Thursday, March 15, 2012

Completely Sore and Loving It!

After my long day at work yesterday, I went home to run a whole bunch of errands.  I stopped at the casino and had to park quite a ways away.  I got home and was completely exhausted.  Ashley and I stayed up until around midnight and then I was up to get ready around 5 AM this morning.  I'm not tired today, but my muscles are sore.

I didn't do so great on my calories yesterday, but it wasn't because I went over.  I was way under my calories for the day and I had only eaten about 1,000 calories total for the day.  From what I have read this is just as bad as eating too many calories, because it causes your body to go into "starvation mode."  I need to keep a closer eye on my calories throughout the day.

This morning when I was up early we watched some infomercials and I saw both the P90X and Insanity infomercials.  I know people personally that have had great success with P90X and I have only heard about people starting Insanity recently.  P90X requires a bit of money for equipment and a lot of time dedicated each day around an hour and a half.  Insanity requires around 40 minutes, don't quote me on this, each day.  I might look into something like this as it would give me more organization to my exercising.

Has anyone had any experience with either of these programs? (P90X or Insanity)  Until next time, the Daddy Weight Loss journey continues!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Calorie Counting: 15 Days and Still Counting!

Today marks 15 days of counting calories and I have only slipped up once.  I haven't been too active with the exercising portion, but I have been keeping busy with work and everything.  The weather here is getting up into the 60's (F) so we are getting back to walking/running tonight.

At work today I helped to unload a 53 foot trailer packed with semi tires.  I was absolutely beat afterwards, but I felt really good about it.  It was nice to get outside and work instead of sitting at a desk staring at a monitor all day.

I hurt my knee a little bit last week and I am really hoping that it doesn't bother me when I run.  That would push my efforts way back.  I will update you all if it bothers me or not tomorrow.  It is hard to explain what happened, but basically I fell around 15 feet and landed with my leg straight.  I was on equipment so think about if an elevator fell 15 feet and stopped abruptly.  It hasn't been hurting too bad today, but running might bother it.

See you all tomorrow!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Still on Track - Cocoa, Ice Cream, and Snacks

The title may be a little misleading, but I still managed to stay under my calorie goal while enjoying some treats.  I didn't plan on eating all of that, I was just really hungry.  I had a little bit of Chex Mix, about a half serving.  After the Chex Mix my sweet tooth went into overdrive and I had a half serving of ice cream with some peanuts.  Ashley had a craving for hot cocoa so she made some for both of us and it was really good!

I was pretty nervous when I went to add all of this to my calorie counter, but I came in with 61 calories remaining for the day.  I submitted my log for the day and the app told me I was still on track to lose 10 pounds in 5 weeks.  Yesterday also marked a milestone of being the 10th day in a row that I have logged calories.  Only slipping up once in the first 10 days is pretty impressive for me and I am very proud of myself.  I just need to get back to exercising as soon as the weather cooperates.  I am still doing my daily crunches and push ups, but we all know that I need some cardio in my life.  The weather forecast looks good for this weekend so maybe I'll be able to strap the running shoes on!

On a side note, I think baby weight loss sounds a little weird, so I am going to go with Daddy Weight Loss.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Buffet - Not All I Could Eat

We went to Ponderosa yesterday for Ashley's birthday with her family.  I was able to eat at the buffet and still stay within my calorie goal for the day.  I only had 50 calories left after the buffet, but I think I did pretty good.  Ashley had a coupon for her birthday so we got 2 orders of Sirloin Tips that I was able to eat today for breakfast and lunch, so that will help with today's calories.  After the buffet I decided to do some crunches and push ups, but instead just one set I did multiples.  I'm not sure if I mentioned it, but I am now doing push ups without having my knees down which is a big accomplishment for me.  I was able to do 11 during each set last night, which is 1 more than I can usually do.  Crunches burned a little bit more last night, but I was paying closer attention to technique and I could tell the difference.

I did a little posing in the mirror last night and I am really starting to see the effects.  My stomach seems flatter and my arms seem more defined.  I still have a long way to go, but these little motivations help quite a bit.  Operation baby weight loss is in full effect!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Huge Personal Milestone

Yesterday I continued counting calories and made absolutely sure I stayed up my calorie goal of 1780.  I managed to stay under even with a few extra snacks throughout the day, I was only under by about 80 calories at least I was under and not over.  Weight loss is my primary goal and I need to do everything I can to achieve that.

After work last night, I stopped over my parents house to pick up some food and decided to weigh myself while I was there.  Now just a little back story first, my lowest weight since graduating high school (2004) is 232.2 pounds.  This past summer/fall I was at around 248 pounds and due to a change at my job I dropped down to 235 pounds.  Well the change at my job has been reversed and I was just floating at 235 pounds and I knew it was the perfect time to get back down.

Back to my parents house, so I jumped on the scale and looked down and saw 232.2 pounds.  I was very excited and knew that my hard work was paying off.  I went to write down my weight and realized that last time I weighed I used the same scale but was only wearing underwear.  I stripped down to my underwear and jumped back on the scale, and what did I see?

228.6 pounds

I was absolutely ecstatic and couldn't believe my eyes.  In 8 years I haven't been this small.  The greatest part is for the past few days I have started to notice that I feel smaller, my stomach looks tighter, and I have more energy.  It is amazing to see that my hard work is really paying off!

Please let this motivate all of you out there, it is never too late to get into shape and anyone can do it.  I know this will certainly motivate me and give me that push that I really needed.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

I finally slipped up...

I have been doing so well on my calorie counting and I figured I deserved a treat last night so I had some striped shortbread cookies.  My mistake was not looking at the serving size and bringing the whole box to the couch.  I ended up 850 calories over my goal for the day and I felt pretty crappy about it.  Don't worry though, it just fuels my motivation even more.  I just wouldn't have guessed that a serving size would be two tiny cookies, so now I am a little bit more alert to these types of things.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Busy Day

I have a very busy day today due to the baby shower yesterday and I won't have time to write a full post until tomorrow.  I can say that I stayed under my calorie goal everyday since I have started counting.  I also walked for 60 minutes on both Saturday and Sunday, so even though it was a weekend I didn't slack.  I also did my daily push ups and crunches.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Count Calories on the Go with the Mobile App Logo

I have never in my life counted calories and I never thought that I would.  I thought I was eating healthy, but I knew something must be wrong if I never lose weight.  As I mentioned before I started counting calories a couple days ago and I mentioned I was using an Android app to do so.  I am using's app to track my calories and exercise (Also available for iPhone and iPad).  

Example screenshot from app

Once you download the app, you will be required to create an account and fill in some personal details.  It asks for things such as age, weight, height, and daily activity level.  I believe it also asks how often you will be exercising.  Once completed with that it will ask what weight is your goal and how many pounds you wish to lose a week (within reason).  Finally, it will give you your recommended daily calorie allowance.

Now each time you eat, drink water, or exercise you pull out your phone and enter the details.  Exercises are pretty straightforward, for example you type push ups and hit search and then enter sets and reps.  If you search running it gives different speeds, but if you put strength training it will give sets, reps, and weight.  Exercises that burn calories will subtract from the food you have eaten for the day.  For example if you ate 1500 calories and went running and burned 500 calories, you would only have 1000 calories counted against your daily allotment.  MyFitnessPal does not count calories burned from weight lifting or strength training.

You can also add water which is just a nice way of keeping track of how much you drink each day.  Food is where the app really shines in that it is extremely easy and useful at the same time.  This morning I took a multivitamin, drank a low carb Monster, and ate a sausage and cheese muffin from Burger King.  While taking the multivitamin; I pulled out my phone, clicked on the app, hit add to diary, chose breakfast, and scanned the bar-code on the vitamin label.  The app scans the bar-code and puts the nutritional value into your diary.  I also did the same for my Monster, and searched for my breakfast sandwich.  Throughout the day you can look at your nutritional goals and see where you are in excess and where you are lacking. states that they have nutritional details for over 1 million foods!  If you can't find something you can add custom entries and even recipes.

The first day of calorie counting I really thought I was doing great, but at the end of the day I noticed that I had consumed about 90g of sugar over top of my allowed total.  Yesterday, I had more cholesterol than I should have.  I can see where my vitamin deficiencies might be and when I don't have enough protein in my diet.  The app stores all of these details and you can look back and see what foods you might want to avoid next time.

The app and website ( have a plethora of other features as well, the biggest being a social network.  I don't use this yet, but I might look into it.  From MyFitnessPal's research, those with friends on the service tend to lose 3 times as much weight as those that don't.  This is because you are not only sharing these details with yourself, but also with others who can hold you accountable or motivate you.  The site has forums, chat, and blogs to help motivate and educate.  On the website you can also run reports on various things such as nutrition, fitness, and weight loss.

Example report of my net calories consumed

At the end of the day each day, you can close out your diary for the day.  At this point it posts to your "wall" saying that you finished your day and how you did.  My favorite part however, is that after you finish for the day it pops up and gives you an update.  It is along the lines of, if everyday was like today you will weight XXX.X pounds in X weeks.  Last night mine said that I will weigh 221.5 (from 235) in 5 weeks, even if those numbers aren't true, it sure is a great motivation.  I have noticed over the last 2 days that at night I feel like I should have a snack before bedtime, I fire up the app and think to myself is it really worth it?  I imagine in my head how that one snack every night could be an extra pound lost each week and I forget all about having a snack.

Example of what you see at the end of each day

All in all, I think that this will really help me to keep track of my weight loss and exercise.  You can never have too many tools for this type of thing.  It is the convenience for me that makes this a real winner in my book.  If you would like to join me on the site, my username is ryanlthornton.  The Android market and iTunes links are below.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Rest Day

Yesterday I had a rest day.  It was my first day of counting calories and I was a little sore from the day before.  I still did 10 push ups and 30 crunches on lunch and took a 15 minute walk around the block with Ashley.  I ended up 200 calories under my daily goal of 1780 and I was pretty high on my sugar intake, but the app said that if everyday was like yesterday I would lose 11.5 pounds by April 5th.  I hope that it is right because that would be pretty good progress.

I hope that I am able to work out tonight, whether it be cardio or strength training.  I am starting to get a headache from grinding my teeth today and my shoulders are still sore from lifting the other day.  My shoulders have always been my weakest muscle and I hope to change that this time around.  The push ups are getting better, at least my knees aren't on the ground anymore.

See you all tomorrow!

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

A little nervous...

My back in the mirror

Okay, so I have finally manned up.  I never planned on putting pictures on here, but I was thinking last night that it would be a great way to show my progress.  Also, it is hard for all of the readers out there to imagine what I look like.  My starting weight was 235 pounds in these pictures, my goal is to weigh in at 150 pounds.  

 My side

I started using an app called MyFitnessPal for my android phone to count calories.  At first I just want to use it for a baseline to see where I am at and where I need to be.  The app says that for me to lose 2 pounds per week that I will need to consume 1780 calories daily.  I had a low carb Monster energy drink and a banana for breakfast, I currently have 1650 calories remaining for the day.  I think that tracking my caloric intake might be the best way for me to concentrate on a diet, so once I am comfortable with counting calories I will start taking it serious.

 My thigh

Ashley really helped to motivate me last night.  I got home from work and we were both hungry so she made a nice salad and I cooked steaks on the grill.  After dinner she walked with me around the block and then I ran 2 laps around "my track."  After running I did a few exercises in the house:

 Me flexing

  • 30 push ups
  • 30 crunches
  • 15 jumping jacks
  • 15 barbell curls (60 lbs)
  • 15 dead lifts (150 lbs)
  • 15 barbell shoulder press (60 lbs)

 My calf

It has been along time since I have worked out like this and it feels amazing.  I actually broke a sweat while running and maintained momentum while lifting weights.  I don't feel too sore this morning, but I can feel in my muscles that I worked out yesterday.

 My front

Things are really coming together for my weight loss journey and I am hoping that I find success at the end of the tunnel.  The people around me and the people that read this blog are really what keep me going.  The thought of becoming a father is really my biggest motivation, I want to be a role model to him in more ways that one.

 My back while flexing

I will go for a walk tonight for sure and probably do some push ups and crunches.  I don't want to push myself too hard and burn out before it begins.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

It counts right?

I really intended on working out last night and not to let you all down, but I didn't.  After work I met Ashley at the store to do grocery shopping, while shopping we realized our freezer isn't big enough.  My father was nice enough to offer us a chest freezer when we moved into the new house, but we never took it.  I called him and he said I could come over and load it up in his truck.  While we were getting the freezer he mentioned that I should take all of my weight lifting equipment.  We loaded up my weight bench, dumbbells, bars, accessories, and all of my weights. I have 1000+ pounds of weights and I carried them upstairs and loaded them in the truck.  Once I had everything loaded we drove out to my house where I unloaded everything and carried it down the stairs.

So I guess in all reality I really did workout yesterday after all!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Back to Work

I'm back to work today after a very relaxing weekend.  I went for a half hour walk on lunch and I'm feeling great!  I think tonight will be the night that I add in some more exercising other than just aerobics.  I will start with  push ups and crunches for now.  I'm not sure if I am losing weight, but I have never felt better.

I will be grocery shopping tonight, and as I mentioned I am not exactly on a diet yet.  I will let my weight loss journey influence what we buy tonight though.  I have a very busy day ahead of me today, so today's posts are a little short.  I'm sure I will have more to say tomorrow!

Friday, February 24, 2012

I might as well, right?

I decided yesterday that I'm going to start running on my lunch break at work.  We have a mandatory half hour lunch that is deducted from our pay each day, and we have a very large facility with a huge parking lot.  I work for a trucking company so we have to have room for tractor trailers so there is plenty of space around the entire building.  I ran yesterday 2 laps around the building, stretching before and after.  I only was able to run 1 today because I had to pick up lunch for our mechanics.  We moved our mechanics tools and parts into the building today so it was a very physical day and I did a lot of lifting.

It is amazing running during lunch, I used to be so tired after lunch when I would just sit around and eat.  Yesterday and today I felt completely rejuvenated and pushed through the rest of the day like it was nothing.  I even received a few compliments on the way to my office today, 2 people said that I seemed to have been working really hard yesterday and didn't stop moving until I punched out.  That made it just that much better!

If anyone else out there has a mandatory lunch break, I would recommend bring a quick mobile lunch and strapping on the running shoes.  Not only does it make you have more energy, but it saves time after work for family.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Morning Run

Sunrise over Presque Isle in Erie, PA

I went for a run this morning and I feel absolutely amazing.  I had a free half hour to spare so I did a little stretching and went running for about 20 minutes.  I was pretty sick last night and I got a few extra hours of sleep so I was already pretty energized.  It was cold out and snowing a little bit, but after a few minutes it didn't really bother me.

I am looking into running a 10k locally in August, but I will know better once the time comes.  I need to make sure that I have free time and also that I am in shape to do it.  I will be running alongside a coworker who has been motivating me through the process of taking up running.

I can't stress enough how amazing a runner's high feels, but it feels even better first thing in the morning.  I feel more lively and productive at work, I am in a better mood, and I don't feel tired like I usually do.  Unfortunately, I have a real problem waking up in the morning so it may be hard to do this on a regular basis.  I am working on my wake up routine and hopefully I can find a system that will help me avoid hitting the snooze button for 2 hours straight.

The picture above was not taken by me, it was taken by Tom Rung and posted on  I only posted it because this sunrise can be seen from near my house every morning and it is amazing.  Maybe that will be a personal goal, to wake up and run to take a picture of the sunrise.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Nutella: Not So Healthy

Mmm... Nutella...

So I was browsing the web recently and stumbled across the Nutella lawsuit article again.  For those of you that haven't heard about this hilarious lawsuit I will post the link at the end of this post.  After reading it for probably the 10th time I decided it was time I try some Nutella for myself.  Now just a bit of history, I will eat anything and everything and probably enjoy it.  While at the grocery store I picked up some Nutella and bread and headed home.  I toasted up 2 slices of bread and spread Nutella on it, I noticed that it was hard to spread and the container was pretty small.  I ate the bread and instantly fell in love with Nutella.  Fast forward a few weeks and I have tried Nutella as a pretzel dip, with ice cream, and even straight from the jar.

I have decided that Nutella will not be brought into my house again, because it is far too tempting to have around.  Now the point of this post really wasn't Nutella, the point of this post is to point out that I am not currently on a diet or watching what I eat.  I do have a reason for this folks, and I'm here to explain it.

My biggest problem in the past with losing weight was doing too much at once.  I would start exercising, watch what I eat, cut out pop from my daily routine, and constantly research new diets and exercises.  I would also push myself too far with my exercises, and by that I mean push my body too hard and devote too much time.

These problems always lead me to the same destination, giving everything up at once.  This time I am going to do things differently, at least that is what I'm telling myself.  I am going to start by running 3 times a week, I figure this is a good starting point and doesn't push me too hard or take up too much time.  I know that I won't see significant results from this, but that is why I don't own a scale.  I am not a results driven person, results give a false sense of success that usually ends up going to my head.

As far as running this week, I am on a 3 day losing streak for running after work.  However, yesterday and today I ran during work.  Today I spent 4 hours on a project, of those 4 hours only 1 of the hours was spent standing still.  The other 3 hours were spent walking or running, I am absolutely exhausted.  I would still like to try to run after work today if the weather permits.

Well I brought you all here under the false assumption that I would be talking all about Nutella, but I stayed on my blog topic and just brought a little something else to the table.  For those that wanted to read that article it is linked below.

"Shocked" That It's Not Healthy, Mother Sues Nutella - The Consumerist

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

A Little Break

I took Sunday and Monday off from running, don't worry though this doesn't mean that I'm falling off track.  Sunday I was very active and was exhausted by the time it came around to running.  Last night we worked on putting up mini blinds in the house, so between that and running back and forth to the store I got my exercise for the day.  I will resume running today and will update tomorrow as to how much stamina I have.

I will also be adding in some of my original workout routinely slowly.  I don't want to make the mistakes I have made in the past and burn myself out too quickly.  We have a baby appointment today, so I will be getting out of work early and this will give me some extra time to get started.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Bye George!

Yesterday we had to return George to his previous owner.  There are a few reasons for this, the main one being that his previous owner wanted him back.  He also was very depressed and anxious at our house, and damaged quite a bit of our new home due in part to this.  He wouldn't eat and didn't like to go out to go to the bathroom.  Gizmo (our cat) was also very uncomfortable with him in the house, and being that Gizmo is our first pet we wouldn't want him to feel uncomfortable.  George is now back home and happy, and Gizmo is back to his old self.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Buffet and Running

I went to a buffet last night (Ponderosa Steakhouse) and for the first time in my life I didn't eat all I could eat.  I had 2 plates compared to my normal 4 or 5 and a little bit of ice cream for dessert.  Afterwards we went straight home and our dog George was in his cage, so when I let him out he was very hyper.  I took him out and tied him up to go to the bathroom.  While he was doing his business I stretched.  When he was finished we went for a 20 minute run at the soccer fields.  While running I noticed something out of the corner of my eye, there is a 20 step wooden staircase leading directly to my house!  I didn't see it due to the brush around it, but we ran up that which was definetly a workout. 

We went back in the house and I ate some pistachios and a glass of milk.  Then Ashley and I sat on the couch and watched a scary movie (Insidious) afterwards I had a slight stomach ache and we went to bed.

Friday, February 17, 2012

New Motivation

Well everyone, I have some new motivation for weight loss and exercise.  My fiancee (Ashley) is currently 7 months pregnant, and I would like to be able to keep up with my son when he gets here.  This means that I need to be healthy and in good physical shape.

My biggest issue is that I never fit cardio into my schedule.  I don't own a treadmill and I don't have a gym membership.  I don't enjoy running where I will see other people, but I get bored when I run alone.  We just bought our first home in January and we live across the street from some soccer fields that don't get used much.  I have been telling myself that I will start running there once the snow is gone.  Well the snow has been gone for a few days and still no running.

Last night, I got a dog, he is a German Shepard/Bloodhound mix named George.  After getting everything set up at the house for him, I strapped on my running shoes and grabbed a leash.  We walked over to the fields and then ran all the way around them and back home.  It was a small start, but at least I went running.  After coming back I felt amazing, I ate some cottage cheese and pistachios and then went to bed.

I may not get in perfect shape before Tobias Edward is born, but at least I will have a jump start on the process.  Please sound off in the comments if you have any suggestions that would help.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

I Ran Today!

I got the chance to run today, not for exercise but for necessity. An emergency occurred at work while I was in a different facility and I had to run to the main building and then all the way through the main building to my office. It was a little under a half mile, but man did I feel good after!  I was a little sweaty and out of breath, but I haven't been working out and I smoke.  I can't wait to start running, the weather looks like it may cooperate this weekend.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Light at the end of the tunnel?

I completely fell off of the weight loss wagon, life has been absolutely nuts.  I've got a new job, bought a new home, and me and my fiancee are having a baby in May.  Everything is finally settling down and I am in fairly good shape because of all of the changes.  I bought a pair of running shoes last night and I will start running everyday starting on Saturday.  The wedding may be bumped up, but I will keep you all updated!