Day 90 – Reflections Of My Journey… So Far

Career change.  These are words that produce a certain amount of anxiety especially when the career change requires a state license. Part of the reason for the long silent period between blogs lately is because I did not want to be part of the 50% who fail the 4 hour long state exam the first time so I was spending a lot of time studying for it.  Now that I have taken the exam and passed it  (I almost aced it), I am back to paying attention to my blog… and workouts… and eating habits…  Throughout my break I rarely went to the rec center but maintained, for the most part, my healthy diet.  As a result, I am still between 245 and 250 pounds.  Now that my days will be fuller with my new career, I will have to figure out how I will work in my workout.

Here is what is NEW:

JUICING
I have learned when things happen three times in a row it is usually God trying to tell me something.  This time it was juicing.  The first instance happened when Mandi (my beautiful daughter) told me about a juicing bar she discovered near her home.  She said one of the owners became sick and standard medicine didn’t work so he turned to juicing.  In time he recovered and believed in juicing so much he opened a juice bar.  The next instance happened when my friend Warren told me about the movie Sick, Fat and Nearly Dead, which is about a man who became sick and, like the juice bar owner, medicine didn’t help so he turned to juicing, as well.  Finally, one of my emails from a health subscription mentioned the alternative to preparing a meal was to concoct a juice and drink it for instant super nutrients.  Three times is the charm so being the Type-A guy I am, I went to the fridge and started throwing things in the blender.

Juicing is taking veggies and fruit and making a juice from them to replace or supplement a meal.  It can be done in a blender or in a juicer and I don’t mean the kind that you had as a kid where you twisted the orange on it to get the juice out.  Nope.  The juicers they use now start at $150 and go up.  These old juicers can’t juice a carrot but the new ones can.  Since I don’t yet have a juicer I throw it all into the blender, add water and turn on the blender until is pulverizes everything into a light pulp.It can be messy but it can also be fun and it is very healthy.  Here is one of my favorite recipes:

1/2 Red Pepper
1 Banana
12 – 15 Red Grapes
1/8 Cantaloup
Handful of Spinach Greens
1 Small Tomato
1/2 Lemon

Next, fill the hopper 3/4 with water and let her rip.  My blender does a poor job of pulping the grape skins but who cares.  It comes out kind of thick but you get used to drinking it all down in no time.  I know it doesn’t sound appetizing but it tastes surprisingly good. I find that through juicing I am eating foods every day that I normally would not eat.  As a result, I feel healthier and I am eating less.  Warning!  Juicing may cause more frequent trips to the restroom.  I now have at least one juice concoction a day and sometimes two.

LOCALLY GROWN FOOD
Living in a rural area offers a treasure of food sources I have just recently become aware of.  Within ten miles from my house I have discovered a Guernsey farm that sells farm fresh milk, farm fresh eggs, and farm fresh butter.  The farmer keeps it all in a refrigerator in his garage where people wander in, take what they need and leave the money in jar. There are no hormones or steroids and the cows are happy so there are no stress toxins in the milk.  Pam and I have discovered the milk tastes different when it is straight from the cow.  It is sweeter, creamier, and just plain awesome.  In fact, it is so creamy we discovered it is a great replacement for half and half in our coffee.  The farmer says that the balance of protein and fat in his milk is such that is actually less fattening than processed whole milk at the grocery store even though it has a higher fat content.  Not sure how that works but if you can’t trust an Okie farmer who can you trust?

I also discovered local farmers sell their fresh produce in the parking lot of the Expo Center in Claremore every Saturday morning.  We can buy almost anything and it is all organic with no artificial coloring or chemicals added.  And, there is an Amish butcher shop that sells any cut of meat you can imagine.  The prices for this locally grown, healthy food is far cheaper than Whole Foods Market and is fresher.  I love it.

MY OWN GARDEN
I have never been interested in keeping a veggie garden. But, since finding my favorite veggies at the farmer’s market is sometimes a crap shoot I decided to grow my own red peppers, poblanos, and sweet onions.  Again, being a Type-A personality I just couldn’t stop there. Pam and I also planted green beans, broccoli, and a host of other veggies.  Not only is it healthy, it is also fun.  In fact, this may turn out to be a hobby.

When I think back to January it is amazing how much has changed in our lives – especially mine.  Before I was fat, felt tired all the time, and in a rut.  The company where I worked was a cesspool of stress and mismanaged by a guy who has no business in business.  I ate too much and what I did eat was slowly killing me.  Today, I have a new career, I eat healthy and happily, I work out and I feel great.  In fact, I am finding I am rethinking a lot of things.  With all these physical improvements I am starting to reflect on who I am, as well.  The idea of being a better husband, father,and friend is becoming even more important than ever to me.  If I can improve what I put into my body I can also improve what I put into my spirit.  I am just liking life much more today than I have in years.

End of Day 90