I have, for so long, wanted to be a blogger, and frankly… I just find myself falling farther and farther away from that world.
I’m not closing this blog, but I think I am formally announcing today what it has unofficially been for years now. This is basically my tiny little corner of the internet and it’s not much more than a slightly-public personal journal.
I still welcome comments, but I’m not going to say that I’ll blog more than once a month or make any bold proclamations that I’m about to revitalize and start blogging regularly! We’ll see what happens. I’ll try to update my weight at least once a month.
In September, I weighed in at 399.8. On October 1st, I got on the scale and it said:
That’s a loss of 7.2 pounds in a month. Not great, but I don’t consider that terrible by any means. I am down 32.8 pounds from my heaviest. Woo hoo!
My weight loss is slow, but at least I am actually losing, for the first time in what feels like forever.
My doctoral work is keeping me so much busier than I ever would have expected.
I am anticipating graduating in December 2016. While that sounds like forever away, I know (in doc school terms), it’s right around the corner. I’m lucky in that my 2nd Master’s degree is letting me count 12 hours toward my program requirements. (And let me also say – thank goodness for free tuition. While the doc program fees aren’t covered by my tuition waiver, the tuition itself is. I can’t complain about getting this degree for roughly $35,000 cheaper than most.)
I’m not exercising as much as I’d like, but thank God for my lovely wife Tina who has become quite the expert paleo chef! Before this semester (Research I, y’all… it’s no joke), I was the family chef, but she has happily taken that task over for me and is doing an amazing job of it.
While we are not 100% primal or paleo, I do have to admit – it’s not as hard as I thought it would be once I got into it.
I hate when I read on paleo websites people say things like, “And I haven’t craved bread or sugar since!”
No, I still want sugar, but the difference for me now is… the cravings are bearable and beatable. I can overcome them, much more easily than I used to.
I also have no delusions that this is anything other than a calorie trick. I’m sure we’re feeling much more satisfied eating protein and fats than we were more carbs, but either way, we’re dropping. (And we’re also eating WAY more veggies than ever before, so that has to be good for us. I still hate Brussels sprouts, though. I’m pretty sure they’re poison.) And incidentally, Tina is also losing weight as well.
It’s funny; we’re feeding our son pretty much the same thing we eat, although he’s pretty small, and we’re trying to get him to gain weight. (He’s 85% percentile for height but only 20% percentile for weight. How I had a skinny kid… I’ll never know.) The doctor isn’t concerned with his weight, though, because he is healthy and well proportioned. It’s funny, though, and it kind of shocks me at how ridiculously obvious this is.
He eats whatever we eat. A few nights ago, we had roasted broccoli with dinner. He was chowing down like it was candy, and I strongly suspect it was because he saw his mom and dad eating it.
I have to eat well and lose weight to keep my kid healthy, if for no other reason.
I need to force in more time for exercise. But I’m also trying to keep some fun time in, too. Last night, after class (the class I’m in meets once Saturday a month from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.), we had a big bonfire in the backyard.
No roasted marshmallows to go with it; we just enjoyed each other’s company by the fire in the backyard.
While I’m not a big fan of Pumpkin Spice Lattes, I do love the fall.
‘Til my next post, whenever that may be (early November at the latest)…
If you have been following me on The Ranger Project on YouTube, then you know that I have recently gone primal. My wife and I have pledged to go primal for the entire month of September, excepting ONE meal at our little guy’s 2nd birthday party later this month.
We’re on day two, and I know I have no rights to say, “It’s going great!” There are still a lot of tough days (potentially) ahead of us. However, we are finding it easier knowing that there are a lot of great primal/paleo recipes out there. (I’m leaning toward primal, Tina is leaning more paleoish at the moment.)
Last night, we had Paleo Chili Rellenos, which were astounding delicious. Those will definitely be going in the dinner rotation. I was a little disappointed in how mild the poblano peppers were. I am by no means a heat fiend. Jalapenos are about as hot as I’m willing to go, but these were about as mild as green peppers. (My wife thought hers were hotter; maybe I just got a dud.)
Tonight, we are having bacon cheeseburgers with homemade paleo mayo served on green lettuce leaves. We wanted butter lettuce, but I couldn’t find it without going to another store, so I just got green leaf lettuce. It should be a lot better than iceberg, regardless.
Planning our meals out ahead of time is clearly what is going to be our saving grace. We’re also cooking enough for every dinner that we have leftovers for the next day.
Eventually, we want to get our little guy on the primal/paleo bandwagon, but we’re not being too worrisome about that, yet. He still enjoys his morning oatmeal, and the kid is so scrawny (80% height, 25% weight, but his pediatrician doesn’t seem worried, so we aren’t either), we’re just pleased when he’ll eat. Getting him off of junk food once he left daycare was tough enough, but we’ve finally (mostly) won that battle. (Grandparents still feed some junk food, but that’s just what grandparents do, and neither of us are so stressed by it that we freak out if our not-quite-two year old eats some Cheetos with grandma.)
I’m also not getting on the scale until October. I weighed in at 399.8 about a week or so ago, and I am pledging to be scale-free until October 1. I’m hoping to see a weight in the 380s, at least. I think that’s extremely doable. The last time I gave up the scale for a month, I obsessed a bit about it. So far, I’m doing okay. We’ll see how the rest of the month goes.
Exercise-wise, I am doing a mix of Body Revolution by Jillian Michaels and the pool. I am not following Body Revolution by their calendar. With the still-recovering (but much better) knee, I imagine I’ll be on Weeks 1 and 2 of Body Revolution for quite a while. That is perfectly fine by me.
I weighed in this morning. It wasn’t good, but I knew it wouldn’t be. Still, this just means I can look forward to a big loss next week.
February 26, 2014
Change from Highest: –2.2 pounds
Oh well. It is what it is.
I started my day off with a trip to the gym before work. Tomorrow, I am going to go to the gym after work, just to see which I prefer.
Let me also say… I am SO out of shape. I remember when I could do an hour on the elliptical, hard. I can’t do that anymore. I did manage to get through 30 minutes of cardio. I would have done the weight room instead, but whenever I eat junk food, sometimes my joints stiffen up, and my right elbow was not cooperating this morning. Rather than risk injury, I hit the treadmill on an incline instead.
I also decided that I should establish a baseline, and the ellipticals offered a fitness test. I took it.
Ugh. I used to be more fit than this.
Still, it is what it is, and this gives me a good starting point. I’ll take it again in a month and see how I rank.
I’ve heard people say that felt paranoid to be the weakest one in the gym, and this morning, I was the weakest person there. No worries, though. I won’t lie; at one point, my inner fat kid did see a REALLY fit guy talking to another pretty fit guy, and for half a second, I thought, “They’re talking about how slow I’m going…” They weren’t. They were trying to get a pickup game of basketball going.
That’s the thing about gym rats. They are probably the least judgmental people on the planet. So whether you weigh almost 420 like me or you are under 100 pounds or anywhere in between, don’t let the gym intimidate you.
Breakfast – 2 slices of bacon, 1 fried egg, sweet potato with butter and honey
Lunch – pork shoulder, potato with sour cream, 1 slice of homemade pizza
Midafternoon – 1 clementine, 1 apple
Late afternoon – 3/4 of a whole wheat sunbutter and jelly (all clean) sandwich [the kid ate the other 1/4]
Dinner – steak, baked potato, asparagus, frozen cherries
After-dinner Snack – 2 clean homemade chocolate chip cookies
I tried to do MyFitnessPal, but it was SO tedious. I was impressed with the depth of their database, and I may use them yet, but for now, I am just tracking and trying a bit of intuitive eating.
I didn’t take enough food for lunch. Two thin slices of pork shoulder and what amounted to maybe 3/4 of a potato was not enough food. Fortunately, my wonderful boss (who is also a wonderful cook) offered me a slice of her homemade pizza. I probably shouldn’t have – it did have pepperoni on it – but it was good and it helped fill me up. Tomorrow, I will take more food.
Tina and I have dabbled with paleo and primal, and I suspect that we will eventually try primal again, but for now, we’re just trying to eat mostly clean. I know my diet could be better, but I’m working on progress, not perfection. I also know me; if I make too many big changes at once, I’m more prone to messing up.
Today could have been better, but given how a few of the past days have gone… I’m thrilled. And here’s the truth of it – I enjoyed myself without going overboard or obsessing. For a brief moment, I had the fleeting thought, “Oh, I shouldn’t have those two cookies, because I’m blogging my food now.” But then I decided that I wanted them, and I was going to enjoy them guilt-free. Which I did. (And incidentally, there have been plenty of times that instead of eating two cookies, I would have had four, or six, or eight…)
First day of the Ranger Project was a success in my book!
Change This Week: –4.4 pounds
I knew I would see a big drop today. The food I ate on Friday night was quite bloat-inducing, so there you go. I was pleased to see it drop 4.4 pounds, even though I know it wasn’t real.
I’m starting Body Revolution again tomorrow. My week will consist of weights workouts on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, and cardio workouts on all of the other days. Josie told me to pick one thing and be epic with it this week – my workout is going to be that one epic thing.
Breakfast – steak, fried egg, onion and mushrooms, tomato
Lunch – sausage patty, 2 homemade biscuits, 1 clean personal serving cheese pizza
Mid-afternoon snack – olive oil cooked popcorn
Dinner – 2 slices chicken bacon pizza, 1 slice S’mores pizza
Snack – veggie juice
My food could have been better, but the truth of it is – I am still experimenting on myself, and this is (believe it or not) substantially less food than I’ve eaten in the past few weeks. That’s one benefit of being a big dude; you can still eat quite a bit of food and lose weight.
Tina and I are eating an 80% clean/20% relaxed food plan. We eat clean the vast majority of the time, but if we want to splurge a tiny bit, we do. Some people eat vegan, some paleo, some are relaxed, some are crazy. I’m trying to let go of my binge eating attitude, and if I was an alcoholic, I would go cold turkey. Those with eating disorders cannot go cold turkey on food. As a result, I have to learn to live with moderation. I’ve seen people eat so clean they become literally obsessed with what they eat. This is the exact opposite of what I want. I want to someday reach the point where I don’t think about food obsessively, good or bad.
I’m working my way through a book that I hope will help. I’ll share if/when I come across any great insights.
In other news, Tina and I found a new church today. This church has both a traditional and a contemporary service; we went to the traditional sermon, and it was wonderful. We both left feeling very energized, and I am quite hopeful that this will be our church home. We also were made to feel very welcome, which was nice. We’ve been to churches and been completely ignored. Here, even though we were visitors, we were truly welcomed.
After church and a very bland, disappointing lunch, we made some popcorn, cooked in a bit of olive oil, and watched X-Men 3. Tina has recently gotten into comic book movies, which for a dork like myself, is pretty exciting. We also watched some Walking Dead today, too.
I also spent a bit of time preparing for the fall semester, which starts tomorrow. I have a class that starts at 8 a.m. I am glad school is starting back up. Campus is much nicer with students on it.
My highest weight ever was 402.8. This morning, I weighed in at 396. This is a tiny bit artificially inflated, but by and large, this is what I weigh now. For all intents and purposes, I gained all of my weight back.
No guilt, no judgment, just a firm resolution to lose this weight again.
Many, many thanks to Erin and Josie. I know I will succeed with support like you two in my corner. And Erin, we can and will do this. For ourselves – no one else.
For as many days as I can, (i.e. – when time allows), I will track my food in this daily blog journal format.
Breakfast – steak, fried egg, mushrooms and onions, tomato
Lunch – chicken breast, half an avocado with pink Himalayan salt, quarter of a red cabbage cooked with olive oil, half a cucumber, grilled onion and peppers
Mid-afternoon – nectarine, cherries
Early dinner – clean jalapeno pizza with added prosciutto
Snack #1 – popcorn cooked with clarified butter and olive oil, 3 dried figs
Snack #2 – 2 clean chocolate chip cookies, glass of raw milk
I am using this blog to experiment on myself. I am going to eat as cleanly as possible, and I will post all food here, good or bad. I may have eaten too much today; I was quite hungry tonight. But that’s something I can fix later. For tonight, it happened, so here it is, reported.
The dried figs were a pleasant surprise. We got them in our last NatureBox, and while I’ve had fig newtons, I’ve never had dried figs. They were excellent, and honestly, they tasted like the inside of a fig newton (not sure why that surprised me).
My best food news – I finally made clean mayo! I’ll post the recipe and maybe even a video soon, but I’ve had so many failures, I was thrilled to finally come across a tip that worked. The tip was this – use the cheapest, store brand extra-light-tasting olive oil you can find. I had been buying the expensive stuff, but this time, I used the cheapest mayo Wal-Mart carried (but it was still olive oil!) and it made the most delicious, creamy mayo. And best yet, it’s not only clean, it’s actually healthy! It has four ingredients – egg (local pastured egg from farmer’s market), extra light tasting olive oil, ground mustard, and salt. No EDTA or high fructose corn syrup or anything else that you find in store bought mayo. And I can’t stress this enough – it’s definitely mayo, and it’s honestly the best tasting mayo I have ever had.
Tina and I also got a trial membership to Ancestry.com. My family has a lot of Native American ancestry, and unfortunately, that means my family tree is going to be a bit small. I guess Indians didn’t keep up with the census too much. But combining what I’ve learned on Ancestry and what I learned from my parents, I now know that I am about a quarter Native American (if you add it up) and I have Cherokee blood on my mother’s side and Shawnee blood on my father’s side. Tina (who doesn’t seem to have a drop of Indian blood) has made it back about 600 years on her side of the family tree. The coolest thing yet – she and Henry are descended from royalty through her paternal bloodline. How cool is that?!
No exercise today, unfortunately. I didn’t plan it in and the day just got away from me. I’ll make up for it tomorrow, though, because Tina and I are doing a virtual 5K!