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Monday, May 23, 2016

Sometimes you just gotta do the best you can...

Let's face it, no matter how organized, motivated, and disciplined anyone can be; sometimes life just gets in the way...

So, we have to do the best we can, and continue getting back up each time life knocks us down or sends us on a detour.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

What a difference a day can make...

I use a very simple & free iPhone app to measure my heart rate, and while it's certainly not a highly calibrated EKG that's been validated by the FDA, it's quite good at showing me when my heart is in A-Fib.

Being in A-Fib is nothing more than the top two sections of my heart being out of sync, they 'flutter'. The bottom two still pump blood & keep me alive, but when the top two flutter, the heart isn't very efficient, I feel tired, and blood can pool in there, potentially causing blood clots that can travel to the brain.

Not good.

So, I take a blood thinner to mitigate the risk of clots (yay! Pills everyday!), and I monitor my heart rate so I can tell if I pop back into A-Fib.

Like I was on Monday. Got zapped (re-booted) Tuesday, and back to normal Wednesday.

...with a stern lecture from my Cardiologist about my caffeine intake, poor sleep habits, and the need to continue loosing weight.

So, I have a caffeine withdrawal headache today (drinking lots of water), and with my heart in good rhythm AND spring weather - I'm planning to get out on the bike trails again.

...and, of course, everyday I recommit & choose to eat for health instead of desire. Some days I'm more successful than others, but I keep making the choice!

Friday, April 15, 2016

Win some / Lose some

Lots of good choices still vastly outweigh the bad choices, but the bad choices keep sneaking in. Gotta fix that, gotta get walking again, gotta get back out on the bike...

Monday, March 07, 2016

This is sacrifice?

I've said it before, and I'll say it again...the trick for me is to eat 'on plan' food choices that are so yummy, that I'd choose this food REGARDLESS of it being healthy. Make enough healthy choices to simply crowd out the unhealthy, and before you know it, your whole life seems to be in a much better place.

Tuesday, March 01, 2016

Reset

My last update was nearly two months ago, and I've been quiet due to frustration & backsliding.

I get too wrapped up in numbers. Pounds lost, inches lost, macronutrients consumed, pace per mile...

...and I've come SO FAR! My journey has covered SO much territory that I lost track of my destination. I get SO wrapped up in where I've been, I'm not looking where I'm going. It's hard to navigate to your destination while looking in the rearview mirror.

Enough.

I lost nearly 130lbs, and when I hit the plateau I was SO wrapped up in what got me there that I couldn't figure out where to go.

I'd climbed down off the mountain, and while looking for the shore, I got lost in the flatlands.

Time to reset. I'm hitting the trip odometer & resetting my focus.

After all, who cares how far I came, if I go no further?

It's time to start fresh, from THIS point. The lessons I learned a year ago were GREAT, but they can't help me get past this point.

A roadmap of the mountains won't help when you hit the coast & have to start swimming.

Time to reset the trip odometer.

Time to start fresh.

Time to start a new journey...

Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Aches, pains, and gains...

September was my last month of measurable weight loss. Of course, I rode my bike 200 miles that month!!! I was eating 100% on-plan, so it's not shocking that everything "worked".

...but then October happened. Nothing "bad", per se, but I had the fresh mental outlook of having rode 200 miles, and inadvertently did ZERO miles in October! I didn't realize it at the time, but I was also beginning to experience "carb creep". In fact, I think that may go all the way back to March, when the Disney trip happened. That was when I started to add "just a bit" of white potato here & there. Small order of hash-browns at breakfast, or a few stolen fries at lunch. In the beginning, it was no big deal, but by October it'd become a daily expectation, rather than a weekly exception.

I love potatoes. White potatoes, sweet potatoes, even red-skin & fingerling potatoes. Damn those starchy carbs! ...and let's not even talk about the refined vegetable oils they are cooked in...

Anyway, I plateaued in October, and then the Holidays happened. I really didn't think I was "that" bad during the holidays, but the bottom line doesn't lie.

I bounced from 316 up to 330. 14 damn pounds of back tracking! This puts me back where I was in June!!! Dammit!!!

Even at my old loss-rate of 2lbs per week, it'd take me through the first week of March to get back to where I was in October.

October to March is half a year lost, and THAT is a real bite in the ass.

After a day or two of feeling sorry for myself, I decided to not lie down and die just yet...

So, I came up with a plan. I found some new apps, and I've learned some stuff I'd like to try. I want to continue losing weight & looking better, feeling great, exercising more, sleeping fantastic, and keep buying smaller, nicer clothes.

So - here is my new plan. I'm largely going back to basics, with a low-carb, nearly ketogenic outlook.

I'm staying with the whole "super clean paleo" way of eating, with a few tweaks. First, I'm going to stay totally clean with my good meat choices. I'll still eat a ton of veggies, just keeping them to the non-starchy types. LOTS of "good" fats. No grains. No dairy. No artificial sweeteners. No added sugars. No added preservatives. 10,000 steps per day. 3 hours of other exercise each week. 8 hours of quality sleep each night. Track EVERYTHING. 2,000 calories per day, with offsets for exercise. 10, 20, 70 split on Carbs, Protien, and Fat. Daily ketone measurement, with tweaks as needed.

...and, of course, I'll report progress here!

(For anyone interested in low carb ketosis, Google Jimmy Moore - he is quite inspirational)

Monday, January 04, 2016

Stupid? Maybe...

Between November 2nd & January 4th, exactly nine weeks, I gained 16 damn pounds.

I'm not sure how it happened, other than a couple of epic-off-plan days. Thanksgiving. My Birthday, twice. But the real reason is more insidious, and much tougher to eradicate - but I cannot allow this shit to continue!

(More on this subject in a subsequent posting)

So, to kick off my recommitment to the New Year, I decided that a frigid January bike ride in the snow would be a nearly-epic expedition!

I started out just before dawn, with temps in the low 20's, with a light breeze bringing the windchill to the low teens.

I wore a good selection of winter gear - the trick being to dress warmly enough so as not to freeze to death, but not so warm that you sweat & then freeze to death.

My only issue was cold feet! I wore good wool socks inside my insulated Merrill Polarand Moc's, but I think my issue was caused by a thin pair of socks I wore over the wool one - the thin socks were talk, so I could tuck my sweat pants in - and I think that the sweat pant & socks were bunched up, making circulation tough. Maybe? I'm not sure, but damn, my feet started getting cold around mile 7, and by mile 10 felt very uncomfortable.

The fat tires on my bike really glided amazingly well on this hard-pack snow! I didn't know what to expect, but I was thrilled. Ice? No Bueno. I bounce better in the summer.

Question of the day: Puddle, or Pond? (Cracking ice under your feet all sounds the same)

At several points, I realized if I slid off the path, nobody would find me until Spring! I took a detour down an Equestrian path that was astoundingly scenic, but when I came down a hill to a large frozen area, I didn't know how deep things could be, and I didn't want my suburban bike ride to take a Jack London type detour! I worked my way past the ice, but not without falling. My helmet may have paid for itself that day.

Also treacherous were the street crossings, due to the large frozen berms of ice & snow. These were brutal, and at the intersection of Shoe Factory & Higgins, I went down. It was a slow, stupid fall, but it highlighted to me how quickly a fun ride could turn south.

All in all, it was a great ride. I've experimented with two bikes, two sets of lights, three sets of gear, and four different routes. All of that paid off! I was shocked at how quickly my conditioning had atrophied, but I prevailed! Now, a day later, I'm terribly sore, and a bit bruised, but happy that I did it.