Posts Tagged ‘Fat Sick And Nearly Dead’

The start of day forty-three…  And I only made it to noon.
Morning weight:  319lbs.  No change…
I am still down “54/61”.  As in, 54lbs down from my fasting start weight: 373lbs, and 61lbs down from my highest weight ever (two days before I started Juice Fast I): 380lbs.  Today’s weight is no change from yesterday when I gained 4lbs from my cheat evening (the night before).
Considering yesterday was the first day I EVER registered over 20 miles in steps (over 45K steps) on my FitBit, I was hoping for some kind of decrease.  But, it was not to be.  In all honesty, while not bloated, I do feel like I’m still retaining fluids from the cheat.  Which is what should happen when you suddenly re-introduce salt and / or sugar into your system.  I did both on Thursday evening.  I guess I just wasn’t able to clear them out enough to register a loss by this morning.
Bottom line:  I’ve decided to end this fast for now.  I’ve fasted for a total of 42 out of the last 43 days on a fast which was meant to be a 7 day fast.  Six weeks!  That’s a continuous fast of 41 days plus one more after my “slip / cheat”.  Eleven days longer than the four other “longest” juice fasts I’ve ever done (all those were “only” 30 days).  So, as Joe Cross would say: “Good on ya, mate!”
Reaction:  I have two main reactions, 1) I feel 10 years younger, and, 2) this evening, after my dinner, as I am writing this, I feel slightly bloated.  I did NOT end according to plan.  The plan was to spend six(6) days easing back into food.  I definitely have NOT done that!  I’ve jumped back in with a big salad for lunch and another big salad for dinner.  For dinner, I also had a sausage, a half cup of rice and a cup of pinto beans.  And I washed it down with 24 ounces of water with lemon slices which had been sitting for 24 hours.  When I say “slightly bloated”, it’s my tummy which is just full enough that I am not hungry, but I’m not stuffed either.
Other notes:  I’ve gone from a 54 inch waist to a 48 inch waist.  I’ve gone from barely being able to touch my two middle fingers behind my back to being able to grab either opposite wrist with the other hand (again, behind the back).  I am comfortable doing 5 to 7 laps (5×25 yards) in the local swimming pool in a nice slow breast stroke with minimal stopping time between turn-arounds.  At the start, I could barely do one lap.
So, what’s next?  Well, this week we are planning to join Costco.  While it is a little farther away and less convenient than Safeway, we believe we’ll be able to get a healthier selection of fruits and veggies at a more reasonable cost (even though we will have to buy substantially more at one time).
That’s takes care of the “sourcing”.  But, what’s the plan, you say?
We are currently planning on a modified Dr. Fuhrman, “Eat To Live” two-week plan.  Week One is hard diet (no meat) and week two is the softer (slower weight-loss) diet (meat is included).  We are flipping the weeks to start: soft and then hard; and then we plan to re-cycle through.  My wife will have whatever she wants since she is not strictly joining me on the diet.  She says she will try to stay with me, but no promises.  I said that’s fine.  Every dinner will be a large fresh salad, a half cup of rice and a cup of beans.  We may also have an optional cooked vegetable depending on her mood.  We may also have optional flesh: meat, poultry or fish.  I can only have 4oz of flesh at any meal.  In lieu of “flesh”, if she is making something else for her meal (usually a pasta and chicken dish), I can have a half cup of that.
Lunch will be a medium salad, a half cup of rice, and a cup of beans.  There may also be “something” for a change.  We are not sure what those somethings will be, but we are leaning towards veggie-patties or maybe a bean / beef / oats burger.  Again, the bulk of any meal should come from the salad and the beans.  I like pinto beans (because that’s what I was raised on), but we will alternate / rotate with black-eyed beans and kidney beans.  We will try to keep the salad different by using the various dressing recipes Dr. Fuhrman provides in his book.
Breakfast will primarily be oatmeal made with water or almond milk.  I will add fruit (dates, blueberries, black berries, strawberries and raisins) and nuts (walnuts and / or almonds) instead of sugar.  I will alternate that with the occasional fruit bowl (melon / mango / strawberries / other berries).
Snacks:  My go to snacks will be fresh fruits (apples and bananas or whatever is seasonal), nuts (walnuts, almonds or cashews), or raw veggies (mainly celery and carrots).
Fluids:  I will also use fruit and veggie juices for snacks.  I will try to drink at least 32oz of water (with a little lemon concentrate) – for my kidney stones, cranberry and pomegranate (again for my kidneys), and black cherry juice (for my arthritis).  I will occasionally also make veggie juices for between meals and for evenings.
Finally, cheats:  I am not “planning” a cheat schedule (yet), but I understand human frailty – particularly my own – so I fully expect a “small” cheat once a week or so and a “large” cheat once a month or so.  I expect this will work out over time and will depend on how much I’m losing and how eliminating salt and sugar from my diet progresses.  I do not feel I can / should completely eliminate salt, because I will still need iodine and electrolytes, but I am going to try really hard to minimize the sugars.  We’ll see…  Day by day.
Keep me in your thoughts and prayers.  Namaste!
On This Day In:
2017 And Second By Second
2016 Bakeries And Coffee Shops
2015 Spirit Not Form
2014 Sometimes Even Kneeling Seems Insufficient
2013 Hobgoblins
2012 Got Sleep?
2011 Not Another Barren Corner

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The end of day thirty-one and the start of day thirty-two…
Morning weight:  317lbs.
I am now down “56/63”.  As in, 56lbs down from my fasting start weight: 373lbs, and 63lbs down from my highest weight ever (two days before I started the fast): 380lbs.  Today’s loss is a 1lb loss, down from 318lbs yesterday.
I started this fasting on Friday, 27 July 2018.  Today is Monday, 27 August 2018.  At noon today, I completed a full calendar month of veggie-juice / fruit juice fasting.  I don’t remember if any of my prior 30 day fasts were on thirty day months or if this is a “first” because of the 31 days in July.  Either way, I’m proud of the accomplishment and I’m looking forward to finishing and moving on to the next stage – the lifestyle change and continuing to get healthier.
I gave blood today.  I should get the results sometime Wednesday or Thursday.  I also met with my urologist.  He says it’s confirmed I have a 6mm non-obstructive stone in my left kidney.  He recommends blasting it and trying to shortcut it getting bigger or it trying to come out on it’s own.  He said it’s possible to pass it, but it would be extremely painful.  I said, “Let’s get it done!”  He will try to have it scheduled for next week.  Fingers crossed…  I gave a urine sample while I was at the urologist.  I got the automated results and all tests came back normal and successful.  (So the fasting isn’t affecting my urine.)  This was a bit of a surprise as I have tested positive for blood in my urine for almost 15-20 years.  Trace amounts most of the time, but still positive.  I guess whatever was causing the bleeding has fixed itself for a while.  The urologist also said to stop my aspirin regimen in advance of the procedure next week.  He wants to make sure the aspirin has cleared my system.  I asked about possible clotting and he said he felt it is only a minor risk.  If I go into AFib, the lithotripsy procedure will be canceled.
Last night I watched the movie: “Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead” for a little inspiration.  It worked.  I’m psyched up to make it through the rest of this week.  Again, I have a colonoscopy on Thursday, so the current plan is to continue the fast through Friday and break fast on Saturday, 1 October.
On This Day In:
2017 Start Typing
2016 Just Saying (Nothing)
Thought Of You
Saldaga (“As I’ve Lived”)
2015 A Terrifying Cycle
2014 Rights
2013 Do Bold Things
2012 Seven Causes
2011 I Feel A Tingle Coming On

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Please do NOT take anything I say in this post (or the next few days) as medical advice.  I am NOT a physician or health specialist and have NO formal training in medicine, diet or nutrition.  I do have lots of personal experience dieting (and failing) and losing weight (and finding it again).  Please consult your doctor before you start a diet, work-out plan or any significant change in your physical lifestyle.  A word to the wise should suffice…
Okay…  I have just finished the first 24 hours of my latest cleansing fast.  What is a “cleansing” fast?  Basically, every so often, usually once a year, I go through several days of not “eating” – that is, masticating / chewing.  The longest fasts I’ve been on were 30 days.  I’ve done these four times in my life.  Once (each) in my 20s and 30s and twice in my 50s.  The two early one were veggie broth and herbal tea fasts.  The later (and latter) two were in the last 7 years (I’m currently 63 yrs old).  I’ve also done multiple cleanses of 10 to 21 days during this time frame.  These were not so much to diet as to try to initiate lifestyle changes.  Generally, they work for “a while” (a couple of months), before I slip back into my old ways / habits.  The two long ones were the results of watching the films “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead” (1 and 2).
Procedure:  I run a bunch of veggies through a juicer and drink the results.  This normally results in about two 32oz bottles of “veggie” juice to drink.  It also results in a large amount of “waste” roughage which I sometimes use and sometimes dispose of.  I don’t have a composting area, so if I’m not intending to use the roughage for blending or brothing, I’m afraid I haven’t been able to think of much else to do with it.  When I am just intending to juice for a day or up to three, I toss it.  If I’m intending to go longer, I keep it.
My current plan is to go for a week and see how I feel.  As such, I’m holding onto the roughage to use in a blend.  As I mentioned, “my” cleanses tend to be both veggie juice and veggie / fruit blends.  I try to go about two and three days of each, alternating.  I do this because I’m not a big fan of enemas and after two days of just veggie juice, I don’t have anything solid to pass.  The alternating between juicing and blending seems to work for me to keep the plumbing working (to put it politely) comfortably.  So, no, I’m not doing “pure” fasting.
Dieting / Weight-Loss:  I personally do NOT believe juicing (the way I do it) is an effective form of dieting or of losing weight and keeping it off.  Why not?  Because the normal adult body holds about 5 to 7 pounds of food “in processing” at any time.  You eat.  It works it way through your system.  You poop.  That 5-7 pounds is the “in system” stuff.  When you (I) begin the juicing, the first couple of days is getting rid of all of this.  This means I normally drop 7 pounds in the first three to four days of a juice fast.  This is NOT true weight loss, because as soon as I eat an apple or salad coming off the fast, the weight is right back there in my stomach being processed.  Interestingly, this period also roughly corresponds with the snarky, tired, miserable mood period most people experience when they start a juice fast.  It is only after this initial period that I begin to lose real weight.
On my last 10 day fast (just juice), I lost 20 pounds.  Thirteen if you discount the stomach weight.  On my last 20 day fast (juice and blend), I lost 25.  On my last 30 day fast (juice and blend), I lost 30 pounds.  Again, you’d have to subtract 7 pounds to get the real weight (18 and 23, respectively).  There is a law of diminishing returns – for me anyway.  It starts to fall off more slowly once I get past the 15 day mark.  I’ve never averaged less than a pound per day over the course of a fast.  But, I’ve also never had a “really” long fast (over 30 days).
So, what’s the difference between “blending” and “brothing”?  Blending (for me) is using either water or purchased fruit juice in a blender with the roughage to make a “smoothie”, which I then drink.  Brothing is simply boiling water with the roughage to make broth.  You boil for a few minutes and then pour the mixture through a sieve to get the vegetable broth.  It’s pretty good on a cold winter day and vaguely stirs memories of eating stew (“scouse”) – but only VERY vaguely.  LOL.  A couple of points to mention: 1)  I try to use the roughage within two days (unless it’s been frozen); and, 2) brothing boils away a lot of the water soluble vitamins which were left after the juicing process and leaves very little soluble fiber.
And a few closing points, in addition to my regular heart meds (I suffer from irregular / non-symptomatic AFib), I also take a regular one-a-day type of multi-vitamin pill, a one-a-day D3 (specific) vitamin pill and three fish-oil pills.  I walk our family dog (almost) every day, for at least 1/2 hour (about 1 mile) and I try to do some other form of exercise.  In the summer (starting this year), it’s been treading water, which I do for an hour.  I’m currently averaging about three times per week on this.
Finally, long term weight loss (and keeping it off / maintenance) is about making a lifestyle change, not just getting through a cleansing fast.  Having said that, every thing you do to make yourself healthier – no matter how small – is a good step on the way to being just that – healthier.  So, I’m starting today and I’ll try to provide daily updates to let you know how it’s going.  Wish me luck…
On This Day In:
2017 Effective Stimuli
2016 Dave’s Not Here, Man
2015 Blink
2014 The Struggle To Educate America Continues…
2013 On Elections
2012 Warm Smiles
Pick Your Poison
2011 Straight Shooters

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Day 8

Today is day 8 of my latest “juice / blend” fast.  So far, I’ve only cheated twice: I had a handful of strawberries today and a couple of slices of watermelon last Monday (well, Monday or Tuesday).  I am trying to be strict, but I’m not going to let myself be fanatical to the point where I beat myself up over a little fruit.
This first week has been “just” juice: the blend was 2 spinach, 1 onion, 2 cucumbers, 2 heads of broccoli, and 2 bunches of celery.  I run it through my juicer and discard the pulp.  Week two will be with pulp re-added.  I mix the veg-juice with unfiltered apple juice, orange juice and pineapple juice.  Obviously, this is already not a “strict” unprocessed juice fast.  But, it’s probably as close as I’ll ever get.  This is probably my millionth time trying to lose weight and “probably” this is at least my dozenth time trying to lose via juicing and / or blending.  My first was several years ago when I first watched the documentary: “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead“.  I’ve done one juice fast for 30 days and a couple for 20 days.  And, of course, loads of 3, 4, or 5 day cleanses.  They were all successful for their duration, but I’ve always gone back to my old ways and yo-yo’d back up the scale past where I began.
Why will this time be different?  I don’t really think it will…  Unless, …
There is one major variable:  I retire at the end September!  Hopefully, between the de-stressing and the new found time, I’ll have a better chance to stick with a program to regain and then build a healthy future.  Now, my current plan is not to fast for the entire month.  I’m only planning to go to next Saturday (09/09/2017).  Then, I will evaluate how I feel and see if I want to push on or just switch to a more normal lifestyle / diet.
My long term plan is to eat better, to eat well and to eat for wellness.  For me, this will mean making better lifestyle (sleep, fluids, activity) as well as food choices.  My keys will be “Fresh” and primarily “Plant-based“.  I am a flesh-eater and I always will be, but, I will limit myself to two flesh days a week.  The other five days, flesh can (should be) only be used for flavoring.  And, unfortunately, the same will be true for grains, pastas, breads and desserts.

Day 8 of my latest juice fast

Day 8 of my latest juice fast

Starting Date: 26 August 2017
Starting Weight: 378 lbs
Current Date: 2 September 2017
Current Weight: 365 lbs
Weight Loss To Date: 13 lbs
On This Day In:
2016 Paying Attention
2015 An Awful Ordeal
2014 What Are You Doing?
2013 Lives > 1
2012 Strange To All The World
2011 Unnecessary Stagefright

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Last weekend I wrote my review (Nerd Heard – And Good-Bye) of the documentary “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead”.  I mentioned at the end of the blog that I’d gone out and purchased a blender and was now (then) off to buy some fruits and vegetables.
Well, today I’m finishing day seven of my juicing fast/diet.
Observations and comments:
To start off with I’m definitely thinner.  I’ve been having 64oz of fruit juice, 64oz of vegetables juice and at least 48oz of water each day.  The fruit juice is mostly apples (red and green), a lemon, carrots, grapes, strawberries and cherries.  I tried using bananas, but I used two giant bananas and got about four drops of juice.  The rest just ended up as cast off in the pulp.  (More on this later.)  The juice isn’t what I would normally call “sweet”, but it is “fruity” tasting.
The vegetable juice is just that – greens, greens and more greens (at least it looks that way).  Basically, various kinds of kale, spinach, red lettuce, beetroot, mushrooms, ginger, onions (red and white), radishes, a couple of apples (red) and some whole lemons.  This is surprising filling, but does not seem to provide an energy boost (as I expected). Instead, I’m feeling a sense of heat flush on my skin – mostly my arms – after drinking some.
For both types I’m tending to drink about four or five swallows and then a little water as a chaser to clean the palate a bit.
Yesterday, after work Hil and I went to a new grocery in the area which has a tremendous turnover of fruits and veg and we stocked up.  Probably too much as I made three jars – one juice and two veg – and I’m on my second jar now.  I also made a change to the straight forward juicing by making a smoothie with the fruit.  I bought a large hand of bananas and switched to the blender instead of the juicer for the fruit jar.
Weight-loss wise I’m doing fine.  Not outrageous, just fine.  I estimate I’ve dropped between 8 and 12 pounds.  I’m not entirely accurate because I started with a clothes off weight of 339lbs the Friday before the fast and now I’m a clothes on weight of 334lbs.  I had a “big” drop of three pounds during the week when I developed the runs on Tuesday.  My understanding is that is a normal experience of combining fruit and vegetable fasting.  I don’t recall the experience in my other earlier fasts, but that’s probably because they were so long ago.
This is my fourth fast.  I did it three other times for 30 days each when I was in my mid 20’s and 30’s, so it’s been over 25 years since my last time.  Back then I did fruit smoothies and vegetable broth.  This current version is much more fiber free on the fruit and uncooked on the vegs.  As I said, each time was for 30 days and each time I lost at least 30 pounds.  This fast is only partly about losing weight.  Mostly, it’s about cleansing out my system and any weight loss is an added benefit.
My ultimate goal is to get to a “flesh” meal not more than twice a week.  Other than that, I’ll be trying to stick to as much raw fruits and vegs as possible.
I haven’t been doing any working out for the past week.  My gall stones have been pretty bad and I’ve had to start work early so I’ve not been going to the gym (at work).  I’ve got three doctors appointments this coming week, so I will probably get only two days in at the gym.  I’m mostly a high-energy morning person and between that and the juicing, I don’t feel like I have much energy to even go for walks at the end of the day.  I will say my gall stone pain is a lot better this week than is was last week, so hopefully the juicing has been helping that as well.
One final comment: I’m struck by the large volume of waste at the end of the juicing process.  Even though it feels mostly dry, it seems as if it’s immoral to discard that much roughage.  I think when I ultimately come off of the juicing mode, I’ll feel a lot better (“hippy conscious” wise) about eating (and enjoying) the whole fruit/plant.
Movie Review Time:
This week started off with “Breakfast At Tiffany’s” made in 1961.  Not much to say, really.  It’s a classic, old-Hollywood style, romantic comedy (lite-comedy, not HA HA comedy).  The movie stars Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard.  The movie is a feast for those with an eye to 60’s style – particularly the narrow black ties, which would now be a fashion statement.  One thing I found amusing is how much the young Peppard resembles Dan Stevens – the Matthew Crawley character in the British series “Downton Abbey“.  They’re doppelgängers!!  Truly one of those few movies you can say (at the end): “Wow! That was a classic!!”
The second movie I watched this weekend was the DVD of “Deliverance” from 1972.  This is another “classic” movie.  This one stars Jon Voight, Burt Reynolds, Ronny Cox and Ned Beatty as four “city folk” who decide to go on a river canoeing adventure over a weekend.  The adventure quickly devolves into a survival movie and morality play.  The movie is still (after 40 years) too intense for children due to its “famous” male rape scene and its fairly graphic death scenes – so it’s also not for the squeamish.  To my mind, the closest comparison to any film I’ve seen recently and remember as a classic is “The Deer Hunter” which was made in 1978.  I’m not sure why “Deliverance” reminded me of “The Deer Hunter“, but it did.  Yes, they both had a “hunting of deer” scene in each, but it was more than that. I think it was that each tried (with varying degrees of success) to capture a moment in American history.  As a movie, I enjoyed “Deliverance” much more than “The Deer Hunter“, but neither were particularly believable.
The third movie was “Shoot ‘Em Up” with Clive Owen, Paul Giamatti and Monica Bellucci.  I like Owen.  I’ve never liked Giamatti.  And, I’ve never heard of Monica Bellucci.  This is really a terrible movie!  The title is the plot.  I think I was hoping for something a little like one of the “Die Hard” series, but nope, just a bad action movie.  Completely unbelievable characters.  The ONLY redeeming factor was the occasional one liner from Owen.  But, they are not enough to save this movie.  Now that I own it, I’d probably watch it again to see if there’s anything of value I didn’t notice in the first viewing, but I would not watch it if it was on TV and I had to sit through commercials too.
Finally, there’s “Righteous Kill” starring Robert DeNiro and Al Pachino.  This is kind of a geezer-buddy-cop movie.  It’s two NYC cops trying to catch a serial killer.  Anything more pretty much gives away the movie.  A lot of (mostly) unnecessary “effing and blinding” (as we say used to say in England), but all in all, a pretty good movie.  I wouldn’t say it was in either of the lead actors great roles lists, but it was interesting seeing them together.

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This week was kind of a potpourri of mostly great entertainment:  I started off the week with an episode of Downton Abbey – exceptional British drama on PBS.  It’s the second season and the future heir is off to the trenches of France.  If you haven’t seen season one (and now, season two), you don’t know what you’re missing…

I finally got around to watching my DVD copy of “Green Lantern“.   I saw the movie in the theater back in June and my review (“In Brightest Day…“) was positive.  I’m a bit undecided on if the DVD translates to the smaller screen as well as some other grand-scale movies, but I think it’s pretty favorable.  I’m not sure why, but the movie seemed longer than I remembered it being in the theater – but it had also had a lot more action than I remember.  I’m not sure about Ryan Reynolds (the lead).  Some times he seemed to fit the character perfectly, and others, nope – don’t buy it at all.  The female love interest is played by Blake Lively, who seemed familiar, but I couldn’t place at all until I looked her up.  She was in the “Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants” movie, which I have seen but don’t recall.  I just remember her being a soccer player or something.  Anyway, now she reminds me of a young Jennifer Connally – meaning the camera loves her.  Hopefully, she can get some serious roles and we’ll find out if she has real chops or not.  I’m not sure if we’ll ever say that about Reynolds.  He’s in his mid-30’s now, so if he doesn’t start playing some serious roles soon, I’m not sure he ever will.  All in all, I still give the movie a favorable review and will watch it again soon. 

One other comment on Reynolds.  I saw him opposite Sandra Bullock in “The Proposal“, and I thought he did very well in that role too.  Unfortunately, I’d say that role was more comedic than serious.  Not that a comic-book hero is comedic or serious, but you know what I mean…

On Wednesday I went for my first walk/slow jog in ages at the gym at work.  It felt so good I came home and watched “The Jericho Mile” again (see my review).  Still a great little made for TV movie.  Still inspirational.  Kudos to Michael Mann and Peter Strauss!!

Friday night I watched the two-hour ending of the TV series “Chuck“.  I remember watching this series when it first started five years ago.  It was the funniest (Nerd Herd), best written, sexiest (Sarah Walker), spy-spoof (Jeffster saves the General), crime-fighting series I’d seen in ages.  The finale crystalized in my mind the fallacy that nerds are socially inept loners.  In fact, nerds do herd!  And in herding, nerds gather strength.  (They also become even more nerdier…)  In the end, it took the whole team – including the Jeffster – to defeat evil and save the world as we know it (or want it to be) – a happy ending for the nerds.

Full disclosure time: way back in the second season, when it looked like the show was going to be cancelled, I was one of the fans who went to Subway (well, actually three Subways), bought a sandwich and asked the store manager to let the company know I liked their support of “Chuck” and hoped they’d keep the show on the air.  Two had no idea what I was talking about.  They didn’t even know Subway had product placement in the series!!  The third said he’d already had several people stop in and ask for him to support “Chuck” with a message to the head company. 

Power to the nerds!!!

Last night, I also watched a documentary on diet and health titled: “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead“.  It’s an excellent movie about how we are killing ourselves with the food we eat.  Dr. Joel Fuhrman, of “Eat To Live” fame, plays a prominent role in the movie explaining how we’re killing ourselves and how we can make a recovery.  The “interesting” thing to me is that his book says you need to eat the fruit and vegetables to get their goodness, but the movie says you can do it by simply juicing them.  My “gut-feeling” is (pun intended) that the book is correct and the movie less so, but still reasonably healthy.  To make a long story shorter, today I went out and bought a juicer.  Now the next step is …

Off to the store to get my fruit and veggies.

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