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MNCYCLIST's Recent Blog Entries

Eating on the Road

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

I'm at a camping site this week trying to finish up a book I've been working on for the last few years: it was supposed to be to the publisher last summer but the process has been harder than expected!

Anyhow, it's been so joy-producing for me to see that the new habits I've built over the last 6 or 7 months have led me to eat well while I've been here. I simply brought the good stuff with me and though I've enjoyed a treat or two along the way I've stayed true to my pursuit of health.

Thanks so much, Lord, for your grace in my life, and thanks, SP family, for helping me so much over the last several months.

  


Lost Another Pound

Monday, August 10, 2009

Well I continued the slow creep downward this morning--I finally went below 214 to 213! Small progress I know but progress nonetheless. My focus with SP is health not weight loss but I must admit that I really enjoy dropping pounds!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KAMEL622 8/10/2009 8:20AM

    emoticon Great Job!!!

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SPIRITLIVES 8/10/2009 7:58AM

    emoticon as you said it's always great to see a differences.

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RNEWMANX 8/10/2009 6:31AM

    Great Work

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ANGEL1990GIRL 8/10/2009 6:30AM

  Lol it's good that you just want to live healthy but awesome that you lose a pound. Keep up the good work emoticon

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The Wonder of the Body & the Existence of God

Sunday, August 09, 2009

I visited The Science Museum of Minnesota yesterday with my family and one of the displays they had was about the cardio-pulminary system. It's a bit much to explain it all here but I must say that after reading several summaries of how this system works and engaging with many of the displays which demonstrate this or that aspect of how it works, I cannot help but bow myself before the Almighty and worship Him for what He's done.

It's unthinkable to me that someone would see such a complex and glorious system--only one of several in the body--and come to the conclusion that it just developed by means of random mutation and natural selection. Yeah right! Then why don't much less complex things like multi-story buildings and televisions develop in this way as well? I don't think it's so much an insult as it is stating the obvious when the Bible says, "The fool says in his heart, 'There is no God'" (Ps 14:1, 53:1).

For my part, I look to the design and worship the Designer. I tremble before him, worship him, give my life to seeking and knowing him above all things.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MNCYCLIST 8/13/2009 5:03PM

    Thanks for reminding me that you're my wife, honey!

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KHANDREN 8/13/2009 12:09AM

    I agree wholeheartedly. There is so much we can not explain, yet we are so intricately designed. I was just talking with a friend about the amazing grace in our bodies to know it "needs" to go into starvation mode (even though we all are trying to loose). emoticon
Kim (your wife)

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Anxiety or Prayer?

Saturday, August 08, 2009

My wife was laid off this year and since our insurance comes through her work we are now three weeks away from having no insurance. The reason this is a big deal for us is because my wife has MS and needs meds that cost about $5k per month. COBRA would allow us to continue with our insurance plan but would cost us $1200 per month which we do not have, and even with the government's help we are not able to afford the cost.

So what shall we do? We have two choices: take the weight of this upon our own shoulders and worry or listen to and obey texts like Philippians 4:5-7: "5 Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; 6 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."

We will choose prayer. Even if the Lord allows us to enter into a difficult season of life in which we lose insurance, and perhaps a lot more, we trust that he will work all things together for our good and his glory. The Lord has never promised that we will not suffer but he has promised that he is good and that he's with those who seek him earnestly. So again, we choose prayer over anxiety.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WOLFWYTCH 8/8/2009 10:33AM

    You might want to let the doctor(s) know about the insurance, as they may be able to find a less expensive generic medication that works equally as well for a far less cost. In some cases, they may even be able to give you some of the medication - free samples - that would last a few months.

I believe in the power of prayer and will hold you and your family in my thoughts and prayers.

- emoticon

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Reasons for Plateaus and How to Break Them

Friday, August 07, 2009

After losing 28 pounds in about 7 months, I have hit a genuine weight loss plateau. I have been between 214-16 for several weeks and just can't get the scale to move. I've read several articles SP has about plateaus but this morning I decided to do some additional research and ended up reading about 10 articles this morning. Though some were better than others, they all basically said the same thing. Here's a brief summary of what I found.


CAUSES:
1. The body loves equilibrium (hypoestasis) and once it figures out what you're doing to make it lose weight, it makes adjustments to restore equilibrium again. In other words, it figures how to equalize intake and output so that the body doesn't waste away.

2. As one loses weight, one's caloric needs change and failing to take account of this can cause one to eat more than necessary for weight loss.

3. Many studies show that people tend to underestimate, and sometimes greatly so, their daily caloric intake. Thus it is crucial, as one article put it, to track everything you eat, lick, or look at!

4. The body is amazing in its ability to adjust to stress and therefore when one subjects it to the same exercise program over a period of time the body adapts to that stress and becomes much more efficient at accomplishing it. In other words, over time the body will complete the same activity but burn less calories. (I can't help but pause here and wonder how anyone can fail to believe in a Creator. If I stumbled upon a paint brush in the woods I would never think it just came to be--I would assume that there was a designer and builder. And we live inside of something, the human body, that is vastly more complex and glorious than a paintbrush.)


SOLUTIONS:
1. First of all, we have to know that plateaus are a normal part of the weight loss process. Everyone who attempts to lose weight over time will experience them. In fact, I suspect that they are, for whatever reasons, necessary for the body to maintain health in the midst of what it must consider radical change. In my case, i was in the 230s for several years, and got up to 242, then over the last seven months I've plunged to 214 and my body must be saying: "Hey, I need to hang out here for a bit and then we'll get going again!" Point being, I think that part of the difficulty with plateaus is that we expect to just lose and lose and lose, when that is not reality. Everyone experiences plateaus and so it's best to align our expectations with reality.

2. One thing I read over and again is that as one progresses in their weight loss journey it's easy to stop being so precise with caloric intake. Whereas one used to measure the cups of cereal going into the bowl, he now just "eye-balls" it. This can lead to "calorie creep," that is, the slow but sure increase in actual intake. So the point is that we must continue to be disciplined about tracking our calories. There's simply no way around this. In an over-eating, self-indulgent, underestimating culture we must pay close attention or we will eat more than we think we eat.

3. In order to shock the body a bit and cause it burn maximum calories per minute of exercise, it's important to mix up the program. If your body has become efficient at handling X exercise then add Y. Or vary the intensity of X. Whatever you do, mix it up. Keep the body guessing.

4. Finally, probably the best piece of advice I found this morning is to focus on health not weight loss. It turns out that what we perceive as a weight loss plateau IS NOT always a fat loss plateau. It may be that the body is continuing to become leaner (that is decreasing fat in proportion to muscle) even though the scale is staying static. We know for a fact that eating well and exercising causes the body to lose fat but this is not the same as losing weight. So health, not weight loss, should be our focus. We should take our joy from pursuing a healthy lifestyle and not in the number on the scale.

Obviously, there's always more to be said but this basically summarizes what I've read this morning. Coach Dean has some helpful articles on busting through a plateau which I read a couple of months ago, and you can also do what I did this morning and just google "weight loss plateau."

Hope you found this helpful.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MITECU 8/8/2009 10:09AM

    Thanks for summarizing your research from this morning. I've lost 13 pounds in over 3 months and my greatest worry is to plateau. That's what happened to me during the last time I tried to diet and I just gave up. I need to see it in the terms you put it, as a healthy lifestyle, and not a weight loss program. Even though i only lost 13 pounds, I did lose 2 dress sizes and I'm grateful for that.

BTW, thanks also for your post on my blog. I turn to Scripture whenever I am troubled or worried. The Lord always leads me to a passage that will ease my mind and remind me to rely on Him always. I have marked that passage to refer to when I need it.

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AMAKURU 8/7/2009 1:20PM

    This was very timely. After only 8# I have come to a grinding halt -THAT was frustrating. Put it on the shelf for a few days - and am ready, willing and able to atry some of th techniques you have mentioned.

Thanks for the research you did, and for taking the time to share it....may we both break through that 214 mark soon!

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KAMEL622 8/7/2009 12:50PM

    Another great blog!! Thank you for all of the research that you did too. It really brings it all together and reminded me that plateau's are normal. UGh, sure wish they weren't but now it makes more sense why it happens....ride on....kath

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