Sunday, March 30, 2008

New Exercise?

It has been an excellent weekend as far as staying on point is concerned. Maybe not particularly following the WW Healthy Guidelines, but overall a good weekend. Carrie, Jay, Kelly, Jeff, Janessa and I went to the roller derby on Saturday evening. They skate in 2 minute "Jams" at full speed. They appear to be exhausted at the end of that 2 minutes so that got me to thinking of Roller Derby would be a good way to pick up some activity points. We continued to watch and I quickly learned that I am not cut out for it. These girls are incredibly talented and are knocking the crap out of one another. So for now I am sticking with the gym. But I will happily go back to the Roller Derby. Check 'em out here.

See you Tuesday for a weigh in update if not before.

Oh and if anyone would like to join us for the next bout shoot me an email.

Friday, March 28, 2008

A week to remember

So I am gonna go ahead and pat myself on the back after this week. I rode my stationary hard on Monday night, weighed in Tuesday and have worked out every morning since. I lost 4.4 lbs last week and got past my personal 10% mark. Looking back I did that with cardio alone and that was just the recumbent bike. I fully intend on using this gym a minimum of 3 days a week and probably more like 5. I get to see my very good friends Jay and Kelly every morning. (Thanks for recommending the gym I love it)

On a side note: Isn't it cool to have friends who you can see at the gym in the morning and exchange all of 3 words and there is just an understanding that there is no need to chat it up, we are all there to get something accomplished not be particularly social. Jay and Kelly get that. If fact another one of my best friends Jason gets that to, he and I can go golfing and barely speak, but its completely cool. I guess I just need to say an enormous thank you to all of you out there supporting me. You all push and encourage me and I know that you will not allow me to fail. I want to do this for all of you, for my son, for my girlfriend, and for my family. Where I was at just a couple of months ago and even where I am at today I only have 20 or 25 years left with you guys and you know what, I want 50 or 60. I love you all so very much. Thank you.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

I almost forgot

So yesterday, and this morning I might add, I went to the gym and worked out. I was on the elliptical for 15 minutes this morning and worked my lower body. Yesterday I could only stomach 10 minutes on the elliptical and I worked my upper body. I was not sore until I stopped moving and went to sleep. I woke up at about 3am and my arms and chest were delivering a very clear message. They said to me, "Thank you for finally working our muscles. You have not done it in a very long time". I quite honestly do not remember the last time I was sore like this. I like it. Maybe it is the sadist in me but I am enjoying it. It lets me know that I accomplished something. Even after waking up at 10 till 5:00am and going to the gym I feel more awake and alive today than I have in a long time. For the first time ever I am looking forward to my physical fitness and can see improvement. I feel like I am on a pretty clear path and will continue on it for as long as I live.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008


So I am in such an awesome mood this morning that I thought I should look back at where I was at on Jan 17th 2008. I weighed in at 400 lbs. I was sad, angry and afraid. I had no idea what to do. I started to removed the fast food and diet coke from my daily routine and started looking into the possibility of having weight loss surgery. 2 weeks later after finding that my insurance would not cover a surgery I joined weight watchers. Today some 69 days later I am down to 358. I am not slim and trim like I want to be but I am certainly moving in the right direction.

So looking back, what is different and not so different.
I do not eat fast food, the closest I get to fast food is Subway which is one of the only alternatives to the McDonald's and the like.
I journal everything religiously. I used to eat without thinking, now I do not put something into my body that is not accounted for.
I exercise at least 3 times a week. Prior to Jan 17th the last time I seriously exercised may have been 5 years ago and it maybe more like 15.
I still drink beer and liquor. Weight Watchers does not like it, but I have the occasional couple of beers. Sometimes it is a few more that a couple. I account for them and work my butt off to work them off.
I have a ton more energy. Not so much that I do not know what to do with it all. More along the lines of I am not exhausted my noon.
I used to climb a flight of stairs and be winded, Now I jog up that same flight and I am fine.
I feel better about myself. My confidence grows all the time. I am beginning to see slight differences in my appearance and I like it.
I know more about nutrition that I ever have. Before I was unaware or did not care to know how good or bad particular foods were for me.

I am sure I am over looking some things, but that is a short list. 10% is incredibly motivating. I had no idea until it happened last night exactly how motivating it would be. I feel re energized to go out and tackle the next 10 lbs and knock them out to. This has been an incredible beginning to a life long journey. Thank you to all of you for your support.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

10% !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I lost 4.4 lbs this week. I have now lost 42 lbs over all. That is just over 10% of total weight loss. I am so excited. I know I am not at the WW 10% but I am not sure I care as much about that as much as I am even more motivated now for getting to the 10 percent mark. I am motivated to get to the next 10% more than ever now. Tomorrow morning is the first day at a new gym.

42 pounds and 10%! WAHOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Nervous again? Are you kidding me?

Here we go again. 2:15 on Tuesday and I am nervous about my weigh in. I look forward to it, I am pretty sure I have done well. I set my sights to high last week. and failed although I was not upset. This week I am not sure what to think. I ate pretty good but I did not get in all the exercise I wanted. I am shooting for 35 - 40 activity point or better. In layman's terms it is about 50 - 70 calories per point. I got in 28. I am going to try to swing by a gym tonight that friends are going to. I think with that I need to mix up the workouts, I am becoming bored with the bike and would also like to give it to my mom and dad so they can use it.

Well cheers for now, See you all after weigh in. Keeping my finger crossed.

Also thank you all for reading and for your supportive comments.

Monday, March 24, 2008

How do we fight Childhood Obesity?

How do they do it? How do people who are at a healthy weight stay that way. I have friends who are at that healthy weight and I see them enjoying the cheeseburgers and fries I once enjoyed. Do they work out more, are their bodies better at metabolizing food, Do they eat all rabbit food in private. I honestly do not know the answer to this question. I would guess it is all of the above. My guess would be that our friends who maintain a healthy weight are doing it by snaking less, eating slightly better, and exercising slightly more. They allow themselves the indulgences that I used to enjoy every day only every so often. That cheeseburger and fries are replaced by a ham sandwich. When they eat a bowl of ice cream they only eat a couple of scoops not five or six, and not 5 nights a week. What I am getting at is that while some people may have bodies that allow them to eat like crap and remain skinny most people who maintain a healthy weight are simply doing a better job of not over eating those things that are not healthy. They are doing a better job of getting in more exercise. They may not go to the gym all the time but they incorporate things into their lives that get them more exercise. Whether it is walking the dog, going for a bike ride, or just playing some basketball, they are doing more than I was doing.

The other thing I believe is that people who have maintained a healthy weight grew up this way. They were either eating better and exercising more as kids. This was a learned behavior. Childhood obesity is an epidemic now. As the father to a wonderful son who is thankfully of normal weight, I worry about his weight. Since his birth I have thanked God regularly that he is not overweight. I am glad he does not have to deal with the ridicule and harsh words of children. I endured that and would never wish that on another person. So then how do we teach our children to eat healthier? How do we show them that exercise is important? My first thought is to lead by example. We have to make time to prepare a healthy meal rather than opting for the convenience of delivered pizza and fast food. We need to go on walks with our children, we need to teach them about nutrition by giving them a solid example.

I will say that I could not have been more proud of my son a few days ago. At about at night he came out of his room and asked what healthy snack he could have, I rattled of a few things and he choose and orange. I was so happy that he came to me and asked me for a healthy snack rather than asking for candy or chips. I think we might be heading in the right direction!

Friday, March 21, 2008

When will I learn?

Well I met a friend for dinner last night and feel like I stayed on point for the most part but ended up limiting my food because I had a couple to many beers with our appetizer dinner. I will say this. I was never in a situation where I was out of control. I was not drunk. I just really like beer. We were drinking Guinness and if any of you drink Guinness you may understand my problem. So whats the problem you ask. I have a hard time stopping at 2. I end up having 4 or 6 or possibly more. I have figured out that this process will take years to learn and that there will be times when you need a refresher in what to do. Right now my 2 big goals are to begin to say no more after a couple of beers and to begin to limit my sodium intake.

I am not sure if I am looking for suggestions or personal antidotes or what but any comments are welcome.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

MRI was negative, or was it positive?

Went to the Orthopedic Surgeon this morning with my MRI films in hand and got the results. The results were negative, so that means they were positive for me. Well the films showed no tearing of the ACL or and no cartilage tearing. I have some wear from the arthritis but other that that I am fine. I have a sprain that will require ice, a brace and time to heal. So that is good news. So you tell me, why when you have test run at the doctor do the call the results negative when they are really positive for the patient?

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

This is a long difficult journey

I am gonna just go ahead and say it so it is over with. My loss this week was .2 lbs. That is 2 tenths on 1 pound. I am not sure what I am feeling. I am disappointed. I was really wanting that 40 lb mark. Maybe next week, maybe the week after, maybe the next,I am sure I will get there. I know I will. I am happy that the scales went in the right direction but I think there are 2 things that probably contributed to my less than impressive loss. First. Jeans, Last week I was in lightweight shorts and this week I wore brand new jeans. I have no idea of the difference, but lets just say that there is some. Second is something I will be keeping an eye on. The team leader mentioned something last week that ht home this week. Some times bad weeks or good weeks take a week to show up on the scale. Well that bad weekend a couple of weekends ago might have finally caught up with me. Regardless I am on track again and am looking forward to next weekend.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Did that blow your mind? Because that just happened.

Did you just happen to check on Tiger Woods over the weekend? If not you missed one of the most clutch performances in sports I have ever seen. Unless you play golf you will be hard pressed to understand the pressure of trying to sink a putt with several thousand people staring at you in dead silence. I am a decent golfer and I have to back away from eagle putts in order to regain composure. Tiger just stepped up and drained a 24 foot putt on the last hole to win the tournament. Utterly amazing. If you have not been watching golf I suggest you start. Tiger Woods is the best golfer of my time and by most accounts the best golfer of all times. This year could be his very best year ever. He has won every event he has entered. Become a fan of golf now. History is being made in High Definition on your television.

So I am not just posting about Tiger Woods. I thought this may be a good time to start with some personal goals. I will get into this more at a later date but I thought I would start with one and go from there. As I said before I am a decent golfer. I shoot low 90's most days, crack into the 80's every now and again but have yet to break into the elusive 70's. When I first began playing golf seriously I was 16 years old. My buddies Jay, Jason and I would head to Hodge Park and play 36 holes a day and we walked. Now we play less frequently and we ride in carts. Somewhere along the road golf became about drinking beer and riding in a cart. My goal for the year is this. By the end of august I intend to walk every round of golf I play this year. Walking is better for me and gives you a better feel of distance. I will no longer drink beer on the golf course. I may have a beer or two after a round but I am stopping beer on the course. I would rather enjoy to full bodied good beers and 6 crappy light beers. The third portion of this goal is more difficult than the first, but I would also like to shoot a 79 or lower just once this year. I am hoping that weight loss does not mess with my swing to much. Oh well my health is more important than shooting in the 70's.... Maybe.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Food Find and a MRI

OK I would love to tell you that I found this all on my own but that is not so true. Apparently everyone knew about the Skinny Cow but I failed to get the memo. So with that said. FOOD FIND! Skinny Cow Ice Cream Products rock. They have an assortment of different ice cream type things, Sandwiches, bars and cones. So far I have sampled the sandwiches and the skinny dippers and I can tell you that they are both delicious. I would recommend them over the Weight Watchers Ice Creams but just barely.

So why am I writing about Ice Cream on a weight loss blog? The short answer is I like ice cream. The longer version is that I have found that I get cranky when I begin to crave food and in particular sweets. I think weight watchers plan is great but I think some people think you can still lose weight by staying within your points and eat crap. I think that you have to eat right and then allow your self small indulgences. So mine is ice cream.

Moving on to the Doctor visit I had Friday. I found out on Friday that I have arthritis in both knees and the doc sent me for an MRI on my right knee to detect a possible tear of the ACL. I will be praying that my ACL is fine and I have continued mobility. I am concerned about getting in my exercise if indeed my ACL is torn. So there is something to be said about the weight I have carried all this time. That is what has caused the arthritis. It cannot correct it, but the more weight I lose the less pain I will feel.

I will keep you updated on the knee and I will be weighing in on Tuesday evening so check back to see if I hit a rather monumental goal that night!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Its getting nice outside lets play Trac ball

Has anyone else noticed that this winter seems to be the longest ever. I don't I was good through the end of last year. I had Tiger Football to keep me warm. The last three months have been brutal. Yesterday it was finally really nice outside and I wanted to go ride my new bike with my son but he was not having any of it so I told him that we were not wasting the nice day on video games and TV so we headed to the back yard with out Trac ball and played for every bit of 2 hours. Chuck Norris (the dog) looked like he was on a yo yo chasing the ball as it was thrown back and forth. We both had a great time I still got in a work out late in the evening. I will say that since I have begun this journey and have been more healthy I crave the outdoors much much more. So my message to anyone reading is this. GET OUTSIDE! (yes I am shouting). I will try to post tomorrow evening or over the weekend to let you know how the appointment with the orthopedic surgeon goes.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Knees and walking

Nearly all of my friends are thinner and I have never heard them complain or mention their knees hurting. Well I am here to tell you when you are carting around the weight that I had and even have it can hurt. I think I have always done pretty well, in fact just last summer I played volleyball with some people at work and played just fine. So why should I post about knee pain. I am off to the Orthopedic Surgeon on Friday to have him look at my knees. I have been riding my stationary bike and my mt bike when I can but I had not been out walking. So at lunch I went out and had a nice walk for about 20-25 minutes and walked just over a mile. My knees do hurt, nothing unbearable mind you but they do hurt. This is just one more reason to lose weight. While there are no guarantees that my knees will feel better once I get to my goal weight I feel pretty confident that my knees will deteriorate less quickly if I have 180 - 200 less lbs stressing them all the time.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Cheat? I think not!

This is not up for discussion. I did not cheat. So what if I wore shorts when I had always worn jeans, so what if I did not where the leather belt I had worn to every other weigh in. I came up with a loss of 2.4 lbs. Regardless I know I made some poor choices this last weekend and I am right back on track and will be working out this week more avidly than ever. I am doing what I can to let my poor judgment energize me for the weeks to come. So there it is 2.4 lbs and still rolling along.

I will say that after a week like this you kinda feel like you dodged a bullet. But I have to tell you you that it does help with the to know even though you may make a bad decision you can still have a good week. That said I feel like I will have changes to make to my habits. More moderation on beer and alcohol and I need to learn that when you fall off plan to hop right back on.

I will post something more later this week. Hopefully a new food find or a recipe. Also I am coming up on 10%. I fully intend to be there this next week... Stay tuned.

Monday, March 10, 2008


Lets discuss setbacks today shall we. I would like to recount the last three wonderful days to you and explain why this weekend was a big setback whether the scales say so or not. As you can probably tell things got out of hand over the weekend and I am preparing for my first gain of weight during this process. Lets begin with Friday. Friday morning, afternoon and early evening were fine. Friday night however I had a card game at my house and I indulged on the beer, then I also over indulged on the beer. Moving on to Saturday. Saturday we woke up and we on our way to a birthday party for the daughter of a friend of ours. The party was at Godfathers Pizza and I did have 2 slices of pepperoni, now I was not to unhappy about this since I had only eaten a WW muffin that morning. But then came the Em Chamas Brazilian Grill. We went out with a group of friends and had a wonderful time. I guess the best way to describe this place is extremely Atkins diet friendly. The have a bunch of servers walking around with skewers of roasted meat. We were probably there for about 3 hours or so just chatting and enjoying such a nice dinner. We then went out bowling where I again enjoyed a couple of beers. On to Sunday. I know I know you would think that I would have stopped but we will get to that shortly. Sunday was highlighted by a Jack Daniels burger at TGI Fridays for lunch and some late night lasagna for dinner after Carrie and I went to see Juno.

So now that you have the rundown of the weekends events I would like to tell you why it was a serious setback. Lets forget about the scale until Tuesday as there is an outside shot I could still do something crazy and lose weight. Lets instead focus on the fact that I felt like a complete failure after Friday evening. I beat myself up pretty hard about the amount I drank Friday evening and had it not been for Carrie I probably would have shut myself in and skipped the rest of the weekend. This is the first time I felt really guilty over something I had done while on this journey. I wish I could accurately describe how I felt but it is difficult. I actually was not to unhappy with Saturday. I am certain that I went over in points, however it was a planned event and I was ready for it. I made poor dietary choices that day but they were thoroughly enjoyed. Sunday was a complete disaster. This should have been the day when I got back on the wagon and started back down the path to a thinner and healthier me. Instead I decide that we should go to TGI Fridays and have lunch because I had a gift card and then upon arrival instead of sticking with water I order a Margarita. Genius I tell you. Then to top that with a late night huge serving of lasagna well that was a mistake and I know it.

So last night and this morning I have been analyzing my weekend and trying to see where I went wrong. First I was angry with myself for drinking to much at my poker game. A stupid mistake, but how do you fix it. My first thought we be bottled water. I think if I had something there to drink that was not beer I probably would have drank it, or at least drank the beer in more moderation. Saturday quite honestly I would not change one bit. I ate but it was enjoyed. I drank but in moderation. Overall I had an amazing evening and do not regret it one bit. Sunday is where I really think the setback dug it heels in and said I am here to stay. Rather that making healthy choices I said out loud, "Well I have already blown this weekend so I might as well do it up right". I would be curious to know if anyone reading this has ever been sown this road. When I should have gotten back on the plan I decided that instead I would stay off the plan for one more day. I am still trying to figure out while. I am pretty miserable today. I feel tired and my stomach telling me to never do that again. What is it in the brain that allows a person to be so strong of will for so long and then just fail so completely.

I am back on the plan today and will do my best to ride my bike tonight to burn off some of the bazillion calories I took in over the weekend. I am already looking towards next week. I will be back on track and get back to the plan. So I will see you all Tuesday evening to let you know how the weigh in goes.

ADDITION - in all that negativity I should mention that I went out and bought some new jeans over the weekend that were a size smaller and I also was able to comfortably fit into the next fit down. So there is some good news from the weekend that was. Sorry about all the negativity.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Chunky Tomato Chicken Soup

Last night I came home to make dinner and looked through the fridge and just grabbed some things and started what I thought was going to be some grilled chicken with pasta and a quick sauce. I ended up with soup. This is how Chunky Tomato Chicken Soup was born. I sauteed garlic, onions, red peppers, yellow peppers, green peppers and mushrooms inolive oil and once the diced onion has become translucent and ad a can of diced tomatoes. Then I spiced it up with Salt, Pepper, Ground Red Pepper, Basil, Oregano, and Parsley. This is where I generally stop and allow the water to reduce and call it my chunky tomato sauce for pasta. But this time I thought what if I just through it all together add a little water and call it soup. So I poured my cooked macaroni pasta, diced grilled chicken and tomato sauce concoction together, added water and called it soup. It was delicious. I would change out the pasta to Orzo, mini shell or something smaller. I would also have added a can of tomato sauce as a thickener. So I am going to write out a recipe below but I recommend you play with it and make it your own. I am considering it a starter to what might become a damn good soup. Also for those of you counting points.... The recipe below came out to 14.5 points and you can easily get 2 enormous bowls out of it. (probably 4 cups of soup). So 3 good sized bowls as well. As always calculate your points and let me know if I am WAAAAY off.

Chunky Tomato Chicken Soup

1 1/2 Tbs Olive Oil
1/4 cup Green Pepper
1/4 cup Yellow Pepper
1/4 cup Red Pepper
1/4 cup Onion
4 cloves Garlic (to ward of vampires)
1 can Diced Tomatoes
2 tsp Basil (why 2, because it is delicious)
1 tsp Oregano
1 tsp Parsley
1/2 tsp Ground Red Pepper (Oh put it in you wus)
Salt and Black Pepper to taste

4 oz cooked - Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast
1/2 cup uncooked pasta (macaroni is what the points are based on)

Saute Onions, garlic, and peppers in olive oil. Once onions are translucent add diced tomatoes. Add enough water the cook pasta and bring to a boil. Add pasta and get to cooking your chicken. I cook my on the George Foreman grill but you could cook it in a pan with cooking spray. Once your chicken is done but still nice and moist dice it and add it to your soup. Let you pasta cook until done and continue to boil until you get the consistency you want.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Weigh In - Good News

As I have said before I should not try to predict these things. I thought this would be a lousy week. I thought that I would maybe lose 1 lb is anything. Well the scale told me I had lost 2.2 for a grand total of 35 lbs even. I am honestly pretty excited. It is hard to imagine walking around with a 35 lb suit on all day every day and yet just about 45 days ago I was. This is a process that I thought to be impossible before I began. I figured that I would never shed the weight. I am so thankful to all those people who recommended weight watchers. My girlfriend Carrie was probably the first and I resisted for a considerable time. I feel extremely comfortable with my decision at that point. I have talked to others who are doing different diets or who are going in to surgery for weight loss. All I can say to all of those who are reading this who are in the same battle that I am in is this: No matter what you are doing, you are making steps to become healthier and that is the most important thing. I will gladly share my experiences with people but I would not want to push someone one way or another. While I had people telling me about weight watchers I came to the decision to go there completely on my own. I am certain that if I had been completely influenced by someone else I would have failed already. I say this because I think anyone in this battle needs to decide for themselves. If Nutrisystem motivates them then that will work for them. For me it was weight watchers. I wish anyone out there reading this the best. Health and Happiness for all! See you all later in the week.

Weigh in tonight

Well I am switching days and I have a weigh in tonight. I am not particularly confident that I will be successful this week. Partially because I will have only 4 full days and I only worked out for 2 of them. Also because I do not feel like I ate particularly well over the weekend. I stayed within my points so I guess we will just see. I might be wrong and I hope I am. Any loss will be a triumph. Stay tuned...

Monday, March 3, 2008

New Feature - Food Find - Breakfast Turkey Sausage Roll

Let me start this short blog with saying that I love sausage. Particularly breakfast sausage. So on a mission to live this healthier lifestyle I have been looking for substitutes. I had read about a turkey breakfast sausage in another blog somewhere down the line and was skeptical. Well I was wrong! Sunday morning I made veggie omelets with a side of sausage. DELICIOUS! I figured the points on this little treat and it came out to 2 pts if you make sausages the are 2.5 oz each. Now that is a big sausage so I figure mine were half that size for a manageable 1 point each. I have never mentioned this but you should always run your own point calculation to make sure that I am not completely wrong. And for crying out loud if I am let me know. So hopefully this will be an ongoing feature on the blog, if not, the first and last will at least be a quality entry.