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Posts tagged ‘20/20 Lifestyles’

January 14th: Yesterday Shirt, Today Pants

I forgot to bring a dress shirt with me to the gym yesterday so I was in my home gear at work all day. Well, this morning, after my workout, I realized I forgot to bring pants. Pants. Who forgets to pack their pants when they are going to the gym? Thankfully, the Pro Club shop has jeans (Mavi brand, one of my favorite). I ended buying a pair. The upside to all of this was that I bought size 36 jeans, rather than size 38.

Today, I had my workout with Christina: 42 minutes cardio (30 minutes on elliptical, 12 minutes on stairs, 547 calories burned, average heart rate 137, max heart rate 155) followed by stretches.

Yesterday was tough. After finding out that I only lost 4 pounds this past week, I was discouraged and disheartened. I know, I know: 4 pounds is a lot to loose and I am on the right track. It is just that I felt different. The pants I wore to my first weigh in were no longer fitting (they were lose) by the second weigh in… Anyway, I think if I go #2 any one of these days, I may shed a pound or two. Still no movement on that front by the way.

So anyway, I was discouraged, rational or not. When Rich came home late last night (we have both been working late lately), he showed up with a bouquet of red roses to tell me how proud he is of me. (This is where you go “aaaawww, so cute” and yes it was) That made my day/night. I am no longer discouraged and disheartened. Even if I only lost 4 lbs, I felt every bit of that 4 lbs leaving my body and it felt damn good.

January 13th: Weekly Weigh in – (week 2) down 4 lbs (to 250.0)

I am full of crap. Really. I haven’t had a proper bowel movement since last weekend (just lots of gas and bloating). It sounds like the reason may be the 20/20 bars. So we are discontinuing that this next week.

I guess the big news or not so big news is that I lost 4 pounds this week. Somehow I expected a larger drop but 10-lb loss in the first week was a hard act to follow. I think I lost more weight actually. I feel different (that was not the case last week). I am about to go down a pant size and I think I can see the difference in my body and face. I am literally full of crap, I think.

This next week we add non-fat cheese and non-fat yogurt. I don’t care about the cheese part (I am partial to full fat cheeses) but the yogurt part – I am going to enjoy it. More on what week 3 food looks like later.

4 pounds is 4 pounds. That is 1.57% of my body weight. I will take it. You can see the trend of my weight loss on the Scorecard.

January 13th: Getting Sick?

I woke up feeling under the weather… Worse than how I felt on Tuesday. Clearly I am fighting something- something probably Rich gave me. He’s been sick since we got back from Idaho. He claims sick babies over Christmas made him sick. He has been sick for a long time and it finally hit his ears. Ergo, reader, babies make me sick.

I digress.

I slept in until about 6 AM and then forced myself out of bed and into the gym. I could only muster 30 minutes on treadmill (Average heart rate: 133, max heart rate: 152, Total calories: 244). I forgot to bring a dress shirt so I am going around the office wearing what I usually wear at home putzing around. Oh well. In meetings all day, feeling sick and looking out of place. Should be a fun day.

Beach Cafe in Kirkland: Not Appropriate for 20/20 Dining

I went out to dinner to Beach Cafe with my sales team who are in town for a mini kick off before the big one in the coming weeks. Given how positive the going out experience was last weekend, I had an optimistic attitude… I can find something for sure. Well, not so fast.

Beach Cafe has been around forever and they have made a great business out of mediocrity, by wonder of a favorable location. All the mediocre food and pedestrian wines were on the menu but a single reasonable protein option for me. All I needed was 4 to 6 oz of unsalted protein. The menu was full of shit that is fried or drenched in something I can’t eat… There were no chicken breast uncovered with sauce, no turkey burger unsoaked with cheese, not even portabello mushroom unsalted and undrenched in butter… So I ordered a mountain of mixed spring greens and a side order of mustard vinaigrette. The server felt bad about the mushroom situation so she brought some mushrooms sauted in a bit of olive oil but not salted… My entire dinner had less than 200 calories. I am going to be in so much trouble when I go in for my dietitian appointment tomorrow!

January 12th: Going Strong

Yesterday (Tuesday, 1/11) was a blah day. I worked out with Christina at 6 AM. We did total of 56 minutes of cardio, burned 615 calories, with average heart rate of 127, and a maximum heart rate of 152. Damn my heart, it is already getting used to working out. I followed the work out with a 20/20 video, Sleep Part 2.

I had woken up feeling sick and unrested (someone else in the bed was coughing all night) so I took the day off as a sick day to make sure I do not get sick (I can’t afford it since I have some important meeting Wednesday through Friday). It worked. I am fine today.

After I got home yesterday, I had a chance to work out and do some long overdue tasks at home and then spent the evening relaxing and reading. Here is how the day’s stats looked:

  • Total calorie intake: 1548 (162 gr Protein, 137 gr Carbs, 42 gr Fat)
  • Total number of steps: 7,166 (equivalent of a 3.17 walk)

Today I woke up somewhat rested. Despite my personal trainer’s recommendation to not work out today (to rest my back), I went for a swim. Just for 40 minutes. Nothing major. I am not sure how many calories that is. I found an online calculator that claimed – based on my weight, duration and the type of swimming – I burned 648 calories. That does not sound right. It is too much.

Overall, I am doing well. My hunger is under control, my mood is positive and my food intake is plenty-felling even if it may not be plenty. At lunch or dinner, I am unable to eat everything I am told to eat, but I make a point of eating it, even if it is not right at lunch or dinner time. I am just dividing food intake to 5-6 meals a day, which is working out well.

One major problem though: Bowel movements. There is very little of it. I know that a protein-heavy diet tends to impinge on normal bowel movement patterns (hello Atkins dieters and your rather dense bunny/goat poops!!!) but this is not that kind of diet where you eat bacon and cheese all day. We have 6 servings of veggies (I eat mostly high fiber ones), 3 cups of berries, plus fiber supplement in the mornings. I feel all the fringe benefits of veggies (gurgling in stomach and bowel, gas) but none of the real “benefits.” I inquired about this to my dietitian and have not heard back yet.

January 10th: “Sounds like someone has a case of the Mondays”

I am grouchier than usual today.

I had my 6 AM appointment with Christina, my personal trainer. She was late again. Not sure what the protocol here is. This is second day she was late.

At least, I had a decent workout today: 10 minutes on stationary bike (mildly difficult), 35 minutes on elliptical (mildly difficult, 504 calories, 134 average heart rate), 10 minutes of stretches to strengthen my back/core (planks -straight, side, etc.) followed by a 12-minute 20/20 video on Sleep while riding the stationary bike (moderate intensity, 110 calories, 117 average heart rate).

I forgot to bring in berries for my shakes so I got a shake from the cafe at Pro Club. They forgot to put the peanut butter in it. Really, people? I wonder how hard is it to miss an ingredient when the ingredient list is on a monitor in front of you? There are 4 ingredients (shake mix, berries, peanut butter and fiber). I mean, really? Really? (I am channeling Amy Poehler and Seth Myers here)

By 10 AM, I was ravenous. Per my dietitian Meegan’s suggestion, I decided to “respect my hunger” and tried the 20/20 muffin I had purchased earlier in the day. I had half of a muffin (the muffin is made with the High Protein Shake powder and has 180 calories, 0.5 grams of fat, 22 grams of protein and 22 grams of carbs). It was….

Is it an alien life form? A sponge? No, it's a 20/20 Muffin

the most atrocious thing I’ve ever eaten (and I’ve eaten some pretty sick shit). It is technically a chocolate blueberry muffin but I don’t know what Meegan was thinking recommending that crap. It is a replacement for the shake so I suppose when people get sick of the shake, they want something different… Maybe this is a way for the 20/20 folks teaching a lesson to whiners. “Oh you don’t like the shake, how about this shit muffin? Eat that instead.” No thanks, I am sticking to my shakes.

I feel perpetually hungry today. It must be the workout. I find myself hungrier during the week. I just had lunch but I am still hungry. I will probably see if I can walk it off.

Week 2 (January 6-13) Food Program

As I reported a few days ago, this week my dietitian introduced non-starchy veggies into the diet. Everything from week 1 stayed in place (the shakes, berries, etc.) We added 3 serving of vegetables to lunch and dinner. 1/2 cup of cooked or raw veggies is one serving, unless the veggie is a leafy one, which makes the serving size one and a half cup. See the details on the image to the right.

This week, the lunch shake became optional. I’ve been using it to address cravings and mid-afternoon hunger. Adding a variety of berries keeps the shakes somewhat interesting but I am running out of options. Marionberry blends have been fun but even they are wearing their welcome.

Anyway, back to veggies. The non-starchy vegetables that are NOT currently included in the vegetable program are corn, peas, potatoes, yams, sweet potatoes and winter squash. No juices either. As you can see in the image below called Vegetable List, the program recommends including snow peas, snap peas, broccoli, zucchini, carrots and bean sprouts in each meal due to their high fiber content.

Vegetables List

There are some awesome recipes that came with this week’s meal plan. However, a lot of my vegetarian dish and non-vegetarian soup recipes will work with the program, so long they do not have grains or legumes.

January 8th: First Saturday on Program… including first dining out experience

Yesterday was a good day. I started the day at 6:30AM (sleeping in… crazy, I know) and did the house finances for about an hour. Exciting start to the day, huh? Then we took Beyaz for a walk which already put me half way through my weekend total steps goal of 10,000 (during the week, the goal is 5,000). After the nice walk, I had my morning shake around 9:00 AM. I probably should have had it prior to the walk, since I was getting too hungry by then.

Later in the morning, we spent time with Bryan Maletis of Fat Cork. Fat Cork is a husband and wife effort that imports, promotes and sells grower (people who actually grow the grapes and also make the) champagne in limited quantities. The session was fun and informative. Bryan and his wife so far work with 12 growers and carry about 3-4 different vintage/types per grower. It is admirable to see people making businesses out of their passion. I wish I was a bit more like that (Oh wait, I was and it blew on my face big time, right? Hello Speaklink!).

Lunch consisted of chicken and the eggplant curry I had made on Friday night. The Eggplant Curry is a very easy recipe. It is healthy and amazing tasting. (By the way, if you do this recipe, you do not need to brush the eggplants with oil prior to broiling. Neither do you need to use a second tablespoon of oil when popping the mustard seeds. I can never find fresh chiles either so you can probably do without those, if you don’t have them). I didn’t bother with the lunch shake since I was full.

In the afternoon I had a massage appointment, followed by a movie date with our friends Steve and Marla. We saw Black Swan and then went out for sushi… Went out to sushi yes. Went out.

We went to Nishino, one of the better Japanese restaurants in Seattle in my opinion. Located in Madison Park, it is convenient (for us) and consistent for as long as I have eaten there (5-6 years).

The menu was full of stuff I can’t have obviously but I found stuff I can eat: I ordered some green tea, sashimi (Hamachi, Toro, Maguro, Shake, Shiromaguro, Saba) as well as some mixed greens with olive oil and vinegar on the side. Awesome. I took my food scale with me so I weighed in all the food to make sure I can track it right on my food tracker (while I did get the occasional double take, no one said anything about me weighing the fish). I must say the food was most satisfying, despite lack of ample wasabi use. It was a busy night so the cut of the fish was strange and our friends Steve and Marla didn’t seem too impressed with the food. Maybe Saturday night is not the best time to go to Nishino.

I finished to day with a 20/20 bar to make sure I hit the 1,350-1,750 calorie range. Without the bar, I would have remained just under, around 1,313 but I don’t think that is smart. There is no way to maintain a weight loss based on excessive reduction of calorie intake.

New beginning… and A Lesson on What Not to Do

I started the day at 5 AM as usual (funny how in five days waking up at 5 AM becomes “as usual”). Christina was a few minutes late this morning so from 6AM to 6:10AM, I chatted with a girl sitting in the waiting area, who had a 20/20 water bottle. This was her 2nd time in the program. She did it a few years ago and 7 weeks into it, she got pregnant which forced her out (what do I always say about babies? They are very cute but they cramp your agenda, until their agenda becomes yours… They are small and cuddly but very devious and smart, I say). She started again last July and she is about to graduate. She told me she lost 35 lbs so far and that recently she hit a plateau. I didn’t think anything was strange until she started telling me how unrealistic it is to stick to the program and how she drank socially/occasionally and get this, how she put on weight over the holidays.

Uhm, drank occasionally? How does drinking occasionally in the middle of a $20K life change/weight loss program that clearly states no alcohol through the program help you change the way you eat/fundamentally alter your attitude towards food and bad habits? I don’t mean to say she shouldn’t ever drink but if this is a program, there is a reason why it is as long (or as short, depending individual circumstances) it is. And what’s with putting on weight? This program is designed to make you eat well (not the first week, but as I am finding out as early as second one). No wonder she hit a plateau.

She also mentioned that her husband did the program a few years ago, and funny thing is before she said anything else, I knew that he had to have gained all that weight back… Her patterns had to have come from somewhere. If the spouses, friends are NOT supportive, I don’t think one can succeed in this program. That “this little bite won’t make you gain weight” mentality is the pits, if you ask me.

By the way, I think losing 35 pounds is a great accomplishment. Just going by her looks, I think she could lose another 20-30. My gripe here is not that she lost less pounds than I think she should – of course not – but it is that she is not bothering to learn from this and change her ways. She is wasting the money… and yes, Microsoft insurance, per Premera plan, pays up to $6K of her treatment probably but still… It is her money I guess and she can spend however she wants. I wish she just did WeightWatchers. It is cheaper and you lose the weight and you keep it off until you stop following the food plan (which in this case is everyone except the disciplined 2%… I have a dear friend in California who did WeightWatchers and kept it off so I know it works well when the person means business).

January 6th: Weekly Weigh in – (week 1) down 10.2 lbs (to 254.4)

10.2 fucking pounds (4.59 kgs). That is what I lost since January 1st. Clearly, not sustainable weight loss but the detox is definitely working. Considering that I drank wine on Saturday and Sunday last week, the weight loss is almost improbable but I’ll take it. I don’t feel like I’ve lost 3.8% of my body weight but that is what the scale said…


My dietitian added vegetables to my diet. Vegetables! Yay! 3 servings for lunch and another 3 servings for dinner. Looking forward to it.

January 5th: Day 3 is …meh.

This is the first day of my workouts without Christina, my awesome personal trainer. I stuck to the good ole’ swimmin’ (Christina-approved of course). The heart rate monitor was supposed to work in the pool but it kept on slipping from my chest and not capturing the heart rate so about 5 lapses into it, I took it off. I must say I was disheartened by that. I was looking forward to all sorts of summaries (total workout time, average heart rate, max heart rate, etc.). Oh well. I will bring my chrono device tomorrow so I can at least capture how fast I am doing the lapses.

I woke up at 5AM again. I was in the pool by 5:45AM and out of it at 6:45AM. I thought I’d try eating after my workout to avoid excessive hunger so after I was done, I ordered a shake with the berries and peanut butter at the cafe. Well, it is 9:49AM now, and I am starving. Eating some before the workout and some afterward OR eating all of my breakfast after the workout didn’t make a difference in my opinion. I think eating at least some food prior to workout is a good thing, so I will stick to that going forward.

So yeah, I am hungry. I am coming to terms with it I think.

Oh, I had an appointment with a skin specialist today at the Northwest Skin Specialists (after the initial physical at 20/20 showed that I am in high risk category for skin cancer). It looks like I am OK and without skin cancer. The doctor (Dr. Grabowski) did say I am high risk because I have so many moles and that we should keep an eye on them on an annual basis unless I see some funny growth, like multi-color pigmentation OR pigmentation that has weird edges, instead of round, shapely ones. He burned off a skin tag, which smelled like charred meat… Awesome.

January 4th: Day 2 Wrap Up

Day 2 got off to a rough start but ended on a good note. Lunch came quickly, thanks to a bunch of meetings. Around 2PM, when my energy levels were plummetting, I took a 30-minute brisk walk outside. I had dinner at Shama’s (awesome mahi mahi steaks) and then watched a movie at home to unwind. I read several pages of a book that I am finding hard to get through and then I was ready for sleep by 9:45PM. I slept better than the night before so that is always good.

I am finding that the hunger headaches are tough. Quite frankly, no one set my expectation around them, which is disappointing. The program provides so much insights to various aspects of the whole iniative but no mention of the headaches as a major obstacle or how to manage them, workaround them, take your mind off of them. I don’t know… something. Maybe a good feedback item.

I have a secret and I must tell. I drank so much water yesterday, it made me wonder if there is such a thing as hyper-hydration. So I looked online for a little bit. Holy shit. It is rare but people die of water overdose. It is also known as water intoxication. Wikipedia is such an awesome source of shit I don’t really need to know.

Anyway, I was scared of hyper-hydrating and of course I wasn’t hyper-hydrating. I was just being a moron.

January 4th: Day 2 off to a rough Start

It is 9:14 AM. I am ravenous. I can’t concentrate at work. I have 2.5 hours to lunch.

I woke up at 5AM this morning and had my shake sans peanut butter and berries. I met Christina at 6AM as planned. 20 minutes or so on elliptical followed by 5 minutes on something that looked like an elliptical but was much harder, followed by another 5 minutes on rowing machine, followed by 15-20 minutes on treadmill (3.5 speed, 7.0 incline). Heart rate average: 142, Max heart rate: 162. 632 kcal burned. Then came time to be brainwashed: This is the time I spend on a stationary bike (70 RPMs) for approximately 15 minutes and watch videos about the program. Today’s video was about how I can help myself. The short answer: Writing down what I eat. It creates accountability like nothing else. OK, done.

After my workout, I had a tablespoon of peanut butter and a half cup of berries (a mix of marionberry, blackberry and raspberry). I am hungry. I have a headache. I am somewhat angry too. Damn the hunger.

January 3rd: Program Starts

Although I’ve started with the food portion of the program few days ago, it was not until today the actual program started, with official food tracking and my first personal trainer appointment. My personal trainer’s name is Christina. She was nice and gentle today. I have feeling that may change in the next few weeks.

I woke up at 5AM. Had a 20/20 shake, with fiber but without berries or peanut butter, so that I can still have something to eat afterwards. We started the workout at 6AM and went through 7:15AM. Today, as Christina said, is easy. She took some measurements and my blood pressure. Then we walked on a treadmill for 30-35 minutes, on an incline and speed of 3.3. Then I watched a video (all personal trainer session proceed with an informative or brainwashing video on the stationary bike). Today’s video was about “getting started.” It was essentially a reminder of why I am here, and what is necessary to succeed. Spread throughout the video were images of a fat guy eating crap and then eating right. Either way, lots of eating. I got hungry watching the fat bastard eat.

Lunch was a shake with berries plus 6 ounces of turkey breast. I had another shake with berries for afternoon snack. I had a tough time with it. It was a chocolate shake (not good) and I think I am already starting to get sick of the shakes. Oh well.

I have a headache now, probably related to hunger and caffeine withdrawal. We are having ahi tuna steaks for dinner. Sesame seed crusted ones. Should be pretty darn good.

January 1st: Dry Run with the Food – MISSION ACCOMPLISHED

The test run went well. Yes, i was a bit hungry here and there but all in all, I think I will do well with the shakes this first week. Per Jeff, the first week is the most difficult. I was able to fulfill the remaining water intake requirements (and the corresponding bathroom breaks).

The only issue I had today was not related to food but significant to how well I do overall in the weight loss process: My back. It was killing me all day. I probably overdid it yesterday. I will take it easy tomorrow and be ready for my first personal trainer workout Monday morning.