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Survival of the Fattest or Thanksgiving

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I didn’t blow-up from guilt-riddled over consumption on Thanksgiving.

In November of 1680, the Mayflower anchored at Plymouth, Massachusetts. They had left Plymouth, England 66 days earlier, but stayed on the ship for lack of shelter in the harsh New England winter. Half of the travelers were dead by spring 1681. The survivors moved off the ship. At least 3 different area native tribes showed up to teach the new arrivals how to survive. When the Fall harvest came, the Wampanoag tribe celebrated with these Pilgrims in harmony. The modern celebration is something different from that. My people would gather as a feast was purchased, prepared, and consumed. Harmony was in short supply. Grandma and her minions would be offended if I didn’t go back for more food several times, so I did. It is part of my creeping obesity and my gift for being guilted into whatever is on the menu.

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I no longer eat out of guilt or to survive. The Native Americans no longer help the Pilgrims except by providing gambling therapy.

There is a plan for the rest of the Holidays and beyond. Here are the eating plan tips.

6 Tricks or tips for the healthy survival of the Holidays

  1. Eat a vegetable or fruit with everything, remember healthy eating habits.
  2. Make the meal plate 3/4th vegetables and 1/4th the protein.
  3. Do cardio on feast days, it will aid digestion.
  4. Drink water before and during the meal.
  5. Enjoy the celebration, everything in moderation including moderation.
  6. Remember to be Thankful all the time.

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Here are The 5 Worst things you can do (paraphrased from To Your Health)

  1. Not sticking to a schedule. Daily workout plan and general mealtime plan.
  2. Telling yourself you’ve earned it. Bad eating habits are habits. Make good choices.
  3. Falling prey to the blues. Seasonal depression and poor eating habits can go hand in hand.
  4. Doing the same old thing, it is time to mix up your exercise plan to revitalize your system. Variety is the spice of life.
  5. Looking ahead. Looking too far into the future in a negative way leads back to # 3.

I no longer eat out of guilt or to survive, food is everywhere. There is no shortage. I eat things that I choose to eat. Meals are an opportunity for a healthy choice. I choose fresh, in season, local food when I can. I avoid fast food, processed food, and chemistry set products when I can. The choice is mine. It is yours too.

 

Be Healthy

Dave

 

The First Law of Thermodynamics

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I am now 220 lbs (-20)

The first law of thermodynamics is a version of the law of conversion of energy, adapted for thermodynamic systems. The law of energy states that the total energy of an isolated system is constant; energy can be transformed from one form to another but can be neither created nor destroyed. Wikipedia.

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Life fits this definition. Our life force energy cannot be destroyed but only transformed. How does this go with diet, exercise, and spiritual practice?

According to this law, we are everlasting energy. This statement commits me to both science and spiritual thinking. Our spirit can only be transformed. When my body dies there will be a transformation. Real science mixed with spiritual practice, cool.

Diet: Power plants and engines operate by turning heat energy into work. Heated gas can do work on turbines or pistons, causing them to move. Our diet needs to be the fuel to provide the heat energy. We need to match it with work.

Exercise: Our system is designed to do work. When I exercise I use the system as it was intended to do its job. Everything in it heats up. Real thermodynamics is happening as my fuel is transformed. The benefits are amazing; digestion is aided, blood flow increases everywhere to help everything. Muscles and joints are moved to proper position and order. My whole spirit and personality are improved.

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Oak Glen

This weeks’ adventures included a day trip to Oak Glen, California. It is our Inland Empire apple farming area. We enjoyed the ride into the country. It was their Apple Festival time. We sampled many types of apples and a couple of other goodies. We bought a big bag of Jonagold hybrid apples. Over the week we ate everyone. On our way home, we stopped at one of our favorite farmers’ market stores, Dalton Orchard Ranch Market. We bought lots of freshly picked veggies.

 

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Workout Station: it’s not as foolish as you think

Next topic is this weeks’ exercise. Bay swimming is still good, we enjoyed a morning swim. The video of Seabridge Park in Huntington Harbor, unfortunately, would not post here to give you the idea of the peace at our cool season swim spot. The above photo is at my classroom workout station ( a chair and a wall). This workout is simple and can be done almost anyplace. It is my 30-minute fix. The chair should be secured by the wall. I do 3 sets of each exercise: 1) 15 lunges 2) 30 second modified planks 3) 15 deep squats 4) 15 chair push-ups 5) 15 dips. I mix or alternate lunges and planks (iPhone timer). Then alternate squats and push-ups. Then finish up with the dips off of the chair or a table. This resistance training helps me stay on a daily routine when I can’t find the time to walk, ride, or swim.

Be healthy

In the spirit, Dave

Debugging Thought Virus

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No man can save his brothers’ soul or pay his brothers’ debt. 

Paraphrase of Psalm 49.7

  The market for information on diet, exercise, and spiritual practice needs an infusion of truth and expertise. My voice has some depth because of my B.A, in Physical Education which includes Anatomy, Physiology, and Kinesiology added to my years of spiritual practice.

  An article/story came into me this week which needs to be addressed.

“Everything You Know About Obesity Is Wrong”, Sept. 19th Huffington Post, Highline. https://highline.huffingtonpost.com/articles/en/everything-you-know-about-obesity-is-wrong/.

   The author, Michael Hobbes says the medical industry is under-trained regarding nutrition and diet. The industry has failed to address our obesity epidemic. That sounds right. The story also wants us to change our thinking and actions about overweight and obese people. We need to stop bullying and shaming them into perceived better eating and lifestyle. He states that ⅔ of dieters gain back more than they lost even on the most well-known programs. He says that even our Physicians are trying to shame our fatties into dieting.

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  After many examples, he gets to the real issues; 1) 60% of the calories Americans consume come from “ultra-processed foods”. 2) The minority community children see twice as many ads for soda and candy as white children. The story next goes into a series of facts blaming the trillion-dollar food system. All of which I do not dispute. I must draw conclusions now. However, the conclusions I came to are not the same as the authors.

My conclusion is to limit the processed food industry by not buying and consuming so much of their obesity making product. We should encourage healthy purchasing and healthy eating. We should all eat healthily. The authors’ conclusion is to create another group of “protected class” people, “the obese”. Just leave them alone. His conclusion is poor in regarding the health cost to the individual and the cost to the community that now share the burden of health care.

  I’m in favor of healthy eating education. Our food stamp program should offer rewards for healthy purchases (some states are starting to do this). The big business food producers should not be subsidized from farm to table. Finally, we should offer Physicians and patients bonuses for fitness. What if we had wellness rewarded in our insurance system?

Sometimes our thoughts need to change.

Be healthy

In the spirit, Dave

ONE SIZE DOES NOT FIT ALL

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It has been two long weeks to get to my writing time. Two weeks ago I started my 14 hour work days. In preparation, I made 2 simple commitments 1). to find time to read 30 minutes each day at my A.M. in order to keep up with my learning 2). to find time to walk for 35 minutes each day at my P.M. job to keep my fitness program going. I scheduled meditation time into the parking lot between jobs. My wife, Robin and I talked about meal planning in which we agreed to keep our late night dinner light so I could go to bed comfortable. Light dinner to me means soup or salad. I would eat my largest meal at lunch, which she helped prepare. Menu: breakfast- egg cup and coffee; lunch- salad or power juice and fruit; snack- apple and trail mix. Then I made 6 breakfast egg muffin tin starters. Salad started with clean, organic and from the backyard.

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Body types

While walking I have started listening to health, diet and fitness podcasts. They have reminded me of some things I learned back in college but I haven’t really used. The example of this is a Canadian fitness expert I’m listening to saying there are 4 types of body types. Each is uniquely driven by endocrine hormones. These body types are Ectomorph, Mesomorph, Endomorph, and Gonadic/Ovary. Each one carries the body weight differently.

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The logic is that each of these requires a different diet, but there are lots of variations in the associated hormones with each body type which affect the metabolism of different foods in each type. Each has built into it different natural hunger times and preferred dietary wants. We all know people that get up really early and are actively doing stuff before most others. We also know people who are at their best late into the night. These 2 different endocrine/hormone driven types would require and desire different diet and feeding patterns. All diet plans are one size fits all. They can not and will not work for everyone. Each person’s diet should be constructed to work with their unique rhythms.

This week I am tracking and charting differently. I will note food consumed, calories consumed, calories burned, and the daily time each of these things happens. Then I can see if I get a little insight to me. One problem with this type of mapping is that there are outside influences like job required lunchtime, that can affect the naturally driven wants.

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I practice a modified form of Zen meditation. Pop culture is starting to call this Mindfulness Meditation. I have had no formal training or education in this practice. I have read and watched information on this as well as having done it in a group setting. I have been at it for 30 years. Last week I began the daily meditation in my car; in the parking lot at Angel Stadium as I wait to line up for the time clock. I follow my breath, I concentrate and focus on it. I breath 5 times. Next, I take 3 sets of 3 breaths while mentally saying a spiritual internalizing phrase. At this point, I am noting thoughts, sounds, sensations, and watching my experience arise and pass away moment to moment. My phone alarm will bring me back and away I go back to the busy world.

Be Healthy.

In the spirit, Dave

 

A WEEK OF LABOR

Empowering people to live a longer and healthier life through diet, exercise, and spiritual practice.

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Everyone is busy. Right now finding time for healthy meal planning, exercise, and meditation is like trying to find the red Easter egg my brother had hidden in the strawberry patch. It is a challenge.

Sunday, the day before Labor Day, my wife and I did some planning for the week. We were looking forward to Monday off. We headed out to the local Sprouts Market for the good seasonal sale items. We grabbed bunches of needed and wanted fresh vegetables. In the afternoon, I did some meal planning and prep. I baked Muffin Tin Eggs. There are variations of the recipe online. I greased a standard muffin tin and then lined each cup with deli meat. I put in a tablespoon of chopped spinach, a tablespoon of shredded cheese and then cracked an egg in each cup. I baked it at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. I just popped them out and refrigerated. The result was 6 breakfast on the go meals. Next, I penciled out the weeks’ dinner menu. I remembered the plan vegetables first.

Mon.-garden salad, fresh broccoli, cauliflower rice, and grilled burgers.

Tues.-zucchini and fish.

Wed.-broccoli and chicken breast

Thurs.-break, night out

Fri.-fresh steamed vegetables and salmon.

If I have that much planned, I can make a nice dinner with having to think and figure it out at the end of a day.

Exercise this week included a long walk on Monday while listening to a health and fitness podcast. This walk was important because a clear message came to me during the walk. I had to write it down when I got home. I emailed it to a couple of advisors for review. One advisor called me back after a positive response and said it looked like a mission statement…and so it is. Empowering people to live a longer and healthier life through diet, exercise, and spiritual practice.

On Saturday I hustled my body and my wife out to Palos Verdes to Terranea Resort for their Nature Walk, bird education and hiking to Point Vicente Lighthouse. Then we enjoyed a salmon lunch on the patio. That’s a good day at a classy spot.

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The coming work week will be 14 hour days so I am reviewing my schedule and planning to make it a healthy, happy time.

Here is a list of blog and information sites I regularly read and use as resources. You can use what you went and leave the rest.

Fit to Fat and Back online resources

https://www.livestrong.com

www.precisionnutrition.com

http://diet.mayoclinic.org

https://www.womenshealthmag.com

https://www.myfitnesspal.com/

https://toyourhealth.com

https://www.cell.com/cell-metabolism/home

Be healthy, and let me know what you think of the Mission Statement

Dave

METABOLIC and MEDITATION

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Winter Season Adjustment

This blog never was about being on a diet to lose weight; it is about my attempt to return to fitness with My Fitness Triangle, Food plan-Exercise plan-Peaceful spirit. I am restating that because I am stuck. After my weight dropped to 225 pounds and I was feeling good about the progress, everything came to a standstill. The pounds stopped dropping off and my back went out.

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The Plateau

It took me about 3 years to make the psychological and physiologic adjustment to living in the Great Northwest, a place with winter. I grew up in Southern California and that is how my head and body worked. In the rustic outback of Oregon, I learned there are jobs and tasks to go with each season. As the weather and temperature change, your mind and body go through changes too. I believe something similar is happening to me now, an adaptation period. The Mayo Clinic defines a weight-loss-plateau: “Muscle helps keep the rate at which you burn calories (metabolism) up. So as you lose weight, your metabolism declines causing you to burn fewer calories than you did at your heavier weight”.  https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/weight-loss/in-depth/weight-loss-plateau/art-20044615.

Here are 4 things they say to do. 1). Reassess your habits. Research suggests that off and on loosening of rules contribute to plateaus. 2). Cut more calories. Further cut your daily calories. 3). Rev up your workout. Increase time and intensity plus add weight training to increase muscle mass which will help burn more calories. 4). Pack more activity into the day. Think outside the gym. Walk more, use the car less, do more to burn calories. This all fits for me.

BMR

Basal Metabolic Rate

    I used to work with a guy who looked really lean. His name was Cleary. He would park his car about 3 blocks from our work front door. I asked him why? Cleary said he used to weigh over 300 pounds and now was 187. I was amazed, so I ask what diet he had used. He said he had not used a diet but rather had used portion control and walking to lose the weight over a 3 year period. He said he parked his car each day farther and farther from where he was headed to get more activity until it was now his healthy habit. He had the answer for him.

  WebMD on weight loss plateau says the #1 tool is “Imagine you healthy and vibrant”. This is from Katherine Tallmadge, MA, RD, author of Diet Simple, “The mind is a strong tool__use it to achieve what you want. Have a vision of success”. I like that and I can meditate on My Fitness Triangle.

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  If I stick with my plan it will all work out. BMR is on my side. Basal Metabolic Rate is the minimum number of calories your body organs need to function while you perform no activity. I think of it as the amount of energy I’d burn if I stayed in bed all day. I used an online BMR calculator to find that my body uses 1806 calories a day on that. I am doing a 2030 calorie a day plan, at some point, my weight has to come down.

 

In the spirit-Dave

TONGVA : The Local Native People

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Tony Horton is a Personal Trainer, Author, and Creator of the P90X Extreme Workout. He has a Ted Talk telling everyone about health and fitness. His focal points are 1. Move, at least 20 minutes or more a day with a variety of activities, 2. Consistency, 5 to 7 days a week, 3. Intensity, push to add and do more, 4. Purpose, why do this stuff, 5. Food, he describes eating right. This should sound familiar to my readers. Google: Tony Horton Ted Talk and you will get 10 minutes of motivation.  My last weeks’ exercises were a good variety of activities. I swam in Huntington Harbor, walked through Gum Grove Park which is a Tongva tribal camp area in Seal Beach, and lifted weights in my garage. These were accompanied by my regular neighborhood walks on off days. A variety of activities is supposed to speed weight loss and fitness. The weather was hot so most activities were early, but a good week.

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Eating Right

   I read an online article in To Your Health from 8/1/18 titled A Groundbreaking Way to Live Longer. It claimed the Fountain of Youth can be found by reducing your calorie intake by 15 percent over a two year period. The article cited a study published in Cell Metabolism indicating that your body processing less may equate to less cell damage. That sounds good. A lot of aging studies are published in Cell Metabolism. As I mentioned, MyFitnessPal has set my caloric goal at 2030 calories per day. I think that is probably an easy 15 percent below what I was eating.  At some point, I’ll look at 1724 as a new goal, not now. I am still working on this goal as a challenge. I went out to eat 3 times last week and I tend to overdo when out. I found myself making good choices but too much volume. I guess I’m still struggling with that moderation thing.

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  No Fast Food. Do you still eat at McDonald’s? Big Mac has 540 Propylene Glycol washed calories, add french fries and it goes to about 900 calories. Ugh. Propylene Glycol is a version of ethylene glycol which is as dangerous to consume as antifreeze. Its food function is to prevent products from becoming too solid. 90% of all frozen burgers have this. Ugh.

BE HEALTHY

In the spirit, Dave