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11 Tips to Maintain Fitness and Nutrition During the Winter*

screenshot_20181107-124714~28827847745591691726..jpgAs the long, dark days of Winter and numerous holidays loom in the distance, we need to recommit to health and nutrition.  This time of year derails many people in their quest for health. The shortened daylight hours for outdoors activities and all the festivities can crowd health initiatives unless we prepare. Here are 11 tips for thriving during this time.  *This article has been adapted from our AFPA curriculum for certification of Nutrition and Wellness coaching.

  1. Plan for decreased activity.  Be aware of how these changes may interfere with normal schedules and be prepared to get creative with your pursuit of activity.
  2. Write your “Why”, whatever it is. It may be a long standing health concern or sheer fun, such as being able to take a cruise and feel confident in our swimsuit.  Whatever it is, writing it increases your motivation.
  3. Try new things like an exercise routine or recipes in the kitchen.  This will reinvigorate your fitness agenda and keep you motivated.
  4. Try “movement snacks”, small bits of time to be more active, when your regular routine is derailed altogether.  Park farther away, the stairs…and run them, lunge down hallways, do heel raises while washing dishes.
  5. Plan for snow days with a full range of “fitness snacks” and quick recipes with ingredients on hand.
  6. Get some outdoor gear, snow pants and warm layers.  Rent or borrow snow shoes, cross-country skies, skates or sleds.  Just hiking through snow can be a killer workout.
  7.  Know your nutrition obstacles such as traditional desserts, rich pasta dishes and office pastries and carry food that will help you attain the goal that you desire.
  8. Have a go-to healthy holiday dish that you take to social events and have at home.
  9.  Eat healthy carbs. They balance out your serotonin and create a better mood.
  10. Boost your immune system.  Get enough sleep.  Avoid alcohol. Eat fermented foods.  Drink water.
  11. Prep for active travel.  Stay in motels that have an exercise room and walk everywhere that you can.

Winter does not have to mean weight gain.  Plan your work and work your plan. Get it done.  Biceps don’t grow on trees. ;-*

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Holiday Stress Reliever


screenshot_20181115-113038~26373037549471688760..jpgDanger

There is a unique type of stress that accompanies this time of year.  Everywhere that we look we are reminded of how wonderful the holidays are to everyone.  If we don’t have warm, fuzzy feelings centered around these days then we not only feel like we’re missing something, we also feel like we’re on the outside looking in.  This is akin to “depersonalization”, where we may have the sensation of observing ourselves from outside the body or have a sense that our surroundings aren’t real. This feeling of isolation, of being lonely in a crowded room can escalate into full blown mental illness.  Many people commit suicide this time of year.  See a doctor if you have thoughts of self harm.

Be Pro-Active

The worst thing that we can do is nothing.  If we don’t take active steps to be healthy during periods of high stress, the stress will win.  Our health and relationships will suffer.  Our performance on our jobs will most likely deteriorate. The psychological and financial strain of these highly commercialized days becomes bigger than our ability to make rational decisions and rash decisions are made instead.  Once major changes are put into play, the uncertainty of the outcomes of those decisions impact our lives and thinking even more.  A self destructive cycle has begun and self harm becomes a reality, if only in the form of binge drinking or eating.  All the drama that we see played out around us during this time is the result of bad small decisions snowballing into bad big decisions.

Steps To Take

There are a few things that we can do for ourselves that will increase our chances of surviving this season healthy and intact. [1]

1-Forget perfection.  This is the main problem with the holidays for many.  It doesn’t matter what you think is the ideal holiday.  Take what you have and work with it.  It WON”T BE PERFECT.  Get used to it.

2-Quit worrying already. This is not the same as perfectionism.  It’s a morbid dread that something terrible is going to happen.  Odds are, it won’t.  Run with the odds.

3-Be grateful.  Look around…or inside…there’s something to be grateful for.  Gratitude changes our perspective of the world.  Instead of lamenting that you don’t have enough money to buy everyone the perfect gift, be thankful that you do have food for them and that you have people who care about you in your life.

4- Just say “NO!” Don’t try to do too much, period.

5- Get rejuvenating exercise.  Walk outside without a headset.

6-Detox from stimulation.  Keep your environment quiet.  Make holiday lights glow softly instead of flash and put down that technology for a while.

7-Create new traditions.  Old traditions can bring back painful memories.  Do something different.

8-Eat healthy and limit alcohol, or better yet, avoid it entirely.

9-Get plenty of sleep.

10-Remember, this too will pass.  Spring is on the way.

11- Turn ALL the lights on.  While natural sunlight has the best anti-depressant effect, any light can make a difference during this dark time.  Brighten up your world.

My Demon

I fought perfectionism for many years during this time.  It’s true buzz-kill.  I have had to realize that a perfect holiday was not going to happen.  I’m thinking about starting some new traditions where perfectionism is not even an option.  Hiking in the Smokies or parasailing in the Caribbean are not perfect friendly, but they sure are fun.  I’m looking into such pastimes for the season.

Pain

I have known people who had painful memories of the holidays.  Again, create new traditions and exorcise the demons of the past.

Blaze your own trail through these days with good nutrition and healthy activities.  Make these days yours, always remembering, it only comes once in a year.  Be grateful. ;-*

[1] https://psychcentral.com/lib/the-importance-of-self-care-during-the-holidays/screenshot_20181025-125040~2161285835..jpg

 

 

Requested

Special Request By Special Reader

I have been asked to write an article about HRT, hormone replacement therapy, by one of our loyal readers. I must say up front, and repeatedly, see your doctor. I am not a physician. I can not diagnose or treat any medical condition. I will offer information that is commonly available and I will also share my experience with HRT. This could turn into comedy.

Disclaimer and “Just the Facts”

Let’s cover the facts first and then we will get to the entertainment. According to WebMD, the benefits are that HRT will give most women relief from night sweats and hot flashes and may help in preventing osteoporosis, thus lessening the chance of a broken bone later in life. According to this same source, the risks of combined estrogen and progesterone therapy include the possibility of raising your risk of heart attack, blood clots, breast cancer and stroke. The real kicker here in this discussion is that there are many forms and combinations of HRT, so again, see your doctor. It is possible, if you have a great doctor that he/she will hit on the perfect HRT for you. This was not my experience.

Into the Wild

I was complaining of various female maladies that seemed to be brought on by a lack of proper hormones and a friend of mine suggested that I try HRT…and I did. Mind you, I did not go to a reputable gynecologist and ask his/her advice. I strutted into my local General Practitioner’s doctor’s office, who was known for writing whatever prescription you asked for, and asked for a specific brand of HRT. With little ado, he gave it to me. Oh my, I thought, this stuff is gonna be great! I’m gonna be “normal” again, I thought. Well, for starters, I have no idea what made me think that… can’t say that I’ve ever been “normal”, whatever that is…and furthermore, I was living in hell. It was gonna take more than a pill to fix that. More on that later… I wrote previously about how menopause completely erased my personality. I was an empty shell for a season. I was in this desperate state when I thought that I’d found the answer. I would have tried anything to ease the suffering of that emptiness. Little did I know that there is a reason why it’s really best for a physician who knows all about you to make this decision. I should have known. I’m a nurse and a bona fide health freak but I wanted to feel different, FAST! and I did. Again, this is merely my experience. See your doctor. HRT may be great for you. It was God to my friend. It was Satan to me.

It Begins

I got that script filled ASAP and took my medicine, anxiously awaiting the “rush” of hormones. Well, nothing happened, which is logical. Most legal medicines have to build up in our bloodstreams before we actually “feel” them. Hell, I just wanted to feel anything, good, bad or ugly. It didn’t matter. I just wanted to know that I was not freakin’ dead.

The Joy of The Lord

I mainly wanted a return of joy in my life. I had come to the point that there was none and puh-leese… don’t interject here that joy comes from the Lord, yes, I know that. I’ve had every position that you can name in church and done it all, and me and Jesus are one on one. He sustains me. This is NOT spiritual. This is physical, emotional, psychological and mental but it is absolutely not spiritual and if you try to treat it that way, you won’t get the help that you need. I’m not a doctor, but I am saved and believe me, your salvation will sustain you but it won’t make you contented in this time so don’t even go there. HRT did not increase my joy. It made me a raging lunatic at times. Raging lunatics aren’t usually real happy. I kept taking it. I wanted those “mones”.

What Was THAT?!?

I slammed so many doors while I was on that stuff that I still have torn up things. I slammed a steel security door so hard that to this day, the doorknob is jiggly. I slammed the doors on the car that I had then so hard that my car began to rattle…and it was a new car… Whenever I entered into an argument, I could feel the blood rush to my face and I would get dizzy. I was angry. Oh well, I felt something, right? The HRT that I was taking was a combination of estrogen and testosterone. Apparently I didn’t need the testosterone. And to top it all off, I had terrible food cravings just like PMS gives you. Damn, I hadn’t had those in years. Oh, this was an improvement… I stood at the kitchen counter and polished off cartons of ice cream and bags of nacho cheese tortilla chips, with salsa…and velveeta…and sour cream. I gained about 15# pretty quickly and still wouldn’t quit those pills.

Epiphany

HRT is supposed to help insomnia but the opposite was true for me. I was wild as a bat all night long. One night I couldn’t sleep, even though I had asked my doctor for sleeping pills and took them, and I cried and prayed all night. By daylight I realized that none of those pills had fixed my problem. They seemed to have made it worse. I threw them away and never regretted that decision.

The Way

I have always been a health freak and I knew that a healthy diet, vigorous exercise and quality sleep could stabilize and repair a lot of things. At this point I was desperate enough to use common sense and give it a go. I went back to Weight Watcher’s, lost the weight, which by now was 45#, and walked deeper and deeper into healthy living. I had been on Maintenance for a year or so when I discovered David’s Way. Part of The Way is stress reduction, which David refers to as “making your world small, getting rid of clutter, all kinds of clutter”. I was under way too much stress and I got out of the hell that I was living in and recreated my life. This Methodology has worked for me. I have more personality than ever. Life is rich. I am the strongest that I’ve ever been. I work a hard, full-time job by choice. I play hard. Life is good. David’s Way is a holistic lifestyle that turns all focus on health and wellness. I discovered an interesting fact about female hormones. Estrogen is not only made in the ovaries which try to bail somewhere around 50. It’s also made in the adrenal glands. Stress can overtax the adrenals to the point of making them ineffective which is known as adrenal burn-out which is a life-threatening condition. It can be fatal. Stress can take the last bit of estrogen from you…Since I fixed my life, I’m more vital than I’ve ever been. I’ve always had a very stressful life, until now. David’s Way has changed that. Everything that I wanted from those little pills has been given to me by living healthy. I feel better than I did at 21 and I take no medication whatsoever. I’m 62. What will Davis’s Way do for you? I can’t answer that. I only know what it has done for me. I am not a doctor. I cannot diagnose or treat any medical condition.

Winners

The one who seeks for the Truth shall be blessed. The one who delights in discovering the right way will be unstoppable, like a tree that is planted beside a great river, his fruit will multiply. Continually pursue Truth and be strong. Before you know it, you’ll be standing tall, blessed beyond measure and fulfilled. “Life is a beautiful Journey. Enjoy the ride.”

;-*

Injury Recovery

Prayers for our faithful reader

We at David’s Way have a loyal reader who is going through a tough time recovering from some serious knee issues which has required a few medical procedures which have yet to provide the relief and healing where her doctor is able to release her for physical exercise involving the lower body. In the interest of privacy, I can not, nor would I divulge this wonderful individuals name, but you know who you are and know that you are in my thoughts and prayers for a full recovery. I know how rough it can be when all appears bleak, as if life will never return to normal again. I know personally the mental anguish of constant pain and suffering from a debilitating injury and how it can weigh on the soul, which is why I am penning this article in the hopes it gives you inspiration to keep pushing on towards recovery even during the toughest of moments.

My Injury and Recovery

In 2008 I re-enlisted into the military after being out for 11 years. I found out the Army National Guard would bring me back in at my previous Navy rank, and I jumped on the chance to finish my career. I had lost my Navy career during the force reductions in 1997 and this was a matter of remedying unfinished business. The military had been my life.

I was employed at this time as a concrete driver for a local ready mix company and really enjoyed my job and the great guys I was working with. Every day as a concrete hauler brings different challenges in getting your truck into locations in order to get the job done. I loved the challenge as much as I loved working outside year round. I will take this life over a cubicle or factory job any day, Life was going good, I had a great job, I was in great physical condition and being back in the service was bringing me a sense of being fulfilled.

Then Disaster Struck

Towards the end of July 2009 I was rolling back into our concrete plant from a pour when our plant operator came to me in a panic. Our main water line which feeds the plant had come apart at a union and had to be fixed as quickly as possible. Water is the life blood of a concrete plant and we had another big pour coming in about an hour. This water main had to be fixed expeditiously or we would miss providing concrete to a multi-million dollar construction project this day. The sense of urgency was so thick in the air you could feel it. We had to get the plant back up and running, no ifs and or buts. We had to make our concrete delivery happen.

The water main was in a deep pit. The line was 3 1/2 inch copper tube which came straight up to a 90 degree elbow, then lead to a coupling about 6 inches over, then another 90 degree coupling where the tubing went straight back down. This repair took being able to pull the tubes close enough together in order to rejoin the sections with a new coupling. The problem we had was we had nothing in which to pull the sections together, so it had to be done by hand. The sections were spread enough that the coupling would not just simply go back into place. Therefore, I jumped down in the pit, and pulled on one side with all my might in order to get the sections together. I was pulling hard, while my body was somewhat twisted, when I lost my grip which caused me to fall on my rear against the concrete edge of the pit. This hurt like hell, but we still ended up getting the job done. We got the big pour complete but the end result of this fall was a significant spinal injury.

Doc, my Leg Hurts

The next day after my fall in that pit, I hurt so bad I had to call in sick to work. I was in bad pain and thought being pretty tough, I would get over it and return in a day. The next work day, I made it through the day but with terrible spasms in my right leg. Being August, my first assumption, as well as that of my supervisor, was that I was maybe low on potassium and or dehydrated. I drank a lot of water the rest of the day and the next morning my leg pain had gotten so bad that I decided to go to the doctor to get checked out. I was still assuming the muscles knotting up on me was a result of potassium deficiency combined with dehydration, yet I had never had these kind of cramps last so long. Literally, you could see my leg muscles tensing into excruciating knots over and over.

I vividly remember the doctor telling me I had a spinal problem and me looking at her and asking if she had not heard me say it was my leg that was giving me trouble. In just as snarky of a voice as I had used on her, she informed me that she had heard me and that my leg problem was a spinal issue. I was then told I could not work until we knew how bad it was and then an MRI was ordered. I actually got in to one the next day.

About a week later, I learned that I had severely ruptured the disk at L5 S1. In the fall, I had squished the disk like a jelly doughnut and it was encapsulating my sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve is the largest nerve in the human body and is intertwined through the piriformis muscle which is located deep in the buttock, behind the gluteus maximus. It runs diagonally from the lower spine to the upper surface of the femur, with the sciatic nerve running underneath or through the muscle. The piriformis muscle helps the hip rotate, turning the leg and foot outward which turned into a huge problem for me as my right foot want to drag and trail with every step I would take.

Treatments

The first line of treatment was my doctor placed me on opiate pain relievers and muscle relaxers and referred me to a pain specialist who put me through a three shot series of corticosteroid injections into my spine in the hope the disk material would retract enough to bring me comfort. The pain specialist upon doing the first image guided lumbar epidural corticosteroid injection said by the appearance in the CT scan during the procedure that he did not believe the injections were going to help, but that no neurosurgeon would touch me until I had been through them. And he was correct. I received the third injection in October and he referred me to my neurosurgeon.

November 7th 2009, I underwent spinal surgery and then 2 months of physical therapy about 6 weeks later. Between surgery and physical therapy, my 12 weeks of FMLA with my job ran out and I was promptly fired when I could not return to work. By January 2010, I was flat broke and my home was going into foreclosure. February 2010, I declared Chapter 13 bankruptcy when not only was my home going into foreclosure, but my car which was damn near paid for was in danger of being repossessed one month before my final payment was due. Life was looking pretty bleak at this point. I was about to lose everything, still had pain issues with my sciatic nerve and only able to work part time at a job that required more out of me physically than my physicians would have allowed. I was also eating oxycodone like they were candy at this point in order to escape the pain. And, I was still having to learn to walk normal again as my right foot wanted to drag and trail with every step I took if I did not make a very conscious effort to make it track like it was supposed to. Literally, from the time of my injury, it took me a year before I was able to walk normal again without having to think about my right foot and leg.

Recovery

By late July 2010, I was almost normal with my gait despite still suffering severe and chronic sciatic pain. I had finally got off the opiates after about a year and went through opiate withdrawals at home. They are every bit as bad as you may have ever heard. Sick and achy feeling like you want to die, then one day you feel better. I had considered getting a TENS Unit implant for the pain, but it was no guarantee to be fully successful so I opted to learn to live with the pain with no medicines at all, nor the TENS Unit. Being as I wanted to get my life back to normal, I began weight training again, but only with an empty 45 lb Olympic barbell for all my lifts. I began adding 5 pounds to my barbell every workout and struggled with squats, dead lifts and bench press in getting proper form. Yes, the bench press was an issue because using any leg drive would put pressure on the damaged sciatic nerve which had scarred over. This damage and scarring was confirmed through MRI, and will be a source of pain for the rest of my life.

Some would, and did call me crazy for resuming my weight training, especially with squats and dead lifts. Never the less, I persevered and worked through many painful tears in regaining my mobility in order to properly execute these lifts at significant weights. Why would I do a movement that would sometimes hurt so bad it would make me cry? Because I needed and believed my life could get back to normal or at least some semblance of normalcy. I could have gave in to the pain and accepted my fate in life as a disabled individual. My personal doctor had actually suggested I go on permanent and full disability because of the horrible pain I was still suffering. That was my final visit to her office. I was not about to give up and go on disability. By God’s good grace, a lot of work and several moments of shed tears, I was going to become normal again. And I have, despite still living with chronic pain in my right leg from my butt down to my right foot.

Life Today

Today, my life is pretty normal, or normal for me. I am an over the road trucker who works 60 to 80 hours a week in a semi, delivering construction and industrial supplies across the state of Kansas. I eat healthy every day of the week and train with heavy weights no less than 3 days per week and try to go for a couple 9 mile brisk walks each week on my non lifting days. I know the struggles of recovering from a devastating injury, and I know up close and personal the challenges of working through tears of pain in order to regain my life. I know about finding my way and working through dark depression when it seemed life would never be worth living again. I have been through almost losing everything I ever worked for through no fault of of my own other than trying to be a good employee and helping my plant manager which resulted in a devastating injury which cost me a well paying job that I loved.

Friends, I want you to know that with faith in God and in yourself, that you can overcome much more than you may ever believe. Even though the road traveled to get better may be really tough and cause you pain, recovery is possible for most who work towards it. To this day, I have mad respect when I see others overcome challenges which are and could have been a permanent life changing events. Because of my own life experience, I will happily cheer on those I see working through recovery. In fact, one of my newest friends at my gym is a sweet 83 year old lady who works her ass off to recover from a debilitating stroke she suffered last year. The other day, I commented to Clarice it was good to see her in the gym getting her exercise in. She corrected me and told me she was getting in her workout, not exercise. I smiled as I knew exactly the point she was making to me. It is a great joy to walk into my gym and see Clarice getting in her workout. This little lady has tremendous heart to live her life normally and her efforts are obvious when she is using all the different weight machines and other equipment in the gym.

In closing, know that you can fly higher after a debilitating set back in life than you might ever think or imagine. You have to have faith and great drive. You have to put in effort during recovery even when it seems pointless to do so. Sure, you might put on some weight and lose some of your physical fitness after injury, yet that can all be remedied with a healthy diet and a mindset to do so. When the going gets tough, you have to learn to embrace the suck and drive on as we used to say in the military. Trust me, the pain of working through a recovery, no matter how bad it may be, is not as severe as the pain which will come from a life of regret for not trying to get better. When you are hurt, fix yourself and give others a reason to emulate your perseverance. The effort to overcome life’s obstacles is well worth the time invested.

Note: If you like our articles and recipes at David’s Way, please tap the like icon at the bottom of the piece to let us know how we are doing. Please feel free to leave comments and or questions, all will be answered.

Motivation/Learned Behavior

There is a lot of discussion about motivation in the health/wellness community.  This is particularly apparent in the conversations about diet and exercise.  We have been led to believe by popular culture that we must be properly motivated in order to be healthy.  Nothing could be farther from the truth.  Health is a lifetime commitment.  It is a choice.  It is not a flash in the pan, glittering elusively, available for only a moment assuming that we grab it quickly enough.  It is not dependent on our state of mind.  It is not dependent on circumstances.  It is a conscious decision on our part to do the right thing.  Agreeably, illness befalls some who have done everything right.  This Author has no answer for that unless we venture into the spiritual realm, but in almost every case, our health is in our hands.

 

A study on motivation was undertaken at Valdosta State University in 2011.¹  There was a question of how important motivation is in the role of learning and learned behavior.  The argument of external versus internal motivation was studied.  External being acquisition of positive, pleasant consequences and avoiding negative consequences.  Internal being the desire to feel good, to solve a problem, to acquire balance, to take control of one’s life or to meet an individually selected goal among other internal prompts to problem solve.  At first glance these seem similar, but they’re not.  The external cue of merely acquiring positive consequences is far removed from the desire to take control of our lives.  We can have the external cue to want to look hot in a swimsuit, (acquisition of positive, pleasant circumstances) all we want but until we make up our minds that we want to take control of our lives, (internal), we will flounder.  Like Nike says, “Just Do It.”  David Yochim says “I’ve never done easy in my life.” and that is so true.  We have to decide what we want and do what it takes to get it.  Excuses to avoid healthy behaviors are not reasons.

 

So often we wait until we “feel like it”.  So often we get motivated by external cues and start that race with vigor.  So often we are successful for a season and we have an overly emotional moment…day…Oh, okay, decade, and we just give up.  This is the problem with depending on “being able” to do it.  We aren’t.  We are programmed to take the easy path of least resistance.  Everything in nature is.  There is nothing in the natural world that voluntarily does the hard thing.  That’s where our mind comes in.  We make a decision and we do the hard things, every day until those hard things are routine and one day, we look in the mirror and barely recognize ourselves.  One day, we go to the doctor and he/she is jealous of our blood work.  One day,  we are passing along what we have learned in the hard times, hoping that maybe, just maybe, others will learn to do what’s hard in order to achieve the ultimate goal, good health.  One day, because we never did easy, we become the person on the outside that we have always been on the inside.  Get in your own head. Do hard. ;-*

 

¹www.edpsycinteractive.org/topics/motivation/motivate.html

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Another Inexpensive Meal

Let’s straighten out the myth it is expensive and time consuming to eat healthy.

My lunch was one and a half cups of black beans cooked with three ounces of shrimp, a couple tablespoons of salsa and seasoned with chili lime Mrs. Dash and habanero hot sauce. Garnished with a dollop of fresh guacamole for a grand total of 1 point for 472.8 calories, 5.3g fat, 67.5g complex carbs and 43.5g of protein.

The total cost came in at $3.38 and only took about 7 minutes to prepare.

Beyond The Scale

Beyond the Scale is a mantra of Weight Watchers. How many ways can we interpret what this means? I would say it could have a different meaning for everybody who begins the program. But, here is my interpretation. It could be that with zero point foods we do not need to weigh them before consuming because they are free. But it has a much deeper meaning to me. Beyond the Scale to me is about not only getting our body weight down to a desirable range, but more so about living a life style of health and wellness. There are a lot of us on Connect who have reached our goal weight and are now on maintenance so our focus is going to be a little different than those still working on losing weight. Me personally, it is entirely about living healthy for the rest of my life, to never become a burden to my family with ailments that can be prevented by proper diet and exercise. Beyond the Scale as an individual who has reached goal reminds me of graduation from basic training in the military. Like basic training, Weight Watchers gave me the basic skills needed to lose weight; By fully utilizing the app, I have all the tools I need in order to live a life of health and wellness. Just like graduating from basic training, my journey has only truly just begun because now it is incumbent on me to prove to myself that I can press on with all that I have learned. Making goal to me was not an end, but the beginning of the next chapter which will only come to completion on the day I die.

Results Count…

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In the words of my old HCS-4 Red Wolf Command Master Chief Mike Wagner, Results count, everything else is bullshit. Well, as evidenced in my picture above, I have achieved great results on Weight Watchers, no bullshit. Specifically my best weight loss has come from their program change to Free Style where a few daily smart points were taken away, but 200 foods were given zero points. I now weigh 174 pounds with only 10% body fat.

I am always somewhat perplexed when I hear folks say that Free Style does not work for them. I have yet to see anyone really give a straight answer as to why they believe it does not work for them. Yet I suspect I already know why anyhow. I always wonder how many of the folks complaining it does not work have actually taken the time to read up on what they need to do in order to successfully work the program. I wonder how many believe that zero points is a free ride to eat as much as they want while ignoring the basic truth that fat loss or gain is still a matter of calories consumed vs calories burned. How many of these folks are trying to eat 23 to 28 points of sugar laden crap and then filling up on zero point foods and greatly exceeding their caloric needs for the day. Weight Watchers has spent a great deal of time and research before launching this program. I would go out on a limb and say these folks for the most part either just simply hate change, or they have not taken the time to educate themselves on how to work the program. I would advise anyone who is struggling with Free Style to go back over the course of a couple weeks and add up all their daily caloric intake and see where they are making the mistake and then fix it. It is basic nutrition and not rocket science.

I have had great success and have often been asked what I do and how I do it. I do intermittent fasting on the 16:8 protocol and eat a high protein diet with zero simple carbs, or refined sugar. The carbs I do eat are complex, or slow burning, and often I will try to pair them with a fat to further inhibit their effect on blood sugar and insulin. Sometimes I do not know whether to be pissed or humored when folks ask for advice because “They can not lose” and then they get all butt hurt when I advise them to drop the sugar. I had one individual not only unfriend me on Facebook, blocked me on Connect, and then spread lies about me being very rude. Good Lord, I only made a suggestion, not an enforceable command. A lot of folks think that what I promote is too restrictive, and despite their lack of success and asking me how to succeed, they flat out refuse to quit sugar. That’s perfectly fine, it is your life and I do not give that much of a damn if you heed my advice or not. But, it is pretty fucking lame to follow me on Connect for any given time, to see what I do and expect for me to advise anything different than how I live my life personally. If you believe you can control your sugar intake, more power to you. But do not sit back and publicly proclaim a program does not work while still filling your gut with it. If you have lacked self control with sugar and got fat and out of shape in the first place, what makes you believe you can now control it forever and to never regain the weight you may or may not have lost. It is no different than the hard core drunken alcoholic who now thinks he can have a couple drinks once or twice a week and never return to being a drunken slob. Go ahead Skippy, you are only kidding yourself.

My accountability for food intake and exercise for the day; 36 points for 2354 calories, 91g fat, 150.7g carbs, and 235.5g protein. I did not have any weight training scheduled for the day, but went to the wife and got in some cardio. I ended up jogging on a treadmill for 40 minutes after doing 20 pull ups and 20 body weight dips.