Just Plain Sick

I am a firm believer that there is a higher power out there. Maybe more than one. A lot of folks don’t know this about me, but almost ten years ago to the day, I had decided I wanted to be a Lutheran Pastor. I was going to go to parochial school, I started looking and planning on moving to Colorado where the nearest ELCA ministry college was. I was 29 and on the fast track with God; but then I stopped hearing his voice, then I stopped even listening. Then, even I stopped caring. That was ten years ago, and in that time, I have come to grips with that loss of faith and the empirical worship I have now. I follow a greener, more pagan fellowship with my God and Goddess now. And I am happy, if not a little lackadaisical in my worship. Remedy needed.

My point is not about religion and whether my God is better than your God (he kind of is, but later on that – Just kidding, same god, different belief structure). But my point is rather about hearing the voice of God or the Goddess. I believe you can hear or see or feel the power of that which is outside of you if you listen. I believe that every day we are getting messages from powers greater than ourselves, we just are not in tune with them.

So this week, when I have read or heard on NPR, three stories of men no older than 42 at my weight dying of heart failure, it grabbed my attention. By the balls.

Look, I procrastinate, I get caught up, I want and need and desire things right damned now. And sadly, I know that doesn’t work. Sometimes I pontificate just to pontificate because I like to read my own words. This is not one of those times. I have sucked the joy out of being a jolly fat guy, and am tired of people calling me big guy. But, not unlike 2010, I find it hard to just get off the couch.

Granted this week the typhoon that is a bad spring cold has run through our house but-raping everyone as it goes. So, I have a VIABLE reason not to work out the last three days, But what about the week before that, or before that, or….You get the point, right?

Amanda and I started the Henderson Lighten up determined to crush the competition, and the first week we totally did, that was 5 weeks ago, and I am now as heavy if not slightly heavier than when we started (my scale only goes to 335, and my reckoning, that puts me at 337-342).

I am going to start small, I have already realized that if I am going to lose this weight, I have to be realistic. I probably will not be a competitive triathlete by October, But 2013 can always be the year where I turned this shit around for good and got the fam involved and we lived healthier ever after right? Right. So I am going to start my goal off small. Our next weigh in for the Henderson Lighten Up is next Wednesday, I am determined to be able to read my own weight on my own scale, and then we can get a new goal right? Right.

I overheard another message this week, maybe not from a higher power, but maybe from all the Nike YouTube I have been watching, ‘Stop chasing your dream, go make your dream’ and I loved it.  Amanda asked me this week, which was the biggest motivation ever, if I was going to do the C25K training again, as she was thinking of joining me.  WOW!  How much of a message from your higher power is that?  Your spouse wants to run with you?  I always have excuses for not running again, but I am done with them.  After a couple weeks maintenance and to get my endurance where it needs to be, I am going to start this amazing program over again, with my wife!

Anyhoo, I don’t have much more to say than that.  I will post again next week, let you know about the weigh in, running plans and maybe talk about the difference between healthy porn obsession and unhealthy addiction.

Version 2-Paleo, Crossfit and Rain

Generals know that it is very difficult to gain back ground once it is lost.  I completely understand this comment. Welcome to my new and improved blog.  Yes, yes, we have heard it all before, Mike gets a wild hair up his ass, and re-invents something. Let’s all see if this will stick.

Back to my original point and to catch everyone up to speed.  Here is the last two and one-half years, hopefully in order:

Divorce, 375 pounds (or so), near suicidal, Alex moves in with me, become bike commuter, lose 75 pounds, meet best woman in the world, hike, hike some more, lose an additional 25 pounds, begin C25K, lose additional; 25 pounds, move in with best woman in the world, Alex moves back to Salt Lake City, plateau in weight loss at 250, get engaged, discover pregnant, change wedding plans, get married, have baby, realize I had gained back 40 pounds, commit to losing, realize gained back 10 more pounds, get told by two very important people (my tattoo artist/friend and the best woman in the world) in two different ways not to give up, decide to talk less about what I want to do and do more, realize I had hit 316.6 pounds again.  August 1st comes

Phew, all of that in two and one-half to three years.  It has been a whirlwind and I am excited.  August 1st I made the decision that I was still in charge and if I truly wanted to run triathlon, I needed to do something drastic, so Amanda and I decided to eat cleanly, 90% of the time, following the Paleo method of eating AND recommitting to my fitness obsession.  It has been working, since August 1st, I have lost 18 pounds on the dot.  Yes, a lot of that was the dreaded “bloat” weight, but it is staying off and that is cool.  That is where I am today.

I am hoping this blog, instead of being about my bucket list or my want to do, it is going to become about the things I DID and how I got there.  There is a difference.  I WILL talk about goals and planning, but more about the journey now as opposed to the ideas.  I can’t be the worst blogger I know any longer, I am too fucking creative.  I have also been inspired by two other bloggers, RunningForDummies and PetiteAthleat.  These ladies are pretty amazing in their own way, so go check out their blog.  Of course, I can’t be a total ass and shout out for two blogs by women without giving mad props to my own wife’s blog, about her own journey (of a different nature, more ho to housewife than a road to Kona), SouthernFriedinVegas.  She is hilarious, go check her out.  Just click there.

One of the first things I am doing, is ensuring that at my 24 Hour Fitness, I am attending Group X Body Pump classes, so that will start this week, watch for a blog on that.  The other thing, and this is very strange indeed for me, is that I am thinking about trying some Crossfit.  I know, right?  Those that know me, know I have a burning goofy and unfounded vitriol for these folks.  The NASCAR of the fitness world; but, Crossfit of Henderson is opening soon just down the road from me, and I drive by it daily. I am trying to get an opportunity to use it for a few weeks just to see what this Crossfit is, from the inside!  It is hard not to look for Paleo recipes and not be inundated with Crossfitters and their socks and their WOD and their “Hurts so good”.  I called them the NASCAR of fitness, but they are more the Tony Robbins of fitness.  I have dogged on them, maybe out of jealousy (?), so I decided I need to see what is to it.  I weigh 298, so I may die.  Truly, I am a little bit afraid of this workout, but I am told

Don’t worry Mike, Crossfit is Scalable”

 Um, OK?  Is that supposed to make me feel better?  How about you promise me I won’t die or you won’t kill me and we both win.

If you look close, you can see the ACTUAL streaks of rain

It is a rainy day here in Henderson, I am at home sick, so I baked.  My biggest problem with Paleo is baking, especially Pancakes, more on that in another post, so I decided to make some Paleo cookies, using a very basic recipe that I modified.  Below is that recipe.  The cookie was amazing.  Debbie Fields or that Famous Amos guy have no worries, but for the first time, I have found a Paleo baking recipe I can sink my teeth into, literally.  The recipe I modified called for a lot of grapeseed oil, so next time I may cut that back.  These end up being about 90 calories, and make about two and one-half dozen, they are pretty damn good though, even with the higher than I would like calorie (for such a small cookie).  For someone new to Paleo, you have to learn right away that this is not a low-calorie fad, it is a way of living that is rough, but you feel so good.  And things like these cookies make it a touch easier.

PALEO DARK CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER COOKIES

MMMM, can you smell them?

2 ½ C Almond Flour (meal)
½ t Baking Powder
½ t Sea Salt
1 Cup Dark Chocolate (or carob) chips
3T Powdered Peanut Butter (there will be a whole blog post about this; I use “Just Great Stuff” Brand)
1T Vanilla
½ C GrapeSeed Oil
½ C Agave Maple Syrup

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and line a cookie sheet with wax paper or parchment.  Mix the dry ingredients in a big bowl, the wet ingredients in a smaller bowl.  Just use a fork, no need for the blender on this, Almond Meal doesn’t bunch up like flour.  Combine the wet into the dry.  And reach into the bowl with your clean hands and grab about 2T worth of dough, it will be a touch oily and seem wet, but its cool, you are looking for a wad of dough about the size just smaller than a ping pong ball.  Drop it onto the cookie sheet and either flatten a little or not (they don’t seem to fall like a traditional cookie while cooking, so smash them if you like thin and crispy).  Pop them into the oven for no more than 7-8 minutes tops. Set out to cool and then eat, enjoy.  The kids will love these too. Have a couple with a banana and you have a great power snack for a rainy day.

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