Thursday, December 28, 2006

Progress...not perfection

Okay, I’m back…it’s been a while.  I haven’t worked out very much.  I haven’t counted my calories.  I’ve over eaten.  I’ve eaten lots of chocolate. I’m afraid of the scale.


But I’m back.  I worked out today with the cycle class and did 20 min on the stairmaster.  I’m going to count my calories today and I’m going to keep working out and being active.  And this time next year, I will be less than 200 lbs.  And what a day that will be.  I can’t wait!


Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Last Wichita Eagle Article

1 challenge pounds


The Wichita Eagle


They're disappointed -- and delighted. They missed their combined goal by nearly 50 pounds -- but they say that without the WichiTalk Weight-Loss Challenge, they wouldn't have lost the 107 ½ pounds they did. Their faces and bodies definitely show the results of their efforts. In September, WichiTalk introduced six Wichitans who agreed to go public with their three-month effort to lose weight. They set their own goals and decided what approach to use.

This is the final report on the group, just in time to help you think about the pitfalls and successes ahead if losing weight is one of your New Year's resolutions. Watch for more advice to help you along, beginning in the Jan. 2 WichiTalk.

The first advice from our team members: Enlist a friend or two. All six said being part of a group made it easier to stick with their efforts, even though they got together only twice -- at the beginning and the end.

Reach Karen Shideler at 316-268-6674 or

Tom Allen

Bio: Age 43. Married with three children. Teacher and coach at Northwest High School.

Goal: 40 pounds. Lost 10.

Weekends and the "battle with snacks" kept him from losing more. He has begun to work out and hopes to continue to "improve my health at a slow and steady pace."

His advice: "Most important is to find a way to motivate yourself, and work to be a better you."

Jamie Goltz

Bio: Age 23. Married. Does secretarial-clerical work for Army National Guard.

Goal: 25 to 30 pounds. Lost 30, in part because she got sick.

With her doctor's permission, she wants to continue losing a pound here and there as her pregnancy progresses. Her baby is due in May, and her doctor told her that the heavier she is, the harder it will be to deliver.

Her advice: Go with what you believe in, and don't try to overdo it. Read labels and watch portion sizes.

Toni Harden

Bio: Age 46. Single with two children. Para educator at Wells Special Education Center.

Goal: 20 to 30 pounds. Lost 11.

She will continue to work out daily and to try to lose more, by counting calories and watching fat intake. "Working out first thing in the morning seems to be the best for me."

Her advice: Plan before you eat. Take the extra time to plan your meals for the whole week, and plan snacks, too.

Crystal Iseman

Bio: Age 26. Married, three children. Stay-at-home mom, day-care provider and college student.

Goal: 25 pounds. Lost 18 ½.

Losing weight was easy at first -- as time went on, not gaining became reason to celebrate. "I have realized that I am doing much better just losing a pound or so a week, so it doesn't feel like I am depriving myself."

Her advice: Find a weight-loss buddy. Take a few days off if you're getting burned out -- but don't overdo it. Focus on size instead of the scale: "Size can change quite a bit without the scale moving much, because of working out." Enlist the support of your spouse, friends and family.

Andrea McClellan

Bio: Age 31. Married with two children. Stay-at-home mom.

Goal: 25 pounds. Lost 15.

"I am doing it right this time around." The weight is staying off, and "If it takes me two more months to slowly reach my goal, that is fine with me." As a result of losing weight, she's using her inhaler less often for her asthma. "How awesome is that?"

Her advice: Set your mind to it. Only you can be in charge of the weight loss. Listen to the voice in the back of your head that says, "Don't eat that! What about all the hard work you did today?" Don't listen when it says, "Boy, I sure would like to eat that last piece of pie." At the drive-through, get a kids' meal with apples instead of fries (skip the dipping sauce) and give the toy to someone special -- yourself!

Ken Rawson

Bio: Age 30. Married with three children. Director of student ministries at First United Methodist Church.

Goal: 15 pounds. Lost 23.

Waking up early to work out was tough. Keeping a food journal and counting calories was inconvenient. But it worked. He has signed up for the KSN/Play It Again Sports Biggest Loser Competition (see box) and will keep doing what he has been doing.

His advice: Get involved with a group or friend, and join a message board. Keep a food log. Count calories. Get a workout DVD. Get off the couch: "Anything that you do is better than nothing." You may not lose as much as the people on TV, but "the feeling of fitting in my clothes, moving my belt another notch, feeling great, living a healthier life for my kids and sweet wife, and watching the man on the inside slowly emerge from the man on the outside have been the greatest rewards so far."

Reach Karen Shideler at 316-268-6674 or

Another challenge

Play It Again Sports and KSN are partnering for their version of Wichita's Biggest Loser. Participants, who must be at least 18, must register at the stores, at 8815 W. 13th St. or 11309 E. Kellogg, by Jan. 31 and will have 90 days to lose weight. For more information, visit the stores.

-- Karen Shideler


Tuesday, December 05, 2006

I'm a slacker

Today is Tuesday and I chose to sleep in a warm bed instead of sweating this morning. I suck. Yesterday I overslept and this morning I didn't want to get out of bed and go sweat. But I wish I had.

Tomorrow is a new day and if I do a good job eating, then I'm still ahead of the game.

My goal for my Friday weigh in...1 pound. Just to get to 258 and be officially 30 pounds less, that will be GREAT!

Well...The Eagle article is over and comes out Dec. 19th

Here is your spoiler...I won! Pretty cool. I kinda feel bad that 23 pounds is what won the Eagle story challenge. I thought I would really lose a lot more. And when you put 23 pounds against the amounts of weight people lose on the Biggest Loser, 23 seems pretty small.

One of the girls didn't even show up. So that kind of stunk. But five of us got together to hang out, take our pics, and stuff. So it's all over except that we can post our final weight loss on Dec. 15th for the article.

I am super grateful to Karen for doing this and taking a chance on us. Way cool. And I seriously don't know if I would be 23 pounds lighter had she not done the article. And it's set me up for cointinuing on. And that's huge.

It is really fun to win, though. LIke I said, I wish I had more to brag about than 23 lbs, but it's still 23 lbs. And it's 29 total. So that's cool. I don't know if I'll end up with the $50 as I think they were going to do a drawing for the $50 and one of us was going to win it, not neccessarily the biggest loser.

And again, the cool thing is that I'm set up to do this new Biggest Loser challenge. I know how hard it is to really do this, where a lot of people won't make it. But I don't think 23 lbs is going to do it for the new challenge.

Monday, December 04, 2006

My latest update I'm sending to the Eagle

Well, today is the last day of the Eagle’s weight loss challenge.   Here is the update I sent Karen.


From: Ken Rawson
Sent: Monday, December 04, 2006 2:39 PM
To: 'Karen Shideler'
Subject: RE: See you Monday!


Karen!!!  While I am probably not going to end up as the winner, I just wanted to again, thank you for this opportunity!  I don’t think I’d be 29 pounds lighter without your help!  Thanks so much!


See below for the answers to the questions.  And thanks again!





From: Karen Shideler
Sent: Wednesday, November 29, 2006 1:27 PM
To: Ken Rawson;
Subject: See you Monday!



I'm getting ready to leave the office for an out-of-town conference but will be back in plenty of time to see you at the Y on Monday -- Central Y, pix at 6:30 p.m. SHARP (if I have my way). I'll try to be there by 6.
PLEASE WEAR something you couldn't before or something you just feel great in. We decided boxy red T-shirts wouldn't be the best way to show off the new you!

Here's your homework. I'd love for you to e-mail me your responses sometime Monday or bring a printout with you. If not, you get to stay after class to chat with me!

1. How much did you lose? (Weigh anytime Monday for the final number). How did that compare with your goal?

[Ken Rawson] I lost a total of 23 pounds.  I gained three pounds during the Thanksgiving holiday and lost those three pounds last week.  So I’m still at 23.  My goal was 15 so I feel great that I made my goal.  I wish I would have treated this more seriously and really tried to lose as much as I could have.  But losing weight is really so difficult! 


2. How hard was it to lose weight? Did being part of this group make it harder or easier? Why?

[Ken Rawson] Waking up every morning at 4:45 AM to go work out at the Y was tough.  Keeping a food journal and counting calories was inconvenient.  But keeping from emotional eating and snacking out of boredom was really difficult.  Being a part of this group and competition gave me the drive to really take my weight loss seriously.  Having people ask me how it’s going was big encouragement to not slack.  And hearing friends who have been reading the articles was so affirming.  I don’t think I’d have had the initiative to change my lifestyle without being a part of this group.


3. Where do you go from here? Are you going to try to lose more, maintain what you've lost, or dig into something you've denied yourself for the past three months? What have you learned about what you need to do? (See Ken's blog, below)

[Ken Rawson] As previously noted I’ve joined the YMCA’s Battle of the Bulge to get me through the holidays.  I’ve also signed up for KSN’s and Play it Again Sport’s Biggest Loser competition which runs for 90 days.  I still have a lot of weight to lose so I’m going to keep doing what I have been doing and take it even more seriously.   There are several things that are important that I’ve got to do to be successful.  Exercising in the morning is part of that.  When I don’t exercise in the morning, I rarely, and I mean RARELY, make time to exercise later on.  Also, I’ve got to stick to my counted calories and logging them in my food journal.  It is a lot easier to lose weight by controlling the calories I’m digesting instead of the calories I’m burning.  In one hour I burn 750 calories.  If I do that, then I can burn 1 pound, ONE crappy pound, in five days.  One pound = Five hours of cardio work.  WOW!  Also, my body burns 2500 calories a day.  So if I limit myself to 1500 calories, and I’m doing an hour of cardio for five days, I’ll burn at least 3 lbs a week.


4. What advice do you have for readers? This is the part I'd really like you to focus on, because this wrapup will also have sort of a "here's help for making your own New Year's resolutions" feel to it.

[Ken Rawson] 1.  Join the Biggest loser challenge with KSN and Play it Again Sports.  Just don’t lose as much weight as me so I can win the money.  My sweet wife and I would like to adopt a baby and could really use that $5,000.  So if you join, please sabotage yourself for my sake.  I’ll really appreciate it.


2.       Get involved with a group or find a friend to do this with.  I’ve been doing a cycling class on Tuesdays and Thursdays with the Y and more times than they probably know, their encouragement, camaraderie, and friendship has been the motivation I needed to go workout. 


3.       Keep a food log and count your calories.  Whenever I don’t do this, I slip up.  I’ll eat stuff without thinking about it and I’ll eat bad stuff that won’t help me achieve my goal.


4.        Get a workout DVD.  Sure I look like a dork and I feel like a complete idiot doing exercise videos at home, but after I lose 400 calories and am a sweaty mess, I’m feeling pretty dang good!


5.       Join a message board on the internet.  Two message boards that I check out are and  The first one is for the tv show The Biggest Loser and the second one is from WebMD.  You’d be amazed at the stories out there of people who have really lost weight and become healthy.  It’s so encouraging!!!


6.       Get off the couch.  Really.  Just do something.  Anything that you do is better than doing nothing.  If you lose one measly pound a week, after a year, it looks pretty good!  Take the stairs instead of the elevator, eat an orange instead of a bag of chips, skip the bread at Carabba’s, build a snowman with your kids, play with your spouse, whatever!


5. Anything else?

[Ken Rawson] While losing 23 pounds has not been as earth shattering as the people on the TV show “The Biggest Loser” the feeling of fitting in my clothes, moving my belt another notch, feeling great, living a healthier life for my kids and sweet wife, and watching the man on the inside slowly emerge from the man on the outside have been the greatest rewards so far.  Thank you for taking a chance on this story and giving me an opportunity to not just share my life with other people, but providing the impetus of change that was so needed.


You rock!





If you haven't looked at Ken's blog lately, check it out. I especially liked this paragraph:

The bad news:  Last time I weighed in, I was at 259.  Today I am 262.  That sucks.  I wasn’t planning on gaining weight back.  But I only worked out 3 times and I didn’t count my calories and I ate when stressed.  I know better.  If I don’t count calories, if I don’t physically write it down, I can’t control myself.  And when I’m stressed, I need better methods of relief.  I’m amazed at how weak willed I am and how easily I’ll go back to my fat self if I don’t take this seriously.

I don't see Ken as weak-willed at all -- and I am delighted at the insight he has about the necessity to take health seriously, and about what he needs to do to get there.

You all have been awesome. Thanks for all your help -- and see you Monday!


Thanksgiving Redemption

Alright, I weighed in this morning and I'm back to 259. This is the weight I weighed before thanksgiving.

Couple thoughts here: 1. Although I worked out Mon-Friday and twice on Mon and Tues, on Thursday-Sunday I didn't eat as well as I could have. That is so frustrating because I was really hoping to be at 248 and I'm still 11 pounds away from that.

2. I haven't lost any more weight for the Eagle contest so I may not win that, and that stinks. I was really hoping for that. So my total weight loss for that is 23 lbs, I started at 282 and now weigh 259. My goal weight was 15 pounds and I made that. So that is good.

3. What else is good is that when I started this blog I was at 282. And I'm 29 pounds from there. Again.

4. What is even better is that when I weigh in on Friday, I will AT LEAST be at 258 which will be 30 pounds, and that's great. My next biggie will be 248 which if I lose that by Christmas will be the best gift of all.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Update and Another Biggest Loser Competition

Well, this week has been super fast!!! I did two workouts on Monday, two workouts on Tuesday, and good workouts on Wed, Thurs, and Friday. Yesterday's eating wasn't good, but the other days were fine. Sooooo...I'm so hopeful that Monday's weigh in will rock.

In other news, KSN and Play it Again Sports are teaming up to do a Kansas' Biggest Loser and this time it's for real cash! $5K and $3,500 in furniture! Dude, that's some motivation!!! And it's free! Wild!

So I weighed in with my clothes on and I think it was 264 3/4. The rules are that you have 90 days to lose as much weight as you can and you can only lose a max of 2% a week. So they give you a shirt, some official biggest loser info, take your pic, weigh you, etc. So I can lose a max of 68 lbs by Feb 27th!

Dude, if I did that I would wiegh lesss than 200 lbs!!! That would be so freaking sweet!!! So that's some sweet motivation! The only catch will be that people who weigh more than me can lose more. I guess there are some guys who weighted in at 400+ lbs.

I guess the owner of Play It Again Sports is a big fan of the show and wanted to do it and is pretty serious about doing it as well. He lost 16 lbs. the first week! I want to write hime and thank him for doing this. Way cool.

My only advantage is two fold: #1 it's the holidays and people, including me, are pretty weak during the holidays. #2 from doing this Wichita Eagle thing, I know how really difficult this is to do on your own. It's really hard for me.

But I love the opportunity to win big. And I love the spirit behind it. I'm so grateful for the Eagle because I don't know if I would be nearly 30 lbs lighter if I hadn't done this! So I'll be even more grateful for the Play it Again Sports thing if I can lose 30-60 more!!!! That would so rock!

Here's a link to the info. Way cool. good luck!

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Mike Morrow...This guy is amazing!

I was on the Biggest Loser message board today and came across this guy's story. His name is Mike Morrow and he weighed 390+ pounds. It's very inspiring. Enjoy.

My story is pretty simple. I spent a bunch of years traveling around the country doing consulting, eating in nice restaurants and sitting on my rump. I was a great big guy for the better part of a decade and a half. My max weight was 390+ pounds, frankly at 35 my weight was affecting all aspects of my life even though I didn't realize it at the time. When we are dramatically outside of our healthy weight range how we feel daily even our attitude toward life and how we deal with our loved ones is effected by our weight. The weight effects our sleep, our energy level and our ability to do things. Weight is insidious because it creeps on slowly, stealing small bits of our life at a time so we don't even realize what is happening.

I had been on diets a bunch of times over that decade and a half period. I told myself all the lies about why I was overweight and that just around the corner was a magic pill that would help me to lose this weight and be healthy. I wanted to be a healthy weight, I just didn't want it badly enough to make the changes required to make it happen.

Until we had our daughter I was never honest with myself about what I was doing. She was my personal angel that woke me up out of the food induced coma I had been in. That wakeup call came when my daughter was about 3 years old. I realized I was stealing part of her childhood by being overweight and out of shape. I did not have the energy or could not physically do the things she wanted to do with me. I also had concerns about my ability to help her in the event of an emergency. Once my mind started drifting down this path, I realized that if I did not make some major changes, it was likely I would not see her graduate high school or get married nor would I see my grandchildren. At this point the most mortifying thought of all hit: That I may actually let my daughter down! Letting my little girl down was simply not an option.

Weight loss really is all about taking in less calories than you burn. Honestly if controlling there intake is all a person does they will lose weight. I didn't do any exercise at all until I had lost 100 pounds (If I had it to do over again I would have started exercising much earlier in the journey). My "plan" involved eating 1500'ish calories a day 6 days a week. One day a week (After the first 3 months and I could trust myself) I would go out to eat with my wife and daughter. I allowed myself order off the menu getting whatever I wanted. I think this kept me from craving things I always knew I was one week from being able to have whatever. I would skip desert and the bread basket and wouldn't eat insane portion sizes. I think the difference between this time and all the others was the way I looked at this journey, always before I felt I was giving something up, this time I really looked at the diet as "getting something" I was getting my life back. I never once the whole time felt deprived, which was so different from any previous attempt.

The biggest part of weight loss is what goes in your mouth. Exercise is great for your health but it is a rough way to burn off any substantial amount of weight. Once I got down to a "reasonable" size (300 pounds :) )I started walking five miles a day. I used walking to build my fitness level. After 9 months or so I kicked up the activity level. My weight loss rate didn't change much once I added exercise with the exception of not losing a pound the first month I was walking (this was VERY unusual for me).

At least for me, consistency is king, only eating the amount of calories that match my plan and exercising on a daily basis has been very effective for me. This is not to say I don't have days where I eat what I want and throw caution to the wind, even those days are "planned" in that they aren't spur of the moment. At this point I allow myself to eat pretty much whatever I want (within reason) but if it is going to be dramatically outside my normal eating patterns plan for it. I sort of have a 24 hour rule, if I have some sort of evil craving I allow myself to eat it but not until tomorrow and by then the insane urge has generally passed. For me that seems to cut down on the mindless munching.

I have been at my goal weight now for a little over 16 months. So far my weight has been quite steady. I find I can eat quite a bit, if anything I have to be careful not to drift lower due to my activity level and overall better food choices. I workout for at least an hour of cardio a day and usually life weights 3 or 4 times a week for between 30 and 40 minutes.

I feel truly blessed to have been given this gift of a second chance at life. I am active on weight loss forums on the internet. I hope that I can encourage others that are struggling with weight as I did. I know how difficult weight loss can be and hope I can possibly provide the spark that starts someone on their journey. I don't have any magical answers to what will work for weight loss for anyone, but I want to be the cheering section for those that are trying.

If a sedentary 390+ pound middle aged man can drop 58.97% of his body weight and go from a BMI of 52.9 to 160 pounds with a BMI of 21.7 anything is possible! I am including a few before and after pictures in this post people often ask to see them and I have been told they provide some encouragement, it is in that vein I share them with you.

This picture is a montage of me before I started losing weight. Pictures from this era are fairly difficult to come by as you can imagine I was not a huge fan of the camera.

This picture was a fun shot we took as I got close to my goal weight. If you look closely it is my whole family in an old pair of my pants. My wife and I are each in a leg and my daughter is between us. The pants are zipped and buttoned.

This is just a before and after comparison shot. The after is a picture of me running in my first triathlon.

Another before and after comparison shot. The after here is just of me before a training ride for the race I mentioned above.

May God be between you and harm in all the empty places where you must walk.


Monday, November 27, 2006

Day 41

Well, the 40 days are officially over.  And in those 40 days I lost 20 lbs.

The bad news:  Last time I weighed in, I was at 259.  Today I am 262.  That sucks.  I wasn’t planning on gaining weight back.  But I only worked out 3 times and I didn’t count my calories and I ate when stressed.  I know better.  If I don’t count calories, if I don’t physically write it down, I can’t control myself.  And when I’m stressed, I need better methods of relief.  I’m amazed at how weak willed I am and how easily I’ll go back to my fat self if I don’t take this seriously.

The good news:  I still have one more week to really do well.  I worked out this morning.  I’m gonna try to do 2 workouts each day including Sat and Sun and I still have Monday before our pic.  I’d still love, LOVE to weigh 248, that would mean 40 pounds since the summer, and that would rock.

Great blog post by McNutt

Matthew McNutt is the youth pastor from Maine who made it back on the Biggest Loser reality show.  He has a great post about Thanksgiving.  He is the man.



Wednesday, November 22, 2006

The latest Eagle Update...and Rawson takes the lead

Deadline nears, some goals revised
The Wichita Eagle

The pressure is on.

WichiTalk's Weight-Loss Challenge team members are closing in on their deadline.

Earlier this year, WichiTalk chose six readers to go public with their weight-loss efforts for three months. We let them set their own goals and decide their own weight-loss methods.

We're planning a wrap-up about their efforts for the Dec. 19 issue of WichiTalk. That should be perfect timing for people planning New Year's resolutions.

In the meantime, here's a look at how the six are doing:

Tom Allen
Allen, 43, a teacher and coach at Northwest High School, wanted to lose 40 pounds but realized that was unrealistic.

He has lost 15 and has learned that South Beach Diet snack bars help curb unhealthy snacking.
Allen is starting basketball season, so his days are even longer than they had been, running from 3 a.m. to 7 p.m. He plans to catch up on exercise -- and sleep -- over Thanksgiving break and to "stay away from the potatoes and limit the pie."

Jamie Goltz
Goltz, 23, who works for the Army National Guard and the Wichita Marriott, wanted to lose 25 to 30 pounds.

She has maintained a 20-pound loss and may show a bit of weight gain in the final report -- because she's pregnant. As a result, her workouts aren't as strenuous and she's being careful not to get dehydrated while still doing "something healthy for myself and the baby."

Goltz has gotten used to smaller portions and doesn't have any major cravings. "I don't even like eating ice cream. It just doesn't taste good to me right now," she says.

Toni Harden
Harden, 46, is a paraeducator at Wells Special Education Center and wanted to lose 20 to 30 pounds.

She has lost 11, less than she'd hoped but not bad given some health concerns, including diabetes.

Harden and her sister will cook Thanksgiving dinner. "My plan will be to drink lots of water during the morning and to consume very small meals" through the day. "With several diabetics in our family, we will have sugar-free desserts."

Crystal Iseman
Iseman, 26, a stay-at-home mom and day-care provider, wanted to lose 25 pounds.

She has lost 13 and is disappointed it's not more. But she also admits that being swamped with homework (she's finishing a college degree) and work means she hasn't paid as much attention as she should to her eating and exercise habits.

Iseman has learned that "drinking lots and lots of water keeps your appetite at bay." But she'll enjoy Thanksgiving, knowing that if she deprives herself, "I tend to end up giving in and eating more."

Andrea McClellan
McClellan, 31, a stay-at-home mom, wanted to lose 25 pounds.

She's lost 18 but regained 3. "I did it to myself," she says. "I have not been working out as much as I should, and my water intake is poor... Boy, did I mess up!"

At Thanksgiving, "I plan to eat what I want, only small servings. Only two times a year do I get sweet potatoes... I will try to eat a spoonful versus a plateful."

She also knows the role that state of mind plays: "When I am not feeling happy, I eat... I just need to start my day feeling good about myself, and the rest will follow."

Ken Rawson
Rawson, 30, director of student ministries at First United Methodist Church, wanted to lose 15 pounds.

He has lost 23 by "counting my calories and keeping it to 1,500, choosing wisely, which means smaller portions and healthier options." He has been exercising 45 to 90 minutes a day and has signed up for the YMCA's Battle of the Bulge, an effort to prevent weight gain during the holidays.

You can read more about his progress on his blog:

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Day 35 and I'm feeling ALIVE

Man, what a great feeling to be taking initiative!  Last night, even though it was 10 PM I still got in one of the BL DVD workouts and shed 200 more calories.  Got up this morning and did the spin class and it rocked.

When I first started coming to the Y and especially the spin class, man it was kicking my butt!  Today I got in there early to test out bikes (they all have different resistance tendencies) to find one that would not be easy.  So I picked the hardest out of three and it was STILL easy.  So today, I took initiative and instead of letting the class direct my speed and effort, I led out and worked my butt off and it was GREAT.

Now, don’t get me wrong.   I wasn’t leading the class and no one was checking me out, going, “Check out Ken, he is rocking today!”  But by myself I knew I was really pushing it and that was cool.  So I busted out 500 calories in 40 minutes!

Monday, November 20, 2006

The hardest thing about know, other than, uh, motivation

One hour and 45 minutes.


That’s how long it takes for me to walk, from my desk, to the Y, change clothes, gear up, stretch out, do cardio for 60 minutes, shower, dress, and walk back to the church.

That’s a big chunk of the day to dedicate to losing weight.  That’s a lot to ask.  And that’s why it is DEFINITELY easier to do in the morning before work.  Most people aren’t willing to give up 2 hours of their day OR MORE (I mean, we aren’t even talking about any strength training!) just to lose weight.  It’s easier to drink a supplement, fast, or walk.  But maybe not better.  Of course, doing something is better than doing nothing.

Day 34

Well, 34 days into this and it’s been a great ride.  This last week my parents were here for four days so I didn’t do too well, eating or exercising.  But I’m back today.  I’m gonna do some work then head on over to the Y.

Also, this whole thing is ending on Dec. 4th so I still have 15 days.  I’d like to break the 250 mark.  That’s only 10 lbs.  Can I do 10 lbs in 15 days?  I think so!!!!!  It’d be so great to weigh less than 250.  That’d be sweet.  So that’s what I’m looking at!

Sean, you rock!  We’ll get doing this thing together.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

My update for the Eagle

Alright, here is what I gave Karen at the Eagle. When it comes out in the paper I’ll post it.


1) How much have you lost?


[Ken] 23 pounds!!!!! (really, in the last 28 days!  You don't have to print that  ;^)  )


2) How are you going to get through Thanksgiving? (If it's at your house, what will you do differently? If you're going someplace, what will you do to keep from undoing all your hard work?)


[Ken] I'm going to keep doing what's been getting me here, counting my calories and keeping it to 1500, choosing wisely which means smaller portions and healthier options, and exercising for 45-90 minutes each day!  I also joined the YMCA's battle of the bulge to help keep me accountable too through the holidays and the year.


3) What have you "discovered" that helps with the weight-loss journey? I've found that Starbucks Low-Fat Frappucino Bars will get me through a chocolate fix. My editor, who has been slowly losing for quite a while now, said salsa and Egg Beaters (for lack of a better generic term) are her salvation. What things have you "discovered"?


[Ken] I eat this Quaker brand weight loss oatmeal in the morning and it keeps me satisfied until I eat lunch.  Also Olive Garden has a Chicken Giardino that is REALLY good and low in calories.  Spangle's has a 40 calorie sugar free jell-o, I just wish it was less than a buck!  And Spangle's fat free chicken on pita, is okay too.  Subway is a good lunch too.  There are all kinds of great options available for anyone who wants to do this!






Last night I noticed that my jeans were clean. No fat person enjoys putting on jeans that have been in the drier because they are so tight.
Except for me! I couldn't wait to put on my jeans today and they felt so nice!

I am a loser...really

So because people have been talking about the BL dvd on the message boards, and because I'm not running outside again for a l o n g time, I bought the dvd yesterday and tried it out. I'm such a dork. I couldn't even do the low intensity work out the whole time. Really great dvd.

and I'm a loser because I haven't put my blinds up in the living room so anyone who drove by my house saw a big fat guy doing an exercise video. Pretty funny.


Four more pounds, baby!!!! Yeah!!!! I need to send in a report to the Wichita Eagle today on my latest weight loss so I weighed in two days early. That makes 23 pounds through this competition (in the last 29 days) and 29 pounds total!

Oh yeah, and I did my usual Bobby Reed today.

And I almost forgot, over the last 8 days, I missed three days because of that running crap, and a Sunday, and I didn't keep my food log all that well, but I did try to eat well. So I feel pretty good about that!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

I am so not ready for prime time

On the Biggest Loser last week the at home contestants, two of them, made it back to the ranch. And the big point they were trying to say is that while they lost a ton of weight, they weren’t nearly as strong as the Ranchers. One of the things this dude named marty did was he grabbed this half ball like thing and was doing push ups with it. I don’t know how to describe this thing other than it is half an exerball on a plastic platform. Let me see if I can find a pic…

So Marty has it upside down and he’s grabbing it and doing push ups while Bob is saying, “Pop it!!! Make it POP!” as in not literally but bounce back, really push hard off of it and get up in the air. Needlesstosay, the at home guy, Jaron, has a tough time with it and the other guys are like, “Dude, we were so there when we got started. It’s no big deal.”

Then I’m watching the Biggest Loser exercise video extras and it has Suzy from the first season struggling to do this.

Okay, back to today…

I’m in the Spin class and there is one of those exerball things and I decide that I’m gonna try it. So after my work out I go into the empty room. I get on my knees. I turn the exerball thing over and get into the push up position.

I “pop” it.

I did it! Eh, no big deal. I must be better off than all those guys who couldn’t even do it once. Let me see…I’ll try it again…

I “pop” it, again.

This time, when I landed, my sweaty left hand slipped off and my elbow and pinky CRASH into the floor and the exerball thing hits me in the face!

Ah, so freaking hilarious! If only it could have been caught on tape, I’d had made Youtube hall of fame.

Day 28...back on the bike

Even though I only got 4 hours of sleep last night, I still made it to Spin Class and busted out the bike.  After that I did 30 minutes on the new EFX machines…ooh, nice.  Tomorrow I need to give an update to the Eagle so I’m going to weigh in 2 days early.  We take our last pic on Dec. 5th so that still gives me another couple weeks to drop more weight!!!

I’m not expecting a big jump on the scales for this last 8 day period, but anything will be great!

Lastly, I went out to BBQ today and did great!  Usually eating out is a killer as I can’t control myself.  Instead I had a salad with pulled pork with fat free ranch dressing.   The only bad thing was the sprinkle of cheese on the salad, but other than that, I rocked.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Oooh...i almost forgot!

So I see the Y trainer today, I think her name is Melissa.  Anyway, she stops by and says, “Hey, you took a week off!”  So I tell her the whole story.  After my hour is up I’m walking back and I stop by and I ask her, “Why, when I ran, I kept my heart rate up and exerted the exact same amount of energy during my little walk/run thing and I burned the same 750 calories, which is what I do every day, why did it hurt so freaking bad?  Why did running on the ground make it so difficult if I did the same amount of work?  It doesn’t make sense!”

She explained that it’s a lot easier in the gym, even the treadmill has lots of give, so it’s easier to exercise.  My thought is SCREW THAT, I’m never running outside again, that is freaking ridiculous!!!  She laughed and said, “It’s really hard on your joints.  You just need to lose a little more weight and running will be great.”

I looked at her and said, “A little weight?  Yeah right!  How about a LOT of weight!”  She laughed and said that she doesn’t like to be discouraging so she says, “a little weight” but yes, “a lot of weight.”

Good times.  Fat men should not run.

Day...what the heck is today? Day 27

Well, running took it out of me!  Thursday, Friday, and most of the day Saturday I spent limping around.  My legs were absolutely killing me.  I was dropping Advil like it was Halloween candy but to no effect!

So I didn’t exercise.  I didn’t even realize till Friday that I still could have done some upperbody weight training even though my legs were killing me.  Of course, at 5:00 am I was just thinking about how much I hurt.  At least I know for next time.

And my eating sucked.  Which is bittersweet.  I found out that I’m really not missing much with my new healthy plan of eating.  The other food didn’t satisfy like I thought it would.  It was just…heavy.

So I hit the ol’ oatmeal this morning and an hour and 750 calories of cardio.  I so didn’t want to do it.  I was just dreading it.  Even to the point of stepping on the treadmill I was trying to talk myself out of it.  But I didn’t.  And I felt great.  It’s good to be back.

This Wednesday I turn in another update to the Wichita Eagle so that’ll be fun.  I doubt I’ve lost much more weight since the past four days have sucked, but every pound counts and I feel great!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Day 22: Freaking Running

Dude!!!!  Yesterday I missed the gym because I overslept.  And for some reason I had some motivation last night to do some running.   So I strapped on the POLAR and did some running!  I did interval running, of running for 1 ½ minutes and walking for 1 ½ minutes…not because I wanted to but because that’s pretty much all I had in me. 

Nevertheless, my legs were KILLING me and they still are TODAY!  Dude, running on ground instead of a treadmill is SO much harder!!!  Nevertheless, an hour of running and exercising and keeping my heart rate up still only equals 754 calories burned.

Then this morning I did the ol’ Bobby Reed plus 15 min on the ARC trainer and while it was so much easier than last night, still an hour only nets me 750 calories burned.  Weird.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Day 21: 6 more pounds!!!

Yesterday was the official 20th day of my 40 days of Fitness.  And I lost another 6 pounds!


So, that is…


6 lbs in the last 10 days


19 lbs in the last 20 days


25 lbs since I began this blog.


I never thought 263 would be a good number…

Monday, October 30, 2006

Days 11 and 12

No working out Saturday and Sunday. Saturay I was a at a conference all day and did pretty well. Dinner sucked but I still got away with a day under 2000 calories. Yesterday was awesome. No exercise but 1500 calories was great!

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Chocolate milk is the devil!

I was at a conference today and they had subway for lunch. Easy to do well with that. I even gave up my cookie.

Dinner was a little tougher. Fried chicken. I had a breast/ribs thing. Took off the skin. And I had a couple cups of canned carrots and green beans. I gave in to a piece of that jell-o like cake thing without the frosting, but the topper was three glasses of choc. milk.

I had no idea there were so many calories in chocolate milk! So even with an over estimation of the number of calories I consumed today, I was still under 2K, which is great since I still burn 2500 calories a day.

Day 11!!! The weigh in

Well the power went out and so the alarm didn't go off. I was hurting for time so I was going to postpone the weigh in till tomorrow. But I couldn't wait!

10 days of keeping my calories between 1500-1800...and 8 days of excercise between 45-60 minutes...

Thirteen pounds!!!! Ah yeah!!! 13!!! So from the start that is 19 pounds total! I cannot wait till day 21!!! Talk about motivation! It's not as big of a loss as the the contestents on The Biggest Loser but dude, 13 pounds is GREAT and feels GREAT. I can't wait to lose more!!!!

Friday, October 27, 2006

Day 10

I made it to the "I'll want to rip out my hamstrings" Kick class today. I had to test out the Polar watch so that I can at least tell them, "You know, I'd like to do your Karate Kid class, but according to the Polar, it doesn't keep my heart rate up where I need it. Sorry."

Good luck with that. 167 high, 142 avg. Smaller average than cycling or other excercise, but meeting other people to work out may just be motivation I need.

I also threw down 30 min on an arc trainer and without the Polar I would have half-assed it. So that is sweet. Still, with over an hour of cardio, I still couldn't kill over 1000 calories. Which makes me suspect of the calorie counting on the fitness machines.

Tomorrow is the weigh in. I cannot wait!!!

day 9 wrap up

Yesterday was good. I was going on a hot date with my sweet wife so I wanted to be able to eat a real meal at dinner. So I starved all day to save up my calories. I had oatmeal in the morning and made it to lunch where I had 1/2 chicken breast then up to dinner I had 1/2 cup of mac and cheese and then we went to T.G.I. Fridays.

Which was underwhelming. With being so hungry nothing sounded good to me. And thier prices were pretty high. And portions small. Which was nice in a healthy way, and bad as a consumer.

Nevertheless, I tried to gorge but couldn't. I still ended up eating really well.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Day's all fine

Of course, it almost wasn’t.  I almost didn’t make it today.  Last night, after we put the kids to bed, we watched the taped episode of Biggest Loser.  Then it was 11 PM.  Do I stay up and work or go to bed early to go exercise?

I woke up at midnight.  Got off the couch.  And set my alarm for…yeah right…4:45 AM.  It’s the thought that counts.

4:45 AM:  I got out of bed.  Turned off the alarm.  Moved to the couch where I argued back and forth, Sleep?  Or Exercise?

Working out won!  I got to the gym and hit my cycling class!  I am the man.

165 and then some!

I got the Polar watch yesterday and brought it to the cycling class.  Other than feeling like I’m wearing a bra, it was cool.  My heart rate monitor was cool the whole time and I got to see how hard I was pushing it.  At one point I was just hovering around 158…and then 160…so I kicked it up and tried to get to 165.  It didn’t work.  But then, I hit it!  And I hit even more.  And the coolest thing about the watch (so far) is that when I was done it had my high of 167 and my average of 152.  So cool.  Don’t know if I’ll keep it yet, but so far it was pretty stinking cool.

Sidebar:  The watch barely fits my wrist.  Now, I know I’m a fatty, but please, make a watch for the fat guys to wear!!!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Heart Rate Level 166...Yeah...Right.

So according to this Jillian chick I’m supposed to work out at 85% which would be a HRL of 166.

After completing the Bob Reed, I hit the treadmill for another 15 minutes.  I set the mode to Heart Rate, which means that you set the heart rate and it will work you up to that heart rate and keep you there.  So this is my chance to feel what 166 is like.

Uh…yeah right.  I couldn’t even get my heart rate up to 160 without having to jump off.  I don’t know what I’m going to do, but it’s gonna be a while till I can get up to 85%.

Day 8...Feelin' Great

Almost didn’t make it this morning.  Jen and I worked really hard last night and didn’t get to bed till Midnight.  I woke up at 5 am knowing I needed to go exercise and hurry up and get to work with so much to do at work.  But I decided to camp out on the couch and sleep for ½ hour…

So my son wakes me up at 7 am.  Oops.  What do I do?  I need to get to work so I can pick up the kids at school.  But I’ve got to work out.

So I went to the Y and busted out the original Bobby Reed (hill level 10 on the ARC for 45 minutes).  I can’t wait to weigh in!!!

Day 7 Wrap Up...The hardest choice so far

So I kicked but in the cycling class and really pushed it hard.  All I had to eat was oatmeal and light fare at chipotle.  When I got home Jen was cooking meatballs.  Man, she is such a good cook!  She was very patient and kind and loving while I tried to figure out how many calories was in each meatball.  After what seemed like eternity it came out to around 122 calories each.  Knowing that including the banana I was munching on right then, I still had 800 some odd calories for dinner.  So at first I decided that I could have 6 meatballs.  But I want some green beans and they are cheap.  But then came the decision:

Sidebar:  We have this great family at church named the Williams’.  Their oldest daughter Cassia makes some mean bread called Bird Seed Bread.  Man, it is so good!  The bread makes a mess, but it’s hard to beat toasted with butter.  Being that it is homemade bread I don’t have a clue how many calories are in it.  I looked at our butter and it’s 70 calories for 1 TB.  So I figure I can get away with 1 tsp for 1/3 of the calories…uhhh….no.  I don’t think so.

So here I am with a 200 calorie awesome bread and butter.  Well, I have to have one so I decide I’ll only have 5 meatballs.  But I still have the green beans to account for so I’ll only have 4 meatballs. 

I put three on my plate.  Polish them off, the bird seed toast, and about 2 cups of green beans.  I count up my calories.  I’m still under.  I can squeeze in a meatball or I can go over with toast…

So I made the decision.  Toast.  I’m sure it wasn’t the wisest choice, but I think I would have cried and felt the restriction.  I think it was a little mini battle won of rewarding myself.  Yesterday completed the first time ever that I had exercised 5 out of 7 days and kept myself to 1500 calories each day.  Hooray.  My reward is toast.


Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Weigh In

So today is Day 7 and I exercised this morning with the cycling class and pushed it hard.  Tomorrow will be the first week that I’ve ever worked out 5 out of 7 days and kept my calories to 1500 each day.  I so want to see what my total is so far.  Yesterday someone said that they can really tell that I’ve lost weight.  I love hearing that.  But I’m going to wait.  I got 40 days.  I’ll weigh in on the 10th day so I can get a bigger pay off.  But I’m anxious!

Day 6

Day six is done!  I still haven’t been able to pull a McNutt and exercise 90 min in the morning and an additional 60 min in the evening, but once again, I busted out some upper body work and an hour of cardio and I ate well!  Even busted out McDonald’s and got an ice cream, asian crispy chicken salad with light Italian dressing, and I still had 100 calories to spare for the day.

My evil temptress wife tried to reward me with a cookie when we got home, but I refused! 


Monday, October 23, 2006

I'm confused

I need some definitive answers on the Heart Rate Target and exercising. I was set to buy the Polar watch but cancelled my order out of confusion!

Here’s the issue:

Allegedly if you work out at 55%-80% of your Heart Rate (other websites say a little different number) 50% of your calories burned come from stored fat. If you work out 80-90% it goes down to 35% of your calories coming from stored fat and the other comes from quickly replaced calories or gluten or something from somewhere else. So the idea is to work out at a less strenuous level and you’ll lose the fat. This is what Polar says, but of course, they are selling the heart rate monitor. And it’s what “the gym” says, but of course they’d like you to work out longer, spend more time there, purchase more services, make you feel like you need them.

Is this a conspiracy?

Other websites I found yesterday talk about yes it’s true, but if you are wanting to lose weight, then you need to work out harder, because it’s all about calories burned. While most of the calories may come from other Carbs that are easily replaceable, you burn the same amount of fat, whether it’s 30% or 50%.

Here’s just one of the many sites that you can get by googling “Myth of Fat Burning Zone.”

So what do I do? I want to get the most bang for my buck when I’m working out. I also don’t want to kill myself if #1 I’m going to hate excercising, #2 I’m not going to burn more fat.

Is there a clear answer?

(Of course, if anyone read this blog, that’d help. I did add it to my signature in the biggest loser message board, so we’ll see. I also posted a similar question there.)

UPDATE: I did get a quick response from the Biggest Loser MSG board. Which directed me to to read an excerpt out of former BL trainer, Jillian.

She says, that the fat burning zone is a myth. And when it comes down to it, to burn as many calories as possible.

She says to work out at the 85% level, which for me would be 166. Whoa! I excercised this morning and tried to keep it to 140ish. Maybe I need to buy the watch anyway...

For further reference the book is "Winning by Losing: Drop the Weight, Change your Life" by Jillian Michaels. Pages 152-154.

Day 6

Okay, I’m buying into the brainwashing.  I felt great today exercising.  Like I could have done it for hours.  I’ve heard of Runner’s High, but maybe I hit the fat guy high.  I don’t know, it was easy.  Worked out the chest again since it was fully recovered and did an hour of cardio.  I feel great!  Brought a ½ sandwich and a smoothie to work. 

Day 5 and I'm still alive

Alright!  Day 5 is done!  No exercise.  My hamstrings were still retreating, but finally my chest was good.  Did great with eating!


Had Chipotle for dinner.  And I really tried to do well.  Two servings of chicken, two servings of their fajita mix, and one serving of the corn salsa.


Well, Chipotle is super fat in the first place.  We’re talking 1000 calories plus for a burrito. So I skipped the tortilla and rice and cheese.  Pretty good right?  Not really.


Their fajita mix is 100 calories.  Dude, obviously I’m getting more than green bell peppers and onions!  And the Corn Salsa was 100 calories!  Dude, that is the last time I get that.  Usually salsa is a freebie.  You can have tons and it’s like 15-50 calories.  The chicken was 219 calories, twice, so a total of 738 calories.  100 more than I was wanting to end the day, but still good.  And I had a banana as a snack.  Yep, over my count, but still, that’s good for a snack!  Still sub 2K.


Saturday, October 21, 2006

Escaped with a flesh wound of 255

Well, I almost won. I went to Catacombs and didn't eat pizza, or candy, or drink any IBC. Truly, Saturdays have been a serious downfall. Probably consuming over 1000 calories from 7-11 pm. That can't be good.

So I had hoped to not eat anything. I got there and grabbed the last Diet Pepsi. Nevertheless, I fell for the sexy and suculant Blue Bunny Neoplotian bar (160 calories) with a side of a snack size Reese's cup (95 calories).

Not too bad. But I can do better.

Dinner was great tonight! I was feeling bad for eating so much. Jen made the Olive Garden's Chicken Giardino and it was so good. We put whole grain pasta in there. So I ate about three servings of whole grain pasta, chicken, and lots of veggetables in a light lemony sauce. So I had 500 calories left before dinner, and after Catacombs tonight I would bet that I'm still under 2K for the day.

And if my results from the Body Gem are still accurate, I still burn 2500 calories every day.

Tomorrow is a new day!

What the ???

So I make this awesome sandwich. it is so good. I got the recipe from my friend Todd. I've told him to blog about it.

Yes, it's that good.

Anyway, I'm totalling up the calories...515. Not too bad. Except that I could eat prettty much any burger at McDonald's for 500 calories. Seriously. Big N Tasty, Crispy Chicken Sandwhich and more!

The only trade off is that I'm eating lots better food with a lot less fat intake. But calorie wise, it's similar.

So if I want to stuff my face i need to hang out in the vegetable aisle.

Day 4: Moons Over My Hammy

No, I didn't hit Denny's, but my hamstrings, or "hammies" are freaking KILLING me! What was I thinking doing this Tae Kwan Do class? Every time I kicked my hamstrings must have been cussing me out!

I am feeling it! My triceps are still sore. My shoulders. My chest. And now my legs.

I'm not going to make it to the gym today or to excercising. I'm going to have to work hard at trying to figure out how to excercise at home...especially when it's cold outside. I also have Catacombs tonight which is always a veritable smorgasborg of saturated fat goodness. So I'm gonna have to keep a bottle of water in hand to keep me from straying to the seductive goddess of gorge.

Other than that, today is looking good as far as food take. I figure, even if I'm only able to hit the gym 5 out of 7 days for some serious excercise, if I'm doing well with my calorie count, I should be alright.

Right now I'm just at 1000 calories and I only have a few hours before bed. Good times.