Archive for the ‘fat loss’ Category

A picture says a 1,000 words (or in this case 40+ extra pounds).  Other than my obvious state of half-sleep (the picture was taken at 7 a.m.) my well-rounded cheeks and less-than-subtle second chin aren’t camera-shy.  It appears much of what used to be known as “my chin” is now lost in a round, full face.   A face that sits upon a neck that sits upon a slow, lethargic, weak body.  Wow, this sounds even worse typed out than it sounded as part of my internal monologue.  So as far as changing this less than flattering look it is important to begin with an adequate assessment of my current (not-so-)well-being.   Let’s just say that most categories leave plenty of room for improvement.  Some will be updated on Wednesday with more accurate numbers, but this is what I’ve got thus far. (more…)

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Has it really been almost five months since I last posted an update?  Is it true that since that update I’ve had several failed attempts to get back into my fitness journey?  Unfortunately the answer to both is yes.   The last five months I have done a much better job procrastinating and indulging than getting motivated and active.  Of course I could blame the many tentacled octopus that is my dissertation; the beast that devours my time, energy, and life.  Or I could blame my darn cavity riddled teeth I can’t afford to fix that bring me so much continual pain– especially in the cold weather.   But I won’t (although since I mentioned them I guess that is sort of a not-so-subtle way of gaining your sympathy; and by your I am probably speaking mostly to the comment-bots)!  Instead I will let you know where I am in my fitness reboot.

The honest (and painful) truth, I look like this guy again.  And no matter how hard I try I can’t help but return to this point over and over again.   Where am I now?  I weigh in at about 207 lbs and my waist measures 41.25 inches (disturbing those measurements are almost exactly the same as back in 2007 when I started this blog).   And what of my goal of competing on Ninja Warrior?  Well, it shouldn’t be hard to guess I never quite got to that.  I am not one to give up on dreams though.  The Ninja Warrior folks have been helpful by creating tryout out in California– so my goal will be a bit easier to achieve given it won’t require a passport or flying across an ocean.  So why not begin again?  Why not take what I have learned from all my failed attempts and let the wisdom of time (and accumulated error) benefit my present out of shape self?  I don’t see a reason why it shouldn’t.

So I am throwing my hat back in the ring (is that even a real saying?).  I am throwing it in knowing the first couple of weeks of workouts are never easy.  I am throwing it in knowing that the first two months of running feels more like balancing jello on two taped together chopsticks than something elegant you could call “running.”  I am throwing it in knowing I will be stressed out writing a dissertation chapter that is due on January 20th, 2012.  I am throwing it in knowing my teeth will undoubtedly hurt.  I am throwing it in knowing that this might not even be a real idiom I have used to structure this paragraph.   (more…)

Well this is how I look now.  A long way from where I was three years ago.  I’ve been stuck somewhere between 185 and 195 for about a year now.  I took these pictures on Monday morning when I weighed 195 lbs and my waist measure 39 inches.  Here are the side and front shot as well.

Here is a screen capture of my MedHelp account; a very helpful website with lots of useful trackers.  Since December 26th, 2010, I’ve dropped 7.6 pounds, 1.5 inches from my waist, and about 3% off my body fat percentage.    I feel better, I am not hungry all the time, and I have much more control over my nutritional choices.

My day-to-day nutrition now involves a lot more fruits and vegetables.  I especially enjoy a nice fruit salad of pears, raspberries, strawberries, and blueberries.   About 80% of the meat and dairy I (and my family) consume are now from local organic farms that don’t use hormones.  The beef and lamb are grass-fed too.  The chicken, turkey, and eggs are all local and free range.  I’ve also switched over to whole milk (instead of 2% or skim).  The basic calorie math doesn’t make up for the filling effects and better nutritional balance of whole milk.  I will also, once I invest in a better cooler, start purchasing kefir from our local (read 40 minutes away) Whole Food’s as a sometimes replacement for Whole Milk.    Our fridge is also stocked with plenty of cow and goat cheeses from local farms.

I’ve also upped my intake of salads and various vegetables.  While I am not enamored with the idea of raw diets (Especially 100% raw diets) I have increased my consumption of raw foods from a very low-level to more around 50%.

It goes without saying that many of the processed foods have vanished from my pantry and fridge.  And to be honest, I can’t complain.  I am enjoying my food more, and my stomach is definitely happier about my change in diet.     I am looking forward to seeing where I am by Feb. 1, 2011.  No goals, no stress, I plan on just sticking with healthy eating and exercise and seeing where it gets me.

This is a tasty snack with low calories, whole wheat, plenty of veggies, and lots of healthy fat (depending on how you make it).   The base is simple (and cheap), a whole wheat Joseph’s Pita (you can buy 6 in a package for $2.79 at Wal-mart).   Their whole wheat pita has a well-balanced nutritional content (see image below).  From there the steps are simple. (more…)

(1) I’m back to 6 meals a day.  For an idea of my average day check out my meals from yesterday:

  • B/Fast: 3 eggs, 4 slices center cut low-fat bacon, 100% whole wheat toast
  • Snack: Apple (sliced up) with 2 tablespoons organic peanut butter
  • Lunch: London broil slices with mozzarella cheese, onions, garlic, cooked in 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • Snack: 12-hour protein shake
  • Dinner: Curry chicken breast with carrots, rice, corn, cucumbers
  • Snack: Pistachios

*NOTE: all the above foods contained no added sugars or High Fructose Corn Syrup.

(2) My Workouts are up and running again.   I am sticking with a simple formula of 30 minute workouts based around three two exercise supersets of ten minutes each with a rest of 3 minutes between each.  I go all out for ten minutes, from one exercise to the next and back again until time runs out.  For example, Wednesday’s workout:

  • Superset 1: Goblet Squats (reps descending from 10 to 1)/Push Press (reps descending from 10 to 1)
  • Superset 2: Push-ups (10 reps per set/7 sets)/ Side-to-side knee movement (8 reps per side/7 sets)
  • Superset 3: Chin-ups (1 set as many reps as possible, remaining 6 sets 10-30 second negatives)/ Skull crushers on kitchen bench (seven sets of 5 reps).

(3) I’ve scheduled more “fun exercise” into my daily routine.  30 minutes on the trampoline with my daughter.

(4) I’ve instituted a level of financial discipline which should carry over to my nutritional intake and exercise routines.  Our new grocery budget of $65/week (a considerable drop) has done wonders to cut the excess snacks from my cart.

I am looking forward to seeing what I can accomplish before the first day of class on January 19th.

I ache ALL over.  My legs hurt (especially thanks to those one-legged squats), my shoulders hurt (thanks to push presses), and my core huts thanks to pretty much every exercises I did yesterday.  Oddly enough, otherwise I feel great.   I have plenty of energy, my guts doesn’t quite feel as annoying (even though its only slightly less noticeable visually), and even when I wince with pain when I stand up or shift in my seat it is a good reminder of a workout that went better than expected.

I am not going to push myself too hard as I get back into the swing of things.  For the next three weeks I will stick to about 3 days of heavy training per week with one day off between workouts (and one day day off period each week).

But today is anything but a “day off.”  I almost titled this post something like “first day off,” but i deleted that title.  I deleted it for a reason.  There are no day offs in fitness.  While I won’t be lifting any weights today (with the possible exception of tossing my daughter around) I am working very hard on my nutritional intake.     Today’s meals include:

  • Breakfast: 12-hour Elite Protein Shake
  • Snack: Protein Bar with an Apple
  • Lunch: 2 slices of whole wheat toast with roast beef, turkey breast, lettuce, tomato, spicy mustard, and spinach.
  • Snack: walnuts, unsweetened shredded coconut, and dark chocolate.
  • Dinner:  Function at church, so I have no clue what will be offered.   This will be my first real challenge.
  • Before Bed: 12-hour elite protein shake with milled flax seed
  • ***NOTE: Water is consumed in large quantities throughout the day with and between meals.

I am definitely looking forward to tomorrow’s meals.  I bought a bunch of turkey drumsticks and I will be putting them in the rotisserie with some herbs and spices.