Thursday, May 14, 2015

Weekly Weigh-In - Week 8, 2015

Okay, here's the situation...

I weighed in on April 20th and found that I had not lost any weight in the prior week.   It really frustrated me, so of course, I ate some junk food to make myself feel better.   Then, I felt stupid.

Then, I spoke with Sean Anderson of The Daily Diary of a Winner.   We talked about the danger of letting that number on the scale derail us.  It made me realize that I should truly look beyond any specific measurement on a weekly basis, OR at least not it distract me from my choices.  So, he encouraged me to stay away from the scale for awhile, which I did.  I didn't weigh for three weeks.  I had good days, not-so-good days and also increased my exercise levels.

On Monday, I weighed in and had lost 3 pounds.   Nothing to be sad about, but not what I had hoped for after three weeks.   But I also know that I wasn't as focused on my food choices, because I knew that I wouldn't be on the scale for awhile.   

My kids are all going through final exams now.  As parents, we are seeing the effects of what is learned in the classes that have weekly quizzes vs. those classes with only one major exam at the end of the semester.   You have got to be a tremendously DISCIPLINED student to continue to study consistently throughout the semester without any quizzes along the way.  On the other hand, a quiz every Monday morning will somewhat force some daily discipline upon you, right?

So, the question then becomes, "how disciplined am I?" when it comes to my current choices.  I think my 3-week period just answered that for me.   

At this point, I will be grateful for the 3 pound loss and go back to weekly weigh-ins...this time, I just won't put as much stock in the number each week.   It will fluctuate based on water intake, food choices and even exercise the day before.   I will go back to tracking my calories daily, exceeding 10,000 FitBit steps daily and thinking of my end goals.

I am still upbeat and learning as I go.

Big Clyde  

Monday, April 13, 2015

Weekly Weigh-In - Week 4, 2015

I am happy to report a 4 pound loss this week!  That brings me to a 17 pound loss over the past four weeks.  Good eating, reasonable exercise and walking and few cheats seem to be the trick.

This week, I traveled to Dallas for some day-long meetings with catered foods, etc.  Nights out usually involved visits to great restaurants, drinks, etc.   I made good choices (avoiding bread, desserts, heavy-calorie meals, etc.), but I did not follow a strict 1,700 calorie which would be ideal.

I could argue that I was too lazy to determine the calories in certain restaurant foods, but it is not always perfectly accurate.  So, a lot of guesswork comes into play.  I would have to guess on serving size, one restaurant's shrimp etouffe vs. another that I can find on, etc.

Instead, I am trying to make a very long-term mindset that I can maintain for the rest of my life.  If I knowingly choose to have the rice dish with a heavy cream sauce, then I'd better avoid the bread and dessert...and then likely hit the treadmill for a long walk or a shorter run.  That attempt at balance and moderation worked pretty well for me last week.

I've been through this great weight loss pattern before and I don't know when I let this type of balanced decision-making lapse.  But I feel slightly older and wiser now and maybe the stakes are getting higher.  For about 25 years, I ate whatever I wanted and didn't seem to suffer the negative effects of that, except for buying clothes with a 3XL stamped on them.  But as I come within months of hitting age 50, I think that this continued weight level would naturally bring on high blood pressure, diabetes, etc.  I will likely hit a milestone number next week and intend to never return to this neighborhood.

My thought for this week is that sheer momentum is overrated.  Every great weight loss streak at some point veers off the path, unless it is rooted in specific and intentional daily choices.  If I make a (rare) bad choice at breakfast, then I better hit the carrots, salads and treadmill for the remainder of that day.

Have a good week everyone!

Big Clyde

Monday, April 6, 2015

Weekly Weigh-In - Week 3, 2015

I unintentionally changed my routine this week, but did not suffer from it.

This week, I lost 3 pounds which is great.  That puts me at a loss of 13 pounds in 3 weeks.  My clothes fit a lot better, but I've not lost enough that I think anyone would notice.  Fine with me.

My eating was off and on, in that I had days when I was closer to 2,200 calories, which included some sugar, Easter candy, etc.  But I also massively ramped up my exercise with FitBit daily steps of 20,000 (10 miles), which included running at a 12 min/mile pace.   

I am traveling this week and have a few days stuck in a conference room.   Bummer.  So, I will really have to watch my food choices and try to find the extra steps whenever I can.

Have a great week everyone!

Big Clyde

Monday, March 30, 2015

Weekly Weigh-In - Week 2, 2015

Another solid week of great activity (averaged 13,000 daily steps on FitBit) and good eating.  That resulted in only a 1 pound loss this week, but that adds up to 10 pounds in two weeks.  

Yes, I'm a bit discouraged that it wasn't higher, but I am trying not to over-think it.  I so quickly adapted to my new nutrition plan of low-calorie foods, tons of veggies, and almost no sugar, that I had several days in a row where I was only eating about 1,100 - 1,350 calories.   With increased walking, it could be that my body might have actually conserved some calories or fat or whatever as
if I was starving myself.   Again, I reached out to Sean @ for some insight and he suggested that I eat more, so then I had a few days when I was above 1,900 calories.  

Either way, I know too much to get too hung up on a daily or weekly measurement.  My commitment is unchanged:

  • Stay at around 1,700 calories per day. 
  • Walk at least 10,000 steps per day.
  • Avoid sugar as much as possible.
  • Don't quit.
Have a great week everyone!

Big Clyde

Monday, March 23, 2015

Weekly Weigh-In - Week 1, 2015

Well for the first time in almost two years, I made a very solid effort to eat carefully and track my nutrition and progress.   Add to that a very steady effort at getting in at least 10,000 walking steps or five miles per day, and it adds up to an impressive week for me.

9 pounds gone for me in one week!  

Just for my own records, I want to note a few things here.

  1. I did not have some farewell meal the day before that would satisfy my cravings AND bulk me up for my starting weight.   I think I am beyond playing those games now (though I did that in the past when starting diets).  
  2. I did not skip meals, cheat or starve.  But I did average around 1,500 calories per day, ate tons of veggies and virtually no sugar or dairy (other than half&half for my coffee).
  3. I know that I will likely not lose this amount of weight again, because the first week tends to be one of the biggest...not sure why.
  4. Clothes already feel much looser!   What a great feeling in one week.
Thanks again to Sean from Daily Diary of a Winning Loser, who gave me great advice and encouragement this week.   His journey is one tht we all can learn from.   Please visit if you need some inspiration!

Big Clyde 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Putting It All Together

Hello bloggers and friends.   

I am doing well and thought I'd check in.   Life has been good for me in the past year or so, but I have kept eating whatever I want and have the typical results on the scale.   My biggest change and improvement in terms of a steady lifestyle change is the use of my FitBit.   I have weeks when I am above 10,000 steps and others when I am closer to 7,000...but I monitor it each day and it motivates my activities.

I feel healthy, but am still way too overweight, so almost on a whim, I decided last Saturday to go back to the most consistent and healthy weight loss method that I know...counting calories.

This worked for me in 2010 when I lost 50 pounds from March to September.  Then, I got comfy and gradually returned to my favorite foods and eating habits.

Pardon the cliche, but "this time, it feels different".   Here is what I am doing differently:

Healthier Foods
I am still staying at 1,750 calories per day or lower, but it is now packed with veggies, low-fats, (mostly) natural foods and almost no sugar (so far).  It is repetitive for now, but nothing gimmicky or pre-packaged as "diet food".

Yes, I still love the FitBit and find that it is perfect for what motivates me.   I like having some FitBit friends that I can use to compare myself to and challenge for short periods.  I was so surprised to see that I normally would walk only approx 4,500 steps per day.   Now, I am striving for over 10,000 steps and have even accomplished a 30,000 step day (approx 15 miles)!   It keeps me focused on at least some light activity and keeps me honest about it.

Food Tracking
I track my calories and food for every meal on SparkPeople.   It is so much easier than when I did it in 2010 now that I am using the mobile apps, etc.  Like the FitBit, it keeps me focused and honest.

Activity vs. Popularity
I loved doing this blog for a few years.  At first, I was just trying to learn if an overweight, middle-aged guy could really become healthy by riding a bicycle.  Then, it became more focused on changing my entire lifestyle choices.    But it also became it's own creative and social activity.  One of my blogging friends Rockstar Tri likely could see that it was distracting me and would write "less writing, more riding".   Good advice.   So, this time, I will likely not blog too frequently and realistically, may not read other blogs as often as I'd like.   My focus will be on making good choices each day, plain and simple.

Here's the part that might make you smile...though I have only been doing this for four days so far, I already feel that I have that mojo in full force.   How crazy that just a few days of good choices and determination can seem to set me on the right path!?!   

Finally, I want to thank Sean from Daily Diary of a Winning Loser.   He has been a great source of knowledge, guidance and inspiration to me.  

Big Clyde

Monday, June 23, 2014

Why Walking Works For Me

About five months into the start of my blog in 2009, my dreams were big.   Ride the bike, enter races, lose weight, new lifestyle naturally follows...easy.

Then, I realized that weight loss would depend MUCH MORE on what I ate, than how much I sweat.  Bummer...I really wanted to maintain my pizza lifestyle.   

So, I became a big challenge guy.  I figured that if I set big huge challenges or goals for myself, I would HAVE to train more and more and therefore keep my pizza.  It was exciting to think of a half-marathon or riding a century cycling race (okay, even a metric-century cycling event).  

But after a few years of some big events, I could see that my activity AFTER the big race would taper off and I would backslide.  Big time.  Too often.  

So me and many other bloggers would have these seasons of highs and lows, gains and losses...which can be pretty de-motivating.   Makes you want to quit blogging for awhile. 

We've all known that walking is healthy, but also boring and slow and not sexy at all.   There has never been a movie-montage of the main character begginning a daily walking regimen.   No medals or t-shirts for walking events.   Right?

But walking as exercise is practical and does not lend itself to excuses.

I walk every day and so do you.  With FitBit, I still get a fun daily measure of my progress toward 10,000 steps per day.  There is a great website that allows me to playfully measure or compare with others.  And I find myself looking for opportunities to move more everyday and when I am behind on my steps, then I get motivated to jump on the treadmill (or a few trips around the neighborhood) and bang out a few miles in 30 minutes.

I typed this while on a treadmill (more on that later) and I don't know how many miles I have walked in this time (also on a long conference call), but I have not yet gone to the gym today and have logged in well above 10,000 steps (or 5 miles).    No cycling gear, no trip to the gym and no guilt for missing a workout day.   As a husband and father of three, I think this is perfect for me right now.

Big Clyde

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

The Paleo - Daniel Plan - Smoothie diet

For several months now, my wife and I have been substituting some meals for blended smoothies we make at home.   We watched "Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead", bought the juicer and quickly realized how healthy the vegetable juices could be...but what a hassle with all of the produce shopping and prep.

So, we started adding in more smoothies with a very expensive blender.   Handfuls of spinach or baby kale were blended with bananas or blueberries and some chia, nuts or protein powder.   Yummy and pretty easy (though my wife is the one who prepares our smoothies).

Finally, about two weeks ago, a group of friends at our church started a Tuesday night group to begin The Daniel Plan.   Though it pretty much followed along with the same juicing/blending guidelines, there is also a faith and fellowship component added to this plan.  Nice.

Then, today I spoke with Neighbor Ted who now lives across the country.   As we were catching up, he mentioned that he has been pretty successful lately with a "paleo" diet.  

My question to you is this:  Have you followed any of these plans (juice/blend/Daniel/paleo) and what is your assessment?   Please let me know!

Big Clyde

Monday, June 16, 2014

FitBit Friends

The FitBit Flex is a wristband that tracks your daily steps (and a few more things) with a suggested daily goal of 10,000 steps per day (which is approximately 5 miles).   There have been weeks when I have hit that every day, but lately, I have been far below that.

This has been pretty great for me this year for a number of reasons, but they may be pretty obvious (more awareness, daily activity, no excuses due to ease, etc.).

Dan commented on my last post that he would like to join me as a FitBit Friend (or whatever they call it) so that we can see each other's steps, encourage each other, etc.    That would be awesome.   my email is and my username on FitBit is probably BigClydesdale or BigClyde...something like that (sadly, I can't figure out my own profile name).

I'll write more later this week about how I am choosing to eat better and the results.

Have a great week!

Big Clyde

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Writer's Block?

I'm back to check in with my blogging friends.   I see that several of my favorite bloggers from the past have moved on to other interests, maybe other social media venues or have just been busy.   Me too.

This has been a great year so far for me.   Mrs. Clyde is still doing very well with her work and her ministry as our worship leader at church.   She even lets me play bass or sing when there's a spot open.  My daughter just graduated from high school with a pretty impressive academic performance and has chosen to attend my alma mater in the Fall...a smaller, but well-known liberal arts university.   Makes me feel good that she may be taking classes from some of my old professors.  And my two boys are continuing to work very hard at school and will soon be participating in a community theatre production of Mulan.   If they are happy and healthy, my life is pretty full.

As for me...I'm doing fine, but in pretty much the same shape that I was when I started this thing.   Aside from wearing larger clothes, I am still fortunate to have no other health concerns (bp, cholesterol, etc...but how long can that last?).  In reality, I eat more nutritionally now (our whole family does).  We juice, we blend, we have salads and I have consumed more kale and spinach in the last 6 months than I would have ever predicted.   But those good choices only cover about 1 meal a day and I eat "like an American" the rest of the time...not helpful for weight loss.

 I also frequently attempt to get 10,000 steps in per day as recorded on my FitBit.   By the way, if you any of you want to connect via the FitBit website and be "friends" or whatever, I would love that.   It is fun to encourage each other that way.

And finally, regarding the title of this daughter is over halfway finished with writing her first novel!   It started with our family game called "Made-up Movie", which I wrote about in a few posts a few years back.  She took a fun plot that we generated on a car-ride and will soon have a novel longer than The Great Gatsby!  I will definitely read the book and look forward to seeing the movie someday.

But back to me (!), my daughter and wife have encouraged me to write this summer.   Yes, more blogging, but also writing a novel (or at least starting one).   I am thinking through some ideas now and am pretty excited about pursuing a new challenge.   I'll write about it as I experiment with it.

I have a summer goal of achieving 10,000 steps daily, at least 5 days per week (that is roughly 5 miles per day).   I'll update you on my progress soon.

Have a good weekend!

Big Clyde

Friday, February 7, 2014

10,000 Steps

Maybe I'm a bit late to the party, but I purchased a FitBit "Zip" pedometer about a month ago.  And one for my wife.   It seems so lame to measure only walking, or realistically, just steps throughout my day.   As usual, I recall measuring my running miles or cycling miles per week...not steps.

But here's my thinking:  my long-term health is dependent on consistent, long-term behavior.   Cycling daily or even several times per week means sacrificing other areas of my life that I don't really have a desire to sacrifice.  Running is just no longer a good idea for a lifelong exercise.   But walking, just walking, requires no equipment, special shoes, etc.   Obviously.  

Though not nearly as aggressive as cycling or other workouts, it is excuse-free for nearly all of us.   The goal from FitBit is to log 10,000 steps per day.   That equates to about 5 miles per day.   Without any extra walking, it looks like my normal steps per day only totals about 3,500 steps.  So, now when I am out and about, I check my little screen and find that I am parking further away, taking a few short walks and even a few hour-long walks just to get the steps in.   Not aggressive, but perhaps more consistent than my previous bursts of effort toward cycling or running.

Do any of you track your steps or walking miles?

Big Clyde

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Slowly Turning The Big Ship last post was in August, but I didn't expect to stay away for so long.   So, here's a brief re-cap of what's going on with me:

Family - All is well.  I'm married with three kids and all of us are healthy, working, studying, involved with some light extra-curricular stuff and church.  We are happy and blessed.

Work - Also, doing fine here.  Though the economy showed signs of improvement this year, things have still be challenging in my industry and I had a major year-long project to complete, which required extra hours and attention this year.   Goal was achieved and I am looking forward to 2014.

Health/Weight - No changes here, which is not a good sign.   I am still overweight and have not been working on eating better over the past few months.  My focus has been elsewhere and when I am not focused on eating healthy, I eat fast food, snacks, etc.  Otherwise, my health is fine.

Exercise - Can't recall my last run or decent bike ride.

So, why would I blog about any of that?   There's been nothing to say of any substance over the past few months, so I've stayed away from the blogging world.

I'm not certain that I will continue this blog because I feel like I've learned what I needed to learn by reading about nutrition, cycling, running, weight loss, etc.   The knowledge is easy.  The change in lifestyle is more difficult.   It takes a while to turn a big ship, but it DEFINITELY requires a skipper who is at that steering wheel.

My efforts began with cycling, then nutrition (really, counting calories) and eventually, running.   All were productive and fun.   But with each new effort, I put tremedous time and focus into them for short-term goals and results.  

I like cycling and will ride for the rest of my life, but I intend to ride for light exercise, fun, and errands...not as a goal-focused cyclist with my eyes focused on the next race or milestone.  It requires too much time in the saddle and away from other parts of my life that I enjoy more.

I enjoyed running, but accept that my knees only have so many miles in them and I don't want to be limping in my sixties, so I think I will never do another 10k.   Maybe a slow 5k now and then or a simple neighborhood jog.

As for nutrition, that is where I have learned the most (but again, have not consistently put that knowledge toward permanent changes in my life).   I'll write more about that in a post within the next few days.

I'm aware that this post might seem a bit depressing or disappointing to some of you and that's fine.   I guess I realized about a year ago that I could continue to do short-term goals, then fall back, then repeat...for the rest of my life.   But that was not the goal.   My goal was to make a sustainable change in my weight (whether it was through exercise or nutrition).   The patterns of exercise and nutrition that "work" are HIGHLY individualized in my opinion and we all have to figure out what patterns suit our individual lifestyles the best.   I haven't figured out how I will do that yet, but I think I am getting close to figuring out what will work for my lifestyle.  Many of you have already figured it out for yours.  Well done.

Finally, I wanted to say a very genuine "thank-you" to the few of you that somehow care enough about me to be reading this now.   I have not been as diligent on following other blogs recently and I feel badly about that.   But when I have checked in to see how my blogging friends are doing, I am always inspired that so many of you are still working out changes in your lifestyle, or riding your bikes, or signing up for new races.   I hope to someday soon be back at that type of activity, whether I blog about it or not.


Big Clyde

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Weekly Weigh-In

This will be a short post but I wanted to note that I lost 1 pound this week.  My friend Tig, went insane and joined some local "Boot Camp" and starting eating baked fish and fresh veggies and lost 5.8 pounds last week.   We are on one of those "let's-challenge-each-other-but-really-encourage-each-other", but I swear I hope that he goes to the Pizza Hut buffet a few times this week.

I can't compete with baked fish and boot camp.

But I am motivated nonetheless to continue in my very reasonable plan of better eating, more moving and steady progress.

Because I have been breaking bad on my food choices a bit lately, I am doing another 3-day juice fast, beginning this morning.  I like them for a few reasons:
1.  I think it psychologically gets me back on track.
2.  I would guess it chemically breaks off any recent sugar-addiction build-up, or at least weakens the sugar-cravings.
3.  It is useful for all of us to have some hurdles that we have to jump over.   Small personal challenges make life a bit more interesting and can give our confidence a boost, especially in areas of our lives that have been challenging for us in the past.

I'll post again throughout the juice fast on the recipes, some do's-and-don'ts and the results.

Have a good week everyone!

Big Clyde

Monday, August 5, 2013

Weekly Weigh-In

Another solid week of good choices, but only one exercise session...a short 2.7 mile jog, which went better than I expected.

Loss of 3 pounds.  Very happy with that.   I continue to drink my homemade veggie juice for at least one meal per dayand one snack.  Otherwise, I just am trying to eat smaller portions and avoid unnecessary carbs like bread. 

For example, we went to an italian restaurant last week.  I split some pasta and a small pizza with my son.  Carbs + carbs.  But, of course, they served a small loaf of bread before we received "our meal".  I avoided that bread appetizer.  This was a small thing, but this journey is made up of the little steps, right?

I'm nearly one week into this month, with a goal of 100 miles (by foot or bike) by the end of the month.   Better get in gear, Clyde.

Have a good week everyone!

Big Clyde

Monday, July 29, 2013

Weekly Weigh-In

Down 4 pounds since last Monday!  The first week on a diet is always good for an impressive loss.   I'll be very happy with a 2 pound loss next week...that's the goal.

I was pretty disciplined with drinking healthy vegetable juices at least once a day (sometimes two meals) and otherwise just tried to make those boring "good choices" of salad vs. burger, turkey vs. beef, etc. 

Since I haven't been on an actual run in many months, I started slow with two 2-3 mile walks this past weekend.   I will steadily increase that to about 3 walk/jogs this week and at least one bike ride.

Have a good week everyone!

Big Clyde

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The Rest of 2013

On January 2nd, I wrote this post about my desire to find a "reasonable plan".  Not an aggressive, short-term blitz to drop a lot of weight or mileage quickly (which I am fond of), but an intentional plan that could be maintained for a lifetime.

I have learned certain things about myself thanks to this blogging world.  I know that I am very good at short-term challenges (up to six months) and that I am really encouraged by comments from fellow bloggers on the same journey.  But I've also learned that telling the same story of short-term success with eventual setbacks means that I have not really made great strides in a lifestyle change, which is the entire point.

So, I wrote about my desire to live out a reasonable plan and I think I am starting to live it now.

I have a good friend named Tig that is pretty much a real-life action hero:  career military, friendly, capable in nearly all fields and a very decent guy.  He will take the lead or be your wingman.  But he ages like the rest of us and wants to get in better shape.   Recently, we challenged each other to a few upcoming events:  ride 100 miles during Le Tour de France, run a 5k in September, ride a metric century in December.

Since we both accomplished the recent 100 miles, he wrote to me and suggested the following:
*  Weekly Monday weigh-in and then report out the loss/gain
*  100 miles per month throughout 2013 (whether by bike, walk or run)
*  Weight loss goal for remainder of 2013.   He chose 25 pounds, I chose 40.

Simple, practical, achievable.  Most of us can ride 8 miles in 45 minutes.   3x per week gets you over 100 miles per month.  A 2,200 calorie-per-day diet will result in approximately 1.75 pounds lost per week or 7 pounds per month.  A highly nutritous diet of more vegetables will result in even greater loss and is better for body chemistry.

So, the 2013 plan finally begins in late July. 
Healthy, lighter eating
Regular, moderate exercise
Weekly reporting on short and mid-range goals
Accountability through a friend and this blog

It's not dramatic, but it might be my most realistic attempt at finally changing my lifestyle forever.

Big Clyde

P.S.  I know myself and may still do some short-term challenges for fun, but they will not deter from the plan. 

P.S.S.  If any of you sense that I am falling away, please feel free to scold me harshly.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Le Tour Challenge: Completed!

I'm happy to report that I completed the challenge of riding 100 miles during the last two weeks.  Ultimately, due to some procrastination and a busy work schedule, I had to ride 25 miles per day on Friday, Saturday, and today.  I wondered how I would hold up and I was surprised to have done quite well.

My next event will be a simple 5k race in late September.   Not a big deal, but I have not been in a timed race since 2010 and not run that distance since last September, so you know, it is kinda like starting over.

What's coming up next for you?

Big Clyde

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Le Tour Challenge - Final two days

It's Saturday night and I just finished a 25.9 mile ride on a stationary bike at the gym.   It feels weird that I haven't actually ridden my bike on an actual road for this challenge, but I have a busy work schedule with some recent travel and it is hot in the summer in Arizona!  I'm just glad that I have stuck with this.

Tomorrow is the final day of Le Tour de France (which is of no interest to me), but it is also the last day of my challenge to ride 100 miles during the race.  I have 24 miles to complete tomorrow to meet my goal.

Then on to my next challenge...  :)

Have a good Sunday, my friends!

Big Clyde

Friday, July 19, 2013

Le Tour de France Challenge - Update Friday NIGHT!

No time to chat, but I just finished a quick 13 mile ride.  Of the 100 miles to be completed by the end of the Tour de France (Sunday), I still have just under 62 miles to ride.  

Back to work now, several commitments tomorrow for a friend's wedding, then church on Sunday.   Otherwise, I am still striving to complete this challenge.   I'll keep posting my progress.

Have a great weekend, everyone!


UPDATE:  I went back to the gym late tonight and did another 12 miles.   50 miles left!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Juice Fast - Day 3 and Done!

Well that was interesting.

It was only three days, but after some inspiration from the documentary "Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead", I just completed a 3-Day Juice Fast.   Check out the plan here.

There was no cheating.  Not a bite of fruit (or any other food).   The juice was made from 80% veggies and 20% fruit.  The 32 oz. of "Green Juice"  was the worst part of my day, but as I wrote yesterday, that is about two 5-minute periods of disgusting.  The other juices were tasty (enough).

I don't know if I lost any weight, but for a three day period that wasn't really my goal.  I really just wanted to see how I would handle it, how I would feel, how much time would it take, etc.  I'll jump on the scale tomorrow morning just to see if anything changed.

Here's what I learned:

  • I resisted the temptation of eating horribly by eating intentionally.  If I did not have a plan, my "normal" food choices would have been pretty bad, considering that my wife and kids are out of town.  I would have eaten junk food, snacks and desserts.  This juice plan kept me healthy.
  • I had plenty of energy, despite a lower amount of calories.  We could all stuff ourselves simply by eating instant oatmeal throughout the day and barely exceed 1,000 calories...but we would have no nutrients, etc.  Drinking the juice from tons of dark, leafy greens, carrots and a few fruits adds energy.  
  • It was cheaper than my regular food choices.  The veggies and fruit were definitely cheaper than my regular food.  (I bought the juicer about a month ago for $130).
  • It took about 60 minutes per night to prepare all juices for the next day.   That may seem like a lot of time, but it was quick to eat throughout the day and I just had to reach into the fridge to get my "meal".
  • I was reminded how much healthier veggies are compared to fruit (and everything else).
Over the next three days, I will be going to Temecula, CA for a business trip.  I know that I will eat solid food in the next few days, but since I am driving, I already stopped at the store to get some prepared veggie juices, a lot of carrots and some apples.   My normal pattern for a long drive would be to bring candy, chips, diet soda, candy and chocolate and jerky.  

Though I am 47 years old, I still want to eat like a 10-year-old with a paycheck.   

Maybe the 3-Day Juice Fast (found at did exactly what it claims to my life.   

Big Clyde

P.S.  Did another 9.5 miles on the stationary bike at the gym tonight with Crazy Jim.  25 miles down and 75 miles remaining in my Tour de France Challenge.  

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Juice Fast - Day 2: Drinking Kryptonite

I completed Day 2 of the juice fast and I am doing pretty well, except for about 10 minutes of the day. 

Twice a day, I force myself to drink Green is like drinking kryptonite.

I don't own a white suit, but otherwise, this is me.
Now, we see from this image that Lex Luthor feels energized from drinking the powerful green kryptonite.  I get it.   I have more energy than I would have if I were feasting on my beloved pizza.

However, before and during my consumption of Green Juice, it weakens me like I am Kal-El, the Last Son of Krypton.  It is an assault to my taste buds.  It laughs at me when I add ice to make it more palatable.  It mocks me when I drink it through a straw...would battery acid taste better through a straw?!?

Good news?  Given my hatred of the Green Juice, it may (finally) be proof that I am actually Superman or something like him.  (I've just been dressing like Clark all of these years, or his fatter brother Warren).

Bad news?  I'm soft and have trained my taste buds to only like sweet and fatty foods and I have an uphill climb to get back to a normal healthy diet of lots of veggies, fruit and less fat.

My friend Jared (who got me into this juicing thing in the first place) told me to try Red Kale instead.  Yeah, sure, EVERYONE loves Red Kale, right?   Have any of you ever ordered red kale in a restaurant?  Ever see one of those tv commercials where the kids scream to their mom from the dinner table "More red kale, please!".   Me either.

But that is what I will be choking down drinking tomorrow for lunch and dinner.  Jealous?

Stay tuned.

Big Clyde

Monday, July 8, 2013

Juice Fast - Day 1 of 3

Day 1 went pretty well, considering I went the entire day drinking mostly vegetable juice out of mason jars.
  • Did I mention that my wife and kids are out of town for several days?  This is normally the time when I would buy an enormous pizza to use for breakfast, lunch, and dinner for a day or two?  Phad Thai?  Nachos?  They all sound good and I wouldn't even have to share.   But instead, I bought SIX BUNCHES OF KALE and will go through each one of them in the next three days.
  • Did I mention that my church is somewhat known for featuring a Waffle Bar during the fellowship time after worship?  A WAFFLE BAR...with toppings (because waffles and syrup aren't always sweet enough)!   Instead, I drank carrot juice with lemon added in.
  • Did I mention that I am still in this self-inflicted challenge of cycling 100 miles during the Tour de France?   Not that big of a deal for a three week period, except I blew off the first week.   I am just now getting after it.   My sweat smells like celery. 
  • Tour de France mileage update:  16 miles down, 84 to go by 7/21.
I didn't hate it, didn't like it and didn't cheat.   That's good enough for me.

Big Clyde

Saturday, July 6, 2013

The Juice Fast

Some of you may have heard of the documentary "Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead".   I won't recap it, but it is on NetFlix and   You can find it.

Basically, in a pretty entertaining movie, we see a few people transform their lives through temporary juice fasts.   These are not smoothies with yogurt, berries and protein powder (not that there's anything wrong with that!).   These tend to be hardcore juices made mostly from leafy green veggies, some citrus, some apples.

Though I generally resist any fad diets, I do see that there are great benefits here.  I got interested, bought a juicer and have been doing it for about 7-10 meals per week for the past month or so.   When I am pretty consistent, I feel a great energy boost and know that I am getting far more vitamins from all of the veggies.  I am used to a "full" or bloated feeling from junk food and it feels great when I choose the juice instead.

On the downside, you go through a ton of veggies (because you are only drinking the juice, not eating the pulp), it can seem to take more time, and the taste of the Mean Green juice is honestly, nasty.

But is it worth it?  

If a wizard came to you with a magic pill and said that you would lose a lot of weight, you would totally grab it.  What if the wizard said it's not really a pill, but instead a recipe that you would have to make each day which would take some extra time and the recipe would taste nasty but could be consumed in a few minutes...then would you want it?   Oh, and it would be totally healthy for you and would quickly reduce your dangerous bmi score.

Yeah, I'd do it.   In the documentary, the guy does a doctor-guided 60-day juice fast.   They don't recommend most people do that, but instead suggest plans between 3 days to 15 days.

So, I'm going to do the juice fast for the next three days and will let you know how it goes.  I won't be totally hardcore, because I will still have some coffee (with a small amount of cream) and may have a Sunday afternoon beer.   I'm not trying to do this perfectly...I just want to make some changes on the food I eat.

Big Clyde

P.S.  I also did this thing called "exercise" today.  I did about 6.8 miles on a stationary bike (only 93 miles to go by 7/21) and walked 1.5 miles.  More tomorrow.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Big Clyde Rides Le Tour de France

As I crawl out of my comfort zone (such a procrastinator!), I challenged myself and my friend Tig to a cycling challenge, sponsored by 

The general idea is that you register on and commit to ride your bike during the days of the Tour de France.  The minimum suggested distance was 100 miles,which is going to be a challenge in our desert heat and my lack of exercise lately.  I like a challenge and this is certainly attainable for even a casual cyclist on a steel commuter bike.

If this sounds like fun to you, join in!   Here's the link:   The dates to do your mileage are from 6/29 to 7/21.

See you out there.

Big Clyde

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Commit. Train. Results? 2013 edition

Since my last post, I have been much more careful about what I eat.   I am juicing pretty regularly now (not smoothies with berries and yogurt...I'm talking the pure nasty juice of kale, spinach, celery, and lemons).    I've cut back on my caffeine intake and downsized my portions.    Good stuff.

Now, it's time to get moving.

My buddy, Tig, and I were talking the other night.   Okay, we were drinking and talking...and we challenged ourselves to do something big before the end of the year.   We agreed to ride a metric century in December.   My longest distance has been about 40 miles.   This will be 63 miles.   To do it decently, I'll need to build up my mileage and fitness levels in the coming months.

Our first step, will be to run a simple 5k in mid-September.   I'll need to train for that too.

When I was really active on this blog in previous years, someone once summarized my strategy as
1.  Commit (to a big event)
2.  Train (so that I can complete the event or do it decently)
3.  See the Results (usually in weight loss, but also overall fitness)

I guess I am back on that train again.   My friend has been fit his entire life (unlike me), but we are both guys between 45-48 who keep seeing the yearly decrease in exercise and increase in pounds.   Knowing that we will train and do these events together will definitely inspire me to get in gear.

And if I keep my nutrition in line, I'll see those results I've been looking for these past two years.

Big Clyde

Thursday, May 30, 2013

What To Do, What To Do...

Every overweight person has looked for the magic answer that would help them drop weight quickly and easily.   Me too.

By now, we all know that the obvious answer to long-term health is to eat healthy, eat less and move more.  But motivation, psychology and current life situations can make that so challenging, which is why so many of us are obese.

When I read recently about Gov. Chris Christie's weight loss surgery, he said something like:  "I've dealt with this all of my life, I am older now, with kids and am running out of time to drop the weight slowly and naturally, so I am taking action to get healthy through this surgery".   His view of the surgery seemed so reasonable to me.   I considered it very briefly for myself.  But after the surgery is performed, it is up to the patient to change their eating habits.  And begin exercising.

Once again, I found myself back to the same some point, I will have to change my eating habits or die early.   Here's how it plays out:

  1. Continue eating like I always have and get diabetes.   Action?  Change my eating habits.   If you have diabetes, you have to eat healthy or they will start cutting parts off of you.
  2. Get weight loss surgery and lose tons of weight.  Action?  Change my eating habits.  Spend tons of money on surgery.  And pray that I don't go back to my old habits and gain it back (I've seen it happen to others!).
  3. Go back to calorie counting and lose weight.  Action?   Change my eating habits.   I've done this before and it is certainly a reasonable approach.   But a slow and measured approach.  It is a bit like trying to quit drinking beer, but still keeping your job at the tavern.   Temptations are always close at hand. 
  4. Die early.
So, to avoid #4, I will have to change my eating habits so I'd better get back to it. 

If I am going to change my eating habits at some point in my life regardless, I'd be dumb to wait for diabetes to be the reason.   That elminates option #1.

And if I know that weight loss surgery will require a change in eating habits in the near future, I'd rather save the money and try again to do it on my own.  That eliminates option #2 for now.

So, option #3 is left.   I've done that before, but I still have kids that would like to celebrate with ice cream sometimes.   And making waffles for breakfast is fun at times.  These can be sparingly worked in to a low-cal diet, which is the key to truly changing eating habits with moderation as the end goal.  

But at my weight, I understand why people like Gov. Chris Christie wanted to get this going on a faster pace. 

I am now focused on doing something at that faster pace.   Healthy, but a major change for me.   More on that in a future post.

For now, I am trying to break my caffeine addiction.   I drink way too much coffee every day and have done that for the past 15 years.   I am reducing the amount each day now to try to break free of it for awhile.

Big Clyde

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

It's Happening Again...

Please stay with me for a little while on this one.

I'll start this one boldly...I believe in God.   Not The Force or some great spirit in the sky that is within all of us or a god of many forms that permeates all religions.  No.  I believe in the God that put himself into the human form of a baby on a rescue mission to reunite us with God, the Father.   Once we humans killed that man on a cross, he went up to Heaven to be with his Father and sent back down a Holy Spirit to guide all of us, if we simply accept him. 

When we feel something leading us one way or another, some may call it coincidence, or intuition or the dreaded "...things happen for a reason...".  I think that is the Holy Spirit guiding us.   God's subtle messenger.

I hope I haven't lost anyone yet.  

My point is that I am receiving the signs again that I have to get serious about improving my health and fitness.   I don't think it is coincidental.  I think it is a whisper from God and I'd be an idiot to ignore it.  It's happened before and it's happening again.
  • Some of you have checked in on me, making sure I was okay.   Much appreciated.  The family is great, work is good and all is well.   Just busy with family life, so less time for blogging.  Also, I don't blog when I am inactive.
  • Two friends asked me simply if I was riding my bike much.  Enough said.
  • My friend Chris has three kids and a wife (like me), is in my industry and is my age.  Next month, he'll run 100 miles in the Zion 100 Trail Run.  He's done it several times before.  I've been advised to not even pursue another 10k with my long-term back injury, but I can certainly do anything on a bike if I train for it.
  • My weight has crept up a little bit and I am shaping my kids' behavior.  I need to show them that we can all overcome bad habits.
  • Thank you Deb for the hello!
  • To GRB, who commented yesterday:  Nice to hear from you.  I have never been athletic and rarely saw the point of it.   I am reasonably active, but who would want to run for miles unless they were being chased?  For us non-athletes out there, we may find that we run, bike or swim simply so that we can stave off the 5-pound per year gain that happens in many North Americans over the age of 40.  10 minutes a day is the least any of us should do, including me.   I'll commit to 20 minutes minimum x 5 days per week.  I'll update regularly.  Feel free to e-mail me at if you want to communicate that way.
Have a great rest of the week, everyone!

Big Clyde

P.S.  All Christians are not the kind you see on tv and we do not watch Pat Robertson or listen to Rush Limbaugh.  I drink, I sometimes swear, I eat too much, I loved Django Unchained, I have gay friends, I go to church every Sunday and I am a very sinful Christian man.  That is why I am so glad that God sent his Son to remove my sins whenever I ask.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Here Comes the Sun!

It's been a long winter.  Granted, I live in the desert and have a warmer climate than most, but we all get used to our areas...and it has been pretty cold here with snowmen being built in my backyard about two weeks ago!  The colder weather makes it easier to stay inside and stay sedentary.

My reasonable approach has produced reasonable results.   I am exercising very little, but eating better than I used to.  The result is not helping me on the scale and likely not helping my fitness either.   Certainly, the scale shouldn't be the only scoreboard, but it is shameful how little I've exercised.  I need to be more intentional about changing my lifelong behavior of eating what I want and exercising as little as possible.

So, I'll be returning to the blog for some accountability and inspiration.  Back to you soon, after my next exercise session.

Big Clyde

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Forming a "Reasonable" Plan

Hello friends and bloggers.   Remember me?

I've been away and am coming back to check in and describe my thoughts on a reasonable plan for 2013.

Sounds exciting, doesn't it?   A reasonable plan?  No one usually cheers for "reasonable"...they cheer for aggressive, challenging, "all or nothing" (a ridiculous phrase), and even the "scary milestone event" (I've used that one in the past).

But a "reasonable" goal has always sounded very wimpy and tame to if I am settling for mediocrity.

Here are some of those mediocre or wimpy examples that I have heard in the past:

  • Make some better food choices
  • Exercise 3 times per week
  • Get a good amount of sleep
  • Lose 1-2 pounds per week
Instead, I have rejected those guidelines and have been focused on AGGRESSIVE results!   3-5 pound weight loss per week!  Exercise plans of 6 days per week.   1,300 calorie per day nutrition plan.

I have proven that I can be aggressive and achieve those results...for awhile.   I can train for specific races, hit aggressive weight loss goals by a specific date, and maintain my focus with that finish line in my sights.  I become a superhero for awhile.

But I now believe that this type of deadline-based goal planning is not helping me make sustainable lifestyle changes (now that's a boring phrase for you!).

So, I am going to make some adjustments to my plan for 2013.   I may still have some short-term deadlines for fun, but the over-riding theme is going to be one of moderate and steady progress, realistic goals...reasonable.

In my next post, I will share some input that I received from my physical therapist and my new favorite author.

Big Clyde

Monday, October 15, 2012

Weigh In - More good news

I missed my weigh-in post last week, but weighed in this morning and am down 4 pounds from my last weigh-in about 10 days ago.   I have also had some tummy trouble, so that could be a part of it.  Regardless, I am happy and feeling good.  

Since my last post, my daughter left us in sunny Arizona and visited Washington DC and New York for a week.   We missed her tremendously, but were grateful that she could have this great experience.   She visited the monuments, museums, a large publishing house and much more.  She returned home last weekend and we played all weekend.

The two of us are planning on doing El Tour de Tucson's 42-mile route in late November.   We haven't begun to train, so we'd better get on that soon.

Big Clyde