Archive for the ‘Wayne’ Category

Supportive Partner Woman and I just returned from a visit to sunny Florida. We went to take part in Reunion 2013, a gathering of like-minded Disney fans who get together for four days of meets, hi-jinks and whatever else happens.

There are, of course, some folks who just don’t get it, and that’s OK. More fun for the rest of us!

With that little bit out of the way, I’d like to report that the entire event was a blast. The highlight of the event is catching up with the friends we’ve met over the years. SPW and I often speak of how different the guest list would be were we to get married now instead of nine years ago. I can tell you that list would certainly be larger.

One of the biggest moments for me was the taking of the picture. If you recall, someone took a picture of me last year that really showed how obese I had become. I was determined to take a picture of the newer me, in the same spot.

meIt was a success, to say the least. I’ve lost a few pounds, or so it looks. I still have some ways to go, but it’s that much more believable when you can see tangible proof.

I’m also pleased to report, other than yet another blister incident, I survived a lot of park touring and I’m really not in any pain. The past three or four years, every trip has required a few days of recovery time. This time, not so much.

The blister is pretty substantial, enough that the doc prescribed antibiotics, in case there’s an infection. He found a liquid one, which goes down a lot easier than trying to eat it in yogurt or pudding. I was lucky that the crappy weather actually allowed me to see my regular doctor, since he had a cancellation.

I’m also pleased to report that Disney can be accommodating with my bariatric surgery. Even our group meal at Ohana was accommodated. I was able to pay the child’s price, since my capacity was so diminished. For the most part, I ordered off the child’s menu or I shared with SPW. The one full-sized item we got was a very yummy margherita pizza with prosciutto at Via Napoli in Epcot. We were lucky that the crust is very thin, so I was able to enjoy a lot of the pizza.

Another of the highlights of any Reunion is the chance to see the IllumiNations holiday tag. This is a four minute extra segment that includes a stirring rendition of Let there be Peace on Earth as performed by the Boys Choir of Harlem with narration by Walter Cronkite. I managed to get video of the tag (a little shaky, but not bad overall), so that’s posted below:

There were other special events, and the chance to make some new friends. It was also nice to chat with some people I knew by name, but had never really met, and have them tell me that my journey has been inspiring to them. It’s very humbling when you hear that.

A rare treat was being able to relive my first sight of the Osborne Lights. This was better, as the fine folks at Mouse Fan Travel had arranged a private viewing of the lights after the park closed. One of our group had never experienced the lights and there is no better way to experience them. It proves that despite all the issues they may have, Disney still knows magic.

Lights!

Lights!

I think the picture says it all.

In short, 2013 was one of the best Reunions I’ve attended. Special thanks go out to Beci & Annette from MEI/Mouse Fan Travel, Matt from Studios Central, Mike from Mouse World Radio, Mike from AllEars, and Len from touringplans.com. Might also mention that together, Mike, Len, Mike, Matt and Annette make up the WDW Today podcast team. These folks give up a lot of their time and energy to make sure everyone has a memorable experience and I know they don’t get thanked enough. I, for one, am honored to call each of them a friend.

I hope to have more photos and video up later in the week. Until then, stay warm!

So, fresh on the heels of completing my 5K yesterday, I thought I’d do it again.

Yeah… I’m getting the bug. I’ve been told it’s expensive.

Yikes.

Supportive Partner Woman and I hit the Rec today. We took adjacent treadmills and got started. I didn’t start the workout thinking 5K. I just set the timer for 45 minutes and thought I’d take it easy. Three minutes later, I’m clipping along at 3.8 mph and I’m not really winded. I added some 30 second running intervals to get the heart rate up, but as I got closer to the 45 minute mark, I opted to see if I could get 3 miles in 50 minutes. I managed to do that with 4 second left and finished my workout having done 3.06 miles in 51:15. That was a 16:44 pace, which is pretty much the best pace I’ve ever recorded (since doing 9 minute miles in high school).

This really gives me hope that I’ll be able to break 50 minutes at the WDW 5K. I still have four months until the race, so there’s still time.

The other good news was that Wayne & Stubby came through with no new injuries… no blisters, corns or whatever foot ailment you can think of.

I need to refocus on my diet, though. It’s not bad, but it’s slipping a bit. I just need to wrap my head around it, because what I was doing was working. My first step was to cut the amount of pasta I had with my meatballs. I’ve been using higher-fiber pasta for a while, but there’s still carbs and carbs are still the enemy. At least the meatballs have plenty of protein. I use 90% beef, plus cheese, eggs and spices. There’s also some bread crumbs, but they aren’t that big of an impact in terms of diet.

My hope is to knock the Happy Birthday Harry Potter 10K out this weekend. Then I can focus on the Banned Books race at the end of September. I’m thinking of that 13.1 miles as a goal. I know it won’t be fast, but I’m hoping to be able to at least walk it in one day without blisters.

It’s a goal… and I think it’s attainable.

One more blurb… if you would care to sponsor my 5K effort for the Avon Walk, please click here. They do amazing work and if you can spare $1 for every kilometer I’m going to finish, that would be greatly appreciated.

Have a great day!

Song of the Day: MLK – U2

Currently Reading: The First Counsel – Brad Meltzer

Today’s weight: 269 lbs – total loss of 111 pounds

I’ve posted a few times about participating in the Nerd Herd Racing Series. It’s a series of virtual 5 and/or 10K and half-marathon events based on pop culture themes sacred to nerds everywhere.

I was late to the party, but I managed to register for the entire series, which means I have three races to do by September 28. The first one was themed after Star Wars and Star Wars Day. It was originally intended to be completed by May 4, but I’m slow. 🙂

My first race bib

My first race bib

It’s a pretty warm day here in cow country. Sun beating down, humid as the dickens, still air. But I knew I had to get my work done. I figured I’d knock the 5K out since it needed to be done and, well, doing it on the treadmill at the air conditioned gym would be sort of like cheating. We have a nice loop in the neighborhood that’s a tad over a half mile. I figured six laps would do it and I could cross that 5K off my list.

Started out swimmingly. The sun felt good, just being outside felt good. Started up my pedometer app and walked. The iPhone served up a nice selection of tunes to keep me moving (Ozzy, Cake, Chic, Iron Maiden, Eminem, and NWA, to name a few). All good.

Made the first and second laps and I could feel the pace start to slow a bit. I wasn’t killing it, coming back from Wayne‘s missing toenail, but I was working up a sweat. That’s when I realized how much of the marathon game is mental. You feel the sun beating on your head. The head and humidity surrounding you, and while your body can take it, it’s your mind saying, “Screw this, let’s go back, grab a shower and watch The Price is Right.”

My respect for the folks who run marathons soared because I was feeling that at one mile and they actually run for 26 miles.

I buried those doubting feelings and gave the voice in my head a smack down. Because it had to be done. If I couldn’t walk a 5K without giving up, well, that would mean all that I’ve been through was worthless.

I wasn’t going to let that happen. I’ve taken the easy way out waaaaaaaaay too many times.

Not this time. No way, no how.

Not the greatest pace, but it's the distance that really matters.

Not the greatest pace, but it’s the distance that really matters.

So, I finished. Hot, sweaty, but I completed what I started. And I feel good about it.

As you can see, it was a pace slightly over an hour. That’s not optimal, but it’s a start. When I do the second leg (the Happy Birthday Harry Potter 5K/10K), that 5K number will be under an hour. And I’ll have a photo to prove it.

In other news, Supportive Partner Woman and I got to pay a visit to the holy temple of Wegman’s over the weekend. Got a lovely piece of swordfish that I just simply baked with some olive oil, sea salt and fresh ground pepper. Very flavorful. I also picked up some 7.66 pounds of ground beef. SPW has been asking for meatballs, so I thought I’d make them for her. I’m always amazed by the selection and quality of meat at Wegman’s. And the price… that 90% lean beef clocked in at $2.99 a pound. Can’t beat it unless you want to butcher your own cows and I’m pretty sure Wanda would take issue with that.

Oh, almost forgot that SPW and I appeared on the most recent episode of the Mickey Miles Podcast. Click here and choose Episode 96 if you want to give it a listen. I’d like to thank Mike & Michelle for having us on and letting us share our story. They do a great job and I’d encourage you to give them a listen.

That’s all I have for today. Hope you have a great day and remember to stay active. Keeps you young.

So, the saga of Brian’s toes continue.

Wayne had a callous that cracked last week. It was not pretty to look at, but then again, my toes usually are NOT things of beauty.

Then Monday, I noticed Stubby had a crack in the callous on the tip as well, plus Wayne was looking kind of nasty. I had an appointment to see the boys, so on my way, I called my podiatrist.

He could see me in about 90 minutes.

I did an abbreviated workout at the fitness center, went home, washed my hair, collected Supportive Partner Woman (Brave little toaster!), and went back to the Health Campus (or should I call it the Suburban Outpatient Pavilion?).

Dr. Miller was right there, and gave me crap about needing my Dr. Miller fix, since I had only been there the week before. He looked at Stubby first. He (Miller) wound up trimming the edges of the crack and gluing things back together.

Then it was on to Wayne.

Turns out, the reason Wayne was getting a little gushy was that there was a blood blister under the nail. So, it was off with the toenail. I do have some increased feeling, so it did ache pretty good, but I’m happy to report he’s healing nicely.  I was sent off without being sentenced to the Boot of Shame, but I was also admonished to rub my feet every day with ammonium lactate cream to keep the calluses soft and less prone to cracking.

See, Monday was an all-around lousy day.

Mom and Dad in happeir times

Mom and Dad in happier times

It was my dad’s birthday, and that’s always tough to deal with since he’s gone. He would’ve been 78 and I still miss him every day. Of course, tomorrow would’ve been the folks’ 43rd wedding anniversary. That’s also tough. It reminds me of the last one the celebrated. Dad was in the rehab center at the hospital and my sister and I brought in a nice steak dinner from a local restaurant, dressed in nice clothes and acted as the wait staff, even had candles. It was one of the last happy times… he was gone a month later.

Losing him to cancer has been one of the major reasons why I support many of the cancer charities. I’d give anything to have him back and if, through my efforts, I can save someone else from the anguish that I’ve been through, I’m going to do it.

Whether that be supporting the Avon Walk with my participation in Team AllEars or my newest endeavor, the Nerd Herd Racing Series (which supports stupidcancer.org), either way, I’m doing something to help others because so many folks have helped and supported me with my efforts against my own diabetes.

Now, many of you might be wondering what the Nerd Herd Racing Series is all about. Simply put, it’s a series of running (or whatever form of locomotion that you prefer) events themed around various nerdly events. The first race was the May the Fourth 5K (Star Wars), the second was a Happy Birthday Harry Potter 5K or 10K (Harry Potter, duh!) and the third will be a 5K or half-marathon to celebrate Banned Books Week (We’re talking really subversive stuff like The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and To Kill a Mockingbird).

I came late to the party, but there were a few slots open for the trilogy and I managed to get signed up for all three of them. Not only do the proceeds go to stupidcancer.org, you get some sweet bling to display. The best part is that you get a week to complete each event and you can choose to do it all at once or break it up into manageable chunks for those of us who are running-challenged.

Now, if you’re thinking these folks are small-time, well, allow me to enlighten you. The series (through two races) has donated some $10,300 to stupidcancer. That total is only going to go up. If projections hold up, the total should eclipse $15,000. That’s pretty good numbers.

Good people doing good work.

That’s the real lesson… do something good with your life. There’s more to life than petty jealousy and selfishness. Make an impact on someone else’s life. Even if it’s just throwing a couple extra dollars in the Salvation Army kettle or dropping your spare change in one of the myriad good cause cans at your local pizza joint. You’re helping someone less fortunate. Hell, by donating blood, you’re helping someone in dire need.

The Big Whoop

The Big Whoop

In other news, SPW and I managed to make it to Root’s Market on Tuesday. Managed to get some nice produce and some fresh turkey bacon. I have to cook that up (probably tomorrow) and see how it is. I’m constantly amazed by how much local food is available at Root’s. There are so many local farms and butchers selling fresh stuff, not to slight the folks making baked goods and the fast food-type places. We passed the “Big Whoop” which I thought would send SPW (Fan of Whoopie Pies!) into a swoon. It was the size of my head! Thing was huge!

P.S. I managed to walk 20 miles last week. It wasn’t easy, but I did it. Makes me think I’m going to complete that banned books half marathon.

Song of the Day: Tears are Falling – KISS

Currently Reading: The Book of Fate – Brad Meltzer

Current weight: 271 (109 pounds down)

Greetings!

I got to go back to the fitness center today. I had to take it easy, on instructions from Ryan and Cory, but that might change after I see the doctor on Wednesday. Here’s hoping I can sweat next time I’m there.

I have another doctor appointment tomorrow morning. The second toe on my left foot (the one next to Wayne) developed a corn/blister that seems to be hanging around. I’ll probably wind up back in the Boot of Shame. So, I’ll let Dr. Miller take a look at it and see what’s what. Maybe I’m being alarmist, but I’d rather not take the chance on there being a problem. After losing the better part of one toe, you tend to be a tad overprotective.

I also am able to start puree foods today. I attempted to overreach and tried some scrambled egg white this morning. That didn’t go so well. The end result was that the egg white’s residence in my digestive tract was short-lived. Hey, I knew it had to happen and I’m glad that it did, in a way. My pureed turkey chili stayed down, though, and actually tasted pretty good. It’s not the consistency that I like from chili, but it was full of flavor and, most importantly, protein. Supportive Partner Woman (not a real lover of chili!) had a bowl of it and pronounced it to be edible, so that’s always good. I also baked a batch of chocolate chip cookies yesterday so she could take them to work and share the awesomeness with her boss. Apparently they went over well.

I think I’ll share the recipe… it’s bariatric-friendly!

Turkey Chili

Ingredients:

1 medium yellow onion, chopped (I only had red ones… they work, too)
6 cloves of garlic, diced
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 cup yellow corn
1 lb. ground turkey
1 can of red or kidney beans (15.5 oz) (I use kidney)
1 can of diced tomatoes (I found some with chipotle peppers in the can… perfect)
1/2 tbsp cumin
1/2 tbsp chili powder
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
4 squirts of Tabasco
olive oil
salt & pepper to taste

Directions:

In a medium soup pot add some olive oil and cook onions, garlic, corn and bell pepper over medium heat, about ten minutes. Separately brown the turkey meat, drain and set aside. In a food processor, blend the vegetables and return to the soup pot. Over low heat, add the beans (drained), tomatoes, turkey meat, Tabasco, cilantro, cumin and chili powder. Cover and simmer for about 10 minutes. Salt & pepper to taste. Should serve 4-5.

It’s a nice, healthy dish that will serve up a lot of protein. 3 oz of ground turkey has 23g of protein and a cup of kidney beans comes in a 16g of protein.

If you make it, feel free to customize it. If you’re a bariatric patient, feel free to throw it in the food processor and puree it. Just remember to eat slowly and stop when you’re full.

Have a great day folks!

Today's summary

Today’s summary

After doing a night on third shift, my first stop was the Rec. Did a smidge over 30 minutes of cardio, which is 10 more minute than I did yesterday. Maybe tomorrow will be 10 more minutes. We shall see. Wasn’t my best distance or time, but I still need to take care of Wayne while getting my work in. If I don’t, then bad things happen and I get even fatter. I don’t want to be that guy.

The hardest part of the shift change is going to be establishing a time when I should go to the gym. Ideally I should go before my shift, get the endorphins going and that will make surviving third shift that much easier. The downside is sleep, or lack thereof. I often joke about plenty of time to sleep when you’re dead, but I’ve grown to appreciate some quality shuteye.

I also thought I forgot my insulin kit last night. As much as I am looking forward to never needing to use it again, it still keeps my going for right now. Turns out I left it in the gym bag. Another stellar recall achievement by me!

At any rate, I need to grab some of that shuteye I was talking about.

Had a foot doctor appointment this morning to see how Wayne is doing. In a word, he’s pleased.

About time that phalangeal bastard behaves himself. Just sayin’

Prescribed care is to continue with the betadyne for a few more days, then I’m good to go. Most importantly for me, this means I can get back to a somewhat normal workout.

See, I’m released from the Boot of Shame. Woohoo!

In other news, we had the family combined birthday thing yesterday. My mom, sister, aunt and uncle all went to the Lobster of Redness. Sadly, Supportive Partner Woman (possessor of a norovirus!) was unable to attend due to illness. My aunt and uncle extended their invitation for Easter dinner and I had to tell them that I wasn’t sure I’d be able to travel too much, being all of 5 days post surgery at that point. My mother seemingly forgot I told her I had a date set. That didn’t go over particularly well, but what can you do? We did manage to talk about it afterward and while her and my sister might not agree with my choice, they’ve both pledged their support, which really means a lot. Granted, if my mother decides to come and stay with me while I’m recouping, it will be like the genesis of Stubby, Part Deux. We’ll just burn that bridge when we get there.

The bad part is that the week away from regular workouts has probably not helped my weight loss efforts. I’m thinking of trying a pre-liquid sort of liquid diet. Two meals including fruit, yogurt and/or protein shakes, and a sensible dinner. I’m also going to hope I don’t get hit with what SPW got hit with.

I’ll continue to keep you posted as I transition to third shift. I’m also assuming that you can expect some rather doped up posts while I’m in the hospital. They supposedly have wifi, so that’s a plus. I have the iPad ready to go.

As many of you know, Evil Wayne (not to be confused with Vegan Wayne) has caused me some problems of late. Namely a giant blister that left me short a toenail and a good part of toe.

I’m pleased to report that as of 6:00 tonight, Wayne is actually looking pretty good, all things considered. Looks like the wound is scabbing over nicely. This is a good thing that I’m attributing to my much better controlled glucose levels.

It took me a lot to understand what was involved in getting the sugar under control. See, I’m a huge carb junkie. I love carbs and would scarf unbelievable amounts of pasta and bread, not to mention snack foods. That’s a big no-no if you’re battling The Beetus. I didn’t understand that at first, figuring I was OK because something didn’t have much actual sugar in it. Well, maybe not, but the 40g of carbs are an issue. It makes a huge difference. Have I eliminated carbs? No, but I’m eating a lot less of them.

It really came to my mind again today when I was told by a friend that she had been diagnosed with Type-2 (that’s the type I have). I hope that she will use me as a resource, since I’m a pretty good example of what not to do when you’re diabetic. Or, I was. I’m just so excited that the toe is getting better pretty quickly so I can get back to the gym at full speed. I’m just going to make sure that I protect the toe with a moleskin wrap. Blisters just slow me down. Plus, the surgery date is three weeks away. How’d that happen?

I’m still really excited and freaked out at the same time. I think it’s fear of the unknown that get’s me freaked out. I actually don’t mind the anesthesia… it puts me out pretty good and I usually don’t have much memory of what’s going on. This will mark my third time going under general anesthesia, so I’m getting kind of used to it. The part that’s really freaking me out is the possibility of a catheter. I’m just not thrilled with the idea of getting some tube run up through my junk. Of course, talking to some post-op patients at the clinic, not all of them had a cath done. I’m hoping I’m one of the lucky ones. I guess we’ll know in a few short weeks.

So, we’re supposed to get a boatload of snow here in the northeast. If you’re in the area, please be careful when driving and especially while shoveling.

The next post will be #200. Guess I need to come up with something awesome. Wish me luck!

 

Song of the Day: Bright Lights, Bigger City – Cee-Lo Green

I was so going to parody the Ballad of Jed Clampett, but the only words I could think of to rhyme with blister were Twister and mister, and, well, trust me when I say that nothing good would come of that.

So, I did manage to get to the podiatrist’s office this afternoon. He took one look at Wayne, pulled out the cutters and went to work. Several giant pieces of toenail and whatnot later, I’m down to eight toenails and  a lot of angry looking toe. The good news is that there’s no sign of infection and he thinks it should dry up pretty quickly. Once it’s scabbed over, then I can get out of the Boot of Shame. Out of sensitivity to the readers, I did not take pictures.

Also in the good news department, the wonderful exercise physiologists managed to switch up my workout this morning to include non-weight-bearing cardio and a lot of weight training. So it’s not a total loss. I can do the bike, the rowing machine and the hand cycle, as well as lift weights. Woohoo! Again, I just have to be careful to protect the area. On that note, I ordered the multipack of giant rolls of moleskin. I should probably take to just applying that every time I go to the gym, even after I’m healed. The best part is that you can get it from Amazon really inexpensively and it’s delivered right to the door.

Now, my biggest worry is what’s coming in terms of the winter storm. I’m not sure how the Boot of Shame will handle inclement weather. Maybe I just need to wrap my loot in a trash bag to get through the snow?

At any rate, I think I’ll call it quits for now. Hope you all have a great night!

So, another good workout today. I hit 3.25 miles and averaged 3.12 mph. It marked the second day in a row I waked more than 3 miles. Of course, Wayne was feeling left out and decided to sprout a blister roughly the size of the Hope Diamond. Sigh.

Every time this happens, I’m so tempted to just say, “The hell with it!”

Somehow, I manage to pull it together and keep plugging away.

It’s what I do.

So, tomorrow morning, I’ll call the podiatrist, play my trump card. See, The Beetus is sort of like a head of the line pass at the doctors office. Apparently, they don’t want me to lose another toe, maybe they lose merit badges in Doctor Scouts for dismemberment? No idea. Hopefully he can get rid of the dead skin and we can get the ball rolling on the healing.

So, other than that, I’ve managed to burn some calories, walk some miles and behave.

In other news, I did go to Save Mart and browse a rather impressive selection of protein powders. I picked up five pounds of vanilla and two pounds of banana cream powder. The banana cream mixes well with Greek yogurt and gives you a nice shot of protein in a smooth mixture.

So, until I see the podiatrist, I’m in the Boot of Shame. It sucks, but what can you do? I’ll keep you posted.

20130303-202227.jpg

20130303-202244.jpg