Wednesday, April 29, 2015

The Day after the Food Orgy

Yesterday, I increased the amount of food I ate. I also went over-board and ate less than healthy choices. As Ivy commented, it was high in salt.
Why on earth would I do such a thing? I have been so good for 3 months and suddenly, I went rogue.
My health plan is to listen to myself; I don't eat once I feel full, I choose (except yesterday) food that will help me get healthier and disregard the ones that are not helping. I exercise but if I encounter a problem I slow down my training. I'm really in tuned with my body.
I expect results and I meet them every time. I keep track of those results daily. My problem is I couldn't explain the latest results on the scale and that worries me.
Even yesterday, I had added 2 toasts with natural PB to my breakfast (minus the cereals), I had nachos for lunch and to add in-salt to the day, burger and fries for supper... and I lost .4 pound!
Well when I say yesterday was a food orgy I might be exaggerating. If I compare yesterday with any day I used to have before embarking on this health journey there is quite a difference: The PB is natural, no high salt or sugar content. I had less nachos than I would have had and the nachos were not laced with sour cream, instead I just had a spoon full of plain Greak Yoghurt. I ate the burger but not all the fries like I used to and I would have had chips and chocolate in the evening, and wine. Yesterday I didn't eat any snacks and drank only water.
I also walked about 24 K steps as opposed to my past life where, if I measure the distance between the fridge and the sofa, I walked maybe 500 steps.
So I can explain why I lost .4 pound yesterday. I'm going to increase my calorie intake to keep the loss at a normal rate but I will only increase it with healthy choices (More fruits and vegetables). I'll keep a really close tab of where my weight is going.
I feel bad; so many of you have the opposite problem, and here I am complaining about losing weight too fast, but the whole exercise is to learn about how to be healthy and gaining weight or losing weight too fast is just not healthy!
Any suggestions about healthy snacks?

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Crossing new milestones

There has been a lot of crossing new milestones in the last 2 days... When I started on this journey, I had divided my weight loss plan in 4 losing steps. The first was to lose 20 pounds, then 15 pounds for each of the next 3 steps. My weight is now down to 178.4 lbs which is one milestone, and I'm done with step 2 of my plan, another milestone, and I'm in the 170s lbs, one more milestone . It's going a lot faster than I expected.
When is the rapid weight loss supposed to slow down? I have no idea, everything I expected didn't happen, it's not slowing down, it's even speeding up. For the next few days I am facing a difficult problem, I want to maintain this weight. I just need to make sure it's a normal weight loss that is not hiding something else.
So this morning, I ate my regular breakfast of yoghurt and raspberries but without cereal and instead had 2 healthier peanut butter toasts. That's a lot of food, I feel like I'll bust at the seams! For lunch (keep that between us, my wife is not aware of this) I will have nachos, there is no sour cream, I might take a walk to the store to get some but in any case I'll put plenty of cheese. (wife here: we have Greek yoghurt to replace the sour cream or so was the plan…) For supper, hamburger and fries, I'll eat at least a small size fries. Let see what happens to my weigh tomorrow. I will not have sugar, or alcohol there are still restrictions that I will not cross.
Tomorrow if my weight has increased or at least stayed the same, I'll be happy and resume what I was doing. if I have lost weight, there might be a health problem, I'll make an appointment to see my doctor.
While we are on the health issue, my back is giving me a lot of problems lately, so for a time I have stopped running and will only keep walking for my exercise. I'll see how it feels after a week. I hate stopping my training schedule, but first and foremost, I want to maintain a healthy attitude and running might be doing more harm at this point. We’ll see!
I’m keeping my goal of a 150K steps for this week, I really want to get a new badge for winning a step challenge with my vivofit. As of this morning, I'm first! We can write comments in the vivofit website challenge and I have stated how many steps I was planning to walk, I just want the soon-to-be-losers to know what they have to face up to. :) It's all in the spirit of raising the bar!
I'm starting to see more and more people coming back to Val-des-Bois after the long winter. These people have only known me as an obese man so I get a lot of: “Wow you look so much younger!” or “Have you lost weight?” The weight loss is so evident that even I am starting to think I look great LOL. It's really great to get the acknowledgments, but I can't let that go to my head. I must say though that it did a bit and with my head in the clouds from those few compliments, boy were my steps light.
Yesterday I had a choice between doing our income tax or writing my post; our government is not too understanding so I chose to file our returns. I hate, no let me just re-type this in upper case, I HATE filling up those forms and I'm using a computer program. Every year it's the same thing, the government already has all my information, why can't they just send me a statement saying: “Dear Richard, after reviewing your income for this year and comparing it with our expenses, we decided to get more money from you and your wife. Please send us the money right now, we need to get a new welcome mat at the house of not-common as soon as possible. If we ever owed you money, you could wait for it, we can’t!” Any one love filling up their income tax?

Sunday, April 26, 2015

One More Milestone

Today is my weighing day, I officially weigh myself every 2 weeks. My goal is to lose 2.5 lbs during that time.
Before I reveal my new weight, I’d like to recap that in the past 2 weeks, we were on the road for two full days and we ate in restaurants. I also didn't exercise at all, just stepped on the gas pedal. I didn't exercise the day after we arrived either, I was recuperating from the long journey.
Last week we ordered PIZZA and we also ate at one more restaurant. So, if I tally the last 2 weeks, a lot of meals in restaurants and 3 days without exercising...
I lost 6 pounds! You read it correctly, and it’s not a misprint, S-I-X pounds. My weight this morning is 180.8 lbs. This is twice as much as I wanted to lose, I should have been excited right? But I was not!  
Mind is a powerful tool that sometimes work for you but at other times works against you. Yesterday I realized that as I was getting closer and closer to reaching the 170s lbs range and I was feeling uneasy about crossing from the 180s lbs. Dropping down from the 190s lbs to the 180s lbs however, was an accomplishment. The thing is that when I was in my 30s my weight was in the 170s lbs range and I couldn't find my way back to the 160s lbs. It's when, I accepted that I was overweight and adapted my pants size to a larger size, a couple of times. It's when I gave up my health for the comfort of food and wine. It's when I was hopeless and kept gaining a lot of weight and looking at XL size clothes rack and then XXL.
It's not rational, I know, so I will not focus much on those negative feelings, I'll keep doing what I'm doing and get pass the 170s lbs range as fast as I can manage. I'm not excited about it as I was to cross to the 180s lbs barrier but I'm really calm about it. I'm not that 30ish man I was, I am one determined 55 years old who is on his way to lose it all.
On a side note, I also crossed a big milestone; more than half of my weight goal is gone! It took 3 months to accomplish that (my goal is to lose 65 pounds in a year)... so I have 9 months left to lose the other half. Which is what I expected; losing the first half of the 65 lbs was fast but at some point in the next few months, my weight loss should be slowing down.
Anyone getting close to a milestone?

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Sweet Ball of Fire

A while back I wrote about “cheat” days. I mentioned that I don't have any. At the time, I was thinking about those days when you wake up and you get pancakes, generously pour syrup on them and to add a little salt to this breakfast, you cook a pound of bacon. The dog is looking at you lovingly because it thinks it will get some, it doesn't!
After such a breakfast, since you have already cheated so much anyway, you may as well have ice cream. The whole day is centered around eating badly. It's not a planned day, it just happens. You get out of control. Those were the “cheat” days I was thinking about when I wrote that post.
However a blogging friend wrote this: “I hate the term 'cheat day' because it automatically denotes doing something we shouldn’t do.” Please keep in mind I'm referring only to uncontrolled day we might have and not the “unrestricted day” some of you might allow yourself, but I'll come back to that later on.
I agreed with my friend and commented that I didn't like the word “cheat” either... However there are other words I don't like too: fat, obese, overweight, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart attack, diabetes, etc.
So from now on I'll use the word “cheat” because it does denote doing something we shouldn’t do. If we allow ourselves to cheat we are getting away from our goal. DO WE ONLY WISH TO BE HEALTHY OR DO WE NEED IT? Be good to yourself, don't cheat, that's the message here.
It kills me to read that people I care about and who have so many opportunities where they could step up to the healthy plate but end up stepping up to junk food straight to their mouth. We are all different and I get that, what I don't get is if we don't get good results and we keep doing what we were doing, do we really expect a different outcome? You know that’s the definition of: c-r-a-z-y!
I started a No PS challenge which is a challenge about not eating the poison that is sugar, for a month. This is NOT a challenge between you and I, it's a challenge for each one of us, it's to cleanse ourselves of the sugar in our life. I am convinced this was my biggest weight problem. If we don't cleanse our body how do we think we can control the cravings?
My commitment is now a lot more involved than a month, I WILL NOT HAVE REFINED SUGAR like cakes (doesn't matter who's birthday it is), cookies, pies, soft drinks, chocolate or any other sweet I can control UNTIL I HAVE REACHED MY GOAL. Even then, it's not going to be a daily occurrence, it is going to be for special occasions. The portion size will not interfere with my health. I'm using every occasions to learn more about eating healthy and I think that when I resume sugar consumption it's going to be a very slow process... there is no sugar rush.
While at this point I may have lost all of you and no one is reading anymore, I might as well continue venting and get one more thing off my chest: “unrestricted day” I don't recommend it without some structure.
First, it shouldn't be about “unrestricted”, it should be about learning to eat as if you were at the weight you want to be and maintain. For me, if I were taking an “unrestricted day” I would eat like a 150 lbs man. Not like a 215 lbs man or whatever is my weight at the time. The reason is simple, I don't want to send any messages to my brain that I'm doing this temporarily and that as soon I have lost enough weight I'll resume to what I was doing before.
Second, I will not have desserts other than fruits. I want to stay away from what was my problem to start with. I could foul myself and say I'm in control and that a little piece of cake is OK but my brain is waiting for a signal that I'm losing control. It's all about mental attitude!
Third, I'll eat balanced meals, now and when I reach my goal! I won't regularly have junk food. I don't want to eat junks on my “unrestricted day” this would just send one more message to my brain: “Junk is good and as soon I'm off the thing...!”
I am not pointing fingers at anyone. All I want to do is be a real friend and maybe touch you in a way you might need.
I hope you folks have a great weekend but what I really hope for the most is that you keep heath in your mind and you step way up.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Pizza Date

Failure will never overtake me if my determination to succeed is strong enough.”
- Og Mandino
My Health Journey is not only about losing weight, I'm also traveling in the path of learning and finally working on conditioning myself.
As far as conditioning, I have been really good in that domain. I was a perfect processing machine. I could over eat until full where I had conditioned myself to unbutton my pants so that I could breath. With this new found breath of fresh air, there were more room and I could stuff a few more bites so I would just end the meal with a dessert and to help digest it all, a lot of wine. Such an efficient machine!
I guess I had some tuning to do on the machine. Three weeks ago, I was thinking: “I should eat pizza!” Notice here it wasn't a craving, it was not a dream, it was not even a temptation, it was a conscious thought to learn about conditioning myself to eat right even with the wrong type of food.
I decided then that I would wait to be back in Canada where I knew I could find my favorite pizza. I didn't want to waste this experiment on a pizza that wouldn't be as tasty as I wanted.
Last week when we set foot in Canada, I rush to the nearest pizza place and stuffed my face, I knew I would have pizza but I didn't want to set a date. I was thinking when it's convenient, I'll just get it. It was still on my term, I was still in control (you take that junk food!).
Wednesday, the conditions were just right, I ordered a SMALL pizza for the 2 of us. It was a small pizza so we couldn't get more than the 2 small slices each. It ended up being more food than we had become accustomed to lately and we were full. If I would have still been hungry, the carton box would have been a possible add-on.
The test was about conditioning myself to eat some wrong type of food and having less of it. I didn't open the door to eating more junk food for that day because I already had pizza, the pizza was plenty. Everything was under control.
The following day I was expecting to step on the scale and see a very small gain. NO! I lost weight eating pizza...
So the lesson is that I should eat pizza everyday, right? WRONG! I want to eat healthy, so pizza will only happen once in a while, it's not the few pieces of green peppers and mushrooms that makes it a health problem, it's the pepperoni, over flowing mozzarella and the dough!
Right now I'm conditioning myself for the weekend, what about you, any big plans?


Thursday, April 23, 2015

Pants on the Ground

Pants on the Ground
Pants on the Ground

Lookin' like a fool
With your pants on the Ground
With the gold in your mouth
Hat turned sideways
Pants hit the ground

In Florida, I have only been wearing shorts. So the night before we were heading back up North, I tried my pants; None fitted!

A quick trip to Walmart later, I had a new pair of jeans and a pair of pants.

When we got back home, I checked the clothes I had left behind. I have one pair of old jeans that are a little big but will do for right now but I plan to do some work outside, building and fixing things and I need an old pair of pants. Soon, I might have to wear my brand new jeans to do dirty works, it's terrible! All the trouble that success brings! I'm not complaining, I'm just bragging LOL

While walking this morning I was attacked! There was all kind of white fluffy cold stuff hitting me, it's the last week of April, this should never happen!

It might be the cold that freezes the logical part of my brain, but I decided that next week’s goal will be 150,000 steps. My best week so far has been 127,298 steps. I might have to write my post walking outside.

My training has changed a bit for now. I'm walking a bit more every day (my goal for now is around 20 k). I'm jogging a bit longer during my jogging/walking training for a total of 14 minutes jogging and 14 minutes walking. I also do the jogging/walking training one day out of two, instead of 3 times a week. As soon as pickleball is available, I will add it back to my schedule.

When I reach 180 lbs, I'll start to include weight training as part of my routine. I can't say I'm excited about weight training but I'm really excited about 180 lbs. 

My car had white dust this morning

The lake is still frozen!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015


In April, Florida is hot! I think my poor Canucks body was starting to have a melt down. I shouldn’t complain, I know most of you guys are just starting to see spring, but I’m not a summer type person, as a matter of fact, summer is my least favorite season.
Last Saturday, the car was pointing North where we could escape to cooler weather. – end of the weather rant :)
It usually takes 3 days to drive from our home in Florida to our home in Canada. Last weekend we drove it in 2 days. Sunday we drove 16 hours, that's 1500 KM (930 Miles) straight. That was a long day which started at 4:30 AM.
For the weekend, including Monday as a rest day, my exercising consisted mostly of going for pee-breaks, less than 1000 steps per day.
Tuesday I started to walk again and I even went for a run in late afternoon. Mentally, it was hard. I felt like I could rest for a while and not exercise but I know it's a downfall that I can't afford. In my book, exercise is not something I want to do when I feel like it, it has to be part of my daily routine.
We ate our meals during the trip in restaurants but we did really great. Monday when we drove to our place from our daughter’s house (a 1 hour drive), we also stopped at a restaurant for lunch so that we would not be starving when we got home.  We had a breakfast meal for lunch. I even ate 2 slices of bacon. There were 4 slices in my plate but I believe in “eat less” so 2 slices didn't make the trip to the bottom of my stomach. There was also some home style potatoes, some went down, some didn't.
Next Sunday is my official weight in; however, I weight myself daily and I can tell that my weight is still following it's downfall!
Today hopefully I'll catch up with all the posts you folks wrote. I was keeping you in my mind (and quickly reading your posts).
My new computer has some problems, it keeps adding links to words in blogger. Even when I write a comment, it keeps opening pages about surveys, it is so annoying, any suggestions?

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

A week on Speed

My computer problem is solved! All it needed was for me to buy a brand new HP laptop. The new laptop came with Windows 8.1, a lot of GB and did I mention it's new! Now the pain begins; learning a new operating system can be sooo frustrating. But as you know, no pain no gain grrrr.

I also downloaded OpenOffice instead of using the Microsoft Office Suite... more learning. I can barely get my emails because I don't have outlook installed. Do you think I am done with whining? NO!
Last week, our daughter came to Florida for a visit. Here in a nut shell what we did:  

We went to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium. This is the worst tourist attraction I have ever visited. To get our tickets, we had to wait in line and it was hot! Before we could finally get in, we had to walk through their food court and then through their gift shop. You haven't been inside the place yet that you get all kind of solicitations to spend more money. The “aquarium” (yes I quoted aquarium) was split in 2 different locations so we decided to go to the other building first. In their brochure they advertise that to get to the second location (which is not within walking distance), you can take a free boat ride or their trolley shuttle. We wanted to go by boat but of course they have those running once every hour and when we got there, it was already all booked.
We were told that we could take the trolley and come back by boat. This sounded like a good plan and so we did. When we got to the other location, the first thing we noticed: NO FISHES! It was really a promotional building for the movie: “Dolphin Tale 2”!

After about 10 minutes, and that included time to go to the bathroom, we were ready to go back. To exit that building, you guessed it, we had to walk through their gift shop. The boat was not available so we took the trolley back.
Back to the first location they had some tanks with dolphins, turtles and a few sharks, but that was it. You couldn't even clearly see the animals in those tank!

So if you go to the Tampa area and think about visiting Clearwater's aquarium, don't! There are better things to do and see.

We had booked a 5.5 miles down river kayak trip. We had a great time, the water was clear, the fishes were in school, we even saw one alligator and several turtles. It was peaceful and stress free. We all loved it and we'll be back. I highly recommend it.
Here is a little clip I uploaded on youtube:


We went golfing, well I mean mini-golf, at Congo River. At the entrance, they have live baby alligators. They have special rules with funny things to do. At one point, Christiane had to play her shot with her eyes closed and her hands behind her back! We had fun. Before you leave, you can hold an alligator, for a fee. My daughter was so happy about that! Kids! You know! The important thing is that in the end, she still had all her digits accounted for.
We also went to see a movie: “Women in gold” a true story about a Jewish women who sues the Austrian government to recuperate a painting that was stolen from her family, by the Nazis, during WW2. Great movie!

We went to the beach. I didn't want to brag about it knowing some of you are not in beach weather locations... but I had to be honest!

We went to the Tampa Aquarium (notice no quote for aquarium this time). This was my second time there and I really loved it. It's a great aquarium, you get to see a lot of fishes, in nice tanks. It takes several hours, to see it all. I highly recommend it.

Our daughter flew away, back to Canada leaving us with a lot of good memories.
On Saturday, like a lot of other snowbirds, we migrated back North to get to cooler temperature. Tomorrow post will be shorter I promise :)

Just to end with a health update: Even with having a guest and all the activities we did, we maintained our aim to get healthier. We exercised every day and ate healthy.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015


Hey just a quick update, my computer is crashing and I can't write my post. Before I get back to be regular (posting that is :) ) I will need to get back home and buy a new laptop.

I'm using my wife's computer right now, but could be kick out any time. I'll try to follow all of you but if I see it put a hardship on our relationship, I'll have to do a tearing choice LOL

It's not because I am not as present that I'm not watching all of you, so be good to yourself I just want good news.

By the way, my No PS pursuit is going great even with one picture someone that I was considering to be my friend posted (FogDog).

Monday, April 13, 2015

Running Out of Time

Everyone had a good weekend? If you consider sleeping as being good, mine was really good as on Saturday I was napping almost every 2 hours, and even though I had my usual hours of sleep, I was still feeling tired. Sunday was busy, we went to the flea market, Sam’s club and later in the evening we drove to the airport to pick up our daughter.

This morning when I woke up I was still feeling tired; it took me a long time to finally go for my walk. I walked about 10 K. steps, that was enough at that point.

We are going to visit the Clearwater Marine Aquarium today, so more steps will be involved. Also tonight I’m going to do my run training. So it will still be a good exercise day.

Speaking of run training, I had started the C25K training but I realized it’s not for me. The C25K program doesn’t take in consideration the weight or the physical shape of the person. If you are obese and try to follow that program, you might hurt yourself rather than do good.

In my case, I learned when I was younger and fitter that my knees were weak and could easily be hurt. Countless times I started a running program to get in shape only to end up having to stop because I was getting pain instead of health.

So keeping my knees in mind I created my own training schedule. As I lose weight, I will increase the time I run until I reach 30 minutes of run. 30 minutes is about 5 k (3 M.) at a slow jogging pace and that is all I want for now.
Why would I want to run when walking is working so great for me? The main answer is time. I walk over 3 hours per day. When I eventually add more training (weight and flexibility), taking into account any sports, including pickleball I would be spending in excess of 4.5 hours a day exercising. That is just not manageable. Olympic is not in my goal.

By running 30 minutes a day, I will drop my walking to about 45 minutes. This will leave me more time to diversify my training.

I’m including my run training schedule. I will be running 3-4 times a week.
Before running I always walk briskly about 5 minutes as a warm up. I also walk briskly 5 minutes at the end to cool down. It’s very important to have a warm-up and cool down period to prevent from hurting yourself.

My training plan is designed for me, I can get too excited so it’s a way to slow me down. However for others, this might still be too fast too quickly. Everyone should always aim for a respective feasible goal.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Weight day

This morning I stepped on the scale: 186.8 was my new number. This is a loss of 4.2 lbs in 2 weeks. It is the 10th consecutive week I have lost weight, for a total of 28.2 lbs. I'm so excited with the result, my goal is 2.5 pounds per 2 week any thing more is just outstanding.

In the past 2 weeks we had company over. However, we stayed focus on our health journey. We didn't have wine even when our company had some, we ate healthy and we kept exercising. I consider those past weeks as a success which showed we did not get derailed; NOT even tempted. So far, we have spent a lot of time on the road, we have had company over, and nothing has affected us, we are so motivated.

This week our youngest daughter is coming for a visit. On Tuesday, we'll go kayaking for 5.5 miles on a river. Not really an exercise as this will be more of an activity, but one of  enjoyment as the kayak will be going down river nice and slow. Pics will be posted, I'm sure.

Yesterday there was no blog, my computer is going kaput on me, as I'm typing this, I have my fingers crossed hoping I can finish my post before my laptop quits again. In 2 weeks when we get back home, one of my priorities will be to buy a new laptop. I'm not crazy about that as I have all my tools on this one and I don't feel like learning one more operating systems; nothing I can do about it, it's time to move to 2015.

Are you as lost as I am about food? This is so complex, all I wanted was to eat healthy.
Here are 2 articles I think are worth reading:

Decoding the Nutrition Label: Tips for people with diabetes

This one might change the way you look at Fat:

The science of saturated fat: A big fat surprise about nutrition?


Friday, April 10, 2015

Day 2 of the No PS Challenge

Water anyone?

The more I research about the subject the more I’m convinced that Public Enemy Number One is SUGAR. It is in EVERYTHING. You just can’t buy anything without this poison in it.

Since February, we have been eating mostly fresh vegetables and fruits and lean meat. It’s a back to basic kind of eating habits, AND it works! The pounds are coming off our back at an unprecedented speed.

I don’t know if you’ve watched the youtube clip I had on my blog a few days ago, I forgot his name but one of the doctor when asked: “What is worst, sugar or fat?” “Sugar a thousand times” was his answer!

For decades I have been focusing on “No fat” products. I was thinking I was at least buying food that would not harm me. I never looked at the sugar content… So I guess when I thought I was fat, I should really have thought I was sweet! Isn’t that something?

I posted about my breakfast before thinking it was the best. Every morning I have one cup of: Fruits, yogurt and Honey Nut Cheerios. Because of the No PS challenge, I looked at the sugar content of:

No fat Yogourt - 13 grams of sugar and this is far from being the worst.

Honey Nut Cheerios - 9 grams of sugar for ¾ of a cup, note what General Mills did here, their Nutrition’s table is for ¾ of a cup so if you ONLY look at the calories in the table (like I was doing) it is 110 calories. For one cup of Honey Nut Cheerios it’s in reality 12 grams of sugar and 146 calories.

Below is the recommendation from Doctors who are independent from the food industries:

- WOMEN MAX OF 6 tsp of sugar per day
- MEN MAX OF 9 tsp of sugar per day

4 g. of sugar = 1 tsp

So my “healthy” breakfast had 25 g. of sugar which amounts to about 6 tsp. For my wife that’s her daily limit, for me, I can still “enjoy” 3 more tsp in my whole day, WOUPPIDOU!

For now I have switched from honey nut cheerios to plain cheerios. The nutrition table is for 1 cup (same company but they base it on a whole cup!) and it’s 1 g. of sugar. So the switch saves me about 3 tsp. of sugar PER day.

I am considering switching the yogurt for whole milk which will provide me with enough energy and less sugar consumption. UPDATE: As I was finishing writing this paragraph, I got up to look at the nutrition value of our NON FAT milk… 12 g. of sugar!!!! I am steaming right now… MILK! Why on earth would they mess up with something that should be healthy!!!

Tomorrow I will not have the word “sugar” in my post. I need to find something positive to write about, if only for my own sanity.

Is anyone else in shock? Is anyone doing anything to get their sugar intake lower? Any tricks?

Look at that, it’s Friday! I hope you have a sweet weekend without the poison that sugar is!

I like to share a link from Jan, she left a comment with this link and I enjoy it. I just love it when we share useful information.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Day 1 of the No PS Challenge

This morning when I woke up, I did a quick survey of all systems: Heart – beating; brain – Slow (as usual) but functioning; Teeth – All there; Bladder – Oh ya I have to get that emptied before continuing…

I survived day 1! There are just twenty nine more days to go. I know the end will be so sweet!

I encountered my biggest obstacle this morning… No coffee! I take my coffee with some sugar substitutes so because of the No PS challenge, coffee is off limit for me.

Without coffee to boost my morning and get me going, it’s like going to Europe in a row boat. It takes a while to get where you want but you will get there.

So I sat with my laptop, couldn’t read much, couldn’t write my post, could barely find how to open solitaire.

After half an hour, I had absolutely nothing done and it was time to go for my morning walk. How I managed to put on my clothes on and my sneakers is a mystery, I can’t remember!

I walked 14,700 steps. I might have been conscious only for the last half.

While walking, I was thinking about my drinking problem; I don’t like water. 

My daily liquid intake consisted of my gallons of delicious coffee, half a diet coke and some sips of water between my coffee and my soft drink.

Without coffee and coke, there is ONLY one liquid available to me: Water! For 30 straight days!

I was at step number 8,678 when it hit me! I could always improve on the water Mother Nature so generously provides. I’ll get a water pitcher and insert lemons and oranges in it. It will be sweeter without being sweet and tastier. 

Then I thought I will also get mint leaves and once in a while, add that to the water pitcher. I was so excited, that was all I could think about for the reminder of my walk.

Simple solution to MY complex problem, just genius! Hopefully there is a Nobel Price for great ideas, I’ll be the front runner, Right? Maybe not, I’m sure all of you are already doing something similar. I am interested to know of any good ideas you might have.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

No PS challenge

Drum rolls please: “Ladies and Gentleman; all humans in the Weight race; Thin or not so Thin people; you are hereby challenged to the first ever ‘No PS challenge’!”

“WHAT THE HECK IS HE TALKING ABOUT?” I can hear you ask.

Yesterday’s post was about the poison that sugar is and that some of us are addicted to. So this challenge is “No Poison Sugar” for a whole month. For most of us it means 30 days but once converted in US, it means 45 days for the US residents. Just kidding 30 days no matter where you are.

Think about how great it would be for your body to have a month where you don’t have this sugar cloud over your head. The challenge will be a good excuse to refuse cakes or other sweets people bring to work. “Sorry I can’t have any, I am a participant in an international No PS challenge!” Won’t that be sweet? :)

Are any of you folks excited yet? If you’re not, I have one more incentive; I will create a “No PS challenge” badge of honor that you will receive upon completing your one month. You will be authorized to proudly display it on your blog, it will be yours to do with whatever you want. You will have earned it! And if you decide to get it tattooed, please send me a picture. LOL

You still need more motivation… I’ll create a tab on my blog, it will be an “honor Roll” section where all the successful “awardees” will get their profile name, date of completion, social security number, bank information with the PIN and a link to their blog.

“Where do I sign?” ask the salty ones.

There is no signing in, just leave a comment if you are starting your “No PS challenge” and install web cams in every room of your home so that we can monitor you are not eating sweet.

When you complete the challenge SUCCESSFULLY, drop another comment and I’ll award you the badge. Isn’t it simple?

One more thing, like every worthy challenge there are rules:

1. If you eat any sweet at any time, you must re-start your day counter.

2. If you have a cookie or ice cream or anything sweet in your hand right now and you drop it in the garbage without taking one more bite or lick… you can start your counter TODAY.

3. I’ll let you decide what is in the sweet category as far as you are concerned. But it should include: Refined Sugar, or any other substitutes, fruit juice, and the worst one of them all: soft drinks.

4. Fruits are the exception, let’s enjoy more of those.

Even with my own turn around, I will be participating in the challenge, I will go the extra mile and not have coffee (because I put Stevia in it), I will not have Diet Coke, I will not eat sugar in any form unless I can’t avoid it (our yoghurt is really healthy but it contains some sugar). As you may have read in a previous post, I have 3 bags of chocolate waiting for me, they will be re-routed to the garbage can. 

You can’t avoid all sugars, it’s in everything, but you can select the food with the least poison in it. 

I’d like to thank Elaine for her comment yesterday with a link about sugar, and I’m adding another one from the CBC News The Fifth Estate.
Any one ready for the “No PS challenge”?

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Sweet Poison

Today it’s my wife birthday, she is 20,089 days young!

We are going to eat birthday cake all day. The cake of life with a thick layer of health icing.

Happy birthday girl, you are like wine, so delicious :)

In yesterday’s post I unscrupulously undressed and show nakedness. I admitted I had addictions, and I want to expand on what I think was my worst one: “I was addicted to sugar” 

Just a reminder: I’m not a doctor or nutritionist; I’m just someone who has spent 55 years walking this earth, reading, observing and learning. From time to time, I might unwillingly state facts that are wrong. There are always people and studies to contradict one another about everything, including nutrition. So I’m adding this disclaimer here; if you do some research and check out nutrition facts and you don’t agree with me, it’s ok as I post about facts I believe to be true.

Maybe all of you already know this fact: I read a few months ago about refined sugar, it equated it to a poison. The reason it’s so bad is because to be digested, refined sugar drains and leaches our body of vitamins and minerals. Refined sugar is not digested by our stomach, our liver converts it into fat.

“According to Statistics Canada, the average Canadian consumes 26 teaspoons of sugar per day. That works out to 40 kilograms per year.” That’s a lot of fat, folks. I can’t remember where I read it but it’s even worse in the U.S.

From what I read, a lot of that sugar intake is from soft drinks. Watch-out for those!

Some time ago, my youngest daughter lost 114 pounds. She took two years to do this great accomplishment.

Three years ago, she hit rock bottom, she was down to 150 lbs. From the beginning of her journey, she has been keeping track of the amount of food she eats every day and she has been exercising. Unfortunately, even while still eating less than what a women her age needs to maintain her weight, it has slowly crept back up. In the past 3 years she gained about 25 lbs. She wants to lose those extra pounds.

It’s hard to see a loved one struggling while doing everything they can. In order to help her lose that weight, she recently consulted a nutritionist. The nutritionist asked her to eat normally, stop weighing all her food but to keep track of everything she ate until their next meeting. Not a hard thing to do, my daughter has been tracking her food using Spark People’s web site and can show everything she ate for the past 5 years or so. The nutritionist also told my daugher to stop eating lifesavers and peppermint candy!

My daughter was eating one lifesavers after every lunch and one peppermint candy after supper. One lousy lifesavers is worth about 10 calories! I thought “Come on, don’t listen to the nutritionist, eat your lifesavers”. The nutritionist told my daughter that she was severely addicted to sugar and that one lifesavers a day was feeding her addiction. And when you have an addiction you have a craving and in her case, she always felt like she was starving.


It makes so much sense to me now! When I started my health journey, I didn’t plan to ban anything, I thought I’d eat less and temporarily cut off all the junk food, cold turkey. It turns out I actually stopped eating the wrong stuff long enough that when I decided I could re-introduce the “banned” food, I didn’t want them anymore!

What I think happened is that my brain knowing it would get that junk food in a short future, didn’t torture me in wanting them now. But by the time I was ready to eat all that junk food, I was not craving it anymore and therefore didn’t suffer from withdrawal. It turned out to be the easiest change ever.

In the past, I tried to control myself around junk food, eating just one little sweet, just one small ice cream cone; it didn’t work too good for me and before long, I wanted more. Starving for junk food is draining and it takes so much energy. From the beginning, by surrendering to my need to be healthy and by being tough with myself and disciplined the whole process quickly became easier and easier with each passing day.

DON’T surrender; you can rid yourself of any addictions!

Tomorrow I have a challenge for you guys, until then, have a great and leaner day. Thanks for reading, you are such a source of inspiration to me.

Monday, April 6, 2015

My philosophy

Was everyone good at Easter? Maybe it’s the 43 grams of chocolate I had yesterday but this morning my mind is pulling me in so many directions; it’s like doing a split, but splitter I am not! So I’ll go back to the foundation of this lean(er) tower. This week, I’ll keep building up my tower.

“Talk the Talk, Walk the Walk” - Twenty four hours a day, I walk the walk.

I mentioned in earlier posts that my problem with food was one of moderation. This was the whole truth and nothing but… however I realized it was not that whole to start with. Maybe my sub-conscious mind was trying to hide the whole truth from me! However I realized I had addictions. Some of those were extreme and some were light, but an addiction is still an addiction.

I was addicted to sugar. Most days I ate two desserts and some sweets during the evening after I fed my addiction to chips.

I was addicted to wine. A glass of wine was never enough, I over drank almost every two days, sometimes more often. I’m lucky, I was not dependant but still 
too much of something it’s never a good thing.

I was addicted to fries. I must have had French fries 2-3 times a week. It was the food I turned to when I wanted a side dish of vegetable!

I was addicted to TV. I was watching over 7 hours a day. I had no time to exercise, let’s face it; the commercials were just not long enough for me to step outside and walk. So I stepped to the cupboards and the fridge.

You know what is great about the previous paragraphs? “I was”

When I started my journey to health, I didn’t have a clear path in front of me, I didn’t have a map to a healthy me, I didn’t have a good knowledge of food, healthy or otherwise. I didn’t read books about dieting or lifestyle eating habits. I never told myself, I’ll cut sweet, wine, fries and watched less TV.

But on the very first day, my lifestyle changed because my plan is to eat less, eat healthier and exercise. This plan is a drastic lifestyle change (this is where I walk the walk). It’s not a “get 10 pounds off” fast scheme.

It’s hard to explain this transformation; the only analogy I can think of is my weight is like I am on top of a hill and I need to get down from it. I am going down and I have this truck pushing me, I have no other choice but go down, I will never go back up. The hill is so steep, I can’t see the bottom. At one point, I don’t even need gas as I am still getting momentum.

The gas is my brain, it is silent and it’s not trying to sabotage me. Because it’s keeping quiet I have peace or as Lori Lori put it, I am calm about Food.

So my philosophy is to let go, just keep going down the hill. I don’t need brakes; I have my vehicle in perfect control. I let go of the gas but I know at some point at the bottom, gas will be required to continue my journey, so while I’m going down, I’m also working on the most important aspect of this journey: My brain!

In the next posts, I’ll come back in details, so stay tune!

Thanks folks for reading, maybe you don’t know but you are part of this pushing truck!