Losing weight with my iPhone

This weekend I finished my 50th workout session with my trainer.  I really enjoy working out and I have learned a lot during my time at No Mercy Fitness.  I have learned more about myself and my relationship with food and exercise.  I have lied to myself SO many times over the last 33 years of my life.  I have told myself that it doesn’t matter what I eat as long as I take the stairs instead of the elevator, as long as I go for a walk, as long as I do…….whatever…..

So I would end up eating most likely 3000-4000 calories a day…..take that and then I don’t do the stuff I say I am going to do when it comes to exercise — which has lead me to where I am right now.

But now I have someone keeping me accountable.  It has not always been easy and I am far from being perfect, but during the last 50 sessions I have lost close to 30 pounds and I feel more in control of what I am eating.  Instead of not knowing what my next meal is going to be, I have a plan  for my meals.  If I eat something that is not good for me that is a choice and I have to live with the consequences.

Right now those bad choices are becoming less and less.

Part of the training is the exercise-  I am moving my body on a consistant basis and I am feeling like I am getting stronger and stronger.  The other part of my success has come from nutrition.  I need to know what is going into my body and why I am putting in there.

No Mercy has some food journal pages that they give me to help keep track of the food, calories, fats, proteins, and carbs.  This a great resource for many people.  But I know this does not work for me.  I have never been able to keep a notebook like that.  There were many times that I did not have the book with me and I would not write down what I had for a meal that day and then I would forget and I would get to the end of the day and only record  800 calories — I knew that was not right…..

So I went from the papers to a notebook which was better, but again – if I did not have it with me I would not record something or I would not be able to find it the morning of my next workout.  So I racked my brain to figure out a solution.

So I did a search in the app store and I found many, many apps to use for recording food choices.  So I started using some of those apps on my iphone to record what I was eating.

I evaluated many apps but I have settled on two that have really helped me.

Continue Reading »

My 3 Words for 2012

After reading Chris Brogan’s post last year on three words replacing the traditional New Year’s Resolutions I was hooked.  I picked Acceleration, Mindfulness, and Learning as my three words.  I feel like they served me well throughout the year.

2012 3 words

This year I have three words which are going to take my life and my family to the next level.  Over the next three days I want to share them with you and more about what they are going to mean for me this year.  I totally agree with Chris when he says “Resolutions are often too vague, or too directed towards one goal. It might be “quit smoking” or “lose 20 pounds” or “get hired.” These are all fine aspirations, but I challenge you to dig deeper, to find three words that could be used as lighthouses to guide you through stormy seas, that can be used as flags on the battlefield of your challenges, words that will bolster you and give you a direction that goes beyond the goals you might attach as a result of these words.”  

So I have dug deep and I have prayed about and pondered what my three words will be for 2012.  I will also take some action steps to properly executing and keeping focus on my words.  I hope to have month-long goals but some might be longer and others shorter.

My 3 Words for 2012 are:

Continue Reading »

Bullying: Ancient Problem, Same-Old Solution

This is a guest post from Scott Hannon. Scott currently serves Hope Lutheran Church in Arcade, New York. He is a graduate of The Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary. This article was a part of Hope’s email devotions. It was published on September 26, 2011. If you want to guest post on this blog, check out the guidelines here.

Our denomination publishes a magazine every month called The Lutheran.  The cover story of the January 2011 issue was entitled, “Bullying the Pastor.”The Lutheran  When I saw the magazine sitting in its regular place among other reading material in our fellowship hall, I thought it would be funny to give the article a little more visibility.  Over the next several weeks I placed the magazine all over the church.  One week it would be on the welcoming table everyone passed on their way into church.  The next week it would be sitting right next to the coffee pot over 90% of our parishioners over the age of 10 frequented.  Every time I would put it somewhere new, it would make its way back to its regular home just to be moved by me all over again.  It was our joke.  I am not bullied and everyone at Hope knew that.  I played with the presence of the article because I thought it was funny.

Jamey Rodemeyer
Jamey Rodemeyer, age 14

Only bullying is not funny, and it certainly wasn’t a joke to Jamey Rodemeyer, the Williamsville North teen who took his life one week ago.  And it certainly isn’t funny to themillions of others who are bullied every day at their schools, work places, or even in their homes.

Bullying is one of the worst kinds of ways we live with one another, and yet for decades we’ve been too quick to dismiss it as “kids being kids” or as a joke.  It is the repeated hurtful acts of others meant to shame, belittle, and cut down.  The people it affects it attacks from every angle.  It manifests itself in physical acts of violence, dangerous rumors, name-calling, and threats.  For children it can be so bad that in 2006 ABC News reported that 160,000 kids skip school every day for fear of being bullied, but even at home they cannot escape the cyber-stalks and slander of their aggressors.

And it is affecting all of us.  Bullies in school are significantly more likely to commit series crimes as adults.  Those bullied are just as likely to become bullies themselves, if they don’t attack their bullies or take their own lives first.

But like so many of the sinful ways in which we live with one another although bullying is reaching new heights, it is certainly not a new problem. As long as people have lived with one another some of those people, often the weak and vulnerable, have been subject to the torments of others.  But for as long as it has been happening, God has spoken against it.  In fact, the Bible is full of reminders of that.  Again and again in the scriptures we hear God defined as “the father to the fatherless and defender of widows” (Exodus 22:22, Deut. 10:18, Psalms 10:14, 68:5, Jer. 49:11, and so many more!).  That is saying much more than God runs a mean orphanage.  The orphans and widows were without place in society.  They were outcast and ignored if they were lucky and reminded of their plight verbally, physically, emotionally, and socially if they were not.  But these people, God continuously reminds, are ones for whom he especially cares. 

Bullying, from pastors to students to co-workers, must stop, because it is not a joke and it is not simply “kids being kids” to our God, the friend of the lonely and the defender of the   picked-on.

            So to the bullies,

we say stop!

            To the bystanders,

we say act for God in stopping it.

            And the to the bullied,

we say God loves you, you are not alone.

I Decided to Go for a Little Run…..

That day, for no particular reason, I decided to go for a little run. So I ran to the end of the road. And when I got there, I thought maybe I’d run to the end of town. And when I got there, I thought maybe I’d just run across Greenbow County. And I figured, since I run this far, maybe I’d just run across the great state of Alabama. And that’s what I did. I ran clear across Alabama. For no particular reason I just kept on going. I ran clear to the ocean. And when I got there, I figured, since I’d gone this far, I might as well turn around, just keep on going. When I got to another ocean, I figured, since I’d gone this far, I might as well just turn back, keep right on going. — Forrest Gump

Happy Birthday to me!  Today I turn 33 years old.  Theoretically this is an important year in the life of ministry because as you know Jesus was crucified when he was 33 years old.  I am finishing up three years of ministry and Jesus’ ministry was three years long…..hmmm

No way am I comparing myself to Jesus, but the similarities are striking 🙂 …..

Anyway, I have a new project in the works I wanted to let you know about.  It all started a few weeks ago as I realized my birthday was approaching fast.  Since my birthday is in the middle of the year it is always a good time for me to take a look back at what happened during the past calendar year and review some of my yearly goals.  As a part of focusing my goals this year I chose three words to sum up my “resolutions.”  You can read those posts here, here and here. This time looking back at them I have not really fulfilled my goals.

Over the next week or so I will be taking a look at my goals and I will do my best to create a plan to carry them out.

However, I do have a plan for one goal — to lose weight.  My goal is to be under 300 pounds by the end of the year.  I still have a ways to go but I am dedicated more now than ever before to make that happen.

My plan is very simple — Run 100 miles

I don’t know if this sounded good because I just watched Forrest Gump or because I am crazy but I am going  to run 100 miles by September 4th of this year.  I know some of you out there can do that in a week or a month but I am giving myself 76 days to do it.

Running has never really been an interest of mine.  The thought of going out to run makes me a little nervous and agitated.  But I know I need to get out there and move and because of my competitive nature I want to meet my goal.

At first I know I am going to be walking a lot, the few times that I have gone out for a “run” most of it I spent walking but I am hoping that after I do about 50 miles I will be jogging if not running it by then.

This plan also is better for me than telling myself that I am going to commit to going to the gym three times a week, because when I do that and I miss a week, or a few days then I get angry with myself and I quit.  With this goal I have a few months to get it done.

I know there will be obstacles, next week I will be at Vanderkamp for a week long confirmation retreat,  I will be at Calumet later on in the summer and I am sure a few things will pop up here and there but I know I can do it.

If anyone else want to join in on this challenge let me know!  The more the merrier!  Or if you want to set your own goals let me know that as well!  Happy Running!

Biggest Loser Clergy

I have I have written before, I gathered six other clergy in my conference for a “Biggest Loser Clergy Edition.” Well on May 31st our journey together ended.  I am proud to say that I won the whole event.  I am very excited about this!!!

I worked really hard and I am proud of the things I have accomplished.  In the process I lost 23 pounds!

I started out on this journey weighing 386 pounds.  Through this experience with  I have gained the confidence that I have not had since I was in high school when it comes to my health and my physical ability.

To be honest I was really worried last May (2008) when I started having chronic back trouble and my weight was creeping close to 400 pounds.  Now I have regained the confidence that I once had.  I have confidence that I can continue to get healthy and I can push myself to live a better life.

Inspired by my success I really would like to pursue a dream that I have had for a few years.  That is to participate in a triathlon.  September 20th of this year there is a triathlon in our area called the Finger Lakes Triathlon.    They have a sprint triathlon which is a shorter route.  The events will be:  swim .45 miles bike 13 miles and run 3.1 miles.  I believe that if I can commit myself to train for that event like I committed myself to this program I will be able to do it.

The final totals for our journey together as a group:   We lost over 50 pounds and we met our goal of walking 436 miles.  I would like to thank all those people who followed me and supported me in my weight loss journey.  Now I would like to invite you to join me in my journey in becoming a triathlete!!

Biggest Loser Clergy update

It has been a week and I have been doing real well on our challenge.  Everyone has lost at least one pound and I am excited for the support we are able to give to one another.

I have been doing really well with my diet and exercise.  I have been drinking my Cinch Shakes for breakfast and lunch.  I don’t know why but we got the strawberry and I actually like it a lot.  So far I have been making it to the gym 3 times a week.  I would like to go one more day a week and get some swimming in.

I got an email today from Beth Lewis from Augsburg Fortress and she is going to give us some rewards for the Biggest Loser

“This is a great idea.  Augsburg Fortress will be happy to award the people in your group (up to 10 participants) who work together to complete this “436 mile walk” with a copy of Richard Hasler’s book,Surprises Around the Bend:  50 Adventurous Walkers. You can see the description here— I would like to coordinate this through you for simplicity.  In addition, for the person who loses the most weight and wins the money and the Bishop’s preaching, we will also give a complete 7-volume set ofPeople’s History of Christianity, a gift worth $245.

Is that good news or what?