Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Day 24

Today is the last day of the 24 Day Challenge so I'm done posting on a daily basis (thank God, it's hard to come up with this stuff every day).

So let's see the results of 24 Day Challenge:

Before                                                               After

I lost 15 pounds, 20 inches and a piano.  With the lighting in these pictures it looks like I lost weight and grew hair on my head (this stuff is amazing).

I've had similar weight loss results when I've dieted in the past, but I don't recall the muscle definition being the same.  I definitely know I didn't feel as energetic on previous attempts.  I feel with this 24 Day challenge behind me I'm well equipped for the next challenge: the challenge of getting back to being fit and enjoying a longer life with my wonderful kids and beautiful wife.

If you would like more info on Advocare's 24 Day Challenge and possibly take the Challenge for yourself please see

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Day 23

When Spanish Conquistador Hernando “Corky” Cortez landed in Mexico in 1519, he gave a startling order: “Burn the ships.” Some historians argue that he just didn’t want to pay the docking fees at the marina, but most have come to the conclusion that he was so committed to his mission that he didn’t want to allow his men (or himself) the option of returning to Spain... the option of failure.

I’ve been taking a “burn-the-ships” approach with many aspects of my current weight loss campaign. I’m getting rid of excuses that get in my path, and I’m chasing away temptations that I know are just too difficult for me to resist.

I used to buy snacks for my kids that, more often than not, I would wind up munching on while watching a ball game on TV.

Burn the chips.

I found myself eating dessert right before bedtime.

Burn the treats.

All too often, I was making poor choices at restaurants.

Burn the menus.

None of us are made of steel. We can’t resist temptation indefinitely. What we can do is take away as many of the hurdles and enticements that get in the way of our weight loss success as we possibly can.

When I decided to stop drinking coffee a couple of weeks ago, there was an almost-full container of Almond Toffee coffee creamer in the office fridge. I left it in there a couple of days, but I know the way my mind works: “Well, that stuff’s just going to go to waste if I don’t drink it. Maybe a cup of coffee a day until it's gone… that’d be all right.”

When you start making deals with yourself over food, it’s time to burn the ships.

Glug, glug, glug… down the drain went the coffee creamer.

Maybe more important than the temptations, you’ve got to take away the excuses that make taking care of yourself less of a priority than taking care of all the other areas of your existence, all the other duties and responsibilities that fill your days. This is your life, and it’s high time that you give yourself the opportunity to be the person you want to be, that you know deep down you’re on the road to becoming.

Burn the ships. Get rid of anything and everything that could possibly cause you to fail. Burn the ships. Take every excuse off the table, and leave every cop-out and justification out back with the trash. Leave yourself no choice but to succeed… and don’t be surprised when that’s just what you do.

Against all odds, Cortez’s men conquered the Aztecs and were victorious where others had been unsuccessful for six centuries.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Day 22

One day, while reaching down to pick up a lucky penny that was resting precariously atop a four-leaf clover, I spotted a shooting star blazing across the sky.

So I made a wish…

I wish that foods that do our bodies little good…fat, sugar and salt…didn’t have such a stranglehold on the wiring inside our heads. It’s never made much sense to me that a brain responsible for our body’s wellbeing would encourage such poor decision-making when it comes to self-preservation.

I wish that my kids (and your kids, I suppose) would embrace the importance of healthy eating and exercise and not make the mistakes that you and I made in our misspent youth.

I wish that I was sitting on a beach in Hannalai Bay in Kauii chowing down on some fresh pineapple and watching surfers falling off their boards.

I wish that those in need of a spark to really and truly get going on this adventure can be hit with a lightening bolt of inspiration and commitment, that they can get that push they need to take that fateful leap.

I wish that this good positive energy I’m feeling most days could be bottled up and saved for those times when I wonder if it’s all worth it, when I feel like letting it all go and just do whatever it is I do to mess myself up. And I wish I could share it, maybe just provide a little sample, to all those who question whether the effort and sacrifice are worth the end result.

I wish that tomatoes at the Farmer’s Market weren’t so damned expensive.

I wish that each of us had the wherewithal to gracefully handle the stresses that we all face… the health concerns and the financial worries, the headaches at the office and heartaches within our homes, the little day-to-day dramas and the big world-shaking catastrophes. And I wish that those times that our faith would be tested would be few and far between...

I wish that, one this day, everyone who reads these words would find a clarity of purpose and a strength of will to accomplish what they’ve set out to do on this journey, and that they succeed beyond the the wildest of their dreams.

“May you have love that never ends,
lots of money and lots of friends.
Health be yours, whatever you do
and may God send many blessings to you.”
–Old Irish blessing

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Day 21

I'm liking this Advocare 24 day challenge. I'm getting results and I'm not being judged for things that I say while I'm taking part in it. Unlike some other "big name" support systems out there, Advocare hasn't sent me home for saying things like:

“Have you ever tried shoving a Snickers bar inside a Twinkee, then microwaving it for 20 seconds?”
“How many points are in puppy meat?”
“Hey, when the meeting starts, let’s all start yelling like it was a town hall meeting.”
“Who’ll give me a dollar to eat a whole can of Cheese Whiz?”
“Do you know if they make sugar-free edible underwear?”
“I don’t get my weigh-in… I dieted all morning.”
“I’ve already lost one-quarter of one percent of my total body weight.”
“We oughta all tailgate in the parking lot before our next weigh-in.”
“I had a big loss this week. Congratulations?!? Congratulations on losing my house? You are one sick human being!”
“Do you have any leftover points you’re not using?”
“Do you know where they keep the emergency chips-n-dip?”

Jim Pogue

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Day 20

My wife didn't think my original day 20 post was a good one (it gets hard to think of this stuff and after 20 days, they can't be all winners).  So here is my second attempt at this.  

I know how this thing goes: good habits become sorta good habits become okay habits become decent habits become kinda poor habits become bad habits. I’ve been down this road often enough to be able to spot the road signs that lead to Obese City, so this week I put my food under a microscope.

What did I learn? I learned that it’s really, really messy to look at food with a microscope. Mashed potatoes get stuck in the little slider doohickey and greek yogurt runs through the cracks…

Once I took a good hard look at what was going down my gullet, I realized that my portions are creeping back up. Not by a lot, but it doesn’t take that much to make a meaningful difference over time.

I’ve caught myself a couple of times snapping up leftover food off my daughter’s dinner plate or grabbing a bite or two (or twelve) while preparing dinner. It’s just so easy to drop the ball, to tell yourself you’re doing all the right things when what you’re doing is some of the right things.

This week I came to the realization that this journey, for me, will require keeping a watchful eye on what I’m doing. It’ll require me pulling back on the reins from time to time, to make a course correction when stray winds blow me off my chosen course. I discovered that I have the ability to manage this process and not give back what I’ve worked so very hard to win for myself.

And lastly, I learned that microscopes are not dishwasher-safe.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Day 19

If Disney made weight loss videos:

• The Not-So-Little Mermaid

• Booty is The Beast

• The Lighter King



• Snow Whitesneakers and the Seven-K Run

• Car(b)s

• Fatladin

• Slimming Booty

• 101 Affirmations



• No-Longer-Jumbo Dumbo

• The Fox and the Chowhound

• The AristoFats

• Oliver Weight Watchers Friends and Company


The Overweight Princess and the Blog

• Slimderella

• Mumulan

• Peter Can (vs Captain Hooked-on-Sweets)


Alice in Onederland

• Fit Lady and the Mini-Tramp

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Day 18

I knew it was time to start the Advocare 24 Day Challenge when:

There was more than a dozen empty wine bottles and/or used-up whipped cream canisters in the weekly recyclable bin.

My sweatpants no longer fit.

When I recently reinstituted “Fry-Daddy Friday” at my house.

I forgot there was such a thing as “calories”.

I went back to using marshmallow crème as a condiment.

Before going for a walk, I had to Google how-to instructions.

When I changed my sheets, I found a half dozen slices of pizza.

We had been using our workout DVDs as coasters.

Buffalo Wild Wings had named a menu item after me.

At least three times a week, I had movie theater popcorn for dinner.