Where Do I Find Quality Of Life?

I am planning my first short trip since lockdown started. Just a quick weekend getaway. When I travel, I want to eat local, good food, but I don’t want to set myself back when it comes to my weight loss goals. As I always want to promote quality of life, what is more important the quality of life on the trip or long term quality of life that comes from losing weight?

The answer for me is simple, I want both. I want to try the best foods on the trip, but also win each day to lose weight overall.

How do I do this? Here are my tips:

1. Low calorie, healthy breakfasts to leave more calories for the rest of the day.

2. Fresh veggies as snacks during the day, to keep my meal portions lower.

3. Lots of walking to burn more calories.

4. Meals where my wife and I make sure to order one healthy meal and one desired meal, then share both dishes.

5. Avoid unhealthy add ons to meals. Like buttered bread, salad with full fat dressing, fried side dishes, and sweets.

Goals Post #4: Reduce Or Eliminate Medicines

Another post of my goals for the second half of year two after I started eating healthy and losing weight. One of the big accomplishments in the first year and a half of this lifestyle change has been my ability to cut my blood pressure medicine dose in half. I actually had a scary moment where I learned the need to do this. I was out painting a fence, and I kept getting overheated and needing to sit down feeling faint. I actually did faint once and collapsed into the yard. It was the Florida heat combined with low blood pressure, because at the time I was taking the dose needed for 500 pound, unhealthy eating version of me.

Well, I want to take another step and see my medicine’s dose reduced again. This will only happen with my doctor’s blessing. I think we are getting to a reasonable time to see it come down. At the end of my journey, I would love to be off the medicine totally, but I honestly don’t know if that will be reasonable.

The second thing I want to eliminate are the Breath Right nasal strips that I wear when I sleep. This helps battle sleep apnea. These slips allow me to get a full night’s sleep. When I was large and not using them, I would find myself falling asleep very easily with no energy. The strips have done wonders, but I look forward to not needing them any more.

My goals for June 9-December 9, 2020:

1. Run a 5k race.

2. Go kayaking.

3. Lose weight to be under 260 pounds.

4. Reduce or eliminate medicines.

My New Fitness Tradition

I think three weeks in a row is enough to call a tradition. Today was the third consecutive Sunday I went out an jogged/walked the 1.25 mile USF Fitness Trail. I’ve enjoyed the opportunity to try something new. Being on a mostly shaded trail is great for not overheating as the days get hotter. The trail has stations along the way where you do different exercises. I only stop at about 5 of them, as many of the stations require me to do things my body simply isn’t ready for.

As I work towards my goal of being in a 5k race this year, I know when I can do two laps on the trail I’m getting close, but for now, just one lap is reasonable for me.

If you live near USF and are curious, check out the trail here: https://www.usf.edu/student-affairs/campus-rec/facilities/fitness-trail.aspx

Goals Post #3: Get My Weight Below 260 Pounds

I was to be at 260 or lower at the two year mark. This would represent being down 240 pounds in 2 years and approaching the point where I could claim I lost half my body weight. The two year mark is December 9, and the idea here is to have a solid 6 months for the second half of the second year.

This goal isn’t aggressive, in that it is just calling for losing about 35 pounds in six months. This strategy is very much on purpose. I want to lose weight in a sustainable manner, where the lifestyle doesn’t change from weight loss mode to maintain my weight mode.

Overall, the goal is to lose 310 pounds. Upfront I was thinking it was a three year process. Now I am thinking it might even be a three and a half year process, but that really doesn’t matter to me, because the tranistion from losing weight to staying at my healthy weight should be minimal change in lifestyle.

My goals for June 9-December 9, 2020:

1. Run a 5k race.

2. Go kayaking.

3. Lose weight to be under 260 pounds

I Made Fat Free Tzatziki Sauce

I love Greek food. Making chicken pita sandwiches is a favorite dish of mine and I can always find tzatziki sauce in the store that is pretty healthy, but I wanted to take it up a notch.

I googled for a recipe and made a couple simple modifications and it worked pretty well. Fat free Greek yogurt (make sure it is plain and not vanilla). I completely left out the olive oil. I also used dry dill from my spice rack instead of the fresh (just because I had it, not for health reasons).

Next time I do it, I’ll make a video to show how easy it was to make. Just wanted to pass this along for now, hopefully to inspire someone to a new healthy idea.

Goals Post #2: Go Kayaking

Photo by Vincent Albos on Pexels.com

This is a continuation of my goals posts for second half of year two on my diet.

I love the idea of getting out on the water. I live a mile or two from the Hillsborough River, and my university has a park on the river with incredibly cheap kayak rentals ($10 for 2 hours, Go Bulls!). To me, this would be the perfect day. Get out on the river, get exercise rowing my way through nature.

I’ve been too big to fit in a kayak for way too long. I’ve always wanted to do this, but never have been able. In my mind, this is something that I am looking forward to, and we are getting close. I think in October or November, when it starts getting cool here would be the perfect time, and I think I will be the right size. I’m already nervous about getting in and out of the kayak, staying out of the water and not getting eaten by gators.

Here is the recap, I’ll keep updating this list in future posts:

My goals for June 9-December 9, 2020:

1. Run a 5k race.

2. Go kayaking.

Goals For The Next 6 Months

I’m coming up on the one and a half year mark on June 9th. I thought it would be fun to share my goals for the next 6 months.

This is the first post highlighting the first goal. They are in random order. I’ll keep a list of them on subsequent posts, so each post I add a new goal will show the ones I preciousness revealed.

I want to run a 5k race. Right now that range is too far for me without stopping for a break and getting off my feet in the middle.

I’ve never run a 5k, so it will be a first for me. I hope it can be a public one, where I can support a good cause, but if our corona quarantine is still going on, then I’ll do it myself.

I want to cross this off my list and I believe I’ll be ready to go before December 9th.

Grab a Rotisserie Chicken When You Go To The Warehouse Club

We ran up to BJ’s tonight. I always try to go before meals so I can take advantage of their $4.99 whole rotisserie chicken, hot and ready to eat. I know Costco and Sam’s have similar deals.

So often eating food you don’t cook leads to unhealthy meals. Buying a cooked chicken gives you a break from cooking, while keeping it healthy.

As a reminder, avoid their mayo based salads that always seem to be sold next to the chickens. Don’t eat the skin and try to pick off any pockets of fat.

Today Is My Thirteenth Wedding Anniversary

Back when we were planning our wedding we knew we wanted to get married on a May Saturday. The church offered us May 5th or 12th. Since I never wanted to chose between an anniversary dinner and celebrating Cinco de Mayo, the twelfth became the day.

Due to all the social distancing, we decided for a low key dinner at home. We don’t eat steak too often, but to make sure tonight’s dinner didn’t hurt my weight loss, we split one steak (and I trimmed the fat off too, after cooking), and each had a lobster tail.

After dinner we took a nice walk around the neighborhood.

Happy anniversary to my wife, Vicky! Looking forward to many healthy years ahead of us.

Idle Time Is Dangerous For Me

I was thinking about this today, when I am idle I’m at the biggest risk to start eating food my body doesn’t need.

This is the biggest challenge in working from home, where the food is close and work isn’t intense enough to keep me away all day.

I alternate between a few strategies, maybe one of these might help you.

1. I keep some sugar free hard candy in the house. This gives me the sensation of eating with very minimal calories.

2. When I am about to go for a snack, I take a 10 minute break from work and run upstairs and do a quick bit of exercise. This makes me feel busy, and I don’t snack when I’m busy.

3. I always try to have food available that has an extremely low calorie count that I allow myself to eat as much of it as I want. The list includes: pickles, sugar free jello, cabbage, cucumbers, and celery.

4. I change my meal times to keep me from snacking. Meaning if it is 10:30 AM and I’m about to grab a snack, I might move lunch up to 11:30 and tell myself to hold out for an hour. An early lunch does to hurt me, but a bad snack might.