Quick and Delicious, Mostly Nutritious, Ramen Noodle Lunch

Oh joy, posting from my phone! That means this will be quick.

I just wanted to share a super simple recipe I made up with very little creativity, if you know anything about cooking. Just a guess, but I’m sure it only cost $2 or somewhere around there.

What you’ll need:

  • 1 packet of Ramen Noodles
  • Previously cooked and seasoned chicken breast
  • 2 hard boiled eggs
  • Fresh cilantro
  • Fresh basil
  • Red onion

What you’ll do:

  • Open the Ramen
  • Shred the chicken
  • Peel the eggs
  • Rough chop the herbs
  • Thinly slice the onions

How you’ll assemble it:

  • Put the brick of noodles on the bottom of a bowl
  • Pile everything else on top
  • Cover everything with water
  • Open the seasoning packet and sprinkle all over everything

How you’ll cook it:

  • In the microwave for 4 to 4.5 minutes (depending on your microwave and altitude)

How it will look:

Ramen Noodle Lunch

How you’ll eat it:

  • Any way you feel comfortable and necessary

What you’ll think:

  • “God, Dave really knows what he’s talking about. This is delicious!!”

How you’ll thank me:

  • Retweeting this on The Twitter
  • Sharing this on your Facebook Machine
  • Subscribing to New Post Notifications
  • Sending me packages of various cheeses, sausages, and craft beers

Thanks and Enjoy!!

Ryan Maier Training Success Story and Distance Coaching

About 2 years ago, I wrote a post about my style of personal training. I didn’t dictate my clients had to do anything. I didn’t just mindlessly put them through grueling workouts, forcing them to lose weight. I didn’t keep them in the dark and allow them to think that training and nutrition is some kind of “magical, mystifying, secretive” black magic that most people do.

In fact, I did the opposite. I informed them why I was having them do the things they did. I educated them on performing movements based on their physiology. I taught them how to do the movements safely and what was going on as they were performing them. I helped them interpret their own psychology which would help them decide their session for the day.

It is always my intent to lose clients. I don’t want clients to stick around for years at a time. I want to educate them. I want them to be able to make their own decisions. I want them to say, “hey, man, I’ve learned so much from you, that I’m gonna take it from here.”

Last night, I saw the most amazing thing. My last client that I’ve trained posted a 2.5 year progress picture. I only trained him for 6 months (if I remember correctly). And after that 6 months, he’s taken control of his own journey, using the tools I taught him. He’s become a real friend and a real personal trainer, passing along the same information I gave to him.

His progress is the reason I started training, and it’s the reason I wish I was still training people. So with that in mind, if any of this sounds rad-tastical to you, I’m open to the possibility of distance coaching. With today’s technology, I can teach you these same things using Facetime, Skype, YouTube, etc. etc. If you’re interested, get ahold of me, and let’s see if we can work something out. But be aware, the price is not “free”.

Thank you, Ryan, and congrats!

Distance coaching transformationP.S. You should totally follow his blog and ‘Like’ Maier Strong on Facebook: Maier Strong | The Pursuit of Better Through Biofeedback

 

Insects on Khaosan road Thailand

Is the Paleo Diet Right for You?

Oohhhhhhhhh boy. This post is going to be long. As Queen Gorgo said, “This will not be over quickly. You will not enjoy this.” Except that, I really hope you do; otherwise, this is just a lot of typing for no good reason.

So anyways, I’m writing this up for a Twitter follower, galclimber, that asked my opinion on going Paleo. (That is, trying out the Paleo diet.) She mentions that her friends are telling her she “needs” to go paleo to increase her climbing performance, and also thinks her current diet is somehow attributing to recurring injuries. Let’s get this show on the road!

The Basics

First off, let me warn you that I will be using the word diet interchangeably to mean similar but different things:

  1. Diet – As in, your general, daily eating habits: how, what, when, and why you eat the things you do.
  2. Diet – As in, a structured plan that allows some things, restricts others, and may even suggest the how and the when. These are usually temporary and used to lose weight quickly (though, this is not the intent of paleo).

What is the Paleo diet?

The Paleo Diet is a….diet….that is modeled after the….diet….of men and women living in the Paleolithic time period of earth. Theorists and evolutionary dieticians believe that our current digestive system has not yet had enough time to evolve; and therefore, we should only eat food that was present at the time when our stomachs matched our food source.

Simply put: we should only be eating food as it existed during the Paleolithic era because our stomachs haven’t evolved to digest foods in modern/Western diets. (Or so they say.)

Paleo-Friendly Foods

Foods found in their raw state, as they would be in nature and unprocessed. This includes meats, eggs, fruits, vegetables, and nuts. (This is an extremely generalized, simplified list.)

Unfriendly Paleo Foods

Just because you may find a food source in its raw, unprocessed state, doesn’t mean it’s paleo. Raw foods that are off-limits: corn, potatoes, rice, and probably some more I can’t think of right now. In general, carbohydrates (other than fruits and veggies), grains, and seeds are THE DEVIL!!

Defining Paleo

Furthermore, if the contradictory food lists weren’t confusing enough, it’s near impossible to define what is actually considered paleo anymore. Paleo now has tons of spin-offs, similar to vegetarianism: ovo vegetarians, lacto vegetarians, and ovo-lacto vegetarians. There are people that follow a paleo diet but consider rice to be ok (and so on and so forth).

On top of that, white potatoes are bad but sweet potatoes are good; almond milk is ok because it’s just almond powder and water but yet, they still must be processed; dairy milk is usually considered bad, but sometimes it’s ok in moderation, under the right conditions (like raw milk); nuts are good but seeds are bad (aren’t nuts seeds? Aren’t green beans vegetables that contain seeds?). Paleo man may have been cannibalistic; should we as well?

When money gets involved, the term is used even more loosely. One of the original paleo creators/researchers even bent the knee when he saw how much money could be had! “Milk is bad; processed foods are bad; you’re guaranteed to get cancer; you’ll die early. Oh wait!! I can get rich slangin’ supplements to people that just want a magic pill?!?! I mean, ‘yeah, those things are ok; I guess you can have them.'” Primal Fuel

Shit, I’ve been watching the paleo craze since it started and even tried it for 6 months, and I don’t even know what the heck is or isn’t considered paleo. Most I can tell is that everyone is on the paleo diet; they just define it differently than anyone/everyone else, much like “eating clean”. Don’t even get me started on that one.

The Common Sense of Paleo

Hopefully by now, you can tell I’m not a fan of the paleo diet, or at least the way it’s touted, marketed, and idolized by its cult-like followers. But it does do a lot of things right!

If you are overweight and recognize that your eating habits are far from “good”, getting away from processed carbs, frozen meals, and junk food is probably a good idea. Eating more lean meats (that were not first battered and deep fried), fresh fruit, and fresh veggies is a wonderful idea! The thought of getting off the couch is even better!

If you’re a generally active person but still have some unwanted flub, perhaps you should try eating fewer carbs, or perhaps counterintuitive, more dietary fat.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with adding more, natural food to your diet.

But it’s not the ONLY way you ‘have’ to eat!

Is Paleo a True Performance Enhancing Diet?

We are finally getting around to answering part of the original question. One claim the paleo diet makes is that it is guaranteed to increase your physical performance, regardless of your starting point. Sure, if you’re the guy in my previous example that sits on the couch after work and on the weekends and binges on expired Twinkies, absolutely your performance will increase. However, these claims get much, much, much more anecdotal as someon’e starting point of current physical performance increases (prior to switching to a paleo diet).

I know nothing of “galclimber” other than she looks fit and likely climbs a lot given her name and some mutual twitter friends. My guess is that her starting point is not the same as Blimpie the Couch Surfer. Her performance increases are not guaranteed just by switching.

Carbohydrates: Good or Evil?

(For the rest of this post, when I say ‘carbs’, I’m talking about starchy and/or processed carbs, not fruits and veggies.)

People that say they are evil will suggest things like unused carbohydrates will turn into fat (of which, there is no biological process that does this), grains will cause gut health issues, gluten is horrible for everyone for everything, starchy carbohydrates have no purpose in the human body, your hormonal system will fly off the handle, and that the glycemic index actually means something. (I’m over exagerating a little on some of these but only kinda sorta.)

I can agree that we, as a nation, eat too many starchy carbs, but they should not be villainized. One of my most favorite posts that I’ve written is: The Real Reason Carbohydrates Make You Fat. (Definitely read this.) Carbohydrates do have a place in our body, especially anaerobic athletes (such as climbers). Anaerobic athletes primarily rely on the glycotic energy system, utilized by the body for bouts of all-out exertion lasting between 30 sec. and up to 2 min. The fuel source for the glycotic engergy system is, you guessed it, blood glucose, aka sugar aka carbs!

Sure, the human body is the most adaptive organism on the planet, so there are ways of getting around on a keto-diet, but when we’re talking performance, doesn’t it make sense to give the body what it needs in order for it to perform more efficiently? Read: “better”. Depending on “galclimber’s” current performance deficiency, removing additional carbs may make matters even worse!

So, do we need the 400+ grams of sugar a lot of people eat daily? Probably not. But we do need some. And it probably doesn’t matter where it comes from as much as the glycemic index makes you think. The glycemic index was created in a lab, not the human body. The glycemic index was created using isolated carbohydrate sources in a lab, not in a human body where we eat varying amounts fats, proteins, vitamins, and mineral in conjuction with our carbohydrates during our meals. You see the difference?

Paleo Diet and Injury Prevention and/or Resolution

To my knowledge, people touting the paleo diet haven’t made any claims to this, at least not the large publications or popular promoters. In fact, I don’t know of any diets that claim this unless we’re talking about internal health disorders such as gluten and/or lactose intolerances, SCD, or GAPS.

“galclimber’s” original question mentioned specifically “loose scapula and weak wrists”. As far as I know, no diet will change that, but a healthy dose of educated weight training would.

Paleo Diet vs. “Natural Diet”

I don’t know if anyone bigger, smarter, and more popular than me has already coined the phrase “natural diet”, but that’s what I just came up with to describe how try to eat a majority of the time.

Like the paleo diet, I try steer clear from processed foods and excessive carbs as much as I can, but I don’t completely avoid them, demonize them, or even try to dissuade others from eating them. In fact, I rely on carbohydrates to fix my psychological state at times. At others, I can just sense when my body is telling me I need/it’s ok to eat 2 cups of white rice in one sitting.

A majority of my diet consists of meat dietary fat, and rice (one of the perks of dating an Asian chick). I try to eat at least 2-3 different fruits each day. I don’t rely on a lot of pre-mixed seasonings or box food and prefer natural herbs and spices. I rarely see the inner-isles of a grocery store, sticking mainly to the perimeter where real food lies.

Common sense, right?

Metabolic Flexibility

All that being said, I’ve created a metabolically flexible system where I can [physiologically] afford to eat out 2-4 times per week or binge on an entire cake or eat a box of mac ‘n cheese (like I did yesterday) and not encounter any adverse effects. I do, do all of those things nearly every week.

Metabolic Flexibility is the body’s ability to choose the correct, available fuel source given the metabolic stress on your system at any given time, i.e. burns fat while you’re sitting at your desk and burns glucose while exercising. For an extremely more in-depth look at metabolic flexibility you’ll have to take a look at leading researcher and mentor Mike T. Nelson’s website – Extreme Human Performance.

If you’re following a strict paleo approach in which you keep carb intake extremely low, you’re actually making your body inflexible. It will become extremely efficient at burning fat and utilizing what few grams of sugar it can suck out of your food, but if you were to ever fall off the bandwagon, it’s reasonable to believe you would blow up and look chunky for a day or two. You’d then use that experience as justification, proving to yourself and to the world (in your mind) that carbs are evile (said phonetically). Rather, your body is doing its job based on the adaptation YOU forced upon it.

You tell me, what sounds better: trying to adhere to an undefined, yet strict diet regimine that may or may not give you the results you want, or follow a common sense approach that allows you to eat smart when you can and have a lot of freedom to enjoy food you love?

Tips for Trying the Paleo Diet

Just as I, and millions of others, have proven that the paleo diet doesn’t always work on a case-by-case basis, millions more have proven that it does work on a case-by-case basis.

As I have said, the pursuit of a natural diet lifestyle or even a paleo lifestyle is a great thing for everyone, provided you find what works for you. And that’s the key: for you.

So if you want to make a change in your eating habits, I support you. I do not support you flipping a 180 overnight though. These steps must be taken logically and incremently. Otherwise, you’re just setting yourself up for failure.

Gradually reduce the number of carbs you eat during the week: Don’t change anything else. Don’t even try to change the “type” of carbs you eat during the week. Just try to eat less of them. See how you feel. See how you look. If you make a mistake one day, don’t dwell on it. Also, don’t try to make up for it by eating doubly less the next day. Just accept it, and move on with your original plan.

Gradually eat more fruits and veggies: Maybe you can do this one concurrently with the first step, but I still like to keep them separate for people needing to take baby-baby steps. Once you’ve gotten used to a lower intake of starchy carbs, start adding in fruits and veggies. I find a lot wrong with the food guide pyramid (or whatever the heck it is these days), but I do like their generous helping and fruits and veggies. Find the ones you like, prepared the way you like, and stick to ’em. It’ll make the next step much easier.

Gradually change your source of carbohydrates: Until now, I haven’t mentioned anything about giving up your favorite bagel joint or getting rid of your Wonder Bread sammiches. But by this time, you should be noticing some physical changes as well as reduced cravings and/or dependence on carbs anyways. This step is definitely more psychological than physiological. Don’t freak out because I want you to skip your Frosted Flakes in the morning and choose rolled oats and a banana instead. You won’t die if you have to choose rice over pasta once or twice a week. You’re still getting starchy carbs, just not in the same way you were before. And again, just remember, this step is easy because you’ve already mastered the previous two.

Gradually remove additional processed foods and going out when optional or simply because it’s convenient (The Natural Diet): This is the tricky part. This requires cooking ability and the common sense to look at whole meals, rather than just carbohydrates. This is getting rid of the rolled oats and having eggs and avocado for breakfast. This is making educated choices when you do need to go to a restaurant or choosing one that is friendly to your needs. Luckily for you, if you’ve made it this far, you’ve made tremendous strides already. You’re well on your way to making this your lifestyle. And when it’s your lifestyle, you’ll do what you need to figure it out. You’ll hit blogs *cough* mine *cough*, Google, social media, whatever to gain the knowledge you need to keep this going.

And then finally….

PALEO!!11!1!: Remove the rest of starchy carbs from your diet. Increase dietary fats. Increase protein. Increase fruit. Increase vegetables. See what everyone is going crazy over!!

And then when you realize there’s no difference in your appearance or your performance between “the natural diet” and the paleo diet, go back to The Natural. Your body will be more flexible. Your life will be more flexible. And I don’t have to read your stupid posts on social media about how much you want a french fry but you’re worried that it’s going to make you fat overnight.

The end. 🙂

Broomfield, Colorado Pho

I have lived in Broomfield, worked in Boulder, and visited Denver since January 2013. I moved from Minneapolis/St. Paul. Minneapolis/St. Paul has a very large Vietnamese population, and on top of that, I’ve been dating a Vietnamese immigrant for 2.5 years. So now that we have that information, I feel confident in saying that I know good pho when I taste.

Since moving, I’ve tried four different pho restaurants. None of them were that great. In fact, the only “good” pho is the pho that I, or we, made in our apartment. Thank goodness her family taught me how to cook it.

Black Pepper Pho (Boulder)

The soup was good as long as it was just called “soup” and not “pho”. It was quite bland and the broth tasted old. It was missing anise, cinnamon, and cloves to be certain. I needed to add bunch of fish sauce at the table too.

Pho Duy (Broomfield)

Again, this broth was missing stronger anise and clove flavors, but it was better than Black Pepper Pho. I would at least call this “pho”, just not that great. The upside of Pho Duy is that the serving size was ginormous. That said, for the amount of pho they give you, they barely give you enough bean sprouts, basil, and lemon to even notice they’re in there.

Viet’s Restaurant (Denver)

This was by far the most authentic restaurant of the four that I’ve been to so far. The host and server at least spoke Vietnamese. The employees of all the other restaurants were predominantly white. (That’s already a red flag when looking for good Vietnamese food.)

The pho was really quite decent. Good amount of sprouts, basil, lime, and jalapeno’s. Sadly, the soup wasn’t very hot. Not even hot enough to blanch or tenderize the sprouts. According to my Vietnamese lady friend, the temperature of the broth when served is a very very important custom. If it’s not hot, you should send it back. Almost like ordering a steak medium-rare and getting in well-done, here in America.

Vietnamese Cuisine Young’s Cafe (Fort Collins)

There is no way this should have been the best pho I’ve had in Colorado so far. It’s in a “small town” compared to Boulder and Denver. The dining area was way too nice and way too modern. There were no Asian patrons to be seen, just white people everywhere. They didn’t even use Vietnamese names for the menu items. “Pho” was “Vietnamese beef noodle soup”.

“Oh boy, this is going to be horrible.”

NOPE!

So far, it is the best pho I’ve had in Colorado. The broth was a little light on flavor, but much much much better than the other three. It was served hot. It had ample amounts of side veggies.

On top of good pho, we were feeling risky and ordered sweet and sour hot pot too. That wasn’t even offered in all of the Vietnamese restaurants in Minneapolis/St. Paul so I really didn’t have high expectations. Again, we were pleasantly surprised.

Hopefully these reviews help to encourage you to try other pho restaurants before these (except in the case of Young’s Cafe). I will add more restaurants to the list as I experience them.

 

Black Bean Quinoa Salad Recipe

After splurging for the past several weekends (’tis the season, amirite?), I was craving something really healthy. I had some unused quinoa in my cupboard so I hopped on the google machine and searched for some recipes.

I like veggies, I like black beans, and I love simple flavors that mix together and create a party in my mouth. It was a no-brainer to choose this quinoa black bean salad recipe from Savvy Vegetarian.

Here’s the easy-to-read, ad-free, copy/pasta version from the site:

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1 1/2 cups cold water
  • 2 cups (1 can) cooked black beans. If using canned beans, drain and rinse well
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced OR 1 Tbsp minced fresh ginger
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced, OR 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1 carrot, peeled, halfed lengthwise, sliced thin diagonally
  • 1 cup chopped fresh yellow or green beans
  • 1/2 cup red pepper, diced
  • 1/2 cup green pepper, diced
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 medium ripe tomato
  • 1 cup chopped cucumber
  • 1/4 cup sliced olives
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro or basil
  • 1/4 cup chopped scallions

Dressing:

  • 3 Tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice (juice of 1 lime)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • Fresh ground pepper

Directions

  • The quinoa can be made ahead of time and refrigerated
  • Rinse quinoa and drain through a large fine mesh strainer
  • Place in a 2 qt pot with 1 1/2 c. water and 1/2 tsp salt
  • Bring to a full boil, cover tightly, turn down to low, and cook for 15 minutes
  • Remove from heat and allow to sit 5 minutes covered
  • Fluff quinoa gently with a fork and set aside to cool
  • If using canned beans, drain, rinse and set aside to drain
  • Sauté jalapeno, fresh garlic, in 1 tsp olive oil until garlic is slightly browned
  • Add the celery, carrot, green beans, green & red peppers and sauté 5 minutes
  • Add the cumin and coriander, cook and stir 2 minutes
  • Blend dressing ingredients with a whisk or shake in a jar
  • Add quinoa, black beans, sautéed veggies, tomatoes, cucumber, fresh minced cilantro or basil, scallions, to a large bowl
  • Pour on dressing and stir gently to combine. Adjust salt and pepper to taste
  • Serve quinoa salad warm, or cover and chill

I used 3/4 C. of quinoa and 1/4 C. of orange lentils instead. I also used a rice cooker instead of the stove top.

Of course, I’m no hippy so I added scrambled eggs to the equation. They started out on the side and ended up all mixed together.

Let me know if you try it and what you think!

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Minimalist Diet – Eat Like You’re A Poor Climber

It’s 11:00pm on a Thirsty Thursday night. I am thirsty, and I wish I had a beer, but that’s not the case. Instead, I’m sitting here on my couch watching “Core”, getting totally pumped up to go climbing this weekend at Taylors Falls. In fact, I might do some push-ups (which has very little transfer to climbing, lolz) just so I can get totally jakt before Saturday. Right?

Anyways, most of these guys are really lean. It’s not so much the climbing that makes climbers lean. In fact, climbing is not that metabollically challenging. The thing that makes most of these guys (and gals) so lean is that they’re dirt poor. Climbers featured in DVD’s are some of the best in the world, and more than a handful of them are very open about living out of vans, sleeping on random couches, or living in leftover Katrina trailers. If they can’t afford housing (though, I realize that it is a lifestyle choice for most of them), I can only assume they aren’t eating 3,000 calories/day. I don’t know any high-level climbers personally, so I can’t say for sure, but I’m willing to be they’re lucky if they get 2 really good meals. And, climbers are known to be pretty hippy so those two meals are probably pretty vegan or vegetarian. Doesn’t do much for carrying around extra belly fat….if that’s your goal.

Before I forget, check out the trailer for “Core”. It has some of the best cinematography I’ve seen in a climbing movie. It has some of the worst cinematography I’ve seen in a climbing movie.

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Fort Collins, Colorado Pho

I have lived in Broomfield, worked in Boulder, and visited Denver since January 2013. I moved from Minneapolis/St. Paul. Minneapolis/St. Paul has a very large Vietnamese population, and on top of that, I’ve been dating a Vietnamese immigrant for 2.5 years. So now that we have that information, I feel confident in saying that I know good pho when I taste.

Since moving, I’ve tried four different pho restaurants. None of them were that great. In fact, the only “good” pho is the pho that I, or we, made in our apartment. Thank goodness her family taught me how to cook it.

Black Pepper Pho (Boulder)

The soup was good as long as it was just called “soup” and not “pho”. It was quite bland and the broth tasted old. It was missing anise, cinnamon, and cloves to be certain. I needed to add bunch of fish sauce at the table too.


Pho Duy (Broomfield)

Again, this broth was missing stronger anise and clove flavors, but it was better than Black Pepper Pho. I would at least call this “pho”, just not that great. The upside of Pho Duy is that the serving size was ginormous. That said, for the amount of pho they give you, they barely give you enough bean sprouts, basil, and lemon to even notice they’re in there.


Viet’s Restaurant (Denver)

This was by far the most authentic restaurant of the four that I’ve been to so far. The host and server at least spoke Vietnamese. The employees of all the other restaurants were predominantly white. (That’s already a red flag when looking for good Vietnamese food.)


The pho was really quite decent. Good amount of sprouts, basil, lime, and jalapeno’s. Sadly, the soup wasn’t very hot. Not even hot enough to blanch or tenderize the sprouts. According to my Vietnamese lady friend, the temperature of the broth when served is a very very important custom. If it’s not hot, you should send it back. Almost like ordering a steak medium-rare and getting in well-done, here in America.


Vietnamese Cuisine Young’s Cafe (Fort Collins)

There is no way this should have been the best pho I’ve had in Colorado so far. It’s in a “small town” compared to Boulder and Denver. The dining area was way too nice and way too modern. There were no Asian patrons to be seen, just white people everywhere. They didn’t even use Vietnamese names for the menu items. “Pho” was “Vietnamese beef noodle soup”.


“Oh boy, this is going to be horrible.”


NOPE!


So far, it is the best pho I’ve had in Colorado. The broth was a little light on flavor, but much much much better than the other three. It was served hot. It had ample amounts of side veggies.


On top of good pho, we were feeling risky and ordered sweet and sour hot pot too. That wasn’t even offered in all of the Vietnamese restaurants in Minneapolis/St. Paul so I really didn’t have high expectations. Again, we were pleasantly surprised.


Hopefully these reviews help to encourage you to try other pho restaurants before these (except in the case of Young’s Cafe). I will add more restaurants to the list as I experience them.

 

My Top 3 Favorite Supplements

I’ve written about this before (I think), but I really cannot stress how important and how much I love these 3. Forget what the multi-billion dollar (!!!) supplement industry tells you, I feel strongly enough to say that these are the only 3 supplements you actually need (provided you are an otherwise healthy individual). They are highly affordable, and their claims are backed by honest to goodness scientific research.

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Sometimes I Really Want to be Fat

No. Really. I do.

I love the act of eating. I love food of all kinds. This includes junk food. All different types of junk food. I like sweets. I like salty stuff. I like chocolate. I like grease. I like gravy. I like it all.

I wish I could bring in a box of donuts every day. I wish I could go home after work and eat a bag of chips with a frozen pizza on the side. For dessert, I’d eat a box of Cinnamon Toast Crunch and cheesecake on a stick.

And you know what? I do just that from time to time. And you know what? I’m still lean. You know why? Moderation.

No, eating a whole bag of chips is not moderate. Neither is a baker’s dozen donuts. But those things are just one discrete instance in time. The overall trend of my diet (in terms of calories), over time, is always level or pointing downward. Therefore, I binge in moderation. I also “starve” myself in moderation. In the end, I get to be as fat as I can possibly stand….a couple times a month.

No one likes being average, but the more I learn about nutrition, the more I learn little intricacies and “optimal”, the more I realize that if you take a gigantic step back from all of it, it all just boils down to this:

Everything in moderation….including moderation. (No, I did not come up with that quote, but I don’t remember who did.)

Now, please excuse me; I need to go find my bag of chocolate chips.

** UPDATE!! Tonight (9/15/2011) I had 5 chocolate chip cookies and some venison steak for supper. And beer.