Category Archives: Health and Fitness

The Fat Beast within

It’s Employee Appreciation week at work. This is something that my workplace does every year to show their heartfelt gratitude for the feeble efforts of us little guys. I say that in jest. My company does put a lot of effort into keeping us happy, and that’s a hell of a lot more than I can say for most places. Sure, like all top-down, hierarchial organizations, it has its faults, but there are far worse places out there. I’ve worked at a few. There are places out there that don’t give two shits about their rank and file employees, places that view their people, the lifeblood of their organizations, as just another resource to be exploited. I have much to be thankful for in this department.

So, this week my work is catering meals every day and has a continually filled popcorn machine on the grounds. The old me would revel in these facts, and not give a second thought to stuffing his fat face with reckless abandon. The me of today is locked in an internal struggle, a battle of wills. On the one side is my rational mind, which has helped me lose seventy pounds, and does not want to see me lose ground. However, on the other side, is a thoughtless and hungry animal, that doesn’t give a rat’s ass about getting and staying in shape. This beast only cares about its next burrito or cupcake. This creature knows no self-control. So far, the beast has had its way.

I am going to have to get a grip soon, or I will lose all the progress that I have made. I know I can do this. I have proven that I can do this. And most importantly, I really, really want to do this. With that said, tomorrow is lasagna day, and the beast is hungry.

That’s all for tonight, friends. Thanks for reading!

The Friendly Skys, and my Funk

Hello, friends. It’s been a while since my last post. I’ve been in a little bit of a funk lately. I’m trying to pull myself out of it and reestablish my good habits. Like with most things in life, it’s a continual struggle. Writing is definitely one of my good habits. Aside from this public blog, I also have private journals, which I have also been neglecting. The funk, like the rain, comes periodically, but it always gives way to the sun again.

Our trip to Colorado happened. It was good to spend time with our family there. We didn’t do a lot besides hang out at the house, play cards, and generally catch up with everyone. This trip was really more of a test run to see how flying standby was going to work. One of our close friends is an employee of United airlines and has graciously added us to his travel pass program. This allows us to fly at cost (under $40 a leg), as long as there are empty seats on the flight. For the most part, everything worked fine. Our first flight was canceled due to mechanical problems, but we were able to get out the next day. The only problem we had was me getting motion sickness.

I have never experienced motion sickness before. In fact, my stomach is usually ironclad. I can fall asleep on most roller coasters, so having this happen on an airplane was really unexpected. I think it had something to do with the bizarre combination of food that I had eaten that morning. I started the day out with a bag of Combos and a Coke. On the flight, the attendant offered us a snack box, since we had to endure sitting on their plane for so long the previous day. Oh, forgot to mention that we boarded and deplaned twice on the ill-fated flight. Back to the infamous snack box. The box contained an assortment of meats, cheeses, crackers, and M&M’s. I ate some of all the items. So, I had this devil’s brew churning in my stomach, and the flight was a bumpy one. Nausea wasted no time seizing me. It was horrible. I spent most of the flight teetering on the verge of blowing chunks. It took every ounce of focus and energy that I had to prevent this from happening on the plane. When we landed, I made a b-line for the bathroom, where I remained, violently barfing, for about half an hour.

I suppose I can’t let this post go without saying something about the United controversy. I’ve flown with United a few times, even before the whole standby thing, and I have never had a problem. Their people have always been super nice and helpful. The video of Dr. Dao getting wrenched out of his seat and drug away like an animal was pretty hard to watch. Obviously, I condemn the violence that was used to force him off the plane. It shouldn’t have happened, but in a way, I’m glad it did. Large corporations seldom change their policy unless they are forced to. This viral video footage and the ensuing national outrage against United will ensure that the airlines take a hard look out how they treat passengers. Last I heard United is even talking about doing away with their practice of overbooking flights altogether. So there is a lot of positive change in the works now, thanks to Dr. Dao’s stubbornness. With all that said, my thoughts are that the dude should have got off the plane before being manhandled off. This is basically my personal policy with people who are “in authority.” If it were me, just like if I were being treated unfairly by the police, I would calmly state that I believe they are in the wrong to demand that I do something against my will, and then I would shut my trap and comply. Why? Because the police and security personnel are human beings. They do not like having their supposed authority challenged. As we seen in the video, things can get ugly when you cross that line. I would begrudgingly comply with their demands, and complain and possibly sue the shit out of them later. However, that wouldn’t make for a good game-changing viral video though, so thanks, Dr. Dao for taking one for the team.

We must remember that everyone we deal with in our day to day lives are also human beings. I have found that the simple act of being nice to the people who serve us goes a long, long way. Sure, you can be an asshole if you want. It’s a free country after all. Just remember that when they need someone to get off their plane, it’s probably not going to be the guy who smiled at them and asks them how their day is going. Treat people well, and life will get a lot easier for you, I guarantee it.

Back to my funk. For the past few weeks, I have been losing ground with my weight loss. I am still doing the intermittent fasting, and only eating once a day. However, I haven’t been doing well on my food choices. Last week, due to poor planning, we had fast food every day. Thanks to the fasting I haven’t ballooned up to 300 pounds, but I have gotten back up into the 250’s. I’ve been gaining about 1.5 pounds a week. This has got to stop. I’m going to make sure that we get to the store and stock up on healthy food for next week, and with any luck, I will be back on track by next Saturday.

That’s all I have for now. Till next time.

Begging your forgivness

I apologize for my hiatus. Don’t you hate it when bloggers and vloggers say that? Every time I heard one of the people that I subscribe to say, “I’m so sorry it’s been so long since my last video/post,” I cringed. I didn’t care. It’s your channel/blog/podcast, make content whenever you damn well please. Sure, if you are interesting I will miss you, but I’ll get over it. I honestly doubt that anyone takes notice when I miss a day or two of blogging. If you do, the God bless you, my loyal reader. You have done well. Now get a life. Just kidding.

Anyway, my struggle with the Standard American Diet (SAD) continues. I was looking over the spreadsheet that I track my weight in, and found a pattern. For the past couple of months, I have been holding steady at around 245 pounds. One week I will lose 1.5 pounds, and the next week I will gain it back. This whole time I have been faithfully doing my intermittent fasting protocol. During the week I eat only once a day. The problem is that I have been eating the standard junk food diet that the average American eats. Sure, I’m only eating it once a day, but the result is that I am not losing any weight. I am holding my ground. I am still experiencing the freedom from stomach problems that used to plague me, and I credit that to allowing my GI track to rest for twenty hours out of the day. But, I would really like to start making ground again.

I know in my previous post that I said that I was getting back on track. That didn’t happen. I was unable to muster the willpower to do it. I am not giving up, though. I plan to try again this week, with a few modifications. I’m scrapping the whole ‘wristband’ idea. I tried it for a  couple of days, and surprise, it didn’t prevent me from eating junk. I think instead I am going to go back to basics with my old 3pm to 7pm window. I am going to take a bag of walnuts and a couple of Cutties (small oranges) with me to eat on my way home from work. That’s what I used to do, and I believe it helped me to stay on track. The other thing is that I have got to work in some physicall excersie into the equation. I am going to try to get in three quick resistance workouts a week. My work place has an excersie room with dumbells and kettlebells. I must start taking advantage of it.

I’m hoping that If I can successfully jumpstart my weightloss plan again that all the other stuff will follow suite. I don’t want to be one of those bloggers who shamelssly abandon their writting and readers for months on end, only to come crawling back, apologizing for not being there. That’s not me.

So, that’s all for now. How have you peeps been holding up without me? Hit me up in the comments or on Twitter sometime.

Gotta get a grip

The struggle continues, friends. On my last weigh-in, I was up two pounds. That is freakin unacceptable. I have gotten to a point where I let the slightest thing, the tiniest inconvenience deter me from my plan. I started out with the best of intentions this morning. I stayed on my protocol perfectly until I got off work. Denice picked me up from work, and we had one errand to run before going home. We took the car to get the tires rotated. It was going to be an hour wait, and there was a Cheddars right next door. We instantly gave in and commenced stuffing our faces.

The worst part of it was that I was not even hungry. I usually experience mild hunger early in the day, but once that passes I am fine. There was no reason for me to eat out tonight other than being compelled to by a bad habit. This must change.

I have an idea to help myself remember to stay on the protocol. It’s extremely simple, but I think it may be effective. I’m going to get one of those cheap silicon wristbands, probably a black one. While I am on my protocol, Sunday through Friday, I will wear this wristband. It will remind me that I am to have my self-discipline turned on, and cannot deviate from the plan. If I want to go off plan, I will have to consciously remove the wristband. I am hoping this small exercise in mindfulness will allow me to stick to the protocol better. We’ll see.

I still have not gotten back on track from the epic relapse I fell into during my last vacation. Well, I have another vacation coming up the first week in April. I have to get my head game under control or I am going to have a bad time.

Tomorrow I begin again. I have come too far to give up. One way or the other, I am going to do this thing.

Vicious indeed

I had a rough time waking up this morning. The past two nights I have been hours late getting to bed. I see this pattern happen over and over again. I basically get out of sync. It usually starts with me neglecting to do my breathing/meditation exercises. Once this happens it creates a cascade effect. The next to falter is my eating begins to get out of control. When my eating goes bad my energy starts to drop. With less energy, I have trouble getting everything done in a day that I need to, and this, in turn, causes me to neglect my sleep. The sleep deficit feeds back into the vicious cycle and makes everything worse.

I seem to go through cycles. I will have a span of time that I am able to keep my shit together and do all the self-care things that I need to do to maintain my well-being. Then, from time to time, I will slowly lose control until everything just falls apart. I always get back on track, eventually. It’s very frustrating that I operate like this. I try, very hard, to stay level, but invariably I always fail. It’s just the human in me, I guess.

I am currently in one of my downturns. I haven’t lost complete control yet, and I do not intend to. Of course, what I intend doesn’t always happen. I am hoping to get a grip on things before the crash occurs. Self-care is very important. Our bodies and minds are much like machines, and all machines require regular maintenance. Without it, we do break.

The Protocol 2.o

Hi, friends. I would like to touch base (I hate that phrase. Sounds super toolish) on my protocol. I have yet to regain full composure with my dietary program. I have been able to mostly stay on schedule with the intermittent fasting, but my food choices have not been the best. I have reverted back to the SAD (Standard American Diet). As bad as this is, the full negative effects of this have not been realized, mostly because of the fasting I believe. I am still slowly losing weight, only about a pound or two a week, though. The most concerning thing about this is that my nutritional needs are not being met. This must change immediately.

The program I had been following, the ‘Slow Carb Diet,’ consists of five basic rules:

  • Avoid “white” starchy carbohydrates (or those that can be white). This means all bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, and grains. If you have to ask, don’t eat it.
  • Eat the same few meals over and over again. (keep it simple)
  • Don’t drink calories.
  • Don’t eat fruit. (Fructose –> glycerol phosphate –> more body fat, more or less.) Avocado and tomatoes are excepted.
  • Take one day off per week and go nuts. (I take two days. It still works.)

This diet worked pretty well while I was doing it, but I have not been able to sustain it. The main issues I have with it are the not being able to eat starchy vegetables and fruit. I’m not sure that these two rules are the best for me. After all, I am very comfortable with eating only once a day. I doubt a potato or two, or an apple once a day is going to have an impact on my weight loss. I think adding these foods back into my diet would allow me to better meet my nutritional needs, and help me stick to the program throughout the week.

Another problem that I have been having with my eating protocol is my completely uncontrolled “cheat weekend.” I don’t just relax the rules on the weekends, I shred them. I eat so much junk food on Saturday and Sunday that I often get physically sick from it. This cannot be healthy. I have to find some kind of balance with this stuff. So, here is what I’m going to try out starting tomorrow:

  • Two sessions of the Wim Hof Method (once in the morning and another before bed).
  • Eat one meal a day, six days a week.
  • Reserve Saturday only for anything goes.
  • Drink water only
  • All whole foods are ok (even starches and fruits), but nothing processed, and no bread or dairy.
  • Daily Exercise (specifics to be determined)

I am going to start keeping better records as well. I have to track what I’m doing better or I will have no foundation to make effective changes.

I’m hoping these tweaks will allow me to get back on track and move forwards towards my goals. I have every intention of being a super healthy person in the near future. It’s going to happen. I will not be denied.

 

Moving forward

Alas, my vacation has come to an end. It’s probably for the best. I haven’t evolved to the point that I can survive without the externally imposed structure of a work schedule. I need more personal development. I will get there. I know I will. I’m just not there yet.

I have been living with very little constraints for the past week. I would be lying if I told you that I was not concerned about my ability to resume the protocol tomorrow. However, regardless of how uncomfortable it is I must do it. To not do it would be to throw in the towel, and I’m not going to do that. No, I will continue my evolution. I am becoming something different from what I am now, and I am going to see it through.

My plan is simple. I will be in bed early enough tonight to get a full eight hours of sleep. When I wake up I will do three rounds of the Wim Hof Method and meditation. I will not eat any food until tomorrow evening, but before that I will do some resistance exercises. I will do a light slow-carb meal every day this coming week. Resistance excercise will be on Monday, Tuesday, and Friday. Every night I will finish the day with the Wim Hof Method and a contrast shower. Saturday morning I will start the day with a micro-nutrient smoothie. I think if I repeat this protocol for a few weeks I will be solidly on my way.

Tomorrow begins a new day.