Food Pic of the Week

I’m still trying to get back into the groove of getting back to my blog updates. 

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Since I’m trying to drop a few pounds, I decided to break my intermittent fasting periods with two scoops of protein powder and then have a nice balanced dinner. Yes, I know this is not technically food, but I needed a moment to bitch about something. This GNC Performance Pro brand tastes like crap. Actually, it tastes like crap mixed with dirt, anger, and evil. Normally, I tend to purchase protein power that Muscle Milk makes, but I was conned by GNC 2 for 1 deal for Performance Pro. Now, I have to struggle through two containers of this crap . . . maybe I will learn to like the taste. Even if this was 2 for 1, I wonder if I can exchange the unopened container for something less nasty like urine, spoiled milk, or raw sheep’s liver?

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Making some plans – Weight Loss Part I

In the past couple of years, I try to come up with some things that I can do to get into better shape. Clearly, I’m not doing something right because I have not significantly dropped any major poundage. Usually, this idea comes right off of the heels of the NYC Marathon. After running the marathon, it takes me about 2-3 weeks to care about doing physical activity again. Recently looking at my beer gin gut, I guess now is the time.

For the longest, I have not been happy with my body. Not like sad, depressed unhappy. More like, I want to have a better figure/share. Yeah, yeah, yeah, men can have self-image issues. I’m not super big, fat, thick, chunky (whatever you wanna call it), but I would not mind dropping a few pounds over the next few months. Right now, I am hovering in the 203 – 205 pound range, which is not HUGE (for the average individuals of my height), because I have some muscle. I’ve even been told that I “hold the weight well” because of my somewhat muscular frame. Perhaps, this was a back-handed compliment. Unfortunately, I have inherited the body type of my mother’s side of the family, and all of my uncles generally plump (and that’s being nice) up around the age of 40. It’s funny, one of my uncles was pretty lean and fit at 37 years old, then by 39, he gained like 50 pounds.

A few things that I plan to do going forward. We’ll see how much I screw this up. 

  1. Track my calories . . . again. I accidentally updated the Lose It! app to Lose It! Pro (or whatever the hell the highest tier is called). In the past, I’ve tried (and failed in)  logging my daily food consumption. My biggest issue (aside from not logging my food) was logging my food after finishing a meal. One thing that I realized when logging my food (for the past two days) is that I snack A LOT at home. Since they are little bites to eat here and there (a few pita chips, a small glass of egg nog, a slice of ham, another small helping of dinner), I did not realize how much the little things add up. It’s like they say, losing weight is more dieting than physical activity. 
  2. I have started intermitting fasting (IF) again. Right now, I’m fasting for 14 hours. Although IF is not really a dieting plan per se, I did find that I got fuller with less food after a fast. Also, it works well because I get drunker too so I spend less money on booze. Yes, I’m a nut. 
  3. In terms of my physical activity, I have not really made in any concrete plans. I have been running a bit and going to the gym, but I’m kind of all over the place. I’ll need to sit down and think about my goals and plans that I can do for completing these goals. Word on the street is the NYRR is holding its drawing for the NYC Half-Marthon for March 2019. Maybe if I’m selected for that, I can better devise something to help with my getting more fit and losing some damn weight. Actually . . . Why do not I just “pretend” that I’m running a half in March and devise a training plan that way? Yeah, I’ll do that. Running 13.1 miles on my own is not as an arduous task of running 26.2 miles. Look, I’m already making some progress. 

 

TO BE CONTINUED . . .

A couple of questions:

  1. Do you have any plans for dropping some pounds over the next few months?
  2. What has your experience been tracking your food (i.e. counting calories)? Did you find food apps useful?

Just Being Basic

I have been kind of absent from this medium for almost a week. I do not know what happened, but it seems that 50 million things are coming at me all once. I did not even go to “da bar”  (with exception to Friday) or to any Zumba classes at all week. That should tell you how busy I was this week.

Mondays blog entries are supposed to be a weekly summary of my workouts; but alas, I did not do jack sh*t for the majority of the week. I wonder if anyone else has this feeling that I am about to describe.

You miss one or two workouts at the beginning of the week, then you just say screw it for the rest of the week. That pretty much was me Monday to Saturday.

At least, I did an “easy” run to get back into the groove on Sunday. I really need to hammer down and start some type of fitness regimen. I had something set up  before; but clearly, I am not following it. It is hard to stay focused when you do not have anything to train for.

Although this is not a training event, I am starting a training calendar to get somewhat beach-ready for our Cancun vacation in 47 days. Maybe between intermittent fasting and actually working out, I can lose about 8 or so pounds. Although I would like to lose more, I figure 8 pounds is an attainable goal for 47 days. Actually, while I’m writing about this, I probably should sign up for a NYRR race or two.

Here is my preliminary workout schedule:

  • Monday – Zumba
  • Tuesday – Run and X-train
  • Wednesday – Nothing – Date night (unless, I do something in the morning)
  • Thursday – Nothing – Date night (unless, I do something in the morning)
  • Friday – Run
  • Saturday – Nothing (more than likely because of hangover recovery) or X-train
  • Sunday – Longer/easy run

Although I was lazy, I managed to squeeze out one 3 mile run and I was a little surprised (in a good way) with my pace. I thought the Strava app was off but my Apple watch was giving more or less the same splits.

Random: I find that running apps on the iPhone gives faster times than GPS wristwatches. Maybe it has something to do with the constant swinging of the phone while running with it in my shorts’ pocket.

Basically, I did a few loops around Marcus Garvey Park. Actually, I think this park will be a “RUNderful” training ground, because there are many flights of stairs that can climb. During my run, I felt sooooo sluggish, but Apple watch said I ran 8’37” min/mile pace. Perhaps, I felt sluggish because I have not completed any runs in a long time.

Upcoming Registered Races:

  • Japan Run (4M), Sunday, May 13th
  • Italy Run by Ferrero (5M), Sunday, Jun. 3rd
  • Front Runners New York LGBT Pride Run (5M), Saturday, Jun. 23rd. Crap, I just realized that I will be flying back to NYC from Cancun. Well . . that’s 23 bucks down the toilet. Ugh, I hate wasting money on non booze and food activities.
  • NYRR Retro 4-Miler, Saturday, July 14th

 

Fasting Intermittently

I know that I put this term in reverse order. Last week I was kind of dissing this eating program, where I fast for 16 hours and eat within a 8 hour time frame.

I have not weighed myself but I do have some positive (and not so positive) things to report:

  • Although it doesn’t look like I have lost a ton of weight, I think that I have lost a little (we’ll see what the scale says on Easter). The other day I wore one of my somewhat slutty long sleeved, tight shirts and I didn’t look too disgusting … just a little. 😉
  • When I break the fast, I notice that I get fuller faster. Sometimes, I cannot finish restaurant portions of food. Normally, I would destroy this burrito plato, but I could eat only 1/2 of this. Random plug: If you are ever in lower Harlem, check out Dirty Cash/Sexy Taco on Lennox and W116.img_1186I was kind of disappointed, because this shit was gooooooood. I did pick the meat other of the other half though.
  • Sometimes I do not realize I have not eaten by 4 PM, but usually occurs when I have 80 million things to do at work.food
  • I am drinking more water; however, it may be too much. Before starting the fasting program, I would drink about 3-4 liters of water a day. Now, I’m close to 5.5-6 liters.the thirst is real.gif
  • I drink way too much coffee (and diet coke). Keep in mind, I rarely drank coffee before starting this fasting program. Btw, these flavored diet cokes are amazing. img_1181                                                            It was very zesty.
  • Since I’m drinking more liquids (outside of booze), I’ve been pissing more. Now, my job is very meeting based, so I have too make sure that I go twice before a meetingpee.gif
  • I think that I’m smoking more cigarettes. Matter of fact, I’m smoking as I write this entry.
  • I drink less booze during my slore adventures, because I’m buzzed after 4 gin n sodas.
  • I constantly have to be doing something so I can ignore my food cravings. This past Sunday, I was home all damn day and I was constantly grubbing. In my defense, I do not fast on Sundays, since the Lord (well, maybe a pope) says that you don’t have to fast on Sundays during Lent.

Bah Humbug Training Update

Ugh, my fitness goals are all of the freaking place and nonexistent at the same time. Just last week, I was thinking that I hate not having anything to train for. These series of injuries really have put a damper in my fitness goals. I think the back injury is over and the tendinitis in my left arm is recovering.

Intermittent Fasting Woes

I do not know how well this intermittent fasting thing is going. Just to refresh your memory, I decided to do this fast as giving up something for Lent, which is from Ash Wednesday (Feb. 14, 2018) to Holy Thursday (Mar. 29th, 2018). Typically for this season, one is supposed to give up something for 40 days . . . in my case, I guess that I’m giving eating for 16 hours every day. Although this is a religious tradition and I not super religious, I like to give up something every year just to tell myself that I can live without something. Before you ask. No, I have not given up cigarettes or booze during Lent. I mean, word on the street is that Jesus did turn water into wine, so I’m sure that he probably turned water into hard liquor too. I really do not have any excuses for the smoking vice. Ok, I’m getting off topic.

The point of all of this rambling. Basically it has been about 26 days into the fast, and I have not seen any noticeable changes in my physical appearance. Yeah, Yeah, Yeah. I know that 26 days is no time on a diet  on an improved eating program, but I was expecting to notice SOMETHING. I have not actually weighed myself, because I want to save that for the end as a big finale. But, it looks like my big finale will be a bust. . . because I will be busting out of my pants 😉 I really do not get it. I have been working out more or less the same since December, but I’m eating less (and somewhat healthier). I just do not know what I’m doing wrong. Also, it’s annoying that when I see people who live more unhealthily lifestyles than me (yes, there are people who live more unhealthy than I) lose weight by changing one thing.

I swear, I’m going to be very upset if I do not see significant weight loss by Easter aka “Welcome Back, Jesus” Day.

Let me stop there, because I feel like this entry could go down a very dark path, and I still need to saving some hating energy for the rest of the day. . . today is monday Zumba day. I’m going to bring it back to the original idea of this post, training for an event.

The “Event”

As of this morning the BF and I, booked a week getaway to Cancun in June. To be more specific, our trip is in 97 days!!! I know that Cancun is pretty much a typical tourist trap, but I wanted have a super lazy vacation. This means going to an all-inclusive resort, drinking fruity, sugary drinks, laying on the beach, and stuffing my face at the buffets for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Well . . . the resort does have a few swim up bars, so that will be my physical activity. Perhaps, I will fit in a SCUBA diving excursion.

Matter of fact, we are going to the same resort where my cousin had his wedding a few years ago. 

The funny/sad thing is that I was drunk in each picture. (Left) I had gotten back to my hotel room at 8 AM after sloring all night outside of the tourist areas in Cancun (Yo queria practicar my espanol). Matter of fact, I have a gin and juice in my hand. (Middle) The family took an excursion to Las Islas Mujeres and I wanted a pic with our tour guide. . . who was a fun nut. (Right) I had had it with family time, so I ventured out own my own on another night in Cancun. The funny thing is that my aunt was stayed up waiting for me in our hotel room, like I was late for curfew. Well I did arrive at 4 AM. LOL, I was so trashed that I need to take a nap on the beach before my cousin’s actual wedding.

TMI warning (highlight this line to find out). Ugh, my goddamn  poop had a blueish color and  I vomited in the ocean. Oh well, YOLO. I had a blast at Club Once/Once.

My updated training goal is to get a least somewhat beach ready by Jun 18th. I kind of have some ideas of how I can improve some physical issues regarding my workouts and (most importantly) my diet.

Question: How do you get over not meeting your physical goals, especially in regards to weight? Help a brotha out.

Random Thursday Update

Intermittent Fast:

So far, so good . . . for the most part. I have not been weighing myself to see if there is anydiet weight loss, but I do “feel” lighter. Well, I feel lighter until downing 1 liter of water to ward off my hunger. Actually, now that I am in week three, I really do not feel intense hunger pangs any longer. Outside of drinking water, green tea, and diet coke (here and there), my first meal of the day is around 3 PM – a time of day that I never thought I could have my first meal. Also, I have noticed that I do get a sense of fullness faster, since I have started this fasting program. For example, today I ate a little more than a quarter of a sub and I was still stuffed after an hour. Well . . . I also did have a small oatmeal cookie. My downfall to this diet will be late-night drinking, because my eyes become bigger than my stomach in those cases.

Foot infection (don’t worry, there will not be any gross photos).

Ok, I totally understand that a Ph.D. in Molecular Oncology and Immunology is not aphd medical degree, even though the field is biomedicine, but cut me some slack. This semi rant comes up, because I had an appointment with a podiatrist to figure out what’s going on with my foot infection (technically an infection between my pinky and ring toes). From jump, one of the doctors (I was seen by a chief resident and the main doc.) asked about my profession. Told her what I do now and mentioned that I used to be a cancer researcher. Asking that is not a big deal, because I know many doctors like (or should want) to know more about their patients’ lives. Long story short, the chief resident starting to give me a crash course about the epidermis, fungal versus bacterial infections, and the healing steps involved with the skin. All of which I know. Remember, Ph.D. in a biomedical field. She cleaned the wound with betadine, an antiseptic, then she started to explain what it was. Um, thanks, DOC. I used betadine to prevent bacterial contamination in cell culture for over 15 YEARS!!!! I know what it does.

Basically, the doc prescribed me more antifungal cream and to keep doing what I have been doing regarding cleaning the infection. Great a $30 copay and $25 cream well spent.

Half-Marathon

Ugh, I think that I’m not running (or walking) this thing. I feel really shady, because so many folks are posting about it on WordPress and on Facebook. And, I’m all like whatever. I guess that’s how people were when I was always talking about running the NYC marathon during the summer.

Vacation:

The BF wants to plan a vacation (oh snap, this topic reminded me that I need to checkvacation how many vacation days I have) . . . Sweet 7 days (I accrue two days for every month I work, with 24 being the max). Any recommendations for us? We gotta act soon because it’s already March and prices are gonna start going up . . . if they haven’t already. I’m thinking of a lazy vacation, so maybe a resort type of thing. He really wants to go to eastern cost of Costa Rica, which I’m not too big on because I’ve been to that region two times. I do not want to be the person who is the “know it all” on a trip. I would like to go somewhere where I haven’t been but I’ve traveled extensively in Latin America and he has not. Cuba has come up, but I do not know if I can travel there anymore (he can go, since he is a citizen of Spain). HA! Just as I was typing this a coworker stopped by and started to talk to me about his weekend trip. Then, we talked about my potential trips, and he recommended Nicaragua.

Quick List for vacation:

  1. Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic – easy breezy resort trip. I’ve been there a few times, pretty nice (and cheap) accommodations
  2. Cancun, Mexico – resort trip. Laying on my big ass, sloring, and eating tacos are fun things for me. Maybe this time I can check out some culture.
  3. Limon, Costa Rica – adventure  vacation . . . maybe not.
  4. Nicaragua – adventure vacation . . . need to do more intel

That’s all for me.

Where in the Western Hemisphere would you visit multiple times?

Ugh, I’m falling apart over here

Last week really did a number on my body.

The back still is screwed up. I’m pretty much in the same position where I can do everything except run. We are getting closer to the United Half-Marathon and I’m kind of getting in FOMO mode, because everyone is excited about their training and race prep. Bah humbug.

Last week, I guess that leg day was a little too damn intense, because my quads are killing me. I do not even want think about walking down flights of stairs to and from my office.leg day

I definitely will have to make an appointment with a foam roller tonight.

What’s next on the injury list?

I did something to my left arm, so I cannot fully extend it. I believe this happened after my intense elliptical intervals, because I did 1 min on (at max resistant) and 2 min off interval workout for 60 minutes.

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Finally, I have a stupid infection between my pinky and ring toes and that mess hurts. It

fungus

 hurts to the point where I cannot wear dress shoes for work, so I look kind of weird wearing running shoes in an office setting. My running shoes are the only type of shoes that are wide enough to let me walk without any pain. Fortunately, I was able to get an appointment with a podiatrist this week and maybe he can scrap that crap off. Tough acting Tinacin my black ass.

Even though I have a growing laundry list of injuries and random BS, I had a great Zumba experience last Saturday. Foot injury be damned!!! The regular Zumba instructor had better reclaim his class soon, because the two substitute teachers’ classes have been way better than his. I’m just joking; I really hope Fabian’s knee gets better. Saturday’s substitute was an amazing instructor. I used to take some her Videography classes at another Crunch gym. Basically, every month we learned a new dance routine, based off of a popular music video. If memory serves me correctly, I think that we did choreography for Beyonce’s Formation; Britney Spear’s Toxic, Beyonce’s Partition; and something from Usher. I was kind of sad when my home Crunch gym stop hosting those classes. I think the choreography was too hard for some folks, so the attendance dropped significantly. Actually, I take that back. Since each month was a specific artist’s song, it was hard to play catch up if you missed one or two weeks.  As a matter of fact, I think the gym put some pole dancing class in its place. Wait. Or, was it the Turnin’ Tricks class – a cardio-based striptease class. *eye roll*

Fasting and Food:

Second week into my intermittent fast program has been going ok; however, I have not noticed any weight loss (you’ll see why below). Then again, I’ve weighed myself only once. However, I think that my body is getting used to having its first meal after 3 PM. I have noticed that I do not have to eat that much once the 16 hour fast is over.

Trying new things: After my fast on Saturday, I had a weird craving for the food of my West African people and decided to explore some spots near my apt in Harlem. Little did I know that 7th Avenue, which is known as Adam Clayton Powell Avenue, is also known as Africa Ave – perfect! I found a Senegalese place, but I was really annoyed. One: the restaurant only had 3 of the 15 things on the menu. WTF? Two (this should have been a red flag): the restaurant did not have couscous, which is kinda of like Pizza Hut running out of pizza. My fish, rice, and cabbage meal looked like a plate of vomit. Buuuuut, the waitress was really nice.

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Such an unfortunate way to end a 16-hour fast.

Oh three: the restaurant did not have diet coke; instead it had diet 7-UP. Who still drinks 7-UP? I remember that my great aunt used to make 7-UP pound cake when we were children.

I will admit that I did not fast on Sunday, because the BF did not have to work until 3PM, which is very rare, so we had brunch at Amy Ruth’s (a soul food place known for chicken a waffles). We rarely get to brunch together, since he works in the food industry and works during brunch. Random: Why is chicken and waffles considered southern food? Growing up in the South (granted, it wasn’t the Deep South), I’ve never seen chicken and waffles combined. College (’98-02) was the first time that I heard about this combination, because folks from California always were whining that there were no chicken and waffle places in New Orleans. Geez, just eat a beignet and shutup.

Our trip to Amy Ruth’s was the first time that I have eaten there in over eight years, and I was really disappointed. My steak was overcooked (my fault for getting a steak at a waffle joint) and the restaurant smelled like old ass chicken grease. After brunch I had to take a shower and change clothes because the smell was embedded on me. I hate smelling like food after I have eaten or cooked.

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Man, I think that the weekend needs to be three days. Unfortunately, I was not able to do all of the things that I needed to do around apartment, like meal prepping for the week. This means that I probably will eat crap during the week.

I’m beginning the blab about too many random things, so I think that I will end this entry here.