Sunday, April 27, 2008

I'm addicted

I want to work out morning, noon and night if time would allow me. I'm currently working out in the a.m. but if I can figure out how to get away for lunch during my busy schedule and get a good cardio routine in before going to bed, I think my fitness appetite would be satisfied. At least I hope. As Val mentioned in a previous post, we are running a mile nonstop, plus stadium steps. We are currently working on running a mile and half nonstop. Yes, it may sound like baby steps to some but this is a big accomplishment within itself. Eventually I want to go to the next level and get in 2 miles nonstop and eventually making it a 3 mile run every other day. It seems as if the more I put in the more I want to do. I almost feel like some type of lean mean running machine. Bottom line is I'm excited with how I feel and the results I'm seeing.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Halfway home

We are halfway through our training for the Fit For Life competition. It's clear all three of us here at The Times can see progress, as I'm sure the other contestants can.
Thanks to the wonderful folks at Schumpert, I just spent my first day kicking my own butt. For the remainder of the competition, on the days Supermann doesn't get me, I will spend my time at Schumpert's Wellness Center. It's a great place with everything you need.
Next week is a big week with Supermann. With my abdominal injury healing, the bench press has been the recent focus. I came within a sliver of 200 last week and was incredibly disappointing I didn't get it. Mind you, 200 isn't exactly powerlifting, but considering where I was a month ago, it's a nice round number to signify progress.
Tuesday is going to be the day 200 goes down. Then it's off to the next number. Supermann has some crazy idea of me doing 275 in the near future. Umm, doubt it.
This has definitely been a great experience so far. The commeraderie of Val and Nishia has been a huge help. And of course Supermann is the man!
We're coming down the stretch and making big progress. Hopefully we'll give the TV folks a run for their money. They had a HUGE head start, but hey, that is definitely to their credit.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

One Mile!

After about a month of working up to it, me and Nishia can now run a mile. Nonstop. If that's not amazing, I don't know what is. We've even thrown in the stairs (all 73 of them, on the home side) of Lee Hedges Stadium. Ah, progress.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

1/2 Mile

Nishia and I ran a 1/2 mile the other day without stopping. Once again, even though some of you could do that holding your breath, it was major progress for us. When we started this challenge, neither one of us could make it across the room without huffing and puffing. And we still have over a month to go...

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Fired up the grill

Despite today's weather, I decided to grill some meat and vegetables for Team Times. How much baked fish or chicken can one eat? To avoid becoming burned out on using the oven for meals, I suggested to Val and Roy that we get together for a cookout to add other alternatives to preparing our food. Salmon, chicken and turkey were the meats of choice and asparagus and corn were the vegetables to accompany the smoked meat. I also threw in some dirty rice (brown rice and ground turkey) as an added bonus. These efforts were made to help us with preparing our meals for the week. I have found coking my food in advance has helped me stay on track with the meal plan Supermann prepared for us to following while training. Bon app├ętit Val and Roy.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Getting fit ain't cheap!

Ok, so things are going pretty well on the fitness line. I'm improving in all the area I'm working on. However, I conned myself into believing this health kick would be cheaper than eating out all the time.
Good lord, eating healthy takes some dough AND a lot of time at the grocery store.
Of course, the expenses multiply greatly if you choose to take supplements, which I am. Dang it, I should just go visit Roger Clemens or Barry Bonds and get the good stuff. A little HGH should help down those TV folks!
So, spending about $150-200 on supplements per month isn't out of the question. I really have to relay on Supermann to help me pick and choose what I REALLY need. But for this two-month competition, I'm going all-out.
Fresh fruit, natural foods and "fat free" things are generally expensive. Throw in fresh fish and it gets pricy.
Of course, I also spent money on an exercise mat and push up bars, two blenders -- one for just the protein shakes and a fancy-shmancy one for veggies and stuff.
That being said. I have to thank Robert "Supermann" Blount for taking the time to train all of us for free! That's incredible.
The other menacing thing is going to the store ALL THE TIME. Dang, you can't just go buy 20 boxes of hot pockets, pasta and frozen pizza. This fresh thing make trips a weekly deal!
This has truly been a lifestyle change -- and not just regarding what goes in my shrinking stomach!
TV hacks, you're goin down!!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008


It is a few weeks into the challenge now, and the going is tough. I decided I needed some inspiration, something to really keep me moving. So I rented the movie Rocky. I'd seen it before, but that was years ago, and I could hardly even hum the theme in my head anymore. The time had come to see it again. It didn't give me the pick-me-up I thought it might, though I liked it well enough. It probably would've worked better if there were Philadelphia Museum of Art steps to run up around here so I could measure my fitness progress.

Monday, March 17, 2008

It's peanut butter and jelly time, peanut butter and jelly time!

I can eat!
Sunday my DETOX was officially over and the first thing I did when I got up was make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich! Of course, it was on wheat bread, but who's counting ... it wasn't cream of wheat or lettuce or freakin steamed veggies! Praise the Lord!
For lunch I had some seared catfish and for dinner a grilled chicken salad. I felt for sure I was going to gain weight. But I didn't. For the 12th straight day, I didn't gain a thing. Nice.
Now I go to another eating plan. In addition to this eating plan, I am taking an assortment of supplements. All supplements have been approved by MLB, the PGA Tour and the Shreveport Amateur Golf Association.
Here it is:
1 Fit For Life Meal Replacement shake with 8 oz. glass of Soy Milk
1 bowl of oatmeal with honey
2 slice of whole wheat toast with sugar free jelly
3 eggs and 1 can of tuna in water
1- 8oz. glass of water and coffee is o.k.

1 Piece of Fruit
Fruits: Apples, Pears, Oranges, Peaches, Plums, Grapes
Jell-O or Applesauce

Lettuce & Tomato Salad with Low-Cal Dressing
Cooked Green Vegetable (Green Bean, Broccoil, Cabbage, ect...)
1 piece of 6oz. Chicken Breast or baked Fish, Tuna, Salmon, Trout
1/2 cup of brown rice
Ice Tea & Lemon (Splenda or Equal Sweetener)

Snack: Same as above

6 oz. Chicken Breast or baked Fish, Turkey, Salmon, Tuna
1 cooked mixed Vegetable (Cauliflower, Broccoli, Carrots, and ET.)
1 Small Lettuce & Tomato Salad with Low- Cal Dressing
2 Bedtime Weight Loss
Fit For Life Meal Replacement Protein Shake
1 Small Lettuce & Tomato Salad with Low-Cal Dressing
1 Glass of Ice Tea or Water

Meats to be eaten are baked Chicken, Fish, Tuna and Turkey. No fried foods.

NO MEAL after 7:30 p.m., but can snack on Fruit (Cantaloupe, Grapefruit, Apples, Tangerines, Melons & Strawberries), Graham Crackers, Fig Bars and Almonds Nuts (Unsalted)

Seasonings: The chief symptoms of excess sodium intake are swelling and a decrease in urine output. Salt goes hand in hand with heart disease, high blood pressure and stroke. Reducing sodium intake helps to lower blood pressure and prevent water retention which translates into pounds on the scales.

I can use: Ms. Dash, Onion and Garlic Powder (not salt), Mr. Toney’s No Sodium Salt, Onions and Peppers.

My eating program is designed to burn fat, lose water weight and build muscle tightness. The combinations of some complex carbohydrates, simple carbs, protein, fructose sugar and the consistency of eating are supposed to do just that.

I'm ready to go!
Coming tomorrow: The cost of being healthy!!! It aint cheap to get fit!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

First setback

First let me say that I'm not even testing myself in terms of weights or push-ups or sit-ups yet. What I'm doing is embarrassingly miniscule. However, after my sit-ups and on my FINAL push-up of the day, I strained a muscle in my abdomen. Who the heck knew push-ups worked your abs.
Supermann has ordered me off the stomach work for at least a few days to see how bad the problem is.
On a good note, I'm nearly the end of Day 5 of the 7-day Detox and things are going very well there. There's been significant weight loss. Now I just have to get my strength back. I mean, seriously, this sucks.
It's been 4 years since I did much of anything, but dang.
Oh well. This is the part of the competition that will test your mettle I'm sure. I'm ready to get off the Detox and eat some real food. Not that I can dive into pizza and Canes, but at this point fish, even grilled, seems like heaven.

I can (almost) do a pushup

Today me and Nishia came close to doing honest-to-goodness, no cheating regular push-ups. Not the girly kind where we use our knees, but the real deal. Laugh if you must, but this is an accomplishment for us, seeing as how last week we both fell flat on our faces when we tried. We've come a long way, and I'm beginning to see just how long two months really is. We'll get where we need to be soon enough.

The New York Times has an interesting article about push-ups. It states, "The push-up is the ultimate barometer of fitness. It tests the whole body, engaging muscle groups in the arms, chest, abdomen, hips and legs. It requires the body to be taut like a plank with toes and palms on the floor. The act of lifting and lowering one’s entire weight is taxing even for the very fit."

So there you go.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

No pills for me

I tried to do the detox diet thing like Roy, but there is no way I can swallow 36 horse pills a day. One is hard enough for me, since I'm the world's worst pill-taker. But geez, that diet is supposed to last seven days - that's 252 pills in a week. Give me a break! I want to lose weight, but I'm going to do it the old-fashioned way by eating right and exercising. It may take me a little while longer to get to where I want to be, but oh well. I can't handle the pills. Incidentally, I'm still following the diet already outlined on here by Roy. It isn't easy, but I'm managing...

No pain, no gain

I’ve always been a proponent of journaling, but expressing myself electronically is something I have to get used to. Well, here goes . . .
How much pain must one endure to gain physical satisfaction? Yes, this is a rhetorical question. Being sore and hungry is a bad combination but I’m willing to work through it for the next nine weeks. Wait, nine weeks, what did I get myself into? Well it’s said it takes 21 days to form or break a habit, I guess working to stay fit is a habit I’m willing to keep. Now, the hungry part, that’s something I don’t want to get used to. For the most part I eat pretty healthy, but when certain comfort foods are restricted, I begin to lose sight of the big picture. I mean, no pizza, hamburgers, a good juicy steak, ice cream, OK I digress, but that’s a challenge within itself. I mean, how much fish (turkey and chicken), veggies and fruit can one eat to stay satisfied throughout the day. My biggest obstacles to overcome are working out consistently and maintaining good eating habits. I welcome this challenge because I will be able to meet some personal and physical goals, so I implore you to follow along with this journey as I make this lifetime commitment to stay fit. I will weigh in later as things progress.

P.S. If you have any healthy choice options I can incorporate into my eating plan please pass them along, because a sistah is hungry.

I'm 50% detoxed

It's Wednesday afternoon, exactly halfway through the "detox." It's sounds a lot worse than it's been. The only complaint: Hunger.
I do pretty well during the day's 5 "meals." It's only tough beginning at about 8 p.m. every night.
However ... the weight is disappearing ... and I haven't done a whole bunch of working out -- my body is still getting reaccllimated to the torture and is coming around.
So .. i can only imagine what the combination of healthy eating and an increased workload will do. I'm excited about the possibilities.
I said I'd post what the detox entailed, so here we go (as I dive into my "large" salad). With my times to adjust to my schedule.

The hey during the detox is the 12-pill lot I take three times a day. The pills contain 4200 mg of fiber along with a bunch or goodies -- i have no idea what their purpose is, but they work. I usually take the pills with about 16 ounces of distilled water.

BREAKFAST (9 a.m.): One bowl of Cream of Wheat (honey added for flavor) and 8 ounces of distilled water (it tastes no different). Can also substitute bowl of oatmeal here.

MID-MORNING SNACK (11 a.m.): Pear, banana or apple. More water.

LUNCH (1 p.m.): "Large" salad w/ tomatoes and 8 ounces distilled water. Can substitute 1 1/2 cups of steamed vegetables for the salad.

MID-AFTERNOON SNACK (3 p.m.): Pear, banana or apple. More water.

DINNER (6:30 p.m.): Regular salad w/ tomatoes and a single piece of wheat bread and 8 ounces of distilled water. Can substitute 1 cup of steamed vegetables for the salad.

And that's it. Considering I'm a night owl ... it's easy to see how I could get hungry at night.

It's only been one week since the weigh-in, but the results, for me, have been stunning.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Why can't I lose weight?

What have I gotten myself into? It has been almost a week since the weigh-in, and I'm sore in places I didn't even know existed. I've eaten healthy (with no cheating!) and I've worked out constantly. Weights, push-ups, sit-ups, bench presses, walking, jogging, bike riding... Everyday, multiple times a day. So I got on Supermann's scale today, and what did I find? I had gained a pound! Mind you, I weighed myself with my shoes on, so that probably had something to do with it. But it was still discouraging. So then I worked out for an hour - spent time on the treadmill, worked on my abs, did some bench presses, did the elliptical. Basically, sweat a whole bunch. Supermann made me get on the scale again, this time with my shoes off. And I weighed exactly the same as I had one hour before! I gained weight just by working out! Why me?

Monday, March 10, 2008

I'm freakin hungry!

I am blessed to have the opportunity to participate in this contest. Not only for the training by legend Supermann, but for the camaraderie of my fellow journalists -- newspaper and T.V.
I had to do this. It got to the point where looking in the mirror was downright embarrassing -- even more than usual. Sports have been a significant part of my life since I was able to walk. Playing various sports five and six days a week kept me healthy and happy.
That changed about 4 years ago. My knee popped out of socket in a freak deal and I haven't been the same since -- only because I chose not to be the same. I let the other subsequent injuries (likely caused by my departure from being fit) begin to serve as an excuse for not being an athlete anymore.
Hopefully, Wednesday, the mind-set changed again.
Playing sports, not just writing about them, is what makes me the happiest. I was never bound for Mr. Olympia, nor do I want to be, but I don’t want to continue to avoid athletics due to “injury.” AKA, I'm useless!
Of course, being single and out of shape is no picnic, either.
It’s going to be a long journey for The Times’ trio, but we’re determined to succeed -- no matter who wins the competition.
So after just five days there have been incredible results. I can't disclose the numbers -- I don't want the competition to get an idea of where we're at. Plus, I'm a bit superstitious.
Supermann put me on an immediate cardio/weight plan, but perhaps the most important portion of this two-month contest – although I’m doing this as a life change, not for 60 days – is the eating plan.
Sunday, I started a 7-day Detox plan. No, it’s not Master Cleanse, and apparently much less violent. Two days in, I feel terrific.
It's been just five days since the weigh- in, but my stomach would say it's a darn eternity. No more fried food … ahhh!!!! Raisin Canes was a ritual! No butter???? No white bread, ahh no biggie.
And that’s AFTER the 7-day Detox.
I will post my Detox plan. It sounds pretty darn intimidating. But like I said, so far, so good.
I hope you enjoy our journey to be Fit For Life!

Welcome to the challenge

Roy Lang III, Val Horvath and Nishia Livingston have agreed to compete against fellow media members in the Fit for Life Reporters Challenge.

The weigh-in was held Wednesday at Robert "Super-Mann" Blount's downtown gym. Blount is the founder of Fit for Life Day in Shreveport, and he trained with 8-time Mr. Olympia Lee Haney.

Other competitors are Chris Redford and Sherri Talley (KTBS 3) and Fred Childers and Katrina Webber (KSLA 12).

The participants have two months to prepare for the competition to be held the morning of Saturday, May 10, at Convention Hall.

The winner of this challenge gets a "pose down" with Lee Haney, 8-time Mr. Olympia Ronnie Coleman, 4-time Miss Olympia Iris Kyle and 2007 Mr. Olympia Runner-Up Victor Martinez.

The contest is men vs. men and women vs. women and included:
Fastest ½-mile run
Most push ups in a minute
Most sit ups in a minute
Tug of War
Most Bench Presses in a minute (55 pounds total for ladies, men bench their own weight)
Most loss of Body Fat and other Measurements
Points will be awarded in each category, with the man and woman with the most points being declared the winner.