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Archive for March, 2010

A Surprising Gain…

March 30, 2010 16 comments

Just a short post tonight, but something I had to share.  I had a doctor’s appointment today, and I had a surprising gain…in height!!!  I’ve been 5’10” for years, and today, I was 5’11”  (well – 5’10” and three/quarters – but the nurse said 5’11” dammit)!!!  It really doesn’t surprise me.

When I was over 300 pounds, I was literally weighted down, and I know I kind of slouched and probably had compressed my poor, aching spine with all that fat.  I even mentioned to my mom the other day that I felt taller recently when I’d reach for something on a high shelf, or when I was sitting at my desk at work or in my car.  So I don’t know if there’s scientific evidence for this or not, but I think as I’m losing weight I’m gaining height!  I’ll take that trade!  Good night, all.

NEXT: The Healthy Cookbook Reviews Continue with my review of Devin Alexander’s I Can’t Believe It’s Not Fattening!

Nutrition Monday: A Call to Action

March 29, 2010 11 comments


I'm Blogging National Nutrition Month

In honor of National Nutrition Month®, I’ve been devoting my Mondays in March to blogging on different nutrition topics.  For me, nutrition was the starting point of my reconstruction, and it remains the keystone of my efforts, joined in recent months by exercise.  These Nutrition Mondays have helped me personally refocus on nutrition, and I’ve enjoyed them so much that I’ve decided to make them a permanent (until I change my mind!) part of this blog!  So get ready for many more Nutrition Mondays to come.  There’s plenty for us to talk about, and if you have suggestions for a Nutrition Monday topic, send them my way!

This week, as 2010’s National Nutrition Month® comes to a close, I want to focus on a few policy and advocacy efforts where we can all make a difference as we attempt to change nutrition in this country!  I’m totally drinking Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution kool-aid (though I don’t think that stuff’s part of the Food Revolution…).  Here are three ways you can be a part of the change: Read more…

My First 5K! (Or…How I Gave Myself a Sleepless Night)

March 28, 2010 19 comments

As I mentioned yesterday, I went for a walk with a friend to get out and enjoy the beautiful spring day, catch up with her, and get myself back in the exercise mindset after a difficult week.  While we were on the walk, she mentioned a 5K race that was coming up in a couple of weeks, and she wondered if I’d like to do it.  It’s on April 17, and seeing that date, not even a month away, made me think pretty hard about that one.

I’ve been thinking it would be great to sign up for a short race for quite a while now, and her suggestion sent me into action.  April 17 seemed a little too soon since I’m just getting back in my exercise groove after a few health issues, so I did a search for 5K’s in my area, and I actually found one a week later (on April 24) that supports a cause I’m really passionate about, providing clean water in the developing world, so I signed up!  Here’s a video about the Water for the World Run:

Water for the World Run 2010 from Don Felice on Vimeo.

I know it’s only a week more to prepare, but there’s something about having a month that feels better to me than just having a few weeks.  I want to be able to run a fairly significant portion of the race, and I’m not sure I could do that by April 17 without pushing myself really hard, possibly too hard, leading up to it.  After signing up for the race last night, I had a very fitful, restless night’s sleep.  I dreamed much more than usual, and I’m pretty sure a few of the dreams involved running like hell to a) avoid being trampled by the people shooting out of the starting gate like little rockets in the video, and b) to not make a fool of myself by crawling across the finish line as cars were blowing their horns waiting for the road to be reopened to traffic.

I also want the race to be a real motivator for me, and I think doing it for charity will keep me a lot more motivated than just doing it for myself.  I’ve set a goal to raise $500 in support of the charities support by the run, and every little bit helps!  Just think if everyone who could give five dollars did, we’d raise a ton more money towards bringing clean water to developing countries than if we only depended on those who could give larger amounts.  And contaminated water is the #1 cause of death in the developing world, so it’s a problem that needs our attention desperately!  Personally, it will also keep me much more motivated to stick to my training program and finish this race knowing that you’re all behind me, financially if you’re able, and in moral support and cheerleading.  If you are interested in donating, you can click here to visit my fund raising page for the race.

Have a fantastic Palm Sunday!

Weekly Weigh In: Back in the Groove!

March 27, 2010 11 comments

Today was my weekly weigh in, and after last week, there was no pleading with the scale to shave off an extra ounce or two.  Just one step on the scale, and one step off.  (Okay, TWO, but you gotta double-check once, right???)  Since I had to replace my scales, the weights are a little different, so it’s hard to know exactly what I lost this week, but it’s right at 1 pound, I believe.  When my scales broke last Saturday, I had weighed in at 249.5 pounds.  The new scales weigh me about 7.5 pounds heavier than the old ones as best I can figure  (BAHHHHH…).  This morning I was at 256.0 on the new scales, so about 248.5 on the old ones, or one pound down, for a total loss of 52 pounds now!!!  I’m very happy to continue losing, even if I have to readjust to the readings on the new scale.  From here on out, I’ll just report the new scale numbers, along with my total weight lost.

Not only do I have my new scales, but I’m back in the groove with exercise, too.  My pain is gone, and I went for a 2.5 mile walk in the park with a friend this morning.  It was a fairly leisurely walk, but it felt so great to get outside and MOVE on a beautiful spring day after being restricted by the doc for the past week!  This afternoon I’m planning to burn some more serious calories, either on the treadmill or with some Wii Fit boxing.  I’m even contemplating signing up for Read more…

Karma: I Hate You…

March 25, 2010 7 comments

Soooo…..  I’ve been kind of sick this week.  It’s not something I’ll be blogging about in detail (trust me – I’ll spare you), except to say, remember the post where I wrote about being kicked out of the ER for laughing at my dad’s rather humorous problem?  Well apparently it’s freakin’ genetic.  And painful as hell.  Crap.

I’ve been recovering, and I’m finally feeling almost up to snuff again after a few days laying low, but the doc has me off of exercise, both cardio and strength training, until I’m pain free.  I’m hopeful that will be this weekend, but I just have to wait and see.  Anyhow, right after my two consecutive back injuries greatly reduced my strength training routine, this really isn’t what I wanted to hear.  But I’ve been a good little patient, and I’ve avoided Read more…

Reviewing Ellie Krieger's The Food You Crave

March 24, 2010 10 comments

A couple of weeks ago, I committed to cook dinner once a week from one of the following cookbooks and then to report back here as to whether the cookbook was any good, in my humble opinion.

After making the low calorie black bean brownies from Rocco Dispirito’s Now Eat This!, I was a little gun shy about jumping into these healthy cookbooks again.  I still can’t believe that one’s on the NY Times bestseller list – to each his/her own, I guess.  But today, my faith in healthy cookbooks was not just restored, but I think I may have found the holy grail of healthy eating cookbooks – Ellie Krieger’s The Food You Crave.  Ellie also has a new book out (So Easy), but The Food You Crave is now a couple of years old and has received a couple of awards, including a coveted James Beard award.  You may also recognize Ellie Krieger from her Food Network show, Healthy Appetite.  I’ve seen the show a few times, but I’ve never really watched it as much as some of the other shows on the Food Network (which may explain why I’m now on this weight loss journey!).  Anyhow, around the time I was assembling the list of healthy cookbooks I’d review as part of this series, my nutritionist Rachel told me about The Food You Crave, and I added it to the list.

I’m sure glad I did!  I’ve been thumbing through the book for a week or so now, and first, it’s just really well done as a cookbook.  The book is easy to navigate and has beautiful photography, plus a number of good pages that provide tips for healthy eating and quick ideas for things like simple breakfasts, what to have for lunch, etc.  It’s really well-done.  And the food itself is Read more…

Nutrition Monday: Review of Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution

March 22, 2010 14 comments

One rather unexpected, yet extremely positive, side effect of my efforts to reconstruct my life, and particularly my health, at thirty, has been a passion that I’m developing for promoting healthier eating and living, particularly among the nation’s youth.  As a nation, we’ve got to stop ignoring food as a major contributor to our health outcomes, and realize that we really are what we eat!  Trash in, trash out.  It seems that a groundswell is building to begin seriously taking on these problems in a meaningful way.  Just a few weeks ago, we learned that First Lady Michelle Obama was making childhood obesity a keystone platform of her tenure.  This week, we received what is truly a National Nutrition Month® gift from celebrity chef Jamie Oliver and Ryan Seacrest Productions – the ABC series Food Revolution.

I truly want you to watch this show.  Truly.  ABC has put the first episode on Hulu, and I’ve embedded a link to the hulu video below (this video totally belongs to ABC, Ryan Seacrest Productions, Hulu, etc., and is totally here at their mercy.  I’m just embedding the Hulu version here pursuant to what Hulu allows in terms of sharing because I think this show is incredible, and I want you to watch it on ABC, visit the show’s various websites, and support this amazing program so it sticks around!).

Jamie’s passion, compassion, and genuine concern is so evident in this program.  He doesn’t think obese people are ignorant, stupid, or dumb.  He truly understands that we have to change our culture to change our collective eating habits, and our individual lives.  He’s beginning in Huntington, West Virginia, where he’s taking on families, restaurants, and perhaps most importantly (and entertainingly), a school cafeteria, where he uncovers the bureaucratic struggles that go into transforming school lunches in the United States, and the need to update our nutritional standards and norms. You can also sign a petition that Jamie is pulling together as part of his efforts to take these issues to the President and First Lady for support by clicking on this link.

Kudos to Jamie, who is the star of the show, but also to producer Ryan Seacrest and Ryan Seacrest Productions, for having the courage to take on these issues.  In the random ramblings category, Ryan Seacrest grew up only a few miles from me in the northern suburbs of Atlanta, and the local press has shown more than a few pictures of him as an overweight teenager.  I guess that’s part of why I personally have always found him pretty easy to relate to, and I’m very proud to see a formerly overweight kid from my part of the world doing well career-wise and making efforts to address our growing crisis of obesity.  There was a sneak peek of the first episode last night (but it was interrupted by an ABC News Special Report on the passage of the Health Care Reform Bill here in the east), and it slides into its regular Friday evening time slot on ABC later this week.  Hope you enjoy!