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90 Day Nutrition & Weight Challenge!

April14

[Update] Going on a trip July 1st, so stopping this a little early. I lost about 12lb, and been a bit flat the last month at around 220. That seems to be my normal weight with the added muscle. I def played with macros and felt lost. The coach was useless as it was just a service to cheer weight loss and not teach you about how to make sure you know what you are eating. When I get back from this trip I plan to play more with the balance between carbs/protein/fat. I hit some low points where I had no energy through this and I want to figure out how to do that better.

I am doing a 90-day challenge to lose weight, maintain muscle, and learn more about nutrition. This will run from April 13th through Sunday, July 12th. I am going to work with a nutritionist at Stronger U and read some books.

Why am I doing this?

#1 – I want to learn more about nutrition and the ratios of what I should be eating (carb/fat/protein). I want to understand the science behind increasing and decreasing my meals while ramping up workouts because I sometimes crash. And, I want to see if I can eat less meat while getting enough protein on my AIP diet (ongoing concern).

#2 – I want to lose weight but without losing muscle. I currently weigh 232lb and that is the heaviest I’ve ever been. A big chunk of that is the muscle I’ve gained from rehab/ST over the last couple of years. But, I am sure a good chunk of that is fat too.

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3kg of my favorite cheese has arrived :)

February19

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China: Shanghai Dumpling Tour

November4

My dad and I did an amazing food tour a few days back so we decided to do one focused just on dumplings next (I LOVE dumpings, it was 90% dumplings and 10% a few other delicious things). It was fantastic and run by UnTour. I liked the first food tour a little better, but they were both great! This one was unique as at the end we got to make our own shrimp dumplings in a kitchen :). Very fun!

Our dumplings tasted great even if they all looked a little funny, so much fun :)

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Asiago Cheese = Fav Cheese

May4

I love the taste of Asiago cheese, it almost has this bitter nutty taste at the end. The longer it is aged the more I like it :). Along with Manchengo, it is some of my favorite cheese. I finally decided to dig into it’s history & locale and here is what I learned…

What is it? It is an Italian cheese made of cow milk. The only authentic asiago cheese is made in the alpine region of the Asiago plateau in Italy (they have a EU DOP to stipulate that is the only place that can really call itself Asiago – EU DOPs are fascinating in themselves btw). There are some places in the USA that call themselves Asiago but are not, and they will taste much different than true Asiago (verified). Asiago can be aged or served fresh (I like aged).

Map of region in top of Italy’s boot:

History? They can trace it back to around the year 1000 from that region in Italy. It started off being from goat milk, but by 1500 cows replaced it. Why did they switch? Cows are gentle chewers of grass and stopped digging up the valuable grass roots. Crazy.

It can be hard to find, and impossible to order online still :(

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Happiness is…

April25

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200 Days On Paleo AIP…

November27

I’ve been on a strict Paleo AIP diet for about 200 days which is quite a bit longer than when I did it in 2015. The diet is meant to reduce any ingredients that could increase gut inflamation and short description below:

“By removing the foods that contribute to a leaky gut, gut dysbiosis (the wrong numbers, relative quantities, or types of microorganisms typically growing in the wrong locations in your gut), hormone imbalance, and that stimulate inflammation and the immune system, you can create the opportunity for your body to heal.”

For anyone who lives on this diet out there on the internets I salute you. This is a tough diet and takes some getting used too. I’ve gotten to a point I enjoy it, and although it takes some prep I’ve gotten pretty efficient. I bought a HUGE 15.5 Quart Le Creuset Dutch oven and I cook most of meals in it. I can load this thing up on a Sunday, and eat off it for a good 4 to 5 days. It was expensive as hell but well worth it given how delicious food tastes as opposed to a slow cooker. I even cooked the Thanksgiving turkey in it :).

The hardest bit is the loss of eating out with other people. It is weirdly “un-human” to go out to eat, but not be able to eat or drink with other people. It makes you feel very weird, like you are not human. It is hard to describe but can be weirdly intense and unsettling.

I miss pizza the most.

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Thoughts after 11 weeks on the Paleo AIP Diet…

March7

I’ve been on the Paleo Autoimmunte Protocol (AIP) Diet for almost 3 months and I wanted to post some thoughts on it :).

First, what is the Paleo AIP diet? In the creator’s own words:

“This diet is appropriate for everyone with diagnosed autoimmune disorders or with suspected autoimmune diseases. It is very simply an extremely nutrient-dense diet that is devoid of foods that irritate the gut, cause gut dysbiosis and activate the immune system.”

Why would you want to avoid those types of foods?

“By removing the foods that contribute to a leaky gut, gut dysbiosis (the wrong numbers, relative quantities, or types of microorganisms typically growing in the wrong locations in your gut), hormone imbalance, and that stimulate inflammation and the immune system, you can create the opportunity for your body to heal.”

Basically if you are on this diet you can’t eat any grains, eggs, nuts, seeds, nightshades (potatoes, tomatoes, peppers etc), rice, sugar, alcohol, and a number of other things. It is easier to focus on what you can eat :). Which is good meats like beef, lamb, fish, and green veggies. Plus a little fruit.

I am on this diet because Doctor’s think I have crohn’s disease (an autoimmune disease). I am not sure I agree as they don’t seem to even know much about the disease. But, I do know my gut was inflamed last year, and I decided to follow this diet to give my gut a chance to heal naturally before my next checkup.

So what is this diet like after 11 weeks?

When I started the diet I was already doing a lite version of paleo so I didn’t have to go through the whole “paleo flu” thing. The paleo flu is this 2 to 3 week period where you feel lethargic and out of it while your body transitions off grains.

I’ve been on the Paleo AIP diet for about 11 weeks and I can say that it isn’t too bad from an eating perspective. I don’t require a lot of diversity in my food even though I enjoy it, and that is good since this diet doesn’t offer much diversity unless you put a lot of effort into it. I cook a lot of slow cooked meals and end up throwing sweet potatoes, carrots, mushrooms, and other veggies into a big pot along with different parts of beef/lamb/duck/ etc. Plus I eat a lot of fish and salads. I love vegetables and my diet was pretty good prior to this so I never really had crazy cravings for anything. I never ate much sugar either which made it easy.

Mentally this diet is very difficult though. It totally strips you of normalcy with a huge aspect of your life, and that makes it very hard.

What is the biggest shock?

The loss of normal, on this diet you can’t eat out and you have to prepare and think about every meal. It is exhausting :). I also miss the normalcy of drinking alcohol.

I am not a picky eater, I love trying everything. When I am out in the world and get hungry I can’t just grab something. And, given that I am a big traveler that is really hard as if you are going to be strict with this diet it totally changes your travel style. In fact it is impossible to travel in some places on this diet (ie rural china).

What were the other big shocks?

Meal Prep Time…
It takes a lot of time each day to prep a meal and that has really impacted my schedule. With a slow cooker or dutch oven I generally am chopping a lot of veggies to prep a meal, and my other meals require a lot more prep too. I was used to a bowl of granola with fruit on most morning, and now it takes a lot more time to get food done. And, you have to plan or you end up crazy hungry with nothing to eat.

Cost…
It cost a lot of money for meat, I am a pretty big / active guy and it cost a lot of money to fill me up. There are some ways to make it cheaper by eating a lot of offal but it is still expensive compared to my diet before.

Impact?

Unfortunately I can’t judge the impact of this diet yet because I wasn’t having any physical symptoms. I started this diet because they saw some ulcers during a medical check up and figured it couldn’t hurt to help my body heal along with some meds. I am going to circle back in July for a checkup and see how things look. For the first 2 months of this diet I was very strict, and now I’ll have a treat every so often.

I do trust the medical research the creator of this diet did though, and her book is fantastic. I highly recommend Sarah Ballantyne’s book on this diet and the research behind it. Amazing work!

My Chicago Deep Dish Pizza

March3

I forgot how fun it is to cook :), I made some delicious deep dish pizza and apart from some small problems with the dough it was really fun! Can’t wait to start breaking bread again.

IMG_5245

PS, people… it is uber confusing when you say “11/2” cups of water, maybe you meant 1 1/2???

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Amazing Mac & Cheese

February5

photo (1)

Most amazing macaroni and cheese I’ve ever had!

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Kangaroo Is Delicious

November30

Finally cooked some Kangaroo, it is delicious! A bit more flavor than beef, a touch of delicious gamey taste maybe? Love it and bought a bunch more. Nick also likes it. Next time I need to do higher heat and cut down on cook time too.

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Victoria Market In Melbourne = Awesome

June24

I’ll post some more soon but for now just a quick note on how amazing the Queen Victoria Market in Melbourne is! Nick and I went today and wandered for a long time.

They have a ton of local wine vendors out and tasted a lot of different kinds. I ended up buying some honey mead, local dry red, two week old olive oil, and some local port. All delicious plus we just take the bottles back and can refill them for even less. Nick got a 750ml bottle for 10 bucks and 7 bucks to refill it with delicious wine. Pretty sweet deal.

Fresh rustic ciabatta bread and fruit/nut loaf. Both delicious. Goat cheese / olive oil mixture and nick got three quarter bricks of cheese for $10 bucks. Hmm what else? Two bags of awesome mushrooms, other veggies, etc! Awesome place and only a few blocks from our apartment, going to switch to buying veggies etc there as better quality and cheaper than the grocery store.

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Why I Love Germany (One of many reasons)…

March21

So I got to Frankfurt Germany yesterday and made it to Europa Park by about 2pm. Yes, the work conference is at a theme park. And of course with it being Sunday there was no food easily accessible. So being super tired and jet lagged I crashed with no food. I slept around 10 hours and read for a while before departing for German breakfast…

So why do I love Germany so much? German breakfast is fucking awesome. And what is even more awesome, they literally were serving the same breakfast rolls I had when I was in high school on a trip to Berlin and my host mom served breakfast (which I love (they are so good)). Here is what I ate for breakfast:

Coffee (rare for me but jet lag)
1 Breakfast Roll
1 Wheat Breakfast Roll
1 Whole Wheat or something slice of German Bread
1 Piece Bacon
1 Piece Wurst
1 Piece Random Pig Something
1 Egg
1 Random thinly sliced pig something.
1 Another random thinly sliced pig something (also delicious)
1 piece Swiss cheese.
1 glob of 3 fruit jam.
1 glob of real butter.
2 pieces of Bree cheese.
Apricot Yogurt
Raisins
Fruit Salad that had MANGOs!!!!
And, 1 of the most delicious cinnamon bread hunks I’ve ever had.

I can’t wait for breakfast tomorrow, because there is even more to try.

So after I ate this awesome breakfast I accidentally invaded Poland, I just couldn’t help it, I had so much energy and I just accidentally took it over. Oh well. If anything the Versailles treaty should have limited the awesomeness of the German breakfast, no way would WW2 have started.

And later I ran 15 miles, longest yet! Awesome trails through this area and got to see a lot of the surrounding country side. And made it to some small town that had a cool church.

Dark Rye Bread

April19

I made two loaves of dark herb bread last night! I even substituted oil for pesto to see how that would work (deliciously if you were wondering!). They have Rosemary, garlic, and parsley in them. Thanks to Lindsey for a lot of the ingredients!

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Japan Rocks!

February24

Very cool place and having a great time so far. All the time on trains seeing the country has given me a lot of time to read, I’ve read 9 books in the last 3 to 4 days, reviews here! Just fun reads which is nice, almost like I’m at the beach.

My favorite Japanesism yet:

Ben: Do you have sandwich package x? (to train trolly girl)
Train Girl: (in broken english) Sorry we are out, do you want rice with crab flakes on it?
Ben: YES!!! (and i was thinking why did she even ask!!! I love rice with crab flakes on it!!!!)

They were delicious.

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RIP Birthday Week 2009…

August6

Born July 19th 2009
Died August 1st 2009

A brave birthday week, it had such a long and full life with everything I like, good friends, beach, Mexico, scotch, beer, ceviche, and girls with whistles and everclear.

Rest in peace birthday week.

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This is bwb’s personal blog so he can share his thoughts with the world, however scary or silly they might be. Plus family and friends can track what I am up too, and where I am in the world.

I am pretty simple. I love Mangos. I love the ocean, although mostly at sunset as I’m a ginger. I love to travel, eat exotic food, read, and use my imagination. I love creating and developing ideas into businesses, understanding how all businesses work, and building cool stuff. I am a globalist and see the entire world as my responsibility and playground. And, I am married to an amazing woman who makes life even more fun :)! And, we are now the proud parents of Calico Jack :).


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