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Workin' out, eatin' right . . .


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Howdy, all! I wanted to share some of my new resolves, since having other people in on these things helps to make the process easier . . .


This last week, my wife and I decided to take the Body-for-Life Challenge. If you're not familiar with Body-for-Life, or the Challenge, visit Bodyforlife.com for tons of info.


In a nutshell, it's a nutrition and fitness plan that is designed to completely reshape your body in 12 weeks, or at least get you solidly on the road to doing so. But, even more than that, it focuses on changing your life and the way you think about yourself and the way that you live to help you be healthier, more positive, and happier.


Essentially, it builds off of basic principles used by bodybuilders for a long time, eat less food more often, focus on the proper nutrition levels, and do shorter, more intense work-outs. You eat six meals per day, about every three hours, which is optimum for kick-starting your metabolism to get your body to burn more fat and build muscle. You work out six days a week, alternating between upper body, lower body, and aerobic. On the seventh day, you get a day off, both from excercise and the diet plan. You can eat the sugars and fats you didn't chow down on during the week, which really helps you stick with the program.


Well, after one week (almost), I'll give you this report:


I'm sore. My quads are pretty tight and burning, and walking up and down the stairs to my bedroom is a chore. My wife laughs as I do it, since I look something like an arthritic old man as I do it. This will pass. It always does.


The beginning of the week was tough, food wise. I view it very similarly to when I quit smoking. I was a big muncher, and had quite the sweet tooth. I would eat junk food off and on all day long, in general. Even with six meals a day, I was still feeling hungry, and the cravings for chips, cookies, candy bars, and soda were almost unbearable. Like with smoking cessation, day three was the worst. Things are looking up, though, and I had a yummy breakfast this morning of a whole wheat english muffing with fat-free cream cheese and smoked salmon. Can't be too dissapointed with a diet that lets you eat things like that! You just have to be creative and thoughful about your food, and PLAN. One of the mantras of the Program is "If you fail to plan, your planning to fail." Kind of trite, I know, but it actually applies.


Anyway, I wanted to have as many of you as are interested in involved in this process with me, and I'd actually like to invite anyone who wants to to join me on the journey. I'll post weekly updates here, mainly for my own benefit, but hopefully I can inspire some other people to take some positive steps as well.


Wish me luck over the neck 11 weeks! Hopefully the motivation and energy this program provides me will lead me back into painting again . . .

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I can't say that I will be doing the Body-for-Life thing, but I have been training for a half-marathon. I know that I could finish one now, but I am aiming for a total of under two hours.


I am signed up for one before the big one, and as long as I have a final chip time under 2:15, I am going to be happy.


Anyway, good to hear that it's working well for you - and keep us all posted!

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Way to go. ::D: I know how hard it is to give some of these things up, also as a former smoker and former soda drinker. Yes, I gave up Mountain Dew (though my coffee is a different story :poke: .) It's amazing, even with something as simple as just giving up soda, how much better you can feel.

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How do you fit in the mid day meals with work? What food do you ise with that. I read the book a few years back, and used the cardio training method described in it. It is an excellent way to maxamize a cardio workout.


There are a couple of different options that work, actualy. I'm not working at the moment, so I can actually make myself healthy snacks and whatnot. I'm kind of a fan of tuna fish sandwiches right now. Easy, high in protein, and not too bad on the carbs if you use whol wheat bread.


The other thing that works nicely is the supplements that are marketed specifically for the program. I've bought a couple boxes of the BfL Nutrition Bars, which have a full nutritional element and taste pretty good. At about a $1 apiece, they're not THAT expensive, and you'd probably spend more than that on whole food anyway. They're good when you're busy at work, although my wife sometimes has trouble, since she's seeing clients all the time.


Way to go.  I know how hard it is to give some of these things up, also as a former smoker and former soda drinker. Yes, I gave up Mountain Dew (though my coffee is a different story  .) It's amazing, even with something as simple as just giving up soda, how much better you can feel.


Yeah. The soda thing is hard, as is the beer thing, especially on game nights. Fortunately, I get that cheat day to feed those cravings. I have been drinking coffee in the morning still, but I switched to sugar-free creamer, although I may do the fat-free instead, since I'm thinking it's the fat content that's more of an issue at this point that 1 or 2 grams of carbs.


I'm just happy I don't have to count calories on this one . . .

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Wow! You look great. You sort of remind me of Tom Sellick. ;)




Good to hear that your doing something positive like this. Here's a tip, something that I've discovered for myself and my family.


When you do get a chance to binge on the 7th day, stay away from foods that contain MSG. MSG is a real diet killer, it screws with the body so badly that it will add some really nasty hurdles to overcome if you're digesting it on your "day off".


MSG is hidden in foods under the names of


enzyme modified,

anything fermented,

anything protein fortified,

anything ultra pasteurized,

autolyzed yeast,

barley malt,



calcium caseinate,



natural flavoring,


hydrolyzed oat flour,

hydrolyzed vegetable,

hydrolyzed protein,

malt extract maltodextrin,

natural flavors,


plant protein extract,

potassium glutamate,

sodium caseinate,

soy protein,

soy sauce,


textured protein,

whey protein,

yeast extract,

yeast food.



The ones to watch out for are Hydrolyzed and Autolyzed Yeast extract and a majority of the time "natural flavorings" is used to mask the content of MSG. I've researched all the food that I eat around the house by questioning the manufacter's into telling me what was in the "natural flavorings" and the majority of the time they contained MSG. It's FDA legal for food to contain MSG under any of the above names, lobbied for by the Glutamate Society. <_<


If you stay away from foods containing MSG, you will get healthier sooner, and stay healthier longer. Hope it works out for you!

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(I am warlardgarou's wife - he showed me this post on MSG and I had to respond)


As a food scientist (BS and MS in food science), I would like to clarify a few things in the list. MSG stands for monosodium glutamate - a naturally occuring compound (protein salt to be more exact). As such, potassium glutamate would be a different salt form of glutamate and would not contain the sodium ion. Generally, if you have problems with MSG it is because of the sodium content - as you all probably know, table salt (sodium chloride) is not the only source of sodium in the diet. There is a very small percentage of the population that do have a real sensitivity to glutamate.


Calcium caseinate is a salt of an isolated milk protein and again would not have anything to do with MSG.


Whey protein is an isolated milk protein and not MSG.


Carageenan is a seaweed derivative and again not MSG.


Ultra-pasteurization is a heat treatment (generally used for milk or juice to make it shelf stable) and has absolutely nothing to do with MSG.


Not all natural flavors contain MSG, but MSG may be able to be labeled as a natural flavoring depending on its source. There are many things that fall under that description. All it means is that the flavor is extracted from a natural source and not chemically synthesized.


Basically, MSG is a naturally occuring compound that is contained in yeast, broths, and other basic food forms. Only if you are truely sensitive or need to reduce salt do you need to watch out for it.


I'll step off my soap box now.....


(He'll let me know if there are any comments/questions for me.)

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The above listing of food additives should read "may contain MSG". I apologize for not putting that disclaimer there, not 100% of the time, those are just ingredients that MSG is commonly "hidden" in by inclusion.


It's true that not everyone is sensitive to MSG, but it's a hindrance to someone on a diet, due to the common effects of ingesting MSG and that was my motivation for posting about it. Effects like increased hunger and/or cravings, weight gain, water retention, swelling, irritability, tiredness, and lack of motivation (within one hour to one day after eating foods filled with MSG) are not good for someone who is practicing a diet regimen. Water weight gain is usually lost after a day or two but the increase in weight due to increased eating in response to hunger and/or cravings stays. MSG appears to affect the hunger and weight control centers of the brain and while research is still being done to understand the mechanisms behind MSG-stimulated hunger and cravings, there is little doubt that people are sensitive to its effects - slowing weight-loss and increasing hunger and cravings. Again, not good for a dieter, regardless of the carcinogenic byproducts of hydrolyzation.



MSG is a bit more dangerous than plain old salt. Especially from a scientific standpoint;


In acid hydrolysis, crude gluten or other proteinaceous starting materials are generally hydrolyzed by heating with hydrochloric acid. The chemical hydrolysis with hydrochloric acid is said to be efficient, but almost any organic substance in the raw material is hydrolyzed, resulting in desired reactions such as hydrolysis of proteins, carbohydrates, fats (triglycerides), and the unwanted formation of mono and dichloro propanols, which are carcinogenic.


I dont' want to hijack Benham's thread and turn into a "MSG: Is it healthy or not?" debate, I just wanted to help someone who is dieting to avoid a common pitfall.

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Well, finished week 1 of the 12 week challenge on Saturday. Went pretty well. I actually kind of wne through junk food withdrawl, similar to quitting smoking, only worse for me. Kind a creepy actually. to think how much of a hold candy bars and potato chips have over us.


I haven't lost any weight yet, but my energy level is WAY up and I feel pretty good. I'm sure there will be more noticeable results as time goes along.

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