Saturday, April 21, 2007

Day 77: Water

Update: 219.8 lbs, 38.4 lbs so far, Goal Reached Day 74. - 11.6 lbs to NEW 50 lb goal.

Woke up today and it's raining. Still not feeling great, so I'm hesitant to go out and walk/jog or bike in it today, although normally I don't mind too much. I'm also supposed to take 40-50 mid high kids to an outdoor activity which will likely have to shift gears now, and I knew a few people who had golf on their mind for this morning. That darned water is really just putting a cramp in the day.

Funny thing about water, I don't really care for it. When I was a kid somewhere around 8, I stepped out a little too far in the Willamette, got my foot stuck, and was certain I was a goner. Turns out my little dark brown hair was still kind of floating on the top of the water, but when you're stuck even that low, it's plenty frightening. Really, ever since then, water hasn't been my thing. I have taken tons of groups rafting and skiing over the years, and don't mind getting out in the boat to take pictures, but I just don't get out of the boat (sounds like a Casting Crowns song coming on) -- it's just not my thing.

I have, one time, taken a wild ride around an inlet on a jetski, but only because the Coggerman brought one and insisted. I had actually been having a decent time taking the ski-do out for a spin, so from somewhere deep inside, I felt a moment of bravery, donned the life jacket and climbed on. It was one of those jetskis that you have to hit hard enough for it to pull you out of the water, but as anyone there can attest (and some video footage that has been leaked out to the internet will show) I never got that badboy going faster than about, oh 5 miles an hour. I throttled it a bit, maybe once, and it was enough to show me that the 2 stroke motor would just eat me up like a chess pie, so I basically took the jetski, at an idle, around the inlet, as sharp as it would turn at that speed, to get me back to the beach. When a jetski is only going 5 miles an hour max, dragging a big brown guy behind it, it turns at about a 3 degree radius, so it took a few for me to get back in. Good times for everyone watching, I'm sure. I think later that week I provided an equal level of entertainment when I made it about 12 feet off the ground rock climbing at Smith Rock.

All that to say, it's been a love-hate relationship with water...mostly hate. I'm trying to drink 64+ ounces a day, but am just not digging it. I don't like the taste, I don't like the water-logged feeling, and I don't like walking to the water closet every 10 minutes as a result. But I'm trying. I know my body retains water when I don't drink it (crazy, I know) and the weight loss efforts are either hindered, or helped by how my water consumption is going, so I keep trying. I dig some of the carbonated or spring waters, but you gotta be careful for sweeteners or sodium that kind of defeat the purpose.

So, water, my nemesis, looks like we meet again.


Friday, April 20, 2007

Day 76: Ravena's Revenge

Update: 220.2 lbs, 38.0 lbs so far, Goal Reached Day 74. - 12.0 lbs to NEW 50 lb goal.

So yesterday morning, I decided to give The Loop another shot, as previously discussed in my Life Lessons From The Road post. If you read it, then you know this is a 12.5-ish mile loop heading out into the boonies from my neighborhood, which was full of exciting experiences last time I road it. Yesterday's ride had some moments worth mentioning as well.

First off, as I headed out, I should have perhaps been warned by the 'tooley fog' (actually spelled tule fog) that was wafting across the fields of North Keizer as I started my ride. Turns out it tule fog is actually a California thing, so I guess it wasn't a tule fog, so to speak, but you always hear how someone 'headed out into a tule fog, and that was the last we saw of them,' so it made me wonder if something momentus was ahead in the ride.

Ok, that's not really a tule fog, just a little light mist over some mud. Well, anyway, by the time I got to the home of the CGS (chubby german shepard,) I was ready for our little game of I-can't-really-catch-you-but-make-me-feel-good-anyway pick up the pace riding, but I think CGS must have known I was cruising to the smooth sounds of Kenny Loggins at that point because he just kind of gave me the Chubby Homey 'sup' nod, and didn't really even budge. I thought maybe he was setting me up for NSCGS (not so chubby german shepard) but he was nowhere to be found, so I think we've perhaps reached an understanding. Neither of us really want to work that hard in our relationship.

Before long I had reached the point where two roads diverged, and being a man on just one bike, I could not travel them both. My heart must have forgotten the little episode last time because once again, it insisted that we give Ravena's Hill another shot. Again, if you read the entry linked above, you know this is the magical hill that pulled my bike to a standstill position. I've taken a few photos for you, but they won't really do it justice:

That's the view from a couple hundred can see the less steep road to the left, and Ravena calling like an evil temptress to the right. You lose it in the trees right away so you don't get to see how steep, or long it is. Granted, it's somewhere between 100 feet and 100 yards, but plenty daunting. So as I was saying, the old ticker said 'lets give it a go again!' while my legs and head were saying 'you seem to have forgotten that we didn't get very far last time.' Ticker replied with 'yes, but remember that we didn't quite have the whole gear shifter thing figured out, and BBGOaB (big brown geek on a bike) tried going up in about 8th gear, instead of 1st or 2nd gear.' Well, the heart won out, and I downshifted almost as far as I could before giving it a go, cranked up "Harder to Breath" on the Shuffle and had at it. Little did I know how appropriate that song selection was going to be.

Somewhere near the 1/3 point, where the bike just stopped last time, I realized this was one of the hardest thing a guy who's just barely getting back into shape should be doing. The low gear made it easy for me to spin my back tire on the still damp pavement, the contortions of my body digging and pulling, digging and pulling made the front end come up once or twice, worrying me that I might flip the bike over, and I was zig zagging all over the road looking for a less-steep place to climb. It's amazing I didn't just fall to the ground because not too much further past the 1/3 mark, my heart started beating like a distant jungle drum, cranked up to 11. I felt a fire in the back of my throat from trying to suck in more air, and my head felt like it was going to pop and shoot off my neck like a balloon at a birthday party. At the 2/3 mark the head and legs were screaming 'give it up big guy, this isn't for you!'

Normally, I bail at this point. Probably because I knew I'd have to blog about it, I kept going, and without getting too dramatic about the inner fire, or the will to succeed, I made it to the top. I had to get off the bike and walk around for a minute, drinking and spitting out water, but I made it. The next couple miles of my ride were really unpleasant, and I didn't get out of that funk until about the point I reached the BS Market (yes, we really have a BS Market on the course...but you can't buy what the name implies there.) But from near the top, here is another shot...again, not really painting the picture of just how hard that climb was for me, but at least maybe you'll get an idea - right at the crest, you'll see just the top of the stop sign that's hidden by the hill itself.
At this moment, I'm not sure that's anything I want to experience again. The old ticker has become quite the litigator though, so he may make his case for why we should try the next time we approach it, but maybe the head and legs will talk some sense in to him. Thank you to all of those who stopped there with me at the stop sign and asked if I needed a call to the paramedics, it's good to know there are still people who care.

That's the bike, without me on it because I'm laying on the ground trying to catch my breath. When the lady at that house came over to ask me to move so she could back her Escalade out, I agreed on the condition that she take a picture of my bike for me. Whoo, tomorrow I'm driving the truck.


p.s. - I couldn't come up with any kind of iconic photo today for the top-corner pic, but then low and behold...Ravena's Ring.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Day 75: New Day, New Goal

Update: 220.0 lbs, 38.2 lbs so far, Goal Reached Day 74. - 11.8 lbs to NEW 50 lb goal.

As you can see by the daily update tag, I've added in my Goal Reached note and the balance remaining to my new goal. I don't really know how long it will take me to reach that goal...maybe a month or so, maybe less, but the progress has definitely slowed since starting. Some simple facts for you:

The first 30 days I dropped 21 lbs. The second 30 days I dropped 11.4 lbs. The last 15 days I dropped 5.8 lbs. So, doing the math, it would appear that it would take probably 30 days to drop, maybe that's a minimum. Kind of a bummer because I was really hoping to do 50 lbs in 3 months, like Kyle from my first post, but in the long run, I'm going to be happy to just have it off of me. If I was a gambling man, I'd probably conservatively guess the week of May 21, but that's just out of nowhere, based on recent facts.

I'm doing the Starbucks Challenge, Part 2 for anyone who wants to make a guess as to when I'll hit 50 lbs. Sending out the card to the winner of Round 1 today, so get your guesses in. I'll keep it open for the next week or so, and then we'll cut it off. Get those guesses in!

Thanks again for all the encouragement, and nice thoughts yesterday.

Release the Pounds!


Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Day 74: Gooooaaaaaaaalllllllll!

Update: 220.0 lbs, 38.2 lbs so far, 38 lb goal hit!

Well butter my buns and call me a biscuit, I actually hit my first goal today and crossed the 38 lb mark to get to 220.0 lbs even. It's been a dern long time since I've been down to this size, and I have to say, feels pretty good.

For so many years I've been saying 'had I only started 3 months ago, I bet I could have lost 20 lbs by now,' but I was usually saying that
while dipping some steak fries in my ranch, and handing my bowl to the waiter at Red Robin to "fill 'er back up!"

Well 74 days ago, on February 3, I started out from the Shire like a 285.2 lb Frodo (could you imagine how wide he would have to be to squeeze that much into that height?) -- not sure where my journey would take me, but on the course to find the One True Ring of weight loss and better health. Along the way I encountered the Orcs of Fast Food, faced The Ringwraiths of late night temptations, and crossed the Dead Marshes of fat and calories -- on a near daily basis. Some battles were difficult, and on some days, my soul was weary from the fight, but the goal was worth the journey.

So what's next? Well, I may have to make a trip to Paddingtons on Sunday, for starters, but I think the 50lb mark is next, which will put me at 208.2, and then since I'm so close, I might as well shoot for 200 lbs even, or 58 lbs, and then probably just need to round it off to 60 lbs, which may be the ultimate goal. I was really hoping to do 50 lbs in 3 months like Kyle from my original post, but I'm just not sure my body is made to lose that much that quickly...because it sure hasn't been from lack of trying that it's slowed down the way it has lately. But overall, I'll be satisfied with the progress in the end.

Much love and thanks to all who continue to encourage me on a day to day basis. And to those who have joined me along the way....the journey continues! You can do it!


p.s. - that puts SeagravesJ as the closest guess to the correct day with a guess of 4/25. 7 days away, but still closest. Starbucks for you!

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Day 73: Sherbet vs Sorbet

Update: 221.2 lbs, 37.0 lbs so far, 1.0 left to reach goal.

Wow, 1 lb left to my goal....should only take me about 3 weeks to burn that baby off.....

So, I have to say, I never knew there was actually a difference between sherbet and sorbet, but there is. And just in case there is anyone out there who is still confused, it is sherBET, not sherBERT. The 'bert' is handy for video games like Q-bert, or childrens television programming like Bert and Ernie, but it's not part of the tasty ice cream substitute...that's simply 'bet.' But I digress...

Thanks to C-Dub and K-biz (Cdubkbiz, or Kbizcdub...if they ever got personalized plates together) we now know that Sherbet typically has milk products in it, or at least some sort of fat product. All this time I thought it was kind of a non-milk option, because it sure doesn't taste like milk to me, but I see I was wrong. Sorbets however are typically ice based (as in Italian ice, or granitas) and apparently were the first iced dessert, introduced in Asia, then in the Middle East and Italy. (One other Uncle Paul tidbit for you...if you have trouble remembering how to spell desert or dessert, you can always remember that dessert -- the tasty treat -- is spelled with 2 of the letter S because you always want a second helping, or two scoops. All you budding teachers out there may want to put that tool in your belt for future use in melding the young minds of our country.)

I also have always thought of sorbets as being purely fruit based, but after experiencing chocolate sorbet last night, once again, I now know better. Chocolate and raspberry sorbet together make a fine, milk free treat, keeping you light on your feet and agile for a few runs of "Mother" and "Rock and Roll Hoochie Coo."


Monday, April 16, 2007

Day 72: Plastic Pizza

Update: 222.0 lbs, 36.2 lbs so far, 1.8 left to reach goal.

Back down to the pre-retreat weight today...I can't believe how long it's taking for these last few to come off. Makes me a little nervous about setting that goal for the next 20 lbs...could be 10-20 years to get that going....

I'm always amazed by what items become our kid's favorite toys. This ugly little slice of plastic pizza has become my two-year old's latest object of obsession. I don't even know where it came from, or how long he has had it, but all of a sudden it goes with him everywhere. Heading to church....need my pizza. Moving to another room....gotta take my pizza. Wake up in the middle of the night....Dad, where's my pizza?

This little plastic pizza has even made for some good laughs. Last night, when some kids were struggling to get through their workshop presentation at church, our rugrat ran across the presentation area, throwing this up in the air right in front of them. We were already laughing from Kent and Ty's interpretation of 'Manners for Dummies,' and this just completed the whole scene.

Now I could get all philosophical here and say something like "we all have our plastic pizzas in life," or "it's amazing how some of us settle for plastic pizza in life when we could have the real thing," and if I was preparing a lesson, I might just do that. But today, I'm just not that deep. All I really have to say is that at 1 in the morning, when the kid has finally fallen back asleep, snuggling that ugly plastic actually just makes me hungry.


Sunday, April 15, 2007

Day 71: Crazy Sunday Post

Update: 222.4 lbs, 35.8 lbs so far, 2.4 left to reach goal.

Just a few minutes this morning before we have to run off to church. This weekend was GREAT -- really good times with the staff eating, playing guitar hero, sharing, laughing, throwing stuff at each other, discussing, eating, more guitar hero, and generally just enjoying time together. We had a great time Saturday being challenged, and the weather was good for spring time at the coast. No time to hit the beach, but still a great, super-fast trip over, in my books.

While I didn't go hog-wild, we did have tons of snacks and food for our trip. We mixed in some assorted good stuff like rice cakes and fruit, so there were good options - but pizza on Friday night, and some quacamole on Saturday (between breakfast and lunch) were a little tempting, so I did partake in both, which probably shot me up over my calorie count for each day. I thought about being a stickler on my calories this weekend, since I'd been going strong for 69 days, but then decided to just enjoy the time, without going crazy. Having been feeling like crapadoodie for the past two weeks, I figured it was ok to relax a bit, and not worry too much.

Back to the serious work today. Thank you to all the staff who were able to come this weekend. I appreciate all you do, and love to spend time with you guys!