Thursday, March 31, 2016

Day 23 -- Soreness & Fatigue

Today, for the first time since my first few days of working out, I am sore. Yesterday's chest/triceps/shoulders workout included a few more sets than usual, and some exercises I haven't done in a long time, so that's led to a little soreness today.

The fatigue is more a result of very little sleep -- about five hours' worth. Netflix and I spent a little too much quality time together last night. You know how it is, you start a series, an episode ends on a cliffhanger, you go to the next one, which ends on another cliffhanger, and before you know it, it's 2 o'clock in the morning!

That's one of the things I need to change -- getting more sleep. So far I've done okay with the working out and diet, but I still don't get enough sleep, so that'll be my next target, more sleep.

Along those lines, I'll be making this short and sweet so I can get some more sleep tonight!


Stationary Bike
43 minutes (6 minutes at lvl 6, 18 minutes on lvl 5, 19 minutes on lvl 4)
14 miles
455 calories

Food for the day


Denver steak -- 6.25 ounces
Mixed veggies -- 1/2 cup

Salad (lettuce, grape tomatoes, mushrooms, 1 boiled egg, 1 ounce lean ham, 2 tablespoons fat-free thousand island dressing)

First dinner
Boiled chicken breast -- 4 ounces
Mozzarella cheese -- 1/8 cup

Second dinner
Mini-chicken sandwiches (each one had 2 ounces boiled chicken breast, basil, 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese, 3/4 tablespoon homemade chipolte mayonnaise, THIN-sliced French bread)

Hamburger steak -- 1.25 ounce
Instant mashed potatoes -- 3/4 cup (yes, I know, this is not good for me)

Totals for the day
1,400 calories
51 grams fat
133 grams protein

Water -- 60 ounces
Diet soda -- 36 ounces

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Eventually, Even Mr. Miyagi Agreed...The Belt DOES Matter

Some of you may remember how I took issue with Mr. Miyagi in an earlier post, explaining that the belt does matter, even though he said it didn't (See Mr. Miyagi was wrong -- it IS all about the belt).

Eventually, though, the wise old Mr. Miyagi even came to understand there are times when it's all about the belt, as illustrated in today's video.

What's that got to do with me, other than demonstrating I may have an unhealthy obsession with 80s movies?

Well, I'm hear to talk again about the belt. In that earlier post, you may recall, I was happy because I was able to squeeze (and I do mean SQUEEZE) into my belt, on the first hole. It had been several weeks since I could even wear a belt, so getting it around me and buckling it -- not matter how hard it was -- was a major achievement.

Today I notched that same belt on the second hole -- and comfortably, too. I'm down to the second hole!

Sometimes, when you're trying to lose weight, a scale can be a poor indicator of your progress. I do my weigh-ins first thing out of bed in the morning, presumably meaning day-to-day comparisons should have some validity. Still, all sorts of factors can throw those day-to-day checks. If I eat too late the night before, if I'm retaining a little more fluid one day -- there are all sorts of factors that can throw the weigh-in off a bit. In my case, even though this is Wednesday, I still have the effects of Sunday's off-day (and the unplanned off-night the evening before).

So yeah, when I stepped on the scales this morning, I wasn't all that happy.

And seeing your weight fluctuate the wrong direction can be a diet-killer. You think, "Heck, all that work, all that dieting, for THIS? Why bother," then you go off and eat a half-dozen tacos.

There's a better way -- while the scale might not always be the best indicator of how you're doing, the measuring tape doesn't lie. If you're losing inches, you're losing fat. And even without an official measuring day, the one quick indicator of how you're doing is the lowly BELT.

So when I slipped into the second hole -- comfortably -- I didn't much care what the scale said, I knew I was still doing right. The Belt always tells the truth!

Now for my workout and food for the day.

Weight training, chest, shoulders and triceps

Dumbbell Bench Press
55-pound dumbbells, 1 set, 10 reps
85-pound dumbbells, 3 sets, 8 reps each
85-pound dumbbells, 1 sex 6 reps

Incline Barbell Press
115 pounds, 2 sets, 8 reps each

Flat-bench Dumbbell Flyes
40-pounds, 2 sets, 8 reps each

Seated Barbell Press
95 pounds, 1 set, 8 reps
115 pounds, 1 set, 8 reps

Machine Lateral Raises
105 pounds, 2 sets, 10 reps

Rear Deltoid Machine Flyes
125 pounds, 2 sets, 10 reps each

Lying Curl Bar Extensions (also known as nose breaks if you don't do them correctly)
50 pounds, 1 set, 10 reps
60 pounds, 1 set, 8 reps

Cable press down
150 pounds, 2 sets, 10 reps

Seated Machine Crunch
110 pounds, 1 set, 15 reps
110 pounds, 1 set, 10 reps

Now, for the food component of my new healthy plan.

Eggs (1 whole, 2 whites)

Denver steak -- 5 ounces
Mixed veggies -- 2/3 cup

Salad (lettuce, boiled egg, tomatoes/carrots/mushroom)

First Dinner
Boiled chicken breast -- 4 ounces
Mozzarella cheese -- 1/4 cup

Second Dinner
Chicken Fajitas (No, NOT the fajita mixture I mentioned last week, the really BAD-for me stuff) These consisted of a total of four ounces of chicken breast, onions, peppers and salsa, along with a little bit of mozzarella cheese on two whole-wheat tortillas.

More fajitas mixture (2.5 ounces chicken, onions, peppers, salsa, mozzarella), but NO tortilla.

Total for the day

1,415 calories
57 grams of fat (a little high)
155 grams protein

Water -- 75 ounces
diet soda -- 24 ounces

Well, folks, that's it for the day. Later this week I'll do an official weigh-in/measurement, and maybe talk a little about some of the changes I'm seeing and feeling as I move toward the fourth full week of this!

Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Day 21...Tired, But Doing Well

Today is actually Day 21 of my diet and exercise plan, my attempt at losing weight, getting health and in shape.

So far, it's gone well, and I'd love to write more at length about some of the changes I've made, but it's late and I'm really dragging -- a long, hard cardio workout will do that for you.

So tonight I check in only to give an update on my workout and my eating plan for the day.


Stationary Bike
46 minutes (37 minutes at lvl 5, the rest at lvl 4)
16 miles
535 calories burned

Eating for the day

Fat-free GreekYogurt

Denver steak -- 5 ounces
Veggies -- 1/4 cup

Salad (boiled egg, 1.5 ounces lean ham, lettuce and stuff)
Low Fat Greek Yogurt

Lean pork chop -- 6/5 ounces
Baked red potato-- 4 ounces
Diet Butter -- 1 tablespoon
Small slice of French Bread

Totals for the day
1,025 calories
41 grams fat
145 grams protein

Water -- 75 ounces
Diet soda -- 24 ounces

Thanks for stopping in. Catch you all tomorow!

Monday, March 28, 2016

Back At It! Cardio AND Weight Training In One Day

Well, you know I had an off day yesterday, with no workouts and eating off the diet yesterday, Easter Sunday.

So today I went right back at it, staying strict on the eating plan as well as putting together a weight-training and cardio workout back-to-back. That's not the first time I've done that, but the other times I cut the cardio short to about 20 minutes or so. Today I went a lot longer.

From my experience as the World's Greatest Yo-Yo Dieter, I'm always a little nervous about taking a day off. Too often I've let that spill into the next day, then the next, and so on. But, as I was reminded yesterday, I'm still far, far too heavy, and that means after an off day I have to jump right back in and be strict for a while, and I think I did a pretty good job of that today.

Here's what I ate:

Eggs -- 1 whole, 2 whites
Chopped mushrooms -- about a 1/4 cup

Lean pork chop -- 5 ounces
Mixed Veggies -- 3/4 cup
Fat Free Greek yogurt

1/2 cup fruit (grapes and fresh pineapple)
Salad with boiled egg (day after Easter, imagine that!) and mushrooms

Snack 2
Fat Free Greek Yogurt

Denver Steak -- 5.5. ounces
Baked potato -- 5 ounces
Diet butter -- 1 tablespoon

Denver steak -- 3 ounces

Total for the day
Calories -- 1,305
Fat -- 41 grams
Protein -- 173 grams (getting closer to what I should be doing here)

Water -- 66 ounces
Diet soda -- 34 ounces


Stationary Bike
35 minutes (30 minutes on lvl 5, the rest on lvl 4)
11.5 miles
375 calories

Weight workout
Back and biceps

Seated Row
130 pounds, 1 set, 10 reps
200 pounds, 2 sets, 8 reps each
200 pounds, 2 sets, 10 reps each

Lat pulldown
100 pounds, 1 set, 8 reps
90 pounds, 1 set, 8 reps

Bicep workout
Curl-bar Curl
40 pounds, 1 set 10 reps
75 pounds, 1 set, 8 reps
70 pounds, 1 set 8 reps
70 pounds, 1 set 6 reps

And that's about all for today folks! Thanks for stopping in.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Words Every Dieter Wants to Hear: 'You've Gained Weight, Haven't You?'

Yep, that was the question posed to me today, which was great timing since I was starting to feel pretty good about this dieting thing -- yesterday I stepped on the scales and I had lost 19 pounds.

My reply?

"Yeah, I've picked up a little."

Okay, let me give some context here. I was at a family Easter gathering, and the gentleman who asked me his was asking if I could still fit into some shirts he had given me a couple of years back, shirts that had grown to large for him. At the time he gave them to me, I could fit into most of them, and I did wear them -- they were nice shirts!

But over time I had grown out of them. Remember back in my first blog when I talked about how much weight I had been gaining? Well, even though I was plenty big back then when he gave the shirts to me, I was probably 10 to 15 pounds lighter than I am now.

So yes, even though I have lost 19 pounds in the past two-and-a-half weeks, I am still heavier than I was when he gave me the shirts.

While no one wants to be told they look bigger, particularly when they are in the middle of a weight-loss program, this was a good thing for me.

A very good thing.

Here's why. I've had some success with this. I still have sooooooo much further to go, but 19 pounds is nothing to sneeze at. And that's the problem When you're losing weight relatively easily, when the exercise is consistent and you see increases there, it's far too easy to back off, to take it easy.

Just like me this weekend. Friday night, if you'll recall from that day's blog, I skipped my workout. Not because I was lazy, but simply because I wanted to catch Virginia playing that night in the NCAA Sweet Sixteen tournament game. Just one workout, right? No harm, right?

Besides, Saturday morning I went down to the gym and rode 17 miles on the stationary bike, by far my best day so far in cardio.

Now, today, Easter Sunday, was an off-day. It was a scheduled off day. No trip to the gym, and eating whatever I want at a family gathering. No biggie, right?

Well, Saturday night I decided to start that off-day a little early. I didn't eat much Saturday -- two chicken sandwiches (boiled chicken, low-fat mozzarella cheese and rye bread), and a Greek yogurt. That's all, until Saturday night, when I started Sunday's off day a little early. I didn't pig out, but I did eat two bowls of left-over chili, with a little cheese in it. Later, two small Cadbury creme eggs.

Now, missing the weight workout Friday really isn't a major deal. Having an off day Sunday isn't either. Heck, starting that off day a few hours earlier on Saturday night really isn't a problem, either.

But when you combine them all?

That's a bad weekend, and a recipe for disaster when you're trying to lose weight and get in shape, and it's far to easy to justify that in your mind when you're dropping weight and meeting with some success.

So yeah, I was glad someone asked me today if I've gained weight. That was a good reminder of where I am, contrasted with where I need to be and want to be, and that helps me focused just a little bit harder, maybe avoid these sorts of lapses in eating healthy or working out consistently.

There's not a lot to report for the weekend. I didn't eat great Saturday -- I didn't pig out or anything but not entirely healthy. Today I wouldn't say I really, really pigged out, but I did eat too much, and I did eat unhealthy choices.

As for the exercises, nothing today, here's what I did Saturday;

Stationary Bike
50 minutes (35 minutes at lvl 5, rest at lvl 4)
17 miles
525 calories burned (that takes care of one bowl of that chili!)

That's it for the weekend folks. Happy Easter!

Friday, March 25, 2016

Uh Oh....Not Exactly the Day I Had Planned...

Well folks, I was a bad boy today.

No, I didn't blow the diet. In fact, I did quite well on eating. But I didn't do the scheduled weight training. And I didn't do any cardio in its place.

See, the Virginia Cavaliers were playing tonight in the Sweet Sixteen of the NCAA Tournament. They were playing at 7:10 p.m. I got home at 7:08 p.m., and the gym was closed by the time the game was over.

So no exercise, although I did get a bit of a workout during the game -- lots of pacing the floor, a few spikes in the old heart rate, and I never sat down once. Well, other than at half-time. Funny thing, I was never like this before I coached basketball. If any of my old players, or their parents, are reading this they can tell you I almost never sat during those games -- I just paced the sideline, back and forth, back and forth, occasionally giving a little leap into the air, maybe getting a little animated here and there. 

And while it's been three years since I coached (other than that alumni game a couple of months ago), I still get really, really into the games I watch on television now, particularly if one of my favorite teams is playing. The Cavs are my all-time favorite college team, so I had to stay and watch them.

Anyway, so no workout today.

But I did stay on the eating plan, so here's my food for the day.


Lean pork chops -- 5 ounces
Mixed veggie -- 1/2 cup
Low-fat Greek yogurt 

First Dinner
Bottom round steak -- 3.5 ounces
Mixed Veggies -- 1/2 cup

Eggs -- 1 whole, 2 whites
Lean turkey sausage -- 2.5 ounces
Homemade fat-free hash browns -- 1 cup
(okay, it was a BIG snack).

Second snack
Colossal Berry Crunch (with marshmellows!) - 1 cup
Almond mild -- 1 cup

Total for the day
Calories -- 1,210
Fat -- 38 grams
Protein -- 117 grams

Thursday, March 24, 2016

A relatively simple day...

Well, other than being extremely late with this post, today has been a pretty non-descript day. Working, eating (healthy), and coming home to find hot dogs and baked beans where the dinner fare for everyone else in the house.

I like hot dogs. Like them a lot, but those weren't really a major temptation to me like our dinners from the past three nights, so this one was fairly easy to pass up.

I did get to the gym for some cardio, probably ate just a little too much today, and now here I sit at nearly 2 in the morning trying to stay awake long enough to get the blog done for the day!

So, let's get right to it.

Stationary Bike
37 minutes (17 on lvl 5, rest on lvl 4)
23 miles
385 calories burned

Food for the day

Eggs -- 1 whole, 2 whites
Lean turkey sausage -- 2 ounces

Lean pork chop -- 5 ounces
Mixed veggies -- 1/2 cup
Fat Free Greek Yogurt

First Dinner
Bottom Round Steak -- 4 ounces
Mixed veggies -- 1/2 cup

Second Dinner
Eggs -- 2 whole
Lean turkey sausage -- 3 ounces
Homemade fat-free hash browns -- 1 cup

Snack (actually, it's almost late enough to be breakfast the next day. Or is that early enough?)
Cheerios -- 3/4 cup
Almond milk -- 1 cup
Banana -- 3/4 of one

Calories -- 1,480
Fat -- 56 grams
Protein -- 156 grams

That's all for today folks!

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Welcome To Temptation Week

A quick recap of the week so far would go something like this:

Monday: Chili, one of my favorite dishes. I was tempted, very much so, but I did not partake of the evil dish.

Tuesday: Tacos. The ONE. If I was ever forced to select one single dish as my absolute favorite, this is it. But I simply turned from the kitchen, quickly dressed and went to the gym, never touching the villainous, enticing dinner.

Today? Fajitas. (The gentleman featured in today's video presentation is one who ate too many tacos and fajitas -- and no, this is NOT me)

Now in all honestly, the temptation posed by fajitas doesn't quit measure up to chili or tacos. Still, it is a favored dish to my palate, particularly when the fajita mixture is spread over a tortilla, coated in melted butter, then rolled inside that tortilla.

Of course, being the fitness and nutrition buff that I am striving to become, I knew full well the butter was out, but I could easily spread the fajita mixture on a couple of whole-wheat tortillas and enjoy. I even took a tiny little piece of the chicken, along with a small strip of pepper and onion, as a sample of what awaited me after my workout, and I have to tell you these fajitas had an especially enticing flavor.

Upon returning home from the gym I learned the full, vile truth: These fajitas were made with a homemade mixture. This meant they tasted so much better than using a store-bought mix, but it also meant about a gabillion tablespoons of olive oil, sesame oil, and soy sauce were used to create such a full-bodied, piquant taste.

That translates to a gabillion calories.

So, with head hung low, feeling a little bit like Charlie Brown after having the ball yanked away once again as he goes into his kicking motion, I trudged to the fridge, pulled out some lean pork chops, and made those for dinner. Don't get me wrong, I like pork chops. I really, really do. But those fajitas still call to me, a silent, fattening temptress adorned in Tupperware, sitting in the fridge, waiting...waiting...waiting...

But I am strong. I sit with my comforting pork chop, dining away from temptation's sight, knowing that one day 80 pounds from now...I will enjoy those fajitas. Well, maybe not THOSE fajitas...

Exercise for the day:
Weight training for chest, shoulders, triceps.

Flat bench barbell bench press
135 pounds, 1 set, 10 reps
195 pounds, 2 sets, 8 reps each
185 pounds, 2 set, 9 reps each

Incline barbell bench press
115 pounds, 2 sets, 8 reps each.

Dumbbell bench flyes
40 pound dumbbells, 1 set, 8 reps
25 pounds, 1 sex, 8 reps

Seated dumbbell press
50 pounds, 2 sets, 8 reps

Seated backflyes
125 pounds, 2 sets, 10 reps

Triceps pressdown
140 pounds, 2 sets, 10 reps

Seated Machine Tricep Press
240 pounds, 1 set, 12 reps

Seated Machine Crunches
110 pounds, 1 set, 15 reps

Food for the day

Eggs -- 1 whole, 2 whites
Mushrooms -- 1/2 cup chopped

2 4-ounce lean turkey burgers
1/2 can low-fat pork-n-beans (had to do something with the leftovers from last night)

Salad, with lettuce, mushrooms, 2 ounces of lean ham. NO dressing.

Lean pork chop -- 8 ounces

Raisin Bran -- 1 cup
Almond Milk -- 1 cup

1,345 calories
44 grams fat
151 grams protein

Drinks for the day
Water 80 ounces
Diet soda 32 ounces

Well, that's it for today, Day 3 of TEMPTATION WEEK. Thanks for stopping by!

P.S. I'm trying to see how many folks I can get to read my blog, so please feel free to share this with your friends on FB, via Twitter, and elsewhere. And leave any questions or comments you have in the comment section -- I try to respond to each one!

Tuesday, March 22, 2016


This must be test week. Last night we (meaning, everyone in the family but ME) had chili, which is one of my favorite foods.

Tonight "we" one-upped that, with perhaps my absolute favorite food. Tacos. I can polish off a dozen tacos in a single sitting, and sometimes still want more. If you gave me a choice of nearly any food, I'd select tacos. I'd take them over ice cream, doughnuts, pizza, chili, hot dogs, hamburgers, steak (well, most of the time), maybe even lobster and crab.

Well, okay, the lobster and the crab might edge them out only because those would be such a rarity.

But you get the idea. I really, really, really like tacos. When I walked in the door tonight, the scent of taco meat cooking on the stove top enveloped me, conjuring images of tacky little Mexican restaurant wall decorations, mariachi music playing over the speakers, all-you-can eat baskets of tortilla chips with salsa, and a big giant plate of tacos.

Last night, I made the mistake of lingering in the kitchen, hovering over the pots of chili, looking longingly at the bubbling concoction, which led to me very nearly wrecking the diet for the day. Nearly. But, as I mentioned in my blog yesterday, I turned away the temptation, taking only a single taste (well, okay, I had another after I posted the blog, but that was just two spoonfuls, and they weren't even big spoons).


I walked through the kitchen, glanced at the taco meat, then proceeded to dress, go to the gym and ride 14 miles on the exercise bike.

Then I came home, had a couple of lean turkey burgers (just the meat, no buns, cheese, or anything else) and some low-fat pork-n-beans.


Anyway, that was my evening.

Now, for my exercise and diet for the day...

Stationary Bike, 42 minutes (22 on lvl 5, rest on lvl 4)
14 miles
425 calories burned

Eats for the day...

Two whole eggs
Lean ham -- 2 ounces

Bottom round steak -- 4 ounces
Mixed Asian Veggies -- 1 cup

Fat-free Greek Yogurt

Lean turkey patties -- 2 (again, just the bare patties)
Pork-n-beans -- half a can.

Totals for the day
Calories -- 1,010
Fat -- 43 grams
Protein -- 133 grams

Water -- 80 ounces
Diet Soda -- 24 ounces

And that's about it for the day. Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, March 21, 2016

Tomorrow Never Comes

Given that yesterday (Sunday) was an off day, I decided I'd try to go just a little light on the eating today, a plan that was working quite well until I arrived home after a looooong day at work to find a big pot of chili on the stove.


One of my favorite foods.

So I decided to, you know, have just a bit. Maybe a bowl. Or two. After all, I've done quite well on this little diet and exercise program, lost weight pretty fast, so one evening off the diet won't hurt, right? I can always go back strict tomorrow morning.

And that's when I stopped.

I've mentioned in some of my other blogs that I'm the KING of up and down dieting. In my very first post, way back on March 9 that I had hit 279 on the scales a few days earlier, something like 80 to 100 pounds over what I should weigh.

Maybe in some later posts I'll go into the reasons, some of the things driving me to eat over the years, but one thing suddenly stood out for me -- one of my problems over the years, one of the things that have undercut other weight loss attempts, was the fact I was always willing to go all-out, work hard in the gym, be super-strict on the diet -- tomorrow.

There was always a reason to say I'd start tomorrow.

Problem is, if you're not really willing to do what has to be done today, tomorrow never comes.

So I didn't eat any chili tonight. (Well, okay, I had ONE bite). There will be a tomorrow -- some tomorrow, down the road, I'll hit my ideal weight, I'll be 80, 90, maybe a hundred pounds lighter than I was at the beginning of this -- and on that day I'll eat all the chili I want. Or pizza. Or doughnuts (though I won't quit the nutrition and exercise plan, it'll just change, because I don't want to do this yo-yo thing any more, either).

Until then, though. except for the occasional planned free day, I won't be putting things off until tomorrow. I'll keep eating right today.

Now, for my day's eating and exercise.

Exercise -- I did both weight training and cardio today, although the cardio was a little shorter after having done the weight training.

Stationary bike
25 minutes (9 at lvl 5, the rest at lvl 4)
8.5 miles
350 calories

Weight Training
Back and biceps

Seated Row
130 pounds, 1 set for 10 reps
200 pounds, 4 sets, 8 reps each

Lat pulldowns
100 pounds, 1 set x 10 reps
90 pounds, 1 set x 8 reps

Curl-bar curl
40 pounds, 1 set x 10 reps
70 pounds, 3 sets x 8 reps each

Food for the day

Greek Yogurt

Bottom round steak, 5 ounces
Mixed veggies, 1 cup


Boiled chicken -- 6 ouncs
Mixed Veggies -- 1 cup

Second Dinner
Protein Drink

Total for day
Calories 1,026
Fat -- 26 grams
Protein -- 139 grams

Water -- 60 ouncs
Diet soda -- 36 ounces

That's all for today. Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, March 20, 2016

A Day Off? What's This?

Well, Day 12 is coming to a close, and I decided to take the day off, both from exercising and dieting.

Many weight-loss plans suggest an off day or meal here and there. The old Weight Watchers, way back before they started the point system, suggested a meal off each week. Body for Life, which I happen to think is the best, most complete nutrition and fitness plan around (if you ignore all the attempts to sell the mostly worthless supplements that you really don't need), suggests a full day off each week.

I had thought about waiting until Easter to take an off day, but decided now, after 11 solid days on the program (and about 16 pounds lost), to take an off day, and then take another one on Easter (big family gathering and lunch planned that day). Afterward, I'll probably do two weeks or so before another one.

Why are off days important?

Well, for a number of reasons. On the exercise front, this would have been a cardio day today. My plan was to do cardio today, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday this week. Now, I'll do Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. So, overall, I won't be doing any less cardio.

My legs were a little fatigued after this past week, and I know from experience (remember, the KING of yo-yo weight loss and gain), that it's okay -- even good -- to be worn out and sore from hard work, but when you start to feel that fatigue that comes from repeated use over days, it's time to take a break. Besides, even the best workout programs will tell you that the rest and recovery from exercise is as important, if not more important, than the actual exercise. And, since one of my sisters thinks I need to take it easy because I'm old (even though I am the baby of the family), I'll now be able to tell her I took her advice.

As for the food, when you say off day, a lot of people immediately think "pig-out" day. An off day can be that, but you have to be careful about pigging out -- you can undo a lot of hard work if you really, really go overboard.

As much as an off day is a time to eat a little more, or some bad stuff you can't eat on the strict healthy days, it's also a time to just relax. On my eating routine, I plan out my meals, measuring and weighing the food, keeping track of what I'm eating, when, how many calories, how much protein, and so forth. That will get even stricter a month or so down the road, once the initial weight loss has slowed.

So an off day can just be a break for you mind as much as anything -- not worrying about planning the meals, measuring everything out. Just eating.

Did I eat too much today? Yes. Though today's too much was far, far less than I would have eaten in a normal day just a couple of weeks ago. My off day for food consisted of a few cookies, a couple of pieces of pizza, and a trip to a Mexican restaurant for dinner.

Along with a banana for breakfast, that's all I had today. I have to say, though, even though I got a smaller meal at the restaurant than I usually get there, I was still STUFFED afterward -- I've gotten used to eating smaller meals!

But, off day is over. I'm cooking and planning out the food for the week, and tomorrow morning I'll be at it again.

Day 11 Report --- Losing Weight, Getting In Shape!

Well, for the second day in a row I'm publishing this one really, really late -- in fact, my Day 11 report, which was supposed to be for Saturday, isn't posting until Sunday morning.

Not to worry, it's the content of the report that's most important, not the timing, right?

Anyway, today I spent watching a lot of basketball, doing some writing, and, of course, getting a healthy does of exercise.

My workout for Saturday was cardio, and I'll jump right in here giving you the workout and calories breakdown for the day.

Cardio -- Stationary Bike
45 minutes (20 minutes at lvl 5, the rest at lvl 4)
15 miles
485 calories

Food for the day:


Fish (pollock) -- 4 ounces
Baked potato -- 6 ounces
Diet butter

5 ounces dark meat chicken

Eggs -- 2 whole
Lean ham -- 2 ounces
Hash Browns (no oil) -- 1 cup

Chicken -- 2 ounces (just had a hankering for a bit of something to eat)

Total for day
1270 calories
48 fat
91 protein.

Water - 70 ounces
Diet soda -- 30 ounces

Probably a little low for calories, horribly low on the protein.

Sorry I don't have a lot more today, but as you know, I'm running behind!

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Ack! The LATE Day 10 Report (Okay, This Is Day 11, But I Won't Tell If You Don't)

Well, I missed getting my daily report out yesterday -- though it was NOT because I had a bad day. Just really, really long. Watching basketball really takes it out of you!

Seriously, I just didn't get the blog done until really late, and I figured all of my fans would be long-gone to bed, so I thought maybe I should wait until today to post Friday's news.

Anyway, Friday was a good day -- at home on a basketball-watching vacation day again, so the routine was a little off, but all was good. Since I'm posting a day late, I'll just give you a quick rundown,

Workout -- weight training
Chest, shoulders and triceps

Barbell bench press
135 pounds, 1 set of 10 reps
185 pounds, 4 sets of 8 reps each

Incline barbell bench press
115 pounds, 1 set of 10 reps

Machine seated chest flyes
115 pounds, 2 sets 12 reps each

Seats Barbell Press
65 pounds, 1 set 10 reps
105 pounds, 1 set 8 reps

Seated Side Raise (machine)
95 pounds
2 sets, 10 reps each

Tricep pressodwn
150 pounds, 2 sets 12 reps each
150 pounds, 1 set 10 reps

Seated Crunches in the ab machine
95 pounds, 2 sets, 15 reps each

Now, for my food

Greek Yogurt

Lean Pork Chop -- 6.25 ounces
Bake potato -- 7 ounces
Diet Butter

Boiled chicken breast -- 4 ounces
Mozz cheese -- 1/4 cup

Chili Verde (I told you there was a lot left over!)
Mozz Cheese -- 1/3 cup
Corn torilla wraps --2 of them

Granola Cereal - 3/4 cup
Almond Milk -- 1 cup

Total for the Day
1,445 calories
48 grams fat
139 grams protein

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Day 9: Combining workouts

Well, this is Day 9, and I'm doing pretty well overall. As I mentioned yesterday, I lost 11 pounds in the first week, and I'm feeling pretty good overall.

The biggest two things today have been: first the fact that I've been home all day, almost like a weekend day, so my schedule's been off a bit, and I will be again tomorrow (two vacation days for the NCAA Basketball Tournament!); and second, today is the first day I combined weight training and cardio.

That wasn't actually in the plans, with my original idea just to do a regular weight workout. But, after I was done I was feeling pretty good, and the stationary bike at the gym was open, so why not?

The eating, as you'll see, has been a little different, with my calorie count up a little and my fat content up a lot. That's because it's St. Patrick's Day! That means corn-beef brisket, and this year the story didn't have any of the good, higher-quality ones, so the ones we got were a little on the high-fat side. Well, even the better ones are high in fat, but these were really high!

Otherwise, it's been a decent day for eating.

Here's the scoop so far:


Stationary Bike
23 minutes (13 Minutes at level 5, the rest at level 4)
8 miles
355 calories

Weight training (back, biceps)

Seat row
130 pounds -- 1 set, 10 reps
200 pounds -- 2 sets, 8 reps each
190 pounds -- 2 sets, 8 reps

Lat pulldown
90 pounds -- 2 sets, 10 each

Curl bar curls
40 pounds -- 1 set, 10 reps
70 pounds -- 2 sets, 8 reps
60 pounds -- 1 set, 8 reps

Eggs - 1 whole, 2 whites
Whole Wheat Torilla

Lean Pork Chop -- 4 ounces

First Dinner
Chili verde (we had a lot of that leftover the other night)
Rice -- 1 cup

Second Dinner
Corn beef brisket -- 7 ounces
Baked potato -- 7 ounces
diet butter

Late Snack
Corn beef brisket -- 3 ounces

Water -- 50 ounces (so far, will update)
diet soda -- 24 ounces

Total so far
1,735 calories
89 grams of fat (told you it was high)
143 grams of protein

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

First Week Weigh-In...

Well, I'm guessing the little graphic there is a clue that it was a good weigh-in. I wasn't sure, especially after coming off of no exercise yesterday and eating that popcorn last night, but still, when I stepped onto the scale this morning the little digital numbers came up at 266.8 pounds -- that's exactly 11 pounds lost in one week!

Needless to say, I was happy with that result. I'm not getting too excited, though -- I've done this before. Remember, I'm the KING of of yo-yo weight loss. I've dropped 10, 15, 20 pounds many many times, only to gain that back, and then some.

But this might be the first time I've lost 11 in a single week, so I'm off to a pretty good start, I'd say.

Now, for my workout and food for the day. I had initially had a weight training workout planned for today, but I workout with my son often, and he wasn't able to go to the gym today, so I switched and tonight did the cardio I would have done Thursday, and tomorrow I'll do the weight lifting workout I was going to do tonight.

Make sense?

It's just as well, because I've been dragging all day. Long, long day yesterday (it was primary day in North Carolina, where I work), and I'd already been running way short on sleep all week, so I've been really tired. As much as I dislike cardio, it's easier than going down to the gym and lifting weights when you're dead tired.

So, here are the stats for the day:

Workout -- Cardio
Stationary Bike
33 minutes (13 minutes at lvl 5, 20 minutes at lvl 4)
11 miles
355 calories burned

Food for the day

2 whole eggs
1 ounce lean ham

Chicken breast -- 5 ounces
Homemade BBQ sauce
Rice -- 3/4 cup
Veggie -- 1/2 cup

Lowfat Greek Yogurt

Chili verde

Second Dinner
Lean ham -- 6 ounces
Bake potato -- 5 ounces
Diet butter -- 1 tablespoon

Water -- 60 ounces (though I'll probably have some more before bed)
Diet soda -- 36 ounces (caffeine!)

Totals for the day
1,300 calories
35 grams fat
123 grams protein

Overall, low on protein, low on carbs, probably a tad low on calories.

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Mr. Miyagi was wrong -- it IS all about the belt

Those of you of a certain age (or those of any age who have good taste in movies) will recall this scene. I'm here to tell you Mr. Miyagi was 100 percent wrong about the belt. It DOES matter.

Okay, I'll admit that, for the purposes of Mr. Miyagi's lesson to Danielson, maybe brown, black, or a canvas belt from JC Penney doesn't matter. But for my purposes, the belt matters most right now.

Let me explain. I have a plain brown leather belt (Wal-mart instead of JC Penney, and I'm not even sure it's real leather). I don't really know the size, other than it's BIG -- it has to be to fit me. Like many belts, it has multiple holes -- in this case 5 holes.

Well, a while back I grew out of my belt. It simply wouldn't go all the way around me enough in order for me to buckle it. A few weeks earlier my wife had gone out to buy me a few shirts that were larger, since I had grown out of many of the ones I'd been wearing.

I wasn't going to get a new belt. I decided I was going to either just keep getting so much fatter all I could do was wear sweat pants with an elastic waist band, or I was going to fit back into that belt. I went the wrong way on that for a couple of weeks, gaining a couple of more pounds before finally starting this exercise and weight loss plan, but I finally managed to get rolling, six days ago.

Yesterday, at the start of Day 5, I decided to slip the belt on and see how much further I had to go before I could wear it. Guess what? I wore it to work yesterday, and again today.

Now, to say it actually fits would be stretching things a little (almost as much as I'm stretching the belt right now). It's a tad snug, even on the first hole. That's okay. Being uncomfortable is a great reminder that I need to stay focused on the diet and the working out.

And the fact that it fits at all is a milestone I hadn't expected to reach for another week or so.

But yes, I'll say again, the belt DOES matter.

If you're working on weight loss goals, pick out an article of clothing, like I did. Don't get so caught up in your body weight as simply finding some tangible thing you can measure by that means something. Pick belt, a shirt, a pair of pants, anything that you're just a little too big for, and then hit the exercise and workout plan as hard as you can, with that article of clothing in mind.

Don't pick something that's three sizes away, pick something that's one size away, or maybe a half-size, that you honestly can't wear at present, and then work. In a week, or two, or maybe three, you'll feel really good about fitting into that item, and that will help give you motivation to keep at it.

For me, I'm now thinking toward hole #2 on the old belt.

Now, for my workout and diet today....well, just as soon as I tell you all about how great things are going, I come to this and have to say I FAILED today.

Sort of.

My plan has been, at least for the first couple of weeks, to do weight training three days a week and cardio the other four. Today was one of those other four, and my intention was to get up early this morning and head to the gym for 30 minutes on the exercise bike.

I knew I was in trouble when I woke this morning and there was light filtering in through the blinds. Seems I turned off both of my alarms this morning when they went off, never really waking in the process. I wasn't late for work or anything like that, but the cardio was shot. I would have done it at night any other night, but we went to see some Irish singers and musicians tonight, so no cardio. :(

Even worse, while I was there, I had a small bag of popcorn. No butter, of course, and it was a smallish bag, but it was popped like the old-time theaters used to do, in oil that makes it really good even without the butter.

Having said all of that, here was my food for the day:

Eggs -- 1 whole, 2 whites
Ham -- 2 ounces

Whole wheat noodles -- 3/4 of serving (about 3.2 ounces on a scale)
Lean pork -- 4 ounces
Veggies -- 3/4 cup
Sesame oil -- 1 teaspoon
Soy sauce (reduced sodium) -- 1 tablespoon


Boiled chicken breast -- 4 ounces
Mozzarella cheese -- 1/4 cup

Total for the day so far (I'll probably eat something else before I go to bed, and I'll update this if I do).

964 calories
28 grams of fat
89 grams of protein
60 ounces of water
34 ounces of diet soda

Plus the dreaded popcorn! (most every source I check say a small bag of popcorn has around 250 calories and 20 grams of fat, which would leave me within the total calories that are acceptable, but certain way too high on the fat and too low on the protein for the day)

Well, that's all for now folks. Thanks for stopping by. If you have any questions or comments, put them down in the comment section and I'll respond!

Monday, March 14, 2016

Day 6 -- Busy, busy, busy

So, where you wondering where my post was for the day? I've been running about as hard as I can since getting out of bed. I work fulltime as a newspaper editor, and some days are just waaaaayyyy too busy. Not to mention that tomorrow is primary day in North Carolina, where I work, so that's kept me hopping.

A lot of days are going to be like this -- just one post, instead of two, most likely toward the end of the day. Hopefully, I'll be a little earlier in the evening than I have been today.

I did NOT let the busy schedule stop me from working out, though, as well as staying strict with the food. I'm really dragging right now, though, so I'm just going to post my eating for the day, the workout, then I'm off to bed! Tomorrow I might chat a little about JC Penney and the all-knowing Mr. Miyagi.

Okay, for my workout today. I did chest, shoulders and triceps.

Barbell Bench Press
135 pounds, 1 set, 10 reps
185 pounds, 2 sets 8 reps each
175 pounds, 2 sets, 8 reps each

Incline barbell bench press
95 pounds, 1 set, 10 reps
115 pounds, 1 set, 10 reps

Seat Machine Chest Flyes
110 pounds, 2 sets, 12 reps each.

Seat Barbell Overhead Press
65 pounds, 1 set, 10 reps
95 pounds, 1 set 8 reps
95 pounds, 1 set 6 reps

Seated Machines Reverse Flyes
125 pounds, 2 sets, 12 reps each

Cable pressdown

150 pounds, 1 set of 12 reps
140 pounds, 1 set of 12 reps
120 pounds, 1 set of 12 reps

Ab work
Seated crunch
95 pounds
1 set, 15 reps
1 set, 12 reps

Now for the food.

Eggs -- 1 whole, 2 whites
Ham -- 2 ounces

Lean pork chop, 4 ounces
Brown long grain rice, 1 cup
Mixed veggies, 3/4 cup


Fish (pollock) -- 4 ounces
Rice -- 3/4 cup
Veggies -- 1/2 cup

Second Dinner
Protein Drink

Boiled chicken breast -- 4 ounces
Mozzarella cheese -- 1/6 cup

Totals for the day

1,354 calories
27 grams fat
139 grams protein
80 ounces of water
24 ounces of diet soda (that's LOWER folks!).

And that's all for the night!

Sunday, March 13, 2016

My LATE Day 5 Report

Well, I'm running way behind with this end-of-day report. Kinda busy for a Sunday, so I'll be short and sweet and to the point.

Workout for the Day
Cardio -- Stationary Bike
40 minutes
12.5 miles
401 calories burned (because the first 400 are nothing, it's that extra one that counts!)

I was going to just go until I hit 12 miles, but I was close to the 400-calorie mark, and, well, I couldn't just stop at that point.

Diet for the day.
Way low on overall calories, but I guess if I'm going to be off one way or other, being too low is best.

Yep, that's it.

Lean pork chops -- 6.15 ounces
Baked Potato -- 7 ounches
Diet Butter

Fried pollock -- 4 ounces (coated with a batter made up off corn meal and egg-white)
Pinto Beans -- 1 cup

Salmon Patty -- 4 ounces

Total for the day
776 calories
22 grams of fat
105 grams of protein

70 ounces of water
30 ounces of diet soda

Day 5 -- A Lost Hour and a High Blood Pressure Day

Well folks, I woke up this morning feeling pretty good -- the soreness has mostly gone, I'm already sleeping better with my diet changes, but I just keep feeling like something's missing, something is gone, something...Hey, I lost an hour!

Guess everyone else did as well. Most people complain about losing an hour of sleep. Me? I forgot to set my alarm, so I lost an hour of the day by sleeping later. Well, actually, I didn't sleep later, it's just that the clock changed to make it seem like I slept an hour later.

Oh well.

Now for the high blood-pressure day: I'm doing our taxes today. I least I promised my wife I would, so I suspect the next week will be rather unpleasant for me of I renege on that one. There's nothing inherently stressful in the information -- I know how much we made, how much we paid in taxes, and so forth, so there will be no surprises. I just hate doing them. Dread doing them. I hate having to go from one form to another, from one instruction book to another, back and forth. I think when the tax code was written, the instructions given to those who did the drafting went something like this: We want you to make this as confusing, as non-nonsensical, as inefficient as possible.

And if that's true, the people who drafted, and continually update, the tax code have been wildly successful.

Anyway, that's what's up for today. I'll be back later to update you on eating and cardio and all that good stuff for the day.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Day 4: Irish Batboys, Food and Workout Report

In keeping with the upcoming St. Patrick's Day, I'll describe how I woke up today by saying for just the briefest moment my arms felt like a thousand little Leprechauns had spent the night beating my arms with tiny little Irish baseball bats.

Both biceps and triceps, along with my forearms, where quite sore. I had expected my legs to be sore from doing that set of squats last night, but I guess the weight was so light that really didn't bother me, but man, my arms were stiff and sore.

Most of the soreness went away pretty quickly once I got up and moved around, and especially after I went to the gym for some cardio. They're still a little stiff right now, but nothing too bad. Ah, the joys of starting an exercise program. I suspect I've gotten by the worst of the soreness, though I'll have a little more over the next week or so I'm sure.

Not a lot to report, though. Like I said in my post this morning, weekends can be tough on weight loss efforts because the routine is so different. I ended up way light on my eating through most of the day, which let me eat a little more than I would have otherwise at night. Anyway, here's the details for the day.

Workout -- Cardio

Stationary Bike, 30 minutes at levels 4-5 (mostly 4)
10.5 miles
325 calories

Eating for the day


Protein Drink

BBQ Chicken -- 5 ounces
Noodles -- 3/4-cups

Fat Free Greek Yogurt

Chili Verde on Cornmeal tortillas

Late Snack
More Chili Verde, without the tortillas

Water -- 40 ounces
Diet soda -- 24 ounces

Total for the day (so far, I'll update later if I have a snack tonight)
Calories -- 1,636
Fat -- 37 grams
Protein -- 158 grams

I'll be back to update later, but for now...ACC Basketball Championship -- Go Hoos!

Day 4 check-in: Losing weight and, well, still sore...

Today is the first day of this new plan where I'm not in my regular routine of getting up, going to work, being there all day, coming home, etc. That can be a more dangerous time when starting a new diet. It's not like we have tacos and pizza lying around the house in some buffet line ready for me to gobble it all up, but it's just different, easier to get off schedule with eating.

And it's also easier to sit around and watch basketball tournaments, which is okay except my old habits have always been to eat while watching basketball. Eat while waiting on the games to start. Eat after the games are over...

For now, though, I'm heading down to the gym to do some cardio. After that, I have some writing to do, some work for my regular job, and some basketball to watch (not to mention some laundry to do, cooking and planning for the week coming up, but that might wait until Sunday).

Anyway, just checking in for the morning...will be back later to outline my eating and working out for the day. Oh, yeah, I weighed myself today to see how it's been going since I started this and...oh, well, maybe you guys should come back later to get those results!

Friday, March 11, 2016

Day 3 food and exercise (and maybe overdoing it a bit)

Okay, just for the record, I'm really not overdoing it, but that was for my sister, who thinks I'm too old to exercise like this!

Now, for the day, I had a little challenge that I mostly failed. That challenge? Someone in my office came around today with a big old bag of candy -- those little miniature smaller-than-bite size pieces of Snickers and Twix and Three Musketeers. I didn't want to be rude, so I took four pieces, thinking I'd just put them aside and then get rid of them later.

Well, I got rid of them all right...three of them anyway (I don't like Twix). Thankfully, those are so small they don't really carry a lot of calories (between 43 and 50 calories each, depending upon which listing you use. I think the 43-calorie website is much more reputable).

Otherwise, my biggest problem today has not been eating enough.

For my workout, I did back and biceps. Eventually I'll add a leg workout to the mix, but right now, just getting started, I'm going to get used to the workouts and the cardio before getting into much work with the legs.

Here was my workout for the day:

Seated Row
1 set 120 pounds, 10 reps
3 sets at 190 pounds, 10 reps each set.

Late Pulldowns
90 pounds, 2 sets of 10 (That's a little light, but I have a bit of a forearm issue that sometimes limits how much I can do on certain lifts, and this is one of the lifts I have to be easy with).

Curl Bar Curls (It's a squiggly shorter barbell).
40 pounds -- 1 set of 10
70 pounds, 1 set x 10 reps
60 pounds, 1 set x 10 reps
50 pounds, 1 set 10 reps

Legs(Okay, I wasn't going to do any legs, but the gym was nearly empty tonight, the squat rack was just sitting there empty, so I had to do 1 set. It's been a year since I did squats, so it was an easy, light set).
135 pounds, 1 set x 10 reps.

Ab crunch machine
95 pounds, 2 sets, 15 reps each

Now for the food.

Eggs (2 whole)
Lean pork chop (2.2 ounces)

Chicken -- 5 ounces
BBQ sauce -- 1/2 cup
Mixed veggies -- 2/3 cup

Big salad with 1/6 cup mozzarella cheese, olives, and 1 ounce lean ham

First Dinner
Lean pork chop -- 5 ounces
Mixed veggies -- 2/3 cup

Misc. Snack -- those dreaded little mini candy pieces.

Second Dinner -- haven't had that one yet. I'll add the info later

Granola cereal 2/3 cup
Almond Milk -- 1 cup

80 ounces of water
32 ounces of Diet Mountain Dew.

Calories -- 1,285
Fat -- 37.5 grams
Protein -- 118 grams

So far, too light in the calories, WAY too light on the protein. I need to do a better job of planning my meals.

Well, that's all for now. I'll update after my very-late second dinner. Thanks for stopping by!

Day Three -- tired and sore

Just a quick update, with more later, but Day 3 can be summed up in two words...Sore and Tired.

The soreness actually isn't as bad as I thought it would be. Most of the soreness from the chest workout on Wednesday has faded, but my triceps (back of the upper arm) are sorer today, partly from Wednesday's working and partly from Thursday cardio on the stationary bike. Sometimes, just to be different, I'll climb on the bike upside down and pedal with my arms.

Okay, not really -- but I had you wondering, didn't I?

The bike workout did contribute to the arm soreness, though. Just think -- when you're on a bike, you're leaning down on the handlebars, your weight on your arms. You're not really giving your arms a workout, but you are tensing and using the muscles. So, that's why my triceps are a little sorer today.

As for being tired, that's mostly from lack of sleep, which is one of the really bad habits I need to break. Did you know that long-term lack of sleep is a major contributing factor to high blood pressure and heart disease? Some studies have even shown it to be one of the MAJOR factors in heart disease. One day, I'll write a blog about it, citing some of those studies.

Unfortunately, I'm one of those people with too much to do (or sometimes just stupid stuff to do, like binge-watch a television show on Netflix). I'll often think "I'll just go short on sleep, what's the big deal?" Yeah, I might be sluggish and tired the next day, or have a headache, but so what? I'll just make it up on the weekend.

Well, that's actually a bad, bad thing to do from a health standpoint, and it's something I need to change. But this week I've already started tackling the bad eating habit and the lack-of-exercise habit, so the sleep will have to wait. Besides, this week is the ACC basketball tournament, and...well...come on, it's BASKETBALL! I'll work on the sleep next week, after the tournament, because, after all, it's BASKETBALL.

That's all for now, I'll post later regarding today's workout and eating. Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Day 2 workout, eating, and more SORENESS

Well, the end of Day 2 is drawing to a close, and I have two things to say.

I'm sore and I'm hungry!

Not much I can do about the soreness -- I was right in my post this morning, the soreness has gotten worse through the day. And I've done this enough to know it'll be even worse tomorrow.

As for the hunger, I'm going to get a snack soon. The worst thing you can do, I think, is let yourself stay hungry while trying to lose weight. That's a recipe for binge eating!

Anyway, here's my workout and food for the day.

The exercise was simple
Stationary bike, 30 minutes
Level 4 resistance
9.75 miles covered
312 calories burned

Now the food:

Eggs -- 1 whole, 2 whites
Lean ham -- 1 1/2 ounces

Sesame Chicken and Noodle (I'll post the recipe at the end of today's blog)

Big Salad (lettuce, cabbage, carrots, mushrooms, olives, bit of cheese, 1-1/2 ounces of lean ham)

First Dinner (I sound like a hobbit saying that)
Rice -- 3/4 cup
Boiled chicken breast -- 5 ounces
Veggies -- 3/4 cup

Second Dinner
BBQ chicken on noodles, which consisted of:
Chicken breast -- 5 ounces
Homemade BBQ sauce
Curly noodles -- 1 serving.

Salmon 4.7 ounces (yes, that's an odd snack, but it was in the fridge, already cooked, so why not?)
Fat free Greek Yogurt

Total for the day
1,861 calories
47.45 fat
177 grams of protein
Water -- 70 ounces
Diet soda -- 36 ounces

Notes and thoughts. I wouldn't have done the sesame chicken and noodles at lunch had I known we were doing the BBQ chicken over noodles at dinner -- that's a little too heavy on the pasta/carbs, and too many calories overall. And I was high on fat, though a third of it was from the salmon, which really is a healthy fat. I'm still a little low on protein -- I should, ideally, be in the 180+ gram range.

Sesame Chicken recipe (my version, for a single serving):
Whole wheat noodles -- 1 serving (4.2 ounces of cooked noodles)
Veggies -- 3/4 cup
Chicken breast -- 5 ounces
Sauce -- 1 teaspoon sesame oil mixed with 1 tablespoon reduced sodium soy sauce.

Now, if I were cooking this in a big pot for multiple people, it would be the same basic ingredients -- noodles, chicken, and veggies (frozen mixed veggies, plus some chopped up onions and peppers cooked and put in). The sauce, however, would be different. It would be maybe a half-cup of soy sauce, 1/3-cup of honey and two to three tablespoons of sesame oil. You have to mix it up really well, because the honey tends to sink to the bottom. Once the sauce is mixed up really well, pour it over the whole thing and mix it up really well. If you really want to get fancy, you can throw a couple of tablespoons of sesame seeds on the whole thing and mix it up some more. If you really like the sesame taste, you can add a little more oil. If you like it sweet, add a little more honey.

Well, that's it for now folks -- thanks for stopping by! Any comments or questions, just leave in the comment section below and I'll respond.

Day 2...just one word to describe today.....

Well, I'll be on later to give more details about how it's gone today, what I ate, and the workout.

But for now, I have that one word I promised:


Okay, it's not THAT bad. It's certainly not as bad as I expected. Last night on about the fourth set of dumbbell bench presses and my chest muscles felt like they about to explode, I was already dreading today and how sore I'd be. I'm tight, and a little sore, and that seems to be getting worse as the day goes along, but overall not too bad.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

First Day Report -- March 9

Okay, one of the things I hope to do is write up a daily report...well, each day I guess. Just listing what I've eaten, the total nutritional breakdown (protein, fat, etc.), and a summary of the exercise for the day, along with my morning weigh-in results for the day.

So, here goes.

Morning weigh-in -- 277.8 pounds (that's 277 plus a decimal point that's not showing up so well)

Eggs (2 whites + one whole)

Mid-morning snack
Greek Yogurt (fat free)

Rice (3/4 cup)
Mixed Veggies (1/2 cup)
Flank Steak (4.4. ounces)

Afternoon snack
Big salad -- just mixture of lettuces/carrots along with olives and mushrooms
Dressing (2 tablespoons)

First Dinner
Rice (3/4 cup)
Boiled chicken breast (6 ounces)
Mixed veggies (1/2 cup)

Second Dinner
Spaghetti, which consisted of 1-1/4 servings of whole wheat noodles, 3/4 cup sauce, and a bit of Parmesean.

Late Snack
Half-cup of low-fat cottage cheese (yum yum!)
Two sour pineapple rings (well, they're not supposed to be sour, but they are!)

Okay, so far, I've got a grand total of:
1,633 calories
32.9 grams of fat
145 grams of protein (way too low, really)

In addition, I've had 80 ounces of water and 32 ounces of diet Mountain Dew.

Now, for my workout
A quick note; I rest about a minute between each set, sometimes left. While there's a lot of sets here, it really only takes about 25-30 minutes to do these if you just keep moving, keep working. None of that sitting around and doing one set every ten minutes like some folks in the gym.

Dumbbell Bench Press
50 pound dumbbells, 1 set, 10 reps
70 pound dumbbells, 3 sets, 10 reps each
70 pounds, 1 set, 8 reps.
Barbell Incline Press
115 pounds, 2 sets, 10 reps each

Machine Overhead Press
105 pounds, 10 reps
95 pounds, 10 reps

Side Lat Raise Machine
95 pounds, 2 sets of 10 reps each

Lying Curl Bar Extensions (forehead busters)
40 pounds, 2 sets of 10 reps

Machine Press Down
245 pounds, 1 set of 12 reps

Ab work
Machine crunch, 95 pounds, 15 reps.

That's all folks. I'm wiped out!

If you have any comments or questions, leave them below and I'll respond!

A Fat Boy Decides It's Time To Change...

I woke up a couple of days ago -- a Monday no less -- and discovered I was fat.

Really, really fat.

Okay, I didn't wake up and suddenly find I was trapped in some morbidly obese body, it was a slow process, taking years of mistreating myself to get to this point. But Monday was kind of a tipping point. Well, that and a recent picture someone took of me.

That picture -- I'll share it, but not today (That picture to your right, the little head shot of me in a blue shirt and tie -- that picture is nearly eight years old, and shows me about 64 pounds ago) -- was of a gathering with some of my wife's family, and I was absolutely astounded when I saw myself. I don't mean to suggest I didn't understand already I was fat, I mean really big, but I simply didn't quite have that imagine of myself in my head.

That was a week and a half ago. Then this week, on Monday, I stepped on the scales.

279 pounds.

I'm not a tall guy, coming in at barely 5'10".

To put a little perspective on that, when I graduated from high school I weighed 150 pounds. I'll be the first to say I was a little too light then (though I was blazing fast -- always the fastest guy on the basketball court or soccer field), but I was probably too thin. I went off to college, got fat (gained all the way up to 197 pounds), then started working out, running, eating better, and settled in at about 180 pounds. That was a good, healthy weight for me, given how much I was working out.

So, you could say I'm about 100 pounds overweight.


Maybe, I don't know. I haven't a clue what 180 would look like on me now, or 190, or even 200. I've had a lifelong struggle with weight, at least during my adult life (no problems in high school when I was playing sports, working out, running...just generally always active). My weight has gone up and done, up and down, up and down, constantly. Unfortunately, each time it goes back down, it never gets as low as last time, and when it goes up, it's always a little more than the time before.

Just last summer, in 2015, I dropped from 265 to 242 in about six weeks. Since August 1, about seven months ago, I've been in a continual climb all the way up to Monday's 279 pounds. That's more than 5 pounds a month I've been gaining. My doctor's even concerned now, though maybe I'll get into all of that later.

For now, I'll just say I'm tired of being fat, tired of being unhealthy, tired of getting out of breath doing the simplest things, tired of not sleeping well because I've eaten a ton of bad stuff just before going to bed...tired of it all.

So beginning today, I'm setting out to change a few things, mostly how I eat, how I treat myself (better sleep, more exercise). I've done this before -- I'm the KING of yo-yo dieting -- but maybe it'll be different this time. I certainly should have some better motivation (again, more on that later).

Over the coming weeks, and maybe months, I'll post here regularly on how it's going -- my weight loss, exercise gains, struggles, successes, and the like. I'll post interesting articles and information I come across regarding fitness and health. I may share blogs of other people doing something similar to what I'm doing. I'll share more of my story, how I got here, how hard it is to change, and so forth. I'll lay out what I'm eating, my workouts, what I learn along the way.

And most of all, maybe I'll encourage someone else to make some positive changes along the way.

I don't know, maybe 50 people will see this, maybe 50,000, then again maybe just me, myself, and I will be the only ones to lay eyes on this blog. Either way, I hope whoever visits finds the blog enjoyable, fun, and maybe, just maybe, helpful in their own lives.

Thanks for stopping by, and feel free to leave comments or questions in the comment section of the blog.

More later....