Archive for January 2011

Veggie Dish #4 – Roast Asparagus

Part of my plan in eating a new veggie dish (not necessarily new vegetable) was too experiment with things I don’t normally eat.

There are some vegetables that I love and would eat daily. I think tomatoes and cucumbers are proof that God loves us. Conversely, I think that asparagus and brussels sprouts are proof that evil still exists in the world.

I tried brussels sprouts last week and made them edible. Can I do the same for asparagus? I recently tried to find out, and I did so by finding the simplest roasting method I have ever heard.

It seriously takes about four minutes total to fix this dish, and that includes washing the vegetables AND the baking time. So for Veggie Dish #4, I present to you Roast Asparagus.

To start off with, wash the asparagus and cut (or break) off the ends. Place on a sheet of aluminum foil.

Drizzle a little olive oil on, roll them around to get them all covered, and sprinkle with parmesan cheese.

Place in the oven under the broiler on High for three minutes.

That’s it.

Serve. Eat.

So what’s the verdict? Tina loves it. This is her new favorite way to eat asparagus.

The same can be said of me, too. This is my favorite way to eat asparagus as well. Would I eat this of my own volition again? Only for the health benefits, because the taste is just acceptable. Asparagus just has a bitter, biting taste that I don’t care for.

Oh, and a quick tip – make sure you roast it all the way through. Asparagus that has not been cooked all the way through is even more bitter. The next dish (later this week) is a little different than what I’ve cooked previously, so stay tuned.

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A Yoga Weigh-In

Quick, quick post today, mostly because if it’s a long post, I’ll just end up bitching for a really long time.

Today has largely sucked. I have eye problems. The doctor called it a corneal infection and irisitis or something else that sounds made up, but all I know is that I’ve spent $105 so far on two office visit and eye drops that make the back of my throat taste bad.

No, I swear I’m not drinking them, but apparently, the taste of them somehow ends up from my eyes in my throat. Six times a day. And I’ve got blurry vision.

And to put the icing on the cake of suck, I got a traffic citation this morning for not coming to a full stop at a stop sign. And then when he saw my POS car, he added another $20 to the ticket because my windshield is cracked.

I hate hypocrites. Unless that cop has always come to a complete and full stop at every stop sign he has ever encountered, he is a hypocrite for giving me a traffic ticket.

Oh, and the best part of this story? It’s in a quiet neighborhood where the stop sign doesn’t even need to be and you can clearly see that no one is coming from a good half mile away. Frankly, even a rolling stop is pretty freaking generous. I know this neighborhood is quiet because it is MY neighborhood. I was literally pulled over in my driveway. I’m going to call the County Attorney on Monday morning and see if I can get this ticket put on the shelf. I’d be okay with a ticket if my actions could have caused harm to someone else. I was not speeding irresponsibly. I did not speed through a stop sign in a location where you can’t see around a corner or there is anyway anything could dart out in front of you.

Hate hypocrisy. This is why God has never given me super brain powers, because if he had, there would be a LOT of people lying around in bloody chunks.

Oh, and the kicker? For the past three days and about another week more, I can’t work out. Apparently, any type of strain could exacerbate the cloud of infection currently living in my head.

So, in an attempt to make this NOT a complete and utter bitch fest, I’m going to concentrate only on good things from here on out.

To start off with, here are some good things in the world.

You probably didn’t get a traffic citation today. I’m happy for you. Truly I am. Unless you are a cop. And if so, please reference the explosion picture above.

I have a lot of friends and loved ones who care about me. Huge bonus there.

I have a roof over my head. I pay a mortgage on said roof, but I’m much happier paying a mortgage than paying rent. At least I’m building equity.

I never have to worry about where my next meal is coming from.

I never have to go to bed hungry.

I never have to worry about having clean drinking water.

I have a job. That I enjoy. With people I enjoy. Eh, let’s be honest. I freaking love my job! Do wish it paid more, but I’d probably think that if I was that loser who invented Facebook. (BTW, friend me on Facebook! The link is on my main blog page.)

I’m married to my best friend.

I have four animals who are, despite being immensely irritating, immensely entertaining. Oh, and we have determined that Malcolm’s (one of our dogs) entirely vocabulary consists of four words. Eat, speak, sit, and poop.

Even if I can’t get my citation put on the shelf, I will come up with the money to pay it.

My life is good. I just have to keep reminding myself that.

Oh, and this is a Yoga Weigh-in, because while I can’t do strenuous exercise, I REFUSE to do nothing. This is Yoga Week.

January 28, 2011
Last Week’s Weight: 359.0
Today’s Weight: 358.1
Change from All-Time High: -44.7 pounds
Change from Last Week: -0.9 pounds

It isn’t amazing, but I’ll take it. And this next week will be a nice experiment to see if I can lose weight without spending hardcore time in the gym. Instead, I’ll be relaxing at home with a huge mass of eye infection on the right side of my head, doing yoga.

And just to leave this post on a high funny note, here are four of the funniest meme I have ever seen.

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Veggie Dish #3 – Spicy Brussels Sprouts

I love some vegetables. I like a lot more. I tolerate a few. And I despise a handful.

Brussels sprouts falls in the last category. I hate them. I just think they taste bitter and strong.

Someone recently suggested to me that the problem could be in the way I cook them, so I decided, since I am making 2011 the Year of New Vegetable Dishes, I would tackle Brussels Sprouts.

I found a recipe at Epicurious, and I modified it quite a bit to suit both my tastes and what I had on hand in the kitchen.

To start off with, I washed my sprouts, cut off the end, and split them in half.

This recipe called for a bit of oil, but rather than olive oil, I decided to use truffle oil. No particular reason – I’m sure olive oil would have worked just as well.

I poured a bit of oil in a pan and tossed in a tablespoon of butter. I probably should have measured them, but I did not.

While the oil was warming and the butter was melting, I tossed some cayenne pepper and garlic powder into the pan.

As soon as my butter melted, I stirred up and let simmer for just a few moments.

I then tossed the brussels sprouts into the pan and let cook for about ten minutes, occasionally poking at it with a wooden spoon. Seriously. That was it until they turned nicely browned in spots.

The taste verdict? Not bad! I was pleasantly surprised. The garlic and cayenne pepper, (plus the oil and butter, I’m sure), made these much better than any other method I’ve ever tried to eat them. I wouldn’t call them my favorite vegetable, but if I ever find brussels sprouts cheap, I’d definitely be open to making these again.

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An Always in Training Weigh-in

On Sunday, I wrote about how I had just had a major breakthrough. It was mental, not physical.

I didn’t discover the magic wand for weight loss.

I didn’t discover the warp zone to skinny.

But I did find something FOR ME that makes everything click into place.

I truly believe that’s part of a healthy weight loss journey. It isn’t about losing weight. We all know how to do that, even if we all have slightly different theories. Some people say that a calorie is a calorie, whether it comes from carrots or chocolate. I don’t agree. Some people say that you can never splurge. I don’t agree. I subscribe to a middle-ground approach, where you SHOULD eat as healthy as you possibly can but the occasional treat is acceptable.

It isn’t even about exercise, although that certainly plays a big role. It’s pretty much proven that losing weight is 90% diet and 10% exercise. I’m exercising to make me healthier, much for the same reason I try to eat at least 80% of my food as healthy choices.. I know I can lose weight without exercising, but I don’t want to deal with the excess “excess skin” that will come without lifting weights and doing cardio.

So, if it isn’t about diet and it isn’t about exercise, what on Earth have I found that is a crucial element of every weight loss success story?

The mental aspect. The breakthrough. The trigger. The event.

Whatever it is, I have it. Some people have it when they have a child and realize they have more to live for than themselves. (Please note: we are NOT having a baby yet.)

Some people have it when they come to terms with abuse from their childhood or they finally combat self-defeating behaviors.

I had an excellent childhood. I wasn’t abused. I’ve certainly been self-destructive, though, and a few years ago, I came to terms with that.

So why am I still fat?

In the words of Dr. Phil, being fat was working for me.

If I am fat, I cannot fail because I’m not even going to try.

No more.

I’ve come to realize that the event isn’t just ONE event. For me, at least, it has to always be something. I have to have something concrete to plan for, to look forward to, to train for…

Before I met Tina, I wanted to lose weight so I could find a great girl to spend my life with.

While I was engaged, I wanted to lose weight so I’d look good at my wedding.

Now what? I want to be healthy and thin so I can be a good dad, obviously, but that’s easily several years off.

But I need to be training for something. So that’s how I’m viewing this journey now.


Always. Every day. Every workout, I am in training. I’m in training to save the world, so I better get stronger at each bench press I do. I’m in training to become a great dad, so I better push a little harder on the elliptical. I’m in training to become a personal trainer, so I better try a little harder at my food choices.

Always in training.

The mental aspect of it is a great deal of fun. Whenever I’m lifting weights, I just pick something random that I’m in training for. I’m in training to be the next Power Ranger, and if I can complete this weight workout with my heart rate dropping out of a good fat burning zone, too, then I will definitely be picked to wear the blue armor next.

I’m in training to be a personal trainer, so if I want to make a little extra income by helping others lose weight, then I had better put that cookie down and pick up an apple instead.

It’s honestly fun, and for me and my varied mental mind games I play with myself all day long, it’s a big help.

And therefore, this is an Always in Training Weigh-in.

As I said on Sunday, I’m switching to Friday. Friday weigh-ins are what I did last year, and I just enjoy them more.

January 21, 2011
Last Week’s Weight: 360.7
Today’s Weight: 359.0
Change from All-Time High: -43.8 pounds
Change from Last Week: -1.7 pounds

Goodbye, 360s. I won’t miss you. I may not break 350 by February 1st like I had planned (although I have really stepped up my weight workouts this past week in a BIG way), but I’m still losing no matter what.

What are you in training for?

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Please watch out for goalies…

This is just a real quick post explaining that I am moving my weigh-in days back to Friday.

Friday has always been my favorite day of the week. Aside from the fact that more people are brutally murdered at summer camps on Friday than any other day of the week, Friday means the beginning of the weekend.

Jason Voorhees is a BIG fan of Fridays, too!

I am not doing this because I think last week was spectacularly bad and I need a few more to sweat off a few more ounces.

I am doing this because Sunday doesn’t feel right as a weigh-in day. On Sunday, Tina and I are both off from work, we have church, we have things to do around the house, both practical (such as cleaning our mess of a garage) and personal (such as cuddling up to watch a Netflix movie we’ve kept putting off so we can put it in the mail Monday morning), and I just don’t always want to write a weigh-in blog post on Sunday.

I like to put time and thought into those, and frankly, I don’t always have that in me. So I’m moving back to Friday.

There are plans in the works for me to post later this week. It is the last week before the semester starts back in earnest, so I’m sure I’ll be pretty busy this week. Still, I have plans for a Biggest Loser post on Wednesday night, and I’ll also post about our newest veggie meal sometime this week.

Just now that I am still working out and I am still following my diet. I have discovered that I definitely need to up the amount of non-processed foods in my diet, but I’ll talk about that in more depth on Friday.

Friday’s post is going to be an exciting one for me. I don’t know if I’ll post huge numbers, but I had a mental breakthrough this past weekend that is definitely going to pay dividends for me in both weight loss and general health, physical and mental.

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12-31-13 - 412.0
1-3-14 - 407.0 (-5.0 pounds total)