to physical therapy — twice a week at Peak Rehab in Floyd — rejoining the Floyd Fitness Center with a schedule of three times a week (Monday, Wednesday and Friday) for 45-minutes of intense cardio vascular work to restore the strength in my lower legs and return to at least an acceptable level of reasonable physical heath at age 70.

On this Saturday morning, my belt requires going two notches down to keep my pants up and clothes that were tight three months ago are loosening up.

My daily breakfasts of bacon, eggs and wheat toast are now coffee and a bowl of fruit.  Lunch is a salad and dinners consist of grilled or baked chicken breast strips, turkey strips or a can of water-packed tuna with bowls of fruit.  From time to time, my “treat” is a hamburger patty with no bread or trimmings and the fruit bowl.

The goal is to drop at least 35 pounds by the end of 2018 and a buildup to at least hour-long stints in the gym every other morning, starting at 5:30 a.m.

Will it work?  Let’s hope so. I flirted with an earlier-than-desired death if I didn’t take my life back under control.

I had that 40 pounds of excess weight when I crashed in 2012.  I had slimmed down but started putting weight back on in later years.  Routing motorcycle riding is a lot of fun but is mostly sitting and leaning.  One does not eat up calories that way.

Neither does sitting at a computer console, editing videos, preparing pictures for publication or writing news stories and columns.  To compensate, I need walking a lot more, putting miles on a bicycle or exercise bike, limbering my body on a rowing machine and following a cycle of “reps” with weights to restore strength in my arms and legs.

It is not easy and requires determination and resistance to temptation.

Let the fun begin.