Thursday, June 18, 2015

The Bellybutton Challenge: WTF

As I was immersing myself in the going-ons of stories under the Google Health news tab, I stumbled upon the most recent internet "phenomenon" if you will called the Bellybutton Challenge.  Apparently it started in China last week and spread like an Asian wild fire across social media, along with the hashtag #bellybuttonchallenge.

Did you know about this?  I didn't know about this.

And I am very hip and current.

Except I will not embrace the return of the high-waisted shorts and slacks.  I just won't do it.

I mean...just because Kim Kardashian WEST is doing it is reason enough...let alone the ass it creates.

Sigh.  But back to business.

So the belly button challenge looks like this:
And according to a study from the US...which apparently cannot be located, and indicator of health for women is whether or not you can wrap your arm around your back, come around your waist, and touch your bellybutton.  I will wait.  Go ahead.  You know you want to try.  I will try it with you.



GOOD GOD IN SWEET HEAVEN!  That was worse than I thought!  I can barely grab my side meat.  

Well shit.

I'm fat.

Be careful though.  Beijing Morning Post reported that a 24-year-old woman in Chongqing dislocated her shoulder from repeated attempts to reach her belly button.  

That's dedication.

I joke of course.  I mean, not about the fact that someone apparently really dislocated her shoulder trying to touch her damn belly button, but I joke about the overall stupidness of this.  But if you stop joking, it's actually kinda sad.

I have this vivid memory from college.  I was sitting in front of my entertainment stand watching a show about anorexia.  And I was journaling at the time (maybe that's why it's so vivid, I actually have the journal entry), and a girl was literally starving herself to death.  And I was jealous of her willpower.  And I thought to myself, "if I could be anorexic, at least I would die skinny."  AND IT ACTUALLY SEEMED LIKE OKAY LOGIC!  

We spend so much time comparing our bodies to the bodies of celebrities, neighbors, friends, enemies.  We spend so much time looking at the little "flaws" that we hate and spend so little time looking at the parts of us that are amazing.  We spend so much time on this quest to find the perfect diet or the perfect surgery or the perfect pill or powder that will finally...FINALLY...make us thin...that we cheat ourselves from enjoying the things are bodies WILL do for us.  

What if we just stopped hating our bodies.  

What if we just decided to love ourselves?  

Now I am not talking crazy talk here and saying that we shouldn't be doing things that actually MAKE us feel better.  

For example.  I can love my body but also love the fact that for nearly $12,000 I can have my boobs returned to their normal starting position.  

I can love my delts and traps yet work to love them EVEN MORE.

I can love myself but choose to have a surgery that may possibly grant me the push I needed to become HEALTHIER.

It's really hard to do this.  It's hard to focus on the positive and not ruminate in the negative.

This is what went down yesterday when I went into the restroom at work.  I would say that this conversation just happened inside my head, but I was actually talking out loud to myself.

Looking at my reflection in the mirror from the front: "Damn it.  I am so fucking sexy".  And I turn around and look over my shoulder (I like to check out the caboose on the regular, but yesterday I was wearing light grey thin slacks and I KNOW I shouldn't look at my ass in light colored thin material) and I see my cellulite and I say "Ugh.  Fucking Cellulite".

I went from feeling so sexy to feeling disgusted.

I thought "Everyone is probably looking at my cellulite".

But just as quickly I decided "I'm going to pretend it's not there"...

I mean...what can you do about it?  Wear black slacks of course, but I mean right then and there in that moment I was stuck with what I was working with.

And I decided that even if someone WAS thinking I had a lot of cellulite in my ass, I wanted their next thought to be..."but she sure is rocking it".


There are other examples of course.  When I am running I try to be thankful for a body, although slow and sometimes achy,  at least allows me to get out and propel myself in a forward motion.  

I might be a size 12 at the moment, but that's a long ways from the size 26/28 that I started at.

I might have stocky legs, but they are strong.

And that's how it goes.

We get to choose how we feel and how we frame our thoughts.

Simple right?

Happy Thursday.

If you dislocated your shoulder while reading this post, I do not take responsibility! 

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Back Day: Gains Going Up

It's not secret that my favorite day when it comes to working out is leg day (ie. booty day).  My second favorite day is shoulders.  Did you know building your shoulders can make you look like you have a smaller waist?  My LEAST favorite day is Chest day (that's Heather's favorite and about the only day she can lift considerably more weight than me), so that leaves Back Day coming in third.

I do likes me some back day...for several reasons.

  1. Heather likes a sexy back, thus I must try and have a sexy back.
  2. I too like a sexy back and it's often the first thing I look at when I see a woman in a swimsuit or wedding dress.
  3. Having a well developed back lends itself to good posture...and good posture is super sexy, makes you look taller, and also makes you look more confident.
  4. Our back muscles, lower and upper, give us so much strength and support.
Let's just take a gander at this picture.

That's Abby Wambach. She is one of my secondary loves and she also happens to play for the US Women's Soccer Team.  Soccer is rather boring.  She makes it worth watching.  I did get in trouble once for having a picture of her on my phone.  In my defense, it was on ESPN and it IS artistic...AND motivating (although I will not elaborate on how it motivates me).  In Heather's defense, she Abby was completely nude. it is.

But IN MY DEFENSE AGAIN...Heather has a crush on Milla Jovovich.

And once when I just happened to see her google search history I noticed she had googled some youtube video of Milla singing or something...and when I asked her what EXACTLY she was doing with said youtube video...she just giggled and snatched her phone from me.

So there.

We are even.

Lord.  I have got off track.

So, back to back workouts.

HA. That was a pun.  BACK to...never mind.

So this was my workout today.  I don't know if anyone cares but I am always interested in new ideas and new here you go.

First, let us look at the primary players of our back.

When I workout by myself, or even when I train or others join me, I usually do 2 "moves", for 5 sets.  Each set contains 6-8 reps. So you do "Move A" 6-8 times then "Move B" 6-8 times, and you repeat for 5 sets.

For example.  Today I started with single arm bent over fly (8 rows on each arm) and then went to single arm upright row (each arm, six upright rows).  I used a 30 pound dumbbell the entire time.
 Here she is using the cable machine, which I do as well sometimes.  Today though, I used a dumbbell.  The advantage of doing single arm anythings is that you engage your core more.  Another advantage for me is that since I lift so heavy, doing a single arm bent over fly lets me support my lower back with the arm propped on my knee.

Next was triceps push-ups and good mornings.  Triceps push-ups are different than your regular push-up because you keep your arms tucked in.  This is a plus for me because regular push-ups hurt one of my elbows.  It also targets your triceps more (hence...the name TRICEPS pushup). I alternated those 8 push-ups with good mornings.  I used a 40 pound barbell. Good mornings work your lower back and your hammies.

If you can't do "real" push-ups, you can go to your knees.  If that is still too hard, you can push up off a chair, a bench, or even the wall.

Next up. Single arm triceps kickbacks and a series of side planks. I hold the side plan exercises for 30 seconds each on each side. I use a 12 pound for kickbacks.  You keep your elbow high and really only move your arm from the elbow down.

Normal side plank.  Your leg stacked on your knee makes it harder.  You can always drop that top foot and prop yourself with it either behind or in front of your straight leg.

 Side plank with dip.  Dip your hip to the ground and back up again.
Side plank with lateral raise or lateral drop.  I take that weight and extend my arm down over my head and back up again.

After all of those, we have bent over row and farmer carry. For bent over row I use 25 pound dumbbells.
 And for farmer carry I use 2 45 pound plates.  Farmer carry is just walking a certain distance while holding weights by your side (like a farmer carrying jugs of...milk? IDK).  I walk the length of the machines at Planet Fitness.  It probably takes me 30 seconds to do that.
I also did shrugs.  Shrugs are just what they sound like.  You hold weights and shrug your shoulders up and down.  I alternated this with bent over barbell row.
And that was my morning!  It took me about 45 minutes. I don't spend much time resting between sets because I want to keep my heart rate up and my time is limited because I have to get to work! 

 Happy Tuesday Dudes!

Monday, June 15, 2015

Healthy Crustless Quiche: Num Num

So, I was chatting with my sister from another mister, Rachie Poo, about what we were eating for dinner tonight.  Recapping foods eaten and foods to be eaten is preeeetttty much part of our daily texting routine.  Sometimes we throw in poop updates and sex stories...but much of the time we discuss food.  OKAY, so we also talk about working out and people who make poor selections from their wardrobes, but you get my point.  
And this made me think that perhaps I should share (or possibly reshare) this quiche recipe.  It DOES require a food processor, but other than that, it's pretty simple and you can make it fit your tastes.  I will tell you, when she says don't use more than 2 cups of fillings, you should listen to her.  Sometimes I go cray cray with the veggies and the quiche won't set up as firm.  I usually cook this on a Monday for a meatless Monday kind of dish.  The usual cast of ingredients for my 2 cups of fillings include: onion, bell peppers, sauteed spinach, garlic, and brocolli.  And I like to add sliced roma tomatoes on top.
We eat ours with a side of black beans and some salsa.
It reheats really nicely and can also be eaten cold. For the original recipe and for pictures, click here.
Healthy Crustless Quiche Base Recipe
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 cup – 2 cups filling of choice (sauteed veggies/meat)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup greek yogurt (or sour cream)
  • 1 cup 1% cottage cheese
  • ¼ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Additional spices/herbs or choice, optional
  • 2 cups grated cheese of choice
  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Spray an 8 by 8-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
  2. Allow fillings to cool once cooked.
  3. Combine the eggs, greek yogurt, cottage cheese, flour, salt, and pepper, in a medium bowl. Stir together, or blend in food processor until the mixture is smooth, about 1 minute. Pour the mixture into a bowl with the filling ingredients. Add ½ the cheese and mix. Pour the mixture into the baking dish and smooth out the top. Top with remaining cheese.
  4. Bake until set, about 45 minutes. Remove the baking dish from the oven. It will be puffed up, but will fall slightly as it cools. Allow it to cool, then, refrigerate. Cut it into squares and serve.

Burnt Up and Burnt Out

Man oh man. What a weekend.  It went by way to fast and I would have LOVED to sleep in this morning and continue sleeping until tomorrow....or at least lunchtime.  But alas, one must rise and shine and conquer the world.  

Here in sunny and humid Pensacola, FL, even when you get up to run at 5:00am, it' still like running circles in Hades.  It's stifiling.  Me and the pups wogged a slow 3.45 miles and I was tempted to take a picture of how sweaty and beatdown I looked...but I was too sweaty and beatdown to pull my self together for a proper selfie. When Heather finished her 5 miles she said..."Were we running in June last year, because I don't remember it being this hot."  Of course we were (I confirmed with my NikeApp), but my Timehop must have felt the need to confirm as well because this was a year ago:
In other news, I am still loving the Fitbits we bought for Valentines Day.  My goal is 10,000 steps a day and if I don't run in the morning, it takes real effort to get those 10K steps. Another feature of the Fitbit HR is that you can look at your heart rate zone for any given workout.  Take a look at my run from this morning.  I was in the peak zone for 29 minutes.  That's not good.  That means I was actually NOT in my prime calorie burning zone.  That's how hard the run was this morning.  I don't usually touch the peak zone.  

 Another wonderful feature of the Fitbit is the challenge feature.  Last week we did a "workweek hustle" challenge.  The goal is to get the most number of steps from Monday-Friday at midnight. Some people are crazy.  Like Hosea (a coworker), his wife Trinette, and Leigh (my coworker).  They cray cray.  Like...if at the end of the night someone is ahead of them...they get out of bed and get more steps.  I'm not that motivated! LOL.  But it's fun to compete and see each other's steps.

Heather did some dog/house sitting Saturday until Sunday, but after she finished we met and went to the beach for some afternoon sun.  We piled up at Margaritaville...they have hammocks and misters. I had 4 beers, which exceeded my 3 drink limit...but we can't ALWAYS be perfect now...and I switched to water right after that.  My fiance however, did NOT switch to water and would end up later regretting that choice... 

But before the sickness came...we snapped a few pics.

 Pensacola has some of the whitest beaches.

 I love hammocks.

This was riiiiiggght before I had to take Heather to the truck to lay down.  Bless her heart.  She did get a little of that water down...before it came back up.

And so, Monday finds us again!  Keep on keepin on friends!

Monday, June 8, 2015

The Last Week: In Pictures (with some words)

Last Tuesday me and my little bff lady went to the movies together.  It's Stimulus Tuesday at our Theatres, which means that popcorn, soda, and all candy is just $2.  And as I am doing the 80/20 rule, I allotted this little splurge to the 20 portion of the program.  I had a little bit of popcorn, a little soda, and a little candy. And it was wonderful.  We saw Aloha.  I didn't really know much about it except it was a #1. A chick flick and #2. Starred Bradley Cooper.  And if you need to know more, please just refer to #2 again and again.  Well after the movies we hopped in the photobooth. Evidence below.
This is from our Thursday run.  We run at 5:30 am.  And seriously, it's disgustingly hot and humid.  Evidence below.

 Friday after I got home from work and was sitting down for 1 of my 6 beers allotted for the weekend, Cotton decided to show me her new trick: blatant disregard for manners.  Sigh.  I love her though.
 Sunday we went to the beach.  Hot as Satan's fanny pack and the water is almost too warm to be called refreshing.  You can see my tummy stretchies here.  I've come to terms with them.  I remember one of our first dates was at the beach and I was worried what Heather would think of my body since hers is pretty amazing.  Well we were laying there on the towel and she sat up and started touching my stretch marks....and then she whispered "these are so cool"...

I knew it was love.
 And lastly...a little lady smooch.

Some Things I Put in My Mouth

When I am on a diet changing the way I eat, I actually, temporarily, become more obsessed with food.  Like, I am on a mission to find rare and exotic things that fall into the "clean" category and will fill me up whilst keeping me moving in the right direction.  So I though I would share some of my food things with you. The first is a little granola cereal I found at Target.  It's pretty good.  I don't really look at calories first thing anymore when I am looking at food.  I look at protein and I look at fiber.  With my band, cereal is sometimes hard to eat because I don't like my cereal soggy and I can't rush it so it usually gets soggy by the time I can eat it...

SOoooo...I just do a little bowl with a little milk and fresh fruit.  You can eat this dry though.  Or on yogurt.  But I don't really care for with milk it is!

 Next up is an item that when it was first gifted to me by my friend Nicole...well it just sat in my pantry for a month of so.  I didn't even want to try it.  I don't really like almonds, walnuts, pecans...then I was REALLY hungry one day and probably had nothing else unhealthy delicious to eat in the house so I tried this.  Again, you could put it on something, and it's kinda sticky...but I just eat a little bit plain and it's SO good.  It's sweet yet filling and has 5 grams of protein and 7 grams of fiber in just 1 ounce!


This I purchase at Fresh Market.
 Next up are two weird-ee items I bought at our local health store co-op.  The Chia Bar is interesting in the sense it's just pretty much chia seeds and pressed fruit.  But I am eating it now and helped curb my craving for a reese's peanut butter egg and a Pepsi.  And that's saying a lot.
 Now this little guy below is weird.  It's just one apple and one mango.  That's it.  Hence the name.  That's it.  It's odd and I don't know if I would say go buy yourself a BOX, but it might be something to try.
And finally, this last item I recommend with caution.  Because although it is could EASILY ingest the entire bag in one sitting. It's Boom Chicka Pop popcorn.  See that white one there?  That's my jam.  It's the white cheddar and I love it.  Heather digs the yeller one.  I've actually never seen the caramel and cheddar one but doesn't that sound interesting.  This comes in handy at home when I am in between meals and just need SOMETHING.  So a cup or so of this hits the spot.

Well there you go dudes!  Let me know if you try any of these.

My Band Visit: It's Been A Minute

So last week I finally had my fill appointment with my "new doctor".  Remember after Dr. Friedman, my own personal McSteamy retired due to his cancer (update on that:  he is now large and in charge running things at the bariatric clinic at University of Florida), I decided I didn't want a new doctor (read that in a pouty 3 year old voice for full effect), and thus...I haven't been for a fill or to meet the new doctor since March of 2013.

That's a mad minute dudes.

So about two months ago I scheduled my appointment and met with Dr. Gatmaitan.  I was slightly upset about the fact that he wouldn't do a fill without an upper GI, but I was really going for an upper GI anyways (I've never had one and juuuuuust wanted to make sure the band was happy and healthy), so I left a little content that I just knew I wouldn't like him as much as Dr. Friedman.

Afterall, what were the chances of me finding love with TWO bariatric doctors?

I digress.

So about 6 weeks ago I have my first upper GI and hear nothing.  So I am thinking no news is good news...

But still...

I wait.

So my appointment was last week and before I can make it to my consult room, Dr. G is in the hallway and wants to know if I would like to see my slides/xrays.  So he proceeds to take the time to show me each shot and explain what I am looking at and even brings the fake stomach demo toy out and compares it to the picture to make sure I know what's going on.

I thought that was nice.

And the verdict is:

No slipping.  No erosion.  No prolapsed esophagus.

Everything is chill.

He also said that you can tell I have pretty good restriction, and he was hesitant to give me anything at all.

I said, "I can eat an entire sub".

He said, "An entire sub?'

I said, "yes".

He said, "Okay".

So he gave me .2 ccs and everything seems to be going smoothly.

I can't notice a huge difference, maybe just a little.  But that's okay.  Most of the things I need to focus on eating wise, well...the band doesn't stop cheetos mmmkay.

And I have been doing well along that little by little.

Just wanted to give ya'll an actual band update for once.


Happy Monday!

Monday, June 1, 2015

Pooping: My Gift, My Curse

A couple of fecal matters sprouted up this weekend (and today) that I wanted to share with you.  Because after all, if we can't talk poop shop, what do we have left of this relationship?

Let us start with a beautiful Sunday morning tail of animal turds. Please use this picture as reference.  Cotton is our blond "puppy" (technically they are almost 1.5 years old but will probably be puppies for the rest of their lives).  Bear is the black puppy, and sometime confuses himself with kitty cat or a parrot, as he likes to perch on or near our shoulders when we are on the couch.

Well we were sitting on our back patio yesterday enjoying the 104 percent humidity of Florida at 830 a.m. when we noticed Cotton digging over by the fence.  These sweet little puppies are notorious diggers, which annoys Heather who is in charge of the maintenance of our yard, so Heather hollered out for Cotton to stop.  Cotton did pause while I explained to Heather that clearly she was hunting for a varmint.  Cotton then resumed digging and proceeded to get the varmint in her mouth and run over near us.

Then I was a varmint...

It was a turd.  Possibly a puppy turd.  Possibly a kitty turd.  I don't know because when Heather poop scoops the backyard, she fills the holes the puppies have dug with poop to prevent them from digging there again.

But instead of deterring Cotton from digging, it obviously became a dirt encapsulated turd smorgasbord.

So now I am hollering at her to "Drop that turd" and she is running around, doodie in her mouth.  She then heads for the doggie door and I am yelling "Don't you go in that house with a turd"....

And sure as shit (see what I did there?) she ran into the house, me chasing her...

She finally dropped that turd on the carpet.


So that brings us to this morning.  It was a Monday run day and the pups and I set out to do our 3 miles wog (a walk jog really).  I had pooped beforehand and thought at the time I may have left a little for later, but wasn't too concerned.  Well about 1 mile into the run...I became concerned.  There was a poop needing to happen.  So I told Heather that I was going to turn back at the 1.5 mile mark and head home.  Well at the 1.6 mile mark I had to walk so I could do the old glute squeeze, praying that I would not poop in my spandex shorts.  I was talking out loud saying "You can make it.  You can make it"....and then I was making sounds of pain.  Like oooooh.  eeeehhhhh.  And Cotton was concerned and kept looking back at me to make sure I was okay.   So then I had to verbally reassure her, "Mama's okay.  Mama's okay...."

And I wanted to run so I could get home quicker, but running just jostled the turtle head out a little more, so I had to speed walk.  And I don't really know how to speed walk.

But I made it.  We made it.

And it was not just the "little for later" I thought I had left behind.

I walked out of that bathroom a new woman.

The pups and I then went back out and finished our three miles.

Man.  The freedom I felt knowing that I was poop free at that point.

In other non-related bowel news, I am towing the line with our "diet".  Heather completely gave up after 24 hours, but I am still eating clean, had my juice for breakfast, and stuck to the 6 drinks max for the weekend (had 3 on Saturday, 3 on Sunday).  We did eat out yesterday and I had half a meatloaf sammie and a mixed drink, but that's in line with the 80/20 rule.

Happy Monday friends!  Happy Monday.