Category Archives: getting fit

This, this, all the this!

If you are a creative, this video will sounds very familiar – but it’s a universal message. Lord knows I’ve been down this road a few times. Determination, persistence and touch of naivete is usually enough to win the day – it’s just the “day” in question usually lasts for years.

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Eating Like a Girl? A No Sweets/ No Wheats Epilogue

For most of my life I was blessed with a very high metabolism.

Very high.

Couldn’t-keep-weight-on-if-my-life-depended-on-it high.

Combine that with an active lifestyle and I was a pretty skinny dude with a less than sensitive attitude about weight and diets and exercise. I wasn’t mean about it, but I never truly understood why people might not want to eat an entire funnel cake in one sitting or how they could worry about getting fat by finishing off a dozen Krispy Kremes all by themselves (a feat I do not recommend to anyone). In my mind all you had to do was chase your dog for 30 minutes or go dancing and all those “calories,” or whatever it is you count, just burn off!

But now I’m 36 and I sit in front of a computer screen for almost 10 hours per day and my metabolism is not what it used to be.

My lovely wife, Rene, is an actress and has been exercising and weight watching as part of her job for as long as I have known her. She’s very good at it and has written quite a bit about the subject on her BLOG.   She does calorie math in her head, knows the calories for her favorite foods in varying amounts and has a general catalog for good eating stowed in her brain ready to quick reference. I used to tease her relentlessly. But she’s not alone in this. Every adult actress I have ever know my whole life has been very conscious of what she eats and/or how often she exercises. It seems a bit crazy, and I do not envy women in this industry, but it is functionally part of their job to maintain a “look” and typically that involves being thin and fit. Emphasis on the thin. I don’t endorse this practice, but it is an important thing to note relative to how women in the entertainment industry program their heads when it comes to eating.

When I started No Sweets/ No Wheats I approached it in a mechanical manner: I can eat this, I cannot eat that. I set rules and was ready to follow them. It was poor planning. Rene heard about my challenge and her experience with finding ways to enjoy what you are restricted to came into play. Instead of just focusing on what I couldn’t eat (a surprisingly pessimistic view for me to take, even if it is pragmatic) she showed me how to focus on what I could eat. I started to notice how many calories were in things and just how many I was actually ingesting. I started actually reading the ingredient lists on things (and being surprised at what is in most food) and actually understanding them. I started to get serious about how much activity I got during the day. I found out that brown rice and vegetables (especially Amy’s Brown Rice and Vegetables) is actually pretty good. I got past the angry carnivore inside me that that grunts and says “Western Bacon Cheeseburger!” whenever I’m pressed for time and need to eat something quickly. I discovered quick food over fast food. I found out that food I actually like can be made in new ways and so making the change wasn’t so bad.

I started eating “like a girl.”

Now, due to regular gym exercise and eating better, I’m getting back the body I naturally had in my 20’s – although more grown up and manly – and I’m feeling  much better.

Now I want to hear all kinds of diet stories. What do you eat and why? tell me in the comments.

See you next time!

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Filed under body issues, food, funnel cake, getting fit, getting old, health, Hollywood, rene

No Sweets, No Wheats – It’s Over!

I have completed the No Wheats, No Sweets challenge and I’m feeling really good!

Even though the challenge is complete, I still felt leery drinking my breakfast smoothie this morning (it had a small amount of sugar in it). Now that it’s all done here’s what I can take away from the experience:

  • Although it was a little more difficult to eat on the go, it was not impossible or really all that hard at all. It just required a little more vigilance and avoiding junk food, two things that are good habits to get into anyway. Once I got over not being able to have a Western Bacon Cheeseburger new choices suddenly appeared as if by magic! Thank you to Taqueria de Anda and Trader Joe’s for making it easy to eat what I want in a way that fit with the challenge.
  • I don’t seem to have a problem with gluten. Some of the other challengers noticed a significant change in their bodies and energy levels based on eliminating gluten from their diets. Even Rene noticed that her body seemed to prefer no gluten. The only change I noticed was a lack of tortellini. And sour dough toast. And pancakes. And waffles. I do look forward to eating those again. I’ll let you know if I notice a change post challenge.
  • I prefer my coffee unsweetened now.
  • I’m skinnier. A lot skinnier. I was starting to get a bit of a paunch, not huge but noticeable. It is gone now and I almost have abs again. I’m going to add a lot of these changes to my “normal” life if only to get the abs back. Vanity is one hell of a motivator. By the way, total weight loss over the period of the challenge: 8 pounds! And I need to wear a belt with all of my pants. It’s pretty cool.
  • Sometimes you just need a good enough reason to start. In this case it was bribery, the promise of cash should I succeed, but bribery works and I’m very grateful to and Darcy Hogan for providing the bribery in this case.
  • I have discovered a love for dirty martinis. More on that in a different post.
Now that I’m no longer doing the No Sweets, No Wheats I want to hear about diets or challenges you might  be doing. Let me know in the comments.
See you next time!

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Filed under food, getting fit

No Wheats, No Sweets – The Home Stretch

There are only FIVE DAYS LEFT!

I feel great, I like how my body is changing, I have more energy and the restrictions really aren’t so bad. In fact, after all is said and done, I will probably maintain a significantly lower gluten and sugar diet.

All that being said, I’ve never wanted a funnel cake so badly in all of my life.

The 26th cannot come soon enough.
I’m also looking forward to pasta.
On the “heath and well-being” side of things I think it’s pretty safe to say that my body does not appear to have a gluten intolerance of any kind. While I have enjoyed a general rise in my energy level it has not been the dramatic increase that was described to me by those who do have gluten intolerance (which is what I’ve been using as my signpost as to whether or not I’m gluten intolerant. Scientific, I know.). And I’ve also been working out more and eating better so I’m sure that it is contributing to my energy level as well.
Whatever the cause, I’m feeling good and starting my mid-thirties in better shape than my early thirties. 
Today more working out!
See you next time!

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Filed under funnel cake, getting fit, getting old

Insurance: A National Horror?

Do you have health insurance?

Does your job provide it for you?

Do you pay for an individual plan?

Do you know what you get for your money?

How much will you pay out of pocket when you actually have to use it?

Right now Rene and I are shopping for health insurance. My marketing job has options through them and, since we have a business of our own, we have a few business and individual options available outside of that. But none of the options are all that good. Sure they cover things, but not all of it, and there are high deductibles and what the hell is co-insurance?!?

I knew that the health care industry in the United States was sketchy, but after looking at plan options yesterday, even with insurance, you’re still paying 20-50% of a medical bill. Our niece just had a $42,000.00 appendectomy. If they had one of these plans instead of the insurance her parents have as teachers they would have had to pay out of pocket $8, 400.00 – and that’s assuming 20%!

How on Earth is this acceptable?!

I still have a lot of research to do, but I’m ready to hear from you. Do you think about your coverage? Are you worried about the coming rate hikes (all premiums will be rising April 1st, with Anthem, the country’s largest provider, raising prices a whopping 19%!)? Let me know.

There will definitely be a follow up to this one…

See you next time.

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Filed under getting fit, getting old, health, politics

Work Out Vlog 2

Second work out vlog that was actually shot in February, but it was one of the blogs that got stuck in turn around.

It’s here now! And in high definition video!

Maybe I should have reconsidered that.

See you next time!

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Filed under getting fit, video

No Sweets, No Wheats: Today Is Day 1 (Well actually, Day 3)

For four weeks I will be gluten and sweet free.

Not sugar free, “sweet” free.
No honey, no sugar, no agave nectar, no artificial sweeteners, no sweet additive whatsoever.
Why am I doing this, you may ask? The long and the short is this:
  1. Monetary Prize and 
  2. Getting all sexy for the company retreat to Hawaii!
Oh, and I guess being kinder to my body isn’t a bad reason either.
In preparation for these next four weeks I had already started weening myself off of sugar – I stopped adding it to my coffee, put the kibosh on soda pop, lowered the intake of donuts, you know, the usual. But what I didn’t expect was that “weening” and stopping cold turkey would have surprisingly dramatic effects.
This blog was actually due to come out a couple days ago (along with a few others that are sitting here in draft form) – but it didn’t because I was completely listless. It took all of my concentration to work yesterday and then the idea of doing anything beyond that was unthinkable. I had headaches and just didn’t feel like myself.

Now I’m feeling much better.

On the 24th, my last day for food freedom, I did indulge a bit much.

I had a muffuletta from New Orleans:

Photo by Deep Fried Kadzu
A cannoli, also from New Orleans:

Photo by

And some New Orleans King Cake:

I would have taken pictures of the actual items instead of finding these images on the internet, but I ate them all so fast I didn’t have the chance.

Between working out and cutting ALL sugar I’m hoping that the summer beach bod will be in full effect sooner than later.

I’ll update as it’s worth updating.

See you next time!


Filed under challenge, food, getting fit

Over a Month of Being More Fit And What Has It Gotten Me?

I didn’t eat this burger, I prefer my Double-Doubles with lettuce, tomato and grilled onion only. No condiments.

Actually Quite a bit.

I’ve lost five pounds, which I found surprising, and everything else is migrating back to places where they should be as opposed to the weird blubber that was forming around my middle. I have not achieved my goals yet, but things are coming along.

Oh! And I had a cheeseburger the other day! In-N-Out, hence the picture, and it was so good! I had been craving a burger and it felt like more than a junk food craving. It’s possible I am not getting quite enough protein regularly because the burger urge hit a peak and I had to give in. I actually felt better after eating it as opposed to bloated and gross. Not sure if that’s mental or actual, but I’m going with it.

See you next time!

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Filed under getting fit, success

This Is Cool

My friend, Dean, is a pretty neat guy. He’s a graphic designer by trade, but is also a bit of a philosopher, perpetual student of the world and a man willing to experiment on himself. For nearly a decade he has done different year long challenges to test/better himself. Last year he did one creative thing a month. Everything from building furniture to shooting video to shadow puppetry. It’s admirable to see him perform these activities. I highly encourage you follow the links above and check it out.

Yesterday I received a thank you note from Dean for commenting on his blog of the event. It’s silk screened art on some of the paper he made at home. That’s the picture on top.

Have you ever challenged yourself? Maybe not for a whole year, or is that how you treat New Years resolutions? Tell me about it in the comments.

See you next time!

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Filed under art, blatant plug, getting fit, shameless self promotion


New fitness plan = eating better.

Eating better = no fast food.

No fast food = no In-N-Out or Carl’s Jr.

I miss the Double Double and Western Bacon Cheeseburger so much!!!!!!!

My new fitness plan does not restrict these delicacies, I mean I made it up so I’ll eat what I want(!), but for the results I’m trying to get it makes sense to hold off and save the burgers for later.

But I’m feeling the cravings.

Feeling them good.

Oh, delicious, delicious burgers…

See you next time!

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Filed under food, getting fit, western bacon cheeseburger