Thursday, January 29, 2009
Carrying yourself around at 534 pounds is not easy, walking up a flight of stairs may as well have been going for a run because by the time I reached the 13th stair bliss was how it felt that there was not 14 stairs and my heart was racing, beating very hard all while pride was held in by trying to breath slowly so that my wife would not pick up on the fact that my chest felt like it was going to explode. Sliding into a car and having my belly touch the steering wheel in a full sized car sucking it in when first entering to not let anyone see that it was happening was the norm only letting it out after pulling away because no one would notice while the car was moving right? Life was not fun nor easy at 534 pounds, it was not what one would call peachy. Many nights I would wake up and have heartburn so bad that I could do nothing but get up and eat a couple slices of bread, drink a glass of milk followed by a handful of Tums, Constantly fidgeting because sitting too long in one position started making things ache or in some cases just plain old hurt. I literally had days where my chest felt like it had been pressurized just from minimal movement and have had the thought "Is my heart going to give out today?" and that folks is not a happy happy joy joy moment and if I am being honest it was scary and is what ultimately made me decide to do this weight loss gig.
How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. making promises to myself and my children and my wife to eat healthy to make sure that I will be around to show my son how to drive a car, walk my daughter down the aisle one day, to hold my Wifes hand while we take a stroll at 70 years old all of these things were but questions not so long ago, will I be here to teach my son to drive? will I be here to walk my beautiful daughter down the aisle one day? will my wife have my hand to hold in her golden years? now that answer is leaning towards the yes column because I am taking control of my health and dropping the unwanted weight that has attached itself to my body over the past few years of neglecting it. Movie theater seats are no longer my nemesis, I have conquered the booth and can honestly say that I have enriched my life as well as my families. I took my weight problem and "This is Sparta" kicked it into oblivion along with many of my fears that I had before making this decision.
I make my own decisions now where health is concerned, food addiction? whats that? while I was writing this a song comes to mind because of the lyrics, Pearl Jam "Elderly woman behind the counter in a small town"
I seem to recognize your face
haunting familiar yet I can't seem to place it
cannot find the candle of thought to light your name
lifetimes are catching up with me
all these changes taking place
I wish I'd seen the place
but no ones ever taken me.
hearts and thoughts they fade, fade away
I swear I recognize your breath
memories like fingerprints are slowly raising
of course you can't see me for I'm not my former
its hard when your stuck upon a shelf
I changed by not changing at all
small town predicts my fate
perhaps thats what no one wants to see
I just want to scream hello
my god its been so long never dreamed you'd return
but now here you are and here I am
hearts and thoughts they fade away.
Apparently so does fat! Now of course that song is not about a fat guy that has lost an entire persons worth of weight but surely you can see where there are parallels that could be applied to how I feel about what I have gone through in the past year. I Know that in my excitement I posted that picture above in a post late last night but I honestly felt that it should be posted again so there it is! a quote from my brother "I cannot ever remember you looking that way, you look like a different person" My cousin said that "You should stop losing weight now so that I can recognize you again" and I am smaller than when I met my wife so she is also seeing me this way for the first time in her life, and it made my mother cry, all of that feels better than you can possibly know if you have not lost a substantial amount of weight. I mean C'mon these are all people that have grown up living with me, next door to me or are married to me, I would be lying if I said it didn't feel good, it was a lot of hard work that was worth every minute and more.
If you are over weight and feel like it is impossible to drop the extra baggage, if you feel like I use to, like there is nothing that you can do to help make yourself a more healthy and happy person please know that you can and there IS a way to do it, the first couple of steps can be hard, and there will be times that you feel like its just not worth the effort but trust me, I was in that position just 394 days ago and it feels much better to be on this side of the fence. I have heard the saying "nothing tastes as good as thin feels" and as a 534 pound guy I always despised that statement and thought "now how can thin feel better than an extra large double bacon pizza? C'mon now" but I always knew that there was some truth to it and I have to admit though I am not "thin" by any stretch of the imagination that "thinner" DOES in fact feel better than any double bacon pizza that I have ever had in my life time and I can't say it any plainer than that.
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
I took a couple pictures of myself tonight and just had to share, when I started this weight loss thang I initially said to myself that I wanted to drop 100 pounds and had no clue how that would look on me because I didn't even know exactly what I weighed on day one. Here I am 178 plus pounds lighter than just over a year ago and I am honestly humbled by what I have accomplished, I never thought that I would be 178 pounds lighter in the time frame that I have done this in. I still look in the mirror and see that other guy that was lumbering along struggling to make it up the 4 stairs that was on his front porch all while carrying a sack of cheese burgers from McNasty or an extra large double bacon pizza (yeah I have actually ordered an extra large double bacon pizza!) but tonight I decided I would take a picture or two to photoshop into a compare shot and I actually just sat here and stared at it for a minute or 3 when I was done. You see these "before and after" pictures and sometimes ya gotta wonder if they are real and then you see some and they are just insanely awesome in the differences and when I saw the photo below I Know that I have made HUGE changes in myself and I think it looks significantly different enough that if it wasn't me I might doubt it was real!
That first picture was taken on Dec 29th 2007 and I can remember the day like it was yesterday, it had snowed and we brought the kids out to play in our back yard and I am actually holding my daughter in this picture but I cropped her out, but I can remember thinking "take the picture take the picture take the picture" as my wife was shooting it because my back was starting to tighten up. I was in a frame of mind at that point which said that if I was to lose this weight a surgery would be how it happened and it was literally 2 days before I started this blog and my new lifestyle. That second picture was taken tonight, Jan 28th 2009 just 393 days later and I honestly don't recognize that guy from Dec any more, and he is not allowed back here so I don't think I will be reacquainting myself with him any time soon.
That ends this late edition of as the fat guy turns, I just HAD to share this photo with you all, thanks for reading along and if this picture doesn't prove that it can be done on willpower and drive alone I don't know what can.
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Last night I was watching The biggest loser and having a conversation with my wife about our weight loss to date and how she was out of green tea and that I needed to make her more for the am, so I will use her to make a point. She said to me that since she started back on a more strict intake level and started the green tea that she feels more hungry during the day for the past couple of days and then she said "I ate a whole pack of bubble gum today between breakfast and coming home from work" I laughed and told her that it was going into the post for today! I think its the perfect example of empty calories and is probably why a large part of the people that try to lose weight have issues doing so. She also mentioned that she has been eating animal crackers at work, animal crackers? so now we are getting to the root of the problem here, bubble gum and animal crackers does not a good meal plan make, so She has decided to make pre-portioned baggies of popcorn to bring to work so that when that urge to munch comes up she has something to grab instead of bubble gum or animal crackers, this is something that She and I did when we first began our weight loss. That brings me to the next point, the hunger that she and many others that eat like that have as a result, eating animal crackers and bubble gum or things like that pile on the calories and then when dinner time or lunch time comes around calories are limited and tiny portions are eaten because the calories were already wasted on the sugary snacks earlier in the day. The sugary snacks have another side effect, they boost you up higher than you actually are for a short time and then you crash and burn when the sugar rush goes away.
Indeed Jillian is a tad hot, dare I say I have a crush?!
Last night I tried something a little bit different for dinner, I used ground turkey and made sloppy joes with 80 calorie hamburger buns from Stop & Shop, my daughter has been picky with dinners lately and says that she doesn't eat chicken any more (which means chicken and turkey), She is age 3 and is saying things like that! I am doomed when she becomes a teenager! so with a little bit of daddy trickery ground turkey got turned into a meal that she had no clue what it was and she ate her entire sandwich! I learned that this is a good low calorie alternative to Turkey burgers an already low calorie meal, and I have not had sloppy joes in quite some time, each sandwich had about (and I say about because I estimated the calories of the tomato paste) 205 calories, broken down like this. 2 eighty calorie hamburger buns 160 calories, 5.5 oz ground turkey (which included the tomato paste so it was actually less than 5.5oz of meat but I counted it as 5.5 whole oz of turkey) 220 calories, The tomato paste said 30 calories per serving and there were approximately 5 servings in the small can, I guessed one serving in my 5.5 oz of meat so 30 more calories there for a total of about 205 calories per sandwich, now that ain't bad at all! I think this will be added to my meals again and I think it shows that with a little bit of thinking things out people can eat things that may seem bad for them and not have the negative side effect of gaining weight. The fact that we use less also means that there was left over mix and will be lunch fr me today so money will be saved as well and in todays economy thats always a plus.
My intake for Tuesday ended up at 1630 calories and I did get a 25 minute ride on my stationary bike into the day and I think thats a good day where my weight loss goes. I always seem to do good on Tuesdays and I don't know if its because Monday is gone and I am looking at my program closer, or if its because its The biggest loser night but I always wake up Wednesday morning feeling good about the menu and movement that was done. Maybe its the way Jillian screams at the people on that show to get them moving that gets me, I do know that when I start going to a Gym to do weight training (when I am closer to 300 pounds) if I decide to try out a trainer or something I hope that I find someone like Jillian from TBL because I already push myself so whoever does the pushing in my direction HAS to be aggressive, I am too stubborn to quit or not try to prove someone wrong when they say "you can't do that". All in all I feel as if I am on track and doing well with my new healthy ways, My endurance is up to levels that I cannot even remember having and I feel like I have tons of energy most of the time. I hope to start walking again soon but the snow has to stop before I can really do that, yes it is snowing again here in beautiful New England and it is suppose to turn to freezing rain later then into and I quote the man in the plastic box "the ice will be as thick and hard as concrete" so it is my bike until the snow stops.
The end has come to another post and I am that much stronger mentally and stronger physically because of the movement that I put in yesterday. Thank you for reading along and don't forget to get on up and grab that glass of H2O that ya deserve.
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
There are a couple links posted (to other posts that I have done) within this blog it would take me ALL day to copy them all over to spark so if interested go to my blogspot to see the links @ zeusmeatball.blogspot.com/
Since starting this blog I have made lots of "blog friends" and sometimes within the comments there are a few questions and in the emails I get lots of questions and with the emails I try and respond to every single one of them but the comments sometimes slip trough the cracks so I thought it would be fun to answer a few of the comment questions and some of the more common questions that I get asked, so here goes.
1.) Stages of change asked,
"I'm interested in why you started the green tea thing, and admitting my naivety about the topic, what is the benefit of it, why do it, etc?"
When I started this losing weight gig I was literally scouring the net and some health books that I have for information on common sense weight loss and I came across a page where a study was done on some men in Japan, some who drank 32 oz of green tea per day and some who did not and the study showed that the men who drank the green tea extract lost more weight (5.3 pounds vs. 2.9 pounds) and experienced a significantly greater decrease in BMI, waist size, and total body fat in a 3 month period, since I already loved green tea it became part of my routine. Then there is this "green tea is particularly rich in a type of polyphenols called catechins. These substances have also been shown to have anti-inflammatory and anticancer properties, but recent research in animals show that catechins may also affect body fat accumulation and cholesterol levels" quoted from the article. more answers and reasons are in This post that I wrote a while back.
2.) Linda asked
"What is your special concoction with the green tea?"
I brew my own green tea as most who read this blog know and my "special concoction" isn't really special at all, I take an empty gallon bottle from an Arizona green tea and I fill it with cold water, I then place 2 Arizona green tea bags into the bottle with 1 generic bag of green tea that was bought from a Chinese market along with 2 black tea bags, so 5 tea bags in one gallon of water. I do this before I go to bed and its done when I wake up, I make 2 gallons at a time so there is usually a couple of gallons of tea sitting on my kitchen table. I also drink whats called gunpowder tea when I want hot green tea, cold tea is sweetened with splenda and a squirt or squeeze of some lime juice in and the hot tea is either drank plain or with very little splenda.
3.) This is a question that I get in many of the emails that I get. "Do you celebrate mini goals or give yourself rewards? and how?"
Easy answer to that one, No I do not. when I started the blog I said when I get to goal that I will buy myself a motorcycle (that is still the plan) but I have honestly not really given myself a reward for getting healthy, the reward is living life to the fullest.
4.) Mizfit asked
"did you NOT wanna dance around the restaurant and sing IM IN A BOOOOTH IM IN A BOOOOOOTH. or would that just be me?"
This question was in response to This post, where I sat in a booth for the first time in years and the answer is yes! I know that I was grinning ear to ear and I just kept looking down at the room between my gut and the tables edge, I stayed composed but I may have been singing that in my head.
5.) Thecoolestsarah asked
"How much has your wife lost?"
This post prompted that question, and my wife started on the same date that I did Jan 1st 2008, she started on the 2nd actually when she saw that I was serious this time. She has lost 65 pounds in that time but the last couple months she has just been maintaining the weight loss from 2008 and doing a good job because she has not gone up more than the few pounds that comes off the following week.
6.) Which brings me to a response to the picture in This post from Tomato "Dude, you so rock!!!!! And where would you like us to send marriage proposals?"
Comments like these always make me smile, and do wonders for a guys self image you can send the proposals to.... oh wait, no I am married! and I love her with all of everything that I have in my heart, but seriously send them to... (I'm going to get smacked if I keep that up!)
7.) Another common question from emails, "Do you track fat/carbs/protein etc? how many calories per day do you eat?"
I do not track anything but my calories, I did track those other things for a couple months a while back and there was no benefit other than knowing the figures so I don't track them any more, and I aim for 1700 calories per day, a little less is common and if I go over slightly I don 't worry about it at all but this is a number that will need to be adjusted as weight comes off and when I start lifting weights again will likely need to be heavier on the protein but thats for another day.
8.) Another common question from blog comments as well as Emails is "Where are you from I know that you mention CT but what part?"
The most I will say about my exact location (especially in a public place on the net) is that I am in CT.
9.) Mizfit asked
"would your wife ever consider doing a guest post here?"
Yes, and she has Here, I believe she has done another one but I can't seem to find it right now, in fact we are working on a post together as of last week so look for that one soon too. Many times I get an idea for a post from something wify has said to me the day before so many times there are little pieces of her in my posts.
10.) Fatty Mc fat-fat asked
"what no challenge this week? It is Friday right? :)"
Ahhh yes the challenges that I sometimes do on Fridays, I usually pop a challenge up when either a.) I had an extraordinary week and feel like a freight train, or b.) need a kick in the ass to get moving again, or c.) I am just looking for some punishment for the weekend. I think its a great way to interact with the people that read my blog and see who is paying attention and EVERY time I post a challenge You guys show me that You ARE paying attention and make this large fellow move his arse! so thanks for that!
I hope I have answered some of the questions that some of you may have had, or were curious about and remember I don't mind them! in fact they help me to keep in line lots of the time, and I also wanted to mention that yesterday (Monday) the intake was 1700 calories on the nose and I did not get a ride in on my bike so no movement was had yesterday, I usually take a day or two off per week so I am right on track. Thank you for reading along and don't forget that big glass of H2O that ya just earned by reading my jibber jabber. You know the time, You know the place so see ya tomorrow!
Monday, January 26, 2009
The beginning of a work week and for some its the beginning of a new week of working on healthy living and habits. I have many times posted about this or that and then I have posted my menus along with some recipes and such and I have said from the beginning that this is a way for me to stay accountable because of all of the eyes watching or reading in this case and it has worked wonders for my boyish figure. I was speaking to my cousin last night on the phone whom lives in California and has not seen me in about two years, I emailed her a copy of the photo that I posted in This post zeusmeatball.blogspot.com/2009/01/wo
ah-moment-compare-photo.html and she said to me that she cannot ever remember me that small, now understand this is a girl that I grew up with living next door to me ALL of my life, in fact we lived in the same house together for a couple years when I was about 19 years old and she says that she cannot remember me being this small (Me small?!?) she said that I needed to gain the weight back so that she could recognize me. That is a pretty amazing feeling to have someone not remember me being this size because its been a long time since someone used the word "small" and me in the same sentence.
There are things changing daily for me and how things fit and the ease at which I can do certain tasks since dropping this weight, for instance that 3XLT shirt my wife bought me for Christmas that fits now and I can hold that shirt up and don't get the feeling that I am holding up a sheet but instead a shirt. Then there is my belt, and this belt is something that I keep wearing because it reminds me how far I have come, I wore this belt when I was at my biggest size and I wore it on the second hole, meaning one more hole until it would have been too small for me to wear. This belt now wraps around me and is just about to the belt loop thats in the back side of my jeans, in other words I keep poking holes into it so that it can get tight enough to hold up my pants, have a look for yourself!
Yes I need a shave and please excuse the poor picture I took it with the timer, but man would ya look at that! I use to have to feed the very tip of the belt through the buckle and force it to the second hole all by feel because it was under my gut to get it on! I didn't measure it but that piece is more than a foot long!
Since I have a new camera I thought I would take a few pictures of dinner from last night, I baked a whole chicken after perfectly seasoning it, made a pot of pinto beans with pork neck bone in the crock pot and served it with white rice that had pueblo pepper sauce and sour cream on it. 6oz of the breast meat, 1 cup of the beans and 3/4 cup of white rice and the calories ended up at about 720 total which is a heavy meal as far as calories go but well worth it and it fell within my limit of 1700 total, have a look at some pictures that got my wife smirking at me and my son looking at me with that "why is dad taking pictures of dinner" look.
Pork neck bones $3.35, two pound bag of pinto beans $2.00, five hours in a crock pot on a cold winter day perfection! (I know I know I didn't say priceless)
Here is a look at my perfectly seasoned chicken just before I took it out of the oven, cooked to a perfect 181 degrees! man that camera makes our oven look dirty, trust me its not!
The finished product, white rice with some Pueblo pepper sauce and a tiny bit of light sour cream, 6oz of breast meat and some chopped onions on top of the pintos, it was much better than the photo lets on! and I just might be addicted to the beans.
I had a total of 1690 calories for Sunday so right on where it should be and I did get a 25 minute ride in on my stationary bike. I feel good and got a LONG nights sleep in to start the week off right, I am going to shoot for a loss this week (duh!) even though I seem to have hit a bump with this dehydrated thing or whatever it is. A Cargo shi.. ship has left port this morning and I am feeling better in that dept, lets see if it stays on schedule for the rest of the week, some more pintos for dinner tonight should help that along. As always as the post comes to an end so does your hydration or lack there of, hop on up and grab yourself a big ol glass of H2O, you deserve it. Thanks for following along and thanks for the support.
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