Monday, August 29, 2022

100 Day Challenge: Week Six Complete

 Time to Refocus!

Day 36: Monday, August 22nd 

It's just over NINE weeks until birthday! This challenge is going fast. I started out great and lost weight really quick. I was so motivated and doing so well. Then - Vacation. It's been going downhill ever since and it's nobody's fault but mine. 

This morning, I got on the scale and I was 192 lbs. I was 188 prior to vacation and I gained some weight which was to be expected. But last week, I just did, ate and drank whatever the hell I wanted and this morning, the scale said ENOUGH. I'm going backwards!

I skipped breakfast. J wasn't hungry at all. But by lunch I already had dropped the ball. I was on the road and I had a cheeseburger, onion rings, Pepsi (but only took 2 sips and threw it out...I do not like pepsi) and a strawberry Sundae from Dairy Queen. Curse you $7 meal deal!! 

I also had a Coke and a Strawberry/Dark Chocolate Kit-Kat bar. Why? I have no idea. I was still upset about last week and rather than be good...I had the attitude of what difference will it make? That's fine once in a while. But not ALL the time as I've been doing the last two weeks. My motivation lasted a total of 4 hours this morning. WTF???

For dinner, I got back on track and had Chick Fil-a, but I only had a grilled chicken sandwich. No fries. No drink other than water. 

Day 37: Tuesday, August 23rd 

Breakfast: Two slices of pumpernickel bread with onion-chive cream cheese.

Lunch: Ice cream sandwich. Don't judge. There was nothing in the house I wanted to go to the effort to make. 

Dinner: Pistachio crusted Salmon with parmesan potatoes    

Exercise: No exercise

Day 38: Wednesday, August 24th

Breakfast: two pieces of pumpernickel bread with onion-chive cream cheese

Lunch: A can of sardines in olive oil on two pieces of sourdough bread. 

Dinner: I made Orzo with shrimp, spinach, tomatoes, olives and feta. It was really easy to make too..  Here's the recipe: It says to serve cold, but I couldn't wait and it was really good warm. In fact, I preferred it to the cold version which I had about an hour later when I went back for seconds.

Exercise: No exercise

Day 39: Thursday, August 25th

Breakfast: Two pieces of pumpernickel bread with onion-chive cream cheese.

Lunch: leftover orzo with shrimp, feta, olives, spinach & tomatoes. I also had an ice cream sandwich... again. Which is good honestly, because now they are all gone. No more temptation.

Dinner: Tilapia (breaded) with perogies and Brussel sprouts.

Exercise: No exercise

Day 40: Friday, August 26th

I finally broke 192 lbs where I've been stuck all week. I was 191.8 this morning. Heavier than before vacation, but at least I'm trending downward. On vacation I wasn't running like I wanted to, but I was active. Since I've been back, I've just been sitting at my desk working all the time. Not to mention eating whatever for most of it. Tomorrow will be 60 days left of my challenge. Still plenty of time to turn things around. 

Breakfast: Two pieces of pumpernickel bread. One with onion-chive cream cheese and the other with butter.

Lunch: Two Belvita breakfast biscuit packages. One coconut and one cinnamon. 

Dinner: Outback Steakhouse. I had the small ribeye, loaded baked potato and seasonal veggies. I did have a few cheese fries w/ranch, but not many. I had a glass of wine.

Exercise: No Exercise

Day 41 Saturday, August 27th 

I skipped breakfast again today. But guess what?! I went for a 3.99 mile run/walk along a new greenway section. I had to walk several times after the first mile but it felt so good to be out there again. After the first mile, I would walk a minute if I had to, and then would try to run again for as long as could. It was very hot and my legs were super heavy. after a couple of times of walking a minute and then trying to run again, I changed it and told my self I had to run 500 steps with my left or right foot. This is a great method by the way because you get lost in the counting and forget about the running part. It's very hypnotic. I ran 500 steps (only counting one foot) and then walked a minute and I repeated this two times. I then did 600 steps and a minute walk and then I finished with 800 steps. 

For lunch, I had two huge glasses of water and a can of chicken  (think of a can of tuna, but substitute chicken). I had a little mayo with it. It was not good. Very bland but it's all I felt like. I usually don't have much of an appetite after I run. 

For dinner I had a citrus-lime burrito with lettuce, beans and cheese for dinner. I only had water to drink. 

Day 42: Sunday, August 28th. 

I got up this morning and skipped breakfast. 

My wife and I went for a waterfall drive/hike. But before any waterfalls, we went to Judaculla Rock in Sylva, NC. It's a really cool soap stone with ancient Cherokee carvings that date back anywhere from 300-1500 years. One waterfall, Bridal Veil Falls is right at the road. In fact, you can usually drive behind it but today they had barriers up. Not sure why. 

We then went to Dry Falls which is not dry at all. It's a huge 80 foot waterfall with a huge flow coming down. Here, you can park and take a short walk down a path and again, go behind the falls. 

The last fall was Cullasaja Falls which is a little hard to find. There's a small pull=off on the side of the road that could fit 3-4 cars. You can see the falls from the road or you can be very adventurous and a little death-defying and go down what resembles a cross between an old trail and a landslide. But we made it the bottom. Check back and I'll have added some pictures if you don't see them. The hike was only about .2 miles down but it was grabbing onto rocks, tree stumps, or whatever else you could grab ahold of to keep your balance or to catch yourself when you started sliding. Coming back up was actually much easier than I thought it would be. Only had to grab and pull up on rocks, trees a couple of times. 

We stopped at a little gem mine/gift shop nearby and I did get a Cheer Wine soda when we bought some magnets of the various falls we saw that morning.

For lunch...or really brunch, we stopped at a cute little place called the Quirky Bird in Dillsboro, NC. I had a mimosa and a breakfast burrito with a side of fruit. 

For dinner, we went out to eat to a Hawaiian theme restaurant. I had a Cuban sandwich and onion rings. I wanted the fish, but they were out of all the fish. I know, right? So weird. I also had about 3 glasses of water and a Mai Tai drink which was very strong. I should not have had it but it just sounded really good after a day of hiking and driving for hours to all the waterfalls. I then had a mango flavored soft serve ice cream for dessert and a later on at home a tiny Fresca. I think they are 6.5 ounce cans. 

My only real change this week looking back was that I ran yesterday and hiked today. I don't think my weekly weigh in tomorrow is going to be very good. 

Monday, August 22, 2022

100 Day Challenge: Week Five Complete

Vacation is Over

Day 29: Monday, August 15th

Well, I'm back from vacation. I started my trip at 188.2.  This morning, I weighed myself and I was 193. While I'm upset about gaining back five pounds, it's honestly not too bad to go on vacation, pretty much eat whatever and drank whatever I wanted and only gain 5 pounds. But I'm back now and it's time to refocus!

I skipped breakfast, but for lunch, I had two eggs. We have NO food in the house since we were gone. For dinner, I went to Chick Fil-A and ordered the grilled Chicken Club sandwich. No Fries. No soda. However, when I got home, they had given me the breaded chicken version. 

I did not run this morning as I was so dead from waking up early every day for the past week and then driving all day yesterday. 

Day 30: Tuesday, August 16th

Super tired again today so I slept in rather than run. I had a late breakfast around 10 a.m. of Siggi's Vanilla Yogurt. I didn't mix anything in. Sometime's I'll slice a banana into it, but not today. I also had two slices of sourdough bread with butter. 

For lunch, I had a Steak-Umm sandwich with A-1 sauce on sourdough bread (the only bread in the house obviously).

For dinner, we had tacos. I had 3 ground beef, peppers, onions and cheese tacos with a little lime salsa from Aldi's. I also had a veggie taco just to finish off the peppers and onions.

I did get a little snack-ish at work so I ate a serving of Cheez-it crackers or whatever you would call them...which is about 27 of them. 

Day 31: Wednesday, August 17th

Did I run this morning? No! WTF is wrong with me. I didn't beat myself up too much because I was sure I'd run after work. Did that happen? Hell No! My motivation is just in the toilet. I seem to be losing weight without the running which is good in a way...but I think it does kill some of the motivation. I am not a morning person. I much prefer to run after work. But this week has been super busy with ballot proofing for the upcoming election this November that I'm just braindead after work and just want to crash. 

I skipped breakfast today. My usual routine. Sometimes I just get hungry in the morning and I can't figure out why the change. Usually, I just have no appetite in the a.m.

For lunch, I finished off my steak-umms and had a sandwich on sourdough with a little BBQ sauce to snazzy it up. 

I had some work day snacks of a banana and a serving of cheez-its. 

For dinner, I made Shrimp and Chicken Sausage Jambalaya. I don't cook too often. My wife is the much better cook. 

Day 32: Thursday, August 18th

I did not run this morning. In fact, I was tied to my desk most of the day. And not in a good way. LOL. But seriously, my exercise this week has been non-existent. I need to get back into something...anything...this weekend. 

I had Siggi's Vanilla yogurt and some dried cranberries for breakfast. For lunch, I had a bowl of chili with beans. Dinner was probably too much. I made this garlic pasta with bread crumb crumbles mixed in and added salmon to it. It was really good but I had two big servings. One serving was plenty...but it was just so good. I did have some cheez-its for a snack.

Day 33: Friday, August 19th

I skipped breakfast. I was on the road today for about 3 hours total. The county I visited for work had a catered lunch with chicken salad on a croissant, a pasta salad, bag of Doritos and a coconut blondie/brownie dessert thing that was so good. I did stick to water though and skipped the sweet tea. I also had a krispy kreme donut and 2 Ghirardelli sea salt caramels when I got there. 

For dinner, we got take out. I had a cheeseburger, fries and had a glass of wine. I then baked brownies, but I had only one. 

No exercise. I thought about it. Too bad "it's the thought that counts" doesn't apply to exercise.

Day 34: Saturday, August 20th

I actually had breakfast today. A piece of sourdough bread with butter and a fried egg. For lunch, I had a Culver's basic burger, onion rings and a chocolate malt. I also had some cheese curds from their, but just a few. I did try a piece of bourbon chocolate that was really good, but just stuck to the one piece. 

For dinner, we got Indian food to go. I had the Chicken Tika with rice. 

No exercise.

Day 35: Sunday, August 21st

First thing this morning, we hiked the Joyce Kilmer Forest in Graham County, NC.

I skipped breakfast and ate a late lunch of leftover chicken Tikka and rice. For dinner, I had steamed pork dumplings from a Chinese place nearby. It felt really good to get outside after being behind a desk all week. 

Not looking forward to the weigh tomorrow. I know I gained weight the week of vacation and this week, I didn't do a good job of working on my diet. I pretty much ate anything and everything I wanted!

Tomorrow, I refocus! I will not give up because of two bad weeks.

Monday, August 15, 2022

100 Day Challenge: Week Four Complete

Week Four of the 100 Day Challenge

Day 22: Monday, August 8th

Today is Monday, August 8th and it was a crazy day. It was great for exercise. Not so great with eating. At least I don't think it was...

I skipped breakfast. Except for that weird week early on where I kept waking up starving, I'm back to my usual self with no appetite in the morning. My wife and I set out on a four mile hike, but it turns out that the four miles was actually a one-way figure. Our actual hike with the different trails we took ended up being 7.25 miles. It was 93 degrees and the "feels like" temperature was 102! I was sweating like crazy, but it was a beautiful hike at First Landing State Park in Virginia Beach. 

For lunch, we went out for seafood, because you have to have seafood when you're at the beach, right? It also happened to be happy hour when we got there at 3 p.m. ( a very late lunch and the first thing I ate all day). I had an orange crush bar drink. To eat, I had Four steamed oysters, a little bit of crab dip, and a fried flounder po' boy and french fries. I then split a small piece of Key Lime pie 3 ways: me, my wife and my step-daughter so I don't feel too bad about that. 

For dinner, we ate in and cooked at our in-laws. I had a small pasta dish with chicken sausage and some asparagus with grape tomatoes and kalamata olives for a side dish. 

I'm hoping the fried fish and french fries I had at lunch didn't do too much damage to my progress. I need to be better. I will be better. 

Day 23: Tuesday, August 9th

I ran on Sunday and hiked 7.25 miles in extreme heat yesterday. I wanted to take today off to recover, so I just went out and walked for 25 minutes. Here's what I had for meals & snacks:

Breakfast: Polenta w/cheese and a piece of zucchini bake, which reminded me of a quiche.

Lunch: For lunch I went a little crazy. We went to the mall and they had an Applebee's in the food court. I had a cheeseburger, fries and a beer...but a small one.

Dinner: I had some leftover pasta with chicken from yesterday. 

Snacks: I had two cokes today...TWO...and a small bowl of popcorn while we watched TV. I'm mad about the cokes

Day 24: Wednesday, August 10th

Today, I skipped breakfast and instead went for a two hour kayak adventure. It was so nice, but man, what an arm & shoulder workout!

For lunch I ate cheese and crackers and some hummus. I also had a coke and a boston cream donut. 

For dinner, I ate an Oyster Po Boy and a few fries (not even half) with a bottle of water to drink. I then had a coke later on which I was (once again) not too happy with myself.

Day 25: Thursday, August 11th

In an effort to work off the donut and a half I had yesterday and the cokes, I skipped breakfast and went for a trail run for 47 minutes. It was hot, and my legs felt like lead. After a mile, I had to walk for a minute. After a brief run, I had to walk again. Rather than get frustrated, I just changed my run to a series of intervals. I ran hard for a minute and walked for a minute to recover. I did this the rest of the way for about 2.2 miles.

For lunch, I had fish, green beans and mashed potatoes but no gravy (they were out) at IKEA. 

For dinner, I had IKEA meatballs that we brought home, peas, & mashed potatoes and this time...gravy.

For a snack, I had two small cookies and a coke. WHY CAN'T I STOP DRINKING THESE??? 

Day 26: Friday, August 12th

Today, I skipped breakfast and walked on the beach for quite some time. I'm not sure how long or how far as I didn't take my watch or my phone. I also swam but just a little bit. Not enough to really call it exercise by any means, but it was nice to see if I still had it in me to swim.

For lunch, we went to an all day breakfast place and I had three eggs, hash browns, two sausage patties and some spiced apples. I had passion fruit to drink.

At dinner, I had a date with my wife. And a date we had! We went to a winery and got a flight of wine. Five different wines to taste (each) which was about 2 glasses they said. We liked one of the wines so much we got a bottle which was about another two glasses worth. We then had a charcuterie  board, a steak flat bread (like a pizza) and a beet salad.

Day 27: Saturday, August 13th

Today I skipped breakfast, and had leftover meatballs and mashed potatoes and gravy for lunch. I also had two potato pancakes...also from IKEA.

For dinner, I had a fried flounder Po Boy, french fries and an orange crush drink (alcohol) from the bar. For dessert, we split a piece of Key Lime pie 3 ways. 

During the day, I also had a Coke and I tried a pineapple cider, which was pretty good. I have to stop being on vacation! All this fried food, desserts and sodas can not be helping my weight loss!

I'm trying to be smart and I started out that way. But these last few days I've gone off the wagon with fried foods, drinks and all the stuff I love. I will get back on track after vacation.

We did go the aquarium so I did walk today...although it was slow and meandering as I watched the fish swim all around the giant tanks.

Day 28: Sunday, August 14th

Today we headed home. My wife's family made us omelettes, italian breakfast sausage (I had 2) and coffee cake...of which I had two pieces. 

We then packed up the car and left. We stopped at Sonic for lunch and I had a cheeseburger, tots and a bottle of water. I also grabbed some peanut M&Ms at the gas station for a snack. I did have a can of Coke that we took from her parents house. The last one they had bought me. I felt obligated in some weird way. But that was the only one I had this day and it will be the last!

For dinner, I had Chipotle. I had a Carnitas burrito bowl with white rice, black beans, salsa, cheese and guacamole.

I stared vacation at 188.2. Where did I end? I am not sure. I'll learn tomorrow how much of a setback vacation was. 

Monday, August 8, 2022

100 Day Challenge: Week Three Complete

 Week Three of 100 Day Challenge Complete 

Well, yesterday was the end of week 3 of my 100 Day Challenge. Unfortunately, I started Vacation on Saturday and I am without a scale. As a result, I am unable to give a weigh in as of this morning. I can say that Saturday morning, just before leaving, I weighed in at 188.2. Remember, I started at 197.2 so as of Saturday, I was down 9 lbs exactly. An average of 3 pounds per week. 

Being on vacation and trying to eat better is really a challenge but I'm trying. Exept for today...I went off the rails, but that's OK. I'll get back on track. As you'll see, I think I'll be OK. Let's get into the details shall we?

Day 15 - Monday, Aug 1

This morning, I skipped breakfast which as you know is my usual routine. For lunch, I had siggi’s, yogurt and a banana, while I was making a steak-umm sandwich on protein bread.

For dinner, I had a steak burrito with black beans, rice, cheese & guacamole along with a bottle of water. 

As for activity, I didn't do anything today. It was a crazy day and it just got away from me. 

Day 16 - Tuesday, Aug 2nd

This morning, I skipped breakfast and had a Godfather's personal pan pizza & a bottle of water for lunch. For dinner, I cooked and had Spaghetti & meatballs, a Caesar salad & water to drink.

I did cave at the grocery store while shopping and got a Coke Zero. I was just so hot and really wanted a cold drink. As you know, I'm not a big fan of Coke Zero due to the aspartame, but I wasn't wanting the sugar either. 

For exercise, I didn't run. But I did do 10 curls & 10 overhead presses with 20lb dumbbells.

Day 17 - Wednesday, Aug 3rd

I skipped breakfast. For lunch I had a Dave’s single classic and a bottle of water from Wendy's. For dinner, I had leftover Spaghetti & meatballs (a very small amount of leftovers) and a steak-umm sandwich on 1slice of sourdough bread.

For exercise, I again did my 10 curls & 10 overhead presses with 20lb dumbbells.

Day 18 - Thursday, Aug 4th

Per usual, I skipped breakfast. For lunch, I had a steak-umm on 1 slice of sourdough bread. For dinner, I had 2 fish tacos, a few chips & queso, and water to drink. I also had 4 Nilla wafers, 2 peaches and a Belvita chocolate cookie type thing. I'm not sure what they are as they are snacks my step-daughter has. She decided she doesn't like the chocolate ones though so I thought I'd try them. 

For exercise, I changed it up and did 15 push ups & 25 squats.

Day 19 - Friday, Aug 5th

I skipped breakfast. For lunch, I had a Dave’s single classic and a bottle of water from Wendy's. Yes, this is a repeat of just the other day. But what can I say. I like them. I had 8 Nilla wafers for a snack as well as a slice of Sourdough toast with butter while we figured out dinner plans. For dinner, I had 4 slices of cauliflower crust cheese pizza with kalamata olives.

I did not do any activity but I plan on really increasing this on vacation which starts tomorrow!

Day 20 - Saturday, Aug 6th - Vacation Begins!

I am nervous about being on vacation. It's so hard to eat right or even better when I have to eat out even more than I already do. But good news! I weighed in this morning at 188.2...NINE pounds down from where I started! 

Today, I was in the car for about 7 hours so I did not exercise at all when I got to Virginia. 

Here's a summary of what I ate today:

We stopped at a Korean market and I had half of a desert-type thing. It's like waffle batter with Nutella  filling in the shape of a fish. It was really good. For lunch, I had two 2 arepas. One was chicken and the other was salmon. I also had black beans and a couple of plantains as a side. For dinner, I had homemade Shepherds pie & a salad. I regret to say that I did have not one....but TWO Cokes. My in=laws bought them just for me, it was insanely hot when we got here and I really REALLY wanted one. But one was so good that I had another later with dinner. 

Day 21 - Sunday , Aug 7th

I woke up this morning and wanted to get to work. As a result, even though it was crazy hot, I ran 2.4 miles and then walked 25 minutes as a cool down. 

Upon returning, my in-laws had made breakfast. I had an apple pancake thing made with eggs, milk, cinnamon, and sliced apples. It was really tasty but I only had one slice. For lunch, we went out and I did have a Mimosa to drink. To eat, I had a crab ball and a fried oyster melt. It was so hot, that we stopped at Kohrs Bros ice cream and I had a small orange/vanilla cone.

Later at night, my wife and I went on a walk for 25 minutes which was still hot, but much nicer than it had been earlier in the day.

Unfortunately, I don't have a scale that I can use to weigh in so I will have to try hard to stay on track. I have to cut down on fried foods and find a way to cut out these sodas. They are my kryptonite. 

Monday, August 1, 2022

100 Day Challenge: Second Week Complete

 Well, I didn't run this week but I did keep busy. I got up this morning and was a little worried I had overindulged this weekend so I really didn't know what the scale was going to say. Turns out, the activity and the eating I did do actually worked. 

I weighed in this morning at 189.2 lbs! Remember, I started at 197.2 originally and last week I was 193.2 lbs., so I'm down 8 pounds in two weeks. As I mentioned before, I suspect my weight loss will start to slow down. I don't expect to lose 4 pounds each week, nor do I necessarily want to. As I've said before, more than 2 pounds per week typically means you're losing muscle as well and I don't want to do that. Here's a summary of what I did this week:

Day 8 - Monday, July 25th (Start of Week Two)

I had mentioned in my last post that I was on the road this day. But just to keep the weeks together, I'll recap.  The county I was in had Mellow Mushroom Pizza for lunch. I only had one slice, and man that was a bit of challenge. The pizza was so good, I could have easily eaten another 2 slices. I was good though because I felt satisfied with the one slice. Eating more would have just been for pleasure and not for necessity. I did cave and had a can of Coca-Cola despite initially reaching for the water bottle. For dinner, I had 3 Taco Bell crunchy Supreme Tacos and a huge glass of water. 

As for exercise, I did 10 push ups, followed by 25 squats, and repeated both with no rest just to say I did some form of exercise. 

Day 9 - Tuesday, July 26th 

Today was Election Day for 3 of my counties. I was up at 5:30 so I could get dressed and get to my first county by 6:30 a.m. As is usual for me, I skipped breakfast. For lunch, the county brought in food from a really good Asian restaurant. I had Spicy Chicken, white rice and grilled veggies. It was the perfect amount of heat. Nose ran like crazy, but the flavor was spectacular. Sometimes, food is just too spicy and it's basically no flavor to it. I drank a ton of help with the spice.

For dinner, I went through Wendy's and had a bottle of water and a Dave's Single Classic. When I got home that night, I was snacky so I had some Siggi's 0% Milkfat Yogurt. I had read that Yogurt can help with weight loss. It has something to do with getting good bacteria in your gut. I figured, what the heck. Can't hurt to try it. 

I didn't plan on exercising today but I was pretty jazzed up from the excitement of the election that I had some energy. I decided to do 10 push ups and 25 body weight squats. 

Day 10 - Wednesday, July 27th

Not sure why, but I woke up starving today. Also SUPER tired from yesterday's 15 hour day. Needless to say, I did not run this morning. Instead, I ate breakfast. I know...Shocker! I had an English muffin with butter, and some of the Siggi's yogurt for breakfast. 

For lunch, I wasn't too hungry and I debated skipping because I did have breakfast. But instead I chose to have some Campbell's Chicken and Sausage Gumbo soup with a slice of Sourdough bread and butter and a huge glass of water.

For dinner, we had fish tacos and a salad. I also had some tortilla chips with homemade guacamole. As usual lately, I just had water to drink with dinner.

Since I hadn't felt like running in the morning, my wife and I went for a hike around a lake near us. It's only 1.64 miles or so, but it's pretty and it's relaxing. Relaxing is important for weight loss believe it or not. Cortisol is a stress hormone that causes weight gain. All in a all...a really nice day.

Day 11 - Thursday, July 28th

Today, I woke up starving again. Still felt really tired too so I didn't run. I was very mad at myself. I had yogurt, a banana and an English muffin with butter for breakfast, but because I ate late, I skipped lunch. I just wasn't hungry. That Siggi's yogurt is pretty satisfying. It's high in Protein which helps you feel full. I have been measuring it out each time with a food scale. I eat 170+/- grams. If you don't have a food scale, I highly recommend getting one. It really helps with portion sizes, plus if you're into counting Macros - which I'm not - the good ones will give you that info too.

For dinner, I had a double roast been sandwich (1 sandwich, double the meat) from Arby's. I just drank water and I skipped the curly fries. 

Since I was mad about not running, I got out a pair of 20 lb dumbbells and did 10 curls and then 10 overhead presses before going to bed. 

Day 12 - Friday, July 29th

Woke up again this morning, really tired with no motivation to run so I stayed in bed. Not sure what's going on, but I woke up hungry again! So, for breakfast, I had some Siggi's yogurt and a banana. I was on the road again today so for lunch I had a 6" subway sub. I had their new Steak and pepper jack cheese on white bread with the garlic aioli. It was actually really good. I skipped the chips and a drink option. 

On the drive home, I was really wanting a snack. I stopped and got gas and went inside after pumping. I almost got a Coke, but instead opted for a Lipton Peach Tea. It's less sugar than the Coke and it's not carbonated. This may sound weird, but I swear the carbonation makes me bloated. Even diet sodas I've tried give me a big stomach. Not to mention that I had Aspartame as a sweetener. I've just read too many articles about how bad it can be. I also wanted some candy, but for some reason, opted for a Slim Jim instead. By the way...I really enjoyed it. I used to eat them when I was younger. The tea satisfied the sweet craving I was having and the Slim Jim filled me up just enough.

For dinner, I went a little crazy. I got Outback and got the Ribeye (my favorite). I did get the smaller one, but I have always done that. I had the mixed veggies and a loaded backed potato. Now normally, I would get cheese fries, but I did skip those. That actually wasn't too hard because we got it to go and cheese fries (to me) are not as good at home. They cool off too much on the drive. I also skipped the bread they give you. Again, not too hard because by the time you get it home, it's not nice and warm any longer. I just had water to drink.

Feeling like I went overboard today with the eating and snacking, I did my 10 x 20lb curls and overhead presses right before bed. 

Day 13 - Saturday, July 30th

Today, my wife and I woke up early, skipped breakfast, and hiked what turned out to be 7 miles. We only planned on hiking about 4, but then we kept seeing signs for cool things to see if we just went a little farther. Signs like .6 miles to a lake. .8 to another lake, .03 to a covered bridge...and so on. We ended up seeing 3 waterfalls, 3 lakes and a covered bridge at Dupont State Forest. 

After the hike, we went to Brevard, NC which is right there by the forest essentially and had steamed bagel sandwiches for lunch. I had the corned beef and pastrami on an everything bagel with spicy mustard and a cup of water to drink. The steamed bagel takes some getting used to, but really good. The place is called Sully's Steamers if you'd like to check them out. I'm pretty sure it's a chain. 

Since I wasn't sure how healthy the steamed bagel was, I decided for dinner I would have Sushi. I got the 8 piece sushi deluxe with miso soup and water to drink. 

Day 14 - Sunday, July 31st and the End of Week 2

As I mentioned above, I weighed in this morning at 189.2. Eight pounds down from when I started. While I was a little hungry this morning, it was nothing like I have been experiencing all week. So I skipped breakfast and waited for lunch. I was really beat from the hike yesterday so I did not run this morning like I planned on doing. 

For lunch I had a weird combination of things. My wife was cooking and just using stuff in the pantry that we had rather than get take out. So what I had was this chickpea & fresh spinach that was sauteed in a pan, four small Spanakopita, and this really good fried cheese. It's called Halloumi cheese and fries up really well. As you know, I've been trying to avoid fried foods, but I couldn't resist these "fried cheese sticks" because they are so good. I had 4 and I could have eaten the whole plate.  I also had a banana just to have something "sweet". 

For dinner, my wife made gnocchi & spinach with a vodka cream sauce. I had a huge glass of water to drink.

As for exercise today, I was annoyed I didn't run in the morning when it was cooler so I headed out the door at 5 p.m. for a 30 minute run. I had to walk three times because it was so hot. But since I had to walk several times, I decided to add on 3 x 24 second hill runs. These were not sprints, but were hard effort. I walked back down for recovery. Later that night, I also did my tiny workout with 20lb dumbbells....10 curls and 10 overhead presses.

I would like to add in closing, that I have not felt like I'm dieting per se. Yes, I'm skipping things l usually get like a soda and fries with my fast food or having cookies in the house. But if you don't buy it, it's pretty easy to avoid. The other other day, my wife made a sort of monkey bread. It's two cans of cinnamon rolls and then the icing poured all over it. That was really tempting because it was in the house, but I successfully avoided it. 

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