Before we get really rolling here in blog land I wanted to take a moment to share about something I have been doing in terms of health. Yes the concept of healthy eating and technology don’t often go hand in hand. Our business simply is not often conducive to health, with pizza, chips, cookies, and all sorts of other goodies calling like sirens from the shores of all night coding sessions, bug fixing, server deployments and all the other wonderful things that go along with this chosen profession. Not surprisingly I turned into a chunky monkey because of this.
Like most things in life, it didn’t happen overnight and chip by chip, pizza slice by pizza slice, nacho by nacho I ballooned up to close to 270 pounds. Now people are fond of saying “oh I love vegetables and healthy eating, frankly if I heard nachos were going to be made with radio active waste I would still go for seconds. Ok, back to becoming fat. First off, consider this for a minute that even though I am 6′ 2” Andrew Bynum of the Los Angeles Lakers is 285 pounds but stands at 7ft. Starts to give you an idea of what I looked like. Now I am not posting my Elvis “Fat Period” photos. Metaphorically though, I had fallen and couldn’t get up. About two years ago I finally decided to get serious and do something about this before it did something about me. The statistics are staggering once you start reading them about how dangerous obesity is for you especially as you get older. Getting older has many perks, this one though is not one of them at all. Now the good news is I have been working out since I was 18 off and on (the key operational word being off and on) and had a lot of good personal trainers over the years, so even with that please do not think I am in any way a health guru, trainer etc., I say this because that is best left to the professionals to give advice. I will share a program and a book that I discovered which made a huge difference. The book in question was Sylvester Stallone’s “Sly Moves: My proven plan to lose weight, build strength, gain will power and live your dream.”
I could write reams of what I learned from this book and even though I had read other dieting and nutrition books this was the first one that really connected and sort of tied it all together. Basically Sly says, “hey food is good, and I like it as much as everyone else, and more important food like pizza is even better, now how do we have that and not be a beach ball on legs is the question.” Sly basically says everything in moderation and then one day a week to go crazy and yes lots and lots of gym, cardio etc. With this plan I lost 50 pounds and have kept it off for years. I did it by eating healthy six days or five days a week and then one day a week it was “whatever I @#$n well wanted and I would go wild.”
Even if I was on vacation and decided to cut loose every day I could easily go back to the plan of low carbohydrate, low fat yet delicious meals and hit the gym and rebound quickly. Now one of the best things about this book is Sly goes into all his history of working out, training for movies like Rocky, Rambo series etc., but the best part is how he got fat for “Copland.” Every time you buy a workout/nutrition book you have it in the back of your mind that “hey this person never had to struggle with anything in this area now can they give me any advice, I mean please,” but this is where Sly’s book is different.In his story about “Copland,” he describes porking up by about thirty or more pounds and then what it did to his health which lead him into such issues as sleep apnea, low energy, intestinal problems, and more importantly he noticed how it just plain felt to just carry around a lot of extra weight with people looking at him saying “hey he let himself go,” and “What happened to the John Rambo look?” It was a real eye opener. Sly also explores the idea that to be healthy doesn’t mean looking like Brad Pitt (more on this in a minute). It means being active and watching what you eat, basically better to have some extra pounds and be fit and working on something then just descending into oblivion. So my advice go buy the book, it is amazing. Lastly I will share my workout routine I am currently doing which apparently is the one Brad Pitt uses to get in shape for movies, I mean mention Brad and inevitably whether it be your wife, girlfriend or sister, women often get a case of the dreamy eye syndrome when contemplating Mr. Pitt. Still I use this workout from Fight Club and along with low carb, low fat recipes from Sly’s book continue on my quest to be healthy. Hey I would like to be around for a while you know. Take care everyone.
Brad Pitt’s Fight Club workout and example of a daily meal plan:
I can tell you if you follow this for even a month you will be surprised at the difference I mean downright shocked. The meals though are only a small example use Sly’s book since it has more variety.
Small plate of egg whites with chopped broccoli or spinach mixed in
Chopped cabbage salad or green salad with small turkey burger patty with light salsa on it
Protein Shake: Whey protein (chocolate flavor, don’t get the vanilla tastes like crap).
Protein Shake: (see above)
If energy levels start to fall too much during the week or on a day I will have a piece of whole grain toast to boost them. Water: lots and lots of it.
Carido: usually 45-50 mins on the treadmill, bike or eliptical five days a week when I am doing this routine.
Workout routine: (my weights on this are different, but the idea is to increase weight and lower reps as you go into each set.) All of the different types of exercises have examples on youtube.com The idea is to beat one muscle group up on one day and then let it rest. It really builds you up fast.
Monday – Chest3 – 75 Pushups
3 – Bench press 165,195,225 (25, 15, 8 reps)
3 – Nautilus press 80,100,130
3 – Incline press 80,100,130
3 – Pec deck machine 60,70,8040 minutes cardioTuesday – Back3 – 25 pullups
3 – Seated rows 75,80,85
3 – Lat pulldowns 135,150,165
3 – T bar rows 80,95,11040 minutes cardio
Wednesday – Shoulders
3 – Arnold press 55,55,55
3 – Laterals 30,30,30
3 – Front raises 25,25,2540 Minutes cardio
Thursday – Biceps & Triceps
3 – Preacher curl machine 60,80,95
3 – EZ curls cable 50,65,80
3 – Hammer curls 30,45,55
3 – Push downs 70,85,10040 Minutes cardio
Friday: Cardio 60 minutesSaturday: Cardio 60 minutes
“Sly Stallone, immortalized forever in stained glass at St John’s Episcopal Church in New Hartford CT.”
Now if you will excuse me I have some egg whites to eat…..Oh before I forget if you made it this far through the article I have a little gem for you. The next time you happen to be in the Northwest part of Connecticut particularly in a town called New Hartford don’t forget to drop by St Johns Episcopal Church and see Sly Stallone in all his glory forever saved as a saint in a stained glass window. Since my stepfather is semi retired from his long standing profession as a stained glass artist I think it is safe to say this now. When I was a teenage I was watching the third Rambo movie when my stepfather was working on a new window and he knew I always loved the Rambo movies when I was younger so he decided as an inside joke to take Sly’s face and add it to a window. When you walk in the door it is on the right side. I won’t tell you which one, but you can’t miss it when you look for it. /wink. Ciao everyone.