Archive for September, 2010

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Has this ever happened to you?

September 30, 2010

Seriously… I need to tell you about the last hour of my day.  Let me set it up.  I’m starving, and need to pick up water and dinner for this evening.  Had a decent breakfast and lunch, leaving me 20 Weight Watchers pts left for my dinner.  As I stated earlier this week in my last blog, I didn’t have the best of weigh-ins this week, so I’m trying to be extra good not only so my next weigh-in isn’t terrible, but because I’m in for a TERRIBLE weekend diet-wise due to upcoming… shenanigans… to take place.  So… I leave the house, and here’s what happens:

I go to the supermarket, grab the case of water and put it in the cart.  And the buffalo chicken by the door looks AMAZING, so I grab that too.  Along with a side of coleslaw.  I start walking to the register, turn around and put away the chicken and coleslaw – can’t have it, been too good this week.  I grab a Chicken Caesar Salad, and head to the register.  I walk PAST the register and head towards the hot dogs, because I decide my 1pt hot dogs are gonna be my dinner instead of the salad.  I grab the hot dogs and head over to the hot dog buns, grab them… and then decide that the hot dogs aren’t a great idea so I immediately put the buns back and take a short-cut down to the frozen food aisle.  Which is where I saw my all-time favorite food – Soft Pretzels.

I stop. I stare.  I open the freezer and figure out the points per pretzel.  4 points… not bad.  I put them in my cart and close the freezer.  I get back to the hot dog section and put back the hot dogs, look down at my cart and see water, the salad… and pretzels.  The gahdamn pretzels.  WHAT THE HELL AM I DOING?!?!  I go and put back the pretzels… think about it… then put them back again.  I’m now disgusted at myself, put the salad back and just buy the water.  35 minutes in the supermarket – $3.78.

So I’m on the way home, and decide that the ice cream and frozen yogurt I saw when I went down the frozen food aisle looked DEE-licious, so I stop by the convenience store on my way home to see if they have anything.  Park… pull in… straight to the freezer.

Where I stood.  For 7 minutes.  You really have no idea how long 7 minutes is until you just stand doing nothing for that long.  But that’s what I did.  Stand.  For 7 minutes.  I didn’t get the ice cream, but have FINALLY made a decision – that Swedish Fish will be the item to get my sweet tooth/ sugar kick out of the way.  So I go over to the Swedish Fish… and they’re OUT.  I now aimlessly wander to see if there’s ANYTHING I want.  NOTHING.  10 minutes in the convenience store – $0.00

As I pull out of the convenience store, across the parking lot is my old friend Wendy… as in Wendy’s.  So I drive over to pick up a spicy chicken sandwich – and go right around the drive-through because I realize it’s the WORSE idea I’ve had yet, simply because I’m starving.  So I drive past the drive-thru… and get BACK in line, because it’s not really THAT bad of an idea.  I wise up, pull out and head home – this time for good.  2 laps around Wendy’s – $0.00

Between travel to and from location I spent an hour out and about in the monsoon that’s engulfed us in this area and spent $3.78 on water.  AND I’M EXHAUSTED – physically, but even moreso, mentally.

This is something that happens to me every so often.  It’s not always easy, but I need to be a little smarter when I do things like go to a grocery store when I’m hungry.  Not a good move for someone in my position.

Phew!  That felt good.  I feel better now.

Oh, and what did I FINALLY have for dinner?  As I type this – in front of a bottle of water and some baby carrots – I just don’t know yet.  What I do know is that it won’t screw up my progress this week… so that’s a plus!

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How Do YOU Stay Motivated???

September 27, 2010

Since I started this blog, I have received some amazing feedback and support… and even met a few new people along the way.  It’s been great!  But, as I said when this first started – this blog is an accountability for all of my actions.  I will not hold back, even when I don’t do well… like now.

I had a REAL tough week last week.  My running was terrible, my WeightWatchers – although I still stayed on track – could have been better, and I was very snippy with people.  Problem is… I don’t know why.  Could’ve been the real big dinner I had with Mom and Dad when they came down, could be that I’m slow right now at work and I’m not used to hitting valleys like this, could be that I’m just very lonely right now… I really don’t know. 

So… I decided I need to reach out to some of the people that have motivated me in my quest to Total Health.  These three individuals are some of the most positive people I have ever been blessed to know.  I asked them the same question:  “What is it that keeps you motivated every single day?”  I can’t begin to tell you how amazing their answers were, so I’ll let them tell you with their own words.

JORDAN – Jordan (real name Marieo, AKA Superman) is one of the most well-rounded individuals I know.  He is a decorated veteran, a dedicated family man with a bee-YOUUUU-tee-ful wife and remarkable children, runs his own company and has been in the law enforcement/ security business for over 18 years.  If you only knew what this man has done to protect you (yes, you who may have never met him or seen him before) it would blow you away.  I am fortunate enough to call him a friend and, although I am no longer married, he was a lector at my wedding which to me was a truly special moment that day.  Here’s a snippet of his answer:


“My motivation is and has been my faith in Christ. Whenever I’ve found myself doing the wrong things I almost instinctively knew that something bad would come my way and sure enough it did. Likewise Whenever I made tough decisions that I knew were the right things to do I always seemed to be shown favor and positive things would happen in my life.”

“I believe the measure of a person is not what you have or who you know but instead where you have been and what you have taken from your experiences and how that knowledge will allow to bless someone else’s life while improving upon your own.”

SCOTT – Scott and I have known each other for about 2 years now through my boy Vince (aka DJ Kuba from my ‘Quiet On The Set!’ podcast).  We have common interests, we chat on Facebook over things like Yankees/ Red Sox, Giants/ Patriots, Nets/ Celtics (well, there hasn’t been much to talk about on that last one…) and music.  But Scott is, without a doubt, the single most positive person I know.  When I set out to lose all of this weight, I thought of Scott and what he’s done to lose now almost 90 pounds in the last year.  Literally… my first thought was him.  I saw skinny Scott and about fell out.  He was the life of the party… drink anyone under the table… need to do something CRAZY – he was your guy.  Kinda sounds like this other guy I know – me.  So, when I saw Scott doing these amazing things, I actually realized that I could do it as well.  It was the first time I felt a change could really be successful, because I saw a lot of me in him – and he was doing it.  Here’s some of what he said:


“There are alot of things that keep me on the right track but the biggest part is the love and support from my friends and family so definitely use that as a big motivator. Everyday people say how proud they are of me and that I need to keep it up. I listen.”

“My motivators are knowing everyday that I take care of myself and stay on track and keep “bringing it” and working hard its going to benefit me later in life. Knowing that Ive been an inspiration to you and others makes me proud of what Ive been able to accomplish and it makes me want to achieve even higher goals and keep pushing myself to new levels of success.”


“At the end of the day there is no one that will benefit from all your hard work than you. There isn’t a single good reason not to do it. It will help you out in so many aspects of your life just as it has for me.”

DEMETRIUS – Demetrius (I still call him Face, but he goes by D-Trust as well… it’s hard to keep up!) will be more famous than all y’all… trust me.  And I’m not kidding either.  This man sings, dances, acts – and wins awards for his performances, produces, manages talent… plus I’m sure I missed a few things as well.  Face pushes harder and works on his craft more than any person in any job I know.  The man simply never quits.  And he doesn’t just do it for himself – he tries to help others in these fields succeed as well.  Plus, the dude’s NEVER UNHAPPY.  He’s got a million dollar smile and always has it on.  The only time he’s ever mad is when he gives all of us blessings (inside joke for Demetrius fans LMAO).  On top of all this, he too is a veteran as well as an amazing father.  I needed to find out how he stays on the grind and stays poistive throughout everything he does, and here’s what he said:


“Please know that we are all human and there are temptations, distractions, and all other sorts of challenges we must overcome daily. There will be folks that tell us we can’t do it for whatever reasons they may have but, we must remember why we are doing what we are doing.”

“I don’t have time for the negative. However, I will use it as fuel to keep me positive. It only re-enforces what I’m trying to accomplish in my life. There are so many that want to see us fail but, there 10x that many that want us to succeed. I wish I could tell you I’ve never slipped or not made the right choice but, I don’t like to lie so that I can’t tell you. Just be honest with yourself when you get weak and ask yourself if what you’re doing at that moment is helping you towards your goal. What I will tell you is that for each step backward I may fall I take three giant steps forward to make up for them. “

These gentlemen are all really amazing people… and they’re just normal dudes!  They have fantastic core values, amazing focus and determination I can only hope to gain someday. 

Now, it’s great to ask for help and advice, but it’s only effective if you can take something from it.  After hearing with these three men had to say, I realized a few things:

*  I definitely need to reconnect with my faith, 
*  I need to remember that I can rely on my friends and family and that this isn’t a battle I need to wage on my own,
*  I need to always remember the end-game… what my goals are… and whatever decisions I make I need to know if its going to help me or hurt me in my quest to complete my goal, and
*  I am not perfect, and I will stumble… but it’s how I react to that stumble and what I do afterward that will ensure I may have lost a battle, but will not lose the war.

Finally – to Jordan, Scotty and Demetrius… thank you.  You’re all true inspirations to me and I am fortunate to call each of you a friend.  Thank you for allowing me to post your words of wisdom… I know they helped me and I am sure they will help others as well. 

And last but not least… there’s no way I can end this particular blog without saying this:


“TAKE CARE AND MAD BLESSINGS!”

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Quick Update!

September 22, 2010

I’ve been having a lot of people asking about how I have been doing, as my blog posts have been slightly specific and not talking about my progress per se.  So here are some bullet points to catch everyone up… and I promise I’ll be better about getting this information out to y’all.  🙂

*  WEIGHT – I’m officially 296 as of the writing of this blog – 42 lbs thus far.  I haven’t been under 300 lbs in a long time, and the last time I was I was on a crazy fad diet that was VERY unhealthy for me (there will be a separate post about that experience in the near future) so I’m excited that I’m doing it and, so far, doing it right by eating healthy and exercising.

*  WORKOUTS – I’m signed up for two more 5K’s with my awesome running partner… one at the end of October on the Jersey Shore (no, it’s not the Beat That Beat Down 5K… but if there was one of those I’d TOTALLY run it…) and a second, a Turkey Trot, on Thanksgiving day.  Hopefully by early next year I’ll make a move up to 10K’s but for now, the 5K’s are plenty challenging for someone as big as me.  I’m doing a combination of running and P90X, and soon I am going to do a full P90X cycle instead of just filling in certain workouts on off-days for running.

*  AWARDS – Yes, I’m not kidding… I actually won a contest regarding this quest!  My friend Dana from HS had a 6-week Weight Loss Challenge, which coincidentally started on the same day I started Weight Watchers.  I decided to enter, and the challenge was who could lose the most % of weight in the 6 weeks…. and although I had a VERY formidable challenger in Lauren, I won – Yaayyy!!!  My prize?  INSANITY!  It’s essentially P90X on steroids… and definitely not something I’m gonna be using any time soon.  But – as I get closer to the Mudder, this is definitely gonna come in handy.  I got to choose this prize because Dana works for BeachBody and sells their awesome products – so if you want some, hit her up here and she can talk to you and get you hooked up with P90X, Insanity, Slim in 6, Shakeology and so much more.  Let her know I sent you!

SUPPORT – You guys have been really amazing – I need to make sure y’all know how much I appreciate it.  So many people have reached out to me to help me out… it’s actually kinda humbling.  I’ve got great tips on recipes (thanks Lori for the best snack ever… 2 pt. Onion Rings!), diets (Ericka sent me an amazing diet that looks like might be my diet on the last half of this journey), gear (i finally found something to carry my car keys… Thank you, Nancy!), workouts (too many people to list… but video of the foam roller WILL be coming when I get one lol!).  But, and most importantly, PLEASE keep all the support and advice coming.  I really need all the help I can get.  I’m learning and welcome all types of feedback – good and bad… uhh, I mean… constructive… so by all means if you see something that you can help with or think I might be doing wrong – LET ME KNOW!

I guess that’s it… if I think of anything else I’ll add it.  Again, y’all rock.  Thank you so much for reading… and I’ll reach out again real soon!

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Football Sunday – Funday… or is it?

September 16, 2010

Football Sundays used to be fun.  SO MUCH FUN.  But when football season ‘officially’ started this past Sunday, it had a slightly different flavor for me… literally.  You see, as goes the diet so go all of the dee-lish foods I normally bury myself in while watching Eli and the Giants hand the ‘Skins another obvious, yet fully entertaining, defeat.  Bye bye Doritos, Salt ‘n’ Vinegar Potato Chips, amazing beers, Fire Wings, etc.  So what’s a man to do in such a situation?

Well the first thing I realized was a lot deeper than I thought:  Football Sundays was a trigger for my binge eating, just like boredom and stress are.  For a long, long time I really thought that it was all stress and boredom… if I could find a way to work through those issues w/o eating it was gonna be SMOOTH sailing.  Well, apparently that isn’t the case.

I kid you not – when Sunday NFL Countdown came on, my mouth started watering and I immediately started thinking about “what was I gonna eat” later – and it was all REALLY yummy.  I started getting ready to head to the store to stock up, and then it hit me that all the work I have done so far didn’t prepare me for this unexpected cause of gluttony… The Pigskin.

I’m now at a crossroads in more ways than one – not only do I need to figure out what the hell I’m gonna eat on Sundays (which you all will help me with :)…), but also now that there may be more triggers that could send me off the deep end.  And that’s huge.

Realizing that there are gonna be more triggers – things I have never realized wold put me in that mindset – is actually VERY scary to me.  More therapy fodder for sure, but for the last few months I was convinced I had two – stress and boredom.  I could say ‘no’ around my friends (hell, my best friends have turned my Weight Watchers points into a game), I can easily choose healthier options when eating out, going to a movie and food shopping.  I honestly thought I had made GREAT progress.  It’s progress, without a doubt, but far less that I apparently have.

So I come to you, my readers, for a little help.  Gimme some good healthy snack options, recipes, etc… Gimme some eating out options if I need to go to a bar to watch the Giants, Steelers (my loyalty is to my G-Men, but I’m a bandwagon Steel Curtain fan due to many people close to me being fans), etc… or at least gimme some advice as to how so many of you, my healthy friends, have managed to deal with this situation.

*** NOTE – Portion control is off the table at the moment… I’ll put it out there for yas; I’m not sure if I can only eat 1 or 2 wings, or a handful of potato chips.  I know that eventually it will be a good choice for me but, for now, I’m not so sure. 🙂 ***

Thanks, friends… I’m looking forward to your feedback – and enjoy your Sunday Funday!

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Tough Mudder – The Explanation

September 11, 2010

Hey everyone!

I know it’s been a week… sorry about that.  Got some things I’m workin’ on which I will share with you all soon enough – exciting things – so stay tuned!

In the meantime, I’ve had several people this week as me to explain what the HELL this race is I’m gonna be doing at the end of this quest – the Tough Mudder.  I’ll let the TM team explain it in their own words, then I’ll give y’all some details:

Tough Mudder is the TOUGHEST one day event on the planet. This is not your average mud run or boring, spirit-crushing road race. It’s Ironman meets Burning Man: our 7-12 mile obstacle courses are designed by British Special Forces to test all around toughness, strength, stamina, fitness, camaraderie, and mental grit. 

Now, the specific Mudder I am running, with the course layout and obstacle description, can be found hereEssentially, combine a 10K with American Gladiators and Wipeout, throw in a little military boot camp and ‘Viola!’ you have the Tough Mudder.  There are other races that are similar, but those are either:

a)  shorter,
b)  less obstacles, or 
c)  both. 

There are 17 obstacles in all, but here are some of the highlights… I will be shot with water cannons, crawl under barbed wire, climb 10 foot walls, run up as well as carry tree stumps up and down high grade hills, swim through underwater tunnels and end by running through fire.  But – there’s a cool adult Slip-n-Slide in the middle!!!…???…?!?!

 
As you all know I do love to do things for a great cause, and this is no exception.  While, this year, many of you generously donated to the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life on behalf of me and my team The Pineapple Avengers (PIIIIIIIIIIIINE… APPLE!), next year I will be doing this for the Wounded Warrior Project (info on the WWP can be found here). 

But, there are selfish reasons I chose the Tough Mudder as my goal.  I need to do a lot more than just lose weight, or get in shape, or see a therapist.  I am going to need to make these types of things MAJOR FOCUSES in my life if there is any way I am going to complete something so difficult.  I know it’s cliche, but I need to master – and embrace – ‘mind, body, and soul’ if I am going to accomplish this and join the fraternity of Mudders.  I’m not fooling anyone – myself included – when I realize that by the time I run this race I will be 37 years old.  I have no idea how idea how young or old most of these competitors are going to be… I’m just hoping that the camaraderie piece of this event comes into play and these young’ns decide to help the old guy out if he needs it!

Last thing about this race – and most important for me – is your support.  You’ll be able to donate to the WWP like I mentioned earlier but what would be really awesome for me… and probably super fun for you… is if you actually came and watched this amazing event!  Yes, you can watch the event, cheer on all the competitors and then stay for the after-party/ concert that’s held later on that day with everyone who competed!  It’s only 15 bucks… how can you go wrong watching all of us do this crazy s**t for only 15 bucks?!?!  🙂

Anyhow, I hope this answers some of the questions you guys had.  I’m tellin’ ya – check out the website here and you get some great info as well.

As always, you can find me on Facebook, follow me on Twitter and subscribe to this here post as well… thanks so much for the support!

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