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First on, last off

IMG_0760.JPGIt’s been a while since I posted to the blog, but mostly because it’s been the most transitional time I’ve experienced since launching Fat Dude.

Long story short, what I’m doing at work has evolved more this year than at year prior in a very satisfying way. Also, the atlas adjustment treatment I’m doing for chronic severe back pain has been effective for the first time in four years. It’s a strange process and an even stranger journey to learn how to keep the adjustment. It’s not something I have really written about much, but I feel positive about this experience for the first time, so I might as well celebrate it.

The secret to holding the adjustment according to the doc is to be free of stress by keeping my mind calm, and tiring out my body by hitting the gym regularly. If not, my physical or mental stress tightens up the muscles around my neck, pushing out of alignment the top bone of my neck, called the atlas. This causes a lot of problems in my body, which are fixed when I’m in adjustment. In my mind, I’ve likened it to a lifebar in a video game and I need to maintain it to feel good. Trying to maintain consistency in being active and making healthy food choices has been my jam in the last month because it has to be.

With consistency in mind and the desire to light light but long so as to reduce the stress on my adjustment, I’ve been working on a full body circuit for lifting, one set of 100, for each machine. The goal is to lift every other day, with cardio days and rest days in between. A workout is better than no workout at all and I’m really enjoying this for now.

In general, I’m at a point. A crossroads of care. Where I finally see the way out, and now I have to push myself forward to get there.

Reminder to self: “Even if you fall on your face, you are still moving forward.”

Nadia says I look like a Ninja Turtle these days because my legs and arms are smaller/slimmer and more toned than before, though my gut’s still hanging on for dear life.

I tell her I’m Michelangelo then, because we both like pizza. Lol.

But I’m back from a great vacation where I made it a point to exercise and stretch almost daily, and I’m ready to keep going. When I don’t take care of myself, it all goes straight to my gut. Now, my gut’s the only thing left to eradicate.

First on, last off.

I’m shedding a mindset. Gaining perspective.

Birthday beef at The Ranch


Nadia took me to The Ranch in Anaheim last night for my birthday and I couldn’t have been happier.

I’ve been wanting to visit what many say is the best steakhouse in Orange County for more than a year and I finally made it for the big 3-1.

Each flavor on the wreath of rolls was delicious, as was the spinach salad with goat cheese, cranberry and candied walnuts.

But the centerpiece of this celebration was definitely the bone-in ribeye for two. I don’t think I’ve had a more succulent, salty, perfectly medium steak in my life.

To finish they hooked me up with a dessert of my choice, so I went with the Twisted Milky Way, essentially a deconstructed take on the classic candy bar that looked like it came from “Top Chef: Just Desserts.”

Perfect meal. Perfect birthday.

Smoothie Test No. 1


I’ve been trying out a bunch of different smoothie variations recently so I figured I’d start documenting them here.

Each recipe made three glasses (I had two, Nadia had one).

Today’s mix:

2 scoops chocolate whey protein powder
4 large handfuls of frozen kale
6 large strawberries
1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1 cup dark chocolate almond milk
2 T flax seed

Overall, pretty tasty. The kale and the chocolate almond milk are both assertive flavors, but the kale wins out, providing a slightly vegetal finish with each sip.

Ready for the week!


I always aim to have food ready for the week, but I usually end up taking all day making multiple dishes and stack up the fridge with huge Pyrex containers that I have to repackage from anyway.

In the effort to tighten up kitchen efficiency, I’ve been trying to perfect my strategy for many weeks, and today it feels like it came together for the first time.

I had a good list at the farmers market and was speedy at Sprouts and Trader Joe’s too. When it came time to cook, I put a bunch of meat on the grill and followed that up with some veggies.

I picked up an extra set of glass containers at Costco so I could cook a bunch of stuff and package it so it’s ready to go all week. Here’s what I packaged for lunches and dinners:

-Garlic marinated shirt steak with baby Yukon gold potatoes

-Chicken marinated in whole grain mustard, honey, smoked paprika and herbs de Provance with green beans

-Oregano and parsley pork chop with oregano-butter grilled carrot

-Soy sauce chicken breast with grilled bok choy

-Chicken soup with shrimp dumplings, bok choy, cabbage, garlic, onion, Fresno chile and shitake mushroom

It’s gonna be a good week!

Moving and shaking. Cooking and grubbing.


There’s one more week to go before the first 90 days of full throttle weight-loss work winds down. I was hoping to post more of a loss this week, but I walked about 15 miles this week and did boxing twice, so I really think I was okay on the exercise.

I did have a beer, a shot, a chocolate chip cookie and a small froyo (with almonds) on various days throughout the week, so next week I’ll cut all that stuff out before I post the next “Fat Dude Report Card” next week.

Nothing much to report. Just moving and shaking. Cooking and grubbing.

As for the scale: Last week I weighed 224.9 lbs. Today, I weigh 224.2 lbs.; a one-week loss of .7 lbs.

I was at my heaviest weight, 267 lbs., in August 2009. That’s a total loss of 42.8 lbs.

Week 30, Meal 2: Super fly stir fry

I complained to Chef Brian when he sent me the vegetarian menu because I’m just the worst when it comes to stir fry. I’ve burned the bottom out of two woks and anything I make in one turns into soy-flavored charcoal.

I borrowed a good wok from my buddy Kevin, all the stars aligned, and I knocked this one out of the park (thanks to a stellar recipe, for sure). The sauce is the star here–tangy, spicy, sweet–and the tofu, slightly crisp from a flash fry in the wok, soaks all of it up.

Here’s Week 30, Meal 2: Veggie-tofu stir fry with umeboshi plum vinegar soy sauce.

Continue reading Week 30, Meal 2: Super fly stir fry

Back on track … and going strong

Today marks the start of my sixth week in the gym. I’m lifting weights, hitting cardio and still eating healthy.

I didn’t want to go too long without weighing in, so here it is. At the end of December I was about 240, so this is a sign that the work I’m putting in is, uh, working.

I’m back on track … and going strong.

I started this blog in Nov. 2010 weighing 258 lbs. Today I weigh 232.3. That’s a total loss of 25.7 lbs.

At this point, hitting the 30 lb.-loss mark isn’t even on my radar. I’m gunning for 40 before Coachella in mid-April.

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