11.22.2008

How I'm Losing Weight

Everyone seems to be interested in weight loss these days! You see it in magazines, on TV, Oprah loves talking about it, and just about every nutrition supplement talks about its ability to help you shed a few pounds. It's also one of the toughest things to do for many people. I've been one of the many most of my adult life. At 33 years old, 5'6" and 165 lbs, my BMI had the Doctor telling me to keep an eye on things and put in some more time on the treadmill! This past year I've yo-yo'd a bit, but the basic concepts work. The reason for my yo-yo was that I simply returned to poor lifestyle and nutrition choices.

On January 1, 2008, I stepped on the scale at 166 lbs in my b-day suit. I apologize for the visual, I wasn't real impressed myself! I actually had been attempting to improve my diet for a few days prior. With the holidays behind me I started eating more fruits and veggies, cut out sodas, limited sugars, and generally went cold turkey on a bunch of bad habits. Unfortunately, all the instant change did was make me sick - as in blocked up like the Hoover Dam!

I called a friend of mine, Cindy Kayser. She is a Certified Colon Therapist and at the time running a Colon Hydrotherapy practice. I didn't know much about what she did, but I was pretty desperate. I had been feeling pain for a day or so and was supposed to get on a flight to LAX the next evening. I explained what I was dealing with and frankly didn't know how blocked up I was as I'd never been before. Without getting too graphic, she basically said that I was in for an experience over the next 24 hours and she didn't know if I would be OK for travel or not.

The next day was torture! I did some things to relieve my situation that were none too fun, but went from bad to worse. I did not make the flight, instead I spent the next three days in major detox! My body was going nuts! I didn't have the flu, but was dealing with severe headaches, stomach pains, and pretty much completely lethargic for the next couple of days. I realized later that the headaches were likely due to caffeine addiction. Cutting myself off felt like my head was going to explode!

After those few days, I started to feel better. I still wanted to focus on healthier eating and kicking some of those bad habits - plus I hoped to get my BMI down a bit, closer to 20 or less than the then current 30+. I talked to Cindy about what to do and she said the best thing would be to consume more fresh fruits and vegetables, avoid meats, and cut out anything fried, caffeinated, or processed. That was quite a switch. She also recommended fresh juicing, and something she called a flax seed tonic to start my day.

Over the course of January 2008 I transformed my diet. It wasn't "easy" but it wasn't too bad either. I was eating more often, enjoying most all of it - not everything, but most, and an unexpected benefit was that I was losing a great deal of weight. Through the month, I dropped from 166 lbs to 144 lbs - for a total of 22 lbs! I was amazed! Over the course of the past few years I had been a runner, lifted weights, tried lots of supplements and diet aids to stay in shape - with absolutely no benefit! By changing to a healthier diet, I was finally dropping fat. It was pretty great! And for 3 months I maintained at 145 lbs.

So what happened? I got lazy. I started turning to caffeine for energy boosts rather than keeping my diet in check. Now I'm not saying caffeine is the enemy, we just aren't supposed to be addicted to anything. As a result I gained a fair amount of the weight back. I wasn't feeling great, but didn't get desperate for change either.

In October, in a bout of clumsiness, I broke a bone in my foot. A Pseudo-Jones fracture. Nothing too major, but it basically immobilized me for the last seven weeks. I found myself lying on the couch or in bed with my foot on a pillow without much for activity beyond thumbing the remote! It was mind-numbing and the perfect recipe for even more weight, adding to my Dilly Bar figure.

Two weeks ago, I'd had enough. I'd just heard from the Doctor that I'd be in this immobile state for another couple weeks. I was feeling my mid-section in ways I didn't care for. I was sapped of energy and I didn't like it. I decided it was time for a return to healthy eating. I wrote up my weekly eating plan and emailed my wife asking for her support. I got rid of any of the sugary snacks I'd been holding onto and kicked back in gear.

In the past two weeks I've dropped about 8 lbs. Again I'm eating good, I'm feeling better, and I'm enjoying the start of weight loss. So here's the menu and a few recipes. Will it work for you? I don't know, but I do know it does for me. I have to keep with it of course, but it works! (If I could find a Snickers and Mountain Dew diet that worked, I'd go for it, but so far that just keeps me in Dilly Bar form!)

Eating Plan:


Breakfast - Flax Tonic (recipe below), piece of fruit, fresh juiced veggies (favorite recipe below) or Axiom Fruits & Greens, instant oatmeal, water; sometimes Axiom Protein & Control (more about Axiom at www.AxiomRewards.com)

Snack - Trail Mix (recipe below), water - if I use an energy product, I choose a healthier energy like Axiom Launch or Control at this time

Lunch - Spinach Salad (recipe below), water

Snack - Fresh Veggies or 1 - 2 hard boiled eggs, water

Dinner - Simple cooked chicken (lightly seasoned) or wild caught salmon, brown rice, asparagus, broccoli or green beans, water

Snack - piece of fresh fruit (maybe with a little natural peanut butter), handful of trail mix, water

Before bed - 2 - 4 Oxy-powder (see www.AxiomRewards.com again), water

That's pretty much it. Seems pretty boring, but it's effective. I stay full, I have good energy, and I'm losing weight. I haven't added any exercise (I didn't in January either). And it's working. I'm about 157 lbs right now.

On to the recipes:

Flax Tonic:
  • 2 tsp fresh ground flax seed - I prefer the richer taste of Trader Joe's brand
  • 8 oz hot water
  • 1/4 Fresh lemon

Mix the flax seed and water, squeeze in the lemon, stir together and enjoy. As you drink the tonic, try to chew it as you swallow, don't "slam" it, "gulp" it. The flax seed is a great source of Omegas, the lemon helps to balance your digestion. This tonic wakes up your digestion first thing in the morning. Even the warm water is good for your digestive function.

My favorite fresh veggie juice recipe - of course you need a good juicer. I use the Breville Juice Fountain Plus. It works great for me and cleanup's pretty easy too. On to the recipe...

Green Lemonade:
  • 4 - 5 stalks of fresh Kale
  • 2 heads of Romain lettuce - I haven't really figured out what "2 heads" really is, I've tried Romain Hearts and Romain Leaves and guessed on the amount a bit
  • 2 whole Apples - the "sweetness" of your recipe comes from the apples so pick a type that you like to eat
  • 1 peeled Lemon
  • Ginger root - This is also to taste, but I use about 1" of the root

Wash everything and put it through your juicer. It mixes up bright green and you might need to make a batch or two to get the taste to your liking, but I think it's great. Full of good energy and salves hunger cravings too.

Spinach Salad:
  • Spinach or Baby Spinach leaves - base amount on how big or small you want your salad, for me it's about 1 quart container full
  • Fresh peppers - I mix Red, Orange and Yellow peppers diced together, again however much you want
  • 2 Tbsp Cooked Brown Rice, Chilled - This adds a ton to the salad, helping me feel full and stick with it
  • 1 - 2 pinches of Coarse Celtic Sea Salt
  • 1 Tbsp Craisins
  • 1 Tbsp Nuts - I like slivered almonds or crushed walnuts, sunflower seeds are pretty good too
  • 1 - 2 oz Olive or Flax Seed Oil
  • 1 - 2 oz Light Raspberry Vinaigrette dressing - or whatever you prefer, lighter the better

Mix everything together and enjoy. I usually mix the salad up in a plastic Tupperware-type container in the morning and take it to work. I dump everything in, close the lid and shake it up to mix the dressing and oil evenly. Shake, eat, enjoy!

Trail Mix:
This one is really a "Choose Your Own Adventure" (do they still have those books? I loved them as a kid!) but I'll attempt to tell you what I enjoy.

  • I pick up a handful of different trail mixes. Look for ones that do not have chocolate or candies in them. Just dried fruits and nuts. Pick stuff you like. Get one or two or three types, along with a bag of walnut halves, some raw almonds, a box of dried "Goldens & Cherries" and whatever you want to add. Craisins are good too! Mix everything together in a gallon bag, then portion out a couple of handfuls a day into smaller snack bags for each day. Great energy to get through your day!

In the spirit of full-disclosure, I'll explain the Axiom references...

Axiom Life Solutions is a company that I helped create in 2008. We opened our doors October 1 in Rogers, MN. Cindy Kayser, who I mentioned above is the President of the company and primarily focused on sales. I am the CEO and oversee all of the administration and operations. We have 6 core products right now, Axiom Fruits, Greens, Protein, Control, Launch & Oxy-powder. Our core practices of great nutrition are Cleanse, Restore, Build, Strengthen, Control & Boost. I truly believe the message I've shared here and Axiom is built on this foundation.

I believe that people need to get back to basics in their health. Our society is plagued with disease, obesity, addictions...people living far below where they could if they would make some simple changes. We started Axiom with a simple message, "Start Living Healthier!" Our goal is to share nutrition solutions with any we meet. We don't have cures, magic pills, weight loss miracles, or snake oil, just real solutions with real results.

If you're interested in Axiom, spend some time at www.AxiomRewards.com. You'll find that our nutritional products are natural, simple, results oriented solutions. We have heard from many who deal with a variety of health issues, that these are the best products they've ever come accross. We agree and it's the reason we took the step to start this company. We want these products to be available, and we want to spread the message of great nutrition.

Enough with the commercial, whether you use Axiom or not doesn't really matter. I hope that you're living healthy. If you find value in our products, great! If you benefit from trying my eating plan, even better!

I'd love to hear from you. What do you think? How do you keep living healthy?