Getting Too Cold To Go Jogging

Weighed in this morning at 151 pounds, down two pounds from yesterday.

Yesterday I ate a total of 667 calories...

Morning: 1 cup of kefir (160 calories)
Morning: 1 whole wheat bagel (110 calories)
Afternoon: 3oz of beef jerky (210 calories)
Afternoon: 1 half-liter bottle of water (0 calories)
Afternoon Snack: 1 container 170g of blackberries (73 calories)
Afternoon Snack: 1 can of V8 Juice (70 calories)
Evening: 2 medium sized tomatoes (44 calories)

I did the full set of exercises, jogging 1 mile, sit-ups, push-ups, crunches, and light weightlifting for both legs and arms.

So wow, I'm only 1 pound away from my goal of 150. But with today being the weekend, I'll likely gain weight today and tomorrow. Meaning, I'll have to wait next week for a shot at 150.

Today I'm planning to spend the day motorcycle riding with some friends. I'm already thinking about my meals. I'm actually sitting here in the morning eating a bagel and drinking a V8 Juice. I'll look for a salad at lunch time, and probably finish the day with a beer or two.

It's getting rather cold to go jogging. I used to go in the morning, but my hands keep freezing up. Even the evenings get cold here in Southern California. So I've been going in the afternoon. But on these days I go motorcycle riding, I spend my afternoons on the road. So I end up not jogging as much as I used to. But I think that's ok, it gives my body some more time to recouperate.

Meal Planning and Weight Loss

Weighed in this morning at 153 pounds, no change from yesterday.

Yesterday, just as I said I would, went out motorcycle riding with a buddy of mine. There's a funny story to it which you can read about here.

We ended up at a sushi bar for lunch, and we split a few rolls, plus I had a bowl of udon because it was rather cold that day and I needed to warm up. I only drank iced teas. When I got back home, I had a Bud Light Lime beer. Earlier that morning, before I left, I had a serving of kefir and a bagel. The kefir, bagel, and Bud Light Lime was a combined 340 calories. I have no idea how many calories the japanese food was.

And I did not exercise yesterday.

So, I managed to control the intake in such a way that I could have a good time hanging out with a friend of mine, and not gain any weight out of it.

But crucial to all this weight management is planning. That is, I knew I would be spending the afternoon with a friend, and eating out somewhere, so I knew not to eat too much for breakfast, and then I knew I had to watch what I eat while I was out, so that I could stay on track.

And I love spontaniety, to me being spontaneous means being free. But since we don't live out in the wild where food is hard to come by, and you have to do a lot of work to get it, it's necessary to keep track of what you've eaten throughout the day so that you know if you're going overboard on calories, or not getting enough nutrients.

What has really helped me plan my intake is looking up various foods on the USDA's Nutrient Database. Then I created a spreadsheet...
  1. I identified several fruits, vegetables, breads, and dairy items on a spreadsheet, and then noted their calories, fat, carbs, fiber, protein, sodium, potassium, and magnesium.

  2. I set a calorie intake goal of between 600-800 calories per day.

  3. Each day, I note how many calories, fat, carbs, fiber, protein, sodum, potassium, and magnesium I've consumed thus far, and keeping adding to it throughout the day.

  4. By evening time, I'm supposed to finish somewhere between 600-800 calories, but also making sure my fiber is above 25gm, the protein is above 50gm, potassium is around 4,000mg, and the magnesium is around 400mg.

This spreadsheet really helps me stick to my weight loss goals. If there's a day where I go out to eat and end up consuming a lot of calories, I then try to set a lower calorie goal for the following day, and use the spreadsheet to figure out which foods I can eat to help me get there.

It's so true what they say about dieting and weight loss, it's really about planning and eating the right foods, not about eating less. Ultimately it's about creating new habits, and adopting a healthy lifestyle.

Losing Weight Starts in Your Mind

Weighed in this morning at 153 pounds, up one pound from yesterday.

Yesterday I broke out my diet by getting together with some friends in the evening at the local tavern. I had two large bottles of beer (22oz each), both of which were porters (dark beer). I figured about 800 calories total right there.

I also had a large grilled chicken salad with some kind of house dressing already mixed in, along with raisins and walnuts. I'm guessing it was about 1,000 calories.

Though earlier in the day I started off as usual with my serving of kefir and a whole wheat bagel, and for lunch a small carton of blackberries. That worked out to 343 calories.

So in total it was a big day, at 2,143 calories.

I did exercise however, doing the full set of jogging, sit-ups, push-ups, crunches, and weight lifting. I knew I was going out that evening, so I knew I had to do as much exercise I could to mitigate the impact.

Today won't be much different. I'm heading out in the morning to meet up with a buddy to do some motorcycle riding. I don't know where we'll end up, but I'm vowing to stay away from beer, and stick to another salad.

I know what you might be thinking, it's that how can I do these things if I'm trying to lose weight? What I'm really trying to do is manage my weight loss plan and still try to live a normal life. I want to enjoy life, go out with my wife, my friends, and train myself to eat light, eat healthy, and develop good habits.

Ultimately the real weight loss starts in your mind. You just can't lose weight cold turkey. It takes years of undoing all the bad habits, and formulating good ones. Even now, I still love going out with my wife, or hanging out with my buddies, so much so that I'll sacrifice my diet for it. So, I need to find a way to manage the diet and still do those things.

Western Bagel and Dieting

Weighed in this morning at 152 pounds, down two pounds from yesterday.

I ate a total of 594 calories yesterday, here's the breakdown...

Breakfast: 1 Thomas' whole wheat english muffin (100 calories)
Breakfast: 1 cup of kefir (160)
Lunch: 1 bag of beef jerky (210)
Late Afternoon Snack: 10 celery sticks with hot sauce (10)
Late Afternoon Snack: 1 can of low sodium V8 Juice (70)
Dinner: 2 medium sized tomatoes (44)

I also exercised, doing my usual jog of 1 mile, and some light weight lifting with the legs only.

I can't believe how conscious I've become in what I eat now. I look at the nutrition label on everything, and I'm getting pretty good at knowing what foods offer higher fiber, lower fat, lower calories, etc.

I went grocery shopping yesterday to replenish my supplies. I had hoped to get another package of Thomas' Whole Wheat English Muffins, but they didn't have any in whole wheat. I instead found a package of bagels from a brand called "Western Bagel", and they make a line of Alternative Bagels, and one of them is a whole wheat variety called "Sweet Wheat". They contain about the same weight as an english muffin, and are at 110 calories versus about 100 for the english muffin.

These bagels are smaller than the standard sized bagel, but when eaten with my usual cup of kefir, they seem to provide the same small breakfast as having the english muffin, or that whole wheat tortilla. Both the muffin and bagel each have 8g of fiber. I do have to say that the bagel is better tasting, while the muffin was rather bland. I actually like the whole wheat tortilla better, but at 200 calories, it's was like eating twice the calories for the same sized breakfast.

I also found that Western Bagel has a multi-grain bagel in a normal size called, "Perfect 10". It's only 140 calories, versus bagels of this size from other brands are about 200-300 calories. This one has 19g carbs, and 9g fiber, for a net 10 carbs. And it has 17g of protein, compared to about 10-12g for other brands. So, I'm tempted to order a bag of this online and make them my breakfast for a week and see how things go.

How Many Calories Burned in a Day?

Weighed in this morning at 154 pounds, down two pounds from yesterday.

Here's what I did yesterday to do that...

Breakfast
1. 1 cup of kefir (160 calories)
2. 1 Thomas' whole wheat english muffin, plain (100 calories)

Lunch
1. 10 small celery sticks, 4 inches in length, with hot sauce (10 calories)
2. 1 can of low sodium V8 Juice (70 calories)

Dinner
1. 2 medium sized tomatoes (44 calories)
2. 1 can of low sodium V8 Juice (70 calories)

Total Calories for the day: 454

I should have eaten more protein, but I opted not to because I ate so much meat the day before, I figured I'm still good to go.

Exercises
1. Jogging in the afternoon, 1 mile
2. Light weight lifting in the evening

I figure I'm burning about 2,000 calories a day. The exercises only comprises about 400 calories burned. The rest is burned through the normal activities of the day, walking around the house, going up and down the stairs, typing on my keyboard, etc.

Based on what I've been able to figure out, about 800 calories is burned just by sleeping for about 8 eight hours. The body has to burn calories just to restore energy to the muscles and to repair things.

I also take a hot bath in the early evening, usually after I do my sets of light weight lifting. Soaking in a hot bath makes my heart beat faster, and I think that's burning more calories also.

Starting My Diet Plan Over Again

Weighed in this morning at 156 pounds.

So on Saturday and Sunday, the binging continued. But I was able to mitigate the impact.

Saturday I went motorcycle riding. We stopped at J.J. Purdy Landry's in Fallbrook, CA, an irish pub. I had a salmon salad and Diet Coke. Afterwards, I stopped at a friend's house, and we BBQ'd some rib eye steaks, bell peppers, garlic bread, and drank a few beers. It sounds like a lot of food, but calorie-wise, only the garlic bread was truly sinful, everything else either low-fat or low-carb.

As a result, I actually lost a pound all day Saturday, weighing in Sunday morning at 155 pounds. I can't help but wonder that the magic of motorcycle riding, once again, helped me lose weight.

But Sunday was a different story. I attended a birthday party, and drank about five beers, several tortilla chips, several deviled eggs, three bratwurst, and two burger patties. I also had some potato salad later in the evening. I was stuffed.

But when I weighed in this morning, I only gained a pound from it all, weighing in at 156 pounds. I think what helped is that I took a big dump before I weighed myself.

So this week I'm going to continue with the same dieting plan that I was using under my "power diet challenge", except I won't attempt to do four or five days straight on it. I'm going to break out on Wednesday and enjoy some finer food.

Day 5: Losing 5 Pounds in 5 Days

I weighed in this morning at 156 pounds. Up four pounds from yesterday.

So on the fifth day of my "5 Pounds in 5 Days" power diet challenge, I succumbed.

After four straight days of punishing myself with tiny morsels of food spread out over the whole day, with exercises mixed in, I couldn't take it any longer. I jumped on my motorcycle and headed out to a tavern and had a couple of beers and some boneless buffalo wings, potato skins, and several peanuts. Then I went to a friend's house and had two more beers.

However, I did spend that Friday morning trying to stick to the plan, eating some whole wheat muffins, and doing some sit-ups, crunches, and push-ups.

However, I did weigh in yesterday morning at 152 pounds. So, basically what I did was I lost 4 pounds in 4 days. Had I stuck to the plan all day, I'm sure I would have extended it to 5 pounds in 5 days for this morning's weigh in.

But what this tells me is that it's effectively impossible to lose one pound every single day. That is, when you see advertisements promising that you'll lose 30 pounds in 30 days, it's a gimmick. In truth, it is technically possible to do, but effectively, it's impossible. After so many days of punishing yourself eating just a little bit here and there, four or five times a day, and eating the lowest-fat, lowest-carb foods, your mind cracks.

And I think that's what happened. Having punished myself for four straight days, it caused me to binge on Friday. I gorged on so many beers, buffalo wings, potato skins and peanuts, that I'm now back where I started at the beginning of the challenge, at 156 pounds. Although, much of that weight gain is water from the beer, and I can piss that out and probably get myself down to 153 pounds. Still, it doesn't look good on a scale.

So, it's better to do this kind of "power dieting" for maybe three days straight at the most, and then break out and enjoy something more fulfilling, but not as guilty, maybe a chicken salad, or a trip to the sushi bar.

Day 4: Lose 5 Pounds in 5 Days

Weighed in this morning at 152 pounds, down two pounds from yesterday.

Day #4 is in the books on my "Lose 5 Pounds in 5 Days" power diet challenge.

I didn't do any exercise yesterday, as my body kept telling me it didn't feel like it was up to the task. I felt sluggish all day. Instead, I took a couple hours nap in the afternoon, and then retired in the evening for a 9 hour sleep.

So here's what I ate yesterday...

1. morning: cup of kefir, Mission Carb Balance whole wheat tortilla, Thomas' English Muffin whole wheat
2. afternoon: 1 can of light tuna in water 6oz, 10 small celery sticks with hot sauce
3. late afternoon: 21 strawberries
4. evening: two tomatoes

And here's the nutritional info on that...

Calories: 734 (2,000)
Net Effective Calories: 606
Fat: 10.44g (65g)
Carbs: 100.52g (300g)
Net Effective Carbs: 68.52g
Fiber: 37.2g (25g)
Protein: 64,98g (50g)

So yesterday was my lowest calorie intake at 606 effective calories (after subtracting the fiber from the carbs). And while I slept, my body was restoring energy back to my muscles.

So far, after four days, I've effectively lost four pounds. I just need to lose one more pound to successfully complete five pounds in five days. That might be a tough one for today, because my wife was feeling pretty energetic yesterday and was buying stuff to cook up a chicken dinner for tonight.

On the other hand, that's a good thing for me and this diet challenge, because it represents a typical day in someone's life. That is, I can't always expect to stick to my dieting plans, there's always something that will come up and force me to alter my plans. So, I'm going to try to do all my exercises today, and cut back on some of the other things I've been eating.

Day 3: Losing 5 Pounds in 5 Days

Weighed in this morning at 154 pounds, no change from yesterday. Well technically, I was 153.5 pounds, but I round everything up.

So it's day #3 on the Power Diet Challenge of losing 5 pounds in 5 days. Here's what I did yesterday...

1. morning: medium sized hot green tea, plain
2. late morning: cup of kefir, one Mission Carb Balance whole wheat tortilla
3. late morning: exercise, jogging 1 mile
4. afternoon: package of blackberries (6oz), bottle of Fruit2O
5. late afternoon: 45 baby carrots
6. early evening: 1 can of light tuna in water (6oz)
7. evening: exercises, light weight lifting
8. late evening: two tomatoes, medium sized

Here's the nutritional breakdown of what I ate...

Calories: 837 (2,000)
Net Effective Calories: 717
Fat: 10.28g (65g)
Carbs: 118.84g (300g)
Net Effective Carbs: 88.84g
Fiber: 49.51g (25g)
Protein: 65.22g (50g)

(xx) = USDA recommended daily intake

Well, I'm kinda disappointed I didn't lose a pound yesterday, but I'm still shooting for losing 5 pounds in 5 days, it just doesn't have to be one pound every day.

Beware of low sodium! Last evening I started feeling lethargic. Looking over my diet this week, I wondered if I was too low on sodium. So, I poured some table salt into my hand and licked it up. I started feeling better within minutes. It seems that being on a diet high in fruits and vegetables can get you low on sodium. That's something I didn't worry about when I was going full steam ahead on beef jerky.

I still drink V8 juice, but I happen to have low sodium V8, which is only 200mg of sodium per can. You need about 2,500mg of sodium per day. I think I've been getting anywhere between 1,000 to 2,000mg per day. But I've been drinking less V8 since I've stepped up on the fresh fruits and vegetables.

Day 2: Losing 5 Pounds in 5 Days

Weighed in this morning at 154 pounds, down another pound from yesterday.

It's Day #2 on the "5 Pounds 5 Days" power diet challenge, and so far so I've lost 2 pounds in 2 days. Not bad.

Here's a breakdown of what I did yesterday...

1. early morning: cup of kefir, and one Mission Carb Balance whole wheat tortilla.
2. morning: tall cup of coffee (plain)
3. afternoon: container of blackberries (170g)
4. afternoon: exercise, jogging one mile
5. mid-afternoon: beef jerky (3oz), tall cup of green iced tea (unsweetened)
6. late afternoon: exercise, light weight lifting
7. early evening: two medium sized tomatoes
8. evening: two medium sized tomatoes, 1 can of V8.

And here's the nutritional breakdown of what I ate...

Calories: 801 (2,000)
Net Effective Calories: 681
Fat: 11.83g (65g)
Carbs: 124.58g (300g)
Net Effective Carbs: (94.58g)
Fiber: 42.01g (25g)
Protein: 58.68g (50g)

(xx) = USDA recommended daily intake)

Net Effective Carbs is calculated by subtracting 30g of carbs from the total carbs. The 30g of carbs comes from the high fiber foods (kefir, whole wheat tortilla, and blackberries), which does not get converted into sugars, and is passed out unconsumed. Net Effective Calories is calculated by subtracting 120 calories (30g carbs x 4 calories per carb) from the total calories.

The beef jerky I ate had a lot of sugar in it, about 30g of carbs total just in that bag. Beef jerky is actually a pretty good diet food, considering it's high in protein. But you have to read the Nutrition Facts label and one that's lowest in carbs. Plain beef jerky has no sugar, and no carbs. It's just that companies tend to throw sugar into it.

So I've discovered that canned light tuna, packed in water is actually better. It has no sugar at all, though a typical can (6oz) actually provides less protein. But overall, when I combine that with the cup of kefir and the whole wheat tortilla, I end up with more than the 50g of the daily recommended intake by the USDA.

Day 1: Losing 5 Pounds in 5 Days

Weighed in this morning at 155 pounds, down one pound from yesterday.

So yesterday was my first day on my "power diet", attempting to lose 5 pounds in 5 days. Here's a breakdown of what I did...

1. breakfast: whole wheat tortilla, cup of kefir
2. exercises: light weight lifting
3. lunch: blackberries (1 container 170g), green iced tea unsweetened
4. exercises: jogging 1 mile
5. afternoon snack: peas in pods, about 30 pods
6. dinner: can of light tuna in water (6oz), 2 medium tomatoes, 30 grapes

Here's the nutritional breakdown of what I ate...

Calories: 830 (2,000)
Net Effective Calories: 710
Fat: 10.13g (65g)
Carbs: 116.26g (300g)
Net Effective Carbs: (86.26g)
Fiber: 39.91g (25g)
Protein: 69.51g (50g)

(xx) = USDA recommended daily intake)

So my total calories was way under the RDI of 2,000, as well as my fat and carb intake. Meanwhile my fiber and protein was over the RDI.

Also, the only "high fiber" foods I had that day was the Mission Carb Balance whole wheat tortilla (21g) and the blackberries (9g), for a total of 30g of fiber. High fiber foods are those with more than 5g of fiber. Because they are high fiber foods, the fiber does not breakdown into sugars, and are passed out. Therefore, I can subtract them from my total carbs, adjusting it down to 86.26g.

When you consider that each carb translates to 4 calories, I can subtract 120 calories from my total, which effectively becomes 710 actual calories absorbed for the whole day.

So, I'm off to a good start!

Trying to Lose 5 Pounds in 5 Days

Weighed in this morning at 156 pounds, which is up 2 pounds from my last blog entry Friday morning.

Like I said in that last blog entry, I had visited a friend of mine Friday night to change a tire on my motorcycle. He has a tire changer. I chugged down about 5 beers, and munched on some grapes, strawberries and tomatoes. And then on the way home, I stopped at an In-n-Out Burger and had a Double-Double with cheese. But earlier that day, my wife and I had lunch at a Sizzlers, and I had a spinach salad, with tomatoes and cucumbers, and some chicken soft tacos.

So all that eating and drinking pushed me up to 158 pounds when I weighed in Saturday morning. And Saturday my wife and I rode the motorcycle to San Diego to Shakespeare's Pub, which has the best fish-n-chips. Huge pieces of fish, and the best french fries, the thick cut kind, soft and oily. But that was all I had to eat.

Sunday morning I weighed in at 157 pounds. The wife and I drove to the San Diego Wild Animal Park. We did a lot of walking around the park, which accounted for some exercise. Afterwards, we ate at a Shogun teppanyaki restaurant, and I splurged on a combo New York Steak and Scallops, which came with fried rice, vegetables, and soup. I added a spicy tuna roll and a bloody mary. But that was all I ate that day.

And so today I'm now at 156 pounds.

Considering all I ate over the weekend, I'm pleased that I was able to only gain two pounds effectively.

So this week I'm planning to go on a power diet. I spent some time Saturday looking up various foods on the USDA Nutrient Database to figure out what fruits, vegetables, and meats have the lowest fat, lowest carbs, and highest fiber. I came up with tomatoes, blackberries, celery, and canned light tuna. I'm still sticking with my kefir and whole wheat tortilla in the morning, along with a couple cans of V8.

But I'm figuring with that diet, I'm looking at about 700-800 total calories each day. And then I'll be exercising.

My goal is to lose five pounds over the next five days, and hopefully weigh in next Saturday morning at 151 pounds.

Wish me luck.

Mission Tortillas Carb Balance - Tons of Fiber

mission tortillas carb balanceWeighed in this morning at 154 pounds, no change from yesterday.

No beef jerky yesterday. I started out as usual with a serving of kefir and a handful of almonds. My internet access at home died, so I went to a Starbucks instead. I had a package of raspberries (about 12oz), and a iced green tea. Later on in the evening I had a four medium sized tomatoes, and six sweet peppers, and a whole wheat tortilla. I also did my full set of exercises, jogging, sit-ups, push-ups, and weight lifts.

That whole wheat tortilla I had was from Mission Foods, which makes a whole wheat version called "Carb Balance". Each tortilla contains 21g of fiber, which equates to 84% of the daily recommended allowance. But each tortilla also contains 200 calories, 45 of which comes from fat. But I'm going to give these things a try and eat one every morning as my breakfast. That combined with the serving of kefir and the handful of almonds, I'll have more than 100% of the RDA for fiber just in that meal.

As far as the taste is concerned, it's not bad at all. It's softer than a typical flour tortilla, even after refrigerated it's still rather soft. I eat it plain without anything on it. After eating all these fresh fruits and vegetables, it's actually a welcome addition to my daily intake.

From what I've been reading, the fiber is supposed to bind up some of the carbs and fat from the other foods I eat, and thereby prevents some of those calories from being absorbed into the body. Hopefully these Mission Tortillas "Carb Balance" will do something for me.

Well today being Friday, I'm supposed to visit a friend and hang out over some beer and munchies. I'm going to bring up some beer, along with some grapes to eat. Last time I went up there to hang out, I ended up eating a plate of nachos with melted Velveeta cheese. Not this time!

Need More Fiber in my Diet

Weighed in this morning at 154 pounds, down one pound from yesterday.

Another beef jerky diet day yesterday, starting out with my serving of kefir and a handful of almonds. Then 3oz of beef jerky for lunch, followed in the evening with 12oz of fresh blackberries, and about 12oz of fresh broccoli and sweet peas. I had a can of V8, a bottle of water, and a bottle of Fruit2O.

I also did all the exercises, went jogging, sit-ups, push-ups, and various weight lifts.

I'm going to try to work more fiber into my diet. Thinking about getting a loaf of whole wheat bread, and just having two slices a day, one in the morning and one for lunch. I'm just going to eat them plain with no spread.

All this sounds pretty drab when you read about my daily dieting. I mean, just eating raw fruits and vegetables, plain bread with nothing on it, kefir, vegetable juice, unsalted almonds, beef jerky. I don't really eat anything prepared, like a casserole, or sandwich.

However, I'm still dieting, still trying to reach my goal. Once I reach that goal, then I'll shift towards eating regular meals, and attempt to maintain my weight instead of lose weight.

Tailbone Hurts When I Sit

Weighed in this morning at 155 pounds, down one from yesterday.

Another beef jerky diet day yesterday, started off with a serving of kefir and a handful of almonds. For lunch I had 3oz of jerky. In the evening I had some sweet peppers, celery sticks, and a flour tortilla (plain). I dipped the peppers and celery into some chile sauce, and then washed it down with a V8. I also had a bottle of water and a bottle of Fruit2O.

I also did the full set of exercises, jogging, weight lifts, push-ups and sit-ups.

I blogged yesterday that it was raining and that I would be stuck indoors all day. However, the rain let up for a moment, and enough sunshine came through to dry up sidewalks, that I went jogging.

That tailbone of mine keeps getting in the way. When I sit, I can feel it, and eventually it bothers me. So, I have to put more weight on one butt cheek or the other, which means I'm not sitting up straight. I have the same problem sitting in the car, or on my motorcycle. I sometimes wonder if my tailbone is longer than normal people.

My wife complains about her tailbone too. She's been slowly losing weight over the past few weeks now.

I get the sense that there's a lot more people losing weight these days than ever before, and perhaps due to the high unemployment rate and bad economy. I personally know some people currently watching their diet, and they just happen to be in a weak financial position. And of course that's just bad for the food industry.

Fruit and Vegetables for Dinner

Weighed in this morning at 156 pounds, down one from yesterday.

I had something more closer to a beef jerky diet than I had in the past several days. I had a whole 2oz of jerky for lunch! I started that morning with a can of V8 and a handful of almonds. Then later in the evening I had a few sweet peppers and a pint of grape tomatoes. That and three bottles of water.

But I also did a full set of exercises, jogging, push-ups, sit-ups, and various weight lifts.

It's raining outside this morning, so it looks like I'll be stuck indoors. It's supposed to rain all day today and tomorrow.

I had to make a run to the grocery store this morning as I was all out of kefir. I managed to also pick up some blackberries, strawberries, tomatoes, and a vegetable tray, all will become my lunch and dinner over the next few days, that and some beef jerky I still have here at home.

Funny thing, last night I dreamed of going to this indian casino nearby and eating several slices of prime rib at their buffet. I've been there several times over the past several years, and they do have a great buffet. They also have great guacamole and they also have these roasted jalapeƱo peppers. I love to cut up the jalapeƱos into chunks, and then eat a piece of prime rib with it along with some guacamole.

I'm tempted to go there maybe this Sunday and take the wife. We actually did exactly that earlier this month, maybe that's why the dream happened.

Staying Disciplined in Weight Loss

Weighed in this morning at 157 pounds, up three pounds from Saturday's weigh in.

Saturday and Sunday I splurged on food.

I took the motorcycle out Saturday afternoon with some friends and we hit up The Beer Hunter in La Quinta. I had a chicken salad and two beers, but also had a piece of club sandwich that another guy couldn't finish. I had another beer later on after the ride. And that evening the wife and I went out for a steak dinner.

Sunday my wife and I went to Onami in Escondido for some sushi and sashimi. Afterwards we went looking around for a new motorcycle tire but couldn't find a store that had one the size I needed. Then we stopped for some frozen yogurt.

The closer I get to my weight loss goal of 150 pounds, the more I feel encouraged to relax and enjoy food. I really need to stick to discipline.

What also encourages me is that my wife and I recently paid off some debts, so now we have some money to spend. Having to save money actually helped me lose weight.

It's also getting quite cold here in SoCal the closer we get to winter. I go out jogging in the morning, and temps feel like they're in the 50s. My hands and legs get cold.

Slowly Reaching My Weight Loss Goal

Weighed in this morning at 154 pounds, down one from yesterday.

I started yesterday with a serving of kefir, and then not too long after my wife asked if we could go out for lunch. So, I had my usual salad bar, starting with a spinach salad consisting of tomatoes, bell peppers, cucumbers, and topped with salsa. Then I had some chicken soft tacos with guacamole, olives, and jalapenos. I drank down only one glass of iced tea.

That evening I ate the rest of the strawberries, and had some almonds too.

I tried exercising yesterday, doing my usual two-mile jog, but I didn't get far. I just didn't have the attitude. My body felt fine, but my mind wasn't into it. I think I only did about a half-mile, and then walked back home.

I'm starting to think more about getting a membership at a gym. I know I'm doing exercises at home, but wondered if I could do better with all the equipment at a gym. We finally got some debts paid off this month and we're in a better financial position. But I guess I'm in no hurry right now.

Riding Motorcycles Helps You Lose Weight

Weighed in at 155 pounds this morning. No change from yesterday.

Yesterday, after blogging about how I've cut back on eating meat, and eating more fruits and vegetables, I decided to jump on my motorcycle and find a mexican restaurant. I ended up having carnitas, with corn tortillas, rice, beans, chips, and salsa. I had a few glasses of Diet Coke. Later that evening, I snacked on some celery and sweet peppers.

I thought for sure I was going to gain a couple pounds from it, but somehow I managed to not gain anything.

There seems to be a mystery in riding motorcycles and weight loss. I wrote about this in an earlier post, that riding motorcycles somehow causes you to burn calories more quickly. I've heard that riding motocross is actually the second most physically demanding sport in the world, second only to soccer. But then again, riding street motorcycles is hardly as demanding as motocross. But on the other hand, they still both involve motorcycles, so somehow there's a correlation.

But what I can tell you about riding motorcycles, is that it requires a lot of concentration. You have to be on your toes at all times, simply because car drivers don't know what the Hell they're doing, and they can't see crap. Perhaps the mental energy alone in motorcycling is what causes the calories to come off more quickly.

As for today, the wife wants to go out for lunch, so I'm taking her out. Probably just find some place with a salad bar.

Eating Less Red Meat

Weighed in this morning at 155 pounds, no change from yesterday.

I started the day yesterday with my usual serving of kefir, but with an avocado. For lunch it was fruit and vegetables consisting of prunes, strawberries, sweet peppers, and celery. Sounds gross right? Well, I've actually learned to like this stuff. I found that celery is pretty good with salsa. Later on in the evening I had a can of V8 and almonds.

I also jogged that morning.

If you've been following my beef jerky review blog, you can tell I've been cutting back on jerky. Whereas I used to publish a new review every day, it's down to about once or twice a week now. And that's just a reflection of my change of diet.

It might sound like I've given up on meat altogether, but I haven't. I'm just picking and choosing my moments. It's strange. I used to crave beef, ham, pork, and all the red meat stuff, to the point where I've ignored the fruits and vegetables. Now it's the opposite. The last time I had meat was the chef salad last Tuesday.

I still love to eat burgers and steaks, it's just that I don't feel that urge to do so anymore. When I think about what to eat, I think what's good for my body, as opposed to what's good for my taste buds.

Before I started the diet, I obviously knew what was good for my body, it's just that I didn't have the will power to make the right choices.

It's funny that it took me several months of eating nothing but beef jerky, just to lose this much weight, only to end up gaining an appreciation for fruits and vegetables.

Elizabeth Hurley Eats Beef Jerky to Stay Slim

Weighed in this morning at 155 pounds, no change from yesterday.

Yesterday I started off with a serving of kefir and an avocado. For lunch I went out and had a chef salad with three glasses of Diet Coke. Later on, I had a beer. I didn't eat or drink anything else that day. I did some light exercises, but not much.

Elizabeth Hurley, the actress, apparently uses beef jerky to help her maintain her sexy figure. I read about it on Digital Spy...

Elizabeth Hurley has admitted that she eats beef jerky to help her stay slim.

Hurley told Easy Living magazine: "It's an excellent thing for anyone on the Atkins diet. I did a movie in South Africa with Ice Cube and it's all I ate. I was very thin - 121 lbs."

I'm not sure how serious she was by saying, "and it's all I ate". That is, we often exaggerate when we talk about how good something is. But on the other hand, I've had many days on the beef jerky diet where beef jerky was indeed all that I ate.

Jerky is definitely an effective food to lose weight fast, provided you can still work in other foods to balance out the nutrition, and of course still exercise.

Thanks to the folks at Gary West Meats for showing me that article.

Remembering My College Days

Weighed in this morning at 155 pounds, down 1 pound from yesterday.

I started yesterday morning with a serving a kefir and a handful of almonds. For lunch, I ate a pound of grapes and drank a can of V8. Later on in the evening I had 2oz of beef jerky and drank another can of V8. Throughout the day I had two bottles of water, and a bottle of Fruit2O.

Yesterday, the winds stopped blowing which made my allergies disappear. I felt good enough to go jogging in the afternoon, and did my two-miles. I also did some push-ups, sit-ups, and leg-exercises with weights.

That evening my wife and I visited the grocery store, and I spent my time going through the produce section looking for lunch and dinner for the next few days. I picked up some strawberries, some bell peppers, celery, some salsa, and avocados. I figure I'll work in some beef jerky too.

It's a major change of eating habits for me to buy up all this rabbit food. What's more funny is that I actually like this stuff. Well, the truth is that I've always liked fruits and vegetables, but I've always liked meat better. But I'm happy about being slim again, I feel like my old self, from back in the college days.

We can't truly be young again, but I'm still the same person that I was when I was 21. My body may be 43 now, but I'm close to being back to the same weight I was when I was 21. It almost feels as if I'm back to being 21, except I'm not as dumb. If you were skinny in college, and are now overweight, it's worth going through a weight-loss program just to feel that same way again.

Dealing with Allergies

Weighed in this morning at 156 pounds, down 3 pounds from yesterday.

I started off yesterday with a serving of kefir and a handful of almonds. For lunch I had a small veggie tray consisting of tomatoes, carrots and broccoli. In the evening I had some dried pineapple. I also had two cans of V8, a bottle of water, and a bottle of Fruit2O. I didn't do any jogging yesterday due to my feeling under the weather, but I did manage to do some weight lifting.

I still have the cold symptoms, runny nose, watery eyes, coughing. But my body feels ok. That makes me believe it's just allergies I'm dealing with. Yesterday, the wind was blowing all day. Having these symptoms makes it miserable for me to work at my laptop, and hard to concentrate. What I really feel like doing is soaking in the tub.

I noticed recently that my wife seems to be more interested in losing weight also. She's a few inches shorter than I, but is about a few pounds heavier than me. I think that knowing she's now heavier has put some pressure on her to lose weight. But so far, she hasn't been doing much to lose weight. Rather, she's been talking about weight loss, which tells me that what I've done for myself has her thinking a lot more about herself.

Tracking Your Weight Loss is Key

Weighed in this morning at 159 pounds, up 3 from Friday morning.

Friday I ended up at a friend's house, and had four beers, along with a plate of nachos, some grapes, and dried pineapple. We hung out until midnight, and then I went home. As it turned out, I gained 3 pounds from that when I weighed in Saturday morning.

On Saturday, the wife and I went to a buffet. I had slices of roast beef, topped with guacamole and roasted jalapenos. I also some potatoes, corn, tomatoes, and marinated artichokes. I drank Diet Coke. But that was all I had that day. Although, I did jog my 2-miles that morning. All in all, I didn't gain or lose weight that day.

While I was at my friend's house Friday night, we talked about weight loss. He had lost about 24 pounds over the past 6 months. He uses his iPhone to help him track his calories in and calories out. He has this app on the iPhone that let's him input what he has eaten, and how much exercise he's done, and it calculates the calories on everything. Then it tells him if he's on track to meeting his weight loss goal.

I mentioned to him that I kinda do the same thing with this blog, and my spreadsheet, though I don't calculate the calories in and out. Rather, I just weigh myself each morning to see if I'm meeting my goal. If it looks like I'm going to miss my goal, I try to adjust my exercises or switch to lower-calorie foods.

Either way, tracking one's weight loss progress is key. If you don't know you're on track or off track, then you won't know to adjust, and you won't know what's working and what isn't.

I mean, that's how I figured out beer really isn't that bad. It doesn't really add that much calories, assuming you're exercising daily. I could drink several beers one night, and witness a 3-4 pound weight gain the next morning, due to all the water. But in just one day of exercising, and pissing out all the water, I'd lose those 3-4 pounds. The point is that I only figured that out by tracking my progress daily.

At the very least, you just need a wall calendar placed next to your scale. Write down your weight every morning. Shoot for a weekly weight loss of 2 pounds, and a monthly weight loss of 8 pounds. I think that's pretty reasonable. As you watch your weight decrease or increase, you can strategize your exercises and dietary intake over the month.

So today, I'm thinking of staying home. I woke up with a runny nose, watery eyes, and coughing. I think that flu bug I shook off last week has managed to return. Either that or it's just allergies. Here in SoCal, the winds have started blowing.

I'm going load up on allergy meds, take a bath, and rest for awhile.

Losing Weight With Beer

Weighed in this morning at 156 pounds, no change from yesterday.

Started yesterday with my usual serving of kefir and a handful of almonds (a handful seems to be about 12-16 almonds). For lunch I had a small veggie tray of broccoli, tomatoes, and celery, with some pico de gallo. I drank one bottle of water, and one can of V8. I also did the full round of exercises, jogging, sit-ups, crunches, push-ups, and some weight lifts.

That evening I got together with a couple of friends at the local tavern for beer. I drank three bottles, and had a medium-sized chef-salad. My friends had fish-n-chips, and I was so tempted.

We got into a discussion about my weight loss, and I mentioned how much dedication goes into losing some 60 pounds over a year-and-a-half. I think the topic came up because when I ordered the chef salad, I told the waiter to bring me some salsa or hot sauce instead of salad dressing (they had no fat free dressing). So, they pointed to the three beers I was having, wondering how that fit into my diet plan.

I said beer doesn't really add much calories. One bottle of light beer is about 70 calories, whereas one bottle of regular beer is about 100 calories, and one bottle of dark beer is about 200 calories, and all the calories comes from carbs; there's no fat in beer. But much of the weight gain from beer comes from the water. You can piss out all the water, and then burn off the calories doing light exercises.

But on top of that, drinking three bottles of beer makes you feel full, from the water and the carbonation. I'm sure I could come up with a beer diet, just like a beef jerky diet. But the reality is that you still have to exercise, still have to eat fruits and vegetables, and ultimately you have to change your lifestyle to keep that weight off.

However, after having lost that much weight, and weighing at 156 pounds, I can't seem to hold my liquor anymore. Last night the only beer I drank was below 6% alcohol, which is medium compared to all other beers, and yet I was still drunk. When I weighed in the 200's, I could put those beers away and only start to feel a buzz.

So, if someone were to actually go on a "beer diet", they'd gradually get more drunk as they lost more weight.

Nobody Makes a Good Potassium Supplement

Weighed in this morning at 156 pounds, down one pound from yesterday.

I finished the month of September with a net loss of 11 pounds!

I started yesterday with my usual serving of kefir, followed by a 6oz can of light tuna packed in water. I drained the water, and added some lemon juice and szechwan pepper.

Later on, my wife wanted to get some lunch at Sizzler's, so I went with her. I had a spinach salad with cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, topped with pico de gallo. For my second plate I only had some corn tortillas with some guacamole and jalapenos. And two glasses of Diet Coke.

If you recall yesterday's post, I mentioned trying to eat more foods high in potassium and magnesium. While at Sizzler's, I had my Blackberry with me and accessed the USDA Nutritional Database. I'd look at what foods they had at the salad bar, and then looked up each one on the database. I avocados are very high in potassium and magnesium, and that's why I had the guacamole.

Navy beans are also very high in potassium and magnesium, but also much higher in fat and carbs.

After lunch, we headed to Wal-Mart to look for a multivitamin with potassium and magnesium. Unfortunately, every vitamin we found had only 1%, 2%, or 0% of the recommended daily allowance of potassium.

So went to the Vitamin Shoppe in Menifee. Same thing. I even found potassium-only supplements, that only had less than 2% of the RDA for potassium. It seems no one makes potassium supplements higher than that concentration. So, I settled with a multivitamin called "Men's MultiStart" from Natural Factors. It at least has 60% of the RDA for magnesium.

So, I'm going to rely on drinking cans of V8 to get my potassium. I'll have to drink between 2 to 4 cans a day. 4 cans will give me 100% of the RDA for potassium. I should be able to get potassium from eating more fresh vegetables as well. For the full RDA of magnesium, I bought a bag of almonds, unsalted. A handful of almonds in the morning plus the multivitamin should do it for that.

So basically, I'm tailing down the beef jerky, and increasing the fruits and vegetables. I'm only 6 pounds away from my goal of 150 anyways.