Fall 52 Day Challenge starts this Wednesday the 9th

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I’m a big cheerleader for the 52DC. It is one of those peer created and peer led entities that actually works. It helps you in so many ways to achieve your personal goals.

Jessemaa – a long time Challenger – just reached his dream – breaking the 200 pound barrier. He started at 300 pounds. Check out his Post. He generously credits his participation in the 52 Day Challenges for helping him reach his goals.

For more information on the 52DC, check out Shrinkinguy’s Blog Post. He may not be a Low Carb guy – but he definitely knows the right way to do an alternative path. He is another guy who has had great success being part of the Challenges.

Hope to see you at the Starting Line. Sign Up here!


Goblet Squat & Kettlebell Swings

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The unending Joy of getting back what has been lost.

Once my hips started going south, I eliminated various exercises that caused pain. Then came the right hip replacement surgery and re-hab – and then the left hip replacement surgery on my other hip. The realignment of my hips put extra pressure on my knees and a new pain arose.

My mistake: delaying the surgeries and allowing the pain to prevent me from doing various exercises.

Here I am getting back at it. I’ve been trying to phase in Goblet Squats and Kettlebell Swings. both have been less than thrilling – until this morning.

Did the Goblet Squats with increased weight, deeper squat and more reps than I’ve been able to do. With – Less Pain.

goblet squat

Did Kettlebell Swings with increased weight, better form and more reps than I’ve been able to do. With – Less Pain.

kettlebell swing




Made this last night. Looks like a lot of work but the hardest part was mixing up the natural peanut butter. Served it over Cauliflower. I’ll add this to the Recipe section for permanent reference. Just wanted you to see this.

Yield: 4 servings (about 3 wraps per serving)


For the Sauce:

  • 1 Tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 Tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce – used low salt – still salty
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated fresh ginger
  • 1 Tablespoon honey (17.3 grams of Carbs) – Substituted 3 packets of Sugar Substitute
  • 1 Tablespoon creamy peanut butter – used a large rounded tablespoon of natural unsalted.
  • 1 Tablespoon coconut milk
  • 1 Tablespoon Sriracha (reduce if you prefer less spice)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch (1 tablespoon = 25 grams Carbs – 1/2 teaspoon => 4 grams Carbs – too little to worry about. Not sure if it was worth it.) 

For the Chicken:

  • 2 teaspoons coconut oil or canola oil.
  • 16oz. chicken, finely chopped – easier to cut and handle if partially frozen
  • 12 large outer leaves from a head of iceberg lettuce
  • 1/2 cup toasted peanuts. Toasted in a non-stick pan until started to brown.
  • 6 Thai chilies, thinly sliced (optional – these can be spicy!) Did not use.
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges – nice flavor.


In a small bowl, whisk together the ingredients for the sauce (sesame oil, rice vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, sweetener, peanut butter, coconut milk, Sriracha, and cornstarch). Whisk until evenly combined (some small lumps of peanut butter may remain).

Heat a large wok or sauté pan over high heat. When the pan is hot, add the oil (it should shimmer). Carefully add the chicken to the pan and cook, stirring continuously until the chicken begins to brown on the outside, 3-4 minutes. Add the prepared sauce to the pan all at once. Cook, stirring continuously, until the sauce has thickened slightly and the chicken is cooked through, about 2 minutes.

Transfer the chicken to a serving dish. Serve immediately with the lettuce leaves, peanuts, chilies, and lime wedges on the side. Spoon about ¼ cup of chicken mixture, peanuts, and chilies on top of each lettuce leaf and squeeze a lime wedge over the top just before eating.

VARIATION: Serve over Riced Cauliflower – double the sauce recipe.

Protein – How Much? The never ending discussion.

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 A recent meta-analysis of 49 prior studies with 1863 participants was published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine. The conclusions were not surprising.

I’ve always used the rule of 1 gram of protein per pound of Lean Body Mass. So for a guy – like me – weighing 180 pounds with 20% body fat, you would top out at 140+/- grams of protein per day.

Their conclusion: 1.6 grams of protein per kg of body weight. 180 pounds = 81.6 kg x 1.6 grams = 130 grams. Not a significant difference in calculation. Another way of looking at it – .70 grams of protein times your body weight.

Summary/conclusion Dietary protein supplementation significantly enhanced changes in muscle strength and size during prolonged RET [Resistance Exercise Training] in healthy adults. Increasing age reduces and training experience increases the efficacy of protein supplementation during RET. With protein supplementation, protein intakes at amounts greater than ~1.6 g/kg/day do not further contribute RET-induced gains in FFM [Fat-Free Mass].

Let this be your guide to how much protein you need to maximize your gains from exercise.

One more concept – don’t forget Gluconeogenesis: a metabolic pathway that results in the generation of glucose from certain non-carbohydrate carbon substrates, such as protein. Too much protein generates glucose and undermines Ketosis.

One more post script: This only applies if you are actually doing Resistance Training.

Summer 2017 52DC Ends – the Fall Challenge Starts


The Summer 2017 52  Day Challenge has ended. 

Here are my Final Numbers:

Clean Eats: 100/104/96 (104.17%) 
Resistance Training: 22/20 (110%) 
Cardio Training: 22/20 (110%) 
Personal Goal 1 (Push-ups): 2600/2600 (100%) 
Personal Goal 2 (Chin/Pull-ups): 1150/700 (164.29%)  

I managed to up my chin/pull-ups to 3 sets of 15. A set is 10 Chin-ups then 5 Pull-ups repeated 3 times. I’ve started mixing in push-ups and dips between the chins and pull-ups. I do this 3 times a week mixed in with the cardio machines.

I have a couple of “events” coming up which will impair my time in the gym, so I am lowering my goals just a bit for the next Challenge.

The Fall 52DC starts on August 9th. Check out the Announcement

Are you and your friends preparing for 5/10ks, Marathons, Triathlons, Tough Mudders, Spartans, etc… Form a Team-In-Training as part of this Challenge. This Challenge will help your Team be prepared for the big event.

Had a follow up exam with my Surgeon. Looks like I will eventually need a left knee replacement. Not gonna happen quickly – I am still rehabing the left leg. In this next Challenge, I need to focus on strengthening my left leg abductor muscle and get my Iliotibular band stretched and loosened. Have a script for PT – just have to find the time to get there.

Diabetes and a Very Low Carb Nutrition Plan

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I’ve previously written about jessemaa’s experience with going Very Low Carb High Fat – a/k/a Ketogenic diet. He is a guy who participates in the 52 Day Challenge. His wife has been an insulin dependent Diabetic for the last 25 year. She is now managing her diabetes almost solely with diet. She is doing this under a Doctor’s supervision – smart Lady.

Others on the 52DC have mentioned that they are pre-diabetes or in the earliest stages. Jessemaa put forth a discussion post to provide some of his and his wife’s experiences with going Ketogenic. Here is the Link to the Discussion.

I find it interesting to hear other people’s experiences with eating VLCHF, especially since it has now become a popular diet for our celebrity crowd.

My friend has lost 34 pounds and is almost back to her wedding weight. Her 12 yo son is down 18 pounds and looks fantastic. His doc was shocked.

Still – there is so much miss information, such as ketones are the cause of the weight loss – so take supplements that produce ketones in the presence of carbs and lose weight. Really? Might as well try Snake Oil.

Take a few minutes and read the discussion. Then take a couple of more minutes and tell us about your experience.

Summer 2017 – 52 Day Challenge starts Wednesday

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The Summer 52 Day Challenge starts this Wednesday, May 31st. The Sign-up Thread has been posted. The FAQs have been updated. The Sign-up Thread for the Weight Loss sub-challenge has been posted. Time to get on board.

I’ve been doing these Challenges for what seems like forever. I actually started in the Summer of 2008. Five Challenges a year for Nine years. Why?

I have lost weight – lots of weight – multiple times. I have never been able to keep it off.

I have started an exercise program multiple times. I have never been able to stick with it.

This is the first time that I have kept the weight OFF!

I have ONE – set of clothing that fits – no matter what the season. I no longer have multiple sizes tucked away in the back of the closet. The last group of over-sized clothing was pulled out of a storage bin under my bed and is being given to a charity fund raiser. The good part – I found a sweater that still had the tags on it — that finally fits. Too bad it is summer.

It is really nice to be able to reach into the closet and have it fit. No guessing – no hoping – it just fits.

This is the first time I have stuck with going to the gym. No – I am not able to lift up small VWs – but I can do multiple sets of chin-ups and pull-ups without using an assisted pull-up machine. I am recouping the strength in my legs after having both hips replaced over the last three years.

It is now 10 years of eating Very Low Carb and exercising 6 days/week. 

I can’t argue with the results – and I can let you know – that much of my success has come from participating in the 52 Day Challenges.

It’s your turn! See you at the Starting Line.

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