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Old 12-19-2012, 01:31 PM   #271
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I foil it and throw it in the oven. Keeps the meet moist, without having to dilute it - and you can cook it at 250 while you sleep - and let the meat rest wrapped in the oven while you're at work.

If you foil it, there's almost no way to screw up a pork shoulder.
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Old 12-19-2012, 04:25 PM   #272
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Z, congratulations on your well deserved victory and your scrumptious pork shoulder!
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Old 12-19-2012, 05:30 PM   #273
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Z - just wanted to say:
1. Congratulations on hitting two-derland!
2. Happy belated birthday!
3. Well played on the job front! Glad it worked out for you.
4. Now I'm craving pulled pork!
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Old 12-20-2012, 03:51 AM   #274
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Only time I've watched it being made, it was with whole pork-loin. That's why I'm 'fixated" there. I get the loins, because I haven't found a cheaper source for pork. Generally have to add the fat in the cooking.
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Old 12-20-2012, 11:18 PM   #275
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LiterateGriffin View Post
Only time I've watched it being made, it was with whole pork-loin. That's why I'm 'fixated" there. I get the loins, because I haven't found a cheaper source for pork. Generally have to add the fat in the cooking.
However you cook it is fine by me

I've got a lot of leftover, and a limited stock in my refrigerator (time to do some grocery shopping...)

I've got a bell pepper, a ton of shredded pork, 3 eggs, and some cheese.

So I cut the top off the bell pepper, and put an egg in a bowl with some heavy cream and beat it with a fork until it was well scrambled. I then poured the egg into the bell pepper, and diced a bit of cheese and put it into the egg mixture in the pepper. This filled the pepper about halfway, so I stuffed the rest with pork, and wrapped the whole thing in tinfoil to prevent the egg from expanding past the lip of the pepper (hopefully). Now I've got it cooking in the oven.

The best part about this kind of cooking is that I've got no idea how, or if this will turn out. But then, cooking really isn't so much of a challenge as it's made out to be. if you put things together that taste good, you get good tasting food
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Old 12-21-2012, 01:26 AM   #276
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In case you were wondering...



It turned out awesome.

The egg and cheese merged wonderfully, creating a kind of melty cheese sauce that doesn't congeal and rubberize the way melted cheese usually does.
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Old 12-21-2012, 03:18 AM   #277
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Yeah, that looks/sounded amazing. The LC stuffed bell-pepper! I love it!

It's what we call at my house "experimental cooking". Generally, it USUALLY leads to some really amazing food... or to everything getting dumped in the trash, and a quick trip out that night. The latter is actually pretty rare. The only "bad" thing was when it happened on my son's birthday. Nearly a year ago, and he still reminds us. ~chuckle~

OK... tonight "has to be" roast bird. It's a Holiday thing -- so got a chicken thawing, and will be doing a salt-rub on it later, and some almond-meal stuffing. BUT, for later in the week? Yeah... looking at pulled pork... and maybe some peppers!

One of my challenges with getting by butt in gear has been fat. I'd stopped eating enough of it. So the other day, day you really got me back here, I mixed up some CO with some ghiradelli chocolate. (I was craving chocolate, and it's easier for me to give in to that kind of thing than resist -- just give in on MY terms.) I ate several spoonfuls, though I don't much recommend it. (Thing is, it satisfied the chocolate-need in the first spoon... which tells me I just MIGHT have been thinking about a migraine.)

Then? Dumped the rest in my bulletproof coffee in the morning! Yeah, definite win, on that one!
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I haven't found anywhere else to track this, and am not sure how accurate my scale is, but Body fat:
10/26/2012: 39.0% 10/27/2012: 39.2%
10/28/2012: 39.3% 10/30/2012: 38.5%
10/31/2012: 38.6% 11/02/2012: 36.5%
11/03/2012: 39.1% 11/04/2012: 39.3%
11/05/2012: 39.3% 11/07/2012: 38.5%
11/10/2012: 38.9%
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Old 12-21-2012, 04:28 AM   #278
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Hey Z, just dropping to wish you happy holidays. Do check out Misery Bear if you haven't yet! I'm off to London this evening so may not be around but will be thinking of you and my other LCFs. So glad to hear things worked out with your job...
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Old 12-21-2012, 06:51 AM   #279
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That paprika looks jummy! I use paprika a lot, especialy the yellow ones are tasty!
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Old 12-21-2012, 07:42 PM   #280
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Hey Z, just dropping to wish you happy holidays. Do check out Misery Bear if you haven't yet! I'm off to London this evening so may not be around but will be thinking of you and my other LCFs. So glad to hear things worked out with your job...
Thanks for thinking of me.

Enjoy your trip!
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Old 12-22-2012, 05:53 AM   #281
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Z, your stuffed pepper looks delicious. It is wise to keep cooking and experimenting -- it keeps you engaged and satiated on low carb.
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Old 12-23-2012, 12:05 AM   #282
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Enjoy reading your journal..

Congrats on a new number!

Just want to wish you a nice Christmas.
Please try to do something that you enjoy..
a movie perhaps. Don't stay home the whole day.
Will make you sad.
Sorry your away from your wife at this time
but Feb. is just around the corner. I know
time goes fast except when we want it to.

Take Care

Last edited by BellaRose; 12-23-2012 at 12:11 AM..
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Old 12-23-2012, 10:39 AM   #283
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The pork shoulder slow roasted in the oven sounds really good. How do you season it?
I hope you have a relaxing holiday!
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Old 12-23-2012, 11:28 AM   #284
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The pork shoulder slow roasted in the oven sounds really good. How do you season it?
I hope you have a relaxing holiday!
I made a rub consisting of
  • Ancho chili powder
  • Chipotle chili powder (sparingly)
  • White pepper
  • Smoked paprika
  • Salt

After cooking it, I pulled the pork apart, and added some more of those spices about 5 capfuls of liquid smoke, and mixed it all in. With the liquid smoke, I added 2 capfuls at a time, until I had the right amount - it's really easy to go overboard on that stuff.
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Old 12-24-2012, 05:58 AM   #285
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Z, I just want to wish you a very Merry Christmas. I know that this holiday is less than ideal for you as you are in Tuscon, missing your wife and home in Seattle. Please try to do some nice things for yourself -- like maybe see a movie or go for a nice walk in the lovely AZ weather. You are making great progress and you should feel really proud of yourself for ending 2012 on such a high note both personally and professionally.
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Old 12-24-2012, 06:30 AM   #286
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...And if you're being a humbug, go see an action-flick. Enjoy the ample parking and lack of traffic.

Our morning commute here is usually OK going in, but pretty hairy coming back... I generally get off at "the wrong exit", because it's not POSSIBLE to get over enough lanes to get off where I should.

Today? Not only was I able to get over, easily, but I was able to get over a whole extra lane, so I could go get gas! (Sounds minor, but it really, truly isn't.)
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Old 12-29-2012, 03:48 AM   #287
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Let's get the obvious stuff out of the way:

"How was your Christmas?"

For as long as I can remember, I have always utterly loathed the 7 days that follow my birthday, culminating with Christmas.

I think it stems from my childhood. I have no tolerance for dishonesty, and Christmas marks the first time I was certain that I was being lied to by someone who was supposed to be trustworthy. And not just someone, but everyone. I remember clearly, being 4 years old and wondering why they would continue to lie to my face about this Santa Claus character. Then and there I learned the lesson that you cannot trust anyone, especially those closest to you. To this day I've never really forgiven them for their outrageous dishonesty.

Aside from which - Do you know how Santa makes it all the way around the world in a single night? He skips the poor kids' houses.

So, growing up, Christmas was that magical time of year when everyone but me got rewarded for their alleged good behavior. And then, as if that wasn't enough perceived injustice for a child to deal with, I had to endure being interrogated about it by every person I meet for the two weeks before and after Christmas: "Are you excited about Christmas?" And "How was your Christmas?"

"No," and "It was a Tuesday" respectively.

Now that I'm an adult, gifts don't really matter anymore. If I want something, I can go buy it myself. But I have only bitter memories of this day that everyone else loves so much.

As much as I would usually not have enjoyed myself, this year was much worse. That said, I'm still here and Christmas is gone, for now.

Despite my aversion, I thank you for your well-wishing, and hope that your holidays were everything that you wanted of them.

"How did you do on your diet over the holidays"
100% on plan, but I quit weighing for a few days so that I could spend more time planted on the overstuffed recliner in front of my television playing a video game about a post-nuclear wasteland overrun by mutants and roving gangs of raiders (A.K.A. 'my happy place' )


I didn't come here to be a total downer.

The whole point of this post is looking forward. If December is the darkest part of my year, it is only because the rest of my year is so much brighter. From here on out, days are given meaning by their content, and not inherited context.

I'm hitting the new year weighing nearly 50 pounds less than I started it. And by this time next year, I could well lose another 100 pounds. Or more. Who knows. Even if I only average a pound a week, that's 52 more pounds gone.

I've already accomplished all of this year's goals. And I've already laid out next year's goals. I have a firm timeline for the things I need to accomplish over the next few months, and my low carb lifestyle has become self-sustaining.

It's been an endless gauntlet of cakes and candy and fries and pizza... The company even did a free italian food day. Pasta, YAY!

These aren't foods that I'm choosing not to eat. These are foods I cannot eat: It's not on the menu. I don't eat glass, I don't eat gravel, and I don't eat wheat. Like I wrote before, when I came down with a cold, I bought some NyQuil. Realizing, when I got home that there was probably sugar in it, I looked it up immediately - and sure enough, NyQuil is utterly LOADED with sugar.

The bottle remains unopened, at someone else's house.

I'll starve to death before I go off on some uncontrolled carb binge. I've taken it completely off the table, and that's made it easy to stay in absolute compliance. There's still room for me to cut out a few minor vices. Avocados, Onions in excess... And I need to start making my own sausages, so I can control the curing process and ingredient selection.

There's room for improvement, but compared to this time last year, my diet has changed far more drastically than anything I would ever have believed. I'll take a successfully changed root cause over an unqualified end result any day. The question isn't IF I'll hit 155 -- but simply when.

I push my walk a little harder every day. I started out at 25 minutes to get to work from my apartment. Now it takes me 10. I try to feel the burn in my legs every day. I've incorporated other exercises, to ensure that I'm building strength and retaining muscle as I lose fat. I eat my breakfast standing up. I stand up and pace when I'm on the phone. I walk to and from lunch.

I'm intentionally increasing my activity level as my body is able to withstand more. And I'm starting to regain muscularity in my legs, back, and arms. None of that body builder business, but I'm not made entirely of jello anymore.

I'm regaining so much agility, and I can even run for short distances (across the street for example). I couldn't do that before. I can get up from the floor, or down to the floor without tremendous difficulty. I can scratch any spot on my back again. My face is looking visibly leaner in the mirror, and I'm feeling stronger when I have to lift things. I can stay on my feet for hours before I absolutely have to sit.

These might sound like mundane and simple things. But I couldn't do all of this in September.

My quality of life has drastically improved over the course of a single season

It can only get better from here. I look forward to sharing these little breakthroughs with you as they come along.

May the new year bring you all success in your endeavors.

Last edited by Z; 12-29-2012 at 03:53 AM..
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Old 12-29-2012, 07:06 AM   #288
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Z, that was an excellent post. Your championship season is due to your continued diligence and strength. This is a good message that I needed to hear. Thank you.
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Old 12-29-2012, 12:07 PM   #289
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Great, inspiring post; you're an excellent writer.

Oh, and Merry Christmas!
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Old 12-29-2012, 01:53 PM   #290
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Great, inspiring post; you're an excellent writer.

Oh, and Merry Christmas!


Thanks.
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Old 12-30-2012, 12:11 AM   #291
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Awesome post. It feels great when you can notice the change you are going trough. ^^
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Old 12-30-2012, 06:29 AM   #292
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Way to go Z. The best is yet to come!
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Old 12-30-2012, 01:04 PM   #293
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Z, congrats on all your accomplishments and the list of benefits you have found from changing your lifestyle this past year. I love reading about what people can do now as they lose weight that they could not do just a short time ago. For me I was able to cross my legs yesterday and did not need a seatbelt extender for an airplane seat.

Also congrats on starting to change your body from jello to firm through exercise. I am just starting to walk a bit now. I hate exercise but I hate being fat and jiggly more.

I hope you have a good new year and enjoy playing you video game on your time off.
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Old 12-31-2012, 08:01 AM   #294
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Z Ė I can relate to so much of what you said in your after Christmas post. Iím starting my third year of this way of eating (and living) on January 15, 2013. Yes the date is important Ė itís when my life finally changed in a positive direction instead of another negative one such as the date of my first heart attach, my quadruple bypass surgery, the diagnoses of rheumatoid arthritis or the day I learned I have type II diabetes.

The physical changes I experienced were so dramatic that I couldnít believe them at first. I could breath easier. I swear I could think clearer. It seemed as if a brain fog had been lifted from me. My joints not only seemed to ache much less but I felt like they were moving more freely. I know that much of this could have been in my mind but those positive mental reinforcements made the drastic changes I was making seem even more worthwhile.

I started on the treadmill at 1.5 miles per hour, an incline of .5 and I would last about 10 minutes. That was the only exercise I did at the beginning. For the next year all I did was increase time, speed and incline. At my one-year anniversary I started working out with weights. Being 62 years old at the time I figured I would need some expert guidance since there was no way I was going to follow those insane dvd exercise programs. I found a young man who works with me twice a week. My progress has been slow but steady. Can I bench press 250lbs? No, but I can do three sets of 10 with 80lbs. Can I run a mile? No, but I can do 30 minutes on the treadmill at 4 miles per hour with an incline of 9 as my warm up before weights.

I know what Iím doing is the right thing for me and Iím glad itís working for you. I enjoy reading your post. Sorry about todays awful weather here in Tucson today, rainy and cold, but summer is just around the corner.
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Old 12-31-2012, 10:11 AM   #295
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Christmas is a tough time because it has so much baggage. Woulda been a good day to, say, go catch a Tarantino-flick.

You playing Fallout, then? ~chuckles~ Yes, I'm a gamer, as well as just a geek. (Though I have to admit Fallout is more my husband's taste than mine.)

And I know the feeling, about being so pleased with the "small" improvements -- things that SOUND little, on paper (Oh, I can get up off the floor) but are real life-changers when you're coming from a place where you COULDN'T.

Be careful -- increased exercise is addicting! Oh, sure, it STARTS innocently enough: A few frames of bowling, a walk to the office... Then, before you know it, you're trying to see just how much you can get the ole body to do... "Maybe now I can try..." Yeah. Then, before you know it, you actually need to go buy clothes for the purpose of getting sweaty in them. It's DANGEROUS, I tell ya!

I keep thinking of you and your wife. And the fact that a lot of this journey you've been on, she hasn't been physically there with you for. My husband is my bedrock. He still found me attractive enough to want me when I was obese, but the light in his eyes when he sees me in something that proves I'm NOT obese anymore... Well, he's seen me every day of that journey. Your wife -- she's going to get to see you "fresh" -- her last real memory of you (as opposed to, say, a Skype-memory) was a fair bit of weight ago. What a great "surprise" it's going to be, when she gets to hold a smaller Z in her arms, come February! There's a joy, in watching someone you love get healthier. She's going to get that joy in a big chunk, instead of dribbled out day-by-day.

I may not have started at 300+, but where I started, my health and physical ability seems to have been in a place similar to where yours was.

My ride hasn't been smooth, and I've occasionally made compromises. I'm dealing with the results of that right now.

We'll both get there in the end. And we'll both be effectively YOUNGER in 5 years than the barely-mobile person we were on Jan. 1 2012.
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Old 12-31-2012, 01:09 PM   #296
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Z I have been following you post and you are amazing. If it was not for this site most of us would fail. I look forward to this journey with you.
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Old 01-01-2013, 03:14 AM   #297
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Originally Posted by Jrw85705 View Post
Z – I can relate to so much of what you said in your after Christmas post. I’m starting my third year of this way of eating (and living) on January 15, 2013. Yes the date is important – it’s when my life finally changed in a positive direction instead of another negative one such as the date of my first heart attach, my quadruple bypass surgery, the diagnoses of rheumatoid arthritis or the day I learned I have type II diabetes.

The physical changes I experienced were so dramatic that I couldn’t believe them at first. I could breath easier. I swear I could think clearer. It seemed as if a brain fog had been lifted from me. My joints not only seemed to ache much less but I felt like they were moving more freely. I know that much of this could have been in my mind but those positive mental reinforcements made the drastic changes I was making seem even more worthwhile.

I started on the treadmill at 1.5 miles per hour, an incline of .5 and I would last about 10 minutes. That was the only exercise I did at the beginning. For the next year all I did was increase time, speed and incline. At my one-year anniversary I started working out with weights. Being 62 years old at the time I figured I would need some expert guidance since there was no way I was going to follow those insane dvd exercise programs. I found a young man who works with me twice a week. My progress has been slow but steady. Can I bench press 250lbs? No, but I can do three sets of 10 with 80lbs. Can I run a mile? No, but I can do 30 minutes on the treadmill at 4 miles per hour with an incline of 9 as my warm up before weights.

I know what I’m doing is the right thing for me and I’m glad it’s working for you. I enjoy reading your post. Sorry about todays awful weather here in Tucson today, rainy and cold, but summer is just around the corner.
Way to go, man. Seriously, what a tremendous change. And thanks for stopping by!

I don't mind a single day of rain. For me, it was knowing that the rain would never go away that was depressing. That persistent and boundless, featureless yawning gray void that hid me from the sun for 36 unbearable years... I hated every minute of it. A brief spotted overcast that fails to obscure the sky completely and that is gone by evening? Doesn't bother me one bit, because it can't even manage to hang out for a week.

I look at the before and after on your avatar, and it seems to me that a lot more has changed there than just weight loss. You don't merely look healthier - you look fundamentally happier. That's not surprising to me in the slightest, and again, not simply because of the weight.

Early in the process, it seemed to me like weight was the problem. I was wrong. Weight is a symptom. A problematic symptom, yes, but a symptom nonetheless. Adiposity didn't force me to assume an unhealthy diet. Being fat helped keep me in the couch, but it's not what put me there to begin with.

Being fat is an effect - not a root cause.

Don't believe me? Try this little exercise: Unfat yourself. Right this moment, lose 50 pounds of fat. I'll even give you a little time. Say, 2 hours. Easier to go up than down, you say? Then gain 50 pounds of fat 2 hours.

2 days?

2 weeks?

2 months?


I know I'm going to catch some resistance on this one, but It's not at all easy to gain fat tissue. The accumulation takes years and years of unhealthy eating. With utterly uncontrolled high-carb, high-fat, high-everything eating and no exercise at all - it took me 2 years and 6 months to gain 50 pounds. It kept coming on like clockwork - 20 pounds a year, for a decade to get to where I was.

Being fat is something that happened to me as the result of years of sustained poor eating habits. Constant unshakable depression played a role, along with the weather (which I believe is a huge component of the depression), but even above these factors? I think it was the carbs.

Look at the man in your before picture, JRW. I know that look. The face, the posture... I've seen it in the mirror. It's the visage of a man whose will to live has been exceeded by his longevity. Downcast and beaten by life. It's the face of inner pain, buried deep.

Now, to be fair maybe that picture was just taken on a particularly sad day. Maybe the flash went off too early and you're wincing. Maybe I'm just reading it wrong.

But look at that after picture, and tell me that guy doesn't look 50 times healthier and 100 times happier.

I wouldn't have understood it before, but I see that transformation, and it makes sense to me now.

Something was holding me back. More than just arthritis and depression. When I cut the carbs, it's like a veil was lifted from my life. The constant exhaustion, the mental weariness, the swollen joints - all of it began to evaporate as quickly as the fat melting off of my midsection. Low Carb isn't just about weight loss. It's the solution to a root cause that has been grinding me into dust since my mid-20s without me even realizing it. And as my agility returns, I find myself out in the world more often. Not because of my overwhelming willpower to force myself out of the couch, but simply because I can. It turns out, when you can be active - you choose to be active.

The fog was lifted from my life. It's even helping with my depression. Make no mistake, depression will always be a problem for me, but I was so filled with apathy that I wouldn't get up to feed myself if no one was home. I sat in one place for an entire year. I went beyond despair to the place where the only thing stopping me from ending it all was a strong moral conviction against it. A conviction that was eroding out from under me every day, as everything in my life mattered less and less to me. The color had bled from my life into the damp gray pavement, washed out and washed away by the neverending rain.

I took the carbs out, and now I'm accomplishing things in rapid fire. I've made sweeping and dramatic changes to my life to ensure that I will lose the weight. I've stopped dwelling on symptoms (which cannot be affected directly) started isolating and correcting root causes.

My stomach is smaller, and some of my old shirts fit? Big deal... You know what's better than that? Every other part of this journey. Being able to scratch my own back again. Being agile enough to move, and bend, and stop, and go with relative ease. The sudden realization that I am significantly smaller than I used to be in relation to hallways and cars and airplane seats, and other people. The seemingly endless energy I enjoy compared to a few months ago. The freedom from junk food. This sudden burst of productivity and organization. My bowling form is better than it's ever been, because I've lost so much weight and built enough strength that I can control my body in motion in a way that I couldn't 50 pounds ago. I'm constantly active. I'm using every minute of every day to do something that matters to me. I'm crushing it at work - I got a 98% on my last test, and I'm way ahead of the curve for the final test (Friday).

By any criteria you might choose, I am a better person today than I was 6 months ago. Losing some weight has definitely played a big role in the systemic improvement of mine - But the carbs were the boulder that was holding the lid to this box closed. Freed from this subtle poison, things will only get better from here.


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Quote:
Originally Posted by LiterateGriffin View Post
Christmas is a tough time because it has so much baggage. Woulda been a good day to, say, go catch a Tarantino-flick.

You playing Fallout, then? ~chuckles~ Yes, I'm a gamer, as well as just a geek. (Though I have to admit Fallout is more my husband's taste than mine.)

And I know the feeling, about being so pleased with the "small" improvements -- things that SOUND little, on paper (Oh, I can get up off the floor) but are real life-changers when you're coming from a place where you COULDN'T.

Be careful -- increased exercise is addicting! Oh, sure, it STARTS innocently enough: A few frames of bowling, a walk to the office... Then, before you know it, you're trying to see just how much you can get the ole body to do... "Maybe now I can try..." Yeah. Then, before you know it, you actually need to go buy clothes for the purpose of getting sweaty in them. It's DANGEROUS, I tell ya!

I keep thinking of you and your wife. And the fact that a lot of this journey you've been on, she hasn't been physically there with you for. My husband is my bedrock. He still found me attractive enough to want me when I was obese, but the light in his eyes when he sees me in something that proves I'm NOT obese anymore... Well, he's seen me every day of that journey. Your wife -- she's going to get to see you "fresh" -- her last real memory of you (as opposed to, say, a Skype-memory) was a fair bit of weight ago. What a great "surprise" it's going to be, when she gets to hold a smaller Z in her arms, come February! There's a joy, in watching someone you love get healthier. She's going to get that joy in a big chunk, instead of dribbled out day-by-day.

I may not have started at 300+, but where I started, my health and physical ability seems to have been in a place similar to where yours was.

My ride hasn't been smooth, and I've occasionally made compromises. I'm dealing with the results of that right now.

We'll both get there in the end. And we'll both be effectively YOUNGER in 5 years than the barely-mobile person we were on Jan. 1 2012.
Yeah - Fallout: New Vegas. I find that the worlds they create are so complete... Amazingly in depth stories told without a single word of narration or exposition. The fact that (with some obvious exceptions) it could really have happend - could happen still. And the realization as you tear through some gutted out town full of mutant junkies, when you walk past a centuries old playground dilapidated from disuse, or a twisted and rusted tricycle, and the real implications of the nuclear apocalypse dawn on you. You start thinking in terms of billions.

And the world left behind? Forever ruined. You don't fix the world in Fallout (despite your efforts). You can only manage to survive it for a time.

It's not all video games, though. I'm looking forward to joining a bowling league once I can get my bowling balls down this way - It might simply be worth it to spend the money and get a new ball drilled to use in the interim - but I can't imagine bowling with only one ball. It takes an arsenal. A plain urethane ball with a wide gradual arcing hook for dry lanes and short patterns, a hook monster for dramatic snakebite reaction on long patterns (or game 3 carrydown) - and something right in the middle, for reliable reaction on average conditions.

I really feel like I'm heading in the right direction with this. With all of the changes I've made to the way I'm living my life, how could I not lose the rest of this weight faster than I have a right to anticipate? And it's been really great to have people around for support. I'm glad that you're back on the webpage - the place wasn't the same without you around



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Quote:
Originally Posted by sassy40 View Post
Z I have been following you post and you are amazing. If it was not for this site most of us would fail. I look forward to this journey with you.
Thanks Sassy!

I've been really overwhelmed with all of the people who've stopped in on this thread to say hi, and share their stories. I really think that all of us, just by being here, are showing a commitment to our self improvement that many people won't have on their own. It's all about internalizing the habits that you need to develop. And so we come here and we find our mantras, axioms, and slogans; our champions, and our brothers and sisters in arms. We take what we need, and leave what we don't.

For me, above anything else, I need to be genuine. If I fabricate some superhero story about myself, and receive praise on that basis - it would be empty praise indeed - because it would belong only to a character. But if I share the real me, and make real connections with real people, everything that comes from those interactions is real. And if everything is real, I've got a conduit for real accountability. Real praise and encouragement - and disagreement, should I stray too far from the path.

And if I always strive to be real, I have to consider what I am willing to do in my diet, knowing that I will have to share it with you. What are the corners I can cut? Where can I tighten the ship? All of these things have to be considered when I ask myself - Am I willing to stand publicly next to the decisions I have made for my diet? Am I willing to stand in the light or shadow of my decisions?

And so I've stayed on what is essentially induction-level Atkins since October. I've endeavored to remain at the strictest level with which I can live, as opposed to trying to find the most relaxed level with which I can still succeed. The extra discipline up front has paid off in the long run, as I am no longer haunted by cravings for verboten foods. It isn't a moral issue - it is a physiological one: I am addicted to carbohydrate - starches and sugars. I experience withdrawal symptoms when I remove them from my diet. Indulging in them only makes me want more. And more. If I've eaten ten thousand slices of pizza, not a single one of them was good enough to satisfy my need.

This whole community: It only has what value you give it. It is only as real as you make it. It is only true if you are true to it. It only means something if you mean it. It only helps if you believe in it.

I've got to tell you, after this last month, I don't feel amazing. I've been whinier than I like to be in my posts, and not nearly prolific enough in my writing. I promise to try to space out the pathos a little better.

That said, thank you for seeing something in me that I cannot see myself. Maybe this is why community is so important. Despite my ceaseless introspection, I am my own biggest myopia. But in sharing with the community, I can come to know myself through hearing the struggles, stumbles, and triumphs of others.

Last edited by Z; 01-01-2013 at 03:33 AM..
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Old 01-03-2013, 02:23 AM   #298
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Happy New Year, Z! The nights are getting shorter and the days brighter. Next year you'll be smaller by some significant number, acclimated to Arizona weather and complaining you're cold when the temperature drops below 70!
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Old 01-07-2013, 03:18 AM   #299
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Happy New Year, Z! The nights are getting shorter and the days brighter. Next year you'll be smaller by some significant number, acclimated to Arizona weather and complaining you're cold when the temperature drops below 70!
Happy new year, back atcha!

I know I'm supposed to post more often, but I really captured what's been on my mind on that last post:

The weight isn't the problem. It's not the focus, and there's nothing I can do about it directly. I can only change the weight by focusing on behaviors. Increasingly, I'm looking for opportunities to change. Fortunately, I suppose, I possess a great many habits which could benefit from improvement.

If I only lose 1 pound a week, I'll finish out the year on the other side of the 100 pounds down marker

I'm currently averaging 2.88 pounds lost per week. if I keep that rate up, I'll hit my goal and be in maintenance by next winter.

What feels realistic to me, assuming that the rate of loss will continue to slow as I approach goal is probably 220 pounds this time next year, or a total loss of 76 pounds for the year. That said, I've heard entirely too many stories about dramatic and rapid weight loss. Heck - 50 pounds in 4 months? I am a story of dramatic rapid weight loss. And lots of floppy skin. That's ok. I can live with that.

And so as I focus on everything else in life, it's good to know that I can put the diet on cruise control and it'll take care of itself.
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Old 01-07-2013, 04:31 AM   #300
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Z View Post
And lots of floppy skin. That's ok. I can live with that.

And so as I focus on everything else in life, it's good to know that I can put the diet on cruise control and it'll take care of itself.
Isn't that the truth! I'll take saggy skin over what I had before ANY day!

Being fat and unhealthy is a full-time occupation. Once we give up on that, our life starts creeping back and filling in the empty places. Suddenly, it's actually possible to work on our bowling form, rip out the yard, or enjoy going for a walk.
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