Day 56

Today I got stuck at work doing some random things, and had to run out for a to-go bowl. I went with a small helping of chicken, carrots, celery, water chestnuts, and… steamed rice! Yes, I know… starch in the last week, what was I thinking? I was thinking I wanted some rice, that’s all. I added lots of soy sauce and it fulfilled a craving.

Dinner was a really interesting meal which probably wasn’t the world’s most diet-friendly… but it was good and I tried not to eat too much. I think it was called a Tamale Pie, and it was basically the innards of what would be in a chicken tamale over a base of cornbread. Enchilada sauce covered it, and it was pretty darn tasty.

So, needless to say, I got some more exercise in tonight and made sure to break a sweat so that I could help burn off some of that cornbread and rice :)

The Tortilla Factory

On Monday, I got an email letting me know that there was to be an auction of much of the food prep materials and decorations from The Tortilla Factory restaurant, which was a Herndon, VA cornerstone for over thirty years. I decided to drive over to the restaurant and see what was going to be available for auction.

I was fortunate to get there right at the end of the day, and spend a few minutes talking with Chuck, the owner of the restaurant. I asked him what his favorite bits of art were that remained, and what was interesting to him. I told him how I had great memories of coming to that restaurant with my mother, who passed away far too young as a result of lung cancer.

On the way out, my eye caught the sign which I’ve provided a photo of here. I asked him if the sign was being sold, he said it wasn’t. He proudly told me that the Tortilla Factory was one of the first fully smoke-free restaurants in Herndon. I told him I was keenly aware of that fact, since my mother had quit smoking and therefore preferred smoke-free establishments. Truly it was probably a decent reason why we visited as often as we did.

Then Chuck did something awesome. He tore the sign off the wall and handed it to me! I offered to pay him for it, but he wouldn’t hear of it. So, I’m now the proud owner of this sign, and it will remind me of my mom and this awesome restaurant which I’m sad to see go.

Back in time…

OK, so I blew it and didn’t give you all an update for Monday, Day 55 of the contest. It was a busy day! I went to lunch with Jason, got a table with Ashley as our server, and ate a good meal of chicken, carrots, peppers, celery, baby corn, broccoli, and some Mongo BBQ sauce. My standard starch-free meal with a Coke Zero of course. We spent the whole lunch talking about work stuff, and then went right back to the office to take action.

Later in the day, I took a trip… and I’ll post about that in the next post, because it deserves its own post.

In the evening, I got a nice 3 mile walk in on the treadmill. Overall it was a good day.

Another brief health update

My stomach is feeling significantly better this week. I communicated with the Dr. and it is very unlikely that the issue with my liver is causing me any pain. It is likely that my issues have just been exacerbated by the contest and the diet. Having less food to work on is making my body more sensitive to all digestion-related issues.

Weight continues to come off, albeit a little slowly. I am still shooting for making my goal weight of 170lbs by the weigh-in Monday morning, and hopefully I can make that happen. I feel that a 15% drop in body weight will be awesome. (Yes, I realize that there is at least one contestant on the leaderboard that claims to have already lost over 16% of their body weight in one month. I am not sure how that can be performed in a healthy and safe way. I was not willing to take risks and make this a dangerous contest for my body – I’m in this to improve myself for the long run, not just drop weight like a supermodel or movie star.)

Stay tuned – my last informal weigh-in will be Wednesday, and my final weigh in will be Monday April 2.

Day 54

90% of the way through the contest. Can you believe it?

Tonight I got a to-go bowl that was partially designed by Marie and Brian because they wanted to share it. I was feeling in a giving mood, and since their dinner was hot dogs and macaroni & cheese, I thought they deserved a little extra good food!

So, we had chicken, ham, eggs, carrots, celery, bean sprouts, and udon noodles. And lots of soy sauce. I bypassed the noodles.

They were so thrilled to be sharing with my bowl, although I wouldn’t normally do that I made an exception for the evening!

Thanks for your support

It’s kind of great when every post gets 10-20 votes without even asking. For those (around 20) of you that loyally upvote all my posts every day, please know that your support keeps me going through the tougher days of this contest!

It’s been very rewarding to be able to look in the mirror and see a significant difference in the way I look. My face looks thinner, my clothes don’t fit the same. It’s pretty cool.

I hope you same people that click my blog posts every day also help me keep this weight off! Deal?

Day 53

Today I got another to-go bowl so I could eat with my family. We spent most of the day cleaning up the house (and especially Marie’s room) in preparation for some company coming over for dinner. Marie’s room was a DISASTER! Right now it looks pretty good, here’s hoping it stays that way… We also moved Marie’s top bunk into Janie’s room to become her bed. I’m super hopeful that this will mean she will stay in her bed all night and we might get an entire night’s sleep. We’ll see.

Today’s bowl was chicken, “classic stir fry mix”, bean sprouts, and broccoli. It wasn’t my best effort ever, to be honest. I need to try out a few more of those recipe bowls before this is all over!

Day 52

The days of the contest are winding down, and to be honest, I’m kind of glad! I am looking forward to a few extra treats after my final weigh-in is complete!

Today’s bowl was chicken, broccoli, peppers, carrots, onions, and mushrooms, with some honey soy sauce. It was of the to-go variety, after I had a lunchtime meeting with an old friend.

I keep forgetting to take pictures of bowls, or really of anything exciting. Especially for to-go bowls. Maybe tomorrow I’ll take a video.

And now for something completely different

Laura and I have picked up our first ever reality show: The Voice… Well in this week’s episode our fellow Virginians, the Shields Brothers, were eliminated from the competition. I think they were robbed.

To thank their coach (Cee-Lo Green), they recorded the following little ditty, hope you enjoy!

Looking forward to catching them in concert next time they head up this way.