Sammy Sosa’s HR total from 1998

As all 3 readers of my blog are aware, this past summer (starting on June 24, or on July 1, depending of how the date is calculated), I embarked on a personal journey of a reboot of my nutritional intake. You can go to the top of this blog to read past entries, if you are unaware of the approach that I took.

In private conversations, I referred to what I was doing as “this crazy thing I’m doing.” Such language scared my mother to no end, until she watched the documentary that kick-started my journey, Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead. After she finally watched it, she understood the context of that crazy thing I did. I guess I should refrain from giving such mixed messages. As I was describing what I was doing as crazy, I believed it was what I must have been doing, which made it anything but crazy.

At any rate, I began eating sensibly on June 24, as a preparation for a juice fast. As it worked out, my juice fast continued from July 1 through August 30, a full 60 days, as was featured in the documentary. Joe Cross, featured in the documentary has a website and a community, titled Reboot with Joe. As I began my juice fast, I was aware that his website features less radical reboots, which include fresh vegetable/fruit juices, but also solid food. Though I had not arrived in the 300 lbs+ neighborhood (like Joe Cross), I was heavy enough to make myself sick of myself, and believed I needed to make a radical, call it crazy approach to change things.

When I started the fast, I didn’t really know how long I would do it. I started with an initial, in my mind goal of at least 10 days. If at the end of 10 days I wanted to continue, it would be at least 5 more. If I made it to 15 days, and wanted to continue, I planned to arrive at 30 days. If I made it to 30 days, and wanted to continue, I planned to go another 30, which is what I in fact did.

Friends who were aware of what I was doing responded with things like, “I could never do that.” My inner response to such statements was something like, “YOU don’t NEED to do something like this!” I went through the 60 days believing that what I was doing was what I needed to do. In reality, it was easy.

As I ended the 60 days, I went back to eating food. I still make and drink fresh juices, and enjoy them. I was aware that the period from June 24 through August 30, though many people said they could never do such a thing, was the easy part of my reboot. The hard part would be what was going to happen after that. You see, I have probably lost 500 pounds in yo-yo fashion. When I was younger, I would get serious about my weight issues, and could drop pounds so fast it would make the women in my life envious. In more recent years, I was aware that the pounds were getting harder and harder to shed, and when I would stop my dieting, the pounds would come back so much more quickly than they used to come. Musing along this situation, making a comparison to the news topic of the week, the US debt ceiling, my weight ceiling was reaching ever higher. I decided that I had to do something radical to lower that ceiling. Perhaps politicians in Washington DC could learn something from me, as we need to do something more radical than what has ever been done, to address our national debt issues.

This post really is to let my 3 readers know what has happened since August 30, when I resumed eating. At the end of my 60 day juice fast, I had dropped 63 pounds since June 24.

I began eating solid food rather judiciously, probably taking up to 4-5 days to get to the volume of food I have been eating for the past month or so. My weight went up slightly, but dropped back down, stabilizing at pretty much my ending weight. I continue to weigh myself (and record the weight) nearly every day, as I don’t want to slip back into old patterns. Until a week ago or so, I was fluctuating at the same weight where I ended my juice fast, and called that good. It has now been 47 days since I resumed eating. I follow Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s nutritarian diet approach, consuming mainly a plant-based diet, with lots of veggies, less fruit than veggies, not a small amount of legumes, nuts and seeds, even less grains, and a minimal amount of meat and dairy. I have had trace amounts of meat only, not really volitionally eating meat at all. Small amounts of meat would include trace amounts in the soup at Kinnaree Thai Restaurant, trace amount of ham in a vegetable plate meal at Cracker Barrel in September, when I ordered pinto beans, and upon consumption realized it had some ham in it, and just the other night, when I had some faux Olive Garden style minestrone soup, and found trace amounts of ground beef in it. I have volitionally eaten some cheese (very small amount) and have consumed 6 eggs, though my daughter thinks it is hilarious when I have confessed to having eaten 6 eggs.

Ready for the drumroll?  The weight on the scale today was at an all time low (for 2013, anyway), down 66 pounds since June 24, (Sammy Sosa’s juiced HR total from 1998)  1. I can almost hear Aussie Joe Cross say, “Good on you, Mate!”


  1. I can already imagine Bill Shewmaker, Gary Hardy, and other fellow Cub fans complain that Sammy never tested positive for PEDs, but I would ask them if deep down in their heart of hearts they believe he was innocent

2 Months Ago I Started Eating Sensibly: One Week Later I Started my Juice Fast

June 24th was the last time I drank any kind of soda pop. I only did it that day because I had some Diet Dr. Pepper in the refrigerator in my office. I enjoyed drinking it that day, but I really haven’t missed not drinking it. I suppose the first couple days, I was having caffeine withdrawals, and didn’t feel all that bad.

Right now, I am on Day 55 of my 60-Day Juice Fast. I feel well. 25 days ago, the numbers from my blood work showed that I was healthier than I have been for a long time. I think I will have more blood work done in about 2.5 weeks, and we’ll be able to compare progress since then.

I have lost 57 pounds since that fateful day (2 months ago today), when I saw the largest self-generated number of my entire life on a scale on which I was standing.



Now on Thursday, I’ll go to Norma’s Restaurant with my Life Group guys. I might take juice with me to drink, but I think I’ll probably just sit with them, watch them eat, drink water, and try to direct the conversation. Thursday will be Day 60 of my 60 day long juice fast.

I’ll eat some food on Friday, to go along with my juice (which I have grown to like). I will try to avoid processed foods of any kind, and be heavy on the veggies, a little less heavy on fruits, beans and legumes, and still less heavy on the stuff at the top of the pyramid. In short, I’ll plan to follow Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s approach from his book, Eat to Live, and his Nutritarian food pyramid (see the image).


Long overdue update (notice how I think someone really cares)

Today is Day 43 of my Juice Fast. The other day Rose asked me, “Don’t you feel hungry?” The truth is that I don’t. This has been very easy for me. I even accompanied Rose and my Mom to IHOP a couple days ago (I took my juice with me). They ate a traditional breakfast meal with bacon and eggs, and had fancy waffles. I drank my juice. I was fine.

Thinking about being where others are eating, tomorrow night is the OCC Faculty/Staff & Families back to school night. It is scheduled to take place at Carousel Park in Joplin, where they have a bunch of rides for kids to ride. We invited our grandkids to come, but they have a “back to school” activity in Mount Vernon. Then the next day we have our Faculty Retreat, which always entails eating. I’ll have my juice. Then on the 19th, we have our Convocation Banquet. I’ll drink my juice in advance. I’ll go, but just drink some water. I don’t like cheesecake anyway.

I never reported back on the results of my blood work. If the doctor read the report, he never called me about it. Nearly a week after I had the blood taken (four days after the doc received them, and never followed up on my call about the results—-Grrrrrrrr!), I went by to inquire about them. I was told that he hadn’t had a chance to read them yet (he received them on Thursday; this was Monday). They gave me a copy of them. Granted, I am a lay person, but I can see the numbers, and can align them with normal ranges printed on the report.

(Nearly) everything was normal. Most of my cholesterol numbers were in normal range. The composite number for the cholesterol was LOW (121, where as the normal range starts at 125). Also, the HDL (good cholesterol) was lower than it should be, but only by 1 point (39, where normal range starts at 40). By the way, in the past 4-5 years, my HDL has never been that close to normal range. All of the other things on the report were within normal range.

So . . . my juice fast has gone well. I have energy. This morning I kicked up the treadmill to a level I had never done for a full 30 minutes, then I did yard work for about an hour (in the rain, partially). In short, I feel well.  I will plan to be on my Juice Fast through August 29, which takes us into the 2nd week of classes. On August 30, I will plan to eat a little solid food.

How much weight have I lost? As of this morning I am 50.8 lbs lighter than I was that fatefuly morning when I saw the largest number ever on my scale. Soli Deo Gloria!


Over a month “on the juice,” and I hit 40! (not HRs)

August 1, 2013

I’ve been “on the juice” for over a month now. Not the Biogenesis kind, so I anticipate no suspension from MLB. I’ve hit zero home runs since I started juicing. If you missed the back story, you can check it out here: Radical Decision, or the later updates. I weighed myself this morning, and I am down 40 lbs since June 24!

Actually, today is DAY 32 of what could become a 60-day juice fast. I went to the doctor on Day 30, primarily to accomplish 3 things:

  • confession of making such a drastic decision, and implementing it for an entire month without consulting a doctor
  • get an order for blood work to let the numbers tell a more complete story of what is going on in my body
  • get an Rx to treat what appears to be an infected insect bite

His reaction was not unlike what I expected. He had neither seen nor heard of the documentary, Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead (this link will allow you to watch the documentary on YouTube), which inspired my radical decision, though he liked the title. Initially, he said, “I’ve never been one to argue with success.” I told him that the largest number ever on the scale provided the motivation, and that I knew I had to make a radical change in my eating habits. I spoke of going from being a couch potato (really an office desk potato) to nominal activity (at least a mile to a mile and a half every day on the treadmill). He was concerned about the possibly negative effects of losing too much weight in a short span of time, vitamin deficiency, etc. For that reason, he included an analysis for vitamin B12 and folic acid in the blood work.

August 2, 2013

I wanted to post this yesterday, but waited, because I planned to add a comment about the results of my blood work. I called the Dr yesterday afternoon, to get the results, but got sent to voice mail, where I left a message with the nurse, but did NOT get a call back. His office is closed today (Friday), so I’ll have to wait until Monday to get the results.

By the way, the weight loss today is up to 41.8 lbs!

I did plan to mention that I hit a bump in the road, in that my juicer quit last weekend. It is under warranty, but a hassle while waiting for a replacement. We shipped it to New York on Saturday (I had enough juice to get me into Sunday. Knowing that I would be without a juicer for a while, but planning to continue the juice fast was a problem. The solution? I used a 20% off coupon to buy a NutriBullet at Bed, Bath & Beyond. With that machine, I have been pulverizing veggies and fruits, though you have to add water. I had thought I might be interested in that machine past the juice fast anyway. The NutriBullet machine has gotten me through this week. I did not expect my replacement juicer to arrive until the end of next week, but . . . it arrived today! Now I can use mainly the juicer, for real juice, and add the use of the NutriBullet for fun stuff, like the spinach-pineapple drink I had for an early lunch. By the way, spinach has become my go to green leafy vegetable. The nutrient density of spinach is not as high as that of kale and collards, but it is still pretty high. The scale is based on Dr. Joel Furhman’s ANDI scale, rating the nutrient density of a number of foods. I’ve preferred spinach to kale, as it seems to be juiced much easier.

I’ll update a report on the results from my blood work next week.



One month since I drank a soda . . . (among other things I HAVE consumed)

Today is the one month mark of my Radical Decision, though I only posted about it on July 1. Anyway, on June 24, I saw the largest number EVER when I got on a scale, and decided to do something about it. One week later (July 1), I started juicing. It has gone VERY WELL! Today is the 24th day of my juice fast, a fast during which I have drunk LOTS of water, and the only nutrition I have had,  has come in the form of micronutrients (in the form of naturally extracted juices) from LOTS of vegetables, and LOTS of fruit.

How much weight have I lost in one week of eating fruits, vegetables, brown rice, and nuts, followed by 23 days of juicing?

Are you ready? Drum-roll please . . .  in the past month I have lost a grand total of  34.2  pounds!

I have not gone hungry. I have had quite a bit of energy. I feel well.

Now, so my mother will not worry, I plan to visit my doctor next week, and have him draw blood, to see how healthy (or unhealthy) I am. I did not tell him I would embark on this road. I really don’t think he would have encouraged me to do it. I did not have blood work done JUST before beginning this, but it has only been about 3 months, so he will certainly have some sort of a base line from which to compare. I think that my numbers should be substantially improved, maybe even to the point of not needing to take my medication for high cholesterol (I’ve been taking Crestor for about a year now). If all is well, and if I am still of the same mind, I would continue on for another 30 days, making this a 60 day juice fast. No promises, just yet.

Some say that a person who is trying to lose weight should NOT weigh daily. However, since we came back from our Branson vacation (where I did not have scales but I DID have a juicer), I have weighed myself daily, recording my daily weight on both a spreadsheet and on Walgreens’ site. I have also done AT LEAST a mile on the treadmill every single day since we returned from Branson. In Walgreens’ STEPS program, I get points for doing healthy things (which ultimately means CASH value toward purchases there).

Disclaimer: there is something in the previous paragraph that is not true. I have walked at least a mile on the treadmill every day, except for 2 days. Last Thursday night, Rose and I entered the smoky arena called 4th Street Bowl. Freeman Hospital, where she works, has “summer healthy lifestyle” activities in which their employees can participate. These activities are listed on a BINGO-like card. She will get certain points for completing her BINGO card. One of the activities was to go bowling. So, last Thursday evening we went bowling. My score was atrocious, but, we figured out the last time we went bowling was probably when Kim still lived in Joplin, so that must have been about 5 years ago. Anyway, I was unable to walk on the treadmill on Friday and Saturday. Somehow, I managed to sprain the big toe on my right while we were bowling. It was really tender. I got on the treadmill on Friday morning in an attempt, but when it sped up, I just was unable to keep going, so I stopped. I did not try at all on Saturday. By Sunday I was able to return to my routine. In this morning’s workout, I pushed it up one notch higher (in speed and elevation) than what I ever had.

Now, how does one sprain a big toe while bowling? I honestly do not know. It was the first time I had ever sprained the big toe on my right foot. Now I’ve sprained the big toe on my left foot LOTS OF TIMES, but that is a story for another day.

One other thing happened of small consequence for some of my manually capable friends, but which was HUGE for me! We are in the middle of remodeling a bathroom. Yesterday afternoon, a crew was coming to lay new flooring. I figured that I couldn’t mess up too much removing the toilet, so that they could do their job. I DID mess it up, but finally, got the job done. Realizing that I am pretty clumsy with manual jobs like that, when I went to the hardware store to get a new wax ring to re-seat the toilet, I asked them about a handy man. They gave me the name an number of man. Now it hasn’t been very many months when I needed to do something in the other bathroom, which required me to remove the toilet tank. I had NO SMALL PROBLEM getting it not to leak. Also, I know now that the correct way to do what I was attempting would have been to remove the entire toilet, without removing the tank. I didn’t know that at the time, so I just took everything apart. Knowing how difficult re-attaching the tank without leaks in the other bathroom was, I was scared. I DID want the toilet to be re-installed right away, so I thought I would resort to professional help, that is . . . until he quoted me the price. Now, there might be a remote possibility that some plumber could be reading these lines, but I thought that $90 was a pretty steep price. I didn’t tell the plumber that, but told him I might call him back. I watched several YouTube videos on how to accomplish the task at hand, and decided to try my hand at it. clickseal

How did it go? SUCCESSFUL! The part that scared me the most was the seal between the tank and the base. No problem (I changed ALL the hardware, which is the way one is supposed to do it. On the previously mentioned attempt, I tried to change only the rubber gasket). Getting the base seated on the new wax ring was also a piece of cake. Only the water line gave me a little trouble. I discovered a pretty cool trick, using a Fluidmaster CLICK SEAL Toilet Water Supply Connector. Now I had heard that the connection to the toilet tank only needs to be hand tight, but it never seemed to work for me. The hose I was working with had been abused (someone [maybe David Fish?] had tried to tighten it up really tight multiple times in the past). Anyway, when I hooked THAT PART  of my job up, water leaked. A quick run to the store and I discovered this new hose. I picked it up, and thought, “This sounds too good to be true!” I got it home (Rose and Greg were out to eat–since I don’t eat, I got to try to finish my installation before the got back), hooked it up, it clicked (meaning that it was fully connected), I checked it, and it DOES NOT LEAK!

I DID call the plumber back to thank him for his willingness to come, and for his time, but that I had watched some videos on the right way to do the job, and accomplished it myself. He would not have been able to come until the morning anyway.

34.2 pounds in one month. Today is Day 24. I’ll be consuming juice made from spinach, celery, cucumber, apple and orange. Yummy!


Radical Decision (Day 10)

I thought it might be appropriate to write up a short report about my experience. I radically altered my dietary intake beginning on June 24 (mainly fruits & vegetables, drinking water–it almost sounds like Daniel 1:12). On July 1, I began a juice fast, making my own juices from raw produce, both fruit and vegetables, and drinking water somewhat massively (easily over 100 ounces a day), with an occasional herbal tea.

Since June 24, I have lost about 22 pounds, but still have a bunch to go. This is Day 10 of the juice fast, inspired by Joe Cross’s documentary (2011), Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead. I have not been hungry. I don’t think I have been overly irritable. I came down with one of those evil summer colds after I started, so I have been dealing with that. We spent the first six days of my juice fast in a condo at Table Rock Lake in Branson. Since coming home, rather than preparing juice in the mornings, I have found it more agreeable to prepare juice in the evenings, for consumption the next day. It has not been too bad. Every morning (since we arrived back home), I have been walking on the treadmill. I can see that I am getting stronger.

Here are a few of my juice creations:



We got back from Branson on Saturday afternoon. On Sunday, I sold a Chinese motor scooter that I had ridden for seven years. I think I sold it at top dollar. On Monday, I bought a 1981 Honda CM400E (sight unseen) on eBay, located 83 miles away. It only cost my $216 dollars more than I received for the motor scooter, but I am certain that it will last A LOT LONGER! Insurance is just about the same as what I was paying, and it cost me all of $35 to apply for the new title and pay sales tax. I ordered a trunk for it, as that was my modus operandi with the scooter, as far as carrying laptop, books, etc. That should probably arrive next week. Here is a photo of it in my favorite parking spot at work:



Some of the other bikers who work at OCC tell me that they think I got an excellent purchase. It was titled in the name of a husband and wife. She has taught at a Christian school in Chanute, KS, and both taught and knows very well some of my former students.

There IS concern that I have about the juice fast. On Friday afternoon, I will start what is called Weekend Intervention Program, part of SATOP (Missouri’s education/rehabilitation of people who drive motor vehicles under the influence of alcohol). I will spend 22 face-to-face hours with a Spanish-speaking “client,” functioning as his interpreter. My concern is this. The group takes a break every hour or hour and a half, and there is ALWAYS a table with snacks (cookies, candy, chips, nuts), free for the taking. Since I made this radical decision, I have been very strong and committed to this plan. I took Rose out to eat on July 4, and she consumed at the restaurant, and I had a Sonic cup with my own juice. Sunday evening we had long-time friends over for Chilean food. They partook of stuff that I really like, but I sat at the table, and drank my juice.

But, . . . at times past, when I was trying to eat sensibly, this program has been a challenge to me. The program is held at the local Holiday Inn. The group takes meals together, served by Holiday Inn staff. During meals this weekend, I will not go to the dining area. I will probably take a cooler with my juice, so during their meal times, I can drink my nourishment. I plan on resisting the temptation during break times. Writing my intention here will help me to get through this challenge.

Just wanted to let those who are interested how things are going.

Blessings to all!

Radical Decision Update (7 days in)

I’m writing this post as an update to my juice fast. If you missed the last post, I had my last soda pop on Monday, June 24 (as well as my last meat), as I was preparing for a juice fast (a la Fat, Sick, and Nearly DeadIf you haven’t seen the documentary, I recommend it.

On June 24, I weighed in at an all-time-high (for me) weight. In fact, that number shocked  me. I was already planning to do something radical, so that day I decided to spend the rest of that week following a fruit and vegetable diet (a la Fat Smash Diet), in preparation for a juice fast. We left home for vacation in Branson on Saturday, June 29. I had purchased my juicer, but hadn’t opened the box. I planned to start the juice fast on July 1.

I am writing this particular line on Saturday night, July 6, but won’t post this until tomorrow morning, after I weigh in. I won’t report the actual weight (I have that recorded in a spreadsheet), so if you want to let your imagination run wild, you can guess that I was up to 435 pounds (you would be wrong). I will report the total weight loss since Monday morning, June 24. I lost 7 pounds during my prep week.

What I do want to do right now is to let you know that I have not been hungry at all. I’ve consumed LOTS of micronutrients from the following fruits and vegetables:

  • kale
  • spinach
  • celery
  • carrots
  • cucumbers
  • ginger root
  • apples (both green and red)
  • oranges
  • lemon
  • strawberry
  • kiwi

I’ve got some other ingredients to try soon, including summer squash.

I don’t know for sure if my energy level has increased, but it has NOT decreased.

On the 4th of July, Rose and I went to the White River Fish House, a restaurant built out over Lake Taneycomo at the Branson Landing shopping center. We had eaten there before, and had a wonderful outside table over the water. Rose ordered one of her favorite dishes, and I sat there patiently with my own juice in a Sonic cup. They brought steaming hot cornbread before the meal. I know that it was very tasty, but I just watched Rose enjoy it, and drank water and my juice. ¡Cero problema! (No problem!)

This is not something everybody needs to do, but I certainly believe that need to do this.

I’ll save this draft now, and report my total weight loss in the morning.

Sunday morning at 8:10 AM report:

  • Walked 1.48 miles on treadmill
  • Showered
  • Weighed in . . . 18.6 pounds down from June 24 weight.

Thank you, Lord!