Sunday, June 30, 2013

It's been a few days...

I haven't posted in a while because the last few days have been really busy. My son turned one on Friday and we celebrated by going to the park and letting him tear into a few presents. Then on Saturday we celebrated his birthday with the family. Of course there was cake.

I had also got depressed on Saturday because my wife received a call about our opossum friend. He didn't make it. There was too much internal bruising.

I haven't worked out at all this weekend and I feel like I'm slipping off into quitting altogether. I need to do something drastic to drop kick me back into this thing or I'm afraid I will be lost again, doomed to repeat this process in another 6 months with another 20 pounds added to me. I'm not my own friend. I'm the enemy. The competition isn't out there, it isn't with cover models, it isn't with the infomercial jocks, it's certainly not with anyone I pass on the street. The only competition I have is with me.

It's too difficult to put into words what I'm feeling. It's as if there are two halves of me. One is my conscious self that wants to get into shape and the other is a subconscious self that really likes cheeseburgers and pizza. Lets go Freudian and call them the super ego and id, respectively. What I need to do is bash the id into submission with all the fitness knowledge and psychology I know. I need to do it swiftly and mercilessly because it will fight back. I need to muster all the discipline I have, exhausting every reserve to conquer this beast. It's will jeapordizes the safety and security of my wife and my son. It threatens my own life and for this it must be vanquished....Oh God, I'm going to war!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

A Can Do Attitude

Last night was family night where I get to watch a bunch of kids while their parents are in a support group for parents with problem children. Anyway, we went out to the playground and let them loose. I tried to keep up, I really did, but they were too much for me. One child I can only describe as a pit bull puppy. He was climbing, swinging, jumping, sprinting, smacking things out of coworkers hands and I realized something. I want to do all those things he can do. I want to be able to sprint wildly, climb and flip on the monkey bars, pull myself up onto the narrowest ledges and jump off heights without fearing that I will snap my shins upon impact with the ground.

I've been looking at things with a "how much" attitude. How much do I eat, how much do I workout, how much do I weigh? What I need is to get away from this line of thinking and start thinking about what I can do. I want to say I can do 20 pull-ups. I want to say I can do a marathon; that I can do sprints and hurdles and swinging from monkey bars. Thinking like this will end the constant feelings of not being good enough from imperfect dieting, pathetic weigh ins, and skipped workouts. Instead each day will be a new challenge to see what I can do. Can I bang out five more push-ups, can I run just a quarter mile more? I have until the fourth Tuesday of next month for the next family night to be able to do more than I can today. Here's to the new challenge!

In other news I accomplished a math goal! I can do fractions and decimals better.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Week 4 begins

I weighed in this morning at 213.0 lbs. That is a loss of 3.3 pounds from the end of week 2 where I had gained weight that week. The biggest success though is that my current weight it 0.8 lbs from the end of week 1 so I am improving though it's frustrating knowing that I'm starting my fourth week and have only managed to lose a total of 4.2 lbs. I have to remind myself though that an average of one pound a week is healthy and even though I want to lose a lot of weight very fast that losing it gradually is better in the long run. This journey is about developing new habits for life. It's about being more active for the next 80 years to 100 years and not about getting in shape for one summer only to go back to old ways. When I look at it this way its ok to lose very little each week. A loss of one pound a week will yield 52 pounds lost in a year and whats a year compared to the rest of your life?

I'm doing good and slowly I'll keep getting better.

In other news (and this could be graphic, so fair warning) I was out running this morning and came across a opposum on the side of the road that had been hit by a car. On my way back I heard a small sneezing sound coming from the opposum. I started looking for where the sound was coming from thinking that the opposum was still alive or that one of it's organs nearby was still beating. It took a while for me to make sense of the situation but when I did I realized that that was no organ; it was a baby opposum crying for help in the street. I sprinted home and got a container and some socks to put him in. The little thing was no more than 3 inches long and still blind to the world.

My wife and I called around to find someone who could help it. We placed the opposum in a box with some more fabric and set it on a low to warm heating pad so that it could stay warm. Finally a friend of Felicia's said to check out Wild Care

I rushed out and got there as soon as they opened where they assured me that he or she would be fine. They were confident that the little opposum would be able to be bottle fed and they gave me a tracking number to check back on how the baby is doing! We can't wait to check back :)

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Day 19 & 20

Yesterday I ran 1.4 miles and stopped by the church to do five 40 yard sprints in their parking lot. I  had gotten up at 6 like planned (the kid actually woke me 10 minutes till six). Today I woke at 6:30 and ran 2 miles! (well, I ran for 1 mile straight and walked/ran the rest), then back to the church parking lot for another five sprints.

Felicia and I followed up this morning with a small run to the farmer's market where I got some great produce for some corn salad and some chocolate basil for bruschetta.

 I plan on making the baguette myself. Everyday I seem to be eating better. Tonight will be dinner with the parents at La Baguette and with it great temptations.

I've also started working on fractions & decimals as part of my campaign to get better at math. 

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Day 18

Get up at six (check); Don't hit snooze (check); "move" for 10 minutes (This morning I ran from my home to the grocery store down the street. Round trip that's a total of 1.4 miles. Then stopped off at the church parking lot for some mountain climbers, power jacks, and pushups, so...check); eat breakfast (check). I've done everything I said I was going to do this morning; now I just need to finish the day with some pushups and I'll have hit every goal I set for today.

Little goals, this may be the key to success. Pair that with the positive attitude and support of people around you and you have a winning formula. I'm keeping it simple. Nothing good will come from overwhelming yourself. You'll only shut down and resort to bad habits. We're making good habits here.

I've created a new page! Over there ----->
It covers some of the small non-fitness related goals I have. Little things like taking steps to learn Spanish, bake some breads, and become smarter. I have a language learning app I'm using for Spanish. I'll be using the Bread Baker's Apprentice for breads (I've made a few before from here and they've been awesome).

Then I'm going to use Khan Academy to get better at math. Math has always been something that was a bit mysterious and challenging for me so I feel it's perfect to try and conquer now. I'm starting with fractions (adding them, muliplying them, etc) and I hope to work my way up to more and more challenging stuff. We'll see.

I'm feeling good. This is good. :)

Wednesday, June 19, 2013


I'm going to be turning 30 at the end of this year and I've made so many goals in my life but have accomplished so very few. It's strange that I take 30 to be some magical number that saddens me because of all the things I didn't do. I'm still too young to be full of regret and yet I feel as though I didn't get the most out of my twenties. I want to stay positive though. I've married a beautiful woman and had a pretty awesome little boy. I graduated college and have been blessed enough to work in my field; a job that I absolutley love (though I hate the pay--alas, that's the way it goes). I complain that I don't get to travel much yet I've lived in some pretty cool places and visited some others. Sure, I want to go to Europe and Japan but that's not important right now.

Right now, I'm working on my health. I'm working on being a better father and husband. I'm working to gain some love for life back into me. It's the overall transformation I'm shooting for. I want a lot of things, I'm a dreamer and I always have been. I want to go back to school and get my Masters. I still want to travel. I want to bake breads and be an awesome artisan baker. I want to learn a new language (or 2 or 3 or 10!). I want to be better at math (because it's the bane of so many's existence). I want to be financially independent or at least more stable. I want to read more, write more. I'd love to write a book. I want to write better poetry. I want to be more spiritual (though I'm not sure what that really means for me). I want to be better dressed. I want to go to more plays and musicals. This is just the start of the things I want. I'm tired of dreaming; I want to start living.

Smaller Steps (Day 17)

I think the goals I have are too grand, too long-term. I need to make some smaller goals, something that can be accomplished in a very short term.

Making daily goals would be too hectic--the constant updating and documenting would be overwhelming.
A weekly goal would be nice. Hmmm...let's see.

Small goal 1
Get up every morning for one week at 6:00 a.m. without hitting the snooze.

Small goal 2
Don't skip breakfast for one week.

Small goal 3
"Move" for at least 10 minutes straight each morning

Small goal 4
Finish the day with 3 sets of 10 pushups

Hopefully I didn't just overwhelm myself. To put the four goals more simply I will say: "For one week I will start the morning at 6:00 a.m, not hit snooze, then move actively for at least 10 minutes straight followed by breakfast. At night I'll do some pushups."

I encourage clients all day long to make small, manageable and realisitc goals then create actions steps toward those goals. I'm good at this; I just need to take my own advice.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Week 2 end (Day 15)

This was my weight this morning: 216.3 pounds. That's 2.5 pounds gained. I'm saddened by this but my resolve is not broken. I have nothing more to say. I can and will do better.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Happy Father's Day! (Day 14)

Oh how I ate horribly. The frozen custard place was giving away free concretes to dads, I made my father a pizza, and my wife got me a father's day cookie cake.

The weekend was a bust regarding working out but I want to remain positive. I had a good weekend. We bought another car and the kid is starting to walk. Life is stressful and I turn to food to ease that stress--I'm not making excuses, I'm just identifying a trigger. It's ok though, the stress will pass and tomorrow I can get back on my diet. I can start working out again. It's always a new day and it's always a new beginning.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Day 12

I've watched a lot of the Biggest Loser and one thing I've learned is to not expect much from your second week. There is a curse upon it where people just don't lose that much weight at the second weigh-in. It's most likely because of the huge numbers people lose in the first week (as much as 20 or 30 pounds!). However, at the second weigh-in people may only lose 1 or 2 pounds, lose nothing, or even gain weight. If someone so big who is working out all day, every day, with great trainers, a fully stocked kitchen and nutritionists, getting a full nights rest, and not tempted by home or the stresses of work and family can only drop 1 or 2 pounds then what chance do I have in the second week!? I who has eaten poorly, exercised irregularly, and slept dismally? It doesn't look good for me. I have 2 days left until the end of week 2 and I'll be happy no matter what the scale says because week 2 just sucks. What's important is that I strengthen my good habits, overcome my poor eating patterns, and gain some wisdom to carry me the rest of these 90 days.

Small steps. Small small steps.

Over the past 12 days I have gradually got into the habit of waking up early to work out, I have gradually been more cautious in what I eat, and I've managed to stretch out my workouts from standing there for 5 minutes barely moving to being active for at least 20 out of 30 mintues. I've also become more active in the evening (if only by a little bit).

It's ok to only work out once or twice week 1 and for 10 minutes; to only eat right 3 meals of 21. Then week 2 work out 3-4 times for 20 minutes, eating right 10 of 21 meals. Week 3 working out 5 times for 30 minutes at moderate intensity and eating right 15 of 21 meals. Week 4: work out 6x @ 45 minutes, eating 20 perfect meals. Week 5: workout 6x @ 1 hour, relatively high intensity, still eating perfect....and on and on, better and better each week.

I'm building myself up like a freight train; slowly chugging along at first but gaining speed until I'm roaring down the tracks with nothing able to stop me.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

A Reflection

I was at the farmer's market today and saw someone wearing a Color Me Rad t-shirt. That is one of those 5k's that shoot paint at you as you run so that you come out like a powdering rainbow afterwards. I was signed up to go. I signed up long before so that I could train. Days and then weeks went by and I didn't train, I didn't even try. When race day came I chickened out. I missed out on an amazing experience that I hope comes around again. When my dad asked if I did the race I told him that I didn't and I made up all these excuses like that we didn't have any milk to leave for Zachary and that it was just too early, and other dumb stuff. He just said that it was too bad and that was that, there was no more talking about it. He seemed ok with me not doing the run but I know it hurt him. I hurt him and I hurt myself with that failure. I can't keep doing this to myself.

Day 10 & Another Last Bad Meal

Last night Felicia and I had pizza (BBQ Chicken & Bacon with cheesy stuffed bread from Dominoes). We swear that it is our last bad meal even though there have been two other times this round (and countless others in months past). Tonight we indulged in Gyro's. This is our last bad meal. I'm starting to think that having one more great tasting meal is a really bad thing. It doesn't help. If I have to give advice to other people about starting a nutrition program I would say DO NOT have one last hurrah; just jump straight into eating right. The second piece of advice I'd give (I'm learning fast, really I am, even though it might not seem like it) is to have a plan on what you're going to eat. Having a plan will prevent you (I still need to test this) from getting lazy and straying from your diet. Well, now I just need to take my own advice.

I got out and exercised this morning. It's the second real exercise since having started this program ten days ago. I ran the half mile to the church then did some parking lot suicides followed by burpees and then box jumps onto a bench. I ran/walked the half mile home. It was a decent 30 minute workout. Then tonight I lifted some light weights. So, despite what I ate today was a good day.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Day 9

I got up with my son crying at 5:50 a.m. this morning and took that as a cue to go for a run. I ran a half mile down to a local church and did some pushups and burpees in thier parking lot then ran/walked the half mile back. This small little jont took me 30 minutes to complete. That's pathetic. From henceforth I shall make it a goal to complete a mile run in under 10 minutes. Also I want to be able to run longer distances. I'd like to be able to run 5 miles. Here is my second goal I am making: I want to run from my home to here...

From Google street view
This is at Campus Corner at the University of Oklahoma. It's roughly 2.5 miles from my home so if I can make it here then I'll have gone 5 miles roundtrip. By the end of these 90 days I WILL make it there. 

Monday, June 10, 2013

Week 2 Begins (day 8)

Week one was a sorry excuse for the start of a workout program. Week two isn't fairing any better. Already I have feasted on chips and ice cream. Sure, lunch and dinner were healthy but that doesn't mean anything when you're snacking late at night. I skipped a workout too. Motivation is hard. I want to stick a needle into some little over achiever and suck out all the mojo then inject it straight into my brain or heart or wherever it needs to go.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Last Bad Meal (again!)

I was suppose to eat good tonight. I was suppose to work out too. Instead I overloaded myself on a juicy burger from The Garage (a local bar downtown with amazing burgers). This is the Bacon Avocado Ranch which I paired with Parmesan Garlic Fries.

I'm saying this is my last bad meal. I've already attempted to say this  once before and by the track record I've failed miserably. Hopefully this time will be different. I'm so addicted to good food. It doesn't seem fair.

Day 6 & 7

The weekend is here and though it has been fun and relaxing I haven't done much in the way of working out or eating right. Yesterday Felicia and I went to see the Purge at the Warren Theater. They have a balcony which serves food during the movie. I ordered a cocktail and a very cheesy chicken quesadilla followed by a turkey, cranberry and brie sandwich with fries.

At Plaza Towers Elementary School

After the movie we went to check out the tornado devastation around Plaza Tower's Elementary School. Felicia got a T-shirt. I got to check out a clients old home which, amazingly, still stood with major damage but it wasn't wiped clean off the foundation like their neighbors houses.

Something needs to give. I'd be lucky if I lost a pound this week. Honestly, I feel as though I may have gained weight. Zachary woke up at 6:00 a.m. this morning and I'm kicking myself for not using that opportunity to go for a run. Instead, I went back to bed for another hour and a half. There are 83 days left in this journey and I need to make the most of each and every one.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Day 5

Today was a decent day. I woke up early (only hitting the snooze once) and got outside for a short run. Stopped off in a local church parking lot and did some power jumps, pushups, mountain climbers, and high knees, then ran/walked back home.

I didn't eat good today. Felicia and I had Red Baron pizza and some custard from a local place down the street. That's the problem with Oklahoma. There are too many food options. When we visit family in Pennsylvania or in Florida there aren't half the options there are here. Within one mile of our home there are 3 Mexican restaurants, 4 Asian Restaurants, a doughnut shop, McDonalds, KFC, Raising Cains, Burger King, Sonic Drive-In, the custard place, 3 pizza places, Long John Silvers, a BBQ place, a cookie shop, a cafe, 3 sub sandwich places, and a Jamba Juice. All but 2 of those places I just listed exist on the same intersection. It's ridiculous!

I finished the day with some weight lifting. Mostly dumbbell curls and triceps extensions. It won't counteract the calories I took in but at least it's something active. Here's to the weekend!


Reasons to get healthy

Usually you can find me slumped on the floor with the ipad or laying about watching some TV or a movie or even playing a few hours worth of video games. This habit of laziness coupled with poor eating habits is what has made me fat. It's also made me a lot of other things. I snore horribly loud. I suffer from acid reflux which sometimes gets so bad at night that it wakes me up, gagging for air, and eventually throwing up. My back hurts after laying flat on it or on my stomach. Felicia says it might be because of my large gut pressing on things. I have little to no energy at the end of the day. My flexibility (which was pretty impressive 10 years ago) is at a level so low I can barely bend over to touch my knees without feeling a burn in my legs, back, or sides.

Besides what I am affected by currently, there are a host of concerns that may appear in the future; notably, diabetes and heart disease. But despite all that there is one big reason for me to get healthy, this guy...

That's my son. He's almost a year old and getting more active by the day. The biggest reason to get healthy it to be there for him. I want to be active and play outdoors, sports, play fighting, etc with him. I don't want him to suffer through childhood watching his father get sick from things I should have controlled. I want him to have a good example of how to have healthy habits and control your cravings. And most of all I don't want to leave him because I was too stupid and lazy to have saved my life. Every other reason to lose weight is superficial to this.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Day 4

Well, I slept in this morning.

I had my shoes, socks, shorts, and shirt waiting for me. The weather was beautiful. I was semi-well rested. And I didn't hear the alarm clock go off. Four days have passed and I haven't had a good workout yet. Something needs to change. I need a swift kick in the butt. I'm going to work out tonight. This is what I'm going to force myself to do:

Super Set ONE
Pushups: 5 x 10
Burpees: 5 x 5

Super Set TWO
Goblet Squat: 3 x 10
Dumbbell Curl to Overhead Press: 3 x 10

Dumbbell Twenty Ones: 1x

 UPDATE: I did this!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Day 3

The third day has passed and I managed to exercise a little bit more than yesterday. I think the problem is that when I wake up I find it harder to get dressed and put my shoes on than it is to simply roll back into bed and sleep another half hour. I'm going to do a little experiment. I'm going to put my shorts, socks, shoes, and t-shirt right beside my bed so that when I wake up I won't have to go looking for anything. The next step will be getting outside. The last few mornings there have been thunderstorms that have kept me from going out. Tomorrow morning should be dry, mildly warm, and as long as I'm prepared I will have no excuse but to do some hard training.

I have to remind myself that regardless of how well or how horribly I stick to my diet and exercise that today is still day 3. Day 90 will come no matter how I do and once this is all over I can either be the man I want to be or I can be the same as I am today. I make that choice. I decide if I want to change or stay the same. It's a choice that I make every single morning and through my actions during the day. What I need to get better at is being more aware of the decisions I make.

BTW, I skipped breakfast again. Ate a healthy lunch and then had Chick-fil-a for dinner including a cookies and cream shake, and later a blue coconut slush from Sonic.  

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Day 2 & A Comment on Training

Day 2 and I still haven't even begun to work out. I mean, I threw some punches into the air and did some small squats for about 10 minutes this morning but that was it. I find it difficult to get up when the alarm goes off. I find it just as difficult to move in the morning. This morning was particularly difficult for some reason. I stood there in front of the TV and sort of dozed off while standing. Then it was time to get ready for work.

Do I need a gym membership? I don't believe so. There is nothing in the gym that I cannot do on my own in the real world. Why run on a treadmill when the world is free to traverse? Why use machines to work on a crazy number of tiny isolated muscles when I can push, climb, and pull heavy objects in nature? When I think of the gym versus no gym I picture Rocky IV. Busting ass in a soviet barn, pulling rocks on chains, plowing snow, chopping wood, doing situps from rafters. Just the thought of it spikes my testosterone!

But there are mornings like this one, where it's raining outside and I'm just in too much of a slump to get moving. Surely a gym would motivate me. Surely I would get some work done. If I didn't go to a gym then what? There are a number of at home workout programs that promise amazing results. If the gym isn't for me then maybe one of them are? I've seen the infomercials for Insanity, P90X, TurboJam, Rockin Body, Asylum, Shakeology, JNLFusion, and DeltaFit. But do I need a program to follow at home? Yes, but I don't think it has to be one of these programs. I should be able to get the same results if I put forth the same intensity and this I believe is where the problem is: I'm not intense enough. Hell, right now my intensity is at 0 and I need to be at 11. Buying into a program won't correct this problem. I can give up easily either way.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Day 1

Today is officially Day ONE of my 90 day challenge to lose weight.

Here is how the breakdown should go:
Day 1: June 3rd: 217 lbs
Day 30: July 2nd: 198 lbs
Day 60: August 1st: 182 lbs
Day 90: August 31st: 165 lbs

Of course this timeline is very optimistic and I'll be lucky to even lose half the weight I plan to in that amount of time. Still, this is the goal and I will bust my ass to accomplish it.

Every transformation story needs a before picture. This is so embarrassing but necessary: here are my before pictures...

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Last Bad Meal

Homemade Blueberry Sauce!
Today I start eating right. Today I will begin to eat light, healthy, nutrient rich foods. But before this I have to have my last bad meal. Everyone should be able to have one last night of extravagance, full of fatty and sugary foods. Unfortunately, every meal seems to be my "last bad meal". I wish that today I could have started eating right. I wish I could have said that the margarita queso chicken and shrimp from Applebee's with the sampler trio of beer cheese dip and pretzel sticks, BBQ boneless wings, sliders and fries from last night would have been my last horrible meal. I also wish I didn't start out the morning with a stack of pancakes and blueberry sauce, followed by snacking on brownie fudge ice cream and oatmeal raisin cookies, then chase that with lunch at McDonald's of three cheeseburgers and fries. I'll most likely end the day with some more ice cream and pizza. Felicia says we are addicted to bad food. That we have an eating disorder. I'm inclined to think this is true. How can we overcome this disgusting dependence on something we are utterly and truly dependent on?