Monday, January 24, 2011

The pacer test...

When we were in grade school every year we would have this fitness test that tested our conditioning. We always dreaded that day. How wants to run and get sweaty? What was the purpose anyway, it’s a dumb little test, right?

Well this week the Weight Loss Challengers went back to junior high school and relieved those days in gym class but now they are a little older and a few pounds heavier. The purpose of this test for them was to give themselves a base line on where they are right now in reference to their conditioning. I have preached over and over again that it isn’t about the weight but if you plan out goals and get your mind off the weight you will become much more successful for the long term.
The pacer test is a 60 yard course that, as you go thru it gets increasingly faster. When the beep goes off you are to run to the other side and then wait for the next beep. You keep going until you can no longer keep up with the beeps. If you do not make it to the other side before the next beep you are done. This test is a grueling test that demands good cardio if you want to really do well. Now they all have a bench mark to start at.

This week I talk about the pitfalls they can encounter this weekend. With the Packers and the Jets playing and the parties they may be going to they may, no will, have a tendency to eat much more than they should. They will drink more than they should. They will consume things that ordinarily they would not consume and not really be aware of it until it is too late. When you are around your friends and having fun watching the games and socializing you are not necessarily thinking about your nutrition. Well we talked about that and I told them to be mindful of the fact that they just had a good week and try not to ruin it.

This week’s weigh-in was a new record at Parkers Place. Every challengers lost weight this week. This week’s big loser was Kati. After having an off week last week she came back strong this week with a 6 pound loss. In the lead still is John at 8% total weight loss (23 pounds after two weeks) but right behind him is Matt coming on strong at 6.12%. It is still early in the challenge and all the challengers are doing well, very well. Next week is another week and they need to stay focused and get it done. Good luck to all.

Thank you Mr. Dinini of Silver Lake Middle School for let us use your facility.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

What really is the problem...

I was watching a show the other day and there was a guest on the show who was talking about gastric bypass. He said that there was new and exciting news he wanted to share with the public. So that kind of peak my interest so I stayed tuned waiting for this news.

Well, here is this doctor on public television talking about Gastric Bypass surgery and the benefits of having it. Here was this doctor talking about the “success stories” he has encountered and how they have “changed” their lives. (Well the one argument you will not get from me is that their lives are changed forever, but success stories that’s another issue.). Here is this doctor throwing out all these medical terms to the public trying to show us that he was really intelligent and knew what he was talking about. Then at about half way thru the segment he hits us with the news. “THEY WILL NO LONGER JUST BE DOING THIS SURGERY FOR PEOPLE THAT ARE MORBIDLY OBESE BUT THEY WILL GO DOWN TO PEOPLE THAT HAVE A BMI OF 30 NOW”. As you can imagine if I could jump thru the television and land in the studio I would have. How lazy have we really become? How much more brain washing do we need to endure? Help me with this!

Ok, I will agree with something thing that he said. Any person who has this surgery will have a total life change. Now let me be more specific about the life change that will occur. You will never be able to have the freedom to enjoy food as you once could. You will have to eat in a different way. Now at first this doesn’t sound so bad but here is the kicker. What are you going to do when you gain a lot of that weight back? Now what? Don’t kid yourself you will.

Guys, let me be straight with you. The problem is not the food. For most people the problem is much deeper than that and just by losing the weight doesn’t make the problem go away. In most cases it is a mental issue that needs to be addressed and finally put to rest. Maybe it stems back to a childhood problem such as you getting laughed at for some reason. Or maybe your parents were always overweight and it has been common nature for you to be that way. Maybe it was that you were never accepted in any circles and because of that you are depressed. Then you began to gain weight and people began noticing you and you liked that. Whatever it is, it needs to be addressed and finally dealt with.

I don’t know if I shared this with you all before but when I was in high school many things happened to me and most of them were bad. In my senior year I had one goal and that was to be MVP of my track team. I worked hard that whole year. I ran when it was raining, snowing, hot or cold and night and day. That summer prior to my senior year, I joined a city track team just to get more experience with running. Well that year I went undefeated in the 100 meters all the way up to the State meet, the final meet of the season. I had won more events that year and broke more records that year than I had in previous years. Well the awards night came and I just knew that I was going to get it. No one had gone as far or gotten as much as I had that year. To my disbelief someone else got it. I was devastated and could not believe what I heard. To add insult to injury I was asked to give the coach his award for that year.

Here is where I am going with that. For years, well 26 years to be exact, everything I did revolved around me proving to him that I was worthy of that award. The sales jobs I took. The track meets I ran in. The house I bought. The position I held at my church. Everything I did I did with one thing in mind, I am important. I even ran for a public office and won.

Now for that 26 years that I was going thru this, I really had no idea that that was the reason why until one day when everything came to a head and I went thru a major crisis. I was at church and the pastor was talking about past things that may have happened in one life that have molded us to who we are today. He stated that for those who have done wrong to you, you must forgive them so that you can move on. He said that 9 times out of 10 they have forgotten about it and all you are doing is killing yourself constantly thinking about it. He said the best thing to do was to write a letter to that person forgiving them. However he then said not to mail the letter but throw it out never to be revisited again. Well you know me, I did write the letter, but I mailed it to him. Once I finished that letter and it was gone and he received it (I sent it certified) I felt worlds better. I felt that a weight had been lifted from me and I could not go one with life. I have had conversation with him since and we are friends now.

Guys, for those that have weight issues, don’t blame the food. God made it for us to eat. Something else is going on. Find it and deal with it. I tell my weight loss people that same thing. As you lose the weight things are going to come up. Issues are going to surface. Deal with them once and for all and then move on. Don’t try and bury them. It will only get you right back to where you are today.

My final word is this. This does not just happen with overweight people but those that are under weight too. On either end of the spectrum it is not healthy. Find someone that can help you help yourself. Ask yourself the question, why are you the way you are? Then once answered… fix it.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Be careful of where you get advice

“My friend tells me that because I am big boned that I can never get down to a size 6.” Mary said to me the other day.

“Oh yea, who is she?” I asked

“Oh she is a friend that I was talking to the other day about weight loss and fitness stuff.” She says to me looking very confused and depressed.

“Is she a doctor or a trainer?” I asked trying to figure out who this lady was and her credentials.

“No she works in day care and we are just friends. She tells me that she works out every day in the morning for about 2 hours at her house.” She says to me.

“Well what does this lady look like?” I asked trying to get more information about her.

“Well she is a little shorter than I and about my build. She says that I probably won’t get any thinner than I am right now and I am a size 14 now.”

“Oh really?” I said with the biggest smirks on my face. I was thinking to myself at this time that the blind is leading the blind. “Tell me more.” I said to her trying to hold back my opinion, which you know is quite difficult for me some times… Ok all the time.

“She thinks that you push me too hard and that I don’t need to be pushed so hard. Hey, do you think I can get down to a size 6?” Mary asks me as if looking for some sort of positive reinforcement.

“I don’t know. Can you get down to a size 6?” I asked her looking for some sort of a response.

She pauses for a brief moment and then says, “I just asked you that question. Do you think I can get down to a size 6? Everyone tells me that I can’t because of my size and bone structure. I just want to know if you agree with them or not.”

“So if I hear you right you are asking if I think you can get down to a size 6 from a size 14 as you are now. Am I right?”

“Yes I am. What are your thoughts?” She asks me.

“What does it matter what I think. Do you think you can do it?” I told her looking at her in her eyes.

“I don’t know I am so confused. I don’t know what to believe anymore.” Mary says to me with tears beginning to swell up in her eyes.

“Ok let me put things into perspective for you here. Here is a lady who is about your height and about you size who works out 2 hours a day, everyday…” then I stopped and said, “will you be seeing this lady tomorrow and if so at what time?”

“I should be seeing her at around 8am. Why do you ask?” Mary asks me with a very confused look on her face

“I want to invite her to Parkers Place for a general work out. Just us the three of us spending a little quality time together.” Yea there was a reason why I was doing this… read on.

That next day they both come bounding into Parkers Place and I was introduced to her friend. Well Mary was right just about the same height and build. “So I hear you work out 2 hours a day. That’s excellent! I think you could be a great inspiration for your friend and this is why I wanted you here to work out with her and to get an idea of her routine.” OK so I told a half truth. But I was serious about the inspiration part though.

“Thanks. Yea I work out just about two hours a day. Mostly on cardio stuff such as treadmills and bikes. I don’t do much with free weights though.” She says to me.

Well to make a long story short after she told me that I decided to give them a cardio based work out emphasizing cardio conditioning. It consisted of lots of running and lots of jumping jacks, squats and push-ups as well as crunches. As we started this work out, it became increasingly obvious that someone was lying to someone. After the first 10 minutes her friend was spent. After 20 minutes she was sweating profusely. At 30 minutes she made a b-line to the women’s room holding her stomach and mouth. Mary was shocked and amazed at the fact that this friend of hers was so out of shape.

“Hey, I think you should check on your friend and see if she is OK. She has been in the bathroom for 10 minutes now.” I said to her and yes I was concerned.

Well a few minutes later Mary comes out with her. “She is ok, she threw up.” Mary says.

“I think you should go take her home now. We will call it a day.” I said to Mary.

“Kevin, I’m just getting warm, let’s finish up. How much longer is the work out?” Mary says to me.

“It is only about 10 to 15 minutes that all.” I looked at Mary in astonishment. I was surprised that she wanted to finish it but we went on and she completed the final series while her friend sat in a chair looking pretty tired. After she was done they left. “See ya tomorrow Kevin same time.” Mary yells to me as she is leaving. I waved and told Mary and her friend to have a great evening. I just knew I was never going to see her friend again.

The next day Mary comes in to work out. She walks right up to me, “Thank you for yesterday. I had no idea on how out of shape my friend was and how much more in condition I was compared to her. We had a long talk yesterday in the car when I was driving her home and she told me that she thought you were a terrific trainer. I did learn one thing though. I learned that I have to be very careful on what advise I take from my friends. After working out with her yesterday, can I tell you something that has to stay between us?” Mary comes closer to me.

“Yea what?” I asked

“There is no way she could be doing 2 hours a day. That workout you gave us yesterday was not even close to any of the other workouts you have given me in the past. That was a very easy work out. Thank you for the eye opener.” She then squeezes my right arm with her left hand. “Now to answer the question you asked me the other day. I now know that I can do anything I put my mind to doing. I can get down to a size 6. I can get in better condition. I just have to stop listening to my friends and get it done.” When I looked at her the focus she had was motivating even to me.

I guess now we will see what happens.