Day #004 – Glowing Crosses, Foot Pain Reduced, and a Weight Bench

Exciting news; my weight bench has arrived!  But as I explained in yesterday’s post, I’ve been benched.  Until my foot has been pain free for a few days, I’m not allowed to work out.  So it’ll just sit there, looking nice and shiny in the corner of my dining room, while my stupid body continues to heal.

Henry finished Vacation Bible School tonight.  He had a blast this week, and he got this cool cross necklace that is made of glowsticks.  I think he thinks it’s a glow-in-the-dark cross, so I’m not sure how happy he’ll be about it in the morning when it has completely lost its juice.  (And this kid, who has the most handsome smile when he’s laughing or having a good time, just can’t do anything but cheese when the camera comes out.)

I know that I should be eating better foods, especially when I can’t even exercise to help offset any bad choices, but I am craving absolute garbage right now.  We need to stop buying it; those toasted marshmallows were DELICIOUS, but I’m not sure if they were actually worth five points.

Part of my cravings for processed, carby food is also my injury.  I need to tough through it.  Growing pains.  Progress not perfection.  And other such cliches.


I actually slept last night!  I still have a little foot pain when lying down, but it is greatly reduced.  I even had the great idea, “I can exercise by Saturday night!”  However, I have ultimately decided to wait until Monday.  My foot hurt so bad I couldn’t sleep; I’m not going to risk a reinjury right away, so a weekend of healing time should be good for me.

As I mentioned earlier in this post, my weight bench has arrived and Tina and I put it up this morning.  It was super easy; I’ll review it proper when we’ve had a few weeks of use behind us.  For now, it’ll just sit there and wait for Monday night when we start the StrongLifts program!


We also worked our way a bit more through our Universal Yums box.  Every month, we get a box of snacks from some different country.  This month, it was Mexico, and while this hasn’t been our favorite month, it has still had some tasty food in it.  Today, we tried a snack made of peanuts and sugar called De La Rosa Mazapan.  To my surprise, this was in Weight Watchers eTools, so I was actually able to track it!

I’m still working on trying to clean up my eating.  I have a long way to go.  I dipped into my weekly points today, but I have plenty left for the weekend.  I really want to make a push to eat well this weekend so I can see a loss on Monday at the scale.


Points (78/42) 78
Shrimp and veggie pasta (11) 67
Merci chocolate (10) 57
Nectarine (0) 57
Toasted marshmallows (5) 52
Triscuits (5) 47
Tuna salad with boiled egg (6) 41
Leftover Stovetop Stuffing (3) 38
Thick cut bacon BLT on homemade bread (17) 21
2 chicken fajita burritos (12) 9
Open-faced bologna and cheese sandwich (11) -2
Hard boiled egg with balsamic drizzle (2) -4
Strawberries (0) -4
De la roza mazapan (3) -7


Day #003 – Stupid Feet

I am babying my foot still.  I think it’s better, but I’m not willing to risk it, so no exercise today.  I’d actually like to be able to sleep tonight.  It’s the strangest pain; I’ll readily admit to being a huge baby when it comes to pain (on account of, y’know, being a man), but the issue with this is also that I don’t know WHAT caused the pain.  I’m assuming it was my sneakers, but the truth is, I just don’t know.  And that is what bothers me about it.  If I had twisted my ankle, it’d be one thing, but this just kind of appeared.

I keep thinking I may want to go to urgent care in the morning, but I don’t think this is an injury that a general practitioner can help with.  I think this would probably require a podiatrist, at best, and even then, I’m not sure what can be done beyond rest.  I’ll probably go on Monday if it still hurts.

One thing that I do feel comfortable saying is that I need to eat better.  Now that I know my diet is going out into the world, I’m aware of how much junk I eat.  I need to start eating less processed food and WAY more vegetables.


Okay, update on the foot situation.   The previous few paragraphs were written last night; the following is written this afternoon.

I didn’t fall asleep until 5:30 a.m., and this was after trying pretty consistently from about 3 a.m. on.  Every time I would lay down, my food would just ache.

I took a ZZZquil at 5:30, and even though I woke up about every hour until 11:30 to walk around the bedroom to get the foot pain a brief reprieve, I managed to sleep about six hours.  At that point, tired of this stupid pain, I decided to go to urgent care.  (It’s not really; it’s a walk-in clinic at Graves Gilbert which is I where we all go for our medical needs.)

Anyway, I was really pleased with how quickly I was seen.  Within 20 minutes, I was having my foot palpated by a doctor.  I took an X-ray, and the X-ray showed nothing.  This is good; I was a little afraid that perhaps I had fractured my foot and not realized it.

On the unpleasant side of this, the X-ray showed nothing.  This probably is just tendonitis or something similar.  If it still hurts in 10 days, I’m supposed to go back, and for now, I take Naproxen and Extra Strength Tylenol for the pain.  And unfortunately, no exercise at all.  So stupid Part III of the Masked Rider/Power Ranger crossover will have to wait.

I can still lose weight this week.  After all, weight loss is like 95% diet and 5% exercise.  I am looking at the food I’ve eaten over the last day, and it’s not that great.  Even though I followed my points exactly, I ate a lot of processed junk.  I can do better.


Points (78/42) 78
Habanero potato chips (5) 73
Chicken and havarti sandwich (15) 58
Popcorn (5) 53
Omelette with turkey sausage and cheese (9) 44
Steel cut oatmeal with brown sugar (7) 37
Popcorn (10) 27
Bologna and cheddar cheese (6) 21
Bologna sandwich (13) 8
Popcorn (5) 3
Peach (0) 3
Tomato juice (3) 0


Day #002 – Community Band, Foot Pain, and Jellybeans

Tina has community band on Tuesday night, and Henry is in Vacation Bible School.  Since I don’t really have anything to do in-between, I decided to go to campus and work on an application I need to fill out for a program I am volunteering to participate in.

I exercised tonight, but I’m not sure that was the smartest decision.  My foot has been aching, but in a very odd way.  It doesn’t hurt to put pressure on it, which is why I exercised.  It felt fine the entire time.  However, when I was lying in bed last night, it was really painful.  I was up about every hour, at least once, to walk around the bedroom.  That alleviated the pain.  Until I laid back down.

I’m going to baby my foot today, and if I have another sleepless night, I’m going to the doctor tomorrow.  I’ve been wearing some really crappy sneakers, and I have new ones that I just started using (as in, I started using them after my foot started hurting today).  I wonder if my poor sneakers are what has finally caused this very odd, unfamiliar pain.

I made the mistake of googling my symptoms, and I’m afraid it appears that I may have foot cancer coupled with podiatric hepatitis.  That sucks.  Hope I get better.

In all seriousness, one of the things that I read about that can cause foot pain that hurts only when lying down is diabetic neuropathy.  Back when I was at 434, my blood sugar ran around 110-120, which is pre-diabetic.  It occurred to me… what if I am now full-blown diabetic and this is the first symptom?  Rather than stress needlessly about it, I checked my blood sugar this morning.  (I got a glucose monitor when I learned I was pre-diabetic.)  The results?  93!  I’m pleased with that.  It’s not as good as I would like, but anything under 100 is a normal fasting glucose.  So hopefully I can successfully self-eliminate diabetic neuropathy as the source of my foot pain.

Today was one of those days where I had to go to work (if you’re new to reading my blog, I’m a professor and I have summers off).  This lunch was catered, and I feel that I did a pretty good job of sticking to my points, even if I didn’t eat the best food.  (As in quality – the food itself was delicious, even those heart-shaped jelly beans that ate up five of my points.)

After an entire day of being on my feet but at least wearing good shoes, my right foot is still a little achy.  Again, however, it only hurt when I was lying down, so we’ll see how I feel tonight.  Fingers crossed.

And hey, two days down!  I actually blogged two days in a row!


Points (78/42) 78
Chicken, peppers, and onions fajita burritos (16) 62
Banana (0) 62
White cheddar mac ‘n cheese, diced tomatoes, and ground beef (14) 48
Dark chocolate (6) 42
Slice of roast beef and Havarti cheese (3) 39
Peach (0) 39
Jelly beans (5) 34
Sprite (9) 25
Chicken casserole (10) 15
Roasted veggies (1) 14
Chess bar (8) 6
Roll (4) 2
Fruit salad (0) 2

My exercise today was the treadmill at 3.0 mph and 5 degree incline for 20 minutes to Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Season 3 episode “A Friend in Need, Part II.”  Stupid Masked Rider.  I’ll be glad when this three parter is over.

Day #001 – Daily Blogging 101

I’m trying to resurrect this weight loss blog, for one very simple reason.

I’m actually losing weight now!  I started 2017 at a high weight of 434.0, and today, I weighed in at 402.8.  More on that in a minute.

I’ve tried the daily blogging thing before, and I’ve never stuck with it.  In the past, I’ve struggled with daily blogging because it isn’t fun to write a weight loss blog when you not only don’t lose weight, you don’t even stick to the diet.  And plus, there is the whole issue of I don’t want my daily life just out there, updating it live every day.  I’d rather live my life, you know?

However, there is a happy medium.  I am going to try and at least post daily my food and exercise, and I’ll only share those things that I am okay being fully public.  There may be days (even weeks) where I won’t post for whatever reason, but for the next week, I’m going to try this.

I’m struggling with a way to actually track my food.  I don’t like using the mobile app that Weight Watchers gives us, and writing in a notebook is a little bit of a hassle.  So…  I’m going to try and blog this week and see how it goes.  During the week, I’m keeping this in a Google Drive document, so that anywhere I am, I can quickly log in, track my food, and move along.  No notebook to carry, no app to mess with; hopefully, this will be quick and easy.

As it is, I am currently at 78 points a day and I have 42 weekly points.  At the bottom of each entry (or the entire entry if I have no commentary) will be a table where I list everything I ate that day.  I’ll also include my exercise.

I’ll be perfectly honest about that, too.  My exercise game is weak at the moment.  But y’know, when you are a super morbidly obese man with bad knees and… oh, I don’t know, 220 more pounds to lose, you’re very limited in what you can do.  Right now, my workout consists exclusively of light treadmill work.  I’m not trying to kill myself.  I am going to incorporate weight work later this summer, but I’ll talk more about that in coming days.

I’ll go ahead and apologize for any wonky verb tenses.  I’ll be adding to this document as the week goes, and there may be times I refer to something in the future tense in one paragraph and then the past tense the next.  I’ll try to be mindful when I edit this before I blog about it.

So, let me share the significance of today’s weigh-in.  When I first began losing weight years ago, my starting weight was 402.8.  I lost all the way down to around 255, I think, but then I stopped, and over the next several years, I ballooned up to 434.  Well, I’m back to 402.8.  It almost seems like a perfect time to start blogging again.

Let me also talk quickly about my exercise.  I have a weight bench ordered, and as soon as it is here, I’m going to start StrongLifts, which I’ll share more about when that actually begins.

For now, I’m just doing cardio.  Every day, I do 20 minutes of treadmill walking to an episode of the Power Rangers.  I’ve finished the first two seasons.  Today is the first episode of Season 3.  At my weight, I’m just trying to increase my cardio endurance.  My knees cannot handle running, so I set my treadmill to 3.0 miles per hour and I slowly up my incline.  This week, I’m at five degrees.  My treadmill goes up to 15, but I’m going to work my way up to that.


Henry started Vacation Bible School tonight, which means we now have a four-year-old who knows how to play Simon Says.

We also spent some time today getting our dining room ready for my weight bench, which should be here on Friday.  (The dress form is holding Tina’s goal dress.)

I am also now realizing that I should spend a little bit of time explaining how I follow Weight Watchers.  I like to eat late at night, and since the research is pretty clear on the fact that calories are what matter, now the time of day you eat, I start my points at dinner and end them the next day at dinner.  It’s a little unorthodox, but it definitely works for me.  If I’m low on points, I find it much easier to resist snacking in the day than late at night.

Nothing really happened today, beyond me spending a little more time working on my old weights.  I cleaned up my Olympic bar, my 25 pound plates, and my 2.5 pound plates.  They were in the garage, so they aren’t in the greatest of shape.  I want to paint them, and I was initially thinking black, but Rustoleum has a nice metallic set of paint colors, so they made end up bronze or copper. We’ll see.

Today was largely uneventful.  I’m a professor who works on a nine month contract (mostly), so I have summers mostly off.  I often go in to work one or two days, but by and large, I’m working from home.  I still have things to do, and part of what I spent today working on were my promotion materials which are due July 3rd.  Fun times.  (But yay for employment that only makes me work roughly nine months a year!  Granted, I pull 50-60 hour weeks during those nine months, but I’ll still take it.)


Points (78/42) 78
Chicken, cheese, and asparagus (6) 72
Stove top sage stuffing (3) 69
Mini s’mores bagel with marshmallows (5) 64
Dark chocolate, 85% cacao (4) 60
Grapes (0) 60
Turkey sausage, cheddar, and egg breakfast burrito (11) 49
Cherries (0) 49
Homemade full-fat yogurt with blueberries (8) 41
Club sandwich on homemade bread (18) 23

I had twenty-three points left over today, which is a lot, but I didn’t need to eat anything else.  That’s frequently what happens when I eat a pretty clean dinner.  Most days aren’t like this.

My exercise today was 20 minutes on the treadmill at 3.0 mph and 5 degree incline while watching the season 3 opener of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, the terrible not-really-a-spin-off episode “A Friend in Need, Part 1,” where the Power Rangers went to Edenoi to visit Masked Rider for, y’know, reasons.  I remember watching this when it first aired, and I thought, “Oh, I’ll have to watch Masked Rider since they’re set in the same universe.”  Except they aren’t.  Neither Power Rangers nor Masked Rider ever referenced each other again.  In fact, the events of Power Rangers is what led Masked Rider to come to Earth in Part III, until you watch Masked Rider, and that jerkwad never even mentions the Power Rangers.  Well who lasted one season, and who is still on the air, going strong after 24 years?  Huh?  Suck it, Masked Rider!

Geeze.  Did this episode give me PTSD?  It seems I’m a little bothered by this.

Christmas at Disney

Ordinarily I would space these posts out, but since we went at Christmas, I feel a need to get our vacation photos posted BEFORE Christmas.  I had plans to devote a day to each park, but I’ve been enjoying the time off, hanging out with my family, taking a break from school work and work work, and this has slipped to the end of my list.

However, today is Christmas Eve, so there’s still time!

I’ll start off with telling you all about Hollywood Studios!  We only spent one night here, largely because it was SO crowded due to this being the last year of the Osbourne Family Lights.  Gotta be honest – the lights were amazing, but they weren’t “drop everything and go to this park only” amazing.







We also enjoyed a great dinner with Minnie at Hollywood and Vine.  They started our meal off with the richest hot chocolate I think I’ve ever had!






This is probably one of my favorite photos ever of my family!


Epcot is next on our list.  Epcot is probably our favorite park AFTER Magic Kingdom.  (Even though my favorite ride, Tower of Terror, is at Hollywood Studios.)









Not a ton of photos here.  That’s one thing I tried to be a little more aware of on this vacation.  I wanted to enjoy vacation without being behind the camera.  We did do the Photo Pass, but I haven’t downloaded those photos yet.  Henry’s favorite two things at Disney are “space” (Spaceship Earth, a.k.a. the big golf ball) and riding the Nemo ride.  We rode Nemo at least ten times.  My favorite part is at the end, when they project images of Nemo on the actual aquariums located in the ride.  For the last little bit of the Nemo ride, they sing the song “Big Blue World,” and the Starfish at the end (the same Starfish from Finding Nemo, whose name escapes me at the moment) has a great commentary.  My favorite thing she says is, “Take me with you!  I mean, it’s a great song but it just never ends!”

And last but certainly not least, Magic Kingdom, including some pictures of the Very Merry Christmas Party!  One of my favorite things about the party is that it snowed on Main Street during the parade, which is pretty awesome.  Given that it was an unseasonably warm Orlando and the temperature was about 80 degrees.  (The snow is soap foam, I think.)










And of course, we also have to ride Dumbo, a classic ride.  (Although Henry likes the playland in the waiting area for Dumbo even more than the actual ride.)



The castle after Elsa covered it with ice, as well as a few firework shots.




A Tomorrowland Christmas Party!  It was surprisingly fun!


We decided to get the Kitchen Sink Ice Cream Sundae.  The bowl will be one of the many Disney decorations in our kitchen.



The Barnstormer, a legitimate roller coaster for little guys (35 inches and taller) that is actually a lot of fun!




These new few pictures are of food.  Ohana is a great restaurant at the Polynesian Resort.  It is, by far, my favorite food in all of Disney.  It’s a buffet served Family Style, and… man, I could eat these shrimp forever.




And lastly, Chef Mickey’s!





Oh Disney.  I can’t wait to go back!  We love it there.  We’re not going back until we have some significant debt paid off, but we will definitely be back!

Christmas at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

A few days ago, Tina, Henry, and I got back from a wonderful trip to Walt Disney World!  Tina and I decided to take the family to Disney this year as our Christmas gift.  (Please note: we would not have spent this much on the family otherwise for Christmas.  This was both a splurge and a gift for me completing my doctoral coursework.)

We never planned to spend even a second at Animal Kingdom.  Not gonna lie – it is my least favorite park by a huge factor.  It just doesn’t offer much to me that a zoo doesn’t also offer, and I’d rather spend my valuable Disney time at a better park.

However, as soon as we left the driveway at 3 a.m. on our way to Disney, Henry told us he wanted to see baby animals.

For this reason, our very first stop when we finally got to Disney was at Animal Kingdom.  The kid loves animals, so we decided to go first thing. 

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They also have a fun animal-themed tree out at Christmas.

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And of course, the iconic Tree of Life that the entire park is based around.

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We had Chef Mickey’s reservations for that morning, but we were able to move that dining experience later into the trip, so we ate breakfast at Tusker House!

Tusker House is a fun character dining, where you get to see Mickey, Donald, Daisy, and Goofy in Safari gear while eating a great breakfast buffet.  The kid LOVES his Disney characters, so this was a great way to start the trip.





The food there was also quite good, with some very standard American breakfast staples and some with a slight African twist.  One of the highlights of the meal is Pog juice, which is pineapple, orange, and gauva.  Delicious!

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And it’s just not a trip to Disney without at least one (or six) Mickey waffles!

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We did the Kilimanjaro Safari, which gave Henry his animal fix.  We also rode a few rides, all of which were in DinoLand.  (The kid is a huge fan of dinosaurs.  So am I, honestly.  Who doesn’t love dinosaurs?!)


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I did not get to ride Expedition Everest, which is my favorite ride at Animal Kingdom (and probably top 3 for all of Disney World), but no big deal.  We were excited to get back to the room to get our nap in so we could go to Magic Kingdom for the Very Merry Christmas Party!  (Stay tuned – I’ll talk about it here on Christmas Eve!)

The Ranger Project

Welcome to The Ranger Project!

I’ve started and stopped, resurrected and forgotten, and just let this blog sit here and collect dust more times than I can count.

Or maybe eight times.  I can count to eight.

Either way, I wanted to put up this first post because I am going to try again.  Now that my school work is over (other than that pesky dissertation – more on that in a moment), I feel I can devote a few minutes a day to keeping this blog alive.

This blog is going to document a lot of things about my life.  You’ll learn a lot about me and my family and some of the things we want to accomplish.  I’ll be honest – the theme of this blog may be a bit different at times, so I completely understand if this isn’t your cup of tea.  On the other hand, if you like random things, this might be right up your alley!

RainTree Productions

This one refers specifically to my family life.  We have a fairly inactive YouTube Channel called RainTree Productions, so named because I have both Cherokee and Shawnee blood in my family tree and one of my closest Indian relatives had the last name Raintree.  We just thought it had a nice ring for our videos.

I’ll periodically post videos about our lives, what we do, what we like, our plans, et cetera. 



In the last year and a half, we have become huge Disney fanatics.  It happened when we took our son to Walt Disney World in May 2014 and he had a very literal and exciting language bump.  Our son is pretty much on track now, but he does have a bit of an articulation issue with his speech, and we discovered that every time he goes to Disney, he seems to have a bit of a speech explosion when he returns.  (It could potentially be not connected at all, but we cannot deny that we all have a great time at Disney World.)

We just got back a few days ago.  Seriously.  We love the place.

I’m not saying every vacation we ever take will be at Disney World, but we do want to get our debt paid off we can join the Disney Vacation Club and go once a year.

We have plans to do our kitchen in a Disney theme.  I’ll probably post about Disney once a month or so, just to keep the magic alive.

Disney is one of those things that people either love or hate.  Perhaps not surprisingly, I’ve found that a lot of people who hate Disney haven’t even gone.

All I can say is this – Walt Disney World truly is a magical place for my family, and I see us going many, many times for the rest of our lives.


Speaking of Disney and wanting to join the Disney Vacation Club, we have a fair amount of debt.  Nothing crippling, but more than I’d like, for sure.  Tina and I both have healthy student loan debt and we want to see this gone.  I’ll periodically post about how we’re living as frugal as we can (90% of the time, anyway – we do still go to Disney sometimes) to get this debt paid down quicker.

People like Dave Ramsey and Suze Orman say that we should live like paupers to get our debt paid off.  I’m not entirely sure that’s smart.  I’d rather take a little longer to pay off our debt and actually enjoy my life.

Still, that doesn’t mean I’m not a big fan of avoiding needless expenses.  We don’t really eat out.  (We do get pizza every Monday night, but that’s because a local pizza parlor has a special with half-off pizza once a week.  We can get a thin crust cheese pizza for $5.29 that feeds all of us.  That seems like a decent deal, and it also has the added benefit of keeping us on track with avoiding eating out.)  I try to stretch the grocery budget as best I can.  We’re frugal, not tight.  Oh, and I’ve also found some painless ways to make a little money on the side, too, which I’ll talk about from time to time.


We love food!  I love to cook, and I’m going to share my recipes and my interpretations of recipes on occasion.  We also have an Instant Pot which we love.  Granted, it is now the HOT kitchen appliance of the moment, but if you’ve ever used one, you’ll understand why.  It really is a great appliance.  One of my first recipes is going to be for my super-easy roast beef in the Instant Pot.

Weight Loss

I’m fat.  I’ve been fat for a long time.  I’ll write a longer blog post in the coming days about my weight loss efforts, but I’m going to weigh-in every Friday in 2016, starting with New Year’s Day.  I weigh over 400 pounds right now (around 415, last I checked), and I’m tired of being fat and unhealthy.

While I do plan for this blog to be a positive place, I may occasionally rail on the disturbing trend that now exists for some people to glorify obesity and promote bad health.  There are people out there (with audiences, sadly) who claim that it is impossible to lose weight (it’s not), that medical research says obesity is healthier than being normal weight (it’s laughably not), and that if we just eat ‘til we’re full our weight will settle where it’s supposed to (yet some who have made this claim have packed on the pounds since finding Health at Every Size).

So again, most of my weight loss talk will be about myself, but when studies come out that some of the elite trained researchers out there wildly misinterpret to suit their own needs, I’ll probably have to talk about it here.

The Ranger Project

So, why is this blog named what it is named?  Because I want to be a Power Ranger!

Seriously.  I want to lose weight so that I can get a movie suit and cosplay as the Blue Ranger.


And I’m not doing it fat.

I hope you’ll stick with me.  I think this might be an interesting journey.

Whoops – I ate too much at snack time…

Tina and I are both doing the Fit Girl diet, Tina by the book and me slightly modifying it by incorporating more calories.  Tina is eating 1450 calories a day; since I’m a guy, I add about 500 extra calories.

Well, I messed up.  Willpower weakened this afternoon at work, and my eating plans for the day derailed.

Fortunately, they did not derail so much that they cannot be overcorrected.  Rather than eat one 140 calorie bag of chips, I ate three.

Ahem.  That’s too many.  So, I’m making up for that by eliminating the extra serving of protein I eat at dinner.

Is this the healthiest decision I could have made today?  Not by a long shot.  But I stuck to my diet.  Lose the battle, win the war.  That’s what I’m going for here.  And in strict calorie terms, I still won this battle.

Breakfast – frozen homemade ham and cheese burrito

Lunch – Almond butter and jelly sandwich, bag of chips

Mid-afternoon – 2 more bags of chips

Dinner – pumpkin lasagna rolls, apple

After-dinner snack – 1 hard-boiled egg, 60 calorie square of dark chocolate

We got this.

Oh, and the best part?  I lost seven pounds last week.

November 2, 2015

Weight: 416

Change from Last Week: –7.0 pounds

Change from All-Time Highest: –14.0 pounds

I feel like my week could have been better had I not splurged too much on my extra food at dinner.  I’m going to do my best to do better this week.

What I Ate Today

I don’t plan to do these regularly (I don’t think), but I will do them from time-to-time.  Maybe eventually these will morph into “A Day in the Life” style posts, but for now, this is what I ate today.  I’m pretty pleased with how on-track I’ve been since Tina has become a Fit Girl and is following their diet so religiously.  It just makes it easier for us to both eat better when we are both 100% bought in!

Before Church – 1 frozen, homemade, ham, egg, and cheese burrito (We made a big batch sometime ago and I’m working my way through them.)

After Church – spinach wrap chicken fajitas (leftovers from last night) with cheese and sour cream

Mid-afternoon – 1 piece of Halloween candy (a little Kit Kat – probably not worth it)

Dinner – Honey srirachi chicken and spinach pita pizza (we’ll post a recipe sometime – these are so amazingly good!)

After-dinner snack – 2 doughettes (roughly 90 calories each – made of oats, almond butter, and dark chocolate), 1 square of dark chocolate, 1 apple

I am super pleased with my diet today!  I could have eaten more veggies, but overall, a major improvement.

Our biggest victory?  Tina and I haven’t eaten out in over a week.  That is huge, both for our health and our debt.

And we also recorded a video for RainTree Productions today.

Happy Halloween, Fit Girls, and a New (sort of) YouTube Channel

I know Saturdays are where blog posts go to die, but given that very few people currently subscribe to my feed, I’m not too worried about that.

In any event, Happy Halloween!


We are going as Dr. Sherman, Darla, and Nemo from Finding Nemo this year.  We always try to do a family costume (at least until said point when Henry starts dictating what he wears.)


We’ve also recently started a YouTube Channel.  It’s at the same location as my old YouTube channel (, but we’re going to rebrand a bit.  We’re calling the whole thing RainTree Productions.  I have a surprising amount of Native American blood for somebody who is so shockingly white, and Raintree is the last name of one of my Cherokee ancestors on my mother’s side of the family.  We also plan to have subchannels, including one called The Ranger Project, where I do a video series describing our weight loss efforts.  Every Monday, we hope to post a video to that channel.

Last night, we made a video of our pumpkin carving efforts.  We also plan to do some general day-in-the-life type videos, both to share a window into our lives AND to have more videos of us to enjoy in the future.

And of weight loss efforts, it’s actually going great!  Tina started a diet called Fit Girls, and I’m doing a slightly modified (i.e. – more calories for my increased size) version.  Our first weigh-in is on Monday, but I fully expect to see at least a six pound loss this week.  Exercise is also going well.  I have some far-off, way-off, so-far-off-we-may-have-flying-cars plans to do an IronMan, but I’ll talk about that more in the future.  All I have to say right now is this – the idea of actually possibly finishing an IronMan is very motivational to me as I do my extremely low-level treadmill workouts right now.  (And I also expect to be at goal weight when I do this Ironman, so it truly is a way down the road.)

Okay, more to come.  Stick with us!  We’ve truly turned this into a family effort and I’m feeling exciting about everything the future holds!