New Eating Habits

I have tried many different philosophies of eating. I really like the fruitarian diet. Gandhi was a fruitarian the last few years of his life. He also experimented with diet. What I learned the year or so I was a fruitarian is that people are not ready for  what is viewed as an extreme diet. There are lots of people who are fruitarian and there are forums where people can learn about it. Many people have overcome many problems, like eating disorders, and major illnesses, by changing to a high fruit diet. But I would guestimate that 90% of people will not try it, too extreme.

I want to help people be healthier, that’s why this website exists, so what can I share that will work? Well, I really believe teaching balance and portion control will do it. Everyone already believes a balanced diet and proper portions will work. What keeps people from doing this? I think it is too many fad diets, too many companies selling their food, etc. Beachbody has a program called 21 Day Fix. This program has some accessible exercising with a simple eating plan. You can eat the foods you already have and already know you should eat. The picture above illustrates how it works. If it fits in the containers, you eat it, if it doesn’t you save it for tomorrow.

Today is Day 5 of me being on the program. If you have been following me you know that I have been on a anti-candida diet. Today is my first day after the diet. I can eat “normally” again. I am rejoining the “normal” eating world with the 21 Day Fix eating program. Candida has influenced my eating for many years, now that it is gone, or at least under control, I can choose what and how much I eat. I choose this program to help me with this. It is day five and that means this is the fifth day of me following the exercising, but it is the first day of me following the diet. I am so excited to be able to eat rice and fruit again. For breakfast I had my Vegan Chocolate Shakeology. My mid morning snack will be rice and homemade kimchi. My diet is over, but for the next week or so I will be taking copious amounts of probiotics and eating as much fermented foods as I can. My gut is healed, and now I need to grow the beneficial bacteria needed for a healthy gut. I’ll write more about my experience later. Thanks for reading, here’s to your health!

Yeast Overgrowth Cure Day 11

This picture is the vegan kimchi I made. I need to eat more fermented food for my gut health and I have made this recipe once before. Kimchi is tasty and very beneficial. I have almost a gallon fermenting and it will be ready for me to start eating next week. It has to ferment for about 5 days. The guy who gave me the recipe said he thought 14 days was best, but he usually couldn’t wait that long to chow down.

So I have made it to day 11 of almost zero carbs. It took be about 7 days to have energy again. The first day I had energy I worked until my legs were sore. My being lethargic for so long has resulted in me being out of shape.

I learned that there is a 21 Day Fix challenge group starting Monday (11/11). I have to stay on this no carb anti-yeast diet until 1/14. I think I can do some exercising on this no carb thing. I was thinking about ending it a few days early, but I better stay on it, just to make sure. I do have a lunch with some colleagues on Tuesday, so I may not do so well that day.

All in all this hasn’t been too bad of an experience. I’ve eaten lots of veggies, some I haven’t had in a while. I typically have 3 to 4 types of nuts with me at all times. Lunches have gotten simpler. I think the portions part of the 21 Day Fix will be very easy after what I’ve been doing.

Those first few days without energy I would be longing to go to bed around 7pm. Now that energy is back in my life I am able to function later again. I’m going to enjoy this new and improved gut.

Me and My Gut

I’ve been working on this post for a while…I have had intestinal challenges most of my life. About 14 years ago I started having some serious issues. I was always ill and run down and I didn’t know what to do. A naturopath was recommended to me and I figured I had nothing to lose. He diagnosed me with candida and started treatment. After a few treatments, I could eat food again, I wasn’t allergic to everything.

What caused this candida problem? I was in Africa for 6 months taking a malaria prophylactic that was an anti-biotic. I took this mild anti-biotic every day for some time. I did not realize that the human body has something on the order of 10 times more beneficial bacteria than it has human cells. Someone said we are bacteria-sapiens. So I killed off all this good bacteria in my gut and the candida was left unchecked and took over.

My naturopath told me that I may need a “tune up” every once in a while. I when in a couple of times, but when I became a low fat, raw vegan, I found new health. It was an amazingly healthful year. After that year, I was tired of not being able to join others at restaurants, so I just became a vegan. I was still enjoying good health, even if not quite as great.

Fast forward a bit and I find myself at a high-stress job where alcohol often flowed freely. I learned to drink. I went from two or three drinks a year to an average of one a day.  I began thinking that was a bit much and cut back. Did you know that alcohol kills bacteria? So here I am at a not high stress job, where alcohol is not as popular and my energy begins to decline, and I begin to feel depressed. Depressed, I have a great job.

After some thinking and testing, I realize that it is probably candida…again. I took a class from the School of Natural healing, I still want to write more about it here. In that class I was introduced to Dr. Christopher’s Natural Protocol for Systemic Yeast Overgrowth & Leaky Gut Syndrome. You see, candida takes over and destroys the gut. I don’t believe they destroyed part was addressed by my naturopath.

Dr. Christopher’s method is like nuking the candida. It is a 20 day regimen where you only eat vegetables, nuts, seeds and sprouted legumes. First two days is for seriously killing candida using Dr. Christopher’s formula called Intestinal Sweep. The next 14 is for healing the intestinal lining using his Soothing Digestion. Two more days of Intestinal Sweep, then its lots of probiotics and fermented foods. You can read more about it the above link.

I am on day 6 of this. They say the first 5 or so days of ketosis is the worst. I am feeling better today, but it is still early.

So if you wondered why I have not been posting much, it has been my energy level. I’m feeling a little better today. Here’s to a new year!

Why Be a Vegan

A little background on me. I was born and reared in the deep South. I ate whatever I could get my hands on. I remember setting and achieving my goal of eating an entire bag of spicy pork rinds in one sitting without any water. As an adult I did little better. In college I once took one of those food challenges at a restaurant. It was three 1/3 pound hamburger patties with bacon and I don’t even remember what else, and a pound of fries. I did it and received the prize. On business trips I would often eat medium rare prime rib, and not a small one mind you.

I want to take some time to encourage you to explore a vegetarian/vegan diet. There are some benefits I have experienced that may interest you.

A few months after I got married I noticed that my pants were quickly not fitting me. My wife and I joined a gym. We lost some weight and I discovered I had a passion for running. I recall a cholesterol screening where they said I needed to exercise more, I think the score was 220. At this point I was running 40 miles per week and when I told the healthcare practitioner this the response was, “Well, just think how bad it would be if you did not exercise.” Not comforting.

This wasn’t comforting, but what was I to do? I put this to the back of my mind, but so was the information of my ancestors’s demise. I saw much cardiovascular disease. Well, all I knew to do was to keep exercising. I even saw where often times cholesterol was hereditary. I pushed all these thought away and just exercised.

About 5 years ago I was researching minimalist footwear. I saw many people with this type of footwear also were vegan or raw vegan. This seemed odd to me. I mean you need to eat meat to get your protein, right? I did some more research and my wife told me about a 7 day green smoothie challenge. Alright, I can do that. I mean the worst that happens is I go back to eating meat and everything else at the end of 7 days, or sooner if the need arises. Well, at the end of the challenge I was sold. I was feeling better than I ever thought I could. I mean, I did not even know I was feeling bad. All that toxic load from years of eating all kinds of things were being corrected. I detoxed and lost a crazy amount of weight. I may post that write-up for a future blog.

I was a low fat raw vegan for about a year. This is the 80/10/10 diet that Dr. Graham wrote about. It did some great things, but the social limitations were tough. So I slowly went to about 40% raw and stayed vegan. Vegan, with some occasional fish and chip just because, is how I have been now for a few years.

My cholesterol was checked a few months ago. It was 162. 162! The studies I read said there is no cases of cardiovascular disease in people with a score of less than 180. I think I achieved a major goal.

So why be a vegetarian or a vegan? Lower cholesterol is one reason. There are others. Meat is calorie dense. Many cultures ate meat primarily in the winter because other foods were not available. Think Eskimos. We have a variety of food and can buy almost anything we want any time of year. This is because most food is industrialized. Most the meat in the industrial food supply is highly toxic. I will be the first to admit that there does exist meat that is good for you. But you would have to find a source like Polyface Farms to achieve that level. It is much easier for most of us to just be a vegetarian or a vegan. I do know people who have family who run a cattle ranch and they realize a high quality of meat. I’ll take this time to plug my other website, Chehalem Permaculture. I’ve met Joel Salatin, see picture on other website, and have some knowledge on how to raise high quality food. Not just animals. When I do get to the point I can create my own food supply I may no longer be a vegan. But until I achieve that utopia, I remain a vegan. Even in that utopia, I would limit my meat to a small amount. That could be another post altogether.

So do some research and strike up a conversation. I truly enjoy discussing diet. If you will bear with me I’ll do one more plug. Nutrition is an important thing to me. This is why I have joined with Beachbody and sing the praises of Shakeology. I’ve studied nutrition for over 10 years. A runner and a vegan need to know a little about food.

If you aren’t satisfied with your wellness, contact me. I know more than Beachbody and would be happy to help you think through options. Let’s get a conversation going so that we can accomplish one of the reason I joined Beachbody, eliminate obesity.

Reasons Why

Why do you exercise? Or maybe I should ask, why do you not exercise? I heard Chalene Johnson say that exercise is what you do when you love yourself. Do you love yourself enough to exercise? How about your children? Many people I have met started taking time to exercise not so much for themselves, but for their children. So that they would have the energy to be there and share experiences with their children.

Late afternoon tomorrow, my family and I will go camping. I have an exercise program that I am in the middle of. So here will the deciding factor as to how determined I am to stick with this program. I will have every excuse to not do it. I will be walking a lot, I don’t believe there is an inside facility to use. So I’ll be exercising in the somewhat open space. I’ve done every workout once so I have an idea how to do them. So that shouldn’t be too embarrassing. But will I get up in the morning and actually press play? I have my Facebook friends I’ve been reporting to. I’ve talked about every exercise beginning the second week. I must keep that up. I must make this transformation work. I must prove to myself and others that this can be done. This is hard work, but it is doable. You just have to want it. You have to decide to do it, commit to doing it, and then you will succeed. That is the tagline of Beachbody, Decide. Commit. Succeed. I want to succeed. I want to no longer be that guy who is in OK shape, but usually has a bit of a belly. That guy who keeps his waist size right around the at risk size for heart disease. I want to be far away from all of those indicators. I want to be able to play with my great-grandchildren. I want to be a 90 year old who helps the 70 year olds in the assisted living and refers to them as kid. I want to be that guy. I want exceptional health.

I can get into so much here, this is why I changed my eating from medium prime rib to vegan. This is why I study theology. This is why I became a Beachbody coach.  Health now and in the future is what is driving me to do many of the things I do. I think it was the Rolling Stones who said, “If we had known we would live this long, we would have taken better care of our bodies.” This is a good lesson. I’m planning to live a long time. If I die tomorrow, it will all be OK. I know that health and fitness may not add years to my life, but it will add life to my years. I need this fitness now to enjoy my children, and I want it in the future for their children and their children’s children.

Does anybody else have this kind of view of health?

Fitness Help

I know some of you want to lose weight and get in shape but exercising hurts and you may feel uncomfortable at the gym. Help is here! The 21 Day Fix is approachable, modifiable and done completely at home. The test groups for 21 Day Fix included fit people as well as people with 100+ pounds to lose, to be sure that anyone could be successful with this program. Did you catch that, ANYONE. This means you.

Afraid you will have to give up everything you like to eat? The 21 Day Fix Eating Plan shows you how to incorporate treats (like chocolate and wine) into the plan . . . and you can still lose weight.

Afraid the exercises will be too tough? There’s a modifier in every workout to show you how to take down the intensity while still getting awesome results.

This stuff works. A friend of mine used 21 Day Fix and lost 18 pounds. That’s right 18. There is even a guarantee if you don’t like the program you can return it in 30 days and get a refund. There is really nothing to lose but those extra pounds.

This is on SALE until the end of this month (7/31/15). Click on the banner or link above to take advantage of this sale.

Crazy Yesterday

Well I said that yesterday was a crazy day, and I meant it. So the highlights were: Morning exercise, Beachbody Super Sunday with a workout with Tony Horton. Then Frisbee with the kids that then broke out into an Ultimate game. It was me and the neighbor girls against 3 boys, well one is in his 20’s. Then some reading with my 3 year old.

I started the day with a difficult upper body exercise. Eccentric Upper. This exercise includes things like doing a push up where you go down slowly and push up fast. Pull ups, up fast down slow. I’m still doing modified pull ups, but I’m showing up and getting better.

After this 30 minutes of tough upper body exercise, I drank my Shakeology. I added the peanut butter, vanilla, and cashew milk. I drank that then helped with breakfast for the kids, and shared in the steel cut oatmeal. We had to get out the door, but not for church this time. We were heading to a quarterly meeting with Beachbody called Super Saturday. Oh, wait it wasn’t Saturday, it was Sunday. For some reason I have yet to learn, Portland meets on Sunday. Saturday would work much better for us, but since this was the first one we would be able to attend, we decided to go for it. Especially since the CEO Carl Daikeler AND fitness celebrity Tony Horton was going to be there. So off we go to drop off our kids with some wonderful friends and former neighbors. They weren’t skipping church, they meet in the evening. So as long as we are back in time, they are happy to help out.

Down the road we went to the Portland Convention Center were over 1,000 other coaches were gathering. We found my wife’s coach and stayed with her the rest of the time there. There were some wonderful transformation stories and some good Beachbody information. For instance, 21 Day Fix is on sale until the end of the month. I have to learn to be a better coach, I did not realize it was on sale. The CEO, Carl Daikeler, spoke for a while. He has a great personality and speaks with ease. I’ve worked for other companies where I wanted the CEO to take some basic public speaking class. Carl is dynamic without trying. It is probably natural to him. He reminded everyone that this business is about helping people and if someone comes into this business with any other intents, they will not be compatible and the system will reject them. This sounds great because that is one of the reasons I joined Beachbody, to help other people. This highly approachable way into exercise can help everybody. Carl also talked a little about the 30 day money back guarantee. I had not really noticed this before. But there is this amazing guarantee that even if you used all of the Shakeology, if you are not satisfied after 30 days simply return it and your money is refunded. That is a great guarantee. No risk. If you don’t get the results, return it.

After Carl spoke, we all picked up our chairs and moved them to the side. We then exited into the hallway where it was picture time. We were given the opportunity to have our pictures taken with Carl and Tony. After the picture I shook their hands. These two men are doing a lot to help other people in so many ways. I am excited to be working with them.

On to the exercise! If you are taking notes, this is my second exercise of the day. From what I gathered it was a modification of a P90X routine. I noticed a few differences from the P90X3. He had a nice warm up and we were off. Now this is a room that was just seating a little over 1,000 people, now about that some number were exercising. Any big movements could result in causing harm to a neighbor. So we were on the ground doing pushups and kicks. We were even doing some MMA moves. Talk about needing to be careful. We also did a good bit of work in plank. My abs are hurting just thinking about that work.

After the exercise was a drawing for door prizes. They were mainly T-shirts of the Beachbody programs. My wife won a ladies P90X3 T-shirt. I told her she should do P90X3 in the not too distant future.

With all these people we ran late. We thought about leaving before the drawings, but thought it wouldn’t take too long. We didn’t realize that they were going to do that many drawings and that a lot of numbers were called out for people who had left. So this took some time too. We probably should have left and gave our numbers to my wife’s coach.

We were now running late to pick up our kids from some wonderful friends who may be more than ready for us to have returned. We were also hungry because it was around 3:00 and breakfast was long gone. Note to self, bring more than a Lara Bar next time. We picked up our children, apologized to our friends, and took our kids home. Now lunch for us.

Our kids went down to play with the neighbors. We are all great friends. My wife and I went down there too to visit and help keep an eye on everyone. I brought my Frisbee to help entertain some kids, and to make sure I got my steps in. While we were throwing the Frisbee around a game of Ultimate broke out. I did not start it, a few of the kids did. We ended up with a good group, age range 6 up to me. This was now my third exercise. I thought I held on well, especially for my third exercise of the day.

Afterwards, I went up to the house to eat again and start taking kids home. My youngest came home with me and I asked him if we wanted to read a book. We read Goodnight Moon then a Thomas the Train book. He got board of the Thomas book and had me rea Goodnight Moon a few more times. It was a good close to a busy day.

Today I feel like I may be a little deficient on my calorie consumption. I’m still studying the 21 Day Fix containers. They are set up for omnivores and I am not. I want to understand them so I can do better with my eating, but also to help my wife and others. Portion control is a difficult thing, and a very important thing.

I will keep learning all I can and I am willing to help anyone who would like my help. Just contact me here, at Beachbody, or on Facebook. It doesn’t have to be a Beachbody program. I am using them because I believe in them and love the results I have seen in others and am seeing in myself.