I’m Tired Of Talking Weight Loss

Good sleep

On a recent night out the conversation was directed towards my weight loss…Again.

All the usual questions arose. “what diet did you do – You must exercise a lot – Paleo! What’s that?”.

The last question is the one I hate to talk about. Describing paleo is very difficult when in my mind paleo is a personal thing and not just about food, diet or exercise.

There is nothing worse than getting into an in-depth conversation about what paleo is, with a drunk guy that is overweight and has no intention of ever changing his habits…And to be honest, now I know and understand the benefits of all round good well-being, I am tired of just talking weight loss…

What led to where I am now started with the desire to lose weight, but what I didn’t realise at the time, is weight loss was not a consequence of my diet directly but more a result of my lifestyle.

Part of the problem is that we too often focus on the look of our bodies, rather than the performance of our body.

Aiming to only “look good” rather than perform optimal is the reason most diets fail.

Let’s face it! no-one wants to look good naked but feel like shit all the time, but that’s what’s happening.
Visual is seen as the most important thing and so our vainness is really our downfall.

If we aim for optimal, we gain a host of other benefits from reaching to that level, including better sleep, more energy, clearer tighter skin and of course lasting weight loss.

Unfortunately, most of us think in the moment or as near as, aiming to lose 5lbs in 4-weeks ready for that beach holiday or to fit in a wedding dress.

People that lose a small amount of weight in a short period are actually on the right track, yet they never had the intention of keeping it up and old habits come back.

If we are slightly hungry or bored, we just eat without thought, as long as we cure the hunger or fulfill the need there and then.

And so the story goes…

Optimal or healthy is not something the general population strive to achieve, because we have in our heads that our bodies are older, they can no longer be optimal like when we were 20…But in my mind I can be an optimal 46 year old, which does not mean I’m trying to be as fit or do what I did in my 20’s.

We must stop associating our health by the shape and size of our bodies…assuming that thin is healthy.

Let me tell you. There are a lot of thin people out there struggling and suffering from all-sorts of problems.

We have to learn to look past the physical appearance of our bodies and reach for being optimal in every aspect possible, starting with your gut, frame and muscle.

Everything else will fall into place.

 

Struggling With Me Time

Fun exercise

A lot of my recent post have been about my diet or paleo lifestyle.

But when I started this blog I had bigger dreams…Dreams of taking life by the bollocks and then taking back control of my story.

The main reason I blogged mostly about diet and health is, becasue thats what I feel was holding me back, and if thaqts whats holding me back, then thats whats happening to a lot of others too.

I’m not making excuses, but bad health saps your confidence and your belief in your own abilities to get the most from yourself, and to a certain degree you even become a little dis-embodied from who you once were, or who you want to be.

Sure you may be a confident person or someone that was once confident…But lets face it, at 40+ years, we have lived a little and had our share of shit… Some more than others.

I have always known what I want this blog to be about, but I want to live what I preach or at least have had an experience of what I write about, and hopefully I will find common ground with others out ther 40+ or younger.

The thing that I am finding harder to achieve than I thought I would is “doing stuff”.

The diet and health stuff was/is easy…It’s easy because it happens in the background, and it effects no one else.

The active stuff is time reliant and it has to fit in around family and finacials, which is another balancing act in itself.

I am writing this post in the middle of the kids summer holidays…Anna my partner has had to take most of the time off from work to look after Noah, our 5yr old son, because I have used up nearly all my holiday.

Evenings are a time when I have to be a dad and give Anna a break, which leaves little time for creativity or blogging…And the ideas that float through my head during my work days are usually long forgotton by the time I hit the sack.

Dont get me wrong! I love spending time with my boy and having him off from school. But part of me is eagerly awaiting the end of summer holidays, just so that selfishly I can try to move forward with my ideas, without disturbing family life to much.

I know that there are a lot of families that manage to be active together and have a perfect balance…And that is something I strive to achieve, but for now it has to start with me.

I am the one with the issues and my partner has yet to turn 40…But don’t take this all the wrong way, we are a great family that spends a lot of time together doing things and playing.

Moving The Goal Post

As my jouney progresses I am realisiing how often the goal post move.

Yes I know…I am the one setting the goals, but with each new goal or target comes a new challenge.

Even things as simple as this blog. As I wish my blog to progress, I realise my lack of grammer and blogging skills are becoming another massive hurdle for me to overcome.

All things can be fixed, but its a slow progression, and the realisation of my ability is just another step in the direction or righting this wrong…Which in turn is another part of taking control of my life.

If we can make small progressions in the right direction, we’ll get there in the end…Yet I am not sure there is ever an end?

 

Three Forts Challenge – An Accidental Half Marathon –

3 forts challenge

Let me set the scene.

I’ll be home in about an hour. That was the last thing I said to my miss’s and my boy before I set off on a brisk walk before doing the weekly shop.

My walk is usually a couple of miles over the South Downs near Worthing.
We had planned to take my boy to the Lego shop in Brighton that day, so I was intending on cutting my usual route short.

About an hour before I set off, I had my usual Bulletproof Coffee, as most mornings I am in Ketosis and fasting for around 16 hours. The last time I ate was around 7pm the night before and that day my carb intake was probably around 50-80g, from a little rice, veg and beverages.

Three Forts Challenge

As I approached the place where I usually park the car, I noticed a sign. “Three Forts Challenge. Marathon & half marathon.”
The first thought was that I am going to be dodging runners for the next hour, especially as the path can be very narrow at times.

Luckily I had missed the full marathon, but the half marathon was to begin at 10:30 So I thought I would wait at the start line, to let everybody pass before I set off on my trek.

Everybody passed me and I set off on my merry way.
The first thing I noticed, is that a few of the people didn’t look as though they should be participating in this sort of event. (3 Forts Challenge is a very tough course)

Old and young, fat and thin, all passed me with vigor and enthusiasm, even the ones at the back that walk the course were not holding back on pace.

After a mile and a half, their course veered right, whilst mine veered left.
I could still see the walkers about a quarter of a mile ahead of me and setting a fast walking pace. (compared to me anyway)

Let the experiment begin…

As I was to turn off on my own route, something inside me thought that now is a good time to take part in my own “N=1 experiment”.

So with spontaneity on my side, I turned right instead of left, knowing that there will be trouble at home.
I had upped my pace and was at a steady jog, though I didnt look the part.

As I reached the first refreshment station I declined the bucket of jelly babies, little squares of sugary cakes and orange squash. I jogged past them stating that I am a fat burning man and then listened to the mutterings as got further away.

Listening to my body.

Change music: I was listening to chilled out acoustic music that varied in BPM
I switched to listening to Pod Runner a very cool app that plays music mix’s at selected speeds.

I selected Some house music at 125 BPM and sure enough, without thought my pace and stride improved.

About 3 miles in I had caught up with the last of the walkers and passed them at the bottom of a steep climb. The music kept my pace and I monitored my breathing.

4.5 miles in I overtook another walker and my pace was still good but I had low battery on my phone and switched the music off.
I noticed that my pace varied more now depending on what was going through my head.
I remember thinking of turning back, wondering about the after effects and aches that I would suffer… plus I had no idea how long this would take.

Bear in mind I have never done anything like this… I was not prepared or nourished correctly.
I knew that by now I had been in a fasted state for 16 hours, with nothing more than a dob of butter and some Upgraded Brain Octane inside me.

I think the brain octane helped with the focus and I had to keep telling myself that I was not racing anybody. All I had to do was complete the course and see how my body felt at the end.
I was making mental notes of weak points and stress areas on my body.

I had run some of the course to find out what my body could cope with.
But considering I was wearing walking boots rather than trainers, I was aware of the extra weight on my feet. I also had on a waterproof non-breathable jacket, which made me sweat profusely.

I remember around mile 5,  looking for somewhere to ditch the jacket, but decided on the fact that Paleo man would of had to carry things whilst on long walks. So I tied the thing to my waist and marched ahead.

I found that running up the hills really drained my thighs and running down smashed my ankles and knee joints. So in these zones I kept good pace and ran on the flat areas and slight downhills.

I had passed about 3 refreshment points at this stage and managed not to be taken in by all the goodies on offer.

The half way mark.

three forts challenge routeAs I was approaching the halfway mark, I was thinking more about what would be good for my body rather than trying to stay in ketosis for the whole trek.
After all I am no athlete or even primed for this sort of event (Yet)

I decided that I could carry on in a fasted state but I don’t think I would of noticed to much change over this distance.

I opted to take some refreshments to see if it boosted anything or made a noticeable difference to me.

 

So I stopped for 2 minutes and indulged in a half of banana, 5 jelly babies, two 1inch squares of a cake and a sip of orange squash. (I so wanted to fill my pockets with the Jelly babies)

At the Checkpoint the 2 walkers that I had passed earlier, passed me.
I realized that they new more about pacing themselves than I did.

By now I was suffering a little in my right hip area where I am prone to some inflammation, but my knees that I thought would suffer were doing OK.

My feet didn’t feel to bad although a little achy around my toes, but having good boots is something a learnt a long time ago…And I was thankful I was wearing them today.

Mile 8 had passed the two back markers again but decided to slow down and have a chat with one for about a mile. (which was pleasant)
As we reached a peak I decided that I recovered enough for another jog, this time I managed a fair distance, although my calves felt very tight and ankles where starting to feel slightly inflamed.

I manged to jog up to the checkpoint at about the 10-11 mile stage.
The marshals stood out offering me the goodies I first refused, I jogged past shouting “No thanks I’m still only eating fat”.
I remember the overweight boy in the chair eating a packet of crisp shouting “If you wanna have a heart attack”.

I chuckled to myself as I decided not to go back and educate him.

The last 2 miles

tough terainI think there is something psychological about knowing your nearly there.

My pace was still pretty good and I had been managing my breathing, using the “in through the nose out through the mouth” technique.

I knew that I would suffer with some aches and pains, so I wanted to keep the puffing and panting to a minimum and make sure that I stayed well oxygenated.

My legs in general weren’t to bad depending on the type of terrain.
Again  it was mainly my hips, a bit of lower back pain and my ankles were the worst.

Going down hill across the rutty chalk and mud landscape I could really feel the twisting and impacting on my ankles, and due to the steep decline and slippery condition it’s very hard to moderate your speed here.

But knowing that home is in sight I managed to up my pace a little but not enough to break into a jog.

I could feel the fatigue weighing heavy on my body as a whole by now and thought that if only I had taken some of the essential amino acids I had in the car, before I set off.

I am sure that it was a good few miles back that my body was starting to really feast on my muscles for energy, I think that was the point where the back ache, and my shoulders and arms started to become stressed.

I am sure that by taking the essential aminos would of definitely helped on those last few miles and also with recovery.

100 yards from my van I realized I could relax, I became a little dizzy and my legs became jelly for a moment.

A big sigh of achievement from me, before heading home to lay in a very cold bath.

Completion time 3 hours 20 mins.

After Thoughts…

I am really glad I did the 3 forts challenge albeit not officially.
I do think of it as a great achievement, although in my mind, I am thinking that others will be thinking I just took a walk across the downs.

This is a tough course and I admire all that took part in this especially the runners.

I am definitely going to enter officially next year but I shall train before hand as-well as make sure that I’m am well fueled.

I now have a base time to beat.
I know the areas of my body that need some attention to avoid pain and injury.

I know where I can and cant run and I don’t think I will be looking to change that, I have suffered to much in those areas in the past… But I will be trying to improve on the places I know my body works better.

I have taken note of a few other events coming up this year and will try to compete in at least 4 this year.

My N=1

Ketosis is possible for the half marathon,  no probs…but supplements could make a big difference to pace and recovery.
I actually think, knowing what I know, that staying in ketosis or just outside of it, would probably be better for me than carbing up.
I have become a fat burner now and the thought of the fast decline in energy when eating the carbs, does slightly put me off.

Music at the correct beats per minute really helped.
When I had the music going, it was as though the ground was my drum and my feet where the sicks.
It acted as a great pace setter. So choosing the right tracks is a great little hack.

Joints: Next time I’m at the gym, I will ask the trainers how I can improve and build better support around the joints that suffered the most pain or discomfort.
I will also up my intake of good fish oils.

Mindset: I need to run my own race and not be so competitive…There really is no point at this stage.

Thanks for reading.

If your interested in the Three forts challenge. Go here.

Here for route description and maps

More Sussex races

How to make Bulletproof coffee

Competing whilst in ketosis

 

 

 

 

 

A Bucket List To Die For

the bucket list

Things to do before you die…

There are a few people that I have spoke to, that have said that they really don’t have any goals or things they would like to achieve before their time is up.

Personally I find that a little sad!

I am pretty sure if those people stopped and looked outside of their own little depressed world, they would find plenty.

I was recently browsing through my never ending list of favorite blogs when I cam across a “bucket list to die for”.

I mean this list is pretty epic, far out there and amazingly well put together.
The first thing I thought was “shit, I need to do one of those”.
The second thing I thought was, “I need to share the idea”.

So why create a bucket list?
We are all grown up, surely we know what we want to do with our lives.

Accountability

Nerd fitness bucket listHaving plans or goals and Not sharing them, makes it easy for us all to have ideas and then let them fall by the wayside.

 
No-one can question our actions or label us as failures and we don’t have to go through life dodging those that know about our goals.

Then there’s the remarks or negative feedback from those that don’t see life the way you do…We all know a few people that live life in the half empty glass, and they can be the worst ones to share your ideas with, you know the ones I mean.

We all have friends like that, good friends that always say they will but never do.

But make that list public, and your accountable for your actions, even if they are a little silly.
A really well thought out bucket list could really say a lot about who you really are, what you where like as a kid and your hidden personality.

Lets face it there are always things we wanted to do before we grew up, before we had responsibilities  and before our bodies grow to old and tiresome.

A bucket list to die for.

Bucket list nerd fitnessI cant tell you how to create your bucket list and where to share it, or even if you should share it.

At this particular point, I haven’t even created mine the way I want to. (but come tomorrow)

But I am going to share someone elses bucket list with you, in the hope that it inspires you, as much as it did me.

Remember this is a personal thing and the list I am going to share has been created, not only with the creator in mind, but also his community.

It was a great idea to really think this out and put not only his personality in to it, but also the personalities of his followers .

By creating a list that people can associate with, will surely lead to more understanding and support.
Friends and families will become interested in your goings on and even become supporters of your efforts.

When good people become part of your life, your life becomes clearer and rather than thinking about the up-hill battles to get even the simplest things done, the road becomes a little more even.

By sharing and letting people into your world, will allow you to find people with similar interest, which can be a great comfort, spread cost and motivate you to fulfill those goals.

Create your list and print it out, pin it up at work and at home.
Though often we are affraid that our spouses will have something to say about it, you just have to do it.

Epic List

The list of Steve Kamb is an awesome list and in my mind, the template for all bucket list to come.
He has really gone to town on this list and even broken it up in sections, stages, completed and uncompleted.

He has inspired a ton of like minded people to follow in his foot steps and start living their lives to the best of their abilities.

Steve Kamb is the founder and owner of the brilliant site Nerd Fitness where he inspires other nerds that maybe spend to long in front of a screen, be-it at work or at home.

The site was originally aimed at nerds, desk jockeys and gamers, but has since gone on to have a following of over 100 000 people

Steve’s Words

I’m the rebel leader here at Nerd Fitness.  I help desk jockeys, nerds, and average Joes level up their lives.

Oh, and sometimes I travel around the world on my Epic Quest of Awesome.

Steve not only list some pretty serious goals but also really silly ones.
What I do like though is the way the bigger goals have been broken down into stages of the target goals.

nerd followersFor example he wants to achieve 100 000 followers on his site, but before that he states that one goal is to reach just 10 000 followers.

This is a great way to see that you are making progress and that your efforts are paying of.

Another thing I like about this list is the use of themes through-out the list, as it keeps it exciting and hopefully interesting to others.

I didn’t want to share the link to Steve’s list to soon in this post, because I knew that once you click that link you wont come back.

So go check it out and get creative with your own. Steves Epic Quest – Nerd Fitness

 

 

 

 

 

 

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