Category Archives: Adventure

The Blood Sugar Solution 10-day Detox

For the past 10 days, I’d been subscribed to “The Blood Sugar Solution 10-Day Detox Diet“. We also purchased “The Blood Sugar Solution 10-Day Detox Diet Cookbook” to compliment it. Suffice to say it worked. Common sense says: “Of course it did, there’s no reason why it wouldn’t.” I lost 17lbs in 10 days. I’m now at 256lbs. But now I hear people asking: “wait,what? Last time you checked in your weight you were 268.” Well, people… let me tell you a little bit about the weekend BEFORE I started this detox. Friday was a gala feast at Naumkeag Ordinary in Salem in which I ate 3 cheeseburgers (no buns), a few appetizers (that were actually pretty paleo) a half a bottle of white wine and a glass of beer. Saturday was a lovely birthday party in which I had a few bottles of cider, a few shots of hard alcohol, a lot of my wife’s cheese dip and 2 slices of pizza. Sunday morning finished me off at O’Neills of Salem where we brought a friend out to his first Full Irish Breakfast. My wife, my son and I ordered 1 each. Then when my son couldn’t finish his, we split it between my wife and I and ate it. By Monday morning weigh in, I was 273lbs. That Friday morning before the weekend I was 263lbs. For a 3 day gain of 10lbs.

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford

I know buddy, I know…

One part of this detox involved a detox of social media and news. There was simply not a better time for me to start this in the face of what’s going on this election season (I’ll stop there before I alienate people or start stressing myself out…). It was definitely nice to get  away from the stresses of facebook, the 24-hour news cycle and a lot of general negativity that was surrounding me.

The main part of it is simple paleo eating and daily workouts. The basis for the plan is to remove all sugar, caffeine, grains, starchy vegetables and beans from your diet. The main idea is that sugar is as addictive as drugs. There’s a lot of exposition that explains how your brain’s addiction centers actually get more activity from sugar and even artificial sweeteners than it does from cocaine. It’s a lot of fun science if you’re into that and it’s mostly sound from my perspective. It gets a little preachy and if you’re already paleo or primal, this might not be the plan for you. If you were paleo/primal and fell off the wagon, this one should hitch you right back on. If you were NEITHER of these things this is a GREAT starting point. It ignores the ‘cult of paleo’ and cuts right to the meat of things. Sugar is killing you and making you do things you don’t want to do. He coins the term ‘diabesity’ in this book as diabetes caused by obesity. I know when I first started my journey, I was definitely in that category and that’s what got me to start it in the first place: I didn’t want to get diabetes.

If you’re familiar with the Whole30 or a Whole9, the food is nearly identical. The one interesting thing about the Blood Sugar Solution is that they NEVER ONCE CALL IT PRIMAL/PALEO despite it being pretty much 100% to a T. I think the MAIN reason for this is because there’s also vegetarian options that include things that wouldn’t work as paleo. So good on them. It also distances themselves from the paleo movement which can be a turnoff for a lot of people as it has become a little militant. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gotten someone commenting on my facebook page about how something I ate wasn’t 100% paleo or primal. I get it, I’m not perfect. The food in the cookbook and the plan was great, but the recipes were not very well laid out. Make sure you read and re-read a recipe before you start in on it. I can’t tell you how many times I screwed something up because half of the recipe was on one page and the other was on the opposite page and I’m scrambling to wash raw fish off my hands so I can flip a page back to see what herbs he’s suggesting I toss in with it.

The daily regiment is pretty simple: Weigh yourself, measure yourself, take your blood pressure, take your blood sugar, do 30minutes of exercise (I did incline walking), PGX Fiber pill, multi vitamin, Vitamin D, fish oil and a smoothie from the book. I stuck with this lovely concoction that was made with a Kiwi, 1/4 of an avocado, chia seeds, kale, water, ice and mint. My wife and son hated it, so that’s what I stuck with so they could enjoy theirs without me digging into their stash of ingredients. That said, there’s was superior to mine, but I enjoyed mine enough. The good news is that it really did stave off hunger. Also, the going cold-turkey on sugar really had an immediate effect on my cravings. I wasn’t going to the kitchen and chowing down on things I shouldn’t. I wasn’t even opening the counters at work to LOOK. I also stopped taking my blood sugar after the 3rd day. It was in the low 80s and the pain of pricking my finger was impeding my work as my fingers ached all day. My blood pressure was thankfully normal before and throughout.

Lunches were a variety of options, but I stuck with the least stressful: salad and protein. I made a mixed green salad with carrots and tomatoes and slapped 2 hard boiled eggs on it and my wife’s homemade greek dressing (which is paleo). Snacks would be a small handful of nuts (about 12). Dinner was varied and we stuck to the plan for 6 days. By the 7th day, we got a little more adventurous and looked at the cookbook for ideas as some of the suggestions for days 7-10 didn’t have us excited. I will tell you now, it’s mostly chicken and SMALL fish (ie, no tuna). There was one red meat meal that we ate on day 8 where I got a REALLY nice aged ribeye that my wife and I split and enjoyed thoroughly. The good news is the chicken meals were fantastic. There was a great chicken soup lunch option that we made twice. There were some great cod cakes (which I massacred when I attempted the 2nd time we ate it) and some other good fish suggestions. I wasn’t in love with the first day fish suggestion, but that might have been because I bought shitty salmon.

stupid-human-brain_o_1224189Overall, I was very happy with the food. The exercise was good too. Of course I lost weight, that’s what happens when you eat right and exercise. I did have recurring nightmares of cheating badly on the plan though. It was very strange. Everyday I’d wake up with a stomach full of guilt because my brain ate a bunch of pizza and beer while it slept. Stupid human brain. I’m pretty sure we’re going to continue to make this kind of food for another 90 day at least. Maybe make some adjustments to things so we can have steak a little more and fish a little less.

There’s also a journaling aspect to the project as well. There’s daily questions and a daily log of your food, weight, measurements, etc… It can be great for someone starting out on a paleo journey, but for me it was a lot of questions about how your dealing with your cravings and sugar addiction… and for me it wasn’t dramatic. I just stopped craving them immediately. Also, I absolutely hate writing with a pen and paper. I wish I’d just kept an online log of it. It’s a lot easier for me to jot down notes on my phone or something than to constantly be searching for that pad of paper and pen.

There was one thing on the detox that I hated: Detox baths. First off, I’m not a ‘bath’ person. At least not in my own house. I’m pretty tall and my bath doesn’t really fill very much before it hits the overflow drain… which has a bad seal and leaks into my downstairs living room. So the only bits of my body that get submerged in the water are my hips, butt and ankles… and my legs if I sit bolt upright. In the long run it makes my back and ass hurt and I tend to get cold because most of me is above the warm water. I tried to read in the tub to some minor success, but mostly I was annoyed to be lightly simmering in my shitty tub. I should have bought one of these: Bottomless Bath Overflow Drain Cover – RecyclableThen I could have gotten somewhere. I should also probably replace that gasket…

bathtoosmall

I know buddy, I know…

Otherwise I’m pretty happy with the results, the food and the plan. I’m probably going to stick to limiting my facebook usage, reducing the notifications from facebook in general, avoiding the news cycle and trying to get away from my phone and computer more. I did break away from one thing today and probably JUST for today: the morning smoothie. I missed eggs and bacon, so I got some with some peppers and onions (instead of homefries) this morning. It wasn’t as good as I had hoped… so I’ll probably go back to smoothies tomorrow. I also miss the taste of coffee and black tea, but not the caffeine that comes with it. I’ll need to figure that one out too.

So, here we are again. At the beginning of a new journey… a new, old journey. Next time I’m going to discuss my concerns about how this goes forward, my plans for what happens next and my major concerns with things like going out with friends to bars and restaurants and parties.

The Disney Dining Plan Disaster and Zero-carbing

This is kind of the opposite of what I should be doing.

This is kind of the opposite of what I should be doing.

250lbs. That’s what I got up to after my latest Disney Dining Plan trip to Walt Disney World. Incidentally, my trip was nearly ruined by stomach problems. A trip to the 50s PrimeTime Diner on a hot day which was filled with fried chicken, a milkshake for a drink AND ice cream for dessert led to the next few days with some gastric distress including waking up in the middle of the night with the feeling of acid eating it’s way through my neck. The next few days were fine as long as I wasn’t eating… Unfortunately I continued to eat because I paid for a dining plan, god damnit! Every bite would unlock some pain and pressure which would subside after a while. On the plane ride home, I had that nightmare you always have: I had to go to the bathroom REALLY bad and they never turned off the fasten seatbelts light… they did eventually. The next two days were spent at home, shitting my brains out… Nothing like getting back from a vacation that ate up 7 vacation days to have to spend another TWO at home sick.

Prior to leaving, my wife and I decided to try doing a Zero Carb diet for 30 days. My wife has a friend who went on it and had some success and she’s been having some issues that her doctors wanted her to do an AIP or other elimination diet. In this instance, we eat nothing but meat and water and some dairy. I’m hoping for a reduction in cravings and a return to behaving properly with food. I’d like to lose a little weight and also reduce my psoriasis. We started on May 17th, and we’ve had a good run so far. Lots of eggs. Lots of bacon. TONS of ribeyes. And before you have a chance to ask: yes, I’m pooping fine.

I feel pretty good. My energy is coming back. My mind is a lot clearer. My body aches less. I have more interest in actually doing things. The other good thing is that this diet works great in the summer. No one really questions when you go to a cookout and eat burgers and chicken. No one notices that you aren’t having a bun or chips or veggies. I took some of the savings we made by not going out to dinner and invested it in a great grille with the help of my dad.

I need to get back into the gym. My previous diet had me abusing my burned energy by overindulging a little. I’ve gotten more active. Hockey season has started. I’ve begun riding my bike a lot more. I’ve got a good feeling about this next 30-60 days. I think I’ll need to re-assess the Zero Carb lifestyle at that point. Many people seem to be able to live healthy with this diet indefinitely, but I may go talk to my doctor and make sure everything is in order.

Weigh In

239lbs as of 5/29/15

1 Year Off Paleo. The Battle to Get Back to 215 and Eventually Less.

Remember last June when I said I needed a kickstart? Let me tell you what happened next.

In July of 2012 I’d mentioned that I was under a lot of stress and needed AN INTERVENTION. Work was causing me a lot of stress. There were tons of things going on around the house. I was barely making enough money to get by. Working out remains a problem. I did get a bike and I sorted that all out but I don’t use it enough. I really killed myself when I said that the Paleo Adventure is over. That’s when things went bad. I’d started playing hockey but the summer season is sporadic.

Then there’s just the summer malaise in general. I did NOT survive this summer well. I went to parties and gorged on food and drink. I ate out with little regard for health and finances. It was bad. Even this past weekend was a mess of bad food choices but good times. Now I’m 240lbs again. October 2012. The last time I was that heavy. It took 2 months to drop to 230. It took another 1 month to drop to 225lbs. It took me a little more than a MONTH to go from 229 to 240… This is the sad reality of life. 3 months to lose weight that can be put back on in 1.

Here I am in a burger eating contest this summer... No, those aren't gluten free... I came in 2nd... (photo courtesy John Andrews @ socialpalatesphotography.com/)

Here I am in a burger eating contest this summer… No, those aren’t gluten free… I came in 2nd… (photo courtesy John Andrews @ socialpalatesphotography.com)

So, what’s next? Well a few things have changed in my life. I’ve gotten a new job that doesn’t feed me breakfast and lunch daily. They do have a lot of ‘snacks’ but none that are good choices. They do have some nuts and fruit, but that’s about it. I’m surrounded by food choices, but most aren’t paleo/primal. I’m making more money, so that stress is alleviated a little. They pay for a fitness plan, which means I can’t claim that I can’t afford to go the gym. I go in later which leaves more time in the morning as well to go workout. So I just have to get off my lazy ass and go do it.

I need to find a new way of life that is like my old paleo way of life. I need to prepare for things better. I need to change my mindset. This is a new adventure. My family needs to work towards a goal. A reward of some sort. Perhaps we need another Disney Adventure. We need harder, stricter goals to reach if we want to get there. We need to find a way to keep to a goal AFTER the fact as well. I need to be more active. I need to get my mind around being in control again. I need to just stop what I’m doing now and do the right thing NOW.

Here are the numbers for this new starting point:

240lbs.

Squeezing into my 36x32s.

Large shirts are tight.

On belt notch 2.

Hockey hockey hockey!

So, when I started writing this (3/20) I was still 225ish. I had made plans to start a Whole30 on 3/24 and decided to have a weekend of ‘whatever’. It started with an all you can eat flounder fry at Woodmans. By Sunday morning I was up to 234lbs. Jesus. So, just when you’ve planned for a healthy month, don’t cheat up until you start… that’s my advice. In fact, if you’re planning on doing a healthy month or something… just start it right then. My wife has invited me into her secret circle (Hi ladies!) to help get me motivated and back on track. I’m hoping it will restart my interest in sticking to the plan and being healthy.

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Aww, lookit that little fella. Age 10. Height 5’2″, weight 120lbs

Today, I’d like to talk about hockey. I’ve been going HARD to get back into hockey lately. I’ve updated most of my equipment and spent a lot more ice time getting better. I’m working on dry land to better my stickhandling and I’m trying to get at least one game in a week. In pushing myself so much, I’ve found that my body can’t keep up with my enthusiasm. My first shift out the last time was like 9 minutes (about 7 minutes too much) and the only reason I’d gotten off was because I pulled my hip. I’ve been finding myself pulling my left hip pretty consistently which ruins my game. The way I shoot tends to load that left hip up too much and then for the next few days I’m in pain. It hurts most when crossing my left leg over my right, left ankle to right knee. I looked to my wife for advice and she’s recommended that I do more yoga. I’ve finally found that thing that makes me want to get in better shape though. At this point I’m doing yoga to up my hockey game. Once the weather clears up a little more, I’m going to start doing more running and biking to get my stamina up and I’m going to be doing as much yoga as I can stomach so that I can get that hip flexibility back.

Quite the growth spurt. Age - 12. Height 5'9". Weight 165lbs

Quite the growth spurt. Age – 12. Height 5’9″. Weight 165lbs

My goal is to eventually be able to play back at Low-A/High-B-level hockey (I’m currently in C, but I am excelling at it, despite my mobility issues.) There’s 4 levels of hockey: A being college-level, B high-school level, C Recreational, D Instructional. When I played, I was a big dumb bruiser of a player. In senior leagues, you can’t hit anymore. My game was entirely based around beating the tar out of people at every chance. Now I’m forced to be a better player and not just a goon. Also, with the way pickup games go, I don’t always just play defence. I tend to try to play farther back, but occasionally I have to play forward or centre. It’s a different kind of game for me and it’s in my best interest to become a better player by working out off the ice.

Beyond that, I’m also trying to organize a local street hockey league in my neighborhood. I’m hoping this takes off as well, but I need to invest in some nets… Here’s to hoping that the hockey bug sticks. If I can get 2-3 games in a month I’ll be happy and hopefully in the best shape I’ve ever been in.

Age 15. 6'2", 230lbs

Age 15. 6’2″, 230lbs

Living the life and restarting the adventure.

As previously stated, my Paleo Adventure is over. The question now is: what to I do going forward? I think claiming the adventure is over was premature. I find myself struggling to maintain that same level of self control I had when I first started. I think this is normal. I think everyone has these issues but some deal with them differently. In many cases, people lose that control early on and abandon the plan entirely… you know, like a New Year’s Resolution. While I’m happy with my weight number, I still want to look slimmer than I do right now. The good news is that even the small amount of cycling I’m doing has had a reasonably dramatic effect on my legs and butt.

Self control continues to be a challenge. I think my biggest problem lately is that when I’m out of control I eat cereal (Honey Nut Cheerios, normally). There have been days lately that my family is doing something fun that involves non-paleo food. We went to the annual Highland Festival and indulged on food we don’t normally get to eat (scotch eggs, bridies, haggis, rumble-de-thumps [which are just mashed potatoes…]). For our anniversary, we went out to a lovely restaurant and didn’t worry about what we were ordering. I think this is ok. I don’t think I should turn to cereal for a snack though, but I see special occasions as just that: “special”. Sure, there’s times when we can celebrate a special occasion with meals on plan, but that mostly means cooking ourselves… and for celebrations of things, who the fuck wants to cook? Happy Birthday! Make your own fucking cake because you can’t just eat anything you want. Happy Anniversary! Now make me dinner. Who wants that? Sure, you could go out and try to stick to the plan (and I will always encourage you to try to…) but sometimes you want to eat whatever the fuck you want and not feel guilty about it.

I bought this kilt. It's too big and now I need to exchange it.

I bought this kilt. It’s too big and now I need to exchange it.

I think my first year was about finding ways to guilt myself away from my old habits of poor eating and I think that works for a while. The problem is serial guilting. Eventually you’re going to want to spite yourself. It might be a one time blow up, it might be a permanent retraction from the plan, it might be little ‘cheats’ here and there. The question I end up asking myself is “is this one thing going to break me?” While the answer is probably “no”, when done consistently it’s a BIG “yes” even if you don’t want to admit it. I think the answer is to challenge myself with new goals and rules. Changing the game sometimes makes for a better game (unless it’s hockey and you’re trying to ban fighting again… in that case: go fuck yourself). So the question is: how do you challenge yourself and how do you make rule changes you can live by?

I think for myself the rules are going to be a relaxed version of what I was doing at the start. I’m not going to go with an 80/20 or 90/10 ratio. I find the ratios are useless. How many ‘cheats’ are that lower percentage of what you’re eating? What number are you comparing it against? The amount of food you eat? The meal? The snack? It’s kind of a hard number to say and really quantify. I liked one person’s cheat idea: once a month, eat whatever you want in a 1 hour period. If you’ve been on a paleo diet for a bit, 2 pieces of pizza fill you up FAST. You won’t get to the hour mark unless you want to throw up. You’ll quickly remember what it’s like to feel ‘full’ again. And not that pleasant ‘paleo full’ but that ‘overstuffed explosive Creosote-Gut full’. Just remember, that in MOST cases you’ll probably feel kinda shitty afterwards. Most of the time I break plan, I eat badly and immediately think “Why did I think this post-eating feeling was OK?” Things you may have forgotten: heartburn, indigestion, really fucking TERRIBLE gas, bloating… saying things like “ugh, I think I ate too much” and whining about it for an hour while you nerve gas a 1 mile radius around you. Sometimes is serves as a reminder. Reminders are good too.

So, where does that leave me? It leaves me with some fucking work to do. I need to come to terms with good rules for living healthy and sticking to them as closely as possible without killing myself with guilt. It’s about controlling my urges and honoring hunger the way that works best for me. Above all, it’s about living. Sometimes you just gotta make mistakes and then stop making them. Live your life, but try to set some boundaries for health. Also, don’t do a kilt fitting while wearing jeans underneath.

1 Year of Primal: A Retrospective

Summer 2010

Summer 2010

Throughout this retrospective, I’ll be linking to pertinent milestones in my path. First, if you haven’t read it lately, get to know me as I started this.

Read More – About Me

I weighed 325lbs at my worst. Wore a 46-48″ pant and 3XL shirts. I had high blood pressure and no energy. I’d tried lots of diets with little to no success or will to stick to it. Sustainability of a diet was nil.

I started this journey the day after Memorial Day of 2012 (May 29, 2012). The weekend of Memorial Day was my friend’s bachelor party. Prior to leaving for it I weighed in at 300lbs even (May 25, 2012). After a solid weekend of drinking and not a lot of eating, I came home and weighed in at 297lbs on May 29th. We were off to the races with the Primal Blueprint. We chose the Primal Blueprint because we’d heard it was the best way to get into a primal lifestyle.

Read More – Life Changes and Moves Forward

3 days of Primal, 8 lbs down!

3 days of Primal, 8 lbs down!

I had a lot of hope with this diet, but I was concerned about sustainability. I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to afford it or that the food would be crap or that my wife would give up on all the hard work in the kitchen or that sticking to it at work would be difficult. In the above post I outlined my goals.

  1. I want to be able to get out of the shower, look in the mirror and not go “Yecchhh…”
  2. I want to be able to run for a whole mile.
  3. I want to be able to ride a bike without flattening the tires.
  4. I want to be able to buy clothes at the mall and not from the Fatso catalogs.
  5. I want to be able to keep up with my kid as he gets bigger and faster

Here’s my updates as of today

  1. This is getting better. I’ve still got a lot of loose skin, but my gut is smaller, my tits are smaller, I’m not quite so wide and I can see my penis again. So that’s nice.
  2. On May 25th, 2013 I competed in a ‘miler’ run and finished 2nd overall!
  3. I can do this now. I weigh less now than I did when I bought the bike in 1996.
  4. I am now buying clothes at regular stores without digging through the rack for that lone pair of 40-somethings
  5. I can keep up with my 4 year old now, but he’s still got a ways to go and this will be ever evolving.

I decided very early on that I would blog about this adventure and if I was going to do it right, I needed to be honest with myself and my readers. I didn’t expect a lot of readers, but I figured I’d start with the ‘Semi Naked Truth’ Articles where I would put myself out there on display. Read More – The fat, (semi) naked truth [the post]. I knew there would be a lot of challenges on this adventure, mostly food related. It took the constant repeating of “don’t eat that, don’t eat that” to get past it, but it was working. I wrote a lot in June because everything was so new and interesting. My brain was still part fatso so I had that ability to remember how awful I ate and apply it to what I was eating now. The weight was coming off pretty steadily, to my surprise. I wasn’t really exercising all that much and I’ll admit that even now exercising is still a problem. Read More – Exercise ArticlesAfter just 3 weeks, I was already feeling significantly better. I also started asserting my dietary requirements at work. It didn’t always work, but I found one person at the company who helped me by making sure we’d have salads without grains or dairy when possible and would order appropriate food for me when I was working on special project teams on the weekend. Then it happened… in less than a month I lost 20lbs. Despite all the initial challenges I was making it work!

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A good cheat day.

I’m very lucky to have a wife that works harder at this than I do… because I can’t cook worth a damn. She is the reason this is working for me. It was working fast, too. My clothes were already fitting looser and my ‘summer of weddings’ was upon me. My first wedding was a ‘fat guy in a GIANT coat’ debacle. But it was working, by mid July of last year, with only 6 weeks or so into it, I was 55lbs down from my worst weight and 30lbs down since starting. My goal weight at the time was a lofty 205, my doctor stepped in and said I should be at 247. Little did he know that I would blow by that in short order, and then… a Whole30 for August. No weight charting, uber strict paleo… no cheating… except that we did cheat and it was TOTALLY WORTH IT… and then we tried it again and it really worked. I noticed that my appearance was getting tighter… particularly with my manboobs. Another thing that was happening quickly was that my high blood pressure was disappearing.

The Whole30 ended in a great success. I was nearing 50lbs lost since starting my adventure and almost 75lbs since my worst. I really started to feel it. That 50lb mark came shortly after. I was feeling fantastic, but I was still up over 40″ around my waist. I had bought some “Challenge pants” to push me. To help push me, my wife and I embarked on a Whole52 starting in October and ending at Thanksgiving. We figured we needed to prep our bodies for the onslaught of holiday feeding. 240lbs came shortly after… I was back to my high school weight… and I still had some clothes from High School to demonstrate. We did end up surviving ThanksgivingBy December, I had started posting less on here and moved primarily to facebook for my more ‘microupdates’. I left the blog for big posts like my FIRST 5K! It felt great to be able to complete this, even though I didn’t run it to it’s entirety.

The Happiest Family on Earth

The Happiest Family on Earth

Then the major goal happened. 100lbs down since my worst. I had blown past my 40″ goal pants right into a set of 36s. My wife and I reached our goal weights and part of a contract I had with her was that when she reached her goal weight, we would go to Disney World. We went, and we tried to stay paleo… for a few hours. Eventually we gave in and went full fat-American-Tourist mode to see what would happen to us. Luckily, we only packed on about 8 or 9 lbs in our extended stay (thanks to the Blizzard at home). However, when we got back and went back to a full strict paleo, I lost the weight in a few days and suffered from a fainting spell which claimed my glasses and gashed my skull. To this day we have no real answer as to why this happened. Low blood sugar is still the explanation despite me never HAVING it the entire time.

In April, I declared our Paleo Adventure over. It had become our lifestyle now and was less an adventure. However, now I’m thinking that I need to reinvigorate myself and get back on the wagon. I feel that I’ve been slipping badly and my scale is showing it. This morning I weighed in at 229lbs. That’s up 13lbs since my best weight on this. That’s a LOT. I’ve been cheating more and more. It’s time to get back on the wagon and do it right again. It’s time to go into Year 2. The Primal Empire Strikes Back!

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The Paleo Adventure is over

*dramatic pause*

I’ll get it right out of the way, I’m not giving up on being paleo… but the adventure of eating paleo is over. It has slowly transitioned into just a regular way of life and has been this way for the past few months more or less. At this point it’s more about occasionaly discipline and reminders to “not eat that” or occasionally repeating in my head “no dairy today, no dairy today” and less occasionally “no chocolate today”. The adventurous part of eating paleo is over. Now it’s just life. This is mainly why I haven’t been posting lately. It’s gotten ‘boring’ so to speak. But the ideal diet is the one that isn’t, right?

I still get comments in person about how amazing this worked in such a short amount of time. My father has decided to start transitioning to paleo as well. He got something called the PaleoBurn. I’m not familiar with it but more power to him. I’m curious how he’ll deal with the loss of beer. I think he’s been cutting back on that pretty significantly and has moved more toward red wine. It’s a pretty big change for a 62 year old to make and he attributes it to my success. To me, that’s amazing that I could do something to influence my father so much. Of course, I think it’s a combination of my wife’s amazing weight loss and my own. My mother in law even ‘shows us off’ to her friends. I think she’s trying to transition to a paleo diet as well.

My wife is still full bore with the weight loss. She’s doing another challenge right now. I’ve recently started working a new shift which gets me home much earlier and also gets my day started around 5am now. Once I settle into my new shift, I’m going to use that first half hour of my day to work out at work (we have a gym).

Today’s Weigh In – 217lbs

Also, how about a comparison family photo! One of these is from 2011 and one is from 2013… I’ll let you guess which is which.

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A SAD experiment in the Happiest Place on Earth

Cad and I riding on the last car of Big Thunder Mountain for the 6th time.

Cad and I riding on the last car of Big Thunder Mountain for the 6th time.

This whole journey into weight loss started on February 25th of last year. It all started with my wife discovering a lump in her abdomen that was causing pain. The doctors did a CT scan but they couldn’t get good resolution on it and ordered her to lose 40lbs so they could see it better. Disheartened by this and left feeling hopeless, I told her that if she could lose 40lbs we would go to Disney World. She documents this story in more detail on her blog. Suffice to say she lost weight, I lost weight. I held my end of the bargain and we scheduled our trip to Disney World… along with the Disney Dining Plan. I think at first we reasoned that we’ll stay paleo.

The trip was interesting. We woke up early, surprised our son with the trip and learned that even sheer unbridled excitement is tough to roll at 3am. We packed up the car and headed for the airport. About 5 minutes from the airport my wife asked where a particular piece of luggage was. Another problem with the 3am wake up is that sometimes you forget the hardcase tiger Trunki with all your kids toys in it because it was on top of an armoire. So you do what anyone with just about an hour to go before your flight departs, you head back to go get it. We got the luggage and hightailed it back to the airport with 30 minutes to spare. We get to the counter and are told that my wife’s name is going to be a problem. My wife’s legal name is Elizabeth but we all call her Erin. Unknown to me, her LICENSE actually says E Erin on it, not Elizabeth. Her ticket is for Elizabeth. These things do not match… a call must be made to change the name on the ticket. These are things that don’t get done quickly when your plane is ready to board in 20 minutes. 15 minutes later, we have our new boarding passes and have to go through security. Luckily, we bought the EvenMore passes from JetBlue which gets us through a priority security line… but of course the TSA wants to scan one of my bags like 9 times. 1 minute to go and we’re DASHING for our gate which is, of course, at the COMPLETE END OF THE FUCKING TERMINAL. Luckily, someone saw my wife and kid struggling and called ahead to the gate. I was already AT the gate because I’m going to fucking Florida, slowpokes… We get on the plane as the gate closes. It was close. Now I have to poop. I’ve had to poop for about an hour now. The fasten seatbelt sign is on but we’re not moving… for a while. Eventually my wife (who also has to go to the bathroom) asks the attendant if we can use the bathroom. We are allowed to. Much pooping was had. We finally get going after de-icing and whatnot and are on our way to SUNNY FLORIDA. Which is great because it sucks in Boston right now as it starts to snow.

The entire cast of Honey Boo Boo are behind in in this photo. No joke.

The entire cast of Honey Boo Boo are behind in in this photo. No joke.

So we arrive in our destination and head off to our resort to check-in. Part of our agreement was a stay at the Wilderness Lodge, which is my recommendation if you’re willing to blow a ton of money on your hotel room. I don’t know if it was the hectic dash to the plane or some kind of mental celebration of weight loss but straight out of the door we go off-plan. I don’t remember exactly what item it was, but my wife and I both sorta looked at each other and gave a simultaneous ‘fuck it’. This was the start of our Standard American Diet (SAD) diet in Disney. We head off to EPCOT where we have reservations at the Biergarten. Beer is drank, pretzels are eaten, other things that aren’t paleo are ingested. Then we start to remember what being fat FEELS like. Bloat, gas, general gnarliness. You’d think we learn from that experience but we don’t. Some of the highlights of our off-plan week involve fries, white potatoes, SANDWICHES, ice cream, etc. We eventually slow our roll after a particularly nasty (delicious) meal at the 50s Prime Time Cafe. We’re enjoying the food we’re eating and we’re complaining about the way we’re feeling but it does help us reestablish this as a ‘one time thing’ that we don’t want to experience when we get home. We had a real fancy meal at Artist Point which is located at our hotel. It’s a steakhouse and we order up some grand things. One item I had on my plate was a glazed donut injected with sweet potato. It was also served with veg and a giant steak… so that was paleo.

Now despite eating all that nonsense at meals, we actually DID stick to our plan in regards to snacking. My wife packed some delicious paleo snacks that we all ate. We also brought a Brita pitcher and a 3L Platypus Hoser water tank so we could hydrate (water in Florida tastes awful to us… like sulfur) and a backpack for me to lug around. And despite eating poorly, we had a WONDERFUL time. Heck, we had a wonderful time eating poorly, to be honest. I’m sory, but some of that god awful food is fucking delicious. I’m glad I don’t eat it anymore but, fuck… sometimes that shit is good. I had a Peanut Butter and Jelly Milkshake at one point… and I must mention the sweet potato filled donut again.

My son (who is 3) had a great time. We went on any ride that he was tall enough for (42 inches). He rode EVERYTHING… twice. Three times in some instances. Then came the Blizzard. Appropriately designated “Nemo” by the Weather Channel (named storms that aren’t Hurricanes are not a National Weather Service thing, people. It’s a way for TWC to market the storm as THEIR product and draw attention to themselves.) it was due to hit on Friday night. The night we were supposed to fly home. Our flight was canceled and moved to Saturday. I booked another night and we stayed a full day in the park on Friday. Unfortunately Nemo was going to hang around. Our Saturday flight was canceled and we hurried to find lodging for another night at a cheaper hotel on property while we waited to hear our new flight time. That time: Tuesday. Our vacation had been extended by a solid 4 days. Thank god for travel insurance (if they pay…). I went to the front desk and found that we could get 2 more days in the park for the entire family for only $60. Our Disney Dining Plan was out so we’d have to pay for our food. Luckily our insurance SHOULD cover those costs as I kept a pocket full of receipts. We ate a bit nicer, but not on-plan specifically. We dreaded the weigh-in when we got back.

Even in our much smaller form, fitting all 3 of us in the Astro Orbiters is simply a spinning family torture device.

Even in our much smaller form, fitting all 3 of us in the Astro Orbiters is simply a spinning family torture device.

Eventually we returned home and weighed in. I can’t speak for my wife but I left weighing 220lbs. I returned weighing 228lbs. 10 days, 8lbs. You’d think the sheer amount of walking would flush out even bad food choices but NO. Your diet is key to your weight. I probably walked 10 miles a day and still got 8lbs on me. It took me 3 days to lose it by going back on-plan. That was 228lbs on Tuesday night to 220lbs on Friday morning… that same Friday morning in which I passed out and smashed my face. I’m wondering if my change in diet from good to bad and RIGHT back to good had something to do with my blood sugar fluctuation. It’s a possibility.

Disney World is off the table for a few years. We agreed (I think) that we’d wait until my kid is the height to go on EVERYTHING and that all the new rides are in AND been tested for a year. Will we get the Disney Dining Plan? Possibly. I think we could challenge the DDP and do it paleo. I get the DDPs for free when I go because I go when it’s dead. So it’s no money out of my pocket and significant savings when eating. We could have done it paleo. Maybe not all the desserts and stuff but most of it. Also, we can learn to say no to dessert. It was a wonderful time and we learned that we’d prefer to keep eating the way we’re eating and not go back to a SAD diet… ever.

Today’s Weigh In – 219lbs

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Disney World Bound – What to bring?

So, both my wife and I have been successful in losing weight and due to our CONTRACT we’re going to Disney World for 5 days. Luckily for me, this has no real drawback aside from spending a bit of money to go to a place I enjoy going to anyway. So we’re off to the Magic Kingdom for 5 days to stay at the Wilderness Lodge with a Disney Dining Plan. Our room comes equipped with a mini-fridge so we’re trying to get a list of good paleo snacks and treats to bring with us (or ship to us), so please have at it with the suggestions.

So far we’ve got this on our list:

So we’re looking for more suggestions so we can try to snack healthy. My wife has already booked all our meals at healthy places that can accommodate us.

We appreciate any insight people have on this. Thanks!

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I ran a 5K?

Wait… what the hell does that title say?

I ran a 5K? A 5K what? RUN!? Who runs? What the hell has happened here? Now, you wait just a god damned minute…

Festivus 5K

I was holding out for a clearer photo, but this will suffice. That’s the wife running just ahead of me.

Ok, enough from 325lb Me-circa-2007… The reality here is that yes, I did in fact ‘run’ a 5K. Though defining it as a run would be a bit overzealous. I RAN about a mile of the 3.1… I jogged or otherwise walked quickly the majority of it, finishing in a stellar 38:36. Not bad for my first outing with absolutely zero training. Seriously, I did it. Here’s the results. Keep scrolling… keep scrolling… KEEEEEEEEP SCROLLING… THERE. Finished 409th and 52nd out of 55 for my group (male 30-39). Apparently 30 year olds run this and they run it well. The top finishers were all in this class apparently. My lovely wife ran this with me, competing in her second 5K (which she actually trains for). She was nice enough to not abandon me during our run and finished a second ahead of me. I even mapped my run.

So, how’d it ACTUALLY go? Well, my day started off with what felt like someone draining a snot bag into my chest… good way to start. I got ready with my wife and headed down to the starting area. It was COLD. Maybe just above freezing. Now, in the past, I’ve not faired well in cold weather exertion (unless it was hockey) so I was a little nervous about dying out there. I was also suffering from some butthurt earlier in the week. So, in my infinite wisdom, I had taken some stool softeners the day before. It didn’t occur to me until later in the night that this could have Uta Pippig like consequences during the run. So my goals were pretty much set in stone for this race: finish it, don’t die and most importantly DON’T SHIT YOUR PANTS WHILE RUNNING AT FULL SPEED. I think this should be everyone’s goal when running, don’t you?

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Here we are crossing the finish line

Well, I accomplished those goals. I did not, in fact, shit my pants. I also completed a tertiary goal: finish the race in under 40 minutes. One goal I also surpassed was running for the longest distance non-stop. I completed the first 3/4 of a mile running up with the middle of the pack. At about the 1 mile marker, all that snot that was in my chest lovingly decided to introduce itself to my airways. The remainder of the race was budgeting running with jogging slowly and trying to hock up said snotballs without affecting anyone around me. In fact, for the first mile, I was ahead of my wife… but then I gassed out and she overtook me while slapping me HARD on my sore butthurt ass (without thinking of course). I expected her to just run the race the way she would, but I think another couple just ahead of us had her hanging back with me. This couple was being really supportive and the husband was pushing his wife to keep going and push through it, and I think she wanted to be supportive as well. around the 1.5mile marker I identified a person who I could try to keep pace with: a younger woman with a ‘running club’ shirt on that looked to be in good shape. If I could keep pace with her, I’d be happy. I kept pace with her, my wife kept pace with me and we finished 1 second ahead of each other.

When I crossed the finish line I wasn’t wasted. My legs didn’t hurt (yet), my feet didn’t hurt and I actually felt pretty good. My dad came out to see us start and finish, so it was nice to achieve that accomplishment with him there. I know my mom would have been proud to see me do that too.

I’d like to do another, but I’m going to wait until after it warms up a little. I really don’t want to kill myself slipping on ice and take myself out.

Now, I ran this almost 2 weeks ago, but was holding out for professional photos. Unfortunately, only one ever came up and it was blurry and the composition was shit and it wasn’t… so instead I’m using these taken by my family and friends. I even ruined the ‘post-race group photo’ by blinking STRONGLY. I was half tempted to photoshop googly eyes on myself, but I’m too tired.

Running time weight – 230lbs

Weigh in 12/20/12 – 228lbs (3lbs to go to my major goal weight)

BLINK!

BLINK!

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