Posts Tagged ‘power rangers’

Geeked Out Weight Loss Series: Power Rangers: Missing Green

For the first GOWL of 2012, I am going back to the Power Rangers! Today, I’m watching the episode “Missing Green” from the second season of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. (And every episode of Power Rangers is available on Netflix’s Watch Instantly!)

If you are a new reader or don’t remember me doing these sporadically last year, basically, I watch something geeky that appeals to me (frequently Power Rangers or something on Nickelodeon), recap it along with some pictures, and then provide an example of a weight loss analogy that is present somewhere within. Sometimes the analogies are easy and just fall in my lap. At other times, they have to be pried out, but either way, I try to make it work.

The Plot:

Red Ranger Jason is having difficulty concentrating as he practices for an upcoming martial arts tournament. However, his mind isn’t focused. Jason is having a lot of guilt because he feels it his fault that Tommy (the former Green Ranger) lost his powers.

His fellow Rangers decide to try and find Tommy so that Jason can know, for sure, that it wasn’t his fault.

Lord Zedd, of course, sends Goldar to capture the Ranger teens. Goldar is successful, and Lord Zedd now has what he needs to lure the Red Ranger into a trap.

Jason, alone, morphs, goes into battle, and ultimately succeeds in saving his fellow Rangers.

Better yet, Alpha uses the Command Center’s amazing technology to locate Tommy, where in a voiceover we learn that Tommy holds no ill will toward Jason and is totally okay. He’s also suspiciously wearing white instead of green. Could Tommy be planning to return as the White Ranger? Nah, that’s just hopeful thinking.

But Jason, self-esteem restored, goes to the tournament and wins.

The Analogy:

Yeah, this one is pretty easy. Jason’s performance in the beginning was impacted because his heart wasn’t in it. It took some soul searching and fighting with Goldar (and some technological stalking of Tommy) for Jason to regain his self-esteem. As soon as he did, he performed amazingly and placed first at the tournament.

How often have we let US get in the way of our self-esteem? Nothing change in Jason’s world from the beginning of this episode and the end. Tommy still isn’t a Ranger. All that Jason learned was that Tommy doesn’t hold the loss of his Ranger powers against him.

It really is true; you have to think well of yourself.

If your confidence is shot, then you will not do well.

If you have no self-esteem, then you will not perform.

If you think poorly of yourself, then you will fail.

I’ve come a long way in my journey, and I really do feel like this time, my head is where it needs to be for me to lose this weight. I got fat for a reason, and I stayed fat for a reason. And now, I’m losing weight for a reason.

Because I’m worth it.

But you can hear me say I’m worth it all day long. Are you worth it? And only you can answer that.

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Geeked Out Weight Loss Series: Power Rangers, Season 3 – I’m Dreaming of a White Ranger

Well, aside from the fact that the above title is probably the LONGEST blog title post I’ve ever written, this is going to be a different article. Today, I’m combining three things. My geeked out review of an old favorite, a Christmas episode, and weight loss. So I present to you… the fairly forced weight loss analogy found in the third season episode of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers “I’m Dreaming of a White Ranger.”

Alas, I do not know where you can watch this online other than to download it or use Netflix Watch Instantly. If you’d really like to see it, email me and I’ll see what I can do.


Power Rangers is definitely known for its complex, high-concept, deep plots, and this episode is no exception. Our episode starts off with Kimberly and Aisha (the Pink and Yellow Rangers) leading a group of children through the world’s longest Christmas carol (seriously, these kids sing for at least four hours – an impressive feat considering this is a 30 minute episode, with commercials) as we see various other Christmas-like activities going on.

Ernie (owner of the Youth Center and not a Power Ranger) gives Tommy (leader of the Power Rangers and not a youth center owner) the star to go on top of the Christmas tree (I guess because Tommy is tall), but Tommy seems a rather sad young girl who was just singing in the world’s longest Christmas carol just sitting around, looking sad. Tommy asks her if she would help him put the star on the tree, which is just silly, because she’s not a Power Ranger OR tall. I guess he’s hoping it would cheer her up.

Well, she smiles a little bit when he boosts her up to put the star on the tree.

In a different part of the Youth Center, Kimberly admits to Aisha that, while she is happy she gets to spend Christmas with Aisha and her family, she is sad she isn’t going to get to spend it with her mom. (In a previous episode, we learned that Kimberly’s mother let her move in with Aisha to finish out the school year while she went to France with her new husband.) Aisha hugs her and suggests Kimberly help her with the decorations.

Thanks, I don’t miss my mom at all now.

Thanks, I don’t miss my mom at all now.

Bulk and Skull show up. Quick note – the last time I reviewed a Power Ranger episode, it was early 1st season. This is late third season. So you should know, Bulk and Skull are no longer bullies. Now they are junior police officers. And they are going to be working the Christmas party on duty, although Bulk will be dressed up to play Santa.

Meanwhile, on the moon, Zedd is ranting about how much he hates the holidays. This year, in his attempt to take over the Earth, he is going to make Santa’s elves create a toy that will make any child who sees it instantly brainwashed. And no, it isn’t Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. It’s a spinning top, that I assume uses magic. Any child who sees it will basically be under Lord Zedd’s control and able to do only his evil bidding.

And back at the Youth Center, Kimberly and Aisha are leading the kids through another practice before their big show. Becky, the same girl who Tommy helped put the star on the tree, is especially down. After the rehearsal, Aisha and Kimberly ask her why, and she says that there will be no one there to hear her sing.

At the North Pole, Santa is supervising his elves when Rito Revolto shows up, takes over, and orders the elves to make no other toys except for Zedd’s magic spinning top.

Kimberly has another heart-to-heart with Becky, who confides to her that her dad works too much and can’t spend any time with her. Kimberly suggests that Becky let her dad know how she feels. And inside, just as Tommy is about to get himself some Mistletoe Lovin’, Zordon pages the Rangers.

At the Command Center, the Rangers learn about Zedd’s evil Christmas toy plan. Of course the Rangers will help, but because of magic or the jet stream or something, their morphing powers won’t work at the North Pole. Of course, that doesn’t stop the Rangers, so they teleport to the North Pole to help out.

The Rangers see the monsters overrunning Santa’s workshop, so they come up with a plan to save Santa. Billy, resident genius, thinks that if their powers won’t work at the North Pole, then neither will the monster’s. Fortunately, they are correct. The Rangers proceed to fight the two gigantic warriors, armed with swords…

…with snowballs. And of course, snowballs > swords, so the Rangers win!

With the elves’ help, Rito, Goldar, and the Tengas are defeated, tied up with ribbon, and teleported back to the moon.

Is this over yet? No? Crap. Okay.

The head elf complains about the toy production being off schedule, but the Rangers help with teamwork or magic or power crystals or something.

With Christmas saved, the Ranger teens head back to Angel Grove, Becky’s dad shows up after all, the kids sing, Kimberly’s mother shows up from France after all, and Tommy finally gets to kiss Kimberly under the mistletoe.

Weight Loss Analogy

Hoo boy. This one is going to be tough. Uhm… Okay, we’ll call the bad guys the holiday temptations that we have to face. The high calorie treats. The parties. The deviations from our schedules that make regular exercise tough.

So, when faced with these temptations, what should we do? Give in? Let evil win.

No, we turn into Power Rangers, pelt them with metaphorical snowballs, and take back the healthy holidays.

Okay, that was weak. This one wasn’t quite as clear cut for me.

But hey, Power Rangers and the holidays. What’s better?

How about a trip to Vegas?! Tina and I are leaving for Vegas and we’ll be back on the 23rd. That means I won’t be weighing in for a bit.

My Vegas pledges? I’m going to enjoy myself, but I’m still going to eat as much real, healthy food as I can. We aren’t going to have a car, so we’ll be doing LOTS of walking. I’m going to take my heart rate monitor and make sure I get a good calorie burn in every day. I will also drink LOTS of water.

I’m still planning to be down to 369 by January 1st. I’m also not going to neglect this blog. I didn’t think to do this in enough time to get some guest posts, so instead, I’ve got a few blog posts scheduled to post while I’m in Sin City.

I’m going to post a few times about my Christmas ornaments. I’ve even got some that really are weight-loss themed. And of course, after Christmas, I’ll be sure to share photos of our eats, trips, sights, shows, and more.

If I don’t get to “speak” to you again before the holidays, have a Merry Christmas!

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Pink Ranger Dressing Recipe

Recently, I mentioned that I have discovered I like using Pink Ranger Dressing on my salad.

If you have no idea what Pink Ranger Dressing is, well, this post is for you.

Very quickly, why Pink Ranger Dressing? Am I such a Power Ranger geek that I would actually name random food after Power Rangers?

Well, yes, I am, probably, but that’s not what I call this dressing that. I call this dressing that because the actress Catherine Sutherland, who played the second Pink Ranger Katharine Hillard, now runs a blog called Homemade Lifestyle, about parenting and healthy recipes. Obviously, I started following it because… well, she’s the freaking Pink Ranger!

Put on your helmet, Kat! You're horrible at keeping your identity secret!

Put on your helmet, Kat! You're horrible at keeping your identity secret!

But she posted a recipe a few weeks back about how she makes oil and vinegar based dressings for her family.

There are two food substances that I hate.

The one I hate more than anything is ketchup. I think ketchup is the vilest of all the food stuffs. I don’t even know how it is considered food. It gags me. I would rather dip my French fries into mud. And I’m completely serious. I hate it. I hate smelling it. I hate seeing pictures of it. I hate that it exists. If I’m ever given three wishes, my second wish is to rid the world of ketchup. (The first wish is for ten trillion dollars, tax free, and the third wish is for a bigger penis wallet to keep my money in.)

Sorry, ketchup hate rant. My second most hated food stuff is vinegar. This one kind of makes me sad. Unlike ketchup which is full of sugar and evil and contains nothing good for the human body, I know that vinegar can actually be good for you.

As a result, when she shared a post about how she makes her own dressings, I decided to give it a try. It couldn’t be easier.

You need four ingredients. You need some type of oil (olive, sesame, walnut, et cetera), some type of vinegar (white, malt, rice, champagne, the sky is the limit), some type of sweetener (honey, brown sugar, agave, et cetera), and some type of binder (such as mustard, mayonnaise, avocado, and so forth – it basically just needs to be a flavor you like and kind of thick). An optional fifth ingredient, if your vinegar isn’t flavored, is flavoring, such as raspberries, garlic, shallots, orange…

Are you starting to get the picture that this is VERY versatile dressing?

For today’s mix, I chose walnut oil, raspberry flavored wine vinegar, amber agave, and honey mustard. Since the vinegar is flavored, I don’t need a fifth flavoring ingredient.

In a jar, carafe, or whatever container you choose to make your dressing in, add about ¼ cup or so (I didn’t measure) of the oil.

Add a similar amount of vinegar. You can add or more less, depending upon how you like your dressing. With this recipe, experimentation is truly key. Next, add about half a tablespoon or so of your sweetener. If you like your dressing really sweet, add more. If you like your dressing tart, add less. Finally, add your binder. I usually put in about half a tablespoon or so, but to be honest, I eyeball it.

At this point, put the lid on and shake (or get out your whisk and… well, whisk).

Viola! You’ve just made salad dressing. It keeps in the fridge wonderfully. You may need to remix it before you use it, but it tastes amazing. I’ve gotten to where I even like to splash a little of this dressing on a bowl of nothing more than spinach leaves. It’s a fantastic way for me to get my greens AND some healthy oils in me. And again, let’s not forget about the health benefits of vinegar, which include helping the body absorb calcium (which is present in the greens), can increase insulin sensitivity in those who are insulin resistant, and it is full of easily-assimilated vitamins!

I’ve also made batches that were savory instead of sweet. The previous batch to this one used spicy mustard, light agave, garlic infused vinegar, and olive oil. It was ridiculously good, too.

The best part about using this type of dressing is that you don’t need much. Because it isn’t thick, it pretty easily coats a salad without having to use tons.

I wish I could say the other Power Rangers had cooking blogs and I’ve gotten other health tips from them, but I haven’t. Until they do, I can only add Pink Ranger Dressing to my cooking arsenal, but hey, it’s already proven to be a great way for me to get greens AND healthy oils and vinegar in my diet. Win.

In my next Ranger-themed food post, we’ll talk about Yellow Ranger Hoagies!

(Note: there are no Yellow Ranger Hoagies.)

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Power Rangers: A Pressing Engagement

Busy summer.

I truly believed that by working at a university, I would have an easy summer. There aren’t many students here now, right? It’s got to be easier.

Yeah, right.

One of the busiest summers of my professional life ever. (I’ll be honest – I’m really looking forward to having next summer off. My new nine month contract starts in August! Woo hoo!)

But I wouldn’t change a second of it. It’s been awesome. I’ve made some extra money, paid down some credit card debt (still have a ways to go, but we’re working on it!), had some good times, and kept working out. My weight, as always, is giving me a little trouble, but I’m in charge here, and the numbers are dropping. I’m actually excited about weighing in tomorrow. I expect to post at least a two pound loss, so woo hoo for me.

The Run For Your Lives is in just a few months. Holy crap. I have to get cracking! Weights are good, weights are great. The weight room makes me happy. And weights are going to be crucial during this challenge, because the Run For Your Lives isn’t an ordinary 5K. They’ve only released two of the twelve obstacles we have to navigate during the race (while running from zombies), but one involves climbing a wall. Climbing a wall will take muscles. It would be nice if I was about two hundred pounds lighter, but I’ll just have to do the best I can. Fortunately, we’re allowed to skip obstacles if we just physically can’t do them, so I always have that in my back pocket. (This is not the best option, for two reasons. One, if you skip an obstacle, while you are allowed to finish, you automatically finish as a zombie, and I’m still hoping to finish the race as a survivor.)

So, in a change of pace, rather than lift weights this morning, we did cardio at the gym this morning. I’m still nowhere near ready to run a 5K, and given that I’m being CHASED through a 5K on October 22nd, I should get a move on. I feel confident in my ability to tear it up; I’ve still got time. I just have to start. So today we did.

It’s funny. If you take a break from exercise, you lose it. A few months ago, I actually jogged 1.55 miles without too terribly much effort. Today, three separate 1-minute jogs almost killed me. Oh well. I was there once; I’ll get there again. Tina and I are even talking about hitting the gym after work a few times, too, just to get in more cardio time. (We like weights in the morning.)

But this morning, I watched an episode of Power Rangers at the gym. I just put my iPad on the treadmill, signed on to WKU’s wireless internet, pulled up the Netflix ap, and got the 4th episode of the 1st season going. The pregnant lady next to me on the treadmill kept giving me looks out of the corner of her eye when the show started. I know she was just jealous she had to watch AM Kentucky while I was rocking out with Zordon and Alpha.

So yeah, I accidentally took a little hiatus from my dorkdom to work on work. Geeze, it’s like there are bills that have to be paid or something. And while I can’t promise how often I’ll post, I’m really going to try and do more than just my weekly weigh-ins.

Without further ado, I present to you the 4th episode of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, A Pressing Engagement.


Our episode starts with Jason in the Youth Center, trying to set the Angel Grove High Bench Press record. For most reps. The record to beat is 1,010. Not heaviest weight. Most reps.

Okay, I’ve never heard of such a weight lifting record, but whatever. Ernie loses count around 1,005, and Jason is afraid people will think he’s a quitter. Kimberly and Zack assure him that they will think no such thing.

Rita notices that Jason is distraught, but his friends make him feel better. Therefore, she will send a monster called King Sphinx down who can flap his wings, blow the other Rangers away, and make Jason be alone or something.

This should have been the episode they submitted for the Emmy nod.

Anyway, Jason, Zack, and Kimberly hear from Zordon about the monster, morph, and sure enough, Kimberly and Zack are blown away from the fight and into the Youth Center, demorphed.

Jason, of course, is alone, but the other four get together, Zordon tells them something about Power Crystals or Power Somethings, and the Ranger find them, throw them, or something, Jason finds them, and they turn into his friends.

I really was paying attention. But in the end, Jason is reunited with his friends, they defeat the monster, and he reattempts the bench press record, this time with Trini counting. And of course, he succeeds, with his friend’s help. Mostly because Trini can actually count above 1,000 without being distracted.

Cheering for Jason's victory... and Trini is levitating

Cheering for Jason's victory... and Trini is levitating

Weight Loss Analogy

Okay, I never claimed that every episode would be a winner. Part of the problem is that Power Rangers was adapted from footage of the Japanese show Kyoruu Sentai Zyuranger. Other than the appearance of the Ranger suits, very little stayed the same. It wasn’t a show about five teenagers fighting evil. It was about five ancient warriors fighting evil.

That made for some interesting fill-ins when the show was adapted for a US audience. The Power Crystals allegedly made more sense in the original footage. (The usage of Japanese footage is also why the Yellow Ranger looks masculine when morphed. Yellow was male in Japan.) But regardless, I’m going to disregard the Power Crystals or whatever other nonsense was going on and just focus on Jason.

Jason admitted that he needed his friends to help him out.

How perfect is that for weight loss and fitness? Whether you have a little to lose or almost 200 pounds to lose (or more), we don’t need to do it alone.

I’m not going to say that it can’t be done alone, but I know that I, for one, have no desire to attempt it alone.

I’m very lucky in that I am surrounded by people to help me out. Tina is my number one support. I have my coworkers, who always express an interest when I share any success I’ve had in the gym or on the scale. I have my Weight Watchers @Work group, who are likewise very encouraging and a great support system.

I’ve also got this blog and all of you. I love having a place where I can vent, share my dorkiness, and talk with others. Even if you don’t have a blog, you can leave comments and talk with people on their blogs. We’re all in this together, and collectively, we can accomplish more than we can alone.

Those are just some of the people I have in my corner, helping me in my weight loss fight. (And I’m including you in my corner, too. You’re a bigger help to me than you’ll ever realize.)

Who is helping you?

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Busy Summer

Have you ever had the best of intentions, and life just gets in the way?

In the past on this blog, I’ve spent some considerable time griping about the utter hell that was my previous job. Now, any time that I mention that work has been hectic, I always feel I need to disclaim, “It’s been busy, but it’s still great!”

Well, here comes that same disclaimer. This has been one of the busiest months of my professional career I have EVER had. However, it has been amazingly awesome.

Until this past weekend, I worked about fifteen days straight, with each workday consisting of, at a minimum, ten hours, and at the maximum end, around eighteen hours. A typical work day for the month of June has been about eight hours. I’ve taken a laptop home and set up a little workstation in my living room so I’m not completely ignoring my wife and pets.

I’ve been working on producing some very research-intensive PD modules. I have read a LOT of research this month. I’ve been dreaming about research. (And if you want to have a sucky dream, dream about research.)

I did a presentation last week at a conference. My presentation title was Buffy, Harry Potter, and Homer Simpson Help Teach Core Content. It was freaking awesome! I absolutely nailed it and got tons of kudos and accolades. Yay me!

Of course, preparing also took up a considerable amount of time.

But again, I absolutely adore my job. I adore everything about it.

I work in education. I should have next summer off with pay. That will be sweet. I did not have this summer off, but I did get paid. I am extremely thankful to have had the opportunity to work this summer with pay, regardless of how tired I’ve been.

That’s why my blog has been languishing for a bit.

That’s also why my weight loss efforts have been languishing. I’ve been hovering around the 370 mark for a while. I have to break through this. I’m setting myself the goal of being below 350 by the time the fall semester starts in late August. Tough but doable. I just have to stop eating so much food and move more. There isn’t really a secret formula; I know this.

I am going to resume weekly weigh-ins. I need that level of accountability. I’ve found myself dreading the scale a few times in the morning because I know that my lack of activity the day before and a few poor food choices are going to make me regret it. That’s not healthy, and it completely defeats my purpose of wanting to weigh in every day. So until I get in a mentally healthier place, I’m not doing that.

So on Friday, I’m going to weigh in. I’ll use my starting June weight of 375.3 as the previous weight.

I’m going to continue my dorkiness. In fact, I am continuing my dorkiness at the gym.

Tina and I finally switched gyms. We just signed up to use the Preston center on WKU’s campus (which is where I now work). In the past, I’ve been taking my portable DVD player to the gym. An amazing thing occurred to me the other day.

This gym is on WKU’s campus.

WKU has wi-fi all over campus.

I have an iPad and a Netflix account.

I can watch Netflix when I’m on the cardio equipment! Right now, I’m making my way through the series Power Rangers Mystic Force, which is the series that was airing when I stopped watching Power Rangers. It’s mega-dorky (of course), but I love it because all of the fight scenes inspires me to push myself even harder when I’m on the elliptical. I just wedge my iPad on the magazine rack, set the time, and enjoy. Obviously I can’t watch Netflix when I’m lifting weights, but I only get bored doing cardio, so it works out pretty well.

I have other good news.

Tina just got her first big girl job! Best yet – she also is coming to WKU to work. With both of us working here, that means we have the top-tier insurance for free. That alone equals a $210 a month savings, because I can now take her off of my insurance.

She also will get free tuition. She’s starting her Master’s degree this fall.

This job is one of the best thing that could have ever happened. This will also help us pay off our debts and get us in a great position to potentially start a family soon.

Things are coming up great. Now I have the rest of the summer to get my weight loss efforts on track, too, and things are golden!

I will be reviewing an episode of the Power Rangers before Friday when I do my next weigh-in.

How has your summer been?

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